Friday, August 17, 2012

online meanderings: the practice of suffering, distilled comfort, the fear of God, and more

One [decathlete] said, "I threw the javelin farther than anyone else. I'm the greatest." Another said, "I put the shot farther than anyone else. I'm the greatest." Another said, "I jumped higher than anyone else. I'm the greatest." And eventually they all look toward Jesus...and someone says, "What about you?" And Jesus says, "I made all of you. So I'm the greatest." - John Piper

What matters supremely, therefore, is not, in the last analysis, the fact that I know God, but the larger fact which underlies it—the fact that he knows me...There is tremendous relief in knowing that his love to me is utterly realistic, based at every point on prior knowledge of the worst about me, so that no discovery now can disillusion him about me, in the way I am so often disillusioned about myself, and quench his determination to bless me. - JI Packer

It is impossible that any ill should happen to the man who is beloved of the Lord; the most crushing calamities can only shorten his journey and hasten him to his reward. Ill to him is not ill, but only good in a mysterious form. Losses enrich him, sickness is his medicine, reproach is his honor, death is his gain. No evil in the strict sense of the word can happen to him, for everything is overruled for good. Happy is he who is in such a case. He is secure where others are in peril, he lives where others die. - Charles Spurgeon

Top 5 posts
To suffer faithfully - "Practised in the art of suffering". The key to finishing the race, both in an Olympic marathon and in life. Nicole.

The two-pronged strategy of a master evangelist - We've forgotten how to personally challenge individuals about their standing with God. A word in season for me from John Chapman. Phillip Jensen.

Comfort distilled - Iain Campbell writes about preaching three days after his son's wedding was cancelled. Encouragement in 300 words.

Notice the famine? - How your culture impacts your Bible interpretation. Really worth reading. Trevin Wax HT Sam Freney.

When fear is good and Why we fear God - I'm really enjoying this series on the fear of God by David Mears.

And 12 more great posts
Welcoming the arrival of... - "She told me her birth plan ahead of time. It was this: to be grateful. And she is."  Nancy Ann.

Moral imperatives - I read so much bad stuff online about what to say when your son or daughter tells you they are homosexual; here, finally, is something worth saying. Frank Turk HT The Briefing.

When darkness seems to hide God's face - When hope is deferred, "there is a hope that is not deferred." A woman writes after miscarriage. Trillia Newbell.

Not out thank God - "God’s love, revealed in the gift of Jesus Christ, is the truth that keeps me going." An encouraging post by cancer sufferer Dave MacDonald.

"I Can't!" is relative - When you feel like you just can't do it any more. Jani Ortlund.

Watch the quiet ones - You might not notice the quiet ones, but they may be doing great things for God. Roberta Matuson.

Guidelines to reading Old Testament narrative - 10 principles for reading Old Testament narrative: short and sweet. Julian Freeman HT The Briefing.

Pray for your straying soul - It's good to be reminded how easily the soul strays - and to be exhorted to guard and pray against this. John Piper.

Please stop having quiet times - "Twice our Sacred Book calls itself a sword...A sword is only quiet when it's not being used." Jeff Medders.

Practicalities for getting praying - Finding it hard to pray regularly? Here are some helpful suggestions. Philip Jensen and Tony Payne.

How do the heck do we pray without ceasing? - Stephen Altrogge.

What do you do before breakfast? - Susie.

Women, callings and having it all - "We should equip young women at least as early as adolescence to begin honing such discernment and sober judgement." Jennifer Marshall HT Nancy Leigh DeMoss.

Mother fatigue - For tired women who love Jesus. Cathy.

Do you want to create a missionary culture? - How the gospel changes everything. Erik Raymond.

Small discipleship groups - An inspiring approach to small groups. Paul Tautges.

Some advice for youth ministers - Some helpful advice for youth ministers. Kevin DeYoung.

Good news for bad preachers - "Your first few sermons are always terrible, no matter who you are...You want them to be critiqued, and harshly." Russell Moore.

Beware of elevated vagueness - "I want to plead with pastors to be crystal clear in their preaching, and surgically clean in their private lives." John Piper.

Getting down with your kids - Getting down on the floor with your kids: why we don't, and why it'd be good if we did. Jonathon Holt.

God's good design by Claire Smith - An excellent book reviewed by Meredith.

Modest: Men and women clothed in the gospel - This book on modesty by Challies & co. actually looks good! Not a set of rules, but the gospel.

Parenting beyond you capacity - How church and family work together.

The wheel on the school - I'm reading this to my boys.

For fun
Little Free Library - What a lovely idea!

If you just can't get enough links, or want to see my links as I read them, check out

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