Learning how to trust His plan when you don't like the answers.
When life kicks you, it's easy to become disoriented. Counseling is simply a way of pressing the "reset button."
That night I decided that if I was going to worship, I would do it with all my heart.
Jesus said, Go into all the world but what if putting down roots is more important than we think?
Looking back, my darkest seasons of life have all had one thing in common: I didn’t feel seen.
What does it mean to be a friend of sinners?
Seven reasons we should all be part of a congregation of Christian believers
Have you bought into society's message to be the best you can be?
Making disciples — whatever their marital status — happens when we walk in the footsteps of Jesus.
Four ways to be content in all things
Is the United States a Christian nation or a nation in need of Christ?
Reading the Bible as a whole and in community opened my eyes to the importance of God's big story.
Add a new tradition to your Christmas routine.
When facing a major life decision, ask these three basic questions to know how to proceed.
Going to church on Sunday mornings seemed pointless, until I discovered the family of God at work.
Wisdom begins with a proper understanding of who God is and who we are not.
A review of Jen Wilkin's 'Women of the Word'
When everything falls apart, it's not the end.
What better way to represent our Lord and serve others than with the gift of empathy?
When we embrace wholeness through dependency on Christ, we glorify Him.
The Gospel is not only the gateway into the Christian life, but the pathway of the Christian life.
What will you do when your life pivots in ways you didn't anticipate?
Conflict among believers may be inevitable, but fighting dirty is not.
Does practicing spiritual disciplines really matter?
We don't practice spiritual disciplines to get God to love us, but to hear Him say it.
How to follow all the rules but miss what matters most
Four possible reasons why we didn't hear what we wanted to hear from our childhood pastors
How we make sinful mountains out of amoral molehills
Jesus didn't quite get engaged on Christmas, but He did begin the engagement process.
When I was a little girl, I asked God to write my love story. Instead, He has written me into something much greater.
Marketers want you to consume. Christ asks you to produce.
Why spiritual maturity requires even single men to develop the heart of a father
Six ideas on how you can stand behind and alongside of your church's pastor and leaders
If you don't know what your gifts are, maybe the best question to ask yourself is, 'How can I love those around me?'
Your experience with your small group has a lot to do with you.
When we find mess in the church, our ideals are shattered and our hearts broken. Where's the hope?
Maybe you're looking in the wrong place, or maybe it's not what you expected.
Listen and learn what the Bible has to say about true kingdom greatness.
Make the most of this unique season as a young man seeking to live for Jesus. Get off the couch and in the game.
It's possible to call yourself a Christian and not be one.
How to become more effective in fulfilling the "Great Commission" in the important and strategic workplace environment
Making disciples requires not only sharing my faith, but also sharing my life. With all its failures and successes, all its disobedience and obedience.
Is it possible that what we're really after is not God's will at all, but only His good gifts?
There are moments when I feel like two different people.
I want to walk in God-given joy, but how? As I searched Scripture for the answer, I discovered that joy isn't always found in expected places.
Help when reality seems a whole lot smaller than your dreams
Stop tearing down the bride of Christ, and start to appreciate and proclaim her beauty.
If it wasn't for J.C. Ryle's straightforward advice in 'Thoughts for Young Men,' I might have made some big mistakes.
Every political stance we take should be grounded in love for our great God and in love for our neighbors.
Mentoring in your 20s means you've got energy. Wiggle room in your schedule. Fresh ideas. And passion to fuel world change, one life at a time.
Here are five suggestions for singles to leverage their unique life season for the church in a way that married people often can't.
Sometimes Christians are ill-equipped for debates about our faith. See how the Apostle Paul was able to challenge people's beliefs without running them away.
Just because you're out of school doesn't mean you're done learning and discovering. Follow these six reading rules to help make books teach you well.
Have you ever felt like all the good stuff goes to the undeserving? You're not alone.
In our culture it's praiseworthy to obsess over food, but I believe this is at odds with the way God designed us to relate to food. Here's why.
Missions is much like everyday life — just more uncomfortable and farther away from many people I love. Here's what I've learned after five months on the field.
Most Christian students are called to serve God in fields other than professional ministry. Not enough of them realize that.
Though often cheesy, some church signs include profound truths. This one included profound truth.
Beauty is good and comes from the Lord. But apart from God, it turns ugly. Get a balanced perspective of what is beautiful and let His beauty shine through you.
Have trouble putting others before yourself? Think you have your theology all figured out? Ever try to make yourself look good in front of others? If you answered "yes" to any of those questions, then this article is for you.
When it comes to molding me, the Lord has made the most of all seven of my siblings.
What hope is there for those with special needs?
God is looking for a multitude of faithful, risk-taking plodders.
When we call sin what it really is, we can embrace truth, and life can spring again.
Think you don’t understand why people commit heinous sins? Think again.
