In practicing darkness while professing light, we sin. Often the things that enable long-term sin to continue are so much a part of the fabric of our lives that we don’t even see them anymore. That is why Jesus called the Pharisees “blind” guides.
Darkness conceals and disguises. It distorts, hides and disturbs vision so that things appear other than they really are. Darkness varnishes over blemishes. We use the darkness to hide ourselves from ourselves, from others and from God.
Psychologist for trauma survivors and clergy
The missions field is all around us: in our neighborhoods, at school, work or the grocery store and, yes, even on social media. …
Everything we do outwardly, whether actions, words or social media posts, either points unbelievers to Christ or doesn’t.
And as Christians, we are all called to be missionaries wherever God has placed us and to continually point others to Christ.
Would you be proud to show our holy God what’s on your profile?
Spoiler: He’s already seen it.
Thoughts on Peace
I come from a family that worries about lots of things — weighty things like finances and the future, as well as things that are less so, like driving over high bridges or catching a cold when it’s raining.
Worrying comes naturally to me, and I think it does for most of us. But in Philippians 4:6–7, Paul encourages us to call out to God with our requests, not in one way but in three: prayer, petition and thanksgiving.
Notice that it does not say here that this will rid us of our challenges. Even in the midst of this peace, I know that shortly I will need to rise and shine and begin the daily grind. I still lead a nonprofit that addresses serious needs that many are unaware of and some others, frankly, pretend don’t exist.
In our family we still face the daily challenges of adolescence AND toddlerhood. And every day we seek to navigate relationships and life in general in a world that is struggling and less-than-perfect.
But there is peace.
Panama City, Fla.
“There are no favorites at the Lord’s table.”
Thomas R. Schreiner
Southern Baptist Theological Seminary professor and author of “The Lord’s Supper”
A favorite story from my ministry was a question given by a 7-year-old. I was pastoring FBC Columbus, Mississippi. In the sermon I was laboriously explaining something or other, now long forgotten.
At that point little Holly Martin, precious and precocious, turned to her mom Lydia and said, “Mother, why does Pastor Joe think we need this information?” Every pastor ought to be stopped halfway through the sermon and made to answer that question. Why do you think they need this information?
When Lydia told me that story, I screamed, “Yes! What a great question!!” I’m forever grateful for the honest query of a 7-year-old.
Joe McKeever via Facebook
To truly support a life, we must support the parents. That means coming alongside them and helping them make choices that will help them and the baby thrive.
Director of external engagement
Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, SBC
Our feelings about ourselves grow out of what we believe about ourselves.
Morris Murray Jr.
After the past year, some of us may find it hard to express optimism. Indeed, I’ve been through this bleakness in my own life when I had to attend a virtual funeral for my grandmother last year. … But this spring, as we welcomed our third child into the world, my story shifted to one of hope when I looked into her eyes. …
We need to take the time to tell each other our stories and listen in turn. If we can communicate what happened to us during this past year, we can better understand what we need to move toward a better future.
Illustrations are windows that help our audience see clearly into the house of the sermon.
President Danny Akin
Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary
From the Twitterverse
The great opportunity the Church has at this moment in history is to be the island of sanity in the sea of irrationality.
I often wonder, is there such a thing as an unexpressed thought anymore? Not everything that pops into your mind needs to be on social media. In fact, most of it is best left as just a thought.
We naturally commend what we cherish. If you don’t cherish Christ, no amount of training will aid you in sharing Him.
Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but he who makes his ways crooked will be found out. — Proverbs 10:9
“Productivity is not about getting more things done; it’s about getting the right things done.” —@MichaelHyatt
“The future is something which everyone reaches at the rate of sixty minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.” —C.S. Lewis
“The greatest fact of the past is that Jesus died for us. The greatest fact of the present is that Jesus lives within us. But the greatest fact of the future is that Jesus is coming for us.” —@AdamBDooley
“You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the end.” —author unknown
“Comfort, comfort my people, says your God” (Isaiah 40:1). Not “Inform, inform.” Not “Exhort, exhort.” Not even “Teach, teach.” But “Comfort, comfort.” The sacred privilege of every faithful pastor.
Morning Prayer: Loving God, we awaken to a world suffering from violence and illness and the pain that comes with it all. Help us to not give up hope but to believe that acts of goodness, mercy, and justice do matter and make a difference. May we not give up on hope. Amen.
This is what it means to be a Christian — to live with radical abandonment for the glory of Jesus. To see the mission of Christ as the purpose of our lives.