Drops of Grace: The Limits and Opportunities of Momentary Ministry

It happened right after a Saturday night message at a church I was visiting. I had just finished my third message for a youth retreat when a 14-year-old I’ll call “Megan” found me at the back of the auditorium. She had heard me say the night before that I knew serious things were going on … More Drops of Grace: The Limits and Opportunities of Momentary Ministry

ASKED: Should my personality influence my ministry?

“Should my personality influence my ministry?” A female student recently asked this question in a discussion about counseling, but it applies to any responsibility a person might hold. Whether leading, managing, preaching, organizing, parenting, or discipling, we often wonder how our personalities should affect our Christian responsibilities. The longer we live, the more we see that … More ASKED: Should my personality influence my ministry?

Trailing the Prophets: Pornography’s New Firefighters and the Church’s Prophetic Witness

They just keep coming. Now it’s rabbi-counselor Shmuley Boteach and actress-model Pamela Anderson joining the growing outcry against pornography. Their joint Wall Street Journal article, “Take the Pledge: No More Indulging Porn”, arrives like an amateur medic rushing into a graveyard to inform the deceased that death is dangerous for us. The article is generally laudable. The timing … More Trailing the Prophets: Pornography’s New Firefighters and the Church’s Prophetic Witness

“He Withholds No Good Thing from Us”: Marriage, Miscarriage, and the Goodness of God (by Bryan Baise)

Bryan Baise is a beloved professor at Boyce College, soon-to-be PhD in philosophy, husband to Danielle and father of three, and my friend and office neighbor. When I was in Student Life, students talked constantly about his classes, and I always found him deeply compassionate and wise when we worked together to help students who … More “He Withholds No Good Thing from Us”: Marriage, Miscarriage, and the Goodness of God (by Bryan Baise)

ASKED: Should a younger Christian ever correct an older Christian?

ASKED: A New Feature This semester I’m teaching 230 students in four biblical counseling classes at Boyce College, the undergraduate school at Southern Seminary. CN101a: Introduction to Biblical Counseling CN101b: Introduction to Biblical Counseling CN201: Methods of Biblical Counseling CN481: Counseling Skills Development I Depending on time and topic, students ask 10-20 questions per class, and many … More ASKED: Should a younger Christian ever correct an older Christian?

The Christian Imagination: Depression, Hope, and a Better Reality (by Jeremy Pierre)

Occasionally I share resources I’ve found helpful. These are my personal notes from a session with Dr. Jeremy Pierre at Southern Seminary’s recent Counsel the Word conference. These are not the speaker’s notes, nor are they a manuscript or transcript of the lecture, although I recorded the main points verbatim. Speaker: Dr. Jeremy Pierre | Dean of … More The Christian Imagination: Depression, Hope, and a Better Reality (by Jeremy Pierre)

The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert by Rosaria Champagne Butterfield (Review)

The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert by Rosaria Champagne Butterfield (Crown & Covenant, 2012) is a bloodbath. It’s littered with crucified clichés. Her story, and its deft retelling, remind us that death is death and life is life, and neither are anything but revolutionary. Butterfield was a tenured English professor at Syracuse University specializing in … More The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert by Rosaria Champagne Butterfield (Review)

Temptation Is Bigger Than You Think

In the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus taught his disciples to make this regular request: “lead us not into temptation” (Matthew 6:13a). Perhaps because “temptation” sounds so ominous, believers and non-believers alike typically view it as a noticeable, passing, one-time event. We certainly see these types of temptations in the Bible: Adam and Eve in the garden (Genesis 3:1-7), Jesus in … More Temptation Is Bigger Than You Think

Letter to a Sorrowful, Suffering Saint

How do you encourage someone after a tragic loss? How do you minister to someone languishing in discouragement? There’s no simple answer, and certainly no one-size-fits-all solution. The most helpful initial responses are counterintuitive: presence, sympathy, listening, and hands-on help. Inexperienced counselors or fix-it friends often err by rushing to offer solutions and explain truth before the person has … More Letter to a Sorrowful, Suffering Saint

The Sympathy of Christ and the Throne of Grace

Thrones are not where you go for grace. “The rulers of the Gentiles,” Jesus said, “lord it over them” (Mark 10:42). Sovereigns are not often known for their sympathy. So when we read that we have (a) a “great high priest” (b) “who has passed through the heavens” (c) as the very “Son of God” … More The Sympathy of Christ and the Throne of Grace