Archive - Discipline

The Purpose of Hope: Not What Many Think

Purpose of Hope

It’s more than just the grayness and the cold of winter. There seems to be a lot of pain and heartache everywhere you look right now.

Many are in desperate need for God to reach out and give them… hope.

So I looked to the scriptures for a little inspiration, a little nugget of optimism to give those who are hurting around me. And there was a constant theme that kept coming up – one that took me a little by surprise and one that I just couldn’t get away from.

It all centers around God’s purpose for hope.

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Pray Because Good Intentions Are Not Enough

Good Intentions Aren't Enough

“The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

I heard this phrase often growing up. It normally was someone’s way of justifying or excusing their failure. They politely blamed everything on a lack of ability but assured you that you shouldn’t be too upset – because after all, their intentions were good.

And that’s all that really matters, right?

Yet when Christ said these words, his entire point was the exact opposite. Good intentions aren’t enough.

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Satan Attacks You with Good Things

Satan attacks with good things

Beware of good things, because the enemy of best isn’t bad. It’s good.

This is well known by Satan.

The power of Satan’s attacks lies in their deception. The enemy’s primary strategy is not to overwhelm us with his power, but to outwit us with his craftiness.

John Piper with a wise word about how tricky the attacks from Satan are:

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God’s Half-Time Speech

God's Half-Time Speech

It’s the best moment in sports movies: the motivational speech given by the coach during half-time. The team entered the locker room disheartened but leaves determined and ready to play their best.

A lot of us are winded and in need of a good pump-up speech ourselves.

And God gives a great one – although it’s not quite the speech that we may have expected.

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When Your Passion Is Cooling Off

When Your Passion Cools OffIt’s hard spending our days pursuing the kingdom and trying not to waste our lives. There are many dangers and obstacles in our path.

But the greatest threats aren’t the traumatic events or the opposition from others or the great crossroads we face.

The greatest danger is simply cooling off.

Not seeing results. Feeling insignificant. Thinking that we’re not really making a difference one way or the other.

But Paul gives us encouragement in the sixth chapter of Galatians.

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Even When Your Best Seems No Good, God Is with You

God is with you

You’re putting in the hours. You’re hustling.

But the results aren’t coming in – at least now how you hoped.

It could be a career, your marriage, your ministry, your health, or any area of your life. You feel discouraged and you want to quit.

You’re not the first to feel this way. Take a lesson from the Israelites.

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Jesus Was a Finisher

Jesus Was a Finisher

John  4:34: “Jesus said to them, ‘My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work.'”

John 17:4: “I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.”

God gave Jesus work. Not to merely try – but to accomplish. To finish.

Jesus was a finisher.

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Sometimes Prayer Is Just Procrastination

Prayer is Procrastination

There are some times when we shouldn’t read our Bibles – some times when it’s not right to bow our heads in prayer.

It seems so unspiritual to say that.

And that’s exactly why prayer and Bible study are such dangerous candidates for procrastination.

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One Reason Why You Shouldn’t Downplay the Sin of Wasted Time

Drawbacks to Downplaying the Sin of Wasted Time

I’ve written before about how we tend to minimize the sin of wasting time. We convince ourselves it’s no big deal.

We do that in order to avoid the devastation we feel when we look at God’s perfect standard. But our strategy backfires and we end up missing the life-changing freedom of the gospel.

The problem goes further, though. There are other ways that this plays out. When we downplay our sin, we can actually miss out on some of the blessings that God has for us.

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Laziness: Unpacking the Biblical View

The Apostle Paul gives a stern command against laziness in 2 Thessalonians chapter 3.

2 Thessalonians 3:6-8
Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition that you received from us. For you yourselves know how you ought to imitate us, because we were not idle when we were with you,nor did we eat anyone’s bread without paying for it, but with toil and labor we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you.

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