Tim Challies

Who is Jesus?

This week, the blog is sponsored by the D3 Winter Conference, hosted by Boyce College. This year’s conference is designed to help high school students answer, with biblical fidelity, life’s most essential question: “Who is Jesus?” Registration is underway now for the March 10-11, 2023 in-person event.

Who is Jesus? Your answer to that question will ultimately determine your eternity. Yet, that is a question that Christians and non-Christians have been asking for more than 2000 years. As generations come and go it is vital that each new generation of Christians be challenged and equipped to answer this age-old question. Furthermore, it is paramount that younger (or newer) Christians answer this question from a biblically informed perspective. Who is Jesus according to the Bible?
In this current cultural climate, it is not uncommon for parents and pastors to wonder, is the younger generation of Christians prepared to contend for the faith once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 1:3)? In other words, is the 9th grader in your church youth group ready to defend their faith? Is the high school senior ready to articulate from a biblical worldview the person and work of Jesus on a college campus? These are urgent and timely questions for the next generation.
Today, Christians young and old are faced with competing ideas and claims concerning the identity of Jesus. Was he simply a wandering teacher? Was he a mythical figure used to pass down moral and meditative thoughts? These notions and others are commonly expressed in popular culture. Furthermore, many people, when talking about Jesus are prone to emphasize and highlight the qualities that best justify their personal opinions and perspective. Some want to emphasize his love, others his forgiveness, others his willingness to stand against the religious and political rulers of the day, and some are content to merely quote the words of Jesus that best serve their agenda.
So, back to the original question, Who is Jesus? At the outset of 2023, one could argue that it has never been more important for the next generation of Christians to be able to answer that timeless question. At the D3 Winter Conference we will challenge and equip high school students from the Bible to rightly understand and confidently respond to the question: Who is Jesus? Main speakers will include Drs. R. Albert Mohler Jr., Jimmy Scroggins, Paul Akin, and Rev. Scott Long. Breakouts will be led by Drs. Jeremy Pierre, Dustin Bruce, and Curtis Solomon. Over the course of the conference we will discuss the person and work of Jesus, the significance of his birth and death, be challenged by his words and commands, and discern what it really means to follow Jesus today.
At Boyce College and the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, we are passionate and intentional about equipping the next generation of Christians to serve the church and fulfill the Great Commission. One of the ways we seek to accomplish that purpose is through the D3 Winter Conference. This conference is designed for Christian high school students to develop and mature in their faith. The D3 Winter Conference will take place in Louisville, Kentucky on March 10-11, 2023. We look forward to seeing you there!

The Decay of the World and the Love of God

Do you ever find yourself wondering just how much the Lord loves us? Do you ever find yourself wondering just how good his purposes can be and just how glorious his plans? Do you ever find yourself wondering if God really cares?

I found myself pondering these matters the other day after a friend sent me an article about the precipitous rise of euthanasia in Canada. What politicians insisted would be nothing more than a means to hasten death for those who are terminally ill has actually become a means to prey upon the vulnerable.
While many request euthanasia to avoid pain in their final days, some are now using it simply because they are downcast or impoverished. Veterans who seek help for emotional turmoil are being offered the option of suicide. Those who can’t afford to live are being allowed to die. As the article says, “Since Canada legalized euthanasia in 2016, there has been a strange balancing act at the heart of its medical system. There is a national suicide prevention hotline you can call 24/7, where sympathetic operators will try to talk you out of killing yourself. But today there are also euthanasia hotlines, where operators will give you the resources you need to carry out your wish. Doctors and nurse practitioners are now in the business of saving the lives of some patients while providing death to others.” And all this is taking place before the rules grow even more permissive in the months ahead.
This is just one of many moral abominations that has taken root in the modern Western imagination—a context in which aborting babies is understood to be as inalienable a right as voting, in which even questioning the goodness of assisting children in transitioning from one gender to another (as if such a thing were even possible) is considered contemptible, in which the basic family structure that holds society together is being disparaged and undermined. “Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.”
If we were to list all of society’s ills we would be here all day and all night. And it brings to mind one of the Bible’s most sobering woes—one of its most terrifying warnings to those who turn from God’s ways. “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” We see all of this before us each and every day.
Yet my purpose here is not to recount the ways in which society curses God, but to consider God’s love for his people. There is a connection between the two. For as I have pondered society’s full-out rebellion against God, I also found myself marveling that he does not just strike this whole world and everyone in it with his hand of judgment. Why does he allow all this evil to continue? Why does he permit people to carry on and even deepen their rebellion against him?
Surely the answer is not apathy. Surely it is not inability or disinterest. There must be some other very good reasons. And the best I can figure is that those reasons must relate to God’s love and purposes.
God loves his people—the people he chose to be his own even before he created this world. Yet clearly not all of his people have yet been saved—nor probably even been born. God’s love for his people is so great that he will continue to tolerate all of this sin and rebellion, all of this hatred toward him, until the last of his chosen and beloved children has been born, has heard the gospel, and has been saved.
And then God has purposes he means to accomplish in this world, the foremost among them being glorifying himself. His purposes in this world must be so good and must bring such glory to his name that he permits evil to continue. For God freely makes use of the evil actions of men to bring about the best of his plans and accomplish the best of his purposes—purposes like the preservation of his people through famine and the salvation of his people through Christ’s crucifixion. Even the greatest evil is God’s servant to accomplish great good.
So the next time you are faced with the sheer depravity of this world, allow it to point you beyond the evil of man to consider the purposes of God. The next time you are forced to consider the rebellion that exists in the hearts of men, consider also the love that flows from the heart of God. You will see that his purposes are so good and his heart so tender that he will continue to allow mankind to rage against him and commit abhorrent acts so that he might welcome in all of his people and further the glory of his great name.

