Girls can be placed in an awkward position when they are asked out. How should a girl turn down a guy? Can a woman serve her brother in Christ who goes out on a limb to ask her out on a date? The apostle Paul tells us that whether we eat or drink, we should do everything to the glory of God. This does not exclude the moment when a girl is faced with the decision to say no to a pursuer
We are talkers. Our talking isn’t just a way we pass the time. There is much more going on with our desire to speak. Part of the reason we speak compulsively is an attempt to rule and subdue the earth, because we image a God of spoken power.
When we, as kids, would complain to my dad about how mom wasn’t letting us have the sleepover we asked for, or when I entered that phase of life in college in which I felt I knew everything and she knew little, he would slowly say, “That’s my bride you’re talking about.”
A very common piece of advice, or warning, I have received is that my closest friends should not be in our church. I have been told it’s impossible to have close friendships with church members, warned I will get burned, and told to find another outlet for community in order to protect myself and my family from negative experiences.
We have, yet again, entered a new season in our household. It is no longer just dirty diapers and nursing sessions; but now it is those things plus getting homework done, consistent discipline and realizing that we are helping to form sufficient adults one day. I could be so tempted to try and just get through it. But if I’m being honest, doing life that way makes me sad.
Sometimes I like to think about how exhausted Jesus must have felt as whole towns followed him around (Mk 1:33). I like to think about this mainly because while I don’t have whole towns following me around, sometimes having chatty little children feels like it.
It may be the case that some of us have lesser capacities than others, smaller investments to make. It may be the case that someone else’s gifts seem to be more transformative in the lives of others, or are more easily seen. It is, however, most certainly the case that each person is created in the image of God and positioned in the world to reflect Him for His glory within the scope He has assigned to each (Isaiah 43:7; 2 Corinthians 10:13).
Whatever the onset, caring for aging parents necessitates we give of ourselves in ways and to degrees that we hadn’t anticipated. In the best scenario, it’s a joyful exchange of love and support between aging parents and their adult children. But for many, parent care is a challenge that brings up difficult dynamics and forces us to make decisions that put us at odds with what our parents want.
As I tossed and turned in the wee hours of the morning, my frustration grew; not with the speakers of the words I obsessed over, but with myself. It was clear to me that I had become a woman whose worth felt threatened by other’s opinions.
If men always lead from behind closed doors, then they are not leading like Jesus. When men are not attentive and in tune with the thoughts and concerns of women, they are not reflecting Jesus. If men do not honor, serve, respect and include their sisters, then they are not following Christ’s example of leadership.
When something horrible happens, something that seems unfair or unexplainable, we grasp for meaning in our suffering. More than that we try to reconcile our experience with our conception of God. The problem is, if we don’t trust His character first and foremost over what we are able to see, we will demand that in all of our trials, He answer to us. This is sin.
The gospel gives us rest from having to prove ourselves, it gives us rest from having to define ourselves based on our accomplishments, and it gives us rest from evaluating ourselves based on our performance and production.
Contrary to what our culture might tell us, our work is not defined by whether we receive a W2 for daily labors. Our work is defined by what God has put before us to do. Whether that’s with a briefcase or a diaper bag in your hand, you can rejoice that He has given you work to do and seek to honor Him in it because He’s created you to do it!
The inclination to create realities in which we are best served and most comfortable is a pervasive sin pattern we all share. But it stops us from getting to real hope that is offered because we settle for the cheap comfort of our own saccharine imaginings.
. . . if you choose to give something up to fast this season of Lent, the purpose should be to shift your focus from being on you and your needs, to being on the Lord.
Taking care of my body is a way of taking care of my soul and often, the state of my body is an indicator of how my soul is doing. We worship, minister and relate to others with both our body and soul.
I went to Bible school and seminary, and I have never been a member of a church. Never.
I always considered myself a member of my childhood church by default of my parents’ membership, but, like my faith at the time, it was never my own.
More than anything, early mornings have the tendency to heap condemnation upon me. I never feel my inadequacies and sin as acutely as I do at this time of day. It's a burden of weighty proportions. But in it, is God.
I resented others who said they had a great first year. I was envious of those who were popping out kids with no problem while we couldn’t even figure out sex. I hated when people joked about “doing it” all the time as newlyweds.
And as I saw my sinful responses to my trial grow, I realized that maybe I had worshiped my hopes for sex more than my God.
As we continue to talk about how we can love both our single and married friends well, know this: one way married couples can love their single friends is by being honest about marriage.