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A La Carte (March 25)

A La Carte Collection cover image

Good morning. Grace and peace to you.

Today’s Kindle deals include several titles by Nancy Guthrie (along with some others).

(Yesterday on the blog: God Graciously Condescends)

Murder of Crows? The Oddities of Collective Names

This is a thoroughly enjoyable reflection on the way we names collectives, whether of birds or people. “Given enough time, virtually every hobby develops its own bizarre vocabulary — wacky insider terms that sound absolutely alien to normal people. To say that someone ‘hit four sixes in an 18-ball 39’ sounds like a ludicrous math problem, unless you’re wise to the jargon of cricket. Instructing someone to ‘raise pressure foot and pivot’ could result in bodily injury, unless that someone is a quilter. It’s true that every generation has its lingo, but so does every worthwhile hobby.”

It’s You. Hi. You’re the Problem. It’s You.

Guilty as charged. “We are quick to think that the reason we experience conflict is because someone else is the problem. You fight with your boss because he’s a jerk. You fight with your wife because she’s unreasonable. You fight with your neighbor because she’s obnoxious.”

A Royal Lesson on the Rumor Mill from The Princess of Wales

This is a lesson we would do well to heed.

Pastoring is Tortoise Work: A Lesson for the Young and Aspiring

“Talking with a fellow pastor I know and trust, I recently asked a question. ‘What’s one quality you believe is indispensable for an effective pastor?’ After a moment’s thought, the answer came: patience.” That is well worth considering.

The Island of Lost Boys

Bethel McGrew writes about some of the lesser-known detransition stories. “When transgenderism was a budding fad, some people looked into their crystal balls and shrewdly predicted that a reckoning was coming. It wouldn’t be immediate, of course. It would take time for young people to realize they’d been screwed over. And it would take courage. Lots and lots of courage.”

What Must the Label “Evangelical” Do to Be Saved?

“Names and labels get … complicated when it comes to religious, social, and theological movements, especially when the name of the movement—as in the case of evangelicals—has a very important word embedded in it: evangel, the gospel.”

Flashback: Always Count the Cost

We must be willing to have others consider us fools or fanatics, to have our words twisted and even our purest actions misrepresented. We cannot expect or even hope that we will gain the favor of God and the favor of men.

Here is the history of the grass—sown, grown, blown, mown, gone; and the history of man is not much more.

—Charles Spurgeon

  • The Path to Contentment

    The Path to Contentment

    I wonder if you have ever considered that the solution to discontentment almost always seems to be more. If I only had more money I would be content. If I only had more followers, more possessions, more beauty, then at last I would consider myself successful. If only my house was bigger, my influence wider,…

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    A La Carte (April 22)

    A La Carte: Why my shepherd carries a rod / When Mandisa forgave Simon Cowell / An open mind is like an open mouth / Marriage: the half-time report / The church should mind its spiritual business / Kindle deals / and more.

  • It Begins and Ends with Speaking

    It Begins and Ends with Speaking

    Part of the joy of reading biography is having the opportunity to learn about a person who lived before us. An exceptional biography makes us feel as if we have actually come to know its subject, so that we rejoice in that person’s triumphs, grieve over his failures, and weep at his death.

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    Weekend A La Carte (April 20)

    A La Carte: Living counterculturally during election season / Borrowing a death / The many ministries of godly women / When we lose loved ones and have regrets / Ethnicity and race and the colorblindness question / The case for children’s worship services / and more.

  • The Anxious Generation

    The Great Rewiring of Childhood

    I know I’m getting old and all that, and I’m aware this means that I’ll be tempted to look unfavorably at people who are younger than myself. I know I’ll be tempted to consider what people were like when I was young and to stand in judgment of what people are like today. Yet even…

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    A La Carte (April 19)

    A La Carte: The gateway drug to post-Christian paganism / You and I probably would have been nazis / Be doers of my preference / God can work through anyone and everything / the Bible does not say God is trans / Kindle deals / and more.