8 Characteristics of a Godly Decision Maker

Compass

God’s will is something that everybody wants to know. Where will I live when I grow up? Where will I work? Who will I marry? The list goes on and on.

Why do we want to know all of these things anyway? Probably because we want “peace” about a decision or want to have a life free of uncertainty and with minimal risk. While that’s understandable, it’s not necessarily the way God’s will works. As RC Sproul said, “Many Christians become preoccupied or even obsessed with finding the ‘will’ of God for their lives…. Far from being a mark of spirituality, the quest for God’s secret will is an unwarranted invasion of God’s privacy. God’s secret counsel is none of our business.” Too often we spend so much time trying to figure out the parts of God’s will that He doesn’t want us to know yet, that we forget to do the things He has already clearly told us to do. Burk Parsons puts it this way: “So many are looking for special revelation from God while it sits on their shelves gathering dust.”

How should we seek God’s will then? Romans 12:2 gives us a hint: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”   Read more of this post

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Motivations for Discipleship

White Arrow On Blue Ground

This blog post was adapted from a sermon that I gave at the Harvard Avenue Student Ministry‘s Disciple Now event on Friday, October 25, 2013.

Key Text: Colossians 3:1-13

Each follower of Christ, no matter how young or old, needs to take up his cross daily and pursue Jesus. Most Christians know that they need discipleship, but how do we get motivated to be and make disciples?

Apathy is a growing problem in America. The combination of economic and societal changes with an increased “busyness” has left many without the drive necessary to pursue bigger and better things. In 2011, the motivational market hit $11 billion in revenue. The average motivational speaker gets paid $4000-5000 per speaking event, with some commanding fees in excess of $100,000 per engagement.

Christians aren’t immune to apathy. In fact, one of the largest problems in the church today is biblical illiteracy stemming from believers not reading Scripture for themselves. Even fewer share the gospel or form discipleship relationships with other believers.

Motivations for Discipleship

To overcome this tendency towards apathy, here are 6 motivations for discipleship from Colossians 3:1-13:  Read more of this post

Disciplined Disciples, Part 2

Bible Study 2

This blog post was adapted from a sermon that I gave at the Harvard Avenue Student Ministry youth group on Wednesday, January 9, 2013, as well as two talks Donald Whitney gave on Spiritual Disciplines at First Baptist Church in Fort Smith on February 8, 2013. 

Key Text: 1 Timothy 4:6-16

In Disciplined Disciples, Part 1, I made the case that all Christians have been called by Jesus to be and make disciples. If any person chooses to follow Christ, they must be ready to seek him through spiritual disciplines. In fact, we have redeemed so that we can pursue holiness. Using a story of my brother and I, I showed how holiness gives direction to our daily practice of spiritual disciplines.

What are spiritual disciplines? Spiritual disciplines are those personal and corporate activities that promote spiritual growth. In other words, spiritual disciplines are like spiritual exercises. They are ways we can place ourselves in the path of God’s grace so that, over time, He can transform us “from one degree of glory to another” (2 Corinthians 3:18). While not every spiritual discipline is practiced on a daily basis, there are two that should be done every day: Bible intake and prayer.  Read more of this post

Disciplined Disciples

This blog post was adapted from a sermon that I gave at the Harvard Avenue Student Ministry youth group on Wednesday, January 9, 2013. It was also recently featured on The Millstone Blog.

Key Text: 1 Timothy 4:6-16

Chris and I at the 2012 Passion Conference

A Tale of Two Brothers

When I was a freshman or sophomore in high school, I decided that I wanted to learn how to play electric guitar. Being the good big brother I am, I also persuaded my little brother that he should learn to play bass so that we could start a band at some point in the future. He wasn’t terribly excited about the idea at first, but we both ended up asking Santa for our respective instruments that Christmas.  Read more of this post

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