Why It’s Always About Me

It's Always My Fault

Counselee: “My wife doesn’t respect me.”
Me: “Why do you think you’re not easy to respect?”
Counselee: “What does this have to do with me?”


Counselee: “My parents are such idiots!”
Me: “You know, I don’t think the Lord’s glorified when you talk about your parents that way. ”
Counselee: “You’re just like my parents! Why’s it always my fault?!”


Friend: “When you’re talking with atheists, it doesn’t do any good to quote the Bible to them.”
Me: “Well, I don’t see any other options. God says His Word is powerful and effective. My human reasoning won’t sway them if His Word doesn’t.”
Friend: “Yeah, I don’t think it works.”
Me: “Maybe you need to reconsider the sufficiency of the Scripture. What’s God been teaching you in His Word recently?”
Friend: “Why does this have to be about me?”

Always My Fault

Of course, you realize that few conversations actually work this quickly. Wisdom dictates that it take a bit longer to get from the first observation to the last.

Still, over the past ten years of family counseling I can’t remember a single situation where a counselee was perfectly innocent within a conflict. There wasn’t a single man who hadn’t provoked his children to wrath or not lived with his wife according to knowledge. I never counseled a wife who’d submitted to her husband and loved her children consistently. And – believe it or not – I never met a child who honored and obeyed his parents without fault.

They all had grievances, they all had mental fingers to point, they all had emotional subpoenas to deliver, they all had judgment to bear down . . . but they all had responsibility too. Each train-wrecked relationship was partially their doing. Each argument was of their own making.

The same goes for me.

Continue reading “Why It’s Always About Me”

“The Art of War . . . um, I mean Debate”

The Art of War . . . um, I Mean Debate.
The Art of War . . . um, I Mean Debate.

Debates. We say we hate them, but we all get into them . . . all the time.

Every disagreement that presents two conflicting viewpoints is a debate of one form or another. It may simply be a friendly squabble, a formal argument, or a kick-to-the-head Facebook brawl.

And just because people use them the wrong way or participate in them sinfully does not automatically mean all debates are sinful. Jesus Himself frequently entered conversations where differing opinions struggled and where people walked away still in disagreement. This observation teaches us two things: 1. There are righteous ways to debate, and 2. Just because the other person isn’t swayed to our side after the final rebuttal, doesn’t make the process invaluable.

Because if you believe all debates are wrong or pointless . . . God disagrees with you.

So, how does a Christian debate in a way that pleases the Lord?

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Balanced Approach to God

The So-Called “Balanced Approach” to God

Balanced Approach to God

How do you view God?

Do you see Him as a Holy Judge-King?

Perhaps you view Him as a Loving Father-Savior.

Or maybe you like to take a “balanced approach.”

I ask because an acquaintance of mine recently wrote an article entitled “Should We Dress for Church Like We’re Meeting with the President?” In the article he makes the observation that,

“There is a kernel of truth that surfaces when comparing a meeting with the president to our ‘Sunday’s best’ for God. The disturbing reality of this parallel is what it actually does reflect — a sterile meeting with a stranger and the complete absence of any real relationship and transparency. This illustration exposes the nominal Christian’s relationship to God — distant, infrequent, formal, absent of any true affection, and void of any real relationship apart from an official appointment on Sunday morning. I wonder if those who use this argument wear their ‘Sunday’s best’ when they meet with God through His word on Monday morning or Thursday evening? It leaves me