Tag Archives: Marriage

Weekend Picks ~ 7-14-2017

This is some stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

It’s true. It’s all true…

The 4 Crises Every Marriage Must Make It Through
Paul Carter
http://d2r1idvixky839.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/sites/5/2017/07/12103912/Lightstock-127071-CloseUp-of-Hands.jpgMarriage is a marathon, not a sprint. It is a very long journey passing through a great many twists and turns. To make it to the end with love and joy intact you will almost certainly have to pass through each of the following marital crises…

There are no perfect people and there are no perfect matches—there are only marriages made out of two sinners at various stages of growth and rehabilitation. Therefore, there will be conflict. There will be places where sin rubs up against imperfection. There will be times when sin is exposed by new challenges, new deprivations and new responsibilities.

Don’t panic, and don’t beat each other up.

This isn’t proof that you married the wrong person. This is just proof that you aren’t a perfect person. You are in process, your partner is in process; therefore, conflict is inevitable.

Is Life Harder Than You Expected?Jon Bloom
Disciples never really learn to walk by faith until they are forced to actually do it. And when they do, they discover the actual, concrete experience of walking by faith looks and feels very different than the abstract idea of walking by faith…

A war is not won in the tranquil, tidy classroom, but on the desperate battlefield, where soldiers must give their all. Christ’s gospel mission will not be fulfilled in the tranquil, tidy classroom, but on the desperate field of spiritual battle, where disciples must give their all.

This is important…

The Long, Storied Controversy Over Cheese on Apple Pie
Michael Waters
Cheddar cheese on apple pie (one of the less complex variants).This is going to completely shock a number of apple pie fans and elicit an “of course” from a whole slew of others, but: a lot of people put cheese, specifically a sharp cheddar, on their apple pies.

The tradition has silently polarized the nation…

An investigation is ongoing…

Monday Picks ~ 3-27-2017

This is some stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

Urgent Church: Nine Changes We Must Make Or Die
Thom Rainer
I know. We don’t compromise doctrine. I know. We must never say we will change God’s Word.

But many of our congregations must change. They must change or they will die.

I call these churches “the urgent church.” Time is of the essence. If changes do not happen soon, very soon, these churches will die. The pace of congregational death is accelerating.

What, then, are some of the key changes churches must make? Allow me to give you a fair warning. None of them are easy. Indeed, they are only possible in God’s power. Here are nine of them…

Peter’s Message to Politically Panicked Christians: Talk About Something ElseTrevin Wax
Peter’s Message to Politically Panicked Christians: Talk About Something ElsePeter doesn’t say, “The war is on! Defend yourselves from the world!”

Instead he says, “Abstain from the desires of the flesh that are waging war on your soul.” In other words, “I’m less concerned about what unbelievers will do to your body than I am what sin will do to your soul.” To update that message for panicked Christians in the 21st century: “I’m less concerned about what the government may do with your church’s tax-exempt status than what compromise and complacency will do to your congregation.”

Redefining IntimacyEd Shaw
evening-walk-1959986_1280The world in which we live cannot cope with intimate relationships that aren’t sexual—it makes no sense; it’s just not possible. So I’ve had to pull back from deepening friendships with both men and women out of fear that they are being seen as inappropriate. None of them were—but the supposed impossibility of non-sexual intimacy meant we felt under pressure to close them down. That’s been very hard at times.

Phonetically Defined…
Wrong Hands

Monday Picks ~ 3-20-2017

This is some stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

3 Mistakes to Avoid this EasterDan Reiland
For far too many church leaders, Easter is secretly a great disappointment every year. Not because of the attendance, that’s usually very strong, but because so few visitors return the following Sunday…

3 Mistakes to Avoid:

1) Designing your Easter service primarily for Christians
2) Emphasizing the wrong numbers
3) Comparing your church to others

We try, but we can’t…

Rejoice! We worship a God we can’t control
Aaron Armstrong
worship And that’s good news for us because a safe god, a safe Jesus, isn’t one worth our time. A safe god is one we can control, usually by trying to make it happy in some way. And a god we can control isn’t a true god at all, but an idol.

