Two Common Views on Church That Don't Make Sense

Two Common Views on Church That Don’t Make Sense

When I was in college, an older man told me the greatest decision I had to make after becoming a Christian was deciding to which church I would give my life and call home. Here's why. ...
Singing Dangerous Songs

Singing Dangerous Songs

I grew up in the land of Woody Guthrie. The folk singer grew up about thirty miles from my hometown, and his legacy is well known in the area. Guthrie is best known as the folk ...
Why We Value Brokenness

Why We Value Brokenness

The Christmas season was in full swing, and I was in a hurry. Not only because there were a million and one things to get done before the big day but because, on this particular day, ...
I Did Not Invite Her

Why My Friend Didn’t Come to Church

Every week, I hear stories about what is happening around Valley Life Church. I know that you want to invite someone—maybe several people—to the Christmas Eve service at Tramonto, Surprise, or Arrowhead. And I know you ...
Sexual Assault, Jesus, and Me

Sexual Harassment, Jesus, and Me

I was a freshman at a Christian university in South Carolina. He was the head of security for that university. He paid me $50 a week to take part in an exercise program, and he monitored ...
Three Roadblocks to Following Jesus

Three Roadblocks to Following Jesus

Most people that I encounter really like Jesus, or at least their concept of him. They see Jesus as loving, gracious, forgiving, and anti-establishment. That concept is not entirely wrong. It is difficult for them to ...
Relationship-Based Discipleship

Relationship-Based Discipleship

There wasn't a Bible study, or Scripture memory, or even prayer. There were barbells on the floor, reps to be done, and a lot of sweat. Some would say it wasn't discipleship. I would disagree. I ...
Engaging Emotions Without Manipulating Them

Engaging Emotions Without Manipulating Them

As I write this I’m listening to U2’s seminal album, The Joshua Tree, and I hear Bono singing about how he still hasn’t found what he’s looking for. After that album was released, the band did ...
Motivation and Acknowledgment

The Link Between Motivation and Acknowledgment

In his book Payoff, behavioral economist Dan Ariely recounts an experiment involving motivation. In short, participants were asked to perform a meaningless task, circling pairs of matched letters on randomly generated sheets of paper. When they ...

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