I’m sure that most of us agree with Bonhoeffer that the confession of sin, grounded in the gospel, is a vital component of our personal spirituality. But we get a little uncomfortable when it comes to corporate dimensions of confession. It’s not too threatening to engage in silent confession when the liturgy calls us to do so in the weekend service, but when it comes to times of confession in small-group settings, we often settle for less-indicting statements like “I’m struggling with . . .” Even then, we have the gnawing sense that our vague, toothless non-confessions aren’t fulfilling the exhortation of James 5:16, “Confess your sins to one another and pray for one another that you may be healed.”
Kindle deals for Christian readers
In case you missed these late additions to yesterday’s list, here are a few really great Kindle deals:
- To Live Is Christ To Die Is Gain by Matt Chandler and Jared Wilson—$3.49
- CrossTalk by Michael Emlet—$2.99
- Glorious Ruin by Tullian Tchividjian—$3.49
- Perspectives on Family Ministry by Timothy Paul Jones—$2.99
- God’s Indwelling Presence by James Hamilton—$2.99
Hugh Whelchel and Anne Rathbone Bradley:
In a recent sermon I heard about money, the pastor tell his congregation, “You need to learn to be content.” But this command can actually encourage complacency instead of true biblical contentment.
Being content usually means you should be satisfied with your current situation. It is often supported by quotes from Scripture, like Philippians 4:11-13.
Does Paul mean you should not try to improve your current situation, find a better job, earn more money, or further your education? Are we supposed to passively sit back and watch life go by? What about our call to be “salt and light of the earth”?
So how can we be content without becoming complacent and lazy?
During the busy summer month of July, Crossway wants to help you get in the Word and stay in the Word! Join us for Women of the Word Month, a 31-day campaign to encourage and equip you for Bible study aimed at both your head and your heart. Sign up today to receive helpful content sent directly to your email inbox, including:
1. A DAILY DEVOTIONAL guiding you through the story of the Old Testament, including suggestions for reflection and prayer
2. PRACTICAL ARTICLES written by some of your favorite authors to encourage and equip you for personal or small group Bible study
3. VIDEO INTERVIEWS with well-known Christian women related to the life-changing power of God’s Word Includes contributions from Jen Wilkin, Kathy Keller, Kristyn Getty, Nancy Guthrie, Gloria Furman, Elyse Fitzpatrick, and more!
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David Murray shares a disheartening health update. Please keep him in your prayers, friends.
Martyn Wendell Jones:
The sun hangs low and orange in the sky and casts long shadows off trees, telephone poles, and the associate pastor, whose severe lean toward home plate has locked his sweat-dampened butt in place six inches above his fold-up canvas chair. “Come on, Josephus,” he says, hands on knees, “let them have it!” He falls back into his seat like a keeling ship and jabs his hand into the sledge of an adjacent cooler. Sweat glitters on his scalp under thin hair formed into diaphanous spikes.
The “Josephus” in question is actually Joe Schmale, Pastor of Adult Ministries at Cable Road Church of the Nazarene, and he is presently narrowing his eyes at the figure about to lob a ball at him. He wears a skintight batting glove on one hand and has brought his own bat from home, where he has six bats. He wears a brace on one knee.