In every season, the Lord desires my active and ongoing conformity with Christ. In 2018, the Spirit will labor to bring out the fruit of God’s justification in my character and life with others (Galatians 5:22-23). Remembering John 17:17, below are a few ways I hope to cooperate with the Spirit’s work in me this year.Read More
Filtering by Category: Sanctification
It’s interesting how discomfort can reveal the heart. The happy, pleasant wife and mother may not be as quick to smile and forgive when exhausted, late, frustrated, hungry, or hot. Most days, I like to think of myself as a “mature Christian;” and then comes the moment that exposes amazing weakness and reminds me of my desperate need for a long-suffering and gracious Sanctifier.Read More
Today is my birthday. I’m 35. I woke up this morning with a blog post on my mind; not a new one to write but one written four years ago on my 31st birthday. That post is below. I read it this morning and it encouraged me to pray for the grace to persevere. I want to run as though to win the prize...I don't want to waste my life (1 Corinthians 9:24).Read More
I'm thankful to the Reformed African American Network for their re-post of my 2014 article, Parental Failures and the Gospel. The beginning paragraphs follow and the full post can be found here. Always grateful for your read!
I could begin this post with countless descriptions of my parental failures. Moments when anger got the best of me; times when a little patience would have made all the difference; or just plain insecurities in making the right decisions for my children at every moment and at every stage of their development.
You might agree that feelings of inadequacy are common to parents; whether relatively new like me or seasoned with experience, we feel the weight of the responsibility and the immensity of the task. But in some ways, feelings of inadequacy can be a blessing!Read More
Sisters, I don’t speak here of petty surface glances of the Word; just enough to make you feel good about your Christianity. I speak of women who understand that they are commanded to present themselves to God as approved and unashamed workers, rightly handling the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15). Believing this, they read. They read carefully and deeply. They string pieces together until they interpret the Bible by the Bible. They knit sections together to unfold the big picture of the gospel.Read More
In other words, atonement of sin is settled for those whose trust is in Christ alone. So then God doesn’t love you less when you sin today and more when you obey tomorrow. Instead He loves you because you are His—an adopted son/daughter, made clean through His Son and sealed and preserved by His Spirit (2 Corinthians 1:21-22; Ephesians 1:13-14).
But what of your persistent sins? Here, we find that Christ still washes the feet of His disciples. What do I mean? “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean” (John 13:10). Those justified in Christ are Simul Justus et Peccator—at the same time just (or righteous) and sinner. We are positioned in Christ and are seen by God through His imputed righteousness yet inherently we sin. We are clean saints with dirty feet. But just as our justification is achieved by God alone, so is our sanctification enabled by Him alone.Read More
My prayer today then is to have an attitude like that of Calvin’s – a disposition that fears a wasted life over death. I want to do well for the Lord – an alert and useful servant who keeps a lamp burning and whose Master finds her dressed in the hour of His need (Luke 12:35-40). My prayer is that my heart would not be captured by dissipation, distractions, and the cares of life but would be consumed by a love for Christ (Luke 21:34). How ever many years there might be for me, I want to live each one jealously for His glory.Read More
I believed myself a Christian long before I was. I grew up attending church, affirming the existence of God, and even praying to the Lord Jesus but there was nothing much beyond this. I had no affection for Christ: no true worship; no fervency in prayer; no hunger for His Word. Was I wild and unruly? Not at all. I was motivated to do well in school and so made straight A’s. I was eager to please at home and so assisted in the care of younger siblings. I enjoyed simple contemplation and so read volumes of Jane Austen in quiet corners. I was even made an example by some as a good girl – but saved I was not.Read More
I would have been a good monk and a great Pharisee. I like rules. I like order. I like disciplining myself, especially if it brings the commendation of others, particularly those in authority. This inclination is constant and often reveals itself in self-judgment. I can be hard on myself—all the while justifying my strict tendencies as a desire for progressive sanctification. But even godly pursuits can be perverted if not seen in light of the gospel.Read More
We have all tasted temptation. For the Christian, temptation is both a pre- and post-regeneration reality. James, writing to Jewish believers, states: “Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am being tempted by God,’ for God cannot be tempted with evil, and He Himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death” (James 1:13-15).Read More
I have decided to choose my kids over Facebook. In reality the choice isn't just about Facebook but the many trivial distractions that take my focus away from my children. Picture the scene for a moment – it might be familiar to you – I’m sitting in the playroom of our home, my soon-to-be three-year-old is playing with her kitchen set and my seven-month-old is chewing on some toy nearby. I’m physically present with them but my attention is given to the 12 inch computer screen in front of me.Read More
I love the book of Deuteronomy. Not necessarily for its copious detail but for the concept behind the book. Deuteronomy is essentially one big study hall. Moses is the teacher and the children of Israel are the students. The wilderness east of the Jordan River is their classroom. And there they assemble to review God’s expectation of them before conquering the Promised Land.Read More
I begin this post with a little self-disclosure: I don’t know how to run! What do I mean? Let’s just say, if you saw me running, you would understand perfectly well what I mean. To be specific, I was never taught (or perhaps I failed to learn) how to properly bend my knees when running. The result is a stride that slightly resembles a duck.Read More