Monday, August 31, 2015

Turning Pro by Steven Pressfield - Book Notes

One of my favorite books for inspiring writing, or any creative act is The War of Art by Steven Pressfield. Steven is also the author of a number of books, most notably The Legend of Bagger Vance and The Tides of War.

Pressfield also known for his burden to teach young writers how to work, and he primarily does that through his own story of "going pro" when he was around 40. Before that, by his own admission, he was pretty purposeless in the world. He has a great story with many insights and he tells it well in The War of Art and in this book. If you only have time for one, I'd read The War of Art first.

Below are some of my notes and reflections from the book. Bold quotes take under two minutes to read.


9-Ambition, I have come to believe, is the most primal and sacred fundament of our being. To feel ambition and to act upon it is to embrace the unique calling of our souls. Not to act upon that ambition is to turn our backs upon ourselves and on the reason for our existence. Those first stirrings of ambition saved me and put me on the path to becoming an artist and a professional.


by 'Shadow Career,' he means whatever work you're doing that's keeping you busy but keeping you from doing the real work you know you should be doing.
13-If you're dissatisfied with your current life, ask yourself what your current life is a metaphor for. That metaphor will point you toward your true calling. 
24-When we turn pro, the energy that went into the Shadow Novel goes into the real novel. 
69-Sometimes it's easier to be a professional in a shadow career than it is to turn pro in our real calling.


22-3-The addict is the amateur; the artist is the professional. (Addictions are) distractions, displacement activities. We enact addiction instead of embracing the calling. Why? Because to follow a calling requires hard work. It's hard. It hurts.
35-Distraction and displacement seem innocent on the surface. But lives go down the tubes one repetition at a time, one deflection at a time, one hundred and forty four characters at a time. 
39-Addiction wants to keep us shallow and unfocused. so it makes the superficial and the vain intoxicating... It can be fatal, keeping up with the Kardashians.


5-Turning pro is free, but its not easy... 
Turning pro is free, but it's not without cost.
Turning pro is free, but it demands sacrifice. 
71-When we turn pro, we stop running from our fears. We turn around and face them.
72-When we turn pro, everything become simple. Our aim centers on the ordering of our days in such a way that we overcome the fears that have paralyzed us in the past.
75-Turning pro is like 9/11 or Pearl Harbor or the assassination of President Kennedy. We never forget where we were when it happened.
43-One day, I typed THE END. That's the moment when I knew I had beaten Resistance. I had finished something.
116-[on Rosanne Cash's decision to go pro] The other thing about the changes Rosanne made after her dream is that she didn't make those changes to earn more money, or achieve greater fame, or to sell more records. [amen]. She made those changes out of respect for her craft. She made them to become a better artist and a more powerful musician.


53-The amateur fears that if he turns pro and lives out his calling, he will have to live up to who he really is and what he is truly capable of.
54-The difference lies in the way the professional acts in the face of fear.
57-Paradoxically, the amateur's self-inflation prevents him from acting. he takes himself and the consequences of his actions so seriously that he paralyzes himself.
58-The amateur fears solitude and silence because she needs to avoid, at all costs, the voice inside her head that would point her toward her calling and her destiny. So she seeks distraction. The amateur prizes shallowness and shuns depth. The culture of Twitter and Facebook is paradise for the amateur.
62-The amateur believes that, before she can act, she must receive permission from some Omnipotent Other - a lover or spouse, a parent, a boss, a figure of authority. The amateur sits on a stool... waiting to be discovered.
66-Have you ever followed a guru or a mentor? I have. I've given my power away to [others]. I've sat by the phone. I've waited for permission. I've tuned in work and waited, trembling, the judgment of others.
93-The amateur tweets. The pro works.
97-The amateur spends his time in the past and the future. He permits himself to fear and to hope. The pro has taught himself to banish those distractions.


  1. The Pro shows up every day.
  2. ...stays on the job all day.
  3. committed over the long haul.
  4. For the Pro, the stakes are high and real.
  5. The Pro is... Patient
  6. The Pro seeks order.
  7. The Pro demystifies
  8. The Pro acts in the face of fear.
  9. ...accepts no excuses.
  10. ...plays it as it lays.
  11. prepared
  12. ...does not show off
  13. ...dedicates himself to mastering technique.
  14. ...does not hesitate to ask for help.
  15. ...does not take failure or success personally.
  16. ...does not identify with his or her instrument
  17. ...endures adversity.
  18. ...self-validates.
  19. ...reinvents himself.
  20. recognized by other professionals.


