November 4, 2014

Some directors have such a distinctive style that we should name a subgenre after them. As with the subgenres known as ‘Wes Anderson films’ or ‘Woody Allen pictures,’ I can (almost) always tell when I’m watching a Lasse Hallström film. Hallström is the director of over 30 films, whose name may not be familiar, but whose films are: Chocolat, Safe Haven, The Cider House Rules, Salmon Fishing in Yemen, Hachi: A Dog’s Tale, and my favorite of the lot, What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. Most viewers probably would be surprised to know a Swedish man made them, all of them feeling quite American and nothing at all like, say, a Bergman film Read more

November 3, 2014

his is the meaning and hope that escapes so many in our world today. Death is sad and young death is confusing and difficult. But Jesus and the gospel of grace gives meaning to life, regardless of how short. Our lives are vapors, but, in Christ, they are  vapors blowing towards a greater truth and greater reality God’s glory.Human life, no matter how short, is exploding with meaning and purpose. This was true for Brittney and this is true for every life lost in a miscarriage or an abortion. We don’t exist to make a name for ourselves. We exist to make a name for God and his greatness. Read more

October 29, 2014

All of us are aware of annoying phrases that have long since worn out their welcome, or were never welcome to begin with. You know what I’m talking about, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.” Is it really? Sounds like someone is being lazy and unoriginal to me. “Let’s git her done.” Annoying. “Just sayin.” No, you’re not “just sayin,” you’re trying to be a smart mouth. “A penny saved is a penny earned.” Ummm, no it’s not. You don’t earn something by saving it, it was already earned. “The pen is mightier than the sword.” Are you sure? How about we test that theory out? “Good things come to those who wait.” They do? Usually good things come to those who get off their butts and work for them (if they are able, of course). “It’s time to sink or swim.” Well, I’m tired so I think I’ll float a while.  Read more

October 27, 2014

I warn you ahead of time if you love this hymn or story, this might ruin your day. Read more

October 17, 2014

There are many misconceptions among modern American evangelicals about the practice of infant baptism. The first is that only Catholics and ‘liberals’ practice it, probably as a way of avoiding having to talk about sin and Jesus. The truth, however, is that it is a widespread practice, and from a global perspective is certainly the dominant practice, as it includes 2 of the 3 branches of Christianity, the Orthodox and Catholic, as well as Anglicans/Episcopalians, Lutherans, Presbyterians/Reformed, Methodists, some Nazarenes and some United Church of Christ (UCC). I will not attempt to speak to the theology and practice of all of those traditions, I will only represent my own tradition, as a Presbyterian in the Reformed tradition. I do so affirming the inerrancy of Scripture, the deity and uniqueness of Christ as the only way of Salvation, and the orthodoxy found in the Apostles’ and Nicene Creed. Read more

October 15, 2014

For anyone who works in ministry for any period of time, you have, no doubt, experienced moments akin to that of Moses… dealing with dreaded complaints. You would be hard pressed to find someone in a Christian ministry leadership position who didn’t deal with complaints, especially those which seem petty, unrealistic, or distracting. So for those of us who labor for the Kingdom, I want to provide a few thoughts to keep in mind when (not if) those complaints inevitably come. While I can’t say I’m an “expert” on the subject, this (sadly) is one area of ministry where I have a bit of experience. So when that sigh-inducing knock comes upon your door… when the caller ID reveals a complain-aholic on the other line, here are some things to remember: Read more

October 10, 2014

If the stats are true, and I think they are, then approximately half of the men in your church are addicted to pornography. Notice, I didn’t say struggle. I said addicted.  That is a massive number! And with the boldness of the pornography industry growing, why would think that the fight is going to get easier? Consider the giant adthe porn industry recently put in Time Square. The battle is not getting easier, it’s intensifying. Read more

October 6, 2014

When the church is before a storm, like Ebola, she needs to remain calm and focused. Christians ought to be  the soundest thinkers and offering some of the best advice. We need to be on the front lines meeting needs of our broken world. In doing this, we are given an amazing privilege from the creator of the universe, to share the wonderful gospel of Jesus Christ with a lost world. Let’s remind those around us that God is still in control. He is not frazzled and trying to figure out what to do. He is the sovereign voice of reason we all need to hear and share.  Read more

October 2, 2014

The problems and pain that enter our lives are often ways of God to get our attention… to remind us that we’re not in charge… to show us that His plan is better. We’ve deviated from the recipe and then wonder why the dish tastes so bad. The key is to be relationally in love with Christ, even in the midst of the difficult times He leads us through. That’s why Paul can say that he has learned to be content in all circumstances” (Philippians 4:11-13). Read more

September 29, 2014

Whether you are new to Reformed Theology or not, it is always helpful to have resources accessible for gospel centered reading. Due to the beauty of the internets there is a wealth of information out there – if you know where to find it.With this in mind, here are the 10 best blogs to follow about Reformed Theology. Read more

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