Here is a collection of good reads gathered from across the internet this past week. Enjoy!
On sharing about Jesus and making disciples: 10 Great Commission Thoughts to Challenge You Today by Chuck Lawless
A single 30-minute sermon is more time in the Word than 3 billion+ people in the world have had engaging the Word in their entire lifetime. We who have access to the Word through preaching, study, books, the Internet, etc., have great reason not to take these gifts for granted. (click here to read more)
On discipleship: A Helpful Way to Think about Personal Discipleship by Mike Leake
What if we used my friends helpful principle to think about discipleship? First, I make a concentrated effort to spend time with people. Secondly, every time I spend time with them my goal is to leave them better than when we started—to help them take one step closer to Christ. That’s it. Every time I meet with you I want to love you and want to help you see Jesus a little better. (And quite likely you’ll help me see Jesus better too). (click here to read more)
On politics and the Christian life: A Gentle Political Recalibration by Erik Raymond
Here in the United States our news is dominated by the Presidential election cycle and as a result, we are inundated with up to the minute analysis of debates, rallies, interviews, editorials, and tweets. Many have observed that this is a particularly important election. I happen to agree with them while also noting that the same thing is said every four years. It is always important.
Without minimizing the importance of the election or impugning anyone who is a political junkie, I want to offer a gentile reminder for Christians who might be getting a little too wrapped up in the election. Call it a gentle calibration. (click here to read more)
On the Christian and depression: Jesus Died for Your Depression Too by Cody Barnhart
I first felt the effects of depression late in middle school. It led me into a short stint of melodrama freshman year, a longing for suicide in my sophomore and junior years, and, thankfully, a softening in my heart toward the gospel my senior year. Adolescence was tough. I felt like I would never be known. I remember thinking that nobody could ever truly love somebody who hated himself that much, so instead of being honest with those who loved me, I pushed my feelings deeper down until they consumed me altogether. (click here to read more)
On culture and grace: The Idea that Changed the World by Steve Bezner
In the desire to be holy, Christians often comfort themselves with the words of Jesus: “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.” (Matthew 10:34) Left unchecked, we will tend to believe that it is good for us to create division with our faithfulness. In fact, when we are drifting away from our theological mooring, we can default to a position of cultural antagonism without a redemptive goal. (Orthodox Christians would argue cultural antagonism with a redemptive goal is ultimately a unifying good.)
But have Christians oversold the position of “taking a stand”? (click here to read more)