America’s Need For Biblical Literacy

While America’s evangelical Christians are rightly concerned about the secular worldview’s rejection of biblical Christianity, we ought to give some urgent attention to a problem much closer to home–biblical illiteracy in the church. This scandalous problem is our own, and it’s up to us to fix it.

Americans revere the Bible–but, by and large, they don’t read it. And because they don’t read it, they have become a nation of biblical illiterates. How bad is it? Researchers tell us that it’s worse than most could imagine.

This really is our problem, and it is up to this generation of Christians to reverse course. Recovery starts at home. Parents are to be the first and most important educators of their own children, diligently teaching them the Word of God. [See Deuteronomy 6:4-9.] Parents cannot franchise their responsibility to the congregation, no matter how faithful and biblical it may be. God assigned parents this non-negotiable responsibility, and children must see their Christian parents as teachers and fellow students of God’s Word.


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The Parenting Parable

I regret weighing my son’s worth via a meritocratic scale. I do regret the parenting style I’ve employed—not because I’m too strict or not strict enough (depending on whom you ask) or because sometimes we eat McNuggets for dinner. I regret it because I have put my son at the center of my family’s orbit when he should be alongside us instead. In doing so, I have designated my identity and worth as strictly what I’ve achieved as a parent; I have made it nearly impossible to extend grace to a child who throws fits and says bad words—to see him as existentially valuable.

I want to be the best mother I can be, but perhaps the most efficient way to go about this is to remove my child from the center of my universe. Perhaps then I will allow myself to be a holistic human being; and perhaps then I can grant my son that same freedom.


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Why Parenting For Legalism Will Fail

The answer to misbehavior and sin is not to hover over our little ones, nervously trying to either catch them in sin or find them acting, for once, in good ways so that we can reinforce every positive or negative action, but instead to simply trust God to soften their hearts, and to clean the insides of those little cups, so that then the outsides will be clean also. Whether He does this before they turn all your hairs gray is–I’m sorry to break this to you, my friends–not within your control.

But don’t worry. Instead, believe.

Despite all of our worry, the Gospel is sufficient to replace the dead letter of the Law that we had been teaching, and that many of us had been raised on ourselves. The hearing of the Word is sufficient to raise our children’s souls from the dead, just as it has done for all of the other saints. Your daily attention to the truth is sufficient. Don’t let the simplicity of the Truth trip you up. Pharisees are the ones who like to complicate things, and I think we all have a little bit of that inability to believe that it could possibly be that simple. You don’t need to add anything to the Word–no charts, stickers, badges, records, journals, rewards, or any other kind of proof that the Holy Spirit is working. He just IS. Believe this, and have peace.


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The 10 Commandments Of Parenting

Parenting is one of the greatest joys and responsibilities in this life. Few things produce greater humility or furnish greater rewards. Though I feel inadequate for the task, I love being a Daddy! I continue to receive “on the job training,” but here are a few commandments I long to live by as I continue to labor in this wonderful vineyard called Christian parenting.

1. Thou shall not worship thy children or their future.


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Hey Christian, You’re Not As Likely To Divorce As You Thought You Were

This is a game-changer. Talk about “an old wives’ tale.” You’ve heard it said that 1) 50 percent of all marriages end in divorce; 2) most marriages that do happen to make it are, nonetheless, unhappy, and 3) Christians are just as likely to divorce as non-believers.

Shaunti Feldhahn is a Harvard-trained researcher and author. In her recently released book, “The Good News About Marriage: Debunking Discouraging Myths about Marriage and Divorce,” Feldhahn details groundbreaking findings from an extensive eight-year study on marriage and divorce. Among other things, her research found:

  • The actual divorce rate has never gotten close to 50 percent.
  • Those who attend church regularly have a significantly lower divorce rate than those who don’t.
  • Most marriages are happy.
  • Simple changes make a big difference in most marriage problems.
  • Most remarriages succeed.

“The 50 percent figure came from projections of what researchers thought the divorce rate would become as they watched the divorce numbers rising in the 1970s and early 1980s when states around the nation were passing no-fault divorce laws.”


