Speaking the Truth in Love

Church Blog (Page 3)

Quick to Forgive

On our 25th wedding anniversary, Carolyn and I spent the weekend in a quaint Indiana town near Bloomington. On Sunday morning, we visited a friendly church there. The brother presenting the Lord’s Supper comment said an insightful thing: We tend to be quick to condemn, but God is quick to forgive.” Being quick to condemn…

Growing in Prayer

Are you interested in having a more stimulating private prayer life? If so the five biblical suggestions described below should help: Pray in Unusual Places. Jesus went up into the hills to pray (Matt. 14:23), and Paul knelt in prayer on the beach (Acts 21:5). Praying in an unusual place is spiritually invigorating, and the…

Is It Wrong to Be Righteous?

One Saturday I tuned the radio station to ESPN, hoping to hear some talk about a game to be played later in the day. That morning the host of the program was irate over an email from a listener offended by the show’s affiliation with a liquor company. “Don’t write us again,” the host snarled.…

Sunshine and Shadow

Daily life in the church reminds us that suffering touches one family after another. Some families are struggling with serious health problems – cancer, injuries, chronic pain, age-related disabilities. Others feel overwhelmed by emotional pain. They have lost a spouse or child. They are broken by a divorce. Or they grieve over a defiant child’s…

Are You Dressed for the Wedding?

Carolyn and I ate dinner at Cracker Barrel one winter night some years ago. One of the other diners, a 10-year-old boy, was unusually dressed. He was wearing pajamas, a bathrobe, and a heavy coat. Imagining the conversation before the family left home for dinner was entertaining: “Charlie, put on some pants. We’re going to…

How to Build and Maintain a Dysfunctional Group

By Jerrie Barber Do you know a toxic elder, preacher, deacon, or Bible teacher (male or female)? Toxic leaders exhibit attitudes and behaviors such as these: They know everything, refuse to listen, gossip, betray confidences, criticize constantly, label everyone who disagrees with them a false prophet, attend church activities irregularly, act independently even though they…

Languages of Love

In 1992, Gary Chapman published his popular book “The Five Love Languages.” He wanted couples to understand that people express and interpret love in different ways. One woman feels cherished when her husband buys roses, but another wife prefers help with the dishes. One husband feels most loved when his wife pays him compliments, but…

Heaven and Wife

“Husbands,” Peter says, “in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers” (1 Pet. 3:7, NIV). This teaching came to mind several years ago when…

My Friend Sam

My friend Sam, a Christian brother in West Virginia, is blind, deaf, and mute. His wife called me about 10 years ago, introducing herself and describing Sam’s situation. Judy wondered if I could help them locate Bible-related braille resources. Sam was especially eager to find a copy of the Old Testament. After learning that his…

The Bible’s Amazing Harmony

The Bible’s amazing consistency is strong evidence for its divine inspiration. The 66 biblical books were written on three continents by about 40 people over a period of approximately 1,600 years. These authors, writing in three different languages, had widely varying life experiences. Some were wealthy, influential, and scholarly; others were fishermen, shepherds, or farmers.…