From the Word

“Because of all my enemies, I am the utter contempt of my neighbors; I am a dread to my friends—those who see me on the street flee from me. I am forgotten by them as though I were dead; I have become like broken pottery. For I hear the slander of many; there is terror on every side; they conspire against me and plot to take my life. But I trust in you, O Lord; I say, ‘You are my God.’ My times are in your hands; deliver me from my enemies and from those who pursue me. Let your face shine on your servant; save me in your unfailing love.” (Psalm 31:11-16)

Notable Quotables

“You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” (Jon Kabat-Zinn)

“Never think that God’s delays are God’s denials. Hold on; hold fast; hold out. Patience is genius.” (Georges-Louis Leclerc)

“We all have our time machines. Some take us back, they’re called memories. Some take us forward, they’re called dreams.” (Jeremy Irons)

“We need never shout across the spaces to an absent God. He is nearer than our own soul, closer than our most secret thoughts” (A. W. Tozer).

“I’m not suffering from anything that a good resurrection can’t fix.” (D. A. Carson)

Around the Net

How to View God’s Weak, Flawed, and Messy People (Mark Altrogge)
“If you spend any time in a church, you’ll discover a conglomeration of flawed and imperfect folks, with plenty of weaknesses and shortcomings. It’s easy to look at our brothers and sisters and see their warts and blemishes. Yet the perfect One, the holy One, the One without a single imperfection doesn’t look on his people the way we often do. Look what he says through David in Psalm 16:3: ‘As for the saints in the land, they are the excellent (or majestic, NASB) ones, in whom is all my delight.’”

The State of Evangelicalism and All That Blah Blah Blah (Tim Challies)
“I have grown accustomed to hearing about the horrific state of evangelicalism in the United States of America. The 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation has seemed to add some new fuel to that fire, a fresh opportunity to bemoan the sorry state of the church today. It has apparently become almost a pastime among conservative Christians—to lament what the church is, rather than what she ought to be. I’ve come to think y’all are being a little too hard on yourselves.”

How to Care for Abuse Survivors in Your Congregation (Krispin Mayfield)
God wants to heal and care for us “just as a parent tenderly holds a tearful child who was bullied on the playground. We are most often wounded in the context of relationship, and it is in relationship that we are healed. The church has an opportunity to bind up the brokenhearted, but it will require extra care. If pastors assume that some of the church’s congregants, if not most, have been impacted by trauma, they will find ways to make churches welcoming communities of safety and healing.”

God Will Give You More Than You Can Handle (Sophie McDonald)
“Do you feel strained by the seemingly endless litany of tasks before you, the weight of burdens in community and ministry, and the demand to do and be it all without cracking under pressure? During those times I’ve heard well-meaning people say, “Yeah, what you’re going through is hard, but God won’t give you more than you can handle.”The problem with that and Mother Theresa’s famous quote—“I know God won’t give me anything I can’t handle. I just wish he didn’t trust me so much”—is that it’s not Scriptural.”

Comfort from Psalm 18 (Paul Tautges)
“Every time David gained a victory, Saul’s insecurity deepened and the bitter cycle of jealousy ensued. Twice Saul tried to stick David to the wall with a spear. Innumerable other times he plotted to kill him, forcing David to flee from city-to-city and cave-to-cave. For ten years, David ran for his life. But out of those deep, dark years grew a living faith that learned to trust in God. In the furnace of suffering, many songs were born. One is called Psalm 18.”

Something to Ponder

The Point of Creation

“God made humans in his image so that the world would be filled with reflectors of God. Images of God. Seven billion statues of God—so that nobody would miss the point of creation. Nobody (unless they are stone blind) could miss the point of humanity, namely, God—knowing, loving, showing God. The angels cry in Isaiah 6:3, ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!’ It is full of billions of human image-bearers. Glorious ruins.

“But not only humans. Also, nature! Why such a breathtaking world for us to live in? Why such a vast universe? I once read that there are more stars in the universe than there are words and sounds that all humans of all time have ever spoken. Why are there so many? So large? So bright? At such unimaginable distances? The Bible is crystal clear about this: ‘The heavens declare the glory of God’ (Psalm 19:1). If someone asks, ‘If earth is the only inhabited planet and man the only rational inhabitant among the stars, why such a large and empty universe?’ The answer is: It’s not about us. It’s about God.”

– John Piper

The Glory of Creation

Face to Face

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Image Credit: visitsolomons.com

Into All the World

“A good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow” (Gen. George S. Patton)

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