Welcome to another edition of “Links I Like,” a weekly roundup of news, stories, and links that have impacted me throughout the past week.
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Now onto the links!
3 Reasons Pastors Should Write
I’ve mentioned before, but writing is, perhaps, one of the most cathartic exercises I’ve engaged in as I’ve developed spiritually and theologically. And while I enjoy writing and publishing a piece and see you read it, the real benefit is for me. This blog is as much for my own enrichment as it is yours. That might seem selfish but as I am inspired to write and work through a text of Scripture or truth about God and His gospel, the work is being done on me. My wife might say, now, that I’m addicted to writing. I enjoy the experience of putting down words in creative ways that exalt the glory and majesty of our Savior. And as with Obbie, I also contend that pastors should engage in the art of writing. “Good writing at the desk fuels good delivery behind the pulpit.” continue reading→
Birds in the Pulpit
A pastor normally takes his place behind the pulpit with a few things in hand. A Bible, his notes, perhaps some water, and maybe a watch to make sure he doesn’t go too long. I usually have my iPad in hand, from which I preach. Nevertheless, whenever a pastor steps into the pulpit, it’s paramount that he also carries with him two birds. These, as Chad explains, are the birds of God’s law and God’s gospel. Each carries with it a particular function and bears an important message for the people of God. continue reading→
For the Pastor with a Bad Case of ‘The Mondays’
As a pastor’s kid, I know firsthand of the travails of Mondays. Mondays have a reputation of being the most loathsome day of the week, being the first day after the weekend, usually accompanied by little amounts of sleep. Mondays are similarly difficult for pastors. Unbeknownst to many, but the day after Sunday brings with it a load of challenges and troubles that the Lord’s day doesn’t hold. The defeatism and discouragement that can swiftly set in after a less-than-stellar service or sermon casts an ominous shadow over this day. But take heart, pastors and all those in ministry. God is for you. “You can’t disappoint him, because you can’t surprise him. He sees your bad sermons coming.” A wonderfully encouraging word from Jared Wilson, here. continue reading→
The Dovetail Nature of Scripture
“The very best commentary on the Bible is the Bible itself.” Modern debate enthusiasts won’t like this line of reasoning, but the sure fact of Scripture is that its truth bears witness to it being true. It is God’s book of self-disclosure, encompassing the vast reaches of human history to gloriously display the beautiful motif of redemption, which was established by the Father before the foundations of the world. Sometimes we can get lost in the bevy of verses and chapters, forgetting that this book has a singular narrative and sole hero: Jesus Christ. This is an excellent piece by Barry York via Gentle Reformation. continue reading→
The Pastoral Art of Showing Up
A pastor’s job doesn’t begin and end on Sundays. A sermon delivered is really only a small sliver of his responsibilities. Some pastors, though, get caught up with the more showy aspects of their ministry and seem to leave the administrative or mundane tasks to be delegated and tackled by others. This shouldn’t be and, in actuality, is a rejection of the actual point of the pastoral office, that is, to shepherd people. This means so much more than just preaching to them and shaking their hand as they leave Sunday morning worship. This means showing up. Great article here from my friend Mitch Miller. Pastors would do well to take this to heart. continue reading→
Drunks On Horseback
Two pitfalls of modern Christianity that remain are treating God like a spiritual genie and treating prayer like the ancient chant to unlock those 3 wishes. Only with this God, our wishes are unlimited. Americans everywhere treat the God of the Bible is this disgusting manner, going to Him only for what He can bless us with and remembering to pray in a certain manner to “ensure” those blessings. But as Paul reminds us, these ditches can be dissolved the longer we’re reveling in and remembering the uncanny manner in which we’ve been swept up into God’s story. By the death of the Son on the cross, we’ve been given a way to live in His “massive, eternal, grace-laced story.” continue reading→
A Church That Welcomes Sinners
The Church is, perhaps, one of the most mistaken doctrines in the Christian faith. The world’s view of it is all the evidence we need that we’ve presented it wrongly and misconstrued its purpose. So many who don’t know Christ and are struggling or enduring a severe time of life, often treat the church as the last possible resort. “I’m not good enough for church,” they might say. And so it is that Christians was reversed the order of the body of Christ, making about good people encouraging people to get better — when in reality, the church is all about bad people hearing the good news that Christ loves them and tenaciously seeks after them. This is a great piece by Silverio Gonzalez via CCC Discover on the nature of a church that welcomes sinners. continue reading→
Song of the Week
“All That Matters” by Colton Dixon.