• A Mother’s Work

    Ernst_Lindenbauer,_1936 Wanting to be a horse was probably a mommy low point. Not just any horse, mind you. One of my kids was studying the Lipizzaners in Vienna’s Spanish Riding School; as I helped with some research, I found myself envying the horses. Not only do they live in a historic building in a European capital, but they also do nothing beyond go for long walks and occasionally jump to live orchestral music. They are taken care of. Totally. “I could live off of apples and oats,” I told myself. When my husband came home from work, I announced my new career plan. The pressure of constantly caring for everyone else’s needs made me lose focus.

    Mothers need breaks now and then. But even more than that, we need perspective. And that’s easy to lose when the dishes are piled up and the baby won’t stop crying and the toddler refuses to be toilet trained. Continue reading

  • Keeping Faith Steadfast

    IMG_6341“One of the most significant growth points in the believer’s life is the dawning realisation that Christian doctrine matters for Christian living. How we live as God’s children will be shaped by the impact of God’s truth upon our minds and hearts. This is so basic; and yet it can hardly be denied that many Christians languish in the shadows of God’s love when they should be basking in the noon-day sunshine of his love, and all because they fail to make the connection between believing the truth and enjoying the truth.

    This is perhaps nowhere more evident than in the lack of assurance that blights the lives of many Christians. Continue reading

  • Authenticity, Honesty, and the Stay-At-Home-Mother

    clean-up At the Gospel Coalition, Brett McCracken takes on authenticity as an evangelical substitute for holiness. He asks, “by focusing on brokenness as proof of our ‘realness’ and ‘authenticity,’ have evangelicals turned ‘being screwed up’ into a badge of honor, its own sort of works righteousness?” Yup. And perhaps few are as guilty as us wives and mothers.

    The mommy wars have made great advances in battling the false fronts of picture-perfect blog posts, where dinners always look fabulous, children are always beautifully dressed, and husbands always come home with roses. But we’ve replaced those filtered versions of our lives with other versions: Continue reading

  • When Divorce is Good and Holy

    775px-Yury_Pen-Divorce Why is infidelity so rampant and pornography so prolific in the evangelical church?

    Is it in part because we fail to see lawful divorce as good and holy?

    Here is a not unheard-of scenario in the life of the church: a wife discovers the devastating, sickening reality that her spouse is an adulterer. The husband is either engaged in a physical affair with someone else, or virtual, pornographic affairs with multiple others. The betrayed spouse calls her elder or pastor. The leadership of the church steps in to provide shepherding, counsel, and discipline. Continue reading

  • Proverbial Maturity

    541px-Old_and_wise Personal maturity is something that we want to attain, but often we don’t know what it is. It’s easier to name a mature person than it is to explain what makes them mature. Part of the difficulty is that there are different aspects to maturity; social, intellectual, spiritual, and emotional maturity can be expressed in different degrees in the same person. Someone can be socially mature and spiritually immature, or intellectually mature and emotionally immature. All maturity is connected, though; true social maturity only comes as spiritual maturity increases. Continue reading

  • Finding Comfort

    Otley CemeteryWhere do you find hope and comfort in life, and where will you as you face death? One Christian testimony answers:

    My only comfort is “that I with body and soul, both in life and death, am not my own, but belong to my faithful Savior Jesus Christ; who, with His precious blood, has fully satisfied for all my sins, and delivered me from all the power of the devil; and so preserves me that without the will of my heavenly Father, not a hair can fall from my head; in fact, all things must work together for my salvation, and therefore, by His Holy Spirit, He also assures me of eternal life, and makes me sincerely willing and ready from now on to live for Him.” Continue reading

  • Growth in Grace

    IMG_3662“‘But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be glory both now and forever! Amen.’ 2 Peter 3:18

    Growth in grace is evidenced by a more habitual vigilance against besetting sins and temptations, and by greater self-denial in regard to personal indulgence.

    A growing conscientiousness in regard to what may be called minor Christian duties is also a good sign. (The counterfeit of this is an over-scrupulous conscience, which sometimes haggles at the most innocent gratifications, and has led some to hesitate about taking their daily food.)

    Increasing spiritual-mindedness is a sure evidence of progress in piety; and this will always be accompanied by increasing deadness to the world. Continue reading

  • Why the Incarnation?

    morning star“He himself likewise shared in the same [flesh and blood]…” (Hebrews 2:14)

    But why? Why would he, the eternal Son of God, the heir of all things, the Creator of all, the brightness of God’s glory, do this? Why would he take on our nature for all eternity? Why was he “conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary”? Jesus did not do this simply for the sake of a shared experience; he was not a divine cultural tourist. His incarnation was and is an active, willing, pursuit of a multifaceted goal. Hebrews 2 gives at least nine reasons why the Son of God has identified with His people by His incarnation: Continue reading