This little article popped out at me because today is my parents’ 65th wedding anniversary. He was 19, she was 17. My wife and I were barely 21 when we married. There are certainly challenges, but there are also many blessings to marrying young. Number three is my favorite. There is much more he could’ve written about that one…

3 Reasons I’m Grateful to Have Married Young
Michael Kelley
I read this week that the average age of marriage is now close to 30 years old. We, as a society, are delaying marriage. And while some of the reasons why are legitimate, I for one would offer a counterpoint to those arguments, for there are some great things in our own experience about having married at a young age. Here are three of them…


Weekend Picks ~ 3-17-2017

This is some stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

10 Things You Should Know about St. Patrick
Michael A. G. Haykin
4. Patrick’s mission to Ireland from around AD 430 to 460 was virtually the only evangelistic mission in fifth-century Western Europe.

It would seem that many Roman Christians felt that the so-called “barbarians” beyond the Roman Empire were not worth evangelizing. People in his home church in Britain actually opposed his mission to Ireland because they felt he was throwing away his life among the godless Irish.

I really enjoyed reading about his thoughts on this…

Reflections on Becoming an American CitizenDavid Murray
WelcomeYes, people get upset about illegal immigration, but America is still a country that warmly welcomes legal immigrants. At our ceremony there were maybe 3-4 other white Europeans and the remaining 73 new citizens were a dazzling array of diverse colors and cultures. The Judge encouraged a celebratory atmosphere and it was a beautiful sight and sound to behold!

I love America. I know America has big problems, many of them seemingly insoluble. But it’s still a wonderful place to live and to raise children. I wish my (now) fellow citizens could see that more. Yes, the days of a dominant Christian culture are over, but Christians are still a sizable and influential minority. There are many strong churches with many engaged and zealous young people. There are excellent Christian schools and energetic homeschooling communities. There are multiple opportunities to start businesses and an optimistic culture that encourages entrepreneurship. The military is awesome. The salmon fishing is fantastic. And I’ve even come to love football (the one that they play with their hands), especially college football.

I found this interesting and a little eye-opening. I fear the days of free speech are over. This is from Australia but you can see this happening here as well…

The Phoney War Is OverMurray Campbell
P1014033The days of free speech in Australia have come to an end. From today, public speech comes with a cost…

The catalyst for this cultural epitaph was a video produced by the Bible Society. Understand what people are so angrily protesting about:

  1. The video does not present a hate filled preacher spitting out vitriol.
  2. The video does not present a Christian leader carefully and winsomely articulating the Bible’s view on marriage.
  3. The video shows a gay man who supports same-sex marriage and a heterosexual man who does not, and they are engaging in a respectful conversation about marriage while enjoying a beer.

What is so reprehensible about this video? Nothing, of course, but in the eyes of the self-determined moral judges of our age, this video debunks the myth they have spun, that civil speech and questioning same sex marriage cannot go together. From Canberra to Spring St, from SBS to The Age, we have been told that, unless we support same sex marriage without qualification, we are bigots and homophobes. The problem is, this video dismantles that myth. But instead of engaging with it, there has been outrage because there is no forgiveness for those who dare denude the same-sex marriage narrative.

The video referenced above was sponsored by Cooper’s beer, interestingly, and has been removed from the post at their request. I wanted to see what the fuss was about so I looked for it and found it here. It really is worth watching. It shows that civil discussion and disagreement really is possible…

While we’re on the subject of marriage, I think this is an important question for churches to consider…

Of Ministers and MarriagesNicholas T. Batzig
“Does God expect lawfully ordained ministers to officiate the weddings of believers?” The answer I give may surprise you.

I’m not entirely sure that ministers of the Gospel are responsible for officiating weddings–yes, even a Christian wedding…

In a day when special interest groups are seeking to ensnare and overthrow the church of God with cries of discrimination concerning the ministerial refusal to officiate certain weddings, it would certainly do us good to consider whether it is even a God-ordained, Scriptural responsibility of ministers to officiate weddings. As you do, you may actually come to the conclusion that it is our prerogative to officiate the weddings of believers, but not a God-ordained responsibility of ministers.

This is so, so good. I wanted to quote the whole thing!

Be Patient With Your ChurchMelissa Edgington
The local church is never going to be perfect… No church anywhere will ever achieve perfect Christ-likeness, ever. Because every, single church is filled with people who struggle every day against their own sins, their own selfish tendencies, their own desires for glory.

We have to be patient with each other.

Chances are, if you aren’t attending a local church because you had a bad experience there, you’re eliminating the entire church from your life over one thing…

And then, others of you are active members of churches, but you are impatient to see things done your way. You are frustrated… You feel like Sunday school is outdated, or you hate the concept of home groups. You place so much value on your pet issues that you ignore all of the good that your church is doing…

Or you are a pastor. You are concerned about the slow spiritual growth of the congregation. You can see how things could be better, and you want them to change as soon as possible. You are so tired of being held back by old ways or being pushed into new ways. You feel like you are constantly dealing with silly issues instead of the real work that you feel called to.

