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Weekend A La Carte (March 28)

There is an extensive list of Kindle deals today, rather a rarity for a Saturday. There are classics and newer works, plus options for kids, teens, and adults.

(Yesterday on the blog: If We All Stream Our Services, Will Anyone Ever Come Back?)

Turning Thunder Into Song

This is a helpful reflection on fear and worship. “My father surprised me one night by telling me he liked thunder. I didn’t like thunder. Thunder made me feel like unseen powers were about to crush my bedroom between their hands. Thunder made me rise and go to my dad and quietly say, ‘I’m scared.’ He came to sit with me for a few minutes while it passed. That’s when he told me he liked thunder. He liked feeling its awesomeness, its greatness.”

The Ibuprofen Debate Reveals the Danger of Covid-19 Rumors

As always, be careful what you read and believe. “Two weeks ago, national and world health authorities—and armchair experts and worried well-meaning people—were warning anyone concerned about Covid-19 to avoid ibuprofen. Now, facing contradictory evidence, they’ve backed off that claim.”

Gone and Back Again: My Departure and Return to the Immigrant Church

I enjoyed Jonathan Szeto’s thoughts on the immigrant church. “This is the immigrant Christian church in America. It has a right to exist because language is a natural barrier to gospel community. And by God’s grace, I hope and pray it grows. I pray the English congregation would continue to grow and develop to reach out to all sorts of English-speaking people. I pray the ethnic congregations continue to grow and minister to the steady stream of new immigrants.”

What Christians Can Learn About Ethics From COVID-19

Andrew T. Walker looks at a question some are asking: “Is it more important to preserve life or preserve economic vibrancy? Do we sacrifice the economy to save human lives or do we sacrifice human lives to save the economy?”

Even Ifs of April

Better than “what ifs” are “even ifs.” You may need to read the article to get what that means.

Six Reasons Why We Are Not Live Streaming Worship Services

With the majority of churches seeming to live-stream their services (including my own), I was glad to read this thoughtful dissenting perspective on the matter. “Some people have asked if we are going to host a live stream service. For now the answer is no, though that could change in the future. Below are some of the reasons we have decided not to provide a live stream worship service.”

It Can’t Happen Again (But It Did)

Chris Cagle covers the economic wreckage that has followed the coronavirus outbreak. “We need to remember that God doesn’t make a promise that we will always be healthy or will maintain the same lifestyle we have now. Nor does he say that we will keep all that we have (or could have had should things have been different). But He has promised that He will be with us and will always provide for us.”

Flashback: What We Lost When We Lost Our Hymnals

I don’t think we should go back to using hymnals. But I do think there’s value in considering what we lost when, over the course of a relatively short period of time, we gave up hymnals for PowerPoint projection.

Let your experience of God’s goodness in the past feed your faith in his loving purposes for you now. While there is no promise that we shall be delivered from all our trials and troubles, by faith we shall pass safely through them.

—Jonathan Stephen

  • 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…

  • Moral Vision

    From Washington & Jefferson to Trump & Biden

    The United States has produced more than its fair share of fascinating figures. Over the course of its storied history, it has produced a host of figures who have shaped the nation, the continent, and the world. Many of these have been its presidents and politicians, though others have been its inventors, its business leaders,…

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    A La Carte (February 16)

    A La Carte: What does the Bible say about dealing with divisive people? / How local churches can bridge a widening gender divide / Never preach to one person / Five pictures of the church / Two ways, two ends / and more.

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    A La Carte (February 15)

    A La Carte: This is what courage looks like / An important ministry skill no one talks about / Why you can’t get to heaven through the Mormon faith / Questions a pastor doesn’t want to ask / Christian displays of affection / Help! I don’t enjoy the Old Testament / and more.