True Spirituality, Dealing with Addiction, and Self-Help Manuals

Dealing with addictions can push a Christian to the limits of patience, trust, and exhaustion. The addiction might involve drugs, alcohol, tobacco, food, sex, pornography, power, popularity, wealth, social media, technology, or recreation—and many more. Recovering addicts soon find that they need help—help from God, help from family, help from friends, help from their church. As the battle rages to control the addiction, it has become very common for counselors and addicts alike to turn to self-help manuals. Who hasn’t been helped at least a little by getting some good biblical advice from a significant book like Heath Lambert’s Finally Free,[1] which deals with pornography and lust?… Continue reading

Conflict of Interest: Resolving Conflict One “Fear” at a Time

ArgumentsDo me a favor. “Put your finger in this webpage” and jump over to Facebook or Twitter, whichever you find yourself using the most. Don’t be shy. You have an account. I know you do. You probably found this article through one of those mediums. Now . . . what do you see? It’s likely I would get many different responses from people, because everyone’s feed is filled with different content. But you know what I see? Controversy. That’s what stands out more than anything. I bet you agree with me. Contention. Dissension. Conflict. You can’t hide from it.Continue reading

God’s Bottle of Tears: Walking with Unseen Sorrows

You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book? (Psalm 56:8)

man-in-fogIt’s the most wonderful time of the year.  Or is it?

Even for those who celebrate the fact that two millennia ago God became a man and dwelt among us in the person of Jesus of Nazereth and that this Jesus will one day return to the world in victory over sin and death, Christmas time is not an entirely joyful season.  For some, the holidays are a very difficult time, characterized (for various reasons) by bouts with discouragement and even depression. … Continue reading

Accountability – Who Needs It?

PGA Tour golfer Bubba Watson is well known for his massive power, his pink driver shaft, his left-handed swing, and for twice winning the annual Masters Tournament (including this spectacular shot to seal his first win in 2012). But he is nearly as well known among die-hard PGA tour fans for having never taken an official golf lesson. When he has a problem with a shot, or a consistent problem with his swing, it’s up to him to diagnose it – and he is evidently very good at it, as his results demonstrate.
Bubba Watson Pink Driver

However, Bubba’s independence is not the norm for most professional golfers – or anyone else in almost any other area of life.… Continue reading

28 Things You Didn’t Know About “Christian” Psychology

counselingLike any pastor, I make it a major discipline in my life to read a lot. I must; I cannot allow my tools to grow dull. And, like any pastor SHOULD, I spend a significant portion of my week counseling the flock of God. Of course, that means a significant portion of my regular readings come from books on counseling. At any given time, I’m always working through five or more books to help me diagnose the soul and apply biblical principles to the hearts of the hurting, weary, or fainthearted. It is in fact a sad reality that many pastors have absolved themselves from the responsibility to counsel.… Continue reading