103-The Monk glimpses the face of God not by scaling a peak in the Himalayas, but by sitting  still in silence... It seems counterintuitive, but it's true: in order to achieve "flow," magic, "the zone," we start by being common and ordinary and workmanlike. We set our palms against the stones in the garden wall and search, search, search until at last, in the instant when we're ready to give up, our fingers fasten upon the secret door.
106-When we do the work for itself alone (I know how easy that is to say and how hard it is to do), we're like that Marine who sleeps in a foxhole in the freezing rain but who knows a secret that only he and his brothers and sisters share. When we do work for itself alone, our pursuit of a career (or a living or fame or wealth or notoriety) turns into something else, something loftier and nobler, which we may never even have thought about or aspired to in the beginning. It turns into a practice."
107-[He talks about dedicating an entire year to writing, called his "year in the wilderness"] I was enjoying myself. Maybe nobody else liked the stuff I was doing, but I did. I was learning. I was getting better. The work became, in its own demented way, a practice. It sustained me, and it sustains me still.
44-In the end, it didn't matter. That year made me a pro. It gave me, for the first time in my life, an uninterrupted stretch of month after month that was mine alone, that body knew about but me, when I was truly productive, truly facing my demons, and truly working my [stuff]. That year has stuck with me.


109-Practice has space, and that space is sacred.
110-When we convene day upon day in the same space at the same time, a powerful energy builds up around us. This is the energy of our intention, of our dedication, of our commitment.
111-The key, according to Gladwell, is that the practice be focused.
78-"Refine your skills to support your instincts."

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Maria Popova on Being Interesting

I've recently become a addicted to the site BrainPickings. It's a fascinating mixture of reflections from mostly older books, philosophical ponderings on the meaning of life, and ideas for 'being' rather than 'doing.' Note: not everything on the site is something I support or align with. That should become quickly evident if you read a few posts.
But much more interesting to me than the site itself is the person behind it, Maria Popova. What I most appreciate is her vigilance to keep the site design and function something she would personally find interesting and rewarding. And it sure has worked for her. She has around 5-7 million readers a month. The site has no advertisements and is totally supported by donations. These last two conventions are decidedly unconventional.

I've heard a few interviews with her and found a couple of statements from a recent podcast to be especially interesting. What follows are excerpts from her interview with Krista Tippet from the show "On Being." You can listen to this uncut version on Soundcloud. Warning: there are some seriously loaded statements here that will likely require significant reflection to mentally unpack. It's amazing to listen to her deliver them smoothly like they were rehearsed. But it's clear they flow from who she is. If you're short on time - take 1:23 (i timed it) to read the quotes in bold below.

NOTE: What follows are not exact quotes, but a 95% approximate. If you want word for word (i.e. including 'uhms' and 'ahs' and stops and starts) check out the audio.


12:09- "We have a fetish of disruption in media and Journalism. [But] culture needs stewardship, not disruption. [Yes] we have forsaken stewardship. But we need both. We need a backdrop of stewardship against which the new can be built."

14:44- "For many of us the work we do is a hedge against our own worst fears for ourselves.... as a culture we seem bored with thinking. We want to instantly know. And [yet] knowing is the cessation of thinking. But we have an epidemic of 'listicles" - [so] why think about what constitutes a great work of art when you can skim the 'twenty most expensive paintings in history?' And I'm guided by this desire to counter that in myself...."

16:00-  "The reason we are consistently intolerant of long articles and even short videos - we skip forward even on those - is we've been infected with a pathological impatience that makes us want to have knowledge but not to have to do the work of claiming it."

16:38- "People will say 'I haven't been asked to think about big hard ideas like that since college...' in this culture we do all of our thinking in formal educational settings and then move on to a world of work." [this quote is a combo from Maria and the interviewer]

18:13 "Knowledge lives in a relational understanding [i.e. the relationship between ideas and bits of information]. The reason we call disjointed bits of encyclopedic information trivia [is that] the true material of knowledge is meaning, and the meaningful is the opposite of the trivial. The only thing that we glean by skimming and skipping forward is trivia. The only way to gain knowledge is contemplation and the road to that is time. There's nothing else, it's just time. There is no shortcut to the conquest of meaning and ultimately it is meaning that we seek to give to our lives."
Holy cow that was a loaded quote

19:40 - "I use Thoreau's journals as a 'spiritual text' to help me re-center... There's this beautiful passage where he talks about hard work... that the person who works hard doesn't exert themselves all day but has this leisure around accomplishing the task.  [for example] The hen lays just one egg and the rest of the time she feeds on things that feed the next egg. Today we wear this badge of honor of hard work of productivity as this halmark of purpose but in many ways it is the opposite because Thoreau's point was that the more we busy ourselves with just the drudgery of work, the more we accomplish. Parker Palmer said 'the more efficient our task, the smaller things we can imagine accomplishing.'"