A La Carte (January 30)

Good morning. Grace and peace to you.

Today’s Kindle deals include several books in the Theologians on the Christian Life series.
Killed by what they thought would save them
“Seventy years ago, on the last Saturday morning in January, the MV Princess Victoria left the port of Stranraer in South-West Scotland. She was heading for Ireland with 179 people on board – but never arrived.” This article offers a few illustrations from the disaster.
Just because I’m religious, doesn’t mean I’m superstitious
“Has this ever happened to you? You’re speaking to someone about Christ and all of the sudden the conversation takes a turn for the weird. Not the normal weird of being a Christian in a fallen world, but I mean weird weird.”
Why Body Image is an Australian issue
Murray Campbell offers quite a long reflection on body image and related issues.
Unlocking Heaven
“Yet we know that locks can be picked. As our church’s resident locksmith knows, where there’s a will, there’s a way. Especially considering today’s use of electronic locks, it is possible to hack your way past any locked barrier if you have the right amount of knowledge and skill. Not so with heaven.”
How My Dying Friend Helped Me
Kevin considers some of what he learned from a dying friend.
The Picture Frame
“Whether in frames or boxes, we hold onto our happy memories, an older version of curating our lives before the advent of social media. Because we don’t snap pictures of tantrums, do we? Of the lies and defiance, the visits to hospitals and police stations, the long nights of illness or comforting broken teenage hearts?”
Flashback: The Key To Making the Most Out of Congregational Singing
Of course we sing to God, but we also sing for one another. God is the object of our worship, but our singing is also a means of mutual encouragement. In our singing, we all have equal opportunity to proclaim truth.

Laziness is not an infirmity; it is a sin. It affects the whole of our lives. —Alistair Begg

Sunday A La Carte

We have come to one of those rare weeks in which I collected so much good material for A La Carte that I couldn’t use it all. Instead, I chose some to add to this Sunday edition.

