From the Word

“It is good to praise the Lord and make music to your name, O Most High, to proclaim your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night, to the music of the ten-stringed lyre and the melody of the harp. For you make me glad by your deeds, O Lord; I sing for joy at the works of your hands. How great are your works, O Lord, how profound your thoughts!” (Psalm 92:1-5)

Notable Quotables

“God is hard to get rid of.” (Jeff Bates)

“Best friends are made when you’re at the bottom, not the top.” (Tullian Tchividgen)

“How can I lead people into the quiet place beside the still waters if I am in perpetual motion?” (Eugene Peterson)

“Racism will not flourish when people believe their neighbor bears God’s image.” (Max Lucado)

“What a child doesn’t receive he can seldom later give.” (P. D. James)

Around the Net

The Absolute Best Bucket List You Can’t Miss (Ann Voskamp)

Here’s Ann Voskamp doing what she does best—encouraging and instructing through metaphor. “The good life always requires good bit of endurance. The only way to the best life is endurance through the hard things. And this is true: Endurance does more than bear hard things—it turns them into good things. There is no other way to keep enduring. . . . Pouring out your heart—is what will actually hold your heart together. Pouring out your life—is what will elevate your life.”

4 Ways to Spot a Bitter Root (Erin Davis)

“Bitterness isn’t one of those big, flashy sins that you can see growing above the surface of our hearts. It may not show off like anger or produce big ol’ hunks of rotten fruit like disobedience. Bitterness is a sleeper sin. It grows beneath the surface, down deep in the soil of our hearts. But the author’s warning in Hebrews is clear—that bitter root will one day sprout, and when it does, ‘many will become defiled.’ In other words, if that bitter root keeps growing, there will be a harvest of pain for you and the people in your world.

Five Steps For Getting Unstuck With Difficult Bible Passages (Dan DeWitt)

Have you ever hit a brick wall in trying to understand something in the Bible? Given the gap between our time and theirs, our culture and theirs, that can happen quite a bit. Here are some things to do when we get stuck. “There are times when we just don’t know what to do with certain passages or topics in the Bible. What’s the best way to proceed when you feel like you don’t know where to go? In his really helpful little book The Story of Scripture, Professor Rob Plummer gives several recommendations for dealing with difficult passages in the Bible.”

The Pastor and Pathological Self-Criticism (Jonathan Parnell)

 “Pathological self-criticism is the regular—and often obsessive—reexamining of our pastoral performance in order to discern its effectiveness and determine the ways it must improve. I’m talking about the continual second-guessing of the things we do in service of others. I’m talking about that constant drip that wonders: If I said that differently, would more people have been helped? Would I have sounded less stupid? PSC isn’t simply being hard on yourself; it’s doing harm to yourself at the mental level—and it doesn’t deserve an ounce of sympathy.”

10 Things to Know about Sleep as the Clocks Go Back (Rachel Schraer & Joey D’Urso)

 “Spring ahead; fall back.” Yes, it’s that time of year again when we adjust the clocks by one hour. Like it or not, many people across the world will wake up having gained an hour’s sleep on Sunday morning, leading to darker evenings and shorter days. But how much do we know about sleep and its impact on our lives, from our health and mood, to how long we’ll live? Schraer and D’Urso give us ten things to know about sleep.

Something to Ponder

Good News, Not Good Advice

 The gospel is good news, not good advice. The gospel is not primarily a way of life. It is not something we do, but something that has been done for us and something that we must respond to. In the Greek translation of the Old Testament—the Septuagint—the word euangelizo (proclaim good news) occurs twenty-three times. As we see in Psalm 40:9 (ESV)—‘I have told the glad news of [your] deliverance in the great congregation’—the term is generally used to declare the news of something that has happened to rescue and deliver people from peril. In the New Testament, the word group euangelion (good news), euangelizo (proclaim good news), and euangelistes (one who proclaims good news) occurs at least 133 times.

“D. A. Carson draws this conclusion from a thorough study of gospel words: ‘Because the gospel is news, good news, it is to be announced; that is what one does with news. The essential heraldic element in preaching is bound up with the fact that the core message is not a code of ethics to be debated, still less a list of aphorisms to be admired and pondered, and certainly not a systematic theology to be outlined and schematized. Though it properly grounds ethics, aphorisms, and systematics, it is none of these three: it is news, good news, and therefore must be publicly announced.’”

– Tim Keller, Center Church

The Friday Funny

Donnall and Connall Explain the Trinity

The Glory of Creation

Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska

mountains-wrangell-st-eliasImage Credit: Frans Lanting

Into All the World

“What we do in life echoes in eternity.” (Maximus)

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