Here are some really thoughtful articles that I benefited from over the weekend. I hope that they are a blessing to you...
“So, here’s my conclusion: God will never give us more than we can handle. Is that biblically correct? Yes, if we mean God will never give his people trials in which he will not sustain them and bring them through to everlasting glory. We will be enabled to do all we must do to get there.”
“The preacher ought to do his best on each sermon and preach his guts out in an act of audience-of-One worship, but it is best not to trust one sermon for specific results. Instead, we trust a pattern of and persistence in preaching to have a cumulative effect on the hearts of individuals and in the shaping of a local body. Note-taking is a one sermon act of trust. Just listening and exulting in proclamation trusts that it’s okay to miss some good lines or good points, because it trusts the Holy Spirit to be shaping your heart through the preaching of God’s Word.”
“Plato, if we read him more carefully, suggests not: we escape the cave, not for the sake of the escape, but in order to gaze upon the sun (and then, paradoxically, to return to the cave to drag others out.) The escape does little good until, having gotten our eyes accustomed to the light of knowledge, we may behold “the idea of the good,” “the cause of all that is right and fair in everything.” We may treasure liberation as a great good, but not good in itself—rather, good for what it brings.
What this means is that liberation is never simply “from.” Always, implicitly or explicitly, it is also “towards.” And this realization must profoundly shape our teaching.”
“If you’re a male staff member at a church, I ask you to consider a ghost story of sorts. I don’t think for a minute that you hate women. I know there are valid reasons to take a measured approach to how you interact with us in ministry settings. I absolutely want you to be wise, but I don’t want you to be haunted. Three female ghosts haunt most churches, and I want you to recognize them so you can banish them from yours.
These three ghosts glide into staff meetings where key decisions are made. They hover in classrooms where theology is taught. They linger in prayer rooms where the weakest among us give voice to hurt. They strike fear into the hearts of both men and women, and worse, they breathe fear into the interactions between them. Their every intent is to cripple the ability of men and women to minister to and with one another.”