The Kind Providence of God
Jacob recounts ways in which he has been able to see God’s kind hand of providence. “In 2012, I began praying that the Lord would open a door for the gospel in North Korea. Soon after, I heard of an opportunity to teach nursing school in Pyongyang. Even better, all of the classes were to be taught in English. In 2015, I started a PhD program in order to eventually teach at that school.”
Leave the Throne of Guilt: Three Better Reasons to Pray
Scotty Smith: “Calloused knees. Prayer closet. Answered prayers. Prayer warrior. These four phrases don’t exactly trigger me with spiritual PTSD, but they do represent markers in my journey of moving from prayer-guilt into the grace of praying.”
Keep Doing The Small Things
“What if your greatest spiritual growth does not come through some cataclysmic event. What if the most important spiritual breakthroughs in your life are slow and methodical? Are you going to be OK with that?”
Jesus Is Worth It | HeartCry Films
You’ll enjoy this film from HeartCry. “Paul Snider has labored for ten years as a missionary to the Northern Korowai people in Papua, Indonesia. In the course of these years in the jungle, Paul was struck by a series of nearly fatal diseases, which forced him back to the States to recover. But by the grace of God, Paul determined to press on through his suffering and continue the work.”
Lesson for the Church from the Barnes & Noble Turnaround
“Few analysts expected brick-and-mortar bookstores to survive, much less thrive, in the 2020s. If you were placing bets a few years ago, you’d think digital would be the way to go: Facebook, Netflix, Crypto, or Tesla. But as Ted Gioia points out, digital media is struggling while Barnes & Noble, a 136-year-old book retailer, has begun to grow again.” Trevin Wax draws out some lessons for the church.
If I’m scared of mediocrity, I’ll never do anything
“We obviously don’t want to do stuff that is objectively low-grade and rubbish. But nor do we want to so over-professionalise everything that if we can’t make it absolutely, 100% A-grade, we won’t do anything at all. Does this mean we want, or must, aim for mediocrity? Well, kind of but kind of not.”
I hope there is something here you enjoyed. See you again tomorrow!

Weekend A La Carte (January 28)

My thanks goes to Desiring God for sponsoring the blog this week so they could ensure you know about John Piper’s newest book.

Today’s Kindle deals include newer and older books.
(Yesterday on the blog: The Overloaded Christian Life)
All Creation Groans
Barbaranne Kelly considers one way that creation groans. “These sweet dogs were not made in God’s image, nor do they possess souls that will live forever. They don’t stand before their Creator responsible for sin; Jesus didn’t die to redeem them. But, as the apostle Paul makes clear, they still suffer under the curse.”
Villainous Christianity in ‘The Whale,’ ‘The Wonder,’ and ‘Women Talking’
“Believers should pay attention to the ‘alternative gospels’ on offer in contemporary pop culture. If Christianity is seen more as an oppressor than a liberator, after all, something else must play the part of liberator. In each of the films discussed above, that ‘something else’ is the empowered self, through which salvation and ‘rebirth’ are achieved without appeal to the supernatural.”
When Good Doctrine Enables Abuse
Yes, people can and will twist even the best doctrine to evil uses.
God does not hear the prayers of unbelievers
“God does not grant them a hearing. That is, he turns a deaf ear to their prayer. Unbelievers have zero right of access to God. They have zero ability to petition him for anything. They have no grounds to expect God to work for them or answer their prayer.”
Most People Die on The Climb Down
John Onwuchekwa: “When it comes to both setting goals and climbing mountains, most of us misunderstand the assignment. We tend to define success by the described activity not the desired outcome. Don’t believe me? Just think about it. If someone says their goal is to climb Mount Everest, what would be the ultimate win? Making it to the top! Right? Wrong.”
The Scandal of the American Evangelical Intellectual
Justin Taylor shares a helpful insight from D.A. Carson. “I worry less about the anti-intellectualism of the less educated sections of evangelicalism than I do about the biblical and theological illiteracy, or astonishing intellectual compromise, among its leading intellectuals.”
Flashback: Help! I’ve Fallen Behind On My Bible Readings!
If you are struggling to maintain your Bible reading commitment…here are a few suggestions from some fellow fallen travelers along the way.

Self-deception is not the worst thing you can do, but it’s the means by which we do the very worst things. The sin that is most distorting your life right now is often the one you can’t see. —Tim Keller

The Overloaded Christian Life

It’s probably more than a little cliché to point out that we are a busy people who live in a busy time. And while we tend to think there is something unique to the modern context that pushes us especially hard toward overwork, as I have read the books of previous eras I have come to see that the issue transcends the trappings of the world as it is today. There may be some unique components to today’s context, but the issue is much deeper and much older. I dare say it is universal.

