Here and There (May 3)

11025637_377146362478564_6576681574742774595_n

The Emperor Of All Maladies  –  A comparison of Cancer and Sin.  Well worth the time to read.

It Is Insane To Kill Human Beings Because Of Their Cognitive Abilities  – “Every human being of every ability is made in the image of God.”

A God Greater Than Google  – “We have an all-knowing, all-seeing, all-wise God, but most of the time we’d rather entrust our questions to the internet. After all, the god at our fingertips is visible, controllable, instant, and seemingly omniscient, at least omniscient enough for us. But God didn’t invent the internet to replace himself.”

Good Things Come In Small Packages  – “Size isn’t the most important thing. What matters is what’s coming from the pulpit and the commitment of the people who congregate. And we can each make a difference wherever we are, to be a sincere disciple of Christ, no matter how big our church is.”

How Can I Get Better At Evangelism?  – (Hint: the answer is pretty much the same for Evangelism as it is for anything else: savoring Christ and slaying self.)

Discipline: Strict or Grace-Based? Somewhere In Between  – “The definition of self-government is the idea that a person learns to command himself, his impulses, his work habits, his emotions, His intellect and talents and rule over his will in a productive way. Children can begin this at a very early age, but it is also of utmost importance to adults–as one cannot be a mature believer unless one has mastered self-government and self-control and patience. The idea behind self-government is that all of us have a power and authority over life that comes from within that can help us to master problems, obstacles, and can use our self-will to achieve great things. Adults who make excuses for their lives or always blame others for their unhappiness or irresponsibility, find themselves like the little children, unruly, unhappy, and whining always about life.”

10986907_10153386569477262_2544255493069643480_o

Here and There (April 8)

1939441_367686190091248_172986297069585948_n

Notable Kindle deals:  The Christ-Centered Exposition Series ExodusEzra-NehemiahSong of SongsMatthewMarkGalatiansEphesians1&2 ThessaloniansJames1, 2, 3 John ($2.99 each). The Underestimated Gospel by Together for the Gospel ($2.99); The Measure of Success by Carolyn McCulley ($2.99); Gospel-Centered Teaching by Trevin Wax ($1.99); Heroes and Monsters by Josh Riebock ($2.99).

How God Defines Success  – Hint: It’s probably not the same way the world does…

Becky Kopitzke writes on the remedy she discovered for all her husband’s annoying habits in When Hubby Leaves His Socks on the Floor.

A powerful article from Rosaria Butterfield on The Dead End of Sexual Sin  – “How should we think about sin that has become a daily part of our identity?”

Young Mothers, You Need Friends  – “Unless we’re careful, young moms, we will wake up one day and find that all of those incredibly fulfilling friendships that once overflowed in our pre-baby lives have melted away, gradually and without much fanfare.  We will feel the weird invisible weight of loneliness, and we may even try to force our kids or our parents or our husbands to fill those roles that should be uniquely set aside for dear friends.”

Help Me Face Today  – “The more we recognize fear as sin, combat it with Scripture, and give it over to our Father, the more Christlike we become. Clinging to God’s promises, we repeat them to unwanted thoughts that can put us through a terrible day before our feet ever leave the covers.”

Some reminders on Why We Are Going To Get Up And Do It All Again Tomorrow  – “And we will find strength in remembering that motherhood isn’t our job. It is our joy. It is not our obligation, but it is our opportunity. And these moments that seem unending, will all be over before we know it. You’ve got this, friend. We’re going to make it together.”

Good Friends Bring Friends to Jesus  – “If you believe the truth about who Jesus is and what Jesus has done then, to the extant that you care about your friends and want to see Jesus honored, you will tell them about him. This is what good friends have always done.”

“Our problem is not that we desire happiness. No, our problem is that we continue to foolishly believe that we can attain it apart from him. We think that if we just try hard enough, the next time we’ll get it right (whatever it is) and we’ll be happy. Instead of pushing through to the true source of all joy and happiness, we sinfully believe the false promises of lesser gods.”
― Elyse M. FitzpatrickBecause He Loves Me: How Christ Transforms Our Daily Life

1900722_10152746965766961_1112593002760632086_o

Here and There (April 1)

Quotation-Nancy-Leigh-Demoss-god-Meetville-Quotes-99580

Deals for Kindle:   How People Change by Paul Tripp & Timothy Lane ($2.99)

My Fearful Night of Shortsightedness  – “God cannot be summed up in one character trait. He is both powerful and personal. Transcendent and immanent. I could not make sense of my fear until I saw both sides of this coin.”

Kevin DeYoung writes in Not That Bright  – “You don’t have to bear the burdens of the planet, just bear witness to the one who can. You don’t have die for the sins of the world, just introduce people to the one who has. You are not the light. Ouch, and hallelujah!”

Some help for those in the toddler trenches with Self-Control for ToddlersThe Christian and Common Grace  – “Temporal sufferings, like temporal blessings, are an opportunity to bring glory to God. If we who have Christ as our model don’t believe that, a lost and dying world never will.”

