Basking in the Benefits of the Fear of the Lord
The benefits of fearing the Lord are worth basking in. In my survey of the Scriptures, I identified three categories concerning the benefits of the fear of the Lord—with God, with others, and with ourselves. Some of the categories overlap, but I have assigned most to just one category for simplicity. The first beneficial category of the fear of the Lord involves our relationship with the Lord. At the top of the list, we are acceptable to God (Acts 10:35). Not only are we acceptable to God, but we have a friendship with Him (Psa 25:14). Furthermore, His eye is on those who fear Him (Psa 33:18). With His eye…
Trust in the Lord
The difference between Christianity and all other religions is summed up in the word, relationship! In America, we put the words, “In God we Trust” on every bill that goes into our pocket. By the way we act when there are no dollars in our pocket, I would say we trust more in the dollar than we do in our God. Relationship is built on trust. So how do we teach our children to trust in God? Our children come into this world totally dependent. We believe it is our goal to teach them to become independent adults. What if that goal is not the best one after all? They…
Leadership and Friendship—Are They Mutually Exclusive?
With whom can you be yourself—totally raw and without filters—without expectations? Someone recently asked me this question. Several names came to mind, but I realized my list was short. This person advised, “You need these types of people in your life, people who will listen to you without expectations or judgment, with whom you can climb down off the mentorship and ministry pedestal.” Regardless of the world in which you work or serve—corporate, construction, education, marketing, medical, ministry, research, restaurant, the arts, or the home—being a leader can make finding raw-and-without-filters friendships difficult. Why is that? First, leaders are visionaries. They lead the charge. They think outside the box.…
Disabled Persons Bring Insights for Healthy Relationships
This summer I had the privilege of being a counselor at a camp for disabled persons. The counselors and campers enjoyed a week of swimming, horseback riding, fishing, bowling, paddle boats, crafts, Bible lessons, and worship. In the midst of the earthly activities, heavenly insights for healthy relationships with God and others emerged. I was blessed to be 24/7 with a blind person for the week. During the week, I noticed aspects of a healthy relationship with God. I learned quickly to go at the speed that she could walk at. Adjusting my speed to her reminded me of how God meets us where we are at. He knows our…
Cultivating Friendships & Female Allies
Listen to the nightly news, read just-released statistics, talk to a few friends––and you’ll hear over and over again the hard realities of mandated isolation, increased challenges in daily life, and mounting obstacles as working women navigate the lingering effects of this pandemic. Now more than ever we need to forge bonds of sisterhood with the women in our circles.
Home School Syndrome
I highly recommend that every parent and teacher read Paul David Tripp’s book, Parenting, 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family. Learning better how to wield our authority will revolutionize our homes and churches.
How to Embrace Necessary Change
Seasons of life change, careers change, organizations change, and relationships and friendships change. Change is—as they say—inevitable. How do you deal with change? Do you embrace it, reluctantly (and stubbornly) submit to it, or run full-speed in the opposite direction of it? I’m a loyal person by default. Perhaps you are as well. I’m loyal to good people, good organizations, and good products. There’s nothing wrong with loyalty per se, except when that loyalty exceeds the season for which that allegiance is needed. Thus I find I struggle with change. Well-known author, leadership coach, and clinical psychologist Dr. Henry Cloud believes that if we do not embrace necessary change (i.e.…
Victoria Monet shares a poem relevant to many conversations about race on social media. In her poem "un-cursory," she highlights themes of humility and redemptive relationships in light of racial reconciliation.
“Zoom”ing In on Community: What the Pandemic Reminds Us About Connection
“The physical presence of other Christians is a source of incomparable joy and strength to the believer.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer. This week I had my 657th Zoom call. Ok, slight exaggeration, but between work meetings, online church, family gatherings, and weekly bible study, my Apple screen time report has been off the charts. Zoom and other video teleconferencing mechanisms have become my near sole source of “direct” contact with the world outside my neighborhood. Though I’m grateful for the technology that allows me to see the faces of my colleagues, friends, and loved ones, I’ve found this sort of engagement to be helpful, but tiring. A space to connect, but a…
Theology of Self-Care
Once again, I’m thankful to have Victoria Monet guest blogging for me. Victoria is from Georgetown, Texas. She loves her husband, son, dog, and impacting others’ everyday theology through creative writing and teaching. She writes poetry and topical articles on her blog “Theology Reflected.” *** Is self-care selfish or unspiritual? Some churches and Christian circles say “yes.” And while today’s popular self-care strategies may have a bent toward self-serving interests, a biblical perspective of self-care is holistic, worshipful, and others-centered. Self-Care Involves All Aspects of Ourselves God designed us as complex, whole persons (Ps. 139:13–16). We do not—like a computer or machine—consist of parts, but encompass spiritual, physical, mental, emotional,…