Blog Posts on Sanctification & Growth

The Merciful Gift of Desperation

Jon Bloom

Do not underestimate the power of desperation to do good for your soul.

A couple of years ago I listened to a sermon by a friend who leads a missionary team that has planted itself into one of the least reached nations in the world. The most optimistic estimates of the number of indigenous Christians in this nation is less than the number of people who attend Bethlehem Baptist Church…

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Don’t Waste Your Weaknesses in 2014

John Piper

In 2014, I encourage you to identify and exploit your weaknesses for the glory of Christ. I would like to give you an illustration from my own life, but first let me clarify what I mean.

Since 2007, millions of people have read books and taken inventories designed to find our strengths. These are useful for positioning people in places of maximum effectiveness.

God’s Work in Our Weaknesses

But…

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Trading One Dramatic Resolution for 10,000 Little Ones

Paul Tripp

I’ve told the story many times of talking impatiently with my wife one Sunday morning and having my nine-year-old son interject, “Daddy, is this the way a Christian man should be talking to his wife?”

Rather sarcastically I said, “What do you think?” He replied, “It doesn't make any difference what I think — what does God think?”

I went to my bedroom, and two thoughts immediately hit me. First,…

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Your Most Courageous Resolution for 2014

Jon Bloom

Pursue love. (1 Corinthians 14:1)

Resolutions are good things. They’re biblical: “may [God] fulfill every resolve for good” (2 Thessalonians 1:11). And I think developing New Year’s resolutions is a very good idea. A year is a defined timeframe long enough to make progress on difficult things and short enough to provide some incentive to keep moving.

A resolve is not a vague intention, like “one of these days I’m…

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Are Books Your Shell Collection?

Mike Leake

The glasses gave it away.

If it weren’t for those glasses, his unruly hair and wild beard would cause you to mistake him as a peddler. You’d reach your hands in your pocket in search for some coins. But those glasses — and the penetrating eyes behind them — give you pause.

This old man isn’t a beggar hardened by long nights on the streets — he’s a thinker, worn…

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Why We Click Stupid Links

Tony Reinke

By “stupid links,” I mean hyperlinks on the Web that do nothing but tap our kneejerk curiosity. They do little for us because they have little to offer. We click, we read, we watch, and often we feel dumber for it.

Such clamorous links litter the Internet, offering up celebrity gossip, bizarre crime stories, violent videos, and sexual images — each link asking for little more than a click (such…

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Three Prayers for Facing Monday (Or Any Tomorrow)

Jonathan Parnell

This is one of those really deep, common truths — one which Jonathan Edwards expounds with the intellectual horsepower of a genius, and to which our most common experience testifies:

Essential to our present joy is the anticipation of greater joy to come.

This is why, for example, the best part of going on vacation is often the day before we start it. The glad anticipation of what will be

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A Beer with Jesus?

Tony Reinke

Is it a sin for me to drink alcohol?

It could be, says Pastor John in today’s episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast.

“I’m a default teetotaler,” he says. “And what that means is if I have my choice, I don’t drink alcohol, but I might, to be a good guest. . . . But I don’t think anybody can make a case from Scripture that teetotalism is required.”

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Meet Grace’s Masterpiece

Marshall Segal

Do you find theology intimidating? Does it sound distant, cold, academic?

Maybe you’ve known people who are really into theology and don’t seem to love Jesus much, or don’t seem to go to the hard places where poverty, suffering, and unbelief live. So you stopped calling after a lousy first date.

But what if your stereotype of theology really isn’t theology? After all, at its simplest, to do theology is…

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