Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. (Philippians 2:3)
At Christmastime, it’s good for us to remember just how dangerous fantasies are.
I’m not talking about Narnia-type fantasies. I’m talking about how out of our self-centered desires we construct ideas and expectations of the way we want things to be and project them on to people and events. If those people or events don’t meet our expectations we grumble and sulk and lose our tempers.
Fantasy-fueled expectations can easily become tyrants. At Christmas they are often the Scrooges and Grinches of our celebrations. Less flatteringly, they are the devils in the garden o…
I was once an orphan with no hope, no purpose, no aim, but God in his kindness . . .
These words are true for all of us who are now in Jesus by faith. Oh how easy it is to forget it, and shy away from coming to a deep understanding of what it means to be an orphan, and what it means to be adopted, to be rescued, from hopelessness.
Aaron and Jamie Ivey were given a unique perspective on what it means to be adopted by God through their two-and-a-half-year journey to bring home their son. This is Amos’s story.
But God in his kindness brought Amos home and gave him a new name. May this story be a reminder of what a beautiful gospel shadow adoption is and that no matter what your past is, i…
How does an old man obey Hebrews 13:7?
Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith.
At 67, who are my leaders? Who has spoken to me the word of God? Whose faith should I imitate? Whose outcome of life should I consider?
The older I get, the fewer leaders are left who spoke to me the word of God. The fewer faithful men in front of me leading the way. They are dying. The older I get, the more people there are behind me looking to me as a finisher. It’s a trembling place to be. Fewer to look to. More looking on.
What caught my attention in my devotional reading of this verse was the word “outcome.” “Consid…
Suffering has a way of pressing us to go deeper with God.
It’s sadly not the case for all, but many have testified that their embrace of God’s sovereignty and goodness was catalyzed during a season of profound suffering.
Sometimes it’s fresh truths about God intersecting with our lives in the hardest of times. But often suffering becomes a testing ground for what truths we’ve already built into our lives in the easiest of days. Such was my experience.
Wrestling with Hard Truths
It took me several years of “normal life” to believe that such truths — like God’s sovereignty, predestination, and election — should be called “truths” at all. I wasn’t sure they were biblical. I wondered, if God…
“What Child Is This?” is no chart-topper among the children. The minor keys and slower pace make it less engaging to little ears. It’s hard to compete with the brightness, cadence, and pep of “Jingle Bells” and “Joy to the World.”
And that repeated rhetorical question is puzzling to a child’s undeveloped sense of artistry. “What child is this?” It’s Jesus, of course. Why do we keep asking that when we all know the answer?
Nails, Spear Shall Pierce Him Through
But many of us eventually grew out of our childish disillusionment with the carol. For some, it’s even become a favorite. Especially those steeping their minds in the Scriptures. It’s that powerful couplet in the second verse soundin…
One day we will stand before Jesus.
If we could see through the clutter of our lives now, if we could envision that day when everything is said and done, it’s clear that the enduring mission in and under and beyond every detail of our lives should be about pleasing him. What does he think?
What will he say?
We don’t know the exact words Jesus will speak to us on that Day, though the Bible gives us some ideas (Matthew 25:23). Whatever it is, we can be sure it will be glorious and full of grace. We will hear his voice. It will be amazing.
But what if we turned the question around? Instead of just wondering what Jesus might say to us, what will we say to Jesus? Imagine with me for a moment …
May I invite you into the life of a Calvinist? It’s probably not what you think. The sovereign God of the Bible is full of surprises. Sermons and essays are good. But sometimes only poems will do. We grope for special words and special forms to catch the radiance of God.
I wrote this poem called “The Calvinist” to capture a glimpse of God’s sovereign intersection with the life of a sinful man. There is no part of life where the greatness of God does not penetrate deeply. I want to help you feel that.
The team at Desiring God was so moved they that they dreamed up a plan to make the poem more memorable and moving by putting it into video.
To my amazement, six friends were willing to be p…
Nobody said it was easy;
No one ever said it would be this hard. (Coldplay, “The Scientist”)
O Christian Hedonism! That ancient, beautiful, biblical truth that our treasure is what most captures our heart (Matthew 6:21), that what measures our treasure is our pleasure, that if God is our “exceeding joy” (Psalm 43:4) then God’s pursuit of glory and our pursuit of happiness are one wonderful, wild pursuit! Because God is actually most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him.
For many of us, putting the scriptural pieces together and seeing this truth was almost like a second conversion. We saw more good in the gospel than we had ever seen before: God doesn’t merely want us holy; h…
“Mom, I need to add something to my Christmas wish list.”
It’s that time of year again. The stores are adorned with all things red and green. Mailboxes and inboxes are filled with ads, sales, and catalogs. Prettily wrapped packages are at the forefront of nearly everyone’s minds — especially kids’.
Christmas provides a wonderful opportunity to pour the truths of the gospel into the hearts of our children. It’s an ideal time to show them the greatest gift they could ever receive, the gift of Jesus Christ.
Below is a list of important truths to teach our children this Christmas:
1. The Story of Redemption
During Advent, with the anticipation of the 25th, we can teach and prepare our child…
Finally, the son was born. Generation after generation had anticipated his birth and the world desperately needed him. Desperately.
Each day was a gloomy cloud of night. The darkness of death’s shadow filled the earth. Strife and quarrels multiplied without hindrance. The hearts of all mankind only conceived evil. In fact, “every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5). It actually was so bad that the detoxification of wickedness meant the complete de-creation of the world. God would start all over, if not for this one son.
They called him Noah.
The First Remnant
Long before the sons of Adam knew there would be a captive Israel (or even an Israel …