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Deny Your Children And Take Up Your Cross!

They say, “Moms, because we are women–nay, not mere women but Wise Western Women–we can change the world, but we need to take up our crosses, and deny our children in order to do it.”

Christians, let the World’s women do whatever mental gymnastics they require to convince themselves that charity begins halfway across the world. We have an Example set for us, for all time. Jesus didn’t save his children by leaving them. He saved them by joining them in their muck, their diseases, and finally their deaths. If we want to do real charity, we have to do the same.

But this thoroughly secular idea that we can adequately serve other people without first keeping our own homes in order is a lie, for while we’re off saving the world, Satan is devouring the next generation. How are we going to save Haiti when we can’t even understand the vulnerability of the souls in our very own homes?


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How Islam Will Win The [Demographic] War

A declining fertility rate in our culture is evidence that we have, as a culture, devalued children and family. We have done so to a point that our very future is now in question, though we may not realize it yet. One culture that is going against this trend is the Muslim culture. In countries all around the world, Muslim populations are gradually becoming the majority, no weapons or violence necessary. Muslims will become a dominant force in the world simply by maintaining a strong belief in the power of multi-generational family while the rest of the world squanders its fertility in preference of other short-sighted goals. The changing demographics are a consequence of different values and worldview.


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How To Raise Godly Kids Without Going To Church

According to Scripture, it is the parent’s responsibility to raise up their children and teach them about God, but our modern way of doing church relinquishes these things to 45 minutes on Sunday morning and Wednesday night, in a building with a (generally) controlled environment, and to a person we don’t really know.

Isn’t that crazy?

How did we go from “Train up a child in the way he should go” (Prov 22:6) and “Teach these things to your children … ” (Deut 6:7; 11:19) to asking, “So what did you learn in Sunday school today?” on the drive home from church?


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You Can’t Childproof The World But You Can Worldproof Your Child

My 8 year old looked at me with her deep brown eyes and said, “The world is scary.”

I turned the TV off and wondered how to teach my kids about real love-the kind that makes us pray for our neighbors in the war on terror while shutting out the lure of our anything-goes culture.

It hit close to home. And it made me long for another home. Because I can’t protect my kids from the world we live in.


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Pope Francis Called Our Generation Selfish – What If He’s Right?

Pope Francis recently spoke blasphemy to a generation that is obsessed with self-esteem and self-fulfillment. He said that people who choose not to have children are selfish:

“A society with a greedy generation, that doesn’t want to surround itself with children, that considers them above all worrisome, a weight, a risk, is a depressed society. The choice to not have children is selfish.”

The pope’s statement has people up in arms because it’s true. The fact that millions of people are extremely upset by this proves the truth of the statement.


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Finding Purpose In The Grief Of Miscarriage

I felt close to the suffering Savior who had experienced even more excruciating pain for me, not because he lost a child, but because he gave his all to bring lost children home.

He gives purpose to our suffering (Romans 8:28). My miscarriage didn’t happen in a vacuum. Both my child and I were created in God’s image, designed for his glory. My intentions for my child’s life were not the Lord’s intentions, and my timetable was not his timetable.


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Foster Care Is A Window Into The Gospel

Opening your heart to love any child is risky and requires a loss of self. Opening your heart and home to a foster child may seem especially risky. But in losing ourselves, we gain. We grow in understanding how Jesus loved us and gave himself up for us. In seeking to love sacrificially, we pray others will see a picture of the gospel and be drawn to Christ.


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How Hospitality Hits The Heart

“You all have a place to belong,” she said. “You are a part of each other. In your home is everything a person could want or need—food, friendship, spiritual encouragement, rest, comfort, and fun—it’s all here. I want a place to belong, a people to be a part of, but I never really thought they existed, except in storybooks.”

It was not a beautiful house or organizational systems that spoke to her need. But, it was the heart of our home, the love, the comfort and warmth, the acceptance, the spiritual and intellectual connection that invited her into our haven where she might find refuge from life.