To all of you, I say it again: have patience with your church.

Let’s imagine for a moment that Emerald’s coach had no patience… After a few pitches, the coach starts to get red in the face. He turns to another player on the field and makes a comment about how bad Emerald is at baseball. Then he gets on Facebook and posts a status update about how he hates pitching the ball to her. He marches up to the plate and tells Emerald that if she doesn’t figure out how to hit the ball pretty soon, he’s walking off of the field, and he’s never coming back.

Do you think any of those things will make Emerald hit the ball on the next pitch?

Only twelve steps…
Non Sequitur – Click image for a larger view.

Monday Picks ~ 3-13-2017

This is some stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

Passing the Baton of Leadership to MillennialsDan Reiland
For this to work, we must all be trustworthy in character and competence, or the process of a healthy and fruitful transition breaks down. The moment it becomes about you or me, instead of the greater we, tension takes over, and territorialism kicks in. A stalled church is the result.

If that happens, the Boomers will try to protect their power, and the Millennials will seek to take it. This would be an epic failure in individual churches and for the Church overall.

It all comes down to individual people. We can talk regarding generations and movements, but in the end, it’s people. It will always come down to two people in the moment. It’s personal. For example, with Bob the Boomer and Mark the Millennial – the question on the table will be: Do they trust each other?

My parents celebrate their 65th anniversary next week…

Marriage and the MountainTrevin Wax
http://d1nwfrzxhi18dp.cloudfront.net/uploads/resource_library/library_entry/promo_image/2386/20170310_Mountain-1888x960.jpgIn our time, many people see the wedding as the capstone, or the summit. You start out at the bottom of the mountain when you meet someone with similar interests, and then you decide to climb together. Perhaps you live together for a while, to give your relationship a more serious try. Eventually, if you’re lucky, you and your partner arrive at the summit—the wedding day.

Marriage as the mountaintop. That’s why almost every romantic comedy ends with the wedding—the celebration of a relationship that has endured all the trials of dating and romance (that you can fit into two hours!) and has now achieved success.

The Bible flips this picture upside down. The wedding isn’t the summit; it’s the base of the mountain. It’s the starting point, not the goal. And the pinnacle to which we climb is even grander and more beautiful than the wedding reception…

…I wonder if, instead of seeing the wedding ceremony as the pinnacle of a relationship, we ought to see the fiftieth anniversary celebration as the summit.

This message is worth WAY more than the 15 minutes it takes to watch this video…

I Grew Up in the Westboro Baptist Church. Here’s Why I LeftMegan Phelps-Roper

A few quotes…

“We celebrate tolerance and diversity more than at any other time in memory, and still we grow more and more divided.”

“We’ve broken the world into us and them, only emerging from our bunkers long enough to lob rhetorical grenades at the other camp…I remember this path. It will not take us where we want to go.”

“I thought my rightness justified my rudeness.”

“The end of this spiral of rage and blame begins with one person who refuses to indulge these destructive, seductive impulses. We just have to decide that it’s going to start with us.”

Bad Pun Monday…
Pearls Before Swine – Click image for a larger view.

Monday Picks ~ 2-13-2017

This is some stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

This may not seem like a romantic Valentine’s post, but this is love…

The 5 Weightiest Words of LoveTrevin Wax
LightstockWith all the glitz and glamour surrounding a couple’s special day, it’s easy to focus on the decorations and dresses, while overlooking the most valuable moment of the day—the costliest words spoken between a husband and wife.

“Till death do we part.”

We’re so familiar with the phrase that we forget how strange it sounds. What the man and woman are saying is: One of us will stand at the grave of the other. In other words: I’m with you until your last breath or you’re with me until mine, whichever comes first.

In the middle of this picturesque celebration of two becoming one, death suddenly crowds into the frame. Rightly understood, marriage is about both life and death. The wedding day is inextricably tied to the funeral service…

The weightiest words of love—the vow unto death—strike against the idea that we can “offer ourselves without the peril of committing ourselves.” The true offering of oneself is exclusive, and this is what makes marriage so costly, so adventurous, so glorious and hard.