A thoughtful article, Beware the Unloved Women  – “Jesus He died to pay for sins, that we might have forgiveness of sins. Then He rose again, proving He is God and we can believe what He promised. To the unloved woman who repents from coping with her longings in her own way and determines to follow Christ, He gives a new heart with godly desires. Then He gives power to have a gentle and quiet spirit and to love others. Trust in Him and you will know the love of God Himself.”

Never Sorry Enough  – “As is so often the case in life, I was holding someone else to standard I could not hold myself. I can never be sorry enough. He can never be sorry enough. But I can imitate God in granting free and full forgiveness and in letting the matter rest.”

truebeauty

Here & There (March 27 )

1797491_371735069686360_7463316958983935949_n

The Bare Essentials: What I Tell My Daughters About Modesty  – “Modesty has far more to do with our hearts, than it does with our clothing. Anyone getting all caught up in the apparel is probably missing the point.”

The Influence of Godly Mothers and Grandmothers  – “There are many things we can pass on to our children but the most important is the example of our faith in Jesus.”

When Life Doesn’t Make Sense, Follow the Flour Mounds  – “As Christians we often expect—for ourselves and for others—that God will give us all the answers eventually. Sure, we might have to wait patiently, but if we just hang in there, God will show us how it all fits together. We throw around “God works all things together for good” (Rom. 8:28), all the while implying that the fulfillment of this verse includes an explanation. But that is not the wisdom of God.”

He Knows  – “The questions remain.  The mourning.  The various hurts that come with being human.  The paralyzing fear.  The brokenness.  The exhaustion. Take heart.  God knows.  He knows how this is all going to work out.  How all of the pieces fit together.  He knows which questions we haven’t thought of asking yet, and He knows the answer to every single one.  God knows what He is doing in your life. And, He knew generations before you were born.”

Witch Doctors, Football and Understanding Africa – “You cannot understand Africa until you understand this worldview.  You cannot understand African politics, African poverty, African culture, and even the African Church until you understand animism.”

hqdefault

I will praise You Lord my God
Even in my brokenness
I will praise You Lord
I will praise You Lord my God
Even in my desperation
I will praise You Lord

And I can’t understand
All that You allow
I just can’t see the reason
But my life is in Your hands
And though I cannot see You
I choose to trust You

Even when my heart is torn I will praise (trust) You Lord
Even when I feel deserted I will praise (trust) You Lord
Even in my darkest valley I will praise (trust) You Lord
And when my world is shattered and it seems all hope is gone
Yet I will praise You Lord

I will trust You Lord my God
Even in my loneliness
I will trust You Lord
I will trust You Lord my God
Even when I cannot hear You
I will trust You Lord

And I will not forget
That You hung on a cross
Lord You bled and died for me
And if I have to suffer
I know that You’ve been there
And I know that You’re here now

Here and There (March 9)

10998391_364846570375210_2754150747520906856_n

Christian Hoover shares on her decision to Stop Trying to be “All the Moms”  –  “Trying to be all the moms makes us feel better, until it doesn’t, and then we vow to do more and try harder.”

Ray Ortlund writes on  7 Ways We Can Guard and Repair Relationships.

Abiding in Christ Through Suffering and Loss  –  “So when I became a widow I had a few choices. I could wallow in self-pity, and believe me I struggled with this. Or I could run to the Lord. I could embrace my fears—and I struggled here as well—or I could embrace my Lord. I am happy to say that by his grace, I chose to abide, to rest in Him. I came to Him weary, brokenhearted, and heavy-laden, helpless to do life on my own. And he showered me with love and mercy and comfort and strength to do things I never ever even thought I would have to do.”

The Frangible Heart  – “Every peacemaker I know has had a broken heart. Yet, when hearts break in faith, trusting in the grace of God, we are not destroyed but rather strengthened for the mission at hand. When we trust that God’s grace is sufficient for us in our trials, and His power is made perfect in our human weakness, we can delight in the face of the conflict-related wounds we experience (2 Corinthians 12:9-10). When broken, frangible hearts respond in faith, hope, and love proclaiming the beautiful message of God’s love through Christ.”

Find Your Fulfillment in Faithfulness  – Part three of J.D. Greear’s excellent series Everyday Faith.  This one is addressed (for the most part) to young women.  “So if for a time God has assigned you to care for children and establish a home, find your fulfillment in knowing you have been a faithful servant, not in the praise of the world. If Jesus could find fulfillment in washing feet, you can find it in wiping butts for a season, too.”