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Sunday Sermon: Children Are An Integral Part Of A Worship Gathering

Rob Rienow explains why children should be involved in the gathering of the saints for worship. Believe it or not, this was actually the norm for millennia. It’s only in the last century or so that we had the genius idea to split families apart and do age-segregated ministry. Let’s examine the fruit of that and compare it to the fruit our ancestors saw as they worshipped together as families.

Click the button below to hear the audio of Rob’s message…


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You Don’t Need A Youth Ministry, You Just Need Families

I believe that one of the essential jobs of the local church is to equip Christian parents to take the lead in spiritually training their children. Passing faith to our kids is not the church’s job – it is ours as parents.

But what about all the unsaved kids who don’t have Christian parents to disciple them?


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Connect With The Father Heart Of God By Caring For The Fatherless

We see in passages like Deuteronomy 10:17-18 and Psalm 68:4-6 that God associates his care for the fatherless as an integral part of his deity and associates his actions of justice with his special love for those who have no father to provide for them. We see in passages like Psalm 82:2-4 and Ezekiel 22:6-7 that God points to Israel’s neglect of the fatherless as one of the main reasons for His judgment upon them. Even the companions of Job, as they are seeking for an answer for the calamity that he is facing, point to his mistreatment of the fatherless as a possible explanation for his situation. (Job 22:7-10).


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The Story Of A Dropbox That Saves Lives

A documentary about a South Korean pastor who is credited with saving countless abandoned babies who might have otherwise have died abandoned on the streets is set to open in theaters nationwide early next Spring.

“The Dropbox” tells the story of Lee Jong-rak, who in 2009, constructed a “heated bin lodged in a wall that allows mothers to deposit their children without being seen.” The effort to save South Korea’s “unwanted” children sprung out of Jong-rak’s own experience as his son, Eun-man, was born with cerebral palsy, leaving him bedridden.


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Ferguson Is About The Failure Of Fathers & Families

At the heart of the Brown case was the responsibility of parents to train their children rightly. “If the parents don’t turn back to God, love Him with all their heart, soul and might, get married, and by good example guide their children in the right way to go, it’s never going to get better, because that is the order of God,” Peterson continued. “According to the Scriptures, God advised us to train our children up in the right way to go, and when you do, you don’t have to deal with this stuff when they go out into the world.”


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Skewed Views Of Physical Adoption Lead To Skewed Views Of Spiritual Adoption

When I hear that phrase “a child of your own” separating the children under my roof from the one born from my womb, and my heart saddens at the misunderstanding of this wild-love that’s been birthed within my home among children who wear another mama’s skin, I can’t help but think of him.

He calls me “his own” when the world and my heart wants to label me forever severed.

Adoption is his great declaration.


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Why Women Must Keep The Standards High When Looking For A Husband

Porn is so prevalent, according to Regnerus, that if all Christian women left their boyfriends or turned down suitors based on their browser histories, marriage and the future of the church would be doomed. From his article, it’s easy for readers to conclude: Marriage is so important that we may need to start rethinking the idea of pornography as a deal-breaker.

As an unmarried woman, I fall into the target audience for such an argument. Honestly, there’s a lot about being 39 and single that I don’t like. But as one of my friends said when discussing Regnerus’s piece, he’s asking us to capitulate to a worldview that says pornography gets to make the rules, and we just have to live with it. And there’s even less to like about that.


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How Teenagers Shaped History

“Teens are just that way! It’s who they are.”

Well, history is there to prove you wrong. It may be who they are, but it is NOT who they are meant to be.  Teens can be the most energetic, the most passionate, the most powerful people group in the Body of Christ. And Satan knows it.

I’m done watching kids go over the edge. I’m done watching hearts break. I’m done playing tea party in a war zone. Parents, pray for your kids! The Enemy is after them, not just so he can get to them, but so he can get to you!


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Why The Young And The Restless Should Get Married And Make Babies

You won’t miraculously turn into a better person because you got married and had kids, obviously. But, at their essence, families are built and held together through sacrificial love, and this is something that can — if you give yourself over to it — sanctify you and bring you closer to God.

When you pour your energies and efforts into serving and loving your spouse, raising your children, and guiding your family, you’ll find that, inevitably, you grow and mature in the process.


