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A La Carte (May 28)


Sometimes I have business ideas I don’t want to take action on. Like this: the Christian world needs a company that will connect advertisers and podcasters. Tons of people want to podcast, but there’s no seamless path to monetization. Someone ought to figure it out.

Today’s Kindle deals include just a few titles.

(Yesterday on the blog: The Safest Place for the Weakest People)

Turning the Other Cheek

Michael Aitcheson: “Jesus’ command to turn the other cheek (Matt. 5:38) probably strikes many of us as odd, at least at first. At best, it seems that Jesus is advocating neutrality from the victimized, and at worst it seems that He would have them welcome more harm. A closer look will show a Christ-centered understanding of the believer’s call to be free from a heart of revenge when wronged by others.”

The Coronavirus Crisis as a Wilderness Experience

“To what might we compare this unexpected and unsettling coronavirus season? We might think of it like ‘Groundhog Day’: a repeating monotony of locked-down life. We might think of it like the holding pattern of an aircraft coming in to land: an interminable period of waiting—like that of refugees waiting for a safe place to call home.” This article argues that we should think of it as a wilderness experience.

Dear Worthless Cockroach

Tony Payne answers an excellent question: “Is there anything about me (as myself, as the person I am apart from God’s saving grace) that is actually worthwhile or lovable? Am I just a worthless, sinful cockroach that God has chosen to love? And if so, am I wrong to feel bad or uneasy about this? To feel (as I sometimes do) that underneath everything, I really am pretty worthless and unlovable?”

Still Growing

Melissa reflects on 21 years of marriage and how she and her husband have grown up along the way.

Churches’ Rights and Responsibilities When Reopening in the Pandemic

Church leaders will benefit from reading this article from 9Marks. “Having represented churches around the country throughout this pandemic as they stood up to religious discrimination, we have frequently been asked to share our thoughts on what churches’ rights and responsibilities are as they consider reopening. Although much of this discussion focuses on what legal rights and responsibilities churches have as they transition into this new phase, it is critical to keep in mind that just because something is legal to do (even under our Constitution) does not always mean that it is wise to do.”

What Are God’s Purposes in a Recession?

Could God actually have good purposes even in a recession? John Piper offers an answer. “God is sovereign, which is why you can speak in terms of purposes. God is sovereign over these things. He foresees them all. He causes or permits them all. And when he foresees and he causes or permits, it is always by design. So, whatever comes to pass comes to pass by God’s design, however it comes to pass.”

4 Ways Paul Encourages Us to Love the Church (Even When It’s Hard)

“The church has more beauty—and more value—than we can see with physical eyes. Like the Old Testament tabernacle that was covered on the outside with ram’s skins and goat hair but ornamented inside with gold and silver, the ordinary-looking church is actually much more than it seems.”

Flashback: The Tone Deaf Singer

You can be utterly tone deaf and sing beautiful music in the ear of God when the gospel is dwelling richly within and when you are singing to exult in the Savior.

Afflictions are continued no longer than till they have done their work.

—Matthew Henry

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    Weekend A La Carte (June 22)

    A La Carte: Motherhood / An open letter to dads about gentle parenting / How do I navigate a painful breakup? / More wonderful than being beautiful / Three reasons to show up to the prayer meeting / and more.

  • Free Stuff Fridays (Moody Publishers)

    This giveaway is sponsored by Moody Publishers. Attention all Bible scholars, believers in the power of faith, and lovers of the Word! Learn about God’s divine mercy and compassion with our exclusive Bible Study Giveaway. Win the ultimate bible study library including Overflowing Mercies by author and Bible teacher Craig Allen Cooper. This giveaway also…

  • Leadership

    We Need Qualified Leadership

    A few days ago I happened upon the page of an especially mega-sized megachurch. The church is about to undergo a leadership transition from an older man to a younger one and a page on the site lays out the process through which this new pastor was chosen. I read with a morbid kind of…

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    A La Carte (June 21)

    A La Carte: Making tea and holding hands for the sake of the gospel / When Christian groups subvert religious liberty of Christians / How busy should I be? / 5 ways people worship themselves / A backwards birth into heaven / A new systematic theology / and more.

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    A La Carte (June 20)

    A La Carte: How to support the caregivers in your church / What we gain in following Jesus / The way we feel is not necessarily the way it is / The power and danger of habit / The man who introduced American Evangelicals to C.S. Lewis / and more.

  • Do Not Envy the Wicked

    Do You Envy the Wicked?

    It takes a long time for sinful instincts to become pure, for tendencies toward what is evil to be transformed into tendencies toward what is good, lovely, and pleasing to God. The man who quits drugs will still react when he catches a whiff and the woman who gave up alcoholism will still struggle when…