Archive | Linkable RSS feed for this section

When someone says they are personally against abortion, but think it should remain legal…

20 Nov

Stand to Reason:

“I was with Greg at a Ligonier conference in Orlando once, and was talking to a man who came up to our display table. He saw some of our pro-life resources and announced that he personally believed that abortion was wrong, but he didn’t believe that we should prohibit other people who thought differently about the issue from getting abortions. He thought it ought to be legal even though he personally thought it was wrong. This is the favorite choice of religious politicians who are pro-choice.

If somebody makes that kind of statement, there is always a tactic you employ. You ask a question. When they say, I’m personally against abortion but I don’t think other people should be prohibited from having abortions, you ask, “Why are you personally against abortion? I understand that you don’t think it’s right and don’t want to force your views on others, but why is it that you think abortion is wrong?”

It’s a very fair question. You will consistently get basically the same answer, the answer that the gentleman gave Greg.

He said, I think abortion is wrong because it takes the life of an innocent human child, but that is just my personal view.

Greg said, Okay, I think I understand your view, but let me just repeat it back to you and you tell me if I’ve got it right. You think abortion kills an innocent human child, but you think women should be legally allowed to do that.

He said, Well, when you put it that way….

Greg answered, Put it what way? That’s your view you told me. If I’ve misunderstood you, please let me know, but I thought that’s what I actually heard you say. It doesn’t sound so good coming back at you, does it?

The man had confused his own moral view of the unborn with one of the common objections: We can’t force our moral view on someone who disagrees. That may be true in some circumstances, but it really doesn’t come into play when a baby’s life is at stake.”

Read the rest

Together for Adoption South Africa

26 Oct

We can’t wait for this conference!

Ponte Towers

24 Oct

This is a short documentary about a famous landmark in Johannesburg. It is also the place where one of our friends was shot and left for dead. God used that moment in his life however to transform him. And now, he’s a pastor and looking to go back to Malawi to plant a Bible preaching church! Awesome.

Getting Angry at the Right People

3 Oct

Wow.

I am glad to have read this and this.

It is a good reminder of how fundamentally flawed we all our and our great need of a Savior.

It is also an urgent warning to carefully and ruthlessly evaluate our own lives to see if we are really living in ways that match up with the gospel.

I think the person who looks back at the Puritans and wonders how they could have done this probably doesn’t know themselves as well as they think. We are all experts in self-deception and masters of rationalization. These stories are not just old news from a different era. (Just recently someone was telling me the Bible teaching church they were visiting was “old” South Africa. Whether it is true or not, it is how they felt.) And I am sure they are not alone. There are many of us who are sitting and listening to good preaching or even maybe doing good preaching who are still treating people in ways that are far below God’s standards and the anger we feel when we hear stories like these will be best directed at ourselves instead of people who died hundreds of years ago.

Perhaps that anger will stop us from using the fact that we listen to good preaching as an excuse for poor living and to use the extra energy our anger gives us to do the hard work of breaking down our own rationalizations for attitudes and behaviour that contradict the good news of Jesus Christ.

Support Systems

7 Aug

We are really enjoying meeting once a month with a group of young students and pastors from around Pretoria. This article explains why we think it is an important priority!

The Number One Failure of Pastors

“The four-year-old who says, “I can do it by myself” has a lot in common with the typical pastor.

Pastors are notorious for their lone ranger approach to ministry. It’s what I call the number one failure of 90 percent of pastors. They prefer to go it alone.”

Read the rest…

This and that…

20 Jun

One of the greatest joys God gives us in life, (and He gives us so many!) is working together with godly, humble friends. He’s put some amazing people in our lives and we are forever thankful! I always figure that God must have known that I need a lot of help, so He stoops down and sends such fantastic people into our lives. Working with such sweet people keeps you humble and prayerful (I hope!) because I just don’t want to mess it up with my selfishness. I feel such a responsibility before God to do everything I can to help them succeed.

Anyway, I thought I could introduce you to a couple of our new friends who have recently come to join us or are on their way. You can find out more about what God’s doing in their lives and what’s happening here in South Africa by following their blogs!

Donovan and Heather Drew: The Drews News
Randy and Susan Clark: The Clarks Following Him
Rachael Lee (an intern this summer): Journaling Africa

And here’s a link to a good friend who has been working with us since the beginning of Living Hope!

Alan Lester: Grace Unlimited

I also wanted to share with you the link to 1Hope and then also ask you to be praying for a conference that we are working on putting together to promote a biblical view of adoption here in South Africa. (Man, we are excited about this!)

1Hope
Together for Adoption South Africa

Plus, we are going away for a couple of weeks so I don’t imagine there will be much updating to the blog. But if you remember please pray for us. We feel a greater and greater sense of dependency on Christ every day.

Linkable

18 Apr

Paul Tripp, The Recipe for a Successful Pastor

“A pastor’s ministry is never just shaped by his experience, knowledge, and skill. It is also always shaped by the true condition of his heart. In fact, if his heart is not in the right place, knowledge and skill can make him dangerous.

Pastors often struggle to find living, humble, needy, celebratory, worshipful, meditative communion with Christ. It is as if Jesus has left the building. There is all kinds of ministry knowledge and skill, but it seems divorced from a living communion with a living and ever-present Christ. All this activity, knowledge, and skill seems to be fueled by something else. Ministry becomes shockingly impersonal. Then it’s about theological content, exegetical rightness, ecclesiastical commitments, and institutional advancement…”

Paul Taugtes, Work Backwards

“One of the most effective counseling methods I know of is to work backwards from where I am now to where I once was, from where my thinking has been renewed to where it went awry. This is not only effective for self-counseling, but also for counseling one another. We need to help each other see what choices and/or thinking processes are now being refined and used by God to sanctify us and grow our faith…”

You Need a Budget

We have had a budget for years now, but we did not really have a simple way of tracking how we were doing keeping that budget. I know. Not smart. Amazing though how God takes care of us. But we began using this program recently and it’s made a tremendous impact. It’s actually helped me in a number of ways beyond simple budgeting as well. It’s reminded me of the importance of accountability, tracking progress and the power of small, incremental changes over an extended period of time. For more information, Tim Challies provides a more extended review.