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A La Carte (December 28)

I was not able to track down any interesting Kindle deals for today, but we will hope for better things tomorrow. However, I did manage to track down some excellent articles and videos:

My Personal Philosophy of Open Air Preaching.

Geoffrey R. Kirkland shares his philosophy of open air preaching and evangelism.

Star Wars Movies Are Fun, Just Remember They Sometimes Contradict a Biblical Worldview

Randy Alcorn talks about Star Wars. “I am not a Star Wars naysayer, and it might seem self-evident that ‘these movies aren’t based on reality.’ But I’ve found that while almost no one ends up believing that the particular aliens onscreen really exist, matters of worldview are much more subtly conveyed. So I encourage parents to talk with their children about this, since many of them don’t yet have the filters in place to screen out what’s false.”

Should Christians make New Year’s Resolutions? (Video)

Dr. Hershael York answers these timely questions: “Should Christians make New Year’s Resolutions? Aren’t we commanded to not make oaths?”

What’s the Difference between Lament and Complaint?

“What’s the difference between lament and complaint? Or is ‘lament’ just a name we give to complaining when it’s in the Bible?”

Your ‘Free Time’ Isn’t Free

“Everyone loves free time, the time we have left after working and doing the things we have to do (sleep, bathe, do laundry, take care of the kids). ‘Free time’ is when we can finally do what we want. No one is telling us what to do; no one is demanding our attention. We can give our attention gladly to the things we love, or we can set leisure aside and keep working to get what we want. Whatever we decide, we’re in charge.” Sound good?

2017: A Christian Music Review

Jeremy Howard shares his roundup of what he considers the best Christian music that came our way in 2017.

Why Cynicism Is One of the Historian’s Great Gifts to the Church

This is really good stuff from Carl Trueman: “Some years ago, Phyllis Tickle likened Brian McLaren to Luther and the Emergent Church to the kind of paradigm shift that happens only once a millennium. The amazing thing was not that she said this; in a world shaped by the continual escalation of sales rhetoric, this kind of language is to be expected in advertising. No. What was truly amazing was that people actually took her seriously, friend and foe alike.”

Flashback: The Half-Trained Dog

We train ourselves for a while, but then grow weary when those last vestiges of the sin refuse to die, or when we realize that sin has much deeper and stronger roots than we had expected, or when we realize that we actually kind of like our sin. We end up half-trained, good enough Christians.

There are no citizens of the city of God who didn’t first arrive at its gates as refugees.

—James KA Smith

  • Lets Hear It For the Second Parents

    Let’s Hear It For the Second Parents

    While today we tend to associate step-parents with divorce, in previous centuries they were almost exclusively associated with death and with either widow- or widowerhood. In an era in which lifespans were shorter and, therefore, a greater number of parents died while their children were still young, there was a distinct and honored role for…

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    A La Carte (June 17)

    A La Carte: Honor good fathers and bad fathers alike? / Don’t give up, dad / How I respond to pride month / 5 myths about the pro-life movement / A seminar on biblical counseling / How do I know if I’m one of the elect? / Kindle deals / and more.

  • The Glorious End without the Difficult Means

    The Glorious End without the Difficult Means

    Just as Olympic athletes cannot realistically expect to win a gold medal unless they strictly discipline themselves toward victory, Christians cannot hope to prevail in the Christian life unless they take a serious, disciplined approach to it. Yet lurking in the background is always the temptation to hope that we can have the result of…

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    Weekend A La Carte (June 15)

    A La Carte: Learn to rest in God’s justice / 3 reasons why your small group is not a church / How can I be a godly father? / Gender in the void / Are images of Christ OK? / The getting of wisdom / and more.

  • Making Good Return

    Making Good Return

    I don’t think I am overstating the matter when I say that this has the potential to be one of the most important books you will read. It’s a book that may shape years of your life and transform the way you carry out one of the key roles God assigns to you…

  • A La Carte Friday 2

    A La Carte (June 14)

    A La Carte: 3 steps to find your voice / 7 things good dads say / One day leads to another / Let’s stop hyper-spiritualizing counseling / Enjoying the many flavors of the Word / What I wish you understood about the ethnic-specific church / and more.