27:00- "I think identity for all of us is this perpetual process and it's somewhat like constantly clearing out and rearranging an attic. And it's as much about throwing out all the furniture and trinkets that no longer serve us as it is about bringing in new ones. The process of continuing to define who we are is the process of continually eliminating what we are not."

29:15- "I think a lot about this relationship between cynicism and hope. Critical thinking without hope is cynicism. But hope without critical thinking is naiveté. And I try to live in this place between the two and build a life there. Because finding fault and feeling hopeless about improving our situation produces resignation of which cynicism is a symptom and against which it is a sort of futile self protection mechanism. [man that's a loaded sentence!] But on the other hand, believing blindly that everything will 'turn out just fine' also produces a kind of resignation because you have no motive to apply yourselves toward making things better. order to survive both as individuals and a civilization but especially in order to thrive, we need to bridge critical thinking with hope. A plant needs the right amount of water to thrive. too much it rots. too little, it dries up. So if there is any unifying philosophy to the work I do it is this constant act of getting the water just right."  

32:27- She discusses an essay she wrote discussing Vannevar Bush's article, "As We May Think" which deals with information overload. He says, “There is a new profession of trail blazers, those who find delight in the task of establishing useful trails through the enormous mass of the common record.” Her comments: "So much of what I do is an attempt to make sense of humanity's common record." 

35:45 "It's not about productivity or 'how much' a person get's done. For me it feels very purposeful. it's not a matter of how much to fill the day with 'doing' but to fill the day with 'being.' It just so happens that what I do is very aligned with the way I would like to be and the way I am being in the world. It's not done out of this compulsive productivity thing."

38:29 - The interviewer quoted an article where Maria said, "Be as religious and disciplined about your sleep as you are about anything else." Maria reflected further on the importance of this and building other pockets of rest into your life:
"I used to marvel at why my best ideas and insights on the human experience came to me at the gym or in the shower on the bike. And I used to have these elaborate theories about the movement of the body sparking a deeper consciousness... but I've really come to realize the kind of obvious thing which is that these are simply the most unburdened spaces in my life. The moments when I have the greatest uninterrupted intimacy with my own mind and my own experience. It's a kind of ordinary magic available to all of us if only we make that deliberate choice to invite it in."

38:58 - "Presence is far more intricate and rewarding and art than productivity.... and i've come to believe this the hard way [because] I too suffer from our civilizational malady of busying ourselves with the feeling of being productive so we don't have to deal with the psychic pressure of feeling purposeful or to mask the absence of that feeling. George Elliot said 'People may have in them some kind of vocation that's not quite clear to themselves. And they may seem idle and weak because they're really growing... we should be very patient with each other.' And I think we are so impatient with ourselves [as well] in our quest to find ourselves. Productivity becomes an expression of that impatience. Because to sit with that uncertainty is quite hard and we all have different strategies of avoiding that. " 

43ish- Interviewer: "You often talk about that one of the things you're looking for in content is Something that contains both timeliness and timelessness." Maria Comments on 'the problem of newsy-ness': "Journalism has concentric circles. We've come to conflate journalism with news. So much of that culture deals with the urgent and not the important. There's a sort of time bias that happens in part because of the way the internet is structured. The most recent always floats to the top. That is conditioning us to believe the most recent is most important. The older matters less and exists less to the point where we really come to believe that if it's not on google, then it didn't happen...."

"the beauty of the internet is that it's a self perfecting organism. But as long as it is an add supported medium, the motive will be to perfect commercial interest, to perfect the art of the 'listical,' the endless slide-show, the infinitely paginated article, and not to perfect the human spirit of the reader or the writer." . 

46:35 - E.B. White said, "The role of the writer is to lift people up not to lower them down. And so much of what passes for journalism today lowers."

I could have captured much more, as the interview goes on for another 30 minutes, but this enough for now....