The early evangelical movement in America and around the world was significantly impacted by a 20-something David Brainerd.
Do you want to do something big for Jesus?
How to be a close friend
This is not a generation in which weak Christians will do well.
Tips on how churches can win their young men back – and the role single women can play in that revival
The story of civilization is the story of how men's hearts were turned toward home.
Epiphany provides grown-ups a child-like opportunity to scribble on doors with chalk.
And start understanding it.
Pause. And calmly think of this.
What exactly are we celebrating?
Everything we experience is processed through our hearts, the good and the bad.
What's the one thing you like most about the people you most like?
God is not a lovesick celestial being, hoping for some nice person to ask Him into their heart so He can make them happy — as though He has a man-shaped hole in His heart that only we can fill.
Put your trust in the Word that became flesh and is trustworthy and true.
Things to consider when 'creating awareness' around the causes we care about
It's only when we choose to bring our secrets out into the light that healing can begin.
Using confession to reach wholeness of heart and wholeness of relationship
You can serve God even when you don't work for Him.
Life as a graduate student provides awesome opportunities to practice living for the kingdom — now.
There's a place so lonely, so frightening, it's closer to hope than you can imagine.
The book of Ecclesiastes is an honest response to the painful reality that life sometimes feels out of control, cruelly random and meaningless.
Christian unity isn’t something we have to achieve. It already is.
When so many of the writers of the Christian classics tell us to "be careful" with gluttony, we would be wise to pay heed.
Parental authority. Civil authority. A husband's authority. Pastoral authority. What is authority, anyway?
Sometimes it takes a friend's difficult words to help us recognize and deal with hidden sins in our lives.
With all the distractions knocking at our door, we need to discipline ourselves to center our perspective on the Triune God.
Plunge into the wider world God created and said was good
A free computer hints at a too-often-overlooked grace greater than we can imagine.
Adding the literary equivalent of a musical hit collection to your devotional reading
A short fiction story about grace and forgiveness
It’s easy to believe that life has more to do with good or bad luck than having a connection to what you do or don't do.
We're so much more than our faces and bodies. But is what's beneath our skin any better looking?
Showcasing selfless beauty in everyday life
Understanding the enemy in your life story
Will you keep trusting God even when He seems distant?
Feeling pretty pleased with yourself? Meet someone who'll change that — a voice from beyond the grave.
Hospitality: giving the gift of yourself.
A little advice on finding God’s will.
Do I really believe that God’s will is “good, pleasing and perfect?”
Evangelism isn't about filling a quota. It's about taking a risk and loving those who need the grace of God as much as you do.
A review of Don't Call It a Comeback, Kevin DeYoung, editor
We're in a world where we don’t belong.
Serious personal Bible study is both less intimidating than it sounds and more challenging than you might expect.
How do we believers dwell in the city?
"Not falling" is not the goal of a spiritual warrior's vocation. It's only the means.
Trusting God no matter your circumstances
In the dust and mud and pain of Cambodia, those fighting trafficking are recapturing the sanctity of life.
You are so precious to Someone that He willingly laid down His life for you.
What if Jesus has a different goal for my life than I do?
Coming to grips with being "fearfully and wonderfully made."
Bringing Christmas to others is about extending God's presence to them ... through me.
A full cup reminds us of God's goodness. And how we have a difficult time accepting His gifts.
How should Christians respond when a friend leaves the faith?
A particular group of shepherds was stunned by a divine encounter some two millennia ago. One motorist was perhaps only slightly less startled when Immanuel showed up as he was traveling I-40.
Everywhere you look, people are inching towards organic eating and living. Faith should be the same way.
Is it possible to "keep your heart with all vigilance" when it comes to our entertainment choices?
Boundless author's book is about understanding and rescuing those who once were found but now are lost.
I must always be unsatisfied with my progress in holiness, but satisfied with God's sufficient grace.
Organizations and individuals are making strides in illuminating the importance of adoption.
My new goal online isn't just to build a platform for myself as a writer, but to build a platform for Jesus.
While college is a time for questioning, it's not a time for doubt — at least not the way we generally think about it.
In a Christian college, it's easy to let the environment do the spiritual heavy lifting. It did for me.
Oppressive gray meets divine torrent.
A simple switch in vocabulary can trigger a profound difference in attitude.
In this first article of a three-part series, the editor of "The Journal of Biblical Counseling" introduces a Scriptural approach to therapy and counseling.
Whether you're at the top or bottom of the business ladder, Scripture lays out specific and practical principles on how to make the most of the workplace.
How does someone with an essentially secular upbringing and secular education become a staunch supporter of biblical creation?
Good insurance and financial planning offer a degree of security. But true security is found elsewhere.
Difficult times simply reveal what's taken root in our heart. When pressed, we either ooze the fruit of the Spirit or the fruit of sin.