It is little wonder that we have a host of books meant to relieve our busyness, or at least to focus it. Many of these books are tremendously helpful and many of them offer useful guidance. The best of them go beyond technique to diagnose and correct the issue from a spiritual perspective. New to the field is a unique and uniquely challenging book from Ian Carmichael titled Busy: Tackling the Problem of an Overloaded Christian Life.
It bears mentioning from the outset that this is not a book that teaches processes or techniques. It is not meant to introduce a new system of productivity. Rather, it is meant to “avoid magic bullets and instead look with you at what God has to say in the Bible about busyness. By which I don’t mean looking for a verse in the book of Proverbs that says something vaguely connected with productivity and using it as a pretext to say what I wanted to say about productivity anyway. No, I mean going to the Bible in search of answers to some of the most fundamental questions about our life’s meaning and purpose—what God created us to do—and seeing what implications that has for our lives.”
In Carmichael’s framing of the issue, busyness is not necessarily bad and may actually be very good, just depending on how it is defined and understood. He begins with ensuring we understand a central truth of the Christian faith—that we are made in the image of God. An implication is that just as God works, so we were made to work. Hence “the bottom line is this: well-directed busyness is actually a good thing. It reflects the nature of God as a worker, and the truth that ‘whatever you do’ can be done ‘as for the Lord’ (Col 3:23). In other words, busyness is not necessarily the enemy. Busyness is definitely not a dirty word.” But then it’s equally true that we were made to rest—“to draw aside from our work and busyness to rest and remember God, and engage with him as our Creator and rescuer,” something he refers to as “God rest.”
At this point the book takes an unexpected turn as Carmichael introduces the Bible’s great metanarrative which he summarizes as going from Point A (creation) to Point B (new creation). Knowing that we are saved by grace frees us from the need to try to earn our salvation and frees us to obey God in leading others from Point A to Point B—to essentially be busy in this crucial work that God has assigned to us through both evangelism and discipleship. This is work we engage in through the local church and through our private lives—work which needs to play a key role in the decisions we make in life.

The mistake we are tempted to make is in thinking about it as my agenda for my life. That is a wrong way to think about it as Christians, because “it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me”. The life agenda we adopt has to now be thought of as Jesus’ agenda for his life in me. As Christians, we must relinquish any sense of entitlement to the control of our lives or the setting of our own priorities, whilst at the same time thoughtfully setting priorities and making choices about what we do.

What we Need to do is find the right balance of work and rest as we pursue the priorities God has assigned to us.
At the end there are several appendices dealing with matters such as paid employment, the local church, and family life. But there is no app to download, no journal to buy, no technique to master. There is instead much to ponder, much to pray about, and perhaps much to course-correct.
Busy offers a unique take on busyness and one that strikes to the very heart of our God-given purpose. It is a book that blessed and challenged me and, I trust, one that will bless and challenge you as well. I am glad to recommend it.

A La Carte (January 27)

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you today.

All My Not-Enoughness
Britt reflects on her “not-enoughness” in this poignant article.
Caesar Said to Brutus
Zach and Maggie (whom you’ll recognize from The Gettys’ live shows) have released a fun and quirky album. Here’s a video from it. You can find the full album on all the usual apps and platforms.
Come, Lord Jesus by John Piper
Crossway has published an important new book by John Piper entitled Come, Lord Jesus: Meditations on the Second Coming of Christ. For the launch, Desiring God has partnered with Westminster Bookstore to offer the hardcover edition at 40% off. (Sponsored Link)
Pastors Around the World Apply Romans 13
I found this article from Elliott Clark very interesting. “I reached out to church leaders from around the world, asking how they apply Paul’s command to ‘be subject to the governing authorities’ (Rom. 13:1). These believers hail from all sorts of countries—where persecution is overt and political or more social, where Christians are an extreme minority or nominalism is normal, where there’s relative peace and security or rampant political instability.”
Some Thoughts on the Dating of the Book of Revelation
Kim Riddlebarger considers the dating of the book of Revelation.
If We Do Not Give Up
“How long must a wife bear witness to Christ before her unbelieving husband? How long must parents pray for a child who hasn’t trusted Christ? Why does so much sowing not result in reaping? Why do the due seasons seem to come later than we’d expect, if ever?”
Ivan Provorov and the Pressure to Punish LGBT+ Dissent
Trevin Wax: “Why are these battles so heated? Why do so many in our society demand everyone show their support for LGBT+ causes? Why the insistence on preferred pronouns? Why the expectation there will be ‘consequences’ for someone who, out of religious conviction, respectfully dissents from the prevailing view?”
Flashback: A Few Practical Pointers on Marriage
No one is more harmed by your sin and no one is more blessed by your sanctification than your spouse. If you love your husband or wife, then give them the gift of holiness. Be holy for the benefit of that person you love the most.