Yes, there are temporary thrills for those who try to have love without commitment, but “there is one thrill that is known only to the soldier who fights for his own flag, to the aesthetic who starves himself for his own illumination, to the lover who makes finally his own choice. And it is this transfiguring self-discipline that makes the vow a truly sane thing.”

Does your church spread “fake news” about itself?

#FakeNews Your Guest Services Team is Spreading
Danny Franks
News ends up as fake news if there’s no substance to it. If there aren’t facts to back it up…if reality doesn’t match the representation…if our talk doesn’t match our actions…it is, ultimately, fake news.

So what are the #fakenews topics that we might be guilty of spreading as a guest services team? Here are a few…


Hawaii’s ‘Lava Fire Hose’ Is Back at It AgainCara Giaimo

The 61g lava flow, which has earned the nickname “the fire hose,” is pouring out of Hawaii’s Kilauea Volcano. This volcano, which last erupted 34 years ago, is constantly sending leftover lava through tubes and into the ocean. But it’s rare that a dispensary is as visible, and as long-lasting, as this guy…

Us vs. Them
Wrong Hands

Weekend Picks ~ 2-10-2017

This is some stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

Encouragement for church leadership…

Are You on Track if You Lead a Church of Less Than 100?
Ed Stetzer
Are You on Track if You Lead a Church of Less Than 100?…church planters need to know that the expectations they see on conference platforms are unrealistic. Pastors need to remember that ministry in the past should not serve as the only measuring stick for ministry in the present. If we don’t remember this, then planters and pastors may see the tremendous success on the stage or in the past and assume they are failures if they don’t reach those virtually impossible-to-reach levels.

It is past time that churches measure success based on the current realities of their cultural context instead of past glories or present-day anomalies.

I appreciated this short interview with Keith Getty…

The Reformation Changed the Way We Sing
Collin Hansen interviews Keith Getty
Luther’s context was similar to ours in some ways—a generation of somewhat-new believers not used to singing. We live in a world today with more Christians than ever before, most of whom have little theological understanding of why we sing, or experience in how to do it. Luther taught why we sing. He also curated songs that gave people a deep, rich understanding of the God of the Bible and the gospel he offers.

This is an excellent article about how to have the conversation no parent ever wants to have, but most likely will…

How to React the First Time Your Child Admits Watching PornJohn Fort
dad holds son safeA parent’s first reaction is so critical. The first words out of our mouth, the first body language we express, has an enormous impact on any future success we may have helping our child. It’s worth thinking about and trying to plan for…

The most important take away for any child in this scenario is to experience that Mom and Dad are safe people to talk about sexual temptations with. If we do not leave our children feeling safe after our first discussion about an exposure that occurred, we are likely cutting off any future chance of them listening to our advice on the matter.

Just in time for Valentine’s Day. I appreciate this article a lot…

If You’re Looking for Romance, It’s Probably Right in Front of YouMelissa Edgington
Someday when I’m sitting in a rocking chair looking back over our life together, it won’t be the big trips or the diamond rings that I remember most. It’ll be all the little things. The small gestures that he makes every day to communicate how much he loves me. If you’re searching for romance in your marriage, chances are you’re ignoring the most romantic things about your life. Stop and think about it, and appreciate all of the little ways that you are being romanced every day. I promise it’ll make marriage more fun and meaningful if you do. Be grateful for what you have and stop pining for a version of marriage that Hollywood dreamed up. Most of the people who wrote that stuff are divorced. Just saying.

The People’s Choice…
Bizarro – Click image for a larger view.

Present Your Bodies: Eyes

Photo by Katy C

“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”  –Romans 12:1-2 ESV

I’ve always been intrigued with the phrase, “a living sacrifice.” When you’re speaking with a Jewish audience, and you use the word “sacrifice,” they’re going to imagine a dead one. The act of killing is part of the process. A living sacrifice is a whole new concept.

And it’s a tricky one. Because a living sacrifice is a whole lot harder to deal with than a dead one. A living sacrifice keeps wanting to crawl off the altar. It must be offered daily.

Maybe hourly.

Maybe, if the part of the body you’re sacrificing to God is your eyes, then maybe that sacrifice needs to be minute by minute.

What about our eyes? How can we offer our eyes as a living sacrifice to God?

The psalmist says:

I will not look with approval
on anything that is vile. –Psalm 101:3

The word “vile” means wicked, perverted, offensive, disgusting, cheap, or degrading. Do we allow ourselves to look at any of that stuff? Do our eyes find their way to things that fit any of those descriptions?

