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Showing posts from July, 2010

15 questions for your marriage

Sometimes we need a little help communicating with our spouse effectively. How about setting aside a night and answering these 15 questions together? Here's the full postby Justin Taylor:

In the latest Journal of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood Rob Lister has a good article filled with practical suggestions for married couples to use in evaluating their marriage. The whole thing is worth reading for counsel on how and when to do this.
Below are the 15 questions:
On a scale of 1-10, give your overall assessment of our marriage in the past six months. To be sure, this is a very broad and subjective item, but I have found it helpful to open the conversation with an item of this kind of breadth, because it helps to prime the pump. Obviously, you won’t hit on a ton of specifics with this one—that’s what the rest of the questions are for—but I have been truly amazed at just how much discussion this assessment alone can generate, as various issues come to mind. From there…

Blessed are the Broken and Gentle

Many thanks to Bret Capranica for filling the pulpit and feeding our flock the two weeks my family was on vacation.

I heard a lot of positive feedback from his sermons. His second week, Bret preached an entire message on one verse. One person remarked, "he went deep, but it didn't feel deep." I can think of no greater compliment. What a gift to plumb the depths of God's Word without becoming confusing and esoteric in the process.

Here are links to his two messages, both taken from the Sermon on the Mount. I am looking forward to listening to them myself!

Values of the Ultimately Satisfied: Brokenness 
(Matt. 5:1-3)

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Values of the Ultimately Satisfied:Gentleness 
(Matt. 5:5)

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SBC Open Forum in Los Angeles this Thursday

I and the other officers of the California Southern Baptist Convention will be hosting another Open Forum this Thursday, July 22, to discuss the future of our convention. This meeting will be held from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm at First Baptist Church of Beverly Hills, 9025 Cynthia St., West Hollywood, CA 90069.

These forums are very open-ended and seek to address questions such as "How can we get young people more involved?" "How can we cooperate more effectively as local churches?" and "What will the Great Commission Resurgence mean for us?"

This is the third of five forums being hosted across the state this year. I have found them to be a valuable time to network with other pastors and to brainstorm about the future of our state convention. We welcome the input and participation by pastors and SBC leaders in the area. Hope to see you there.

To learn about our past meetings, click the links below:
Recap of SBC open forum in San DiegoRecap of SBC open forum …

Financial mistakes by young families

Every pre-marital counseling course should include some basic advice on family finances. I'm very grateful Natalie and I were required to read the Complete Financial Guide for Young Couples, which helped us talk through some important issues, set up an early budget, and avoid many pitfalls.

A recent article by might also be helpful. They list six common financial mistakes made by young families:
Carrying too much debtOperating without a budgetFailing to begin planning for retirementInadequate life and disability insuranceNot preparing for college tuitionNo rainy day fund
Even if you've been married for years and have made some costly mistakes, it's never too late to begin heading in the right direction. You can read the whole article here.

No Greater Love movie - July 30

First Southern Baptist invites the public to a free showing of the movie No Greater Love at 7 PM on Friday, July 30. Free concessions will be served, and free child care will be provided for preschool children. It would make a great date night or family night out.

No Greater Love is the dramatic story of faith, forgiveness, and the sovereignty of God. Jeff and Heather were the "lucky ones." Best friends from childhood, high school sweethearts, and married by 22. After the birth of their only child, however, Heather fell into an uncontrollable depression. Hopelessly lost, she did the unthinkable...she abandoned her husband and infant son – and vanished. Now, ten years later, Jeff’s world is dramatically rocked when Heather shockingly reappears in the most unusual place.

Dennis Rainey, host of Family Life Today, calls this movie “a compelling story that powerfully reminds us that love is always the right choice.” The message of the gospel is clearly presented as well. We look …

A unique revolution

"Our Declaration of Independence has been copied by emerging nations around the globe, its themes adopted in places many of us have never heard of. Here in this land, for the first time, it was decided that man is born with certain God-given rights. We the people declared that government is created by the people for their own convenience. Government has no power except those voluntarily granted it by the people. There have been revolutions before and since ours, revolutions that simply exchanged one set of rulers for another. Ours was a philosophical revolution that changed the very concept of government" -- Ronald Reagan

Happy Independence Day!