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A La Carte

June 08, 2011

Advice for Writers - “I have always been annoyed by the tendency some writers have to make writing a book sound like hard labor in Siberia.” Me too, even though I’ve probably been one (I’ll ask my wife).

Go to Sleep! - Jay Younts writes a review of a book that is currently selling like crazy. “This book is a best seller because it touches on several universal themes of parenting: the impossibility of controlling the behavior of toddlers; more specifically, dealing with toddlers who will not go to sleep; and, of course, the behavior of parents who can’t control their children. It has something with which every parent can connect. And, oh yes, it has one more modern universal – it is boldly and unashamedly profane.”

Drunk Ladies, Sober Players - Stephen Altrogge: “Philly fans have a hard earned reputation as being the most obnoxious fans in sports, and there were definitely some annoying Philly fans at this game. But the ladies in front of me weren’t obnoxious. At least not at first. However, as the game wore on and the alcohol kicked in, the ladies started to do something that I found very humorous: They started judging the performance of the Pirate players.”

All Sins Are Not Equal - This is a good quote from R.C. Sproul.

1 Timothy 2:15 - Mary Kassian offers up an interesting take on 1 Timothy 2:15 (which I wrote about yesterday).

Amazon and Sales Tax - These laws are bound to change soon. “California visitors to Wal-Mart Stores’ (WMT) website must pay $214 to buy a Philips Electronics (PHG) 22-inch LCD HDTV, one of the hottest-selling flat-panel televisions on the Web. Customers of Amazon.com (AMZN) in that state see a price of $194 for the same product. The discrepancy stems largely from something that dates back to Julius Caesar: sales tax. Wal-Mart, with about 100 stores in California, has to collect it. Amazon, with no stores in California—or anywhere else, for that matter—does not.”

The Reality of the Resurrection - I enjoyed this spoken word piece from Odd Thomas (HT:IC):

A man may have the tongue of an angel and the heart of a devil. —John Flavel

June 07, 2011

It seems like readers have been enjoying the Kindle specials I’ve posted the past couple of days. So here are a couple more I noticed yesterday: Choosing to SEE by Mary Beth Chapman is available at $2.99; Tortured for Christ by Richard Wurmbrand is at $1.00; Same Kind of Different As Me is at $4.74.

Father’s Day Special - Cruciform Press has a Father’s Day special going on. “Get your dad (or really, anyone) a one-year print book subscription and you gain a special opportunity —Buy yourself (or your church, your small group, your reading club, your neighbor…) any number of books from the Cruciform Press catalog AT THE $6.49 SUBSCRIPTION PRICE.”

Tablets in Bed - Using that iPad in bed may not be good for your health.

Top Ten Fights in Marriage - “Toronto author Emma Waverman, who writes for the Canadian MSN Lifestyle Internet Portal, has come up with an unscientific list of the Top 10 Fights in Marriage. She’s ranked them in order of importance–ranging from a common squabble to an all out brawl.” Mary Kassian puts them to the vote.

Are You Smarter than Anthony Weiner? - Russell Moore asks an important question. “Crazy. Irrational. I don’t know the full story behind any of these, but, in every one of these situations, the behavior seems self-evidently self-destructive. So why do they do it? Why do people risk their families, their careers, their reputations, in such reckless ways?”

In the Hospital in Joplin - “You never know that it will be the most important day of your life until the day is over. The day started like any other day for me: waking up, eating, going to the gym, showering, and going to my 4 pm ED shift. As I drove to the hospital, I mentally prepared for my shift as I always do, but nothing could ever have prepared me for what was going to happen on this shift.”

Free eBooks - Monergism Books has a list of free e-books for you to download.

Results Matter - Thomas Sowell deals out spankings to the schools and to the government. I love reading his columns.

NEXT - I’m hearing good things about the messages delivered at the recent NEXT conference. They are free for the taking at the NEXT site.

Fixing Our Eyes on the Cross - Art Azurdia speaks on “Fixing Our Eyes On The Cross.”

The Christian life is not a playground; it is a battle ground. —Warren Wiersbe

June 06, 2011

In case you missed it on Saturday, I put together quite a list of deals for Kindle owners. Amazon currently has a lot of good books that are being sold for just a dollor or two. You may like to check out the list as I’m sure the deals will not last for long.