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Why Is Being Fruitful And Multiplying So Counter-Cultural?

There is a general perception that the only thing keeping every woman of childbearing age from having fourteen children, is some method of family planning. But the facts really don’t support that perception.

In general, our society is worried about exactly the wrong thing. We are worried about getting pregnant. We are told we should fear having children too soon. We are told we should fear having too many children. We are told it’s the thing that will ruin our lives. That’s what everyone says. It’s a lie!
The true heartbreak lies in infertility, in subfertility. But “they” won’t tell you that.


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Reflections On The Youth Ministry Trap

Looking back on my many years in youth ministry, I see that I was working so hard to win the hearts of students to the youth group. I want the youth group to be the place where they found their connection, community, and identity. What I should have done was sought to win their hearts to their families and to our entire church. My mission should have been to help them find their connection, community, and identity at home and with our entire church family, not only with their peers.


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Sunday Sermon: Your Family & God’s Plan, Part 2

Dr. Rob Rienow shows how the first command to humans to be fruitful and multiply is still in effect. The primary means by which this happens is through families passing on faith from generation to generation. The Great Commission is really a recapitulation of this original mission and it is also accomplished primarily by the same means: Multi-generational faithfulness.

Note: This sermon is part 2 of another sermon that was previously posted here.


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What Happens When We Live In A Fatherless World?

Father in our world is absent, first because he is gone all day at work, out of the sight of his children, and second because society marginalizes and mocks his role in the family. Now, it’s not that we can go back to a pre-industrial lifestyle. The life of the parents, father included, took place before the eyes of the children. Further, what he contributed was physically and emotionally was seen as necessary. No important aspect of the adult life would have taken place outside of the children’s sight.


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Understand The Difference Between Modern Family And Biblical Family

In honor of Throwback Thursday, we are remembering a video post in which Jeremy Pryor explains how the Bible’s view of family collides with modern Western views of family. The insightful comparisons and contrasts between these two models of family shed a very helpful light on the issue of family and what we can do to correct some of the problems families face today.


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5 Things That Bring Unity To The Church

I’ve come to believe that instead of being a bunch of churches separated by music style or building, God sees one bride and one city church.

In my experience, we are a divided, fighting, graceless, defensive mess. If your facebook news feed is anything like mine you cannot ignore the Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill Church controversy that has everyone choosing sides. I do not believe that we should forsake truth or stop defending the oppressed for the sake of unity, but it is my belief that there is a deep problem that exists in our city that is larger than a single worship center or preacher. And unless we seek radical change, the disunity will continue for the Church of Seattle.


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A Man’s Legacy Is Bound Up With His Son-In-Law

Every man wants to know that their life will matter. Every man wants to leave a legacy when they are gone. This is why it matters how involved you are in your kids lives and what you teach them. When your daughter marries a man, your legacy will be determined by him.

Now, think about how men are involved in who their daughter marries.

They often know very little about the man who marries his daughter. They only know that their daughter likes him, he claims to be a Christian and he came to ask permission for her hand. What a guy.

Sadly, this is typical and seen as a good thing and not even close to be able to know if he is worthy of your daughter.


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Recovering From The Loss Of A Child

A friend of mine had a stillborn daughter a few years ago. His process of recovering from that devastating ordeal was one of the most best examples I have ever seen of how a disciple of Jesus can grieve well. Most of us do not know how to grieve well. Many people have been through this ordeal, or something like it, and yet they remain silent or feel alone in their pain. This story can help you feel less alone and see the value of speaking about your grief.

This is part 1 of a multi-part account of his journey through incredible grief. The button below will take you to part 1, and then you can browse to other chapters of the story from there. Here’s a link to part 2.

Why did this happen? Medically speaking, we don’t know and probably never will know this side of the resurrection. It is hard not knowing what caused this. But the medical questions really aren’t the most difficult ones. There are much bigger questions.

The thing that sustained us wasn’t answers. The thing that held us up were truths regarding our God. He is a good God. He works good through horrible things. He is loving Father. He cares for His children in a way that a human father is unable. He gives and He takes away. And He does everything for His glory and our good.


