I am grateful for those who read this blog in 2019 and those who shared it with others. I hope that the posts have been encouraging and helpful. Below are those read most often in 2019.
Besides the ten below, other consistently popular posts include those on the reasoning with children, the seeming lack of conscience, purposes of marriage, self-esteem, and hearing from God in subjective and mystical ways.
10. Josiah’s Fire This is a book review that, due to pushback, led to a series on hearing from God subjectively. Serving up the attraction of warm, fuzzy sentiments and titillating claims that a little autistic boy visited heaven, talked with the dead, and heard from God frequently, this book promotes trusting one’s subjective experiences and undermines the doctrines of the authority and sufficiency of Scripture and the person and work of Christ.
9. He…thought of me above all? This is an attempt to remind us of who God’s plan of redemption, kingdom, and glory is really about.
8. In the Shadow of His Wings (Pt 2): What are the Benefits? How might the beautiful imagery of the shadow of God’s wings comfort and encourage a believer in the midst of hardships, grief, oppression, or other trials?
7. No Trust, No Love. Really? It is a popular notion that a person cannot love another unless they first trust him or her. Trust is, in certain relationships, extremely important and enhances love, but can it be justified as a necessary prerequisite before you can love another? This post is one of a series. The related posts will set it in a broader context.
6. When You Send Your Child to Residential Treatment Handing the care and nurture of your child over to a residential facility may pose challenges for the family. Here are what parents might experience personally, what siblings might experience, and some big-picture ideas on what parents can do to grow spiritually, help the siblings adjust, and prepare for successful reentry of the troubled child into the home.
5. Parenting the Difficult Child This page introduces my book and gives some background on it that is not in the book. The book is being used by parents whose children are often disobedient and oppositional. Additionally, it appeals to adoptive parents and parents whose children behave according to the psychological label Reactive Attachment Disorder. While psychologists have helpfully categorized behaviors under a label, their views and solutions are a mix of what the Bible already teaches and what is not biblical. Part of this book contrasts this man-made view with the Word of God and, in doing so, sets the Christian moving into biblical thinking about other psychology-constructed models.
4. Marriage: Procreation is Important, But Not Primary Some people believe that the primary purpose for marriage is procreation. Others say the primary read for sex is procreation. Regarding the latter position, Genesis 2 emphasizes the “one flesh” of marriage (which includes sex) a whole chapter before Eve conceived a child, which seems to imply sex expressing oneness in relationship more than use for procreation. The “family” is husband and wife; children are secondary and temporary. First Corinthians 7 ties sex to the relationship, saying nothing about children, and indicates that sex is to continue apart from children. Sex is intended for joy and intimacy in marriage. See more in the post.
3. The Secondary Primary Purpose of Marriage: Companionship Everyone who marries does so for a reason, often not realizing that God has purposes for marriage far more important than ours. Living for God’s purposes rather than our own transforms how we view our communication, decision-making, sex, child-rearing, finances, socializing, and relational conflicts. Taking God’s view for our own will change our behaviors, which usually results in a more satisfying relationship with one’s spouse. The pleasure and glory of God is more important that our satisfaction, so I recommend: The Ultimate Purpose of Marriage: Image-Bearing.
2. Visit the Sick – Using Scripture In suffering it is easy to forget to trust God. You know that Scripture can re-focus a sick person’s attention back to the character of God and His love for the sufferer, but you’re just not sure which passages to use. Here are some specific verses that speak to anxiety, discouragement, or a person approaching surgery, and other situations.
1. An Unloved Woman This is the second year in a row that this post made #1. What does Proverbs 30 tells us about a woman who has experienced significant rejection? What is likely to happen if she marries? Is there hope for change?
Thank you for reading.
I wish you a 2020 full of God’s grace and peace!