And here are some links for today:

Encourage Your Husband - Brian Croft: “I am grateful that my previous post for husbands has brought with it the same request from the wives. Since I feel much more qualified to write the questions that wives can ask their husbands to encourage us…here are 10 questions for you:”

Bureaucratic Stupidity - Whether this happens in your country or mine, I think we can all identify with this kind of bureaucratic stupidity. “There are some things so far exiled from all the known limits of common sense and rational practice, so inhospitable to logic and fairness, that only — only — governments can be responsible for them.”

Taboo Then and Now - LIFE has an interesting little gallery of what was taboo then and how we now regard it as completely normal and unremarkable.

The Church of Sports - Slate: “Sports make up a religious strand of American life, and their church is the Entertainment Sports Programming Network. In its 32 years of existence, ESPN has expanded from a cheesy tent-show evangelizing Australian-rules football and girls softball to being ‘the worldwide leader in sports’—a media empire with a presence in television, books, magazines, and the Web.”

Disproving God - Tony Payne offers a useful rebuttal to a line of reasoning we’ve all heard: “An all-powerful God could eliminate all evil and suffering. An all-good, all-loving God would want to eliminate all evil and suffering. Given that evil and suffering are everywhere in our world, the all-powerful, all-good, all-loving God does not exist.”

E-Books Aren’t There Yet - Wired offers 5 reasons that e-books just aren’t there quite yet.

The Milky Way - This is an amazing time-lapse video.

By perseverance the snail reached the ark.C.H. Spurgeon

June 04, 2011

Let me get things started with some Kindle book deals. These deals have been coming in fast and furious over the past few days; I’ve been tweeting them but also wanted to publish them here. Publishers really seem to be pushing the Kindle and we are all happy beneficiaries of their experiments. Here are a few exceptional deals:

Sold to a Brothel - Tragic. “M. is an ebullient girl, age 10, who ranks near the top of her fourth-grade class and dreams of being a doctor. Yet she, like all of India, is at a turning point, and it looks as if her family may instead sell her to a brothel.”

The Great Cloud of Witnesses - J.C. Ryle and Andrew Peterson make an appearance together in this blog post.

Free Audio - This month’s free audio book from ChristianAudio is Joni Eareckson Tada’s A Place of Healing.

Oprah’s 10 Moments - This article outlines Oprah’s 10 most important moments on television.

The Office, Day 1 - Mark Altrogge seems to be enjoying his new office. “I enter my office.  Boxes strewn everywhere.  One of the secretaries started to arrange my commentaries but quit because she didn’t know my ‘system.’  My system’s so complex the Dewey decimal pales in comparison.  Mine relies heavily on the book cover color and placing the most impressive books (with titles like The Death of Death in the Death of Christ by John Owen or The Grinch Who Stole Christmas) at eye level to make a good first impression.”

Moving Pictures - Here is a gallery of strangely fascinating photographs—but photographs that each have at least one moving element.

All you really need to know about guidance can be summed up in this one sentence: God is faithful, so obey him. Whether or not that seems likely to work is not your business. Being faithful to God’s revealed will is your business. —Iain Duguid (HT)

June 03, 2011

Earlier this week you voted for the product you wanted to have on sale for $5. You chose R.C. Sproul’s DVD series What Is Reformed Theology? And now, for only 24 hours, it’s at Ligonier for $5 (down from the usual price of $48). There are some other great books and DVDs there for the same price, so you may want to stock up. Go to $5 Fridays. There’s more. If you click that link you should also receive 10% off on your purchase. If you don’t see that reflected, use the coupon code “CHALLIES10” and you should get 10% off.

And here are some other good links for today:

Writing on Athanasius - Carl Trueman has a good article on Christian biography. “Hagiography - the uncritical and adulatory description of the life of a hero of the faith - is probably the most common form of popular Christian biographical writing and probably the most useful in a strictly pragmatic, results-oriented way.”

Women Ministering to Women - Thabiti has written about an upcoming conference targetted to women who are involved in ministry or who are wives of pastors. It looks like it will be a good one (and it’s by an organization I love).

100 Web Apps - This is a roundup of some amazing web apps that can do, well, pretty much everything.

4 Ways to Neutralize Your Weaknesses - This article offers some good things to think about as you consider your personal weaknesses.

