June 2016 Concierge

A Baker's Dozen Destinations

Image for concierge

During my days of hotel work, guests often asked for recommendations for local points of interest. These points might be things to do, attractions to see or places to eat. Concierge is a feature that points to destinations online for guests to this blog.

This edition of Concierge points out 13 places online which proved beneficial to me during June 2016. Enjoy.

Prayer & Scripture Reading

1. 6 Reasons I Like to Read Scripture in the Morning

  • Art Rainer | ArtRainer.com | 6.2.16

By starting the day reading Scripture, some of my first thoughts of the day are about Him. And there are no better thoughts to run through my brain than those about Him. It sets the standard.

2. Looking to the Past for Lessons about Prayer

  • Thomas Kidd | 9 Marks | 6.3.16

People need pastoral and congregational prayer for the burdens they bring into church. And whatever a church’s brilliant programming, the power of God alone will fulfill a church’s mission and foster revival. No element of worship better signals Christians’ dependence upon God than prayer.

Christian Living

3. How Should Christians Handle Besetting Sins?

  • R.C. Sproul | Ligonier Ministries | 6.3.16

We need to face the fact that we commit the sin because we want to do that sin more than we want to obey Christ at that moment. That doesn’t mean that we have no desire to escape from it, but the level of our desire vacillates.

4. Abundant Joy Is Found in the Presence of Christ, Not in the Absence of Pain

  • Sarah Walton | Unlocking the Bible | 6.1.16

So often, when we go through a season of testing, or our lives are suddenly struck with suffering or tragedy, we can become so focused on waiting for the pain to end that we miss the life-giving place of abundance that can be found in Christ, right where we are.

5. The Christian Life Isn’t Meant to be Effortless

  • Don Whitney | The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary | 6.2.16

He calls us to live the Christian life with the full — though God-centered — use of our minds and judgment and everything else that is a part of our humanity.

6.  The Essence of the Calvinistic Life

  • Sinclair Ferguson | Ligonier Ministries | 6.8.16

The essence of the Calvinistic life is living in such a way as to glorify God. This, after all, is the burden of the answer to the opening question of the Shorter Catechism written by the Westminster Assembly of Divines: “Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him for ever.” Here is the ultimate surprise in Calvinism for many people: the glory of God and the enjoyment of man are not antithetical, but are correlated in the purposes of God.

7. How Our Sex Life Manifests Our Soul Health

  • John Piper | Desiring God | 6.1.16

The root issue of our horizontal distortions, homosexual and heterosexual, are rooted in this exchange: “I don’t want you in here.” And if he is not in here, everything is going wrong…

The Church in the World

8. Is Religious Freedom for Non-Christians Too?

  • Russell Moore | RussellMoore.com | 6.8.16

We are saying that religion should be free from state control because we believe that every person must give an account before the Judgment Seat of Christ.

9. Phenomenal Growth, Great Persecution: The Church in Iran

  • Kathy Norquist | Eternal Perspective Ministries | 6.1.16

Iran has the fastest growing church in the world. However, the moment an Iranian says “yes” to Jesus, persecution begins.

10. Why Abortion Makes Sense

  • Jonathan Leeman & Matthew Arbo | The Gospel Coalition | 6.1.16

Dehumanizing your enemies isn’t the only way to justify a killing. You can also harden your conscience. Yes, that is a human person I am killing. So be it.

New Resources

11. Reformed Faith & Practice

This is the first issue of the new journal from Reformed Theological Seminary.

12. The Campaign for Core Christianity

The life of faith is difficult because God sometimes seems far off, but is he really? The Campaign for Core Christianity provides learning resources that reveal God through his word. Along the way, we’ll discover how our life story only makes sense in God’s story.

Just For Fun

13. Fifteen Crazy Things That Happened At Funerals

  • Thom Rainer | ThomRainer.com | 6.1.16

Check out #15 for an Elvis reference.