I almost decided to skip talking about pornography here because it seemed a little too obvious. Everyone knows that we should keep our eyes away from that stuff, right?

The thing is, every second $3,075.64 is being spent on pornography, and 28,258 internet users are viewing pornography.

That’s right, every second!

Pornography revenue in the United States exceeds the combined revenue of ABC, NBC and CBS. So maybe it bears talking about. Especially when you consider that, according to a 2014 survey of self-identified adult Christian men, 77% say they look at pornography at least monthly.

It’s a problem.

How can we “present our bodies as a living sacrifice” when our eyes (and presumably other parts as well) are being used in this manner? How can we “be transformed by the renewing of our minds” when so much of our mental energy is given over to the god of lust?

There’s something else to consider for those of us who are married men. The apostle Peter tells us in 1 Peter 3:7 that we should treat our wives with respect so that nothing hinders our prayers. What is more disrespectful to your wife than to look lustfully at another woman? Not only does it impact our marriages and our thoughts, but it hinders our prayers, as well.

Men, this must stop.

We must keep our eyes from crawling off the altar.

But wait, there’s more…

It seems to me that, if we’re presenting our eyes to God as a “living sacrifice,” there are some other things we must consider.

For example:
As we scroll through our Twitter feed or your Facebook newsfeed, what links grab our eyes? Am I a sucker for the outrageous “click bait”?

Do I fall for the “fake news” that seems to justify my already formed opinion, simply because it takes too much discipline to search for the truth?

Or, how about this:
Do I have a hard time seeing the good…

…in another person?

…in another race?

…in my own church?

…in almost anything?

God doesn’t look at the outside, he looks at the heart. It’s a skill we need to learn. Obviously, we’ll never be able to see within another person the way God can, but we can learn to look deeper than we do.

I’m sure this isn’t exhaustive, but it’s a start.

We just have to learn to take an honest look within.

It’s a matter of presenting our eyes as a living sacrifice.


You can read what I wrote about offering our hands here.

Monday Picks ~ 12-5-2016


This is some stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

I found this very challenging…

Love Is Never a WasteJared Wilson
loveWe think of those who have tried to love someone back from the brink only to see the person eventually go over. Certainly love fails in these circumstances, right?

I don’t think so. I think that’s true only if we are thinking of our love in terms of a results-based value. But that is not what Jesus is telling Peter. And that’s not what Paul is telling us.

Jesus does not offer Peter a loophole. There is no Forgiveness Contingency Plan. There’s no limited time warranty. Whether the person you’re loving embraces your forgiveness or not, you keep forgiving. Whether the person you love is changed by your love or not, you keep on loving.

In this sense, I don’t think “Love never fails” means “Love always gets the result the lover wants.” I think it means what it says: Love is not a failure. Love is not a failure regardless of the results.

This is why: Because God is not a failure, and God is love.

This may not be what you think it is…

You Could Be Doing So MuchNicholas McDonald
Image result for neverending story reading
“You could be living the life of your dreams.”

This is a powerful and challenging piece. Some may find it controversial. It shouldn’t be…

Enough Is EnoughGary Thomas
Abusive MenIf the cost of saving a marriage is destroying a woman, the cost is too high. God loves people more than he loves institutions…

The danger of what I’m saying is clear and even a little scary to me, because no marriage is easy. Every marriage must overcome hurt, pain, and sin. … I’m not talking about the common struggles of living with a common sinner, or every man and woman could pursue divorce… Charging someone with “abuse” when it doesn’t truly apply is almost as evil as committing abuse, so we need to be careful we don’t bear “false witness” against a spouse to convince ourselves and others that we can legitimately pursue divorce to get out of a difficult marriage…

Our loyalty to marriage is good and noble and true. But when loyalty to a relational structure allows evil to continue it is a false loyalty, even an evil loyalty.

Christian leaders and friends, we have to see that some evil men are using their wives’ Christian guilt and our teaching about the sanctity of marriage as a weapon to keep harming them.

I’ve participated in The Lord’s Supper pretty much every single week since 1962, but I had never considered this question. I very much appreciate this insight…

He Didn’t Choose the Lambhttp://gentlereformation.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/bread-wine.jpgI found myself wondering why did the Lamb not choose the lamb to make his point when he instituted the Lord’s Supper at a Passover meal? Why bread? … All the symbolism was there. The lamb was there. But he chose the bread. Or more particularly he didn’t choose the lamb. I grant that bread has a lot of history and symbolism in scripture too, but this seems more deliberate. Why?