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3 Ways Men Kill Their Marriages And What To Do About It

I’ve seen it first hand in multiple couples. Put them in a group of people and they’ll talk a good talk, but put them in a room together and the communication train de-rails almost immediately. He doesn’t want to say anything to offend her and she is waiting for him to say the wrong thing.

What happens next?

He disengages and resorts to one of the following methods of passivity.


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If Motherhood Isn’t Enough Then What Will Be?

When you’re sacrificing your life for someone else, you desperately need to know that it’s worth it. Do we really need to convince moms that motherhood can’t possibly be enough – that they’re wasting their lives if they give it for their children?

Those years I invested at home were not wasted. They formed my children – and they also formed me. In fact, I wouldn’t be effective in ministry today had I not submitted to what God was doing in those difficult, but God-glorifying days of young motherhood.


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What Is A Covenant Family?

The term “covenant family” may be new to many Christians. While my passion for this subject originated in being introduced to the biblical multi-generational family, I learned over time that the multi-generational aspect of the biblical family is rooted in its covenantal nature. Covenant families, by biblical definition, have a component of succession, or continuity. In other words, biblical families are multi-generational precisely because they are covenantal.

There is a whole project underway to offer Christians training in recovering the lost vision of multi-generational families. Read more about the ideas and resources for this training…


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Jesus Loved Children Not Because They Are Cute But Because They Are Strategic

Jesus understood the Great Commission begins with the souls of the little ones. The Great Commission is not just personal, but multi-generational. The disciples were standing in the way of parents and grandparents, and Jesus quickly put an end to it. Jesus set the example for every believer, regardless of their family situation, to intentionally nurture faith in children, and participate in God’s multi-generational Great Commission.


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Something To Consider Before Sterilizing Yourself

While the contemporary ability to determine one’s family size is heralded as a mark of Western progress, that freedom carries with it moral and spiritual responsibility. I see the value in coming alongside couples in search of godly wisdom in sharing stories and being willing to explore in prayer what God may be asking of them.



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One Family’s Story Of How They Stay On Mission Together As A Team

Ed and Mel Zwyghuizen have three children—Gabe (19), Christian (17), and Greta (15). Together, they are known as Team Z.

We always knew we wanted to invite our kids to participate in God’s big story for the world, but as young parents, we didn’t necessarily know how. We try to be missional. We don’t want to live just for ourselves, but for others, too. We want to be an outward-facing family. One way we do this is by inviting others to join us at our family table.


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Your Child Is A Sinner, This I Know, For The Bible Tells Me So

Sure, there are some “bad apples” out there, but your cute little Johnny is an angel, I’m sure. The bad doctrine of good people (see next post) doesn’t apply to your saintly little progeny, right? After all, how could there be a sinful heart behind that incredibly adorable smile?

We have to reckon with the truth of Scripture on this topic and be prepared to parent accordingly…


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10 Scriptures For Strengthening Relationships

It seems we reserve our unkindest words, do our most thoughtless deeds, are the most mean to those who mean the most to us. And because those close to use care  more about what we say and think, those words and actions hurt more deeply. It’s a double whammy.

Because the stakes are so high, we must ensure that our communications not only stay away from the negative, but that they lead everyone to the positive. Here are ten passages of Scripture that can be very helpful in building and maintaining strong relationships.


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When Mom Needs To Be The Spiritual Leader

The biblical vision of a godly man leading his wife and children simply was not a reality in my house. Given that reality, God called and used my mother to be the primary spiritual shepherd in my life, and I am forever grateful to her.

I have been in two families with spiritually passive men, the home I grew up in, and then my own home for the first ten years of our marriage. I was the passive man. Functionally, my wife was the spiritual leader, because I was sinfully overcommitted to my work at church.


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Casting Vision For Multi-Generational Legacy

God calls me to do all in my power to impress the hearts of my children with a love for Him and to teach them God’s Word. My mission to “make disciples” begins with the souls of the children God has entrusted to me. Central to my disciple-making mission with my children is to equip them and prepare them to lead my grandchildren (who have yet to be born) to Jesus, and that they in turn would tell my great-grandchildren.