Anna Marie Cox writes an interesting article on Why I’m Coming Out as a Christian  – “I’m not scared that non-believers will make me feel like an outcast. I’m scared that Christians will.”

steadfastloveofthelord

Here and There (March 6 )

10924776_10153022621004643_1614363452147132899_n

Kindle Deals:  Practical Theology for Women: How Knowing God Makes a Difference in Our Daily Lives by Wendy Alsup  $2.99

Three Muslim Misconceptions about Christians  – I appreciated this article even more after having just finished Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus.  J.D. Greear looks at “a set of misconceptions that most Muslims have about Christians that keep them from even considering the gospel.”

The Dangers of Pet Sins  – “Pet sins are those sins we believe we have domesticated. We view them as small and insignificant. We don’t fight against them, we feed them, and in some ways they make us feel good. But there is no such things as domesticated sin. All sin, even our “pet sins” are dangerous.”
Josh Hamilton and the Monster that Hunts Us All  – And while on the topic of Pet Sins, “Temptation never takes a day off. We are all recovering sinners. Killing sin is a daily vocation for believers. As the Puritan John Owen put it, we must be daily killing sin or it will kill us (Rom. 8:13).”
How Not to be a Negative Person  –  Arabah Joy reminding “We can either magnify our circumstances….or we can magnify our God.”
Pantheistic Panic  – On his Wednesday’s Word, Paul Tripp writes:  “Every day I bump shoulders with confused and fearful non-Christians who try to make sense out of their life by worshiping a multiplicity of gods and who try to find meaning and purpose by employing a variety of futile tactics…Had it not been for the intervening grace of God, I would be just like them, and even though I now know the Truth and worship the living God, my fickle heart is still tempted to worship the same false gods they worship. And, what a wasted opportunity! Could it be that God put these non-Christians in my life, not for the purpose of annoying me, but so that I may be an instrument of revelation to their blind eyes?”
Two Words to Stop Self Condemnation  – Well worth the read.  Christine Hoover writes: “Instead of cycling back to vows and self-effort, we must learn to look at our insufficiencies and then add two words on the end of them: But God or But Christ.”
Tears in My Life Cereal  – Kara Tippetts over at Mundane Faithfulness lives in the reality of “But God or But Christ”.

10983131_10152662434185222_2888531737807039284_n

Here and There (February 9)

eeliot2

Free eBooks from Desiring God Ministries – “Over the past two years, the team at desiringGod.org has published a series of ebooks made available to our readers free of charge. The ebooks range from material written by John Piper, individual biographies, and multi-author volumes, with each one downloadable in three electronic formats (PDF, MOBI for Kindle, and EPUB for iBooks and other readers). Some also include a paperback option as well.”

I’ve been abused; Am I still pure?  – “Purity is a heart’s desire to honor the Lord that extends to our choices. If you have been sexually abused, it is not your purity that has been taken, but your innocence. You’ve paid a heavy price, and I don’t want to gloss over that. It makes the momma bear in me what to stand up on her hind legs and roar! But it also makes me want to show you, that there is no wound God’s love cannot heal.”

Cross-Centered Love Stories  –  “Just because someone desires to be married doesn’t automatically mean he or she is being selfish.  The desire for a human love story was given to us by God.  He is the One who invented romance in the first place, and He is very much behind the idea of marriage.  But when the pursuit of our own happiness becomes a higher priority than surrendering our lives to God and trusting Him with each detail of our lives, we are missing the mark.”

10 Ways to Show love to Your Kids Without Spending Money  – Great suggestions here!

Adam4d with another thought provoking cartoon on sharing our faith with others.

Along those same lines, here is a quote on video from atheist Penn Jillette, of the magician duo, Penn & Teller. “I’ve always said that I don’t respect people who don’t proselytize. I don’t respect that at all. If you believe that there’s a heaven and a hell, and people could be going to hell or not getting eternal life, and you think that it’s not really worth telling them this because it would make it socially awkward—and atheists who think people shouldn’t proselytize and who say just leave me along and keep your religion to yourself—how much do you have to hate somebody to not proselytize? How much do you have to hate somebody to believe everlasting life is possible and not tell them that?  “I mean, if I believed, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that a truck was coming at you, and you didn’t believe that truck was bearing down on you, there is a certain point where I tackle you. And this is more important than that.”

God Didn’t Design us for Busy  –  “The world says: My Life + More Work = Financial Success and Lasting Happiness. God offers us a different equation for a true success and a purposeful life: My Life + God’s Way = Living On Purpose.  God’s way is the way of purpose. Of living intentionally in order to love others. God’s way is the way of rest coupled with meaningful work. God’s way is the way of true balance and lasting success.  God’s way is not about us. God’s way means less of us and more of him. God’s way isn’t always easy, but it’s worth it.”

Our Worst Day Ever (and New Morning Mercy)  – A beautifully honest and encouraging message.  I needed to be reminded of this today and just in case I’m not the only one, I share this with you.

Fatigue is not a Sin  – Reading this article reminded me of Ajith Fernando’s To Serve Is To Suffer article, where he talks about using his gifts in “the fog of fatigue”.

eeliot 10470824_10152620356512694_6805802112579676790_n