Thanks to Tim Fall for this important and often missed distinction…


Flight delay…

My Picks for Thursday 5-5-2016

Picks Thursday

This is the stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

The church just needs to be the church in the “new” America…

Good Morning, AmerikaRay Ortlund
amerika“But let me propose now, for starters, one key aspect of a new church life for our new America.  I will summarize it in one word: real.  The real Jesus of real grace for real sinners.  It is time now — not a year from now but right now — to search ourselves and our ministries asking, Is what I am doing in my church real?  Is the Jesus I preach the real, biblical Jesus, in all his grace and glory?  Is my voice in the community real, credible, honest, or am I mouthing what people expect me to say, even what I expect to say?  Does my church offer other sinners a grace so obviously real that, though it might be refused, it cannot be denied?  And so forth.  The questions are endless, unsettling, freeing…

…We might not find a candidate on the ballot this November that our consciences can vote for.  But nothing is stopping us from being pastors who walk in a gentle honesty so real that it flows out into our churches and through our churches into our nation.  And the blood of Jesus might work some miracles of cleansing to surprise us all.”

Ten Pieces of Advice Paul Never Gave to Church Leaders
Rob Tims
Concrete room with arrow on the wall

A few my favorites:

5. Follow your heart. Nothing is more trustworthy than what you ultimately feel to be true.

6. Do what you must in order to have as many people like you as possible. God works most effectively through powerful and popular personalities.

9. Birds of a feather flock together. Church diversity is for the birds.

I’ve noticed this trend, and I agree that it needs to stop…

Stop Calling Your Wife HotBarnabas Piper
“Fellas, calling your wife hot to other people is awkward. We can’t agree with you. That would be really weird. We can’t disagree with you. That would be really mean. Ignoring you is rude, but it’s probably our best option in this case. Do you really want us trying to determine if your wife is, in fact, hot? …

…You think your wife is hot. In fact, you think she’s the hottest just as you should. But what if other guys don’t? Do you really want to raise that issue? And what if they do? Do you really want to know, or to bring it to their minds? Your wife is your standard of beauty, or at least she should be. But every time you call her hot (which refers exclusively to physical beauty, unlike “beautiful” or “lovely” or “amazing”, all of which can encompass personality and character) you are making her a standard of beauty for others. You are talking about her objectively; that is to say, you are objectifying her. Bad idea.”

Note that this one is written by an 18 year old…

Five Awkward Conversations Every Teen Needs to Have with Their ParentsJaquelle Crowe
Five Awkward Conversations Every Teen Needs to Have with Their Parents“Awkwardness is something we humans love to avoid. Nobody likes how it makes us feel. But for Christ-following teenagers and parents, awkwardness is an inescapable part of learning. Jesus himself could be called the master of awkward conversations. He modeled the reality that hard conversations are necessary for the sake of gospel growth. His young disciples in first-century Palestine learned this, and his young disciples in modern-day America need to learn it, too.

As a teenage Christ-follower, I want to share with you five awkward and sanctifying conversations I believe every teenager and parent should have…”

I think this could be an interesting series of articles…

The Bestsellers: The Prayer of JabezTim Challies
Prayer of Jabez
“In this series I am looking at the history and impact of some of the Christian books that have sold more than a million copies—no small feat when the average Christian books sells only a few thousand. We will encounter books by a cast of characters ranging from Joshua Harris, Randy Alcorn and David Platt all the way to Joel Osteen, Bruce Wilkinson and William Young. Today we look at a surprise bestseller that is one of the very few to have sold more than ten million copies…

…The Prayer of Jabez was an immediate bestseller and, according to some sources, became the fastest-selling book to that point in history. By 2001 the book had sold nearly two million copies and was awarded the Platinum Book Award. A whole industry of peripheral products grew up around it and many of them also earned awards: The Prayer of Jabez Devotional and The Prayer of Jabez for Teens both received the Gold Book Award that year. In 2003 The Prayer of Jabez for Kids and The Prayer of Jabez for Teens were both awarded the Platinum Book Award while The Prayer of Jabez for Women and The Prayer of Jabez Bible Study attained Gold status. In 2008 The Prayer of Jabez crossed the 10 million threshold and received the Diamond Book Award, putting it in the rarest of company. Only four other Christian books before or since have surpassed ten million sold.”

The discovery of a major evolutionary link…
Click image for a larger view. Source: Non Sequitur