A man has no more right at table to talk all than to eat all. —C.H. Spurgeon

A La Carte (January 26)

The God of love and peace be with you on this fine day.

There’s a good little collection of Kindle deals for you to explore today.
(Yesterday on the blog: On Letting Your Kids Go)
A decade of musical worship
This is a very helpful series of reflections on congregational singing.
Do You Need Counseling? 6 Questions to Help You Discern
Eliza Huie: “If you’ve ever wondered if you might benefit from counseling, here are six questions to determine the answer.”
That Succinct Single-Sentence Summary
“What is the difference between one sentence and half an hour? That is a key question in preaching.” Peter Mead explains.
The Bible of “Trumpists”? Hardly.
“Over the weekend, sociologist Samuel Perry raised eyebrows by suggesting that the ESV is the official Bible translation for ‘Trumpists.’” Denny Burk responds to that ridiculous charge with a helpful post on Bible translations.
Matthew Anderson’s Rules For Success in the Ministry
I really enjoyed this one. “In his autobiographical Presbyterianism: Its Relation to the Negro, Anderson is careful to ascribe all of his success in the ministry to the good hand of God upon him, and to certain rules that he followed in his pastoral career. Here is the list of rules that guided Matthew Anderson’s ministry…”
How a Pagan Philosopher Came to Believe the Scriptures are from God
“It is noteworthy that throughout the history of the church many Christians have ascertained the divine origins of the Bible in yet another way: they read it. Rather than being persuaded through a deep dive into the historical evidences, many have come to believe the Bible is from God by observing its distinctive character and power.”
Flashback: A Message for Young Men
From the day he laid eyes on his beautiful little girl, he knew he would some day lead her down a church aisle to place her hand in another man’s. And so he began to pray for him.

No matter where you have been, what you have done, or what has been done to you, the grace of God can wash you clean, consecrate you as his child, and restore what sin has stolen. —Garrett Kell

On Letting Your Kids Go

I won’t ever forget the day we dropped Nick at college. We had driven him down to Louisville, Kentucky where he had enrolled in pre-seminary studies at Boyce College. We had helped get his little dorm room all set up. We had dropped by the bookstore and picked up the last of his textbooks. We had attended the orientation meetings and the chapel service. We had huddled together to pray. And now there was just one thing left to do—begin our journey home and leave him behind.

As I drove along Lexington Road and made my way toward I-64, Aileen sat beside me and wept. She did not weep gently. She did not weep in such a way as to have a few tears trickle gently down her cheeks. No, she wept as if her heart had been torn in two. Hours later we arrived home and, as we began to settle in for the evening, I had my own moment of emotion when it came time to lock the doors, for I realized that I was no longer locking all my children in to the safety of our home, but this time locking one of them out.
We adjusted quickly, of course. Nick thrived at Boyce and we took great joy in his joy. How could we lament his absence when he was doing so well, learning so much, and growing so substantially in wisdom and godliness? Two years later we had to do it again when Abby headed down to join him. We found her departure a little bit easier having gone through it once, but also a little bit harder in that it came in the midst of a pandemic that had very nearly closed the border between our countries. In August of this year we will do it all again, Lord willing, when Michaela journeys down to take up her studies there. This time we will be empty-nesters, at least for the duration of the school year.
A friend recently asked for some guidance for parents whose children are leaving home, perhaps to go to school or perhaps to join the military or perhaps just to begin an independent life. “What counsel might you give them” she asked? I thought I’d take a few minutes to consider it. Here’s what I came up with.
First, I would encourage parents to deliberately begin loosening their oversight well before their children leave. We do not serve our children well when we maintain rigid control over them while they are in the home but then simply release them when they leave. It’s far better to begin to release control when we are still present to observe and to guide them. It’s not the worst thing in the world if they fail a few times when mom and dad are still nearby to provide them a soft landing.
Second, treat them like adults. You need to do your kids the dignity of treating them like grown-ups and not like children. This involves giving them adult privileges, but also requiring adult expectations. I expect you will generally find that they are eager to prove themselves by rising to those expectations.
Third, I would encourage those parents to carefully distinguish between matters of preference and matters of absolute right and wrong. What I mean is that your child is probably going to be out of your home for all of two weeks before they get a tattoo or a piercing, or before they begin sporting some new fashion choices or a new hairstyle. Kids who are raised in a Christian home often seem to feel the need to express themselves in ways like these. And while it may not be your preference, you’ll need to consider whether or not you treat them as if they’ve sinned. (Hint: they probably haven’t; also, see my second point above.)
Fourth, help them find a good church. Make sure that when they depart to a new school they are also departing to a new church. I’m always glad when parents contact me to say, “my child is moving to Toronto to go to school; can you tell me about your church?” I’m always glad to welcome those students when they begin to attend. And I’m sure most pastors are the same. I would generally encourage students to become members of the church they go to when at school since they will be there for more time than they’ll be at home. Plus, it’s good for them to go through a membership process independent of their parents.
Fifth, clarify expectations about relationships. It would be helpful for you to distinguish between “I think it would be wise for you to refrain from dating during your freshman year so you can focus on adjusting to college and building friendships” versus “I forbid you to date in your freshman year.” Give them that clarity and remember to treat them like adults.
Sixth, write them letters. I’m sure you’ll be calling, texting, and FaceTiming with your kids, but there is still something special about letters. Leave a letter with your children when you drop them off for the first time and then make it your habit to write to them every few weeks. They may not reply since you probably never taught them how to write and address a letter but they will read, keep, and treasure the ones you send them. Also, why not send them care packages from time to time.
Seventh, find the balance between letting them go and remaining involved in their lives. Don’t stalk them or obsess about them, but also don’t utterly abandon them. Remain in contact and make yourself available for counsel. But also be sure to grant them their independence. It may take some trial and error, but you’ll find the right balance.
Finally, commend them to the grace of God, trusting in your own heart that God loves them even more than you do and that his plan for them is even better than your own. Pray for them and pray with them as you part and make this your final and ultimate petition before the Lord: nevertheless, not as I will but as you will.
Oh, and remember to treat them like adults. But I’m pretty sure we already covered that.
(Got something to add? Feel free to leave a Facebook comment.)