Thursday, August 20, 2015

A Couple of Articles

The following articles are now up on FamilyLife's website. One was written by myself, and one buy a guy that serves with me at Familylife.

Even Toddlers Can Memorize Scripture

Books to Read to Your Kids

A few more are coming in the next couple of weeks. I'll make sure to post them here.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

What Does the Bible Really Teach About Homosexuality? [Book Notes]

After reading a book I often try to capture some of the notes made on the back page for later here for more about my system). Strength coach Charles Paloquin said in an interview, when asked how he can remember so much of what he reads, that his system is primarily to credit, which is as follows: he highlights as he reads (primarily on Kindle), after finishing a book he re-reads the highlights (according to him this increases retention by 75%). And finally at the end of the week he will re-read his highlights from all his books (increasing retention by 95%). Though he does have a strong memory, he also places a great importance on his method. Capturing book notes is part of my method for remembering what I have read.

Below are my notes from Kevin DeYoung's book What Does the Bible Really Teach About Homosexuality. You can listen to a three part interview with KD on the book here.

40 - "Holy" or "holiness" occurs 87x in Leviticus
41 - "That Lev 18 spends so much time carefully delineating which sexual relationships are sinfully too 'close' and therefore incestuous (vv.6-17) suggests that no such parsing is necessary with respect to homsexuality because the condemnation is absolute."
"the key consideration (really the only one mentioned in the text) is the gender of those engaged in sexual activity. Whether the participants were willing or of age does not come into play."
43 - "There's no indication in the NT that Lev. should be treated as particularly obscure or peripheral. Quite the contrary. Jesus referred to Leviticus 19:18 ('Love your neighbor as yourself.') more than any other verse in the OT, and the NT refers to it 10 times."
44 - BOOK Robert A. Gagnon, The Bible and Homosexual Practice: Texts and Hermeneutics (Nashville, TN: Abingdon, 2001).
45 - "All the sexual sins in Lev 18 are lumped together under the term 'abominations,' but only male-with-male sex is singled out by itself as an abomination. In fact, it is the only forbidden act given this label in the entire Holiness Code."
46 - "Ritual impurity and moral impurity are two analogous yet distinct categories. Cleanness still matters in the NT, but it becomes an exclusively moral category instead of a ritual one."
52 - "In Pauls mind, same-sex sexual intimacy is an especially clear illustrion of the idolatrous human impusl to turn away from God's order and design."
53 - "Romans 1:27 does not speak to the state of our desires, but to the state of our design."
54 - BOOK: Thomas K Hubbard, ed., Homosexuality in Greece and Rome: A sourcebook of Basic Documents (Berkely, CA: University of California Press, 2003).
72 - "The reason the Bible says comparatively little about homosexuality is because it was a comparatively uncontroversial sin among ancient Jews and Christians."
74 - Bible is never indifferent about sexual sin: "It cannot be overstated how seriously the Bible treats the sin of sexual immorality. Sexual sin is never considered adiaphora, a matter of indifference, an agree-to-disagree issue like food laws or holy days (Rom 14:1-15:7). To the contrary, sexual immortality is precisely the sort of sin that characterizes those who will not enter the kingdom of heaven.".... "You will be hard-pressed to find a sin more frequently, more uniformly, and more seriously condemned in the NT than sexual sin."
75 - Jesus condemned the sin of Porneai: Mark 7:21, a "broad word encompassing every kind of sexual sin." - "Jesus didn't have to give a special sermon on homsexuality because all of his listeners understood that same-sex behavior was prohibited in the Pentateuch and reckoned as one of the many expressions of sexual sin (porneia) off limits for the Jews."
"He [Jesus] affirmed the abiding authority of the OT (Matt 5:17-18)."
76 - "...shouldn't we keep talking to each other? Talking is not the problem. The problem is when incessant talking becomes a cover for indecision or even cowardice... It's death by dialogue."
77 - "Scripture often warns us - and in the severest terms-against finding our sexual identity apart from Christ and against pursuing sexual practice inconsistent with being in Christ... The same is not true when it comes to sorting out the millennium or deciding which instruments to use in worship."
scholars of note on page: Hubbard, William Loader, Bernadette Brooten.
85 - NT Wright on Plato's Symposium, "I have to say that... it seems to me they knew just as much about [homosexuality] as we do... they knew a great deal about what people today would regard as longer-term, reasonably stable relations between two people of the same gender."
90 - [a response to the question of "what about gluttony and divorce?"] "Do we really want to suggest that one sin is no big deal because we've been lax about a different sin? If Christians are wrongly tolerant of unrepentant gluttony, this is a matter of extreme importance."
91 - "The Catholic catechism does not call them seven 'Deadly sins,' but 'capital sins,' because they engender other sings and other vices."
94 - "there are important differences between divorce and homosexuality. For starters, the biblical prohibition against divorce explicitly allow for exceptions; the prohibition against homosexuality does not."
98 - "If we preach a 'gospel' with no call to repentance, we are preaching something other than the apostolic gospel."
99 - Regret is common; repentance is rare. Metanoia means a change of mind that results in a change of life:
  • You change your mind about yourself: "I am not fundamentally a good person deep down. I am not the center of the universe. I am not the king of the world or even my life."
  • You change your mind about sin. "I am responsible for my actions. My past hurts do not excuse my present failings. My offenses against God and against others are not trivial. I do not live or think or feel as I should."
  • You change your mind about God: "He is trustworthy. His word is sure. He is able to forgive and to save. I believe in his Son, Jesus Christ. I owe him my life and my allegiance. he is my King and my Sovereign, and he wants what is best for me. I will follow him no matter the cost."
  • And then you change as God works in you to work out your salvation with fear and trembling (Phil. 2:12-13).