Together for Adoption - The upcoming Together for Adoption National Conference has put together a really strong lineup of speakers. Registration has just opened…

10 Pieces of Seminary Advice - Patrick Schreiner has put together 10 pieces of useful advice for seminarians.

God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supplies. —Hudson Taylor

June 02, 2011

Think - The Kindle edition of John Piper’s book Think is on sale at Amazon for just $2.99.  $2.99 will also get you the excellent book Son of Hamas by Mosab Hassan Yousef while $1.99 will get you Alex Chediak’s brand new book Thriving at College.

Free Kindle Books - Those are some deeply discounted Kindle books. Here’s an article on how to get free Christian books for the Kindle.

Timmy Brister on Piper/Warren - I mentioned Timmy Brister’s blog in my article on John Piper and Rick Warren. Timmy wrote a few thoughts in a follow-up blog post.

False Prophets - Dr. Mohler begins an article on Harold Camping in this way: “Andy Warhol was wrong. Fame doesn’t last just fifteen minutes. After all, Harold Camping is still in the news, more than a week after his prophecy that the world would end on May 21 at 6:00 p.m. turned out — as expected — to be false.”

Mother-in-Law - At the True Woman blog, Erin Davis is writing about mothers-in-law. “I once heard someone say that the relationship between a mother-in-law and daughter-in-law is the most fragile of all human relationships. If you are a MIL or a DIL, you already know this relationship can get sticky. Mothers-in-law often fulfill a role that is part mother, part friend, and part threat in the lives of their son’s wives. Daughters-in-law are not quite the same as a biological daughter, and yet they are a huge part of the make-up of the family. The result can be a lot of relational thin ice that is difficult to tread.”

Why Apple Is Doomed - This may well be true: “In Jobs, they posses the most valuable creative mind in the world. Apple is not just the latest great tech company, it is historically great, and to maintain that level without the irreplaceable taste of Steve Jobs will be impossible.”

There is no telling how much power God can put into a man.C.H. Spurgeon

June 01, 2011

God’s Been Hunting Me Down - David Murray tells what he has learned from his recent health woes. “I know that’s the main message God has been sending me through these afflictions. STOP!” There are good lessons there for all of us.

The Book Surgeon - This is amazing stuff. I think I may have linked to it before. But it’s just as amazing now. If was rich…well, if I was rich I don’t know that I could justify spending money on it. But it’s still amazing.

Deals @ WTS - Westminster Books has some good deals this week. You can check out the new Christianity Explored books and DVDs at a deep discount and also get a selection of other good books at 45 or 50% off. Click the link for details.

Buying In Bulk - This is worth considering next time you head to Costco. “Is bigger necessarily better? Not when it comes to food packaging, at least if you’re watching your weight.”

Soldiers’ Bedrooms - This is kind of tragic—a gallery of some of the bedrooms that America’s young war dead have left behind.

A YouTube Sensation - This is a slightly older story I just stumbled across in my favorites folder. “It seems an ever-more common scenario: a death is captured in a photograph or video. The images are uploaded onto the Web. Within days, thousands, if not millions, of strangers have pierced their way into a family’s grief—gawking at the final moments of a life that were never meant to be public.” 

Blog Tour - The Next Story is in the midst of a blog tour. So if you want to check out a review or two, you may want to swing by the link.

Faith is the daring of the soul to go farther than it can see. —William N. Clarke

May 31, 2011

On Friday night my son had a baseball game; we went to watch and it was cold enough out there that we broke out our winter coats. Today, factoring in the humidity, we are expecting to break 100 degrees. Canada is truly odd that way.

Wilson on Productivity - These are some good thoughts on productivity. 

Commuting and Divorce - Granting that there is a bit of an agenda behind this article, the facts are interesting enough: with a commute comes an increased likelihood of divorce. 

Fair - Ed Welch says “fair” is a 4-letter word. “It’s a child’s first sentence, perhaps a senior’s last, and it makes many appearances in between. So who would have thought that fair is a dirty word? It should never be spoken within the boundaries of the Kingdom of Heaven; it is never spoken there. You have to leave the throne room before it can be muttered.”

Technology as an Alternative to Love - This is probably worth thinking about.

Coming Home - A photo gallery from LIFE of soldiers returning from war.

Last Goodbye - In honor of Memorial Day, Christian Rapper Tedashii released this track/video from his new album (which releases today, as it happens).

Get on fire for God and men will come and see you burn. —John Wesley