A Father’s Prayer

Father of all fathers, and of Jesus Christ our Lord, Fatherhood is a great mystery. The calling is majestic, and the dangers real. We love our children, and we long to love them better, but we fail so frequently. We worship you as the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and marvel at … More A Father’s Prayer

Growing Up: Six Basic Steps toward Maturity

How can young people move toward maturity? How can adolescents grow into young adults? How can college students move through the college years with increasing integrity, character, maturity, skill, and productivity? Here are six basic steps to help the saplings of the next generation add rings as they reach for the light. 1. Wake Up: Desire … More Growing Up: Six Basic Steps toward Maturity

A Prayer for Friendship

Holy Father, You exist as one God in three persons. Yours is the perfect spirit of friendship. We rejoice to know you and be known by you. Draw your people together into this holy spirit of friendship so that we might fellowship face-to-face and shoulder-to-shoulder, feasting and working alike, in joyful bonds of covenant love. … More A Prayer for Friendship

ASKED: How should I decide what to memorize?

If you want to begin memorizing Scripture, how should you decide where to start? A student asked this question yesterday in Spiritual Life Dynamics. After some class discussion, here were my three basic recommendations. 1. Scripture you love. Hunger is the best spice. If you want to start memorizing, it may be wise to start … More ASKED: How should I decide what to memorize?

A Prayer for Patience

Holy Father, When I ponder the world, the church, and especially my own life, I am astonished at your patience. Your long-suffering is beyond comprehension. We, your church, stand in loving amazement at your united patience as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Loving Father, you patiently chose us, patiently made us, patiently redeemed us, and … More A Prayer for Patience

Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah Revisited (4)

Here’s the fourth installment of my ongoing series of quotes from Dr. John Hannah of Dallas Seminary. The context of each quote is in bold, and it’s helpful to keep in mind that each statement was made in a specific educational context with its free-flowing atmosphere. It’s also helpful to keep in mind that Dr. … More Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah Revisited (4)

Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah Revisited (3)

What happens when you combine one of the best minds the Christian church has ever known (Jonathan Edwards) with one of the most quotable professors I’ve ever encountered? A cascade of wit and wisdom like what you’ll find below. Quotes from Wednesday’s Class Theological controversies: If you don’t define terms agreeably before a controversy, you’ll just … More Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah Revisited (3)

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

Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah Revisited (2)

I’m continuing to share penetrating quotes from Dr. John Hannah’s class on Jonathan Edwards, one of the most memorable classes I ever took. Quotes from Tuesday’s Class Reading the Bible: The first book you need is a Bible. I recommend reading it. Many don’t. They study it. I’ve been at seminary for 38 years, and the … More Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah Revisited (2)

Chains Shall He Break: The Jewish Messiah, the Christian Church, and the Hope of Justice

The Christian tradition has a complicated relationship with justice. In some situations, Christianized systems have been terribly unjust; in other situations, Christians have led the way toward justice. Sometimes Christians have denied that societal justice should be a concern of the faithful; at other times, Christians have decried any model of Christian theology that downplays … More Chains Shall He Break: The Jewish Messiah, the Christian Church, and the Hope of Justice

Reading for the Story: An Invitation to Read Large Portions of Scripture

Have you ever started watching a movie late at night, on a whim, only to have your better reason kick in and exchange the entertainment for a better night’s sleep? Or walked into a theater five minutes late and missed the opening scenes of a film? Or watched only bits and pieces of a documentary … More Reading for the Story: An Invitation to Read Large Portions of Scripture

The Moral of the Story and the Story of the Moral

You know the moral of the story. Everyone knows the moral of the story. But do you know the story behind the moral? Every story teaches powerful lessons, whether explicitly or implicitly. We pick up on these lessons, by ethical osmosis, even if we don’t get them quite right or we wonder what exactly the … More The Moral of the Story and the Story of the Moral