100 - D.Bonhoeffer quote: Free Grace is Not Cheap: "[Cheap grace is] the grace which amounts to the justification of sin without the justification of the repentant sinner who departs from sin and from whom sin departs. Cheap grace is not the kind of forgiveness of sin which frees us from the toils of sin. Cheap grace is the grace we bestow on ourselves. Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession, absolution without personal confession. Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate."(from Cost of Discipleship, p.47).
103 - The phrase, 'you're on the wrong side of history,' seeks to win an argument by not having one.
104-105 - [section titles] the phrase assumes a progressive view of history that is empirically false and as a methodology has ben thoroughly discredited.
The phrase... also forgets that progressive ideas can prove just as disastrous as traditional ones.
The phrase... usually perpetuates half-truths and misinformation about Christian history. (i.e. Every educated person in Columbus's day one the earth was round.)
106 - "the view that the sun revolved around the earth was not the product of theological and moral reflection."
107 - "To make it sound like the word of God is plainly for slavery in the same way it is plainly against homosexual practice is biblically indefensible."
111 - logic: "If the 'is-ness' of personal experience and desire determines the 'ought-ness' of embracing these desires and acting upon them, there is no logical reason why other sexual 'orientations' (say, toward children, or animals, or promiscuity, or bisexuality, or multiple partners) should be stigmatized."
112 - "No matter how we think we might have been born one way, Christ insists that we must be born again a different way (John 3:3-7; Eph. 2:1-10).
114 - "Resisting sexual desire is a part of discipleship for every Christian, no matter our marital status... Intense longing does not turn sinful wrongs into civil rights."
"if chastity is too much to ask of the person with same-sex sexual desires, then it is too much to ask of the person with heterosexual desires. What about the single Christian woman who never finds a husband?"
117 - "We must base our ethical decision on something more than our subjective sense of what feels right."
122 - "God is love... but God is light (I John 1:5), Spirit (John 4:24), and a 'consuming fire' (heb. 12:29).
"no halfway responsible parent would ever think that loving her child means affirming his every desire and finding ways to fulfill whatever wishes he deems important."
123 - In revelation, to thyatira, jesus says, "you're lving in many ways, but your tolerance is not love. It's unfaithfulness."
126 - Bereans, Acts 17:11
127 - "The God we worship is indeed a God of love. Which does not, according to any verse in the Bible, make sexual sin acceptable."
131 - STATS - "According to one study by a sociologist at the University of Texas, churchgoing Christians who support same-sex marriage were much more likely than churchgoing Christians who oppose same-sex marriage to agree or strongly agree that viewing pornography is OK (33.4% to 4.6%), that premarital cohabitation is good (37.2% to 10.9%), that no-strings attached sex is OK (33.0% to 5.1%), and that it's OK for three or more adults to live in a sexual relationship (15.5% to 1.2%). Those in favor of same-sex marriage were also more likely to support abortion rights (39.1% to 6.5%). And each of these percentages was even higher when polling those who self-identify as gay and lesbian Christians-57% thought viewing pornography was permissible, 49.7% agreed that cohabitation before marriage was good, 49.0% believed no-stirngs-attached sex was OK, 31.9% were fine with polyamorous relationships, and 57.5% support abortion rights (Mark Regnerus, "Tracking Christian Morality in a Same-Sex Marriage Future, Public Discourse, August 11, 2014"
132 - Two important (but sad) QUOTES
Luke Timothy Johnson "A well respected NT scholar who supports homosexual behavior, speaks to the issue with refreshing candor....
I think it important to state clearly that we do, in fact, reject the straightforward commands of Scripture, and appeal instead to another authority when we declare that same-sex unions can be holy and good. And what exactly is that authority? We appeal explicitly to the weight of our own experience and the experience thousands of others have witnessed to, which tells us that to claim our own sexual orientation is in fact to accept the way in which God has created us.
[footnote at bottom of page...]
"Similarly, Diarmaid MacCulloch, a decorated historian and gay man wo left the church over the issue of homosexuality, has written: "This is an issue of biblical authority. Despite much well-intentioned theological fancy footwork to the contrary, it is difficult to see the Bible as expressing anything else but disapproval of homosexual activity, let alone having any conception of a homosexual identity. The only alternatives are either to try to cleave to patterns of life and assumptions set out in the Bible, or to say that in this, as in much else, the Bible is simply wrong." (The Reformation: A History [New York: Penguin, 2003], 705)."
133 - "The path which leads to the affirmation of homosexual behavior is a journey which inevitably leaves behind a clear, inerrant Bible, and picks up from liberalism a number of assumptions about the importance of individual authority and cultural credibility."
134 - "The support for homosexual behavior almost always goes hand in hand with the diluting of robust, 100-proof orthodoxy, either as the cause or the effect."
139 - "Marriage... is a pre political institution.... It is a sad irony that those who support same-sex marriage on libertarian grounds are actually ceding to the state a vast amount of heretofore unknown power.... Now the state defines marriage and authorizes its existence (rather than recognizing marriage)."
140-141 "Having the right to marry is not the same as having a right to the state's validation that each and every sexual relationship is marriage.... the Pacifist has a right to join the army, but he does not have the right to inist tha the army create a nonviolent branch of the military for him to join."
actually, he can request/insist if he wants. Doesn't mean the army has to comply.
"Same-sex unions cannot be accepted as marriage without devaluing all marriages, because the only way to embrace same-sex partnerships as marriage is by chaining what marriage means altogether."
-cultural defn of marriage: "a demonstration of commitment sexually expressed."

