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Month: September 2016

Is God tired of listening

Is God Tired of Listening to Me?

“I’m tired of praying about it.” My frustration spilled out in those six words. Yes, the statement wobbled on the border between whining and honesty. But I sat among friends in the women’s small-group Bible study; no one would judge me there. In fact, several of them nodded. One said, […]

sexuality

Purity Is About More than Sexuality

What do you think of when you hear the word “pure”? I immediately think about sexual purity. No doubt, it is vital that we talk about and practice sexual purity in our current cultural climate. Or perhaps, instead of thinking about sexual purity, you think about moral purity: that when […]

Key Connections

Key Connections (September 28, 2016)

Only Our God Speaks (Ryan Shelton, Desiring God) It is so easy to start investing extreme amounts of time and energy, money and affection in worthless worship to fake saviors. How Jesus Maximized His Season (Sophie McDonald, The Gospel Coalition) Should our planners be continually overbooked? Should the normal pace of our lives […]

God will not be used

God Will Not Be Used

Most people know when they are being used. It’s obvious. A friend likes the perks of being around you because you can afford to pay. A family member emotionally manipulates you to get their way. A coworker sticks close because you do the better work. We dislike being used. It […]

turn my eyes from looking at worthless things

Turn My Eyes from Looking at Worthless Things

Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things, and give me life in your ways. (Psalm 119:37) This verse stopped me in my tracks. How often am I looking to “worthless” things instead of looking to Christ? Unfortunately, a lot more often than I would like to admit. I am […]

God's love

Trust God’s Love Even When He’s Silent

As I embarked on my two-and-a-half hour drive to undergo another treatment for Lyme disease, I was struck by the rare silence around me. There were no little children calling my name, no fights to break up, no one asking for something to eat, and no screaming or crying to […]

pastor colin smith

Q&A: How Pastor Colin Smith Unlocks the Bible

Christian Union: The Magazine recently interviewed Pastor Colin about the importance of Bible reading, tools to unlock the Bible, and the significance of Bible reading for our nation. Read the full interview here. When did your passion for the Word of God begin, and what has it meant in your own […]

Key Connections

Key Connections (September 21, 2016)

4 Questions Parents Should Ask of Extracurricular Activities (Cameron Cole, The Gospel Coalition) Is it wrong to play on Sunday? Are we offering a poor Christian witness if we miss games and practices for religious events? Is the grandparent’s anniversary party more important than the playoff soccer game? Is the Bible […]

why go to church

Why Go to Church? 50+ Things You Miss by Not Attending Church

According to recent Pew Research data, only 35% of American Christians consider attending religious services as an essential part of their faith.1 Only 28% listed “helping out in your congregation” as essential. It appears that the majority of self-proclaimed Christians do not know how to answer the question, “Why go to […]

college students

How College Students Can Prioritize the Bible

Whether we’re ready or not, back-to-school season is upon us. Summer days are melting into autumn chill. Backpacks are full-price again. Dorm halls are disaster zones. And books are everywhere. We have boxes and bags of new textbooks, shelves sagging under the weight of required reading, millions of words we’ll […]

Christian friendship

12 Characteristics of Christian Friendship

Some friendships start because of a shared interest. Others grow from proximity or common life circumstances. Friendships can be based on many things. But there is something uniquely special about a Christian friendship. A Christian friendship is based upon a shared devotion to the gospel of Jesus Christ. This spiritual […]

trust in the Lord with all your heart

What It Means to Trust in the Lord with All Your Heart

Education and learning have become idols to which people increasingly bow. We live in a time of exceeding pride in human knowledge and accomplishment. The information humanity has amassed is more than any individual can fully comprehend, and it is almost ubiquitously available. We are also surrounded by a culture […]

Key Connections

Key Connections (September 14, 2016)

10 Things You Should Know about Persecution (Tim Keesee, Crossway) Suffering for the sake of the gospel is a way in which we identify with Christ’s sufferings—and he, in turn, identifies with the sufferings of His people. Why You Should Read Through the Entire Bible as Fast as Possible (Jordan Standridge, The […]

Why Is Sound Doctrine So Important?

Shortly after placing a saving faith in Jesus Christ, I posted a quote to Facebook from a well-known, worldwide preacher. Later I received a message in my inbox from a Christian friend. She encouraged me to research this man and his Christian teaching before “following” him further. In my immaturity, […]

why you need the bible

Five Reasons You Desperately Need Your Bible

Why is Bible reading important? Most Christians know they should read their Bibles. But often, our Bible reading can feel dry and insignificant. Why is it so important for us to read this book? What’s the urgency of it? Ruth and Naomi’s story in the Old Testament reveals some urgent […]

life in the Spirit

A Road Map for Life in the Spirit

Some time ago, I came across the true story of a man who was sentenced to serve time in prison because he was a thief. While there, he was wonderfully converted and became a new creation in Jesus Christ. When the time came for his release from prison, he knew […]

contentment

A Prayer for Contentment

Oh Lord, you are my shepherd and I should not be in want, but so often I struggle to be content and do want; forgetting that you have graciously provided me with every spiritual blessing in Christ and everything I need for life and godliness. Thank you for often not […]

Key Connections

Key Connections (September 7, 2016)

Be Careful How You Read Your Bible (Joel Littlefield, For The Church) No longer should you go to the Bible to fulfill a chore, check a box or to maintain a religious posture. That isn’t doing you a favor. In fact, it might be hurting you. The Compassion of Community (Chelsea […]

panic attacks

Panic Attacks? Here Are Five Perspectives to Help You Endure Them Well

Panic attacks—they are crippling. Your mind spins, your pulse is out-of-control fast, the world fades, and you feel like you are sinking into it. If this is happening to you—I am so very sorry. I understand that you have likely spent significant time praying and yearning for a remedy. I […]

lying

Put Away the Sin of Lying

“Yes it is.” “No, it isn’t.” “Yes it is, I promise. I know, because I’m in school.” “Son, Mount Rushmore is not in Russia.” That was a real conversation I had with my mom, and I was the “yes man” above. You see, I had a lying problem when I was […]

walking by the Spirit

How Do You Know If You Are Walking by the Spirit?

Walk by the Spirit, Paul tells the believers in Galatians 5:16. Sure. Easier said than done. How do I know when my actions are Spirit-driven and when they are not? We human beings are quite capable of convincing ourselves that we’re living by the Spirit when we’re not even close to doing so. […]

Everybody Steals in Two Common Ways

Here’s an exercise to help you remember the eighth commandment: Visualize the number eight sideways. It looks like mini handcuffs. This exercise helps me to recall that the eighth commandment is stealing. Thou shalt not steal. (Exodus 20:15) Most people think they have not broken this commandment because often people […]