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Four New Year’s Resolutions (and Why I Made Them)

You’ve probably heard the statistics before. About half of the U.S. population makes New Year’s resolutions, but only eight percent of those who make resolutions succeed in keeping them.

So why do I, year after year, sit down with a sheet of paper and pen to write out resolutions for the upcoming year? Don’t the statistics indicate that I’m doomed to fail?

While there is certainly no biblical imperative to make resolutions, and their efficacy isn’t promising,  I tend to approach resolutions with the perspective of Dwight Eisenhower: “Plans are nothing.

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The Good Side of Getting Older

I turned 37 this year. Ouch.

I’m still single and there are several goals I thought I would have accomplished by now. Sometimes aging is depressing.

Our culture is pretty good at enforcing a negative opinion of aging. At every birthday we hear people grumbling about how old they are. They wish for the good ol’ days, or remember how earlier years were their best ones. And I know that women sometimes deal with this even more strongly if they want to have children and are approaching the later childbearing years.

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Best of 2016: Episode 465

Listen to this week’s show!

Question to discuss:

What was your favorite moment from the show in 2016?

Roundtable: Best Roundtables of 2016

This “best of” from roundtables of 2016 includes hope after the election, a physician panel on pornography, dealing with your parents’ divorce, and a conversation with Boundless fans Zac and Sally Crippen.  

Culture: Best Cultures of 2016

The best interviews of 2016 included discussions on the availability of single men in the United States, a winsome way to do evangelism, how to clear clutter from your life, and doing local church outreach in a cutting-edge way.

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Christmas Movies and the Post-Holiday Blues

The day after Christmas. Dishes lie in piles by the sink, the fridge is full of leftovers packed in Tetris-like, diets are discarded along with wrapping paper, and most family and friends have left, leaving behind a lonely, quiet sense in the house. The season feels deflated; even with New Year’s Eve around the corner, it’s as if the holiday is over, but without a dénouement.

For some, the holidays are still in full swing; after all, there’s still plenty of time for good cheer and merriment to make another round.

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You Have Permission to Be Happy

If you’re like me, this past year has felt like, well … an exercise in embracing “from bad to worse.” Not only has the world stage seemed to have more than its fair share of “downs,” but myself and many people I know have faced a myriad of rough circumstances in 2016. (Can I get an “Amen”?)

Recently my pastor was preaching on joy, and he made the very astute observation that Christians are pretty good at making a distinction between happiness and joy.

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Making Christmas Meaningful: Episode 464

Listen to this week’s show!

Question to discuss:

What do you do to ensure the Christmas holiday doesn’t get away from you? How do you slow down, take it all in, and bless others in the process?

Roundtable: What Christmas Means to Me

Christmas can be hard when you’re single. The solution isn’t to get depressed or bitter, but to instead find ways to infuse
meaning, tradition and joy into the holiday. Sometimes this means being extra creative and intentional.

Green garlands of fir or pine branches with red and gold Christmas toys door on the veranda.

Home for the Holidays

Countless Christmas songs are written about it. Countless videos are posted about it. But not everyone has a home to go to for the holidays. It’s not a good or bad thing. Sometimes, it just is what is.

That’s where I fit in. My father passed away when I was nine, and I have an estranged relationship with my mother. All of my mother’s side of the family is spread out across the country, and I’ve never been super close to my father’s side of the family.

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Principles for Decision Making and the Will of God

Most believers have wrestled with knowing and doing the will of God. It’s hard to know what guidance from the Holy Spirit looks like, or which decisions we should place before Him and which we are expected to make ourselves. Today I’d like to suggest some principles for decision making that I have found life-giving in my Christian walk.

In my first post on decision making and God’s will, I raised hard questions and asked for feedback.

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The Struggle Between Work and Leisure

There are few folks I know who aren’t obsessed with work—with being productive and busy, accounting for every second of every day. I have friends who either nurture or cast off friendships on the merit of how useful that person will be in their career. For all the hand-wringing of concerned Baby Boomers, Millennials are not as lazy and entitled as the headlines make them out to be.

We’ve forgotten how to rest well–how to account for our time without appealing to its productivity.

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Life Hacks to Living Your Masterpiece

Fortunately these days we don’t have to worry every waking minute about Mongols invading our land or locusts devouring our crops. With our slow-pour coffee in hand, a bag of unique resources within us, and avenues to touch the world at our fingertips, each morning we can look out over our inviting cityscapes and ask, “What will I do with this day?”

We can spend it trying to take the perfect selfie, being promoted to a corner office, or getting the most Instagram followers.