This next section I found to be one of the most helpful parts of the book for helping churches move forward.

149-150: The Church and Homosxuality: Ten Commitments

  1. We will encourage our leaders to preach through the Bible verse by verse and chapter by chapter that they might teach the whole counsel of God (even the unpopular parts) and avoid riding hobby horses (Even popular ones).
  2. We will tell the truth about all sins, including homosexuality, but especially the sins most prevalent in our communities.
  3. We will guard the truth of God's Word, protect God's people from error, and confront the world when it tries to press us into its mold.
  4. We will call all people to faith in christ as the only way to the Father and the only way to have eternal life.
  5. We will speak to all people about the good news that jesus died in our place and rose again so that we might be set free from the curse of the law, saved from the wrath of God, and welcomed into the holy city at the restoration of all rings.
  6. We will treat all Christians as new creations in Christ, reminding each other that our true identity is not based on sexuality or self-expression but on our union with christ.
  7. We will extend God's forgiveness to all those who come in brokenhearted repentance, everyone from homosexual sinners to heterosexual sinners, from the proud to the greedy, from the people pleaser to the self-righteous.
  8. We will ask for forgiveness when we are rude or thoughtless or joke about those who experience same-sex attraction.
  9. We will strive to be a community that welcomes all those who hate their sin and struggle against it, even she that struggle involves failures and setbacks.
  10. We will seek to love all in our midst, regardless of their particle vices or virtues, by preaching the bible, recognizing evidences of God's grace, pointing out behaviors that dishonor the Lord, taking church membership seriously, exercising church discipline, announcing the free offer of the gospel, striving for holiness together, practicing the "one anthers" of Christian discipleship, and exulting in Christ above all things.

Key verses to memorize:
Jude 7
Lev 18:22
Lev 20:13
Matt 5:17-18
Lev 19:18
Rom 1:18-32
Mk 1:15
Lk 3:8
Acts 17:11 (Bereans)
Jn 15:18-25
Job 31:1