Category Archives: Dealing with sin

Left Out

Left Out: The Benefits of Exclusion

Exclusion is a part of life. It is unavoidable. Not only that, it is good. Isn’t it good that the whole school doesn’t get to have a say in your child’s education? That the whole church isn’t governed by the whim of the congregation each week but by a group of trusted elders? That only…

God's Not Fair

God is Unfair.

God is unfair. Matthew 20 forces this hard reality down our throats. Though an equitable God who treats everyone with the same grace and favor would be easier to swallow, that’s not our God. Jesus makes this clear as He tells this parable: For the kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house who went…

Do you despise him?

Do You Despise Him?

When Jacob had cooked stew, Esau came in from the field and he was famished; and Esau said to Jacob, “Please let me have a swallow of that red stuff there, for I am famished.” Therefore his name was called Edom. But Jacob said, “First sell me your birthright.” Esau said “Behold, I am about…

what to do with self-pity

What To Do With Self-Pity

Self-pity is simply the grief that I have nothing to brag about in myself. Ever have those days when you feel like a failure at everything? The closer I walk with God, the more my sin, my deep-rooted self-love, comes into high-definition focus. And honestly, I’d really love to be the most put together person in…

the forceful compassion of god

The Forceful Compassion of God

Today, the Spirit of God captivated my attention with a phrase in a very familiar passage of Scripture. I have read about the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah many times in chapter 19 of Genesis and usually the same main points keep my attention: the wickedness of the men of Sodom who demand Lot’s guests be…

proactive repentance

An Exercise in Repentance

Repentance is the act of agreeing with God about our sin, turning from it and rejoicing in what God has done for us in Jesus. Most of our repentance is reactive. We repent primarily for the sins that are staring us in the face or the ones that others point out. And honestly, even then,…

Why am I still so discontent

Why Am I Still So Discontent?

I recently got this message from someone: “I’m trying really hard right now to embrace singleness as a gift, as you mentioned in your post “Theology of Singleness.” I think it would help ease my mind to know more about the things I will experience in my relationship with God that I would not experience…

a jesus heart for children

A Jesus-Heart for Children, Part 2

In the last post, we looked at how Jesus responded to children and how we can do the same. Whether or not we have children of our own, we need to cultivate a Biblical response to children. But what would Jesus have to say to moms? Being a mother entails a whole other level of interaction…

a wife after God's own heart

A Wife After God’s Own Heart, Part 2

As man’s power over woman is restrained by love, woman’s power over man is restrained by submission. Any woman knows that she has ways of getting her own way. These must be restrained. The kind of restraint God asks of her is submission. -Elisabeth Elliot As wives, we have influence over our husbands but too often we…

marriage gone wrong

Marriage Gone Wrong: when codependency highjacks a beautiful union

After the series I recently wrote dealing with codependency in friendship, a few people presented a very natural follow up question: If codependency isn’t ok in friendships, then should it be ok in marriage? NO. Remember, I’m defining codependency as tying your emotional sense of well-being to another person. To say it another way, it is giving more weight and…

friendship gone wrong

Friendships Gone Wrong, Part 6

ROMANTICIZING FRIENDSHIP “When we are completely immersed in a society of people who consider a particular idolatrous attachment normal, it becomes almost impossible to discern it for what it is.” –Tim Keller The culture around us is like a current, gently pushing us along according to its philosophies.  Unless we are regularly clinging to the…

friendship gone wrong

Friendship Gone Wrong, Part 5

If you’re just jumping into this conversation, I hope you will go back and read the first 4 parts of this series for some context. I’ve been talking about the problem of codependent friendships which are rooted in idolatry and casting a vision for the purpose of Biblical friendship. STEPS TOWARD FREEDOM If it is evident…

friendship gone wrong

Friendship Gone Wrong, Part 4

Now that we’ve seen what an unhealthy friendship looks like, let’s talk about healthy friendships. To do that, we must start with the purpose of friendship, biblically. FRIENDSHIP FOR JESUS “O, who but the Christian feels such pleasures as are connected with friendship for our dear Lord Jesus Christ?” Samuel Pearce Friendship FOR Jesus. What a sweet…

friendship gone wrong

Friendship Gone Wrong, Part 3

In the last post, we looked into what the Bible has to say about idolatry. Idolatry is the root of every codependent relationship; it is what’s happening under the surface. Let’s now look at what goes on above the surface. EMOTIONAL DEPENDENCY This sin of idolizing a friend is often called “emotional dependency” or “codependency” in the counseling…

friendship gone wrong

Friendship Gone Wrong, Part 2

THE FIRST LIE Since the serpent first opened his mouth in the garden, he’s been trying to convince us that God is not enough for us: “You’re missing out. God’s holding out on you.” (Gen 3:1-6) And since then, the temptation to look to God’s creation instead of God Himself for satisfaction is a common, daily struggle,…

friendship gone wrong

Friendship Gone Wrong, Part 1

Sarah and Kelsey are best friends. A year ago, Kelsey walked into Sarah’s dorm room to borrow a textbook from her roommate and noticed Sarah watching her favorite movie. Forty minutes later, after discussing plots lines and rehearsing favorite scenes from the movie, they became fast friends. Slowly, over time, they did everything together—Bible study,…

entitlement

Entitlement: The Tip of the Iceberg

Imagine a deadly sickness has plagued our country. There are no outward symptoms, and the longer you were infected, the more convinced you were of your health. Yet one simple test could reveal whether or not you were sick. Would you be tested? The truth is, there is a deadly sickness plaguing our country. It…

An unseen enemy

An Unseen Enemy

The danger of an iceberg is not its great strength, but that its strength is hidden. Had the ice monstrosity that sunk the Titanic been above the water, it no doubt would have been seen and easily avoided. Pride—a desire to exalt oneself—is like an iceberg. It exists in the unseen realm of the heart…

journaling

Journaling: More Than a Diary

“Today we went to Hobby Lobby. My mom got 2 new lamps. It took her 30 MINUTES to choose which ones she wanted! I got a little birdcage for my dollhouse. We went to Marco’s for dinner then to Kroger. They now have a checking counter you can do yourself!” ~Me, 12 years old My…

the inner circle

The Inner Circle

I vividly remember standing outside of a literal circle of people. Though these girls were just acquaintances, I had hoped to join their conversation.  As 4,000 students shuffled through the halls of my high school, I awkwardly waited for someone to notice me.  No one noticed.  And to avoid looking weird, I headed off to class. I hated feeling…