This is a story about two young men who were friends, roommates, and pastors. In other words, this is a story about jealousy.
Do we have confidence in our savior Jesus? Are we secure in the fact that Jesus will have us?
My self-esteem, good or bad, cannot sustain me. It’s a toothpick house in a tornado.
When his dog was suffering a particularly noisome barking fit, Martin supposedly preached this gospel implication to him, exhorting the pooch this way: “Never mind, little Hans . . . Thou too, in the Resurrection, shalt have a little golden tail.”
It is amazing to me that my helplessness before God mirrors the helpless of my two week-old son.
He is not robbed of any glory, but his name is now surrounded with brighter lustre than ever.
What should you put on that master list for life? Only one thing is necessary: to praise God for who He is and for what he has done for us in Christ.
Peter introduces his letter to God’s chosen people with a glimpse of the front porch light.
We familyolaters take what most of us consider the most important thing in our lives and give it the weight of our worship in a way that is both dishonorable and unsustainable. And we end up living "Thus saith the family" rather than "Thus saith the Lord."
For all the celebrations to be remembered, the occasions of suffering are the dates that stick with me. It was then, when the day came that she would call - or we’d get in the car with a warm meal in the back seat. A note would get dropped in the mail, a meal on the doorstep to say: you are loved, you are not forgotten, and neither are they.…
Like a kindergartner learning his numbers, so do we practice the discipline of counting . . .
To a great extent in spiritual things we get what we expect of the Lord.
Other than in temporary moments of devotional solitude, there was never a time when Jesus was not with his men. After Jesus called his disciples, he had them with him doing ministry.
The beauty of the gospel is that it hijacks our worship and aims it at the One in whom our worship finds its consummation of joy.
You have enemies as you try to live as a content man. Most of the time we think the enemies are from without—people around us and circumstances upon us. But the true enemies of contentment are within in us, which is where contentment is either fed or starved.
It's the wave that provides the power.
Though some denominations historically have wrongly understood the call to moral holiness and perfection to mean that sinners can attain perfection on this earth, the pursuit of holiness is no less important.
May it never been that you get to the point where you believe that all things are possible for you—that you can do anything on your own.
On Halloween night 1998 I threw a party in my apartment. I had girls, booze, weed, and cocaine. On that Halloween night, I was geared up for what I expected to be a good time. But my friend Dave didn’t respond like I expected he would.
A faithful minister cares little what people think of him.
God has done his mightiest works by the meanest instruments: that is a fact most true of all God’s works—Peter the fisherman at Pentecost, Luther the humble monk at the Reformation, Whitefield the potboy of the Old Bell Inn at Gloucester in the time of the last century’s revival; and so it must be to the end.
I often misremember. I’m prone to long for Egypt because I forget the truth about God’s character and faithfulness.
Christian, no one might know what internal fear, insecurity, or idolatry the Holy Spirit is convicting you of and walking you through. And because it’s internal, you might be tempted to put it to the side in favor of something seemingly more flashy and exciting. But don’t neglect His work. Embrace it. Because the storm is coming.
This is the cosmic love and wisdom of God for you . . .
We must become desperate to find favor in the eyes of the LORD.
The next time you enter the church to fellowship with God’s people, go with a sacrifice of brokenness.
Why does Christlikeness always go and get in the way of a good two cents?
Becoming more conscious that Jesus walked isn’t perhaps a profound revelation to you, but is necessary for you who fill every moment trying to attain maximum productivity. It isn’t Jesus-like to be harried in life, even if it seems noble to others.
If Christ the King has come, and He has proclaimed that the kingdom has arrived, then where is it?
We planted our church over six years ago. There is a church where there used to not be one, yes, but we're still working really hard and sometimes it feels like we're spinning our wheels. When is it going to get easier? When is God going to do something big and miraculous instead of the small and incremental?
I share in the victory of Christ.
I didn't want to get married. But I knew I was turning away a gift from God . . .
Too many churches still treat church growth as a competition.
Cursed are you when others love you and accept you and say all kinds of good about you because you have moderate, tolerant views of a safe Jesus.
We are always about ten feet from the edge of that moral failure cliff.
I have a son. I did not father him, nor did my wife give birth to him. Yet, he is my son.
Believe, I pray thee, and rest thee on the blood-sprinkled words of this wondrous Book.
I wonder how many marriages would be saved if everyone could get a glimpse into our email accounts? What if all our private messages were aired for all to see? Would we still have friends?
Without the gospel all riches is poverty.
Because our churches are filled with, and led by, people who have caved under far less pressure than what Esther faced. We have all been guilty of hiding our heavenly identity and submitting to the faithless systems of life around us.
In order to have great heavenly riches we have to become poor in spirit; now, in order to find comfort, we must mourn.
If we dig into Acts 1:8 we'll unlock a plethora of insight into what authentic "missional living" looks like.
Fighting fear out of fear doesn’t work.
God was at work. The Holy Spirit powerfully wielded the Word in that place. I have no doubt that hundreds, if not thousands, of lives and ministries were altered in profound ways over those four days. Then I came home.
Let me take you back to Narnia for a second . . .
I come to church and remember how awesome God is, how wonderful my salvation is, and how glorious heaven is, and then, after leaving, I act like my world is falling apart at the first hint of difficulty.
Esther's first nine verses make Xerxes out to be pretty intimidating. It's obvious from the lavish banquet throws and the riches he has and the way he micromanages absolutely everything that he is one powerful dude. But then the wheels fall off.
Though we might rather just have a happy, coffee cup verse of the day, God in his wisdom only gives such hope and encouragement in the context of our fallen reality.
There is a difference between sharing and learning. Don’t confuse the two, thinking you have learned what you have shared.
We can look to Jesus and see a Savior who did it the good and right way, and we can be humbled under the weight of His sacrifice and emboldened to feel deeply for others in light of His compassion.