It really is an art to be able to write a 300-400 word devotion that expounds Scripture appropriately, brings Christ and the gospel to bear on the reader, is theologically sound, and at the same time easy and pleasant to read.
The Valley of Vision – Various authors, edited by Arthur Bennett. This has long been one of my favourites. This is a collection of prayers from Puritans and Puritan-minded folks. Prayers are here from Thomas Watson, John Bunyan, Charles Spurgeon and many others. My only complaint about this volume is that it doesn’t tell you where... Continue Reading
A Reflection on Kindness from Anthony Doerr’s All the Light We Cannot See
By Christ’s ultimate act of kindness in laying down his life for us on the cross, we are given new life.
Anthony Doerr’s Pulitzer-winning novel All the Light We Cannot See promises a story that “illuminates the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another.” This intricate work of historical fiction delivers on that promise and provides a compelling journey for any reader; but for the Christian, I believe it offers enduring lessons... Continue Reading
On the Mortification of Sin: A Reader’s Guide to a Christian Classic
Owen’s little book On the Mortification of Sin grew out of a series of sermons he preached while serving as Dean of Christ Church and Vice-Chancellor of Oxford.
Owen’s exposition of mortification, read carefully, will not ultimately make you sad, but profoundly and durably happy. It gives us tools for honest, energized, and relationally oriented Christian living. It fosters communion. So I recommend this book to you, dear reader, in the hope that you will learn from this Puritan master — not because the... Continue Reading
Why the Bible is the Only Book You Need on Race (from a Book on Race)
The Bible is sufficient for every matter of the heart.
If you have the Bible, you have everything you need to minister to souls. You don’t need to become an expert in African American history, critical race theory, or the American criminal justice system to talk about ethnicity today…If the Bible is sufficient, then the Bible is what you need. I want to briefly... Continue Reading
Why You Should Read J.I. Packer
Book Review: "Knowing God," by J. I. Packer
This is the primary benefit of knowing Packer: not to become more like him, but to be inspired to become more like Christ. Every pilgrim needs words to sustain us in the journey. The benefit of knowing Packer is having a wise, godly, and winsome companion along the way. I first met J. I.... Continue Reading
Singleness, Living Faithfully: True Identity
My starting place for rebuilding my sense of identity was the one name tag that wouldn’t be stripped away: “Daughter of God.”
This Christian identity is the most important thing about us. We are known and defined, first and foremost, not by our singleness but by our identity as sons and daughters of God. Our marital statuses, addresses, jobs, and church communities may change over time, but our identity in Christ remains constant. See what kind... Continue Reading
5 Bad Substitutes for Discipline
In her book Parenting Against the Tide, Ann Benton lists five poor substitutes for disciplining our children—five poor substitutes that fail to address the heart.
In this life we learn more by getting things wrong than by getting things right. It is one of the great routes to wisdom: Learn by your mistakes. A child has to have some independence in order to learn to take responsibility. They need to be let off the leash so that they will understand... Continue Reading
Deeper: Real Change for Real Sinners
Book Review: Ortlund continually brings us back to what is already true of us and presses it upon us more firmly.
Deeper is a rare book. It is applied theology. It is doctrine pressed on the heart. It is a book that enacts an approach to change rather than simply arguing for that approach. Dane C. Ortlund. Deeper: Real Change for Real Sinners. Crossway, 2021. 192 pages, hardback. $21.99. Dane C. Ortlund is the author of the widely-acclaimed... Continue Reading
Your Child Is Different, Not Less
God doesn’t make water boys. He creates image bearers: human beings blessed with the privilege of reflecting God’s character through whatever God given capacities they possess. This reality is caught more than taught. It is conveyed in how we treat others in our relationships and in how we treat our children throughout the day. ... Continue Reading
Patience Is Waiting on the Lord
Patience is a positive virtue. It’s not merely the absence of sin; it’s the pursuit of righteousness.
In the end, God always keeps perfect time. He never underestimates the amount of time it will take to accomplish a goal or to bring about a certain result. He never misjudges his own ability; he never miscalculates the moment to act. Because he is sovereign over all, his plans and purposes unfold precisely when... Continue Reading