Retake your heart: Five reasons for fresh courage (David Mathis): However discouraged you may feel, your flagging heart never lies beyond the reach of Christ. No matter how troubled, how unsettled, how fickle, how disoriented, how despondent, Jesus can handle your ailing heart. “There are many sorts of broken hearts,” says Charles Spurgeon, “and Christ is good at healing them all.” Read more at Desiring God.
10 ways the enemy robs us of our joy (Chuck Lawless): Paul made it clear to us that we wrestle against demonic forces as we strive to follow Christ (Eph. 6:12). In fact, the enemy often seeks to destroy our Christian joy so that our witness for Christ loses its effectiveness. Here are some ways he seeks to rob us. Read more at ChuckLawless.com.
7 encouraging reasons to pray (Colin Smith): Here are seven reasons we pray which are meant to encourage you in your pursuit of Jesus Christ. Read more at Unlocking the Bible.
6 ways to counter consumer Christianity (Chuck Lawless): It’s no secret that North American Christianity has a ring of consumerism to it. It can be a self-centered, “what will you provide for me” religion that invites churchgoers to move from church to church until they find what most pleases them. Here are six ways to counter that tendency, however. Read more at ChuckLawless.com.
7 steps to move members into ministry (Chuck Lawless): Some good practical advice to get members engaged in ministry at ChuckLawless.com.
Movement, monument, mausoleum (Ray Ortlund): A healthy church is born as a burst of positive gospel energy. It’s a Pentecost-like explosion of joy, a vital gospel movement. Such a church has a sense of mission, even a sense of destiny. It’s exciting to be in this church. Think of a steep upward trajectory. Read more at The Gospel Coalition.
The healthy church in 2029: Ten major changes in 10 years (Thom Rainer): A prescient reader asked me to look forward. “What do you think a healthy church will look like in 2029?” he asked. I am grateful for his question. And though I can’t know with precision the shape of our churches in ten years, I do see some outliers and trends pointing us toward some key directions. Let me take those signposts and fast forward ten years. Read more at ThomRainer.com.
7 thoughts about leaving a church poorly (Chuck Lawless): Only once in my Christian journey have I left a church because I didn’t like the ways things were being handled. Immorality wasn’t an issue among the leaders, and it wasn’t that the pastor was not teaching the Word. Others felt like the pastor wasn’t doing his job, and they brought me as a young man (19 years old) into that discussion. Within months, I had left the church. Looking back, though, I realize some of my wrong choices as I tried to help address the issues. Read more at ChuckLawless.com.
Can broad and narrow complementarians coexist in the SBC? (Denny Burk): Although this article was birthed from some controversy in the SBC, I believe many evangelical churches will increasingly face opposition to the broad complementarian view and will have to have clear biblical answers to defend the position. Tom Schreiner and Jonathan Leeman address the issue biblically and practically in this article. Read more at DennyBurk.com.
What does “meaningless/vanity/futility” mean in Ecclesiastes? (Peter Krol): So we can construct a definition for hebel (“vanity”), according to its use in Ecclesiastes, as follows: “Unsatisfying, endless repetition of old things that nobody will remember; nothing you do will last, and at the end you die. And you can’t fix it.”* This is hebel. This is what you have to gain from all the toil at which you toil under the sun. Read more at Knowable Word.