Weekly Once-Over (08.27.2014)

Three Ways We Make It Difficult For People Turning To God: When the gospel occupies the center, we can live in unity even with those who do not share all of our convictions. Only the gospel has that kind of unifying power.

On Platforms, Self-Promotion, And Pleasure Complete: There was a man named John. He was a man, a voice, a friend of the bridegroom, and a witness. And there has arisen no one greater than him. May God help us to live our lives online and offline with the same passion, humility, and determination to have Christ seen through us, not us seen through our platforms.

Ferguson: The Gospel Frees Us To Listen: Because of sin, listening is harder than it should be. But for those changed by the gospel, listening should come (super)naturally. The gospel will surely call us to more than just listening in the current moment – but not less. Listening is where change must begin. So let’s not miss a God-given opportunity to show a watching world the power and grace of the gospel by listening well to one another.

Living Sent (For The Relationally Challenged): living sent does require some intentionality on our part. Who is God calling you to intentionally pursue and build relationships with – even this summer? Who are the top five people in your life that you could intentionally invest in, pray for and pursue this coming season? Of those you already have relationships with, what would it look like to lovingly, winsomely and boldly speak to them about the gospel? What are your first steps of faith as you seek to live sent? What follows are some suggestions as you seek to live an intentionally sent life: 

College Students: Discover God's Will For Your Life: College students are always asking what God’s will is for their life. And the closer they get to graduating, the louder that question gets. There are two ways to hear that question. You can hear it as a heart seeking after the idol of certainty and security—and using God to do it. Or you can hear it as young people legitimately desiring to serve God with their talents...

3 Steps To Raising Disciples: Parents have to work hard to build a Christ-centered home and not a kid-centered home, because a kid-centered home produces self-centered adults. Parents have to constantly strive to take their kids out of the center of the family and remind them that Christ is the center.

Christians Can Be Terrible - You Should Know This Going In: Christians can be terrible. As a reader of the New Testament, this doesn’t surprise me. One of the major premises of the Christian faith is that humans are so flawed, so broken, so rebellious, and so unable to redeem themselves that the eternal Son had to incarnate himself, live, die, and rise again in order to fix them (Romans 1-8). I suppose what does shock me is that Christians are still surprised when other Christians are terrible.

Living And Leading From Grace: But in May, just as I do every year, I looked ahead to the summer season with a mix of apprehension and relief. Relief because we don't have to rush from the moment the alarm beeps, and because summer in Virginia means great weather (even greater this year!) and lots of outdoor activities after cold winter days. But there is also always the apprehension: what we will do with all that unstructured time? Will I have the patience and energy that I need not just to entertain my kids but to enjoy them as well? And how I will get anything at all done?


photo credit: Lotus Carroll via photopin cc