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Refuting The “Price Tag On Parenthood” Lie

Parenthood isn’t cheap. It costs us everything we have sometimes, doesn’t it? But it is free! And we do ourselves no favor when we encourage others to view it as a merely financial transaction. To assign a dollar value to what we give daily as parents only cheapens the relationship. Note: The video above is an example of the kind of messaging that the author of the article below is taking to task.

The article linked below appears on a mommy blog and speaks primarily to moms, but read for the principles and apply them to dads as well, especially as we head into Father’s Day this weekend.



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How Do Those Freakishly Large Families Afford So Many Kids?

We have heard it many, many times: “You have EIGHT kids?! How do you afford it?”  Others add comments about how they can’t afford the 2 or 3 they have.  Many times people who say this really mean they can’t have a large family AND the high standard of living they desire.  I’m going to share 8 tips that helped us afford a large family, as well as learn to trust God.




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What Biblical Genealogies Can Teach Us About Family

All the genealogies that we find throughout the Old Testament and at the beginning of the Gospels of Matthew and Luke tell us about something God values highly. They emphasize the power of the connection between generations and of God’s plan to advance His Kingdom through the generations.

You are not alone in this world. You were never meant to be alone. Faith is supposed to come to us through a long line of men and women who know God and love Him.



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Sunday Sermon: How The Bible Critiques Western Views Of Family

Jeremy Pryor offers a compelling contrast between western views of family and the biblical view of family. The insights he offers here will be extremely valuable to anyone who is looking to strengthen their family culture but can’t find much inspiration for that from American culture. The Bible has a great deal to say about family, but the lenses through which we read the bible as 21st century Americans often prohibit us from seeing the vision for family that is given in Scripture. This sermon helps add clarity so that we can catch the Bible’s vision for family. Let us know what you think in the comments below. (more…)

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Drop What You Are Doing And Read Visionary Parenting By Rob Rienow Right Now!

Visionary Family is running a sale on its ebooks this week. You can download several titles for 99 cents each. I took them up on this great offer and started reading Visionary Family by Rob Rienow. I’m about half way through it and I have found it to be a tremendous encouragement. It is an excellent complement to today’s Sunday Sermon post (see next post). The attention to Scripture in order to see God’s vision for family is inspiring. We’ll try to bring you a full book review soon. In the meantime, go download this great little book and get to reading.



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A Journey Home

When calling his disciples, Jesus told them to drop their nets and follow him. The Waller family took that same call very seriously. This documentary follows a family as they leave behind the comforts of a stable job and home in favor of an agrarian lifestyle in rural Tennessee. The story of the Waller family is inspiring as disciples of Jesus ask what it looks like to respond with faith to his call.


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The Family That Stories Together Stays Together

Later, my dad called me to his bedside. There was a palpable sense of fear I couldn’t remember hearing before.

“Our family’s falling apart,” he said.

“No it’s not,” I said instinctively. “It’s stronger than ever.”

But lying in bed afterward, I began to wonder: Was he right? What is the secret sauce that holds a family together? What are the ingredients that make some families effective, resilient, happy?



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How Youth Groups Make Atheists And What To Do About It

A new study might reveal why a majority of Christian teens abandon their faith upon high school graduation. Some time ago, Christian pollster George Barna documented that 61 percent of today’s 20-somethings who had been churched at one point during their teen years are now spiritually disengaged. They do not attend church, read their Bible or pray.

According to a new five-week, three-question national survey sponsored by the National Center for Family-Integrated Churches (NCFIC), the youth group itself is the problem.



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Life Well Spent

My grandfather has no intention of ending his life with closed fists. His hands will be open and they will be empty. His accounts are in order. His seed is sown. His hoard is elsewhere, in the faces at his feet, and in the hundreds and thousands of stories his own story has touched and will continue to shape.

Drink your wine. Laugh from your gut. Burden your moments with thankfulness. Be as empty as you can be when that clock winds down. Spend your life. And if time is a river, may you leave a wake.



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Raising Arrow Children

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate (Psalm 127:3–5).

