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A La Carte (September 13)


Today’s Kindle deals include a pretty good assortment of books.

Westminster Books has some solid deals on lots of solid books.

I’d Probably Still Cancel Your Short-Term Mission Trip

No, not all short-term mission trips are bad. But a lot are. Darren Carlson tells about the differences. “Churches are less likely to support a long-term missionary than to send a group of teens to paint a house or put on a VBS in a country where they don’t speak the language. American churches often send untrained individuals from among the financially privileged on short-term trips as a means of discipleship. In doing do, we swamp long-term workers with people who have flexible schedules and eager hearts, but not a lot of skill.”

5+ Questions to Ask a Visiting Missionary at Dinner

I enjoyed this one. “Ok, so you’re inviting a visiting missionary over for dinner. For sure you’ll ask them about their ministry and all they are experiencing God doing in the hearts and lives of the people they serve. This is good and important, but it doesn’t have to be the only thing you talk about. In my experience, most missionaries have an arsenal of hair-raising and side-splitting stories. Once you’re past the meat of your dinner conversation and moving on to tea and coffee, why not try some of these?…”

Elite Failure Has Brought Americans to the Edge of an Existential Crisis

I’m less taken with the conclusions of this article than the observations. “The nuclear family, religious fealty, and national pride—family, God, and country—are a holy trinity of American traditionalism. The fact that allegiance to all three is in precipitous decline tells us something important about the evolution of the American identity.”

Seeing Tears

“Oh how often I’ve been tired-to-death of ‘Christian’ platitudes. But, remarkably, I’ve never tired of Christ. Or, to speak more truly, Christ has somehow — remarkably — never tired of me. Even when I was as low as my suffering friend was this summer. Especially when I was that low.”

Why Making Apple iPhones in America Is So Hard (Video)

It sounds pretty unlikely that an iPhone will ever be made in America.

Will Unbelievers Be Annihilated or Suffer Eternally?

Tom Schreiner answers.

Catholicism Made Me Protestant

What an interesting journey…

Flashback: 5 Ways to Ruin a Perfectly Good Dating Relationship

Here are some ways I’ve seen people ruin what could have been a beautiful thing.

At the resurrection, no one who has chosen Jesus over sexual fulfillment will have missed out. Compared with that relationship, human marriage will seem like a toy car next to a Tesla, or a kiss on an envelope versus a lover’s embrace.

—Rebecca McLaughlin

  • Like an iPhone

    Like an iPhone, Only Much More So

    Can I confess something to you? There’s one thing Aileen does that really bugs me. We will be talking together and enjoying one another’s company. But then, as we chat, I’ll hear the telltale buzz of her phone. And I can tell that I’ve lost her. I can see it in the look on her…

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    A La Carte (February 21)

    A La Carte: When cultural tailwinds become cultural headwinds / Talking with kids about gender issues / Try to be more awkward / Life is more than mountaintop experiences / Tinder / Unpacking “separation of church and state” / and more.

  • 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.

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    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?…