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Posts Tagged ‘the gospel coalition’

The Ruckus caught in the act of ornery. This is from last night after I gave up and put a diaper back on this kid.

Call me sick and twisted, but I love jr. high kids. Always have, and probably always will. I even took my bend and went to college to be jr. high teacher. You might call it immaturity, but I’m going to go ahead and just call it the way God made me. Maybe God was just preparing me to raise Solomon.

If you get grossed out easy (say with farts, poop, and the like), you may just want to pass this story on and check out the link at the bottom of this post. Proceed only if you are brave or crazy like me, but I just had to share this story.

Solomon is a man’s man or a boy’s boy or however you want to get around to it. He challenges my seemingly endless energy, and on most days trumps it. Last night as my head was landing full force into my pillow (as it has every night since this little booger went mobile at 5 MONTHS!), I barely remember saying to David, “If Solomon was a WWF wrestler his name would for sure be ‘The Ruckus’.” I sort of remember David saying something about a tornado, but he didn’t quite beat my eyelids.

David spent last week leading a team from Redeemer down to Juarez, Mexico to build a house with Casas Por Cristo. Solomon (who with the addition of about 6 cans of baby food a day has shown no slow down towards weaning) and I stayed back in Amarillo to deal with the sprout of his first FOUR teeth at once. It was especially hot last week (the hottest day was 107), and the heat flared up The Ruckus’ eczema. This is where the story begins.

David and the team made it home, but not without bringing home the annual Mexico stomach bug. By Monday morning I was worried about both my boys. I made a call to the pediatrician to see if there was anything more I could do for Solomon’s rash. Solomon must have known what she said because as we were on the phone he decided to take off the diaper he was pooping in. This pretty much set the bar for the day.

So on doctor’s orders I removed Solomon’s diaper so he could get some air. I carefully placed a mattress pad in the pack-and-play and hoped for the best. He had only been in there a few minutes when I hear a noise from our corgi, Calvin. I turned around to see Solomon standing in the pack-and-play, back arched, pointing a stream down the hall that ended on Calvin’s head.

This is Calvin by the way.

Calvin was obviously horrified. He was looking at me like, “Are you kidding me!”. I sprung into action – towels, wipes, antibacterial wipes. My hysterical laughter came to an abrupt halt as I rounded the corner, arms full, back at the pack-and-play. What I saw next can only be described as little round nuggets covering the mattress pad. The Ruckus, who looked very proud I might add, was taking the time to meticulously squish each nugget between his toes. Obviously he was trying to do the most helpful thing here.

It was quite a stinky mess, and the smell of course only furthered my poor husband’s condition. I was pretty sure he got every last nugget that is until this morning when I found a very tricky hidden one. I haven’t had laughed that hard in a long time, although I’m not sure David and Calvin found it quite as funny in the moment.

When I finally got things cleaned up and got a chance to rest, I treated myself to some blog reading and came across this. It was exactly what I needed to read. And after you now read this gross jr. high humored story, you may need something a little more Godly to read too! HA! Moms of all little ones, enjoy this precious blog, “Dear Stay At Home Mom…” by Trevin Wax, and every second of today with your precious little ones.

It’s an awesome ride!
KR 🙂

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Great Blog Post for all women to read! Beware Romantic Pornography from the Gospel Coalition website and written by Betsy Hart.

Check it out and let me know what you think!

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Why the Gospel Still Matters to Christians: Christian Religion Without the Gospel

The Christian religion without the Gospel message is no more than self-help.

There are so many things from the Christian message and the Bible that can help your life. There are so many great stories that can apply to your life. There are so many inspiring things that boost your faith and get you excited. It’s great advice. And again, great advice is not wrong.

What makes it wrong is when we make it “most important” or central to our faith and lives. It’s easy to the Bible just a book about self-help, advice, behavior modification, and feel good stories. It’s good for your head, but its bad for your heart.

I remember much of life listening to sermons and reading my Bible, simply to pull out the concepts and ideas that would make me a better Christian. I’d open up my Bible in the morning looking for that verse from God that would get me through the day. God wasn’t displeased with that, but where was my heart? Christianity was about me.

Here’s where we need to make a shift:

The Gospel of Jesus Christ is not about the ideas and advice of Christianity making you a better person. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is about intimately opening your heart and faith up to Jesus Christ and allowing is grace and love to make you a completely new person.

I love what the Westminster Catechism says:

“1. What is the chief end of man?
The chief end of man is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.”

Practically how to not let my Christian religion become self-help:

1. Realize your existence is not about you.

2. Realize Christianity is not a life-coping mechanism. It is worship and closeness with Jesus Christ, and from that place you do what you do.