Notice what the psalmist says here: Children are a heritage, a reward. But then the first metaphor is jarring, and perhaps not what we were expecting. Instead of saying that they are like a row of stuffed bunnies in a well-decorated crib, he says that children from the Lord are like a fistful of arrows. Children are arrows for the fist, and even more arrows for the quiver. For what occasion? Target practice? Costume parties?



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The Value Of Children

Children are a heritage from the Lord,
offspring a reward from him. – Ps 127:3

The view that we are blessed if we can afford children is completely opposite of the biblical view that children ARE blessing.  Children don’t drain our wealth, children ARE our wealth!  Don’t believe me?  Read the Old Testament.  In the Old Testament, offspring was the highest form of blessing God bestowed on the nations He blessed.  They were greatly desired and valued because they were the future.



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The Curse Of Hating Children

I understand the mindset of the person who would wish to avoid fatherhood, for I myself thought that way at the time I got married (10 years ago). I would read the Scriptures that spoke of children as a blessing, and I simply did not believe them. Every child I knew at the time was loud, annoying, disobedient, and a hindrance to the affairs of adults. Why would I ever want that? In other words, I believed the cultural story about the pursuit of self-fulfillment far more strongly than I believed the words of Scripture.



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21 Rules For A Peaceful Home

The 21 Rules of This House cover just about every situation common to young children and teens. They were developed over 30 years ago to help my wife and me be more consistent in what we required of our children as members of our household.

Click below to read the 21 rules and ask yourself if you think your home would be more peaceful if these rules were consistently applied to your home environment.



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How To Train Kids To Handle Evil

David Reaves offers six helpful insights about how parents can use the portrayal of evil in media as an opportunity to train their children how to respond to evil. Sticking our heads in the sand and pretending like evil doesn’t exist hasn’t proven to be a very successful training strategy. So, how do we set our kids up for success in confronting evil?



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Birth, Death, And The Moments In Between

It’s been less than two weeks since my baby girl Luca Gold came into the world, laying warm against my chest for the greatest and most horrific 40 minutes I’ve ever experienced. As the midwife took her stethoscope away from Goldie’s tiny chest for the last time, lowering her eyes to the ground and shaking her head, our nine month anticipation of the sounds of life quickly vanished into the haunting silence of death.


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Restoration Through Repentance

With most of our PARENTS we are somewhat burdened and we enjoy complaining about our parents’ faults, barely showing love at all.  We have lost hope for growing together and we’ve pretty much given up on seeing these relationships flourish.  We don’t necessarily believe this is best, but ultimately we’re either too lazy or apathetic to do anything else.  We have enough community and “family” from other friends that the time and energy needed to grow relationally and on mission with our biological family isn’t worth it.

I propose that this is weak, immature, and selfish.



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On Mission With Your Children

Clearly, going and making disciples must be a high priority for all who follow Jesus. Some families are called to go to the nations, to proclaim the gospel among those who have not had a chance to hear. Their stories are certainly inspiring, and hopefully many more families will join them. However, not everyone will respond to this call to make disciples by going abroad.



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If It Hurts, Embrace It

Pushing ourselves to emotional, physical, and spiritual brinks provides us with increased strength and knowledge of the reality of our current beliefs and what we are fit to accomplish. My wife did more than either of us originally wanted her to or expected her capable of, and she showed herself to be a hero of mine. Our son’s life is the memorial of his mother’s strength.



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Let Them Come Home

John Piper’s son offers practical advice for families with wayward children based on his own experience as a wayward child.

In a recent interview, John Piper recounts the painful events surrounding the excommunication of his 19 year old son, Abraham.

The night after that excommunication, I called him at 10:00 and said, “Abraham, you knew what was coming.”



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A Path Through The Parenting Maze

Among the perks of having babies in the 1980′s, 1990′s and 2000′s is that your kids’ friends’ parents– your friends– span many decades as well.  Mom-friends who were rearing their last-born when I was fearfully raising my first grew up during FDR’s administration; some friends I’ve met through my 8-year-old entered the world while Reagan served. Consequently, I’ve been exposed to quite a number of parenting styles.



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