Good Reads 07.30.15 (on parenting, being a church member, joy, and more!)

Here is a collection of links to good reads found across the internet this past week. Be sure to check them out:

On church membership: Why Join a Church? by David Mathis

In our flighty and noncommittal age, neither non-Christians nor Christians are naturally inclined to find a place to put down roots and make longstanding, objective commitments for the good of others. We want to keep our options open and, above all, preserve our own freedom of choice, rather than make a covenant for the long haul and embrace a framework for real life in all its ups and downs. But what if you went against the grain and became part of the solution to the modern problem of being so noncommittal? What if you joined the rebellion, and pledged your loyalty and engagement to a Bible-believing, gospel-cherishing local church? (click here to read more)

On seeing God at work in dark times: God Often Does His Best Work in the Darkness by Stephen Altrogge

Being in the valley of trials stinks. It’s painful, disorienting, and confusing. As we stagger and stumble along we often wonder, “Where is God? Why is he allowing me to go through this?” We feel stuck and broken, like we can’t move forward. We are perplexed, crushed, weighed down, and in the dark. We move ahead slowly, groping and grasping, hoping to find a handhold. The reality is, however, that God often does his best work in the darkness. (click here to read more)

On parenting: Raising Real Kids, Not Fakers by Nicholas McDonald

The #1 difference is this: ”real” students come from safe homes. Put simply, a safe home is a place where it’s okay to fail. In fact, it’s expected, and embraced. Rather than excusing their children’s sin or “fixing” it, these parents resolve to love their children through imperfection. And that’s the #1 way to keep our children real.  (click here to read more)

On spiritual growth: Three Ways to Grow in Faith by Mike Leake

Every believer has dry seasons. There are times when our faith is lively and vigorous. At other times we wonder if prayer is just talking to ourselves. Though our union with Christ is unbreakable our communion with him is variable…. So how do we grow in our faith? (click here to read more)

On what joy is: How Do You Define ‘Joy’? by John Piper

It is not just in the word that we see Christ. We see him in his gifts and in people. We see him in his gifts of nature. We see him in his gifts of food and in all of the good things that our Father in heaven gives to us. Every gift of Christ to us is intended to be a communication of something of himself. So we see Christ not only — we taste Christ not only — in his word, but also in his works. (click here to read more)

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