Good Reads 10.21.15 (on: adoption and the gospel, bearing burdens, kindness in politics, and more!)

Here is a collection of good reads gathered from across the internet this past week. Enjoy!

On adoption and God’s adoption of us: A Father to the Fatherless by Chris Thomas

You see, I had always appreciated those passages like Galatians 4:4-7 or Romans 8:12-17, but I had never truly grasped them until I chose and loved a son who wasn’t my own. … I have no right to call myself a child of God. But my Father loves me! My Father sings over me! My Father rejoices over me! My Father guards me as a treasured possession! My Father points to me as an eternal display of his love, a living trophy of his grace! I am loved. I am a child of God. (click here to read more)

On the Christian’s call to share the gospel: Advancing God’s Kingdom Is Not Just Your Pastor’s Job by Matt Moore

Who are the “saints”? Paul, Peter, St. Valentine, and whoever else the Roman Catholic Church deems worthy of the title? Nope. You and I are the saints. What this verse says is that one reason God gives us shepherds and teachers is to equip us to be ministers of the gospel. I think the phrase “work of ministry” in Ephesians 4:12 is applicable to both our work in the local church (which is why we shouldn’t neglect teaching Sunday School classes or serving in the nursery!) and our work in evangelism. God’s vision is that all of his children would be priests who serve in the weekly functioning of the Church . . . and prophets who proclaim Jesus to a lost and dying word. (click here to read more)

On work and the glory of God: Your Work Has an Eschatology by Sam Parkinson

A ministry position in a local church is not the only possible work you can do to the glory of God. If you work as a barista, work hard to give your customer a well-crafted drink; this shapes the world and it is pleasing to the Lord. If you’re a banker, work hard for the fiscal success of your employer and for your customer’s peace of mind; this shapes the world and it is pleasing to the Lord. If you are a plumber, work hard to bless your clients with dependable plumbing; this shapes the world and it is pleasing to the Lord. If you are a stay-at-home mother, work hard to raise and nurture your children for their temporal and eternal good (even when your hard work goes unrecognized); this profoundly shapes the world and it is pleasing to the Lord. (click here to read more)

On hope and an other-focused life: Hope Beyond the Heavy Burdens You Carry by Paul Maxwell

When life requires us to push harder, to protect more vigilantly, to give more freely, to expend unavailable energies, to accomplish impossible tasks, God offers us his sustaining love, his gentle concern, his guiding sovereignty. We are not alone as we bear the burdens of those around us, because God joyfully bears us up with him each day with exactly what we need — his sustaining grace, more than ever on the days when we don’t feel it. When Christ returns, we will witness a global mourning among those who have recklessly cast aside the free offer of Christ’s grace in this life. And the unseen faithful and generous servants will finally rest. (click here to read more)

On showing kindness to those who disagree with us politically and culturally: How Confidence Makes Us Kind by Russell Moore

A gloomy view of culture leads to meanness. If we believe we are on the losing side of history, we slide into the rage of those who know their time is short. We have no reason to be fearful or sullen or mean. We’re not the losers of history. We are not slouching toward Gomorrah; we are marching to Zion. The worst thing that can possibly happen to us has already happened: we’re dead. We were crucified at Skull Place, under the wrath of God. And the best thing that could happen to us has already happened; we’re alive, in Christ, and our future is seated at the right hand of God, and he’s feeling just fine. (click here to read more)

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