Wise Words on Fathering

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My friend, Kevin Dibbley, wrote an excellent note a couple of weeks ago to a new father. Reflecting on his own experience raising his daughters, Kevin offers some sound advice that rebuked me, encouraged me, and moved me to tears of thankfulness. If you’re a parent (or know one) you should read this post (or get them to read this post). Here’s a snippet: Don’t take yourself so seriously. That may sound like a strange thing to say, especially at a time in our culture when there is a great need for serious parenting, and in particular, diligent and faithful fathering. I Continue reading

Tough Words on Forgiveness

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In his excellent commentary on Luke’s Gospel, David Garland spends some time thinking about forgiveness as he reflects on the Lord’s model prayer (Luke 11.1-4). He then cites C.S. Lewis on the topic of forgiveness and what Christians really believe: We believe that God forgives us our sins; but also that He will not do so unless we forgive other people their sins against us. There is no doubt about the second part of this statement. It is in the Lord’s Prayer, it was emphatically stated by our Lord. If you don’t forgive you will not be forgiven. No exceptions Continue reading

The Foot of the Cross

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It seems chaotic. Crowds moving, people hollering. Some are mocking and laughing. Others simply shake their heads as they pass by. For many there, vicious — almost indescribable — anger is thinly veiled beneath jeering and taunting. Never has laughter been so spiteful. And then there are a few — just a few — who stand still. Silently, mournfully, disbelievingly, gazing upward at a bloodied and broken man, still hoping that any moment now they will awake to find this has been a horrific dream. But it’s not. It won’t go away. Nothing has ever been more real. Nothing has Continue reading

So Much More Than Manners

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Say ‘Thank You!’ As a bratty little boy I had to be constantly reminded to say ‘Thank you’ for things. I was unthankful and presumptuous. My elders were working for my good when they laboured to teach me my manners, and I am very thankful for it. Sadly, my hardness of heart through my youth set some persistent patterns in my life and behaviour. My unwillingness to be thankful as a matter of courtesy continued into adulthood. It’s really only over the past few years that I’ve begun to realize just how connected thanklessness / thankfulness is to my heart’s Continue reading

When Divorce Is Good and Holy… Christians Are Confused

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Someone recently forwarded me an article called ‘When Divorce is Good and Holy‘ and asked for my thoughts. I don’t typically respond to other people’s posts publicly but when I read this one, I felt a strong sense of urgency within my own heart to reply. When it comes to issues like marriage, which are so close to the heart of God, we need to think very carefully. The premise of the article is simple: If Jesus upholds divorce as a legitimate option then we ought to view it as good and holy, when carried out according to his teaching. Continue reading

What Has Christ Cost You?

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The Big Question It’s a personal question, but it’s one that must be asked: What has it cost you to follow Jesus? This past Sunday I had the privilege of preaching Luke 6.12-26. There Jesus considers those who are poor, hungry, weeping, and rejected as ‘blessed.’ They are to be happy. He even commands them to rejoice! Why would that be blessed? Doesn’t all of human history testify to our striving as a race to get away from poverty, hunger, weeping, and rejection? Why should these people be happy? Jesus answers: Theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Their future reward is Continue reading

Ways to Love the Church More

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Let me say this plainly: I love the people of Grace Fellowship Church. I totally felt what John Piper was saying in a recent interview on his experience as a pastor at Bethlehem: I never felt that I was the church’s privilege, but that she is mine. To be at Bethlehem was gift, all gift. I have felt that to be my reality in increasing measure since we planted, almost three years ago now. And I know that Paul, my fellow pastor, feels the same way. That being said, I have known enough churches and enough pastors over the years to realize Continue reading