A La Carte (January 25)

The Lord be with you and bless you today.

There are a couple of new Kindle deals for you today.
How to Think about God Promoting His Own Glory
Amy Hall: “Many people misinterpret God’s character when looking at his demands and actions in history because they imagine what they would think of a fallen human being who did the things God has done, and they recoil. Failing to picture God as he is, they picture instead what they’re familiar with—a sinful, human tyrant imposing his preferred laws on people by force, destroying nations, or demanding worship.”
The Many Odd Uses and Abuses of Matthew 18
Keith considers an oddity that often “happens when disagreements and conflict within the body of Christ arise—Matthew 18 seems to become the solitary text of scripture able to be discussed. It is as though the whole enterprise hinges upon that single verse!”
Come, Lord Jesus by John Piper
Crossway has published an important new book by John Piper entitled Come, Lord Jesus: Meditations on the Second Coming of Christ. For the launch, Desiring God has partnered with Westminster Bookstore to offer the hardcover edition at 40% off. (Sponsored Link)
Fighting Forgetfulness
I appreciate Sue’s reflection on how she fights spiritual forgetfulness. “I’m a list maker. But it’s not because I am an efficient, super-organized, home administrator. It’s because I’d otherwise forget.”
Four Reasons Scripture Memory Might Just Be My Favorite Spiritual Discipline
Meanwhile, on a somewhat similar note, Cindy tells why Scripturememorization is her favorite spiritual discipline.
Recovering Proverbs 22:6 for a New Generation
“Years ago, this verse was understood as a discipleship verse. Parents thought, ‘if I train up my child in the Christian faith, then when he is older, he will not depart from that faith.’ It was understood as a promise. As a result of thinking this way, when young people walked away from the faith, these parents felt guilt.”
Photographers, Can You Do Us Cross-Cultural Bloggers a Favor?
Here’s an interesting request: “Could you help out us cross-cultural bloggers? It’s not easy finding good photos for the kind of topics that show up in our writing, and, frankly, it can end up adding a last level of stress before we hit the publish button.”
Flashback: Shedding Tears Over Sorrows That May Never Come
I know God promises grace sufficient for every trial, but only trials that have actually happened, that exist in the real world rather than in the world of fantasy. I know God’s power is made perfect in genuine weakness, not imagined.

God has designed and equipped the Christian life for perseverance that reaches beyond our own benefits…Our faithfulness isn’t just for us. It announces to the world that Jesus is worth every drop of our devotion. —Glenna Marshall

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