Here are some of the most encouraging and interesting articles I've read recently. Perhaps you will find them helpful as well...
“There’s no religious test for office, and there shouldn’t be. My Baptist ancestors were willing to make alliances with the heretical Thomas Jefferson because he believed in religious liberty. It didn’t matter that they never would have let him teach Sunday school.
We should not demand to see the long-form certificate for Mr. Trump’s second birth. We should, though, ask about his personal character and fitness for office. His personal morality is clear, not because of tabloid exposés but because of his own boasts. His attitude toward women is that of a Bronze Age warlord. He tells us in one of his books that he revels in the fact that he gets to sleep with some of the “top women in the world.” He has divorced two wives (so far) for other women.”
“Because if children are people, then they are also our neighbors. This means that every scriptural imperative that speaks to loving our neighbor as we love ourselves suddenly comes to bear on how we parent. Every command to love preferentially at great cost, with great effort, and with godly wisdom becomes not just a command to love the people in my workplace or the people in my church or the people at my hair salon or the people on my street or the people in the homeless shelter. It becomes a command to love the people under my own roof, no matter how small. If children are people, then our own children are our very closest neighbors. No other neighbor lives closer or needs our self-sacrificing love more.”
“Legalism is being disciplined in order to live up to the law in our own strength, for the sake of achieving justification of sins. (We can resort to this way of living even after becoming genuine believers, trying to save ourselves even though we have been given the gift of salvation in Christ.)
Godly discipline is being disciplined in the strength of the Holy Spirit, with the purpose of sanctification, fully aware that justification comes only through salvation in Christ. For this reason we can say, “Christ has bought me with a price and, therefore, I will discipline myself to run the race he has set before me, ‘laying aside every weight and sin that clings so closely'”(Hebrews 12:1).”
“I wish I was a better housekeeper. I see piles of clean laundry ready to be folded and put away, a bare wall in need of pictures (I’ve needed to do that for a solid year, actually), notice dishes from last night’s chocolate-and-wine event with friends still in the sink. There are bathrooms that need cleaning and my bed is a mess of unmade sheets up in my room. And when those thoughts of, “I need to be better at this, I’m a terrible housekeeper” start creeping in, I would do well to think: I am not an airplane.
I should work out more, I tell myself. Be skinnier. Wear hipper clothes. I am not an airplane.
I want to live big and full and far-reaching. I want to do things that are just beyond my grasp. I want to be challenged every day, I want to be learning every day, I want to be soaring to heights every day.
But I am not an airplane.
I am a human person, with limited time and talent and energy. The sky is not the limit, and though I hate to admit it, my feet must remain firmly planted on the ground most of the time.”
“It is a big deal to kill babies in the womb because murder is a big deal. We know it is a big deal because the reason capital punishment was inaugurated by God after the flood was because of how big a deal it is to murder someone who is in the image of God. Genesis 9:6 says, “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.” That is what makes it such a big deal. You don’t kill beings uniquely created in the image of God.”
“My favorite way of sharing the Gospel with someone is one on one. We can sit down and talk through issues that may be keeping them from trusting Christ and clarifying important truth. But I've also seen outreach events be effective in bringing people to know Christ. And what's the best is when you can mash the two together, use the outreach event to create opportunity to talk deeper. Here are twelve ideas to help you do just that, create an atmosphere non-believers would feel comfortable in and be able to simply transition to the Gospel and their thoughts about Jesus.”