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A La Carte (November 6)

monday

Good morning from Oakville, Ontario! After many days of flight cancelations due to fog and volcanic ash, conditions in Unalaska finally cleared on Saturday and we were able to make our way back to Canada. We are glad to be home.

Today’s Kindle deals include a selection from Crossway (plus a few others).

(Yesterday on the blog: A Day’s Journey)

How the Customer Review Changed the World

“Of all the web’s achievements, one of its greatest is surely the sheer freedom of access to information it has given to billions of people around the world who would probably otherwise have never come near it.” That access to information has given us abilities we didn’t have before (at least in the same way)—abilities like reviewing anything and everything.

The Table of the Lord

I don’t necessarily agree with this argument for celebrating the Lord’s Supper at an actual table—something that was the practice of the churches I grew up in—but I enjoyed reading and considering it nonetheless.

The Unexpected Blessing of a Rural Church

“As I sat on a hard wooden pew in a tiny church listening to the preacher, my heart raced and beads of sweat covered my forehead. I blushed as I looked to and fro like a trapped rabbit before a hound dog, afraid to be seen if I moved, but filled with a panicked desire to flee. Even in my guilt and shame, my ears and eyes fixated on the pastor as every word he spoke resonated with and pierced my soul.”

Mercilessness in the Name of Mercy

Trevin Wax explains how the very notion of “mercy” can be misused and exploited. “Christianity—in holding people responsible for their actions—ennobles the sinner. Christianity affirms the value of human life and the reality of human freedom. Holding someone accountable is an aspect of showing mercy, of saying, You are a man and not a beast.”

The Common Grace of Conscience

This is a bit of a refresher on the common grace that is the human conscience.

Our Prayer-Answering God (when He says wait)

“As we send up our petitions in Jesus’ name, He at times delights to answer ‘yes’ to our prayers. At other times, He chooses to bring Himself glory by asking us to wait for our requests. His timing is perfect, and it’s possible to wait patiently in His strength.”

Flashback: Solemnity and Celebration, Exclusivity and Inclusivity

The Lord’s Supper is an occasion that is both grave and joyful. Part of the solemnity of the Lord’s Supper is related to its exclusivity—some are told to stay away. Part of the celebration of the Lord’s Supper is related to its inclusivity—so many have been invited to join in.

There cannot be a heaven without Christ. He is the sum total of bliss, the fountain from which heaven flows, the element of which heaven is composed.

—Charles Spurgeon

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (February 20)

    A La Carte: How hell motivates holiness / The bond of love / How to love our friends in truth, even when it stings / The distorting power of the prosperity gospel / Thinking about plagues / and more.

  • A Difference Making Ministry for Any Christian

    A Difference-Making Ministry for Any Christian

    The experience of preaching is very different from the front than from the back, when facing the congregation than when facing the preacher. The congregation faces one man who is doing his utmost to be engaging, to hold their attention, and to apply truths that will impact their hearts and transform their lives.

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (February 19)

    A La Carte: Courageous pastors or overbearing leaders? / Jesus didn’t diss the poor / 8 qualities of true revival / Why don’t you talk about the sermon? / The idol of competence / The danger of inhospitality / and more.

  • Why Those Who Seem Most Likely to Come, Never Come At All

    Why Those Who Seem Most Likely to Come, Never Come At All

    It is something we have all observed at one time or another and something we have all wondered about. Why is it that those who seem most likely to come to Christ so often reject him? Why is it that those hear the boldest invitations and who have the greatest opportunities so commonly turn away?…

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    Weekend A La Carte (February 17)

    A La Carte: Think you’re immune to adultery? / One of the most hopeful reminders about sanctification / What do we do with dreams and visions? / Have you ever asked your church elders to visit and pray for you? / The neurodivergent believer / Preaching advice for busy pastors / and more.

  • Free Stuff Fridays (Open the Bible)

    This week’s Free Stuff Friday is sponsored by Open the Bible. They encourage you to enter to win a series of books from Open the Bible and Pastor Colin Smith! Included in the giveaway are: For All Who Grieve by Pastor Colin Smith. Written with compassion and understanding, yet honestly facing the difficult questions that…