3. Realize the Bible is not about you. In fact, the Bible is story after story of the exact same story. God longing to love His people. God redeeming His people out of love through grace. Jesus is in every single story.

4. Find a way to make your story on this earth about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, not about you.

Meditation:

2 Corinthians 5:11-21
” Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others. But what we are is known to God, and I hope it is known also to your conscience. We are not commending ourselves to you again but giving you cause to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast about outward appearance and not about what is in the heart. For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised. From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”

KR:)

Next Mini-blog: Church Without the Gospel.

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A couple months ago, I wrote two highly controversial and highly view blogs about sex before marriage. At the end of “Follow-Up: Why Sex Before Marriage Devalues Women,” I made the following statement:

“Finally, despite your experience or what you have seen, I promise you a healthy, redemptive marriage is possible. It’s not easy. It takes a lot of work. But I promise you it’s worth it. And for some of you, you need that light at the end of the tunnel.”.

It is only through a core belief in Jesus Christ that we have hope for this life. Hope that won’t disappoint. Motivation for everything we do. And a knowledge of who we are, outside of this that are failing and fading.

Marriage as an institution is failing. More people are getting divorced than staying together. More people are getting divorce than ever in the history of the world.

But there is a type of marriage that works. It’s what I like to call, Redemptive Marriage.

Redemptive Marriage is….

A movement in Jesus: It comes from a person who draws their life from the love, acceptence, and sacrifice of Jesus.
An action for Jesus: The act is done as worship to Jesus for what He has done, not for self pleasure or comfort.
A display of everything Jesus did for us: It mimics the work Jesus did.
A healthy marriage: It is healthy. It isn’t patriarchal, demeaning, entrapping, or abusive. It’s equal and healthy for both sides.

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
11 Qualities of Redemptive Marriage: (according to Kate Ritchie)

1. Mutual Sacrifice
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.”

2. Mutual Forgiveness
So much of marriage is forgiveness. A good marriage forgives well.

3. Mutual Repentance
In my opinion, one of the biggest tests in marriage is how well you repent. Before you are married, hidden sins and issues in your heart are just that…hidden. But marriage is like staring at yourself in a florescent lighted mirror every day. Every day is a decision to stay in the dark and withdraw. Or draw close to God and your spouse by changing your ways.

4. Mutual Love
True love can only come from true love. Jesus Christ has loved each of us unconditionally. Without a knowledge and belief in His unbelievably, amazing love, you will try and use your spouse’s love to get something in return. When two people are filled with the knowledge of the love of God, they can love each other…with no strings attached.

Ephesians 5:1-2 “Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

5. Mutual Respect
In marriage, men and women’s roles are different, yet equal in value. The Bible calls women to love men in the way that they receive it best. Men are called to love their wives to the point of death. Marriage is never about the servanthood of one and the rule of another.

6. Mutual Vulnerability
Without vulnerability, intimacy is impossible.

7. Mutual Determination
Determination to faithfulness, commitment, intimacy, and love.

8. Mutual Meekness
Matthew 5:5 says, “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.” The word meek is often associated with a weak or spineless kind of person. But to be truly meek is to think of another’s desires of well-being above your own. When two people think of the other’s interests before even their own, it creates a peaceful and joyful marriage.

9. Mutual Faithfulness
Faithfulness of body, mind, and heart. Faithfulness is commitment, loyalty, truthfulness, reliability, trustworthiness, true, and devoted. The way Christ has been faithful to us throughout all of time. In Jesus Christ, it is possible and a beautiful display of His love.

Psalm 85:10 “Steadfast love and faithfulness meet; righteousness and peace kiss each other.”

10. Mutual Fight
Not fight against each other, but promise to fight for each other. Redemptive marriage means the world is never against you, because there is one person that is always for you and for your marriage, your spouse. In the same way that Jesus paid the ultimate price and ultimately will fight the final fight, you can display this kind of amazing love for your spouse in this area.

11. Mutual Covenant
(The following video is an excellent explanation of this point!)
A covenant is a specific kind of promise. A contract is another binding agreement that we have in our culture. A contract is temporary and breakable, made with self-protection in mind, and is about getting. A covenant is about what you can give of yourself to another, it is seen as unbreakable and lasting, and is about self-sacrificial love. Marriage is a covenant.

Piper, Carson, and Keller on Sustaining the Covenant of Marital Love from The Gospel Coalition on Vimeo.

Amazing video by Pastors John Piper, Tim Keller, and D.A. Carson on the covenant of marriage. Three pastors that I highly respect.

Here is a wonderful sermon by a wonderful man. It’s called “Redeeming Marriage.”

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