Monday, December 31, 2012

Read NT in greek in a year

Working on a "Top books" post for 2012, and reading goals for 2013, but until then, for all those who have learned a little greek but let it slip, consider reading through the New Testament in Greek this year. Here are a couple of helpful posts on how to approach it, along with tracking calendars:

Post and Calendar by Denny Burk

Post and Calendar by Lee Irons

Set a timer for 20 minutes and read all you can for the day's segment on the schedule. Once the timer is up, read quickly through the remaining verses, reading the greek without translating (except for words you already know). This approach, over time, expands ones ability to read greek, even though it feels like you're not getting so much out of it at first.

If you're thinking of taking on this challenge, I'd love to hear about it in the comments. Might help bring a little accountability and camaraderie for both of us.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

All Jesus did...

"All Jesus did was to teach men that they loved themselves, that they were slaves, blind, sick, unhappy and sinful, that he had to deliver, enlighten, sanctify and heal them, that this would be achieved by men hating themselves and following him through his misery and death on the Cross."

-Blaise Pascal, from Pensees

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


Speaking of favorite parenting works, this fall we again worked through the book Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp. This time it was with a group of young parents and the prestigous experienced couple, Rob and Teresa Smith. I have a ton, ton, ton of respect for the Smiths (right front in photo) and was very encouraged by all the parents who were involved and the hard work they put forth engaging with the material. And it was a tremendous refresher course for us as well, having an 8 year old, one in the toddler years, and one on the way in a few weeks. Without intentional effort, it is all too easy to forget the basics and revert to sloppy habits with each passing year.

Why do parents forget and get sloppy? Because the mallet of parenting will slowly beat you down like a mechanical gopher at the state fair. Enough whacks and you learn it's easier to just lay low and avoid the conflict. The idol of happiness takes over in a hurry when a mini-me flails for attention in the middle of the condiments aisle at Walmart. Every cold eye set on the situation screams "Give them whatever they want - just make it stop!!!"At that moment you wonder, "Was dijonaise really this essential?"

It seems that the natural tendency of the heart of a parent is to move toward expediency and convenience, rather than working hard and fighting for your child's heart. Praise God for friends,  resources, and the power of the Holy Spirit that all help keep us on track with applying the gospel in every parenting situation. No one does it perfectly, but yet we strive to keep the shaping of the heart at the center of our parenting goals.

So if you see the Smiths out riding their tandem bike, make sure to leave lots of room in the lane, as we want to preserve their wisdom for many more parents to absorb!

Such a happy group of parents. Lots of smiles. Notice no kids around. Coincidence?