Best of the Week for March 13

In Best of the Week we link to a handful of the best articles, videos, books, etc. that we have come across in the last week. We hope this will point you to some of the right places and give you gospel-rich tools and thoughts for life and mission.

What Does The Shack Really Teach? Lies We Believe About God Tells Us

“In Lies We Believe About God, we see Paul Young [author of The Shack] apart from the subjectivity of narrative. And as he proclaims what he denies and affirms, he outs himself as beyond the bounds of Christian orthodoxy.”

Paul Young, the author of The Shack, has published a non-fiction book about his own beliefs regarding many of the basic tenets of Christianity. It has received a TON of attention, and if you do intend to see the movie, you should read this first, if not the actual book.

Many people say the book and movie are fiction and should be taken as nothing more. Fair enough. But, using the method of story, they subtly interpret so many real and infinitely consequential things about God and faith that only knowledgeable and purposefully discerning readers/watchers will be able to sort fact from fiction, and if you’re spending all your time doing that, I venture to say it would be hard to just enjoy the story.

Gospel Culture

“We need the gospel pressed in at every level, with many ways of speaking and hearing it. We need the safety to be who we are, where we are. We need to be able to confess sin without fear of being looked down on or gossiped about. We need freedom to be needy.”

We don’t need to simply hear about the gospel; we need to hear it spoken into the specifics of our lives, experience its grace and freedom, and restructure the ins and outs of our lives around it. Here are a few simple ways to approach that.

Wise Technological Parenting

“It is the apex of foolishness for parents to allow their children to have free and unaccountable access to technology–smart phones, tablets, iPods, computers, etc.”

We’ve covered this before and will again. In our age of the internet and devices, it is neglect not to monitor our kids’ usage, talk to them about it, and train them how to wisely use the things God has given us. If we put them in their hands and walk away, we are welcoming harm into their lives.

Spare the Rod, Spoil the Parent

“She will spoil her son, but she will also spoil her relationship with her son. She will come to hate him. Of course she will! She will hate him because the lack of discipline made him unbearably rebellious and self-centered.”

This is a very good and unexpected take on the “spare the rod…” discussion. Whatever your approach to discipline, we must agree that training and discipline are not optional to parenting. This will be a motivating read for any parent. If you need help, please ask.

Helping Our Daughters to be Sexually Pure

“What I find interesting is what Paul uses as the antidote to sexual immorality…I’d have thought we’d see a word like purity or holiness…But he doesn’t. He said, ‘Let there be thanksgiving.'”

The article goes on to say, “When we are thankful for what we do have, the lure of the forbidden loses its luster.” This is a very gospel-centered approach: give the grace, freedom, and joy of the gospel, and it will destroy sinful desires. We don’t just say something is wrong. We show why something else is so much better in its place. (This also applies to sons and to our own selves.)

Now something a little lighter…

Can You Identity These Cities From Their Light Signatures?

A fun and interesting quiz.

Have a good week.