Viewing entries tagged
spiritual formation

Counterfeit Peace

Counterfeit Peace

When the biblical authors talk about peace, they’re far less concerned with our circumstances than our hearts.

How to Hear God's Voice

How to Hear God's Voice

In the Old Testament, they only had prophets and miraculous events. They only had the parting of the Red Sea, they only had a pillar of fire and a pillar of cloud, they only had food falling from the sky (Ex 13). But we have Jesus—the full revelation of who God is, a final form of communication (Jn 1:1).

When We Don't Love the Bible

When We Don't Love the Bible

I sat in front of my Bible discouraged and frustrated. For too many days to count, I had felt like I might as well be reading a dishwasher manual. There was a time when I would read my Bible like my life depended on it, but today I couldn’t make myself care.

Your Spouse's Sin is for Your Good

Your Spouse's Sin is for Your Good

It's no shock when I'm impatient with my husband. He's slow and methodical. He doesn't do anything in a hurry. He’s the opposite of me in this way and I love it about him. It's clear I needed to marry a man who measures my temperament with his steadiness. This characteristic of my husband is a means of grace from God to help me grow.

It also drives me nuts.

Rethinking Christianese

Rethinking Christianese

If our “Christianese” doesn’t align with the words of God himself, what language are we really speaking?

Are You Making Disciples, Or Excuses?

Are You Making Disciples, Or Excuses?

We see in Matthew’s gospel account that Jesus’ ministry is bookended with disciple-making initiatives: “Come and be disciples. . .Go and make disciples” (Matt 4:19, 28:18-20). The refusal to focus on the baton pass is to reject your identity as a disciple of Jesus.

When We Read Books Besides the Bible

When We Read Books Besides the Bible

Books that can skillfully apply the Word to practical life can teach us how to live with one another and love one another better. Well-written books can help us connect the eternal wisdom of God to the daily rhythms of life, and that’s a great thing, because that’s where he works (Ps 139:1-6)!

Women Use Porn Too

Women Use Porn Too

We can easily chat about total depravity, but the moment a pastor addresses only men on a Sunday morning to confront “their” porn problem, he’s unintentionally left women in the dark . . . with their sin.

Does Church Membership Really Matter?

Does Church Membership Really Matter?

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. 

How Jesus Grieved

How Jesus Grieved

When we face grief, the faith of Jesus is ready and waiting to help us through the Holy Spirit that dwells within us, providing the strength and comfort we need in God’s character, promises and gospel. So to understand how to grieve by faith, we should seek to grieve in the same way Jesus grieved while on earth.

When Jesus Wept

When Jesus Wept

He hated death. He hated pain. And it broke his heart. This story gives a beautiful picture of Jesus being fully God, yet totally human; his grieving was completely appropriate. It was 100% perfect.

Growing Through Grief

Growing Through Grief

Scripture teaches us that suffering is one of God’s means (and I might argue, his primary means) of growing us in spiritual maturity. So how can we respond to suffering in a way that participates in that work of spiritual and physical life in us, rather than bringing about more pain and death?  

The Jerks and The Jaded: How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Seminary

The Jerks and The Jaded: How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Seminary

Whenever you feel like you are chasing a campus popularity contest or entering the rat race to publish or be a certain teacher’s favorite, remember: no one cares. Globally? There are two billion Chinese and Indian people who couldn't care less. Don't believe me? Walk up to a dozen American millennials and ask who John Piper is and watch them stare at you. 

The God Who Takes Away

The God Who Takes Away

"But I thought . . . " we say. And we're stopped short. Our breath is caught. And another dream didn't end well, but unwell things in us ended as a result.   

They Don't Need Your Pity

They Don't Need Your Pity

Whether we realize it or not, most efforts that appear to be merciful are, in fact, anything but merciful; they use the poor for our own gratification to give our people ministry opportunities or some other short-sighted end. Do the people we minister to really need this type of ministry?

Surviving Death

Surviving Death

I wish I could have been there, but what comfort and joy to know that Jesus was there. He was holding my mother’s hand, reminding her of his faithful promises. He was preparing her heart and giving her spiritual eyes to see her true home. It has brought me peace to be reminded that my mother’s death wasn’t about my inability or failure to comfort or help her, but about His sufficiency and faithfulness to care for her.

When Satan Runs After Us

When Satan Runs After Us

Spiritual Warfare. It’s creepy. It could be potentially dangerous to think about too much, but it’s also dangerous to not think about at all. If there is a war against us, we must be aware of it so we can fight. More than that, if Scripture tells us about this battle and how to fight it, then it’s helpful to consider these things.