So, what can be done about these "girlie" churches?
If you want to succeed, you've got to accept criticism.
The emerging generation gives less to God's work than any previous generation. Are we only hurting ourselves?
What comes out of our mouths reveals what's in our hearts.
We walk among the living dead.
When the miracle doesn't come in time, there's something profoundly comforting about knowing we serve a God who weeps.
While the goal of the American dream is to make much of us, the goal of the gospel is to make much of God.
Has the church become too effeminate? By becoming so "cute," has it become irrelevant to men?
Every day is significant. Every day is sacred.
Foul-mouthed language, all around us — we either use it ourselves or just try to ignore it. Bad move either way.
God created natural laws for a reason and doesn't violate them lightly. But, sometimes, He does violate them.
Praying for the impossible is not a test of my imagination; it's a test of my faith.
On the days when I feel unsettled and isolated and like I don't fit, I reflect on the truth and hope of heaven.
Sometimes the wild things rear up, threatening to make me lose my grip on reason and drive into a wild rumpus all my own.
Destiny is for me a real thing. The forces directing it have been active for a long, long time.
How can I trust a God who lets terrible things happen to people who love Him?
The Lord calls you to join Him walking on the water. The next step is yours.
Why do we need patience in an instant world where most things we consider desirable are available without waiting?
Communicating your faith is not a science. The very nature of telling the message of Jesus Christ to people requires sensitivity, discernment, and variation in style.
We need more than confession. We need redemption.
In the midst of the horror of Nazi persecution, Etty Hillesum found beauty and hope and reason to be grateful. And showed that despite its tragedy and loneliness, life is beautiful.
I woke up wishing that there were something in my heart that could provide emotional refuge in the same way the Park provides a physical refuge.
It's possible my emotional low was a mix of post-traumatic stress and reverse culture shock, if we're going to put a name on it.
Feel like there's never enough time or money? Some experts say we're whiners. Some say we're robots. But Paul says something different.
I've tried to pay closer attention to how God may be using circumstances and people in my life to get me through tough times.
I didn't know what I "had." All I knew was that I was in one big emotional funk.
Jesus' death was horrible enough. Now the body was missing.
Mary Magdalene did. And as we understand our role in the crucifixion of Christ, we will too.
The cross is not a magic wand.
The winding journey proved to be a sweet remedy for all of the pain stacked like cemented bricks inside my heart.
Now, I realize I don't know you at all. But I feel like I need to write this letter because I have to confess.
My approach to God ultimately shapes my approach to other people and to this temporal world.
The week following my 30th birthday, I hit an all-time low.
To live in fullness of joy, we live as those who are not afraid to die.
Walking through the cemetery, a thought hit me that I don't think I'd ever really contemplated before: "One day, I'll be here, too."
I was only months away from graduating from Bible college, but I had a dirty little secret: I wasn't sure God existed anymore.
Sitting in the coffee shop, I watch people flash their mirror faces as they pass by the windows. And that got me thinking about theology.
It's amazing what can happen when you don't rush to speak.
Seven values help me sort out the temporal from the eternal, and relate to both with my heart in the right place.
When somebody shames you, it's probably a good time to take a step back.
Stressed? Maybe you need a bit of leisure. Not sure what that looks like? Read on ...
It's easy to squeeze toothpaste out of the tube; near impossible to get it back in. Words are like that.
If you want God to answer your prayers, you need to pray the right way?
Like many other singles, I frequently pray for a spouse. As I pray for this spouse, I remember Thing.
Six ways to start the year off right.
Each year, one "me" embarks on this adventure of life anew. By the end of 365 days, she's become someone different.
Elevating the dignity of women is not a new idea. But because men have too often been identified as the problem, the gender war has never been fully resolved.
Discover the secret meaning of "cylinder."
Redemptive cultural engagement? It happens through either redirecting or redefining cultural patterns affected by the Fall.
For God so loved the world that ...
The other father of Jesus teaches us a great deal about Christian mission in the 21st century.
When God seems most absent, we can be assured that He is right here.
Living with acne has made clear to me the source of real beauty.
A lifetime in my skin has taught me about the intersection of beliefs, moods, and personal circumstances in my own life ... and how I am prone to the sin of despair.
Once we are real, we are called to really relate. And that's what it means to be righteous.
If the Beatitudes list the qualities Jesus finds most important, then I ought to ponder and pray about them.
Do you consider the world to be a mother or a prostitute?
In the body of Christ, young adults need to feel more like hands than tonsils.
Dwelling on negative thoughts. Surely that's not the best use of my time.
I know I'm a Christian, but am I Christian enough?
I rightly hate the sin. I wrongly continue to dwell on the fact that I've sinned.
Ignorance is pathetic, but we can't excuse him on the grounds that he didn't know. He chooses his own doom.
The Son of God did not become man, die, and rise again so that we could walk a tightrope over hell.
It's through relationship that we come to know the true power of the Gospel.
Another predictably uneventful day at the nursing home. Until Everett receives an unexpected visitor.
Nobody expects to get old. Or useless.
If you don't want to lose your faith in college, you need a plan.
Someday, death will die. Then Love Himself will reign supreme.
Jesus' truth is two-sided: love, acceptance, understanding, and compassion on one side, and calling people to faithful obedience on the other.
It's exhausting. And harms relationships and wastes valuable time and energy that could be devoted to more worthy pursuits.
If I could sum up what Sabbath means to me, it would take just three words: He says stop.
To move there? How to pay for it? What about insurance? Should I date her? What's my ministry? Ah, we need a little help here.
To know if Christians possess knowledge about reality, we need to understand exactly what knowledge is.
"WWJD?" only invites speculation. It's not what Jesus would do that transforms us. It's what He did do, for us, to us, in us.
My classroom was the streets on the rougher side of town.
If we orient our hearts toward Christ, we will easily release our grasp on material attachments so that others might experience God's incomparable love.
I marvel at the eternal in Amy Carmichael's books, in her poems and letters, and her phrases are still ringing down the years of my life.
Our feeble attempts to withstand their daily assault is humiliating. Thank God.
Don't give up when life hurts. Surrender instead.
Health in this world is not "truly life." It is merely postponed death.
In that moment I wasn't missing God; I was missing the other pieces.
The uncertainty God had allowed into my life simply revealed the ignorance I live with every single day.
The only way to enjoy even a weed is to feel unworthy even of a weed.
You may find it delicious.
It began as a regular Wednesday night Bible study. Then someone new knocked on the door.
Gotta fear somebody. Would that be man or God?
For thousands of years, He was known as The Name. But, in a moment, all that had forever changed.
Having judged others based on their weight, I was now on the receiving end of the same wrong assumptions.
God calls us to be diligent, not divine.
It's one of the great mysteries of the Christian life: sleep.
Visiting a Hindu temple, and then a simple Christian church, brings a fresh appreciation for one particular sacrifice.
Committing to attend a pre-dawn prayer service can draw the worst, and the best, from you.
If only we had their bodies, hair, makeup, clothes ...
Don't leave charity to the government.
We're mesmerized by what takes place onstage. But perhaps the greatest wonders occur before the curtain even opens.
If you're planning to get a job on a summer camp staff this summer, you're not joining a staff; you're joining a legacy.
It can be difficult to bring a faith that's developed while you're at college back home for the summer vacation.
Have you ever felt like you want to talk to God, but you don't know what to say, or if your prayers get through? It's not an unknowable mystery.
It's a fascinating place to explore. So why does it seem that I spend so little time abiding there?
Too often I forget that life is a vapor in the wind — that I am walking, not on solid ground, but on water.
Is there a line I shouldn't cross to try to be beautiful? Or is it about more than a line?
I said I trusted God. But I wasn't willing to give Him my future.
It's fine to want to change the world by doing something powerful for God. So long as we don't miss out on the small things He has for us along the way.
More women than men tend to be involved in volunteering, church activities and school programs. So what?
The pursuit of coherent truth drove one man from theism to deism to agnosticism and to atheism. And then to God.
Our desire for justice and restoration is natural, and their fulfillment is on its way.
God has endless ways of winning our hearts, and I'm fascinated by them all.
It's about more than just a day; it's about a season.
Joy is a lot harder than happy. But it's also a lot more worth having.
If you're like me and feel sometimes that good things have passed you by, class is now in session.
Guilt is a gift, a form of God's grace to expose me to my true self and force me to take seriously my sin.
Something is beckoning for my attention. And it's not online.
Whether you enjoy it or not is not the point.
I couldn't get those words out of my mind: "He actually thinks God loves him!"
Developing your personal spiritual disciplines is good, of course. But there's more to our faith than that.
It's such hard work dealing with pride, especially when you have so much to be proud of.
Did God-incarnate ever spend time laughing with His friends?
Conflict between life and belief has caused many to reject the Christian faith. But dissonance is part of the music.
When she answered Satan, Eve didn't stand on God's command. She stood on her own.
Yes, you can relate to their struggles.
You don't have to be an "angry person" to have a problem with anger.
Our ability to redeem the sexual generation will lie in our willingness to live and love with the same kind of daring Jesus did.
I love that the Lord can use something as seemingly superficial as selling beauty products to teach me more about Himself.
It's easy to allow myself to buy into the lie that what I own is who I am.
Being fit had become an idol. It was time to do something drastic.
I was standing in the Chicago O'Hare Airport early one morning waiting to pick up a friend when I overheard two men chatting about Christians ...
Most of us live by default or by reaction. There's a better way.
I've always felt funny whenever I hear somebody begin a sentence with those words. It sounds so resolute, so certain.
If you're a detective-story fan, you may also have noticed that sometimes the smallest of facts becomes the most important of clues.
Our relationship with it goes deep.
Your choice: Grow increasingly stupid, or study to show yourself approved.
How might I do a better job of loving the unlovely, people covered with the filth of sin?
It was a good article. It had a good lesson. So why was I so irritated?
It's not the government's responsibility to care; that's our job.
Do we reject the outcast? Or identify with them?
Sometimes it takes a dog to show us that the fruit of discipline is liberty.
When crying babies come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.
With the diagnosis came peace, and a resolve to make the most of it.
It's been around as long as Christianity itself. And it's a lie.
The emergent church gets some of it right. But some of it very, very wrong.
Being a "single-issue voter" isn't cool. Of course, Christian compassion isn't about being considered "cool."
Jesus offers us the joy of giving to others with no strings attached.
Those with few material possessions can teach us a lot about the heart of God.
The psalmist shows us how to move from questions to answers.
The heart of ministry — cooperating with God's transformational agenda — lies at the intersection of our lives and God's Word.
We can change when the God of loving truth intersects some actual human need.
Christ's call is to think differently, to live unexpectedly.
Am I living well today? And is the way I'm living actually going to lead to a good, God-honoring future — not just here, but in eternity?
God gives good gifts. But he also gives the best gift, the inexpressible Gift of gifts.
In the therapeutic gospel, my deepest problems are merely limited to what has happened to me.
All of creation has been kissed by the glory of God and gives us a small glimpse into His character. Yes, even sports.
How we deal with insulting behavior says a lot about what we believe.
Exciting? Perhaps. Liberating? Seems like it. Dangerous? Without a doubt.
The whole world is knotted up and dangling loose. But you are still your biggest problem.
The problem with much of contemporary counseling is that it denies the reality of evil, and consequently the relevance of the Savior.
How can we possibly be holy enough to see the living God?
The world is dark, and we are needed.
If it doesn't really matter what they think of you, the possibilities are endless.
When things get rough and disorienting, the predictability of the past starts looking pretty good.
Sometimes doing what you can is more important than what you can do.
Nathan has come to chat with Professor Theophilus about numerous errors he's found in the Bible. Feel free to listen in on their conversation.
Ever wonder if there are mistakes in the Bible? Join in on their conversation.
Nathan and the professor finish up their conversation by discussing the best way to go about understanding things in the Bible that may seem inconsistent.
Among those who hurt others, and who themselves hurt, there are few easy answers. That, of course, is no reason to remain aloof from their pain.
If the Lord can be glorified through a humble stick of wood, surely He can be glorified through a humble you.
In this vortex of stimuli, truth and deception, art may do what few other things can: It may, for a moment, still the scene around us.
Of all the self-destructive behaviors I had, cutting was always the hardest to explain. How do I reconcile having inflicted destruction upon my body even while serving the Lord?
When situations seem unfair or even disastrous, we can only swallow the injustice and bitterness if we focus on the unflinching promise that our times are in His hands.
Exaggerations and over-commitments seem fairly benign. They're not.
Many find The Shack to be an engaging read. It may also be a dangerous one.
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.
You could say that civilization works because it's never me.
Faith is a way of knowing, not a warm fuzzy.
Too many times I let convenience control my perspective and decisions, and even steal my joy and focus. Where does this attitude come from?
Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God.
The journey home is never too long.
What does an optimist know about suffering? Not much.
Looking forward to the next thing? That's not where you'll find joy.
It's tempting to wallow in the regret of past failures and wounds. But the real prize lies right where you are.
I fit right in on the morning bus. But under the shabby veneer, nobody knew I was tortured by an impossible dream.
Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.
You've got to serve somebody.
Sometimes following God requires us to stop before we tell other people our direction.
I was having enough trouble trying to have one "quiet time" each day and now I wanted to have five. Strangely, I've found five easier than one.
We catch a fellow Christian doing something we don't think is right. What might our response be?
We don't have to make headlines to be a success in life.
Even in business, blessed are the merciful ... for they shall obtain mercy.
We have a lot to learn about praying for others from the man who prayed for us.
So stop shaking Him.
It's much easier to take a side in the culture wars than to critically or redemptively engage the issues we fight over. How, then, do we engage culture Christianly?
We are like eggs. And we cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg. We must be hatched or go bad.
I can clearly remember the first time I self-injured.
Could it be that there are in fact no heroes?
Where did the idea of hell come from? What is it? And how should we speak of it?
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
The way to satisfaction in an unsatisfying world is to practice the art of dying well.
When things get frantic, don't just trust in your stuff.
It's been a day of small annoyances, and now at 2 a.m. they float up like Dickensian specters, clanking their chains after them.
Chances are you have a friend in missions. But do you know what they need from you?
The good news is that Jesus really came back to life, and not merely in a figurative or "spiritual" way.
Sometimes I feel like my heavenly Father exists to tell me "no." The truth surprised me.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it. Prone to leave the God I love. Ah, but God ...
Consider the ant....
The meek shall indeed inherit the earth.
If my faith is to survive, my inner hypocrite must die.
There's nothing like a tranquil boatride down the Amazon to bring perspective.
Being pro-life requires that we remind those who are nearing the end that it is good that they exist.
We're called not to mere soul-winning, but to distinctive discipleship.
Living large means making the most of awkward encounters. Like when someone tells you they want to eat your soul.
You can contend for a good cause with a bad attitude. I sure have.
Unexpected inconveniences could actually be opportunities ordained by God.
The act of forgiving is a breaking. And a healing.
The second Beatitude — "Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted" — provides a key business and leadership principle.
To say that I'd do without hell is to suggest that I could do a better job fashioning an eternity than God can.
When injustice is most acute, too often it seems He's nowhere to be found.
She was so thin that friends were telling her she would die. After collapsing in the middle of the street, she began to really believe them.
Enjoy it while you can, for a time is coming when discernment will no longer be necessary.
It's to your advantage to seek the counsel of your pastor or elders.
Being listened to is so close to being loved that most people cannot tell the difference.
And you probably are too.
Are you recreating, or merely entertaining yourself?
The best is yet to come.
God knows, Christmas can be a very difficult time of year.
God wants us to sing.
Scripture promotes the healing benefits of a joyful heart. Why settle for less?
And how they speak to us of the wonder -- or is it the meaninglessness? -- of life.
The people surrounding you aren't the enemy; they're just looking for someone who really sees them.
It's not enough to sing songs about God's love that produce warm feelings in our hearts. We need to remember the reality of Christ crucified.
Thank God by curtailing your craving for too much.
With each passing day, I began feeling more and more the weight of dread and the crushing loss of unfulfilled longings....
The word that follows a transitive verb makes all the difference.
Is your approach to church like that of a giant flesh-eating extraterrestrial plant?
Pastoral authority: Do you have to submit to it?
Part of what gives us the courage to practice an inside-out consistency is the knowledge that Jesus already knows what is on the inside.
Do something about all that emailblogcellphonewebrssyoutubemyspaceblackberrytech noise.
In an age of modern media, our comfort with illusion has worked its way into our souls.
Why we're tempted to use God to get our way (and why it doesn't work).
Being connected to God could lead to serving in places you never imagined.
Ever critique a sermon?
It's OK to cry.
It's about a lot more than a feeling.
Drown out cries of "teotwawki!" with Christ's "peace!"
Sin has dulled your senses. Your skin feels thick, like the hide of a dragon. How can you possibly scrape all that off and become truly human again?
Every circumstance is an opportunity for fear ... or something else.
As a Christian, the good news is that you are no longer a slave to sin.
Media consultant Gordon Pennington explores the effects of media on a post-modern culture.
Do you have a physical faith? Acting out may be worth the effort.
In this continuing exploration of discernment, we take a look at how to think biblically, involve others, and decide to worship.
They may seem like gray areas. But to God, they're black and white.
Even art devoid of intentional Christian imagery can have spiritually transformative effects.
Your relationship with the Lord may be stagnant because you merely love Him.
Christian authors Joshua Harris and Carolyn McCulley speak of the centrality of being involved with a church.
It's serious and deadly. Deal with it.
How do we Christians respond to charges of being heartless, anti-science, even enemies of progress?
When it comes to church commitment, a piece of paper can make all the difference.
Why do I suffer? To find some answers, we look back to the 14th century.
Let love swallow your fears and go for it.
The distractions of technology can dull our lives, hamper our productivity, rob us of quiet thought and keep us from demonstrating Christ's love.
He's Emmanuel. God with us. And what does that mean? It means that the glory is with us again.
For years we have been encouraged to set boundaries. But what happens when God demands the opposite?
Trust in God isn't truly trust until we find ourselves face-to-face with the kind of hardships and betrayals that make us vulnerable and tempt us to fear.
Looking to make the most of the upcoming holiday? Consider being "careful for nothing."
It's convenient, but is doing church online really a valid replacement for the real thing?
It is within your power to either bless this world with splashes of God's glory, or spray it with showers of sin.
Sometimes pain and loss give way to something of inestimable worth.
Some sins just keep coming back.
Professor Theophilus finishes up his conversation with Peter about a sin that just won't go away.
He converted to Islam in college. But after years of practicing his faith, Thabiti sensed a hollowness growing in his heart.
At a time when electronic communication leaves us increasingly cynical and skeptical, blogs can free us to communicate in a surprisingly personal way.
Graceless conversation is commonplace in the blogosphere. Believers need to change that.
Scripture says, "Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." Can that include blogging?
"Lifestyle Evangelism" is not sufficient. But neither is pushing to "close the deal."
It's not always best to answer the questions people ask. Sometimes it's better to answer the questions they mean.
Reports of the death of Christianity have been greatly exaggerated.
Every movie that hits the silver screen has a worldview driving it. Realizing this fact is a first step toward practicing media discernment.
Sometimes it's OK to simply make the best decision you can and trust God to let you know if you've gone astray.
If you give yourself permission to vent, you may be missing a moment to shine.
A full cup reminds us of God's goodness. And how we have a difficult time accepting His gifts.
It's impossible to pursue popularity as such without growing in worldliness. Is this a price you're willing to pay?
Passion for the church? It may be a sign of your passion for God.
A student finds herself in Prof. Theophilus's office, confessing her inability to hear from God.
The road to mental wholeness may be arduous, but there is hope. Thankfully.
If you're not hearing from the Lord, perhaps it's because you're listening wrong.
The Chicago Marathon leaves one non-runner with more than aching legs; she's left with lessons learned that transcend any race.
The problem with evolutionists isn't just that they can't see God at work. It's that they refuse to see Him at work.
What would it be like if people were really honest in their diaries — if they wrote in them the things that in real life they don't even admit to themselves?
Our moods, and the biology behind them, don't have to have the final word.
You've known them — people who only step through the doors of a church on a holiday. Ever wonder what to say to them? Here's one writer's idea.
Some shepherds were stunned by a divine encounter two millennia ago. A motorist was only slightly less startled when Jesus showed up as he was traveling I-40.
A student confesses to struggle with wanting more, and the professor's response? In the spirit of Advent, perhaps he should find himself wanting even more.
Some people consider themselves agnostics. Professor Theophilus makes it a simple matter to determine whether or not you're in fact an atheist.
The shock of an unexpected surprise can be invigorating. While invigorating, an encounter with Christ should be no surprise.
Romans 8:28 says that all things work together for good to those who love God. But does that include even my purple Wiccan tattoo?
The closest I ever got to the Beatles was just the beginning of getting close to Jesus.
Sometimes our sins are easily forgiven and forgotten. Other times, the damage is too deep to quickly be undone. It's about the slow repair, says Theophilus.
Getting into someone’s life can be messy, but mentoring provides a front row seat to God’s redeeming power.
In her efforts to find a quiet, peaceful place, Suzanne found something much deeper.
When Martin Luther was busiest, he prayed the longest. I think he was onto something.
You hear it all the time: the old beliefs aren't believable any more. But what if you've never even learned what the old beliefs are?
One adult convert's story of trying to live a whole new way.
Struggling with the meaning of life? Maybe your friendly sales clerk can help.
It's about a lot more than getting out in front of a group of people and shouting "follow me!"
Lots of people think their brand of living is the best. But the road to good living is a high call few achieve.
A look at the incarnation through the eyes of Theophilus' many varied students.
Why we need to understand it before we can find it.
It's easily proved false, still cultural relativism goes virtually unchallenged, to our harm.
Makeover's are all the rage. But trying to be someone you're not is just plain unlivable.
You can survive college with your faith in tact. Here's a book that can guide you from freshman orientation all the way to graduation.
How a change in perspective helped me finally lose weight.
They’re pretty basic, yet somehow we often manage to lose sight of them. So here are some reminders.
The current hot philosophy is a breeding ground for self-indulgence, suspicion and anger.
“Postmodernism” is a hot word in many circles, but what does it mean, and why does it matter so much? For answers, start here.
J.P. unpacks the biblical understanding of truth.
Our thoughts can be scary, especially if we find they’re always about the wrong things.
Prof Theo talks about calling, zeal and service.
The second part of Shad’s tongue-in-cheek jab at lovers of comfort.
Convinced there are serious problems with evolutionary theory, but wondering why so many intellectuals respond as if there aren’t? J.P. provides a few insights.
Marshall learns what good parking and free lattes have to do with the perfect church.
J. P. answers the question we should ask before we criticize scientific naturalism.
A tongue-n-cheek jab at lovers of comfort.
How to get more than information out of the Bible. The final part of Dr. Russell’s four-part series on interpreting Scripture.
Too busy? Keeping perspective can give you all the time in the world.
A three-way worldview struggle rages in our culture between scientific naturalism, postmodernism and ethical monotheism (especially Christianity).
Markers that show us God is at work in our lives.
Why you should never read just one verse of the Bible. Part 3 of Dr. Russell’s 4-part series on interpreting Scripture.
Does the Bible contain meaning of its own? If so, how can we find it? Part 2 of a 4-part series on interpreting Scripture.
Suffering, redemption and another perspective on sin.
A little clarification on “Human Clay”: Jessica’s response to Holly Dawn.
Getting on and staying on God's road is one of the greatest challenges we face as followers of Jesus Christ.
Will the real relativists please stand up?
Christianity works, no doubt, but don’t forget that it’s also true.
Fast food, Sunday services and other consumer products.
Explaining the Gospel to seminary students and 5 year olds
Do we talk about brokenness and grace so much that we implicitly condone sin?
Everyone’s got some kind of faith. They just don’t always admit it.
Could you go a whole day without talking? This and three other speaking challenges could change your life.
Ever know anyone who can’t hear criticism without taking it personally? Meet Julie.
Reciprocated humility and grace: Holly Dawn responds to Jessica.
A dismal-looking summer job turns into a blessing.
Feel distant from God? Dana’s discovery: You feel closer when you focus less on how you feel and just spend time with Him.
Bad dreams? Freud thinks he knows what they mean. But Christianity has a bigger picture.
How Jenny learned to quit hating the mirror.
How do you convey your faith to people who don’t share it? Depends on the circumstances.
Paganism’s not just on Buffy and Charmed; it’s spreading on campus. Understanding its appeal is the key to confronting it.
Sarah's professors tell her there's no such thing as absolute truth. Theophilus says even they don't really believe that.
There are some people we shouldn't hang out with not because we're too good for them, but because we're not good enough.
What does Jesus mean when He warns us not to “judge”? Not what most people today think He means.
Three secrets from the Buzz Underwood files.
Sometimes theology can be kid stuff.
Some Christians let their church attendance fall off in college. They’ve got lots of excuses — but not many good ones.
Christians don't have "blind faith." They know how to think; they also know Who to trust.
Real Christians don't ask tough questions, some say. Wrong. That's how we grow, in both heart and mind.
Jesus was for real. The challenge, for playright Dorothy Sayers, was to show that to her audience.
It's hard to stand alone under the glare of a hostile professor. But you'd be surprised the influence you may have.
Is life as a Christian really better than the alternative?
Ever get the feeling your faith is no longer real? You know, that sneaking suspicion you can't quite explain? Theophilus may be able to help diagnose your problem.
The movie got rave reviews. But the best experience, says this reviewer, is reserved for those who have read the book.
The church need not be brashly evangelistic right after a terrorist attack, but if we want to comfort the bereaved, we have to comfort in Jesus.
I saw the towers crumbling and people running. And in the midst of the horror, I saw God.
Cynicism is easy, fun and hey, I was born this way. So why was I starting to feel so rotten?
The tunes we listen to affect us more deeply than we know.
Can we even begin to understand the mystery of conversing with the Almighty?
Suddenly my private faith had a public face.
Unread homework, overdue bills, rocky relationships and a thousand other things. What do you do when condemnation strikes?
Why do atheists seem so confident in their disbelief? It can be downright unnerving. Don't they ever have any faith crises?
Waking to the sound of 12 boisterous children, suddenly my summer abroad wasn't the romantic picture I had painted.
After a five-day forum on the Christian voice in intellectual life, Theophilus critiques biblicists for not taking the Bible seriously enough.
In this age of striving for the next big thing, Long wonders if we can every be truly satisfied.
Extreme grace can seem such a faraway concept. Until it happens to you.
Once Digger and Butterfingers started coming to church barefoot, Vacation Bible School was never the same.
When a loved one dies suddenly, unjustly, it's tempting to blame God. But scorning the great comforter provides less relief than imagined.
The name of the game on many college campuses is friendship evangelism. The problem is that in most cases we settle for too much friendship and too little evangelism.
Why not plan ahead for a summer of adventure that also has a noble purpose?
Prisca escaped a campus cult, only to be confronted with Christianity. Now Professor Theophilus is trying to explain the difference between the two.
With headlines so full of senseless tragedy, how can you reconcile the goodness of God with the pain and suffering of this world?
Brought before his doubting peers, Theophilus shows them why truth can be known and why everyone, at their core, has faith in something.
Goodness is a state of mind says conventional wisdom. But can we really be good if left to ourselves? In other words, can we be good without God?
An eagerness for God is the foundation for success in college.
It may be more biblical than you realize.
We run the risk of telling people that Christmas is about Jesus' birth but miss the chance to tell them why His birth matters.
Ancient punctuation has something to teach us about slowing down and noticing God at work.
I was gauging my success by the number of tasks I could accomplish. But God was inviting me to something better.
Sign up for our e-newsletter and receive a free chapter from the hit book, The Dating Manifesto, by Lisa Anderson.
Helping young adults mature in Christ and prepare for marriage and family. Learn more
© Focus on the Family 1998-2015