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A La Carte (March 12)


We are in unfamiliar and unprecedented times, aren’t we? As we hear growing news of lockdowns, quarantines, travel bans, and cancelations, isn’t it good to know that our God is sovereign? As R.C. Sproul said, “If there is one single molecule in this universe running around loose, totally free of God’s sovereignty, then we have no guarantee that a single promise of God will ever be fulfilled.” But this virus too, is within God’s sovereignty, and each of his promises remains intact.

(Yesterday on the blog: Never Read a Bible Verse (and Never Listen To a Sermon Clip))

John Piper’s Death-Row Plea

Here’s an account of the time John Piper was able to preach the gospel to death row inmates at Louisiana’s Angola prison. “In Angola’s chapel, before eight hundred prisoners, Piper preached from John 6 on Jesus’s feeding of the five thousand and his walk on water. ‘I preached with all my heart to those who could fit in the chapel,’ Piper recounted later. ‘I pulled no punches.’ Many other prisoners watched on closed-circuit television, including Bordelon and his fellow death-row inmates.”

Is the Nuclear Family a Mistake?

Colin Smothers writes about David Brook’s article that ran last month in The Atlantic called “The Nuclear Family Was a Mistake.”

The Logistics of the US Census (Video)

The US census is a remarkable feat of logistics. This video explains just some of what’s involved.

Sorry, I Can’t Promise It Will Be Any Different

“There are times when people leave churches that you can credibly tell them that a move to your place would resolve their problem.” But, in all honesty, there are far more times when moving won’t resolve their problem. Or it may just introduce a new problem.

Gripping Fear

Lisa LaGeorge offers biblical wisdom to counter fear. “We live in a fear-filled world, right? Baby lo-jacks, elbow pads, and helicopter parents. Lawyers and liabilities, and the Mom-Squad. I am not a parent, but I spent more than a decade talking with parents who were afraid of what might happen if their students traveled on a missions trip–enough time to fear 37 more things than those parents had actually thought to worry about. I have spent more than two decades reading daily briefings from SOS, the CDC, the WHO, and various embassies around the world. I get it. Danger is real.”

Embracing Your Reformed Roots

“Our churches can flourish if we will embrace our Reformed roots. Now, some want to run back and use our roots as an excuse not to engage with our modern culture. It is more comfortable to live in the past than in the present. Others dismiss our roots as dated, old-fashioned, and even legalistic as we embrace a standard. However, we face the storm winds of a secular America and as we see churches and denominations swept away with the culture and times, it is important to embrace our roots, so that we might not only hold fast but even flourish in our day.” This article offers four ways to embrace Reformed roots.

How Should Christians Engage With the Culture? (Video)

James Anderson provides a brief but helpful discussion of culture in this short video.

Flashback: There Is Nothing Trite About It!

When it comes to prayer, there is nothing trite about it. We sometimes can and must do more than pray, but we must never do less than pray.

True happiness doesn’t come from your picture being liked but from your soul being loved—primarily by Jesus and then by friends who know you.

—Matt Fuller

  • Free Stuff Fridays (Help The Persecuted)

    This weeks giveaway is sponsored by Help The Persecuted. Help The Persecuted rescues, restores, and rebuilds the lives of persecuted believers in the Islamic World through spiritual support and tangible help. Every week, they send out an email with specific, real-time prayer requests of persecuted believers to their global Prayer Network. You can join the…

  • A La Carte Friday 2

    A La Carte (March 1)

    A La Carte: Rumblings of revival among Gen Z / Addition by subtraction / Seeing red / Burying the talents of the Great Rewarder / Inviting evaluation of your preaching / Book and Kindle deals / and more.

  • New and Notable Books

    New and Notable Christian Books for February 2024

    February is typically a solid month for book releases, and this February was no exception. As the month drew to its close, I sorted through the many (many!) books that came my way this month and arrived at this list of new and notables. In each case, I’ve provided the editorial description to give you…

  • A La Carte Thursday 1

    A La Carte (February 29)

    A La Carte: Is it ever right to lie? / When the “perfect” fit isn’t / An open letter to Christians who doubt / When a baby is a disease / The long view of preaching / and more.

  • A Freak of Nature (and Nurture)

    A Freak of Nature (and Nurture)

    We are probably so accustomed to seeing bonsai trees that we don’t think much about them. But have you ever paused to consider how strange and freakish they really are?

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (February 28)

    A La Carte: Can Christians buy expensive things? / You are probably WEIRDER than you think / Our limits are a gift from God / Big dreams impress. Ordinary faithfulness delivers / The biggest problem in worship education / Children’s books / and more.