For Those Who Had a Tough Year.


For those who have had a tough year:
Only look back to learn and to laugh.
A new year is approaching, which is no guarantee of better times, but an opportunity for a better you.
Trust Him, that though nothing might change around you, you can affect change through Him.
He’s in the business of turning deserts into pastures.
That includes you, too.
— J.S.

Kick Off 2014

Hey dear friends:

To kick off your spiritual journey for 2014, these are for your consideration.

– Bible Reading Plans

– I Want To Read My Bible — But How?

– Porn Addiction: An Introduction

– A Mega-Post on Ragged Jagged Bipolar Faith

– Making Prayer Harder Than It Really Is

– Jesus Says Take A Break

– Christian Book Recommendations For The Rookies And Veterans

– Top Ten Posts of 2013

– Top Ten Podcasts of 2013

— J

That New Year Feeling: Go With It

Sometimes the feeling of a new year can trick us into doing “better” when it’s only just a number on a calendar.

But you know: Go with that. New starts are a great thing. If you follow your resolution for a month, you did it for a whole month. High-five yourself. Just don’t stop. Keep setting goals and go for them. Keep a heart of January all the way through summer and fall. And don’t look back unless it’s to laugh and learn.

— J

New Year’s Resolution: Bible Reading Plans

Ready to finish the Bible or read it again this year?

Here’s a great blog post for Bible reading plans by Justin Taylor of the Gospel Coalition.
*Update: Here’s his new article for 2013.

I also have the One Year Plan and the B90X 90 Day Plan on file.
Click here for the One Year Plan.
I did the 90 Day Plan in 104 days.
Click here for the 90 Day Plan.

I’m currently reading the One Year Bible NLT (New Living Translation) at a rate of about two entries per day. It’ll be my third time through the Bible, and then I plan to read The Books of the Bible by Biblica, which has no chapter or verse numbers.

It’s never too late to start!

Continue reading “New Year’s Resolution: Bible Reading Plans”

Everyone Else’s Vision For You

We do not fit each other’s shoes, even if they are the same size. We don’t think alike, so our expectations from each other will often miss or explode. You’re scared of spiders, I’m scared of heights, and we both think the other’s fear is a little silly. We cry at different parts of the same movie, don’t laugh at the same parts of different movies, I hate the movies you like, and you hate the food I love. Even if we had the same goals, we would chase it in our own unique way.

Still we forget this, that everyone is two different people, and we burden each other with our own vision of life as if we must all have the same one or die.

Every single thing on earth is trying to wrap you in its vision. That shoe company wants you in their shoes. That teacher thinks you’d make a good lawyer, or engineer, or accountant. Your friend says be single like me. Your parents want you to be a surgeon, a lieutenant, part of the family business, but not an artist or writer. The television tells you to lose weight, put on make-up, have eye surgery, get this car, buy these clothes, and then you will be successful. Nearly everyone will tell you what you can do, can’t do, shouldn’t do, and will do. Some are right, some are wrong, but you’ll be darn sure to hear their opinion anyway. As long as you don’t, heaven forbid, think for yourself.

Nothing is satisfied with how you are and wants you to be how they think you should be. But nothing on earth has that kind of authority over you. No one has business being the boss of your vision, to inform the fixture of your individually designed soul: but we let it happen.

Over time, by degrees, fooled by the bright signs and detours, we turn our will over to everyone else’s vision. Until we are merely a concoction of pop culture, radio songs, the latest jeans, and a hairdo that will not impress your kids and their kids — it is the slow death by marketing and conformity into an eclectic pastiche of cheap imitation.

Continue reading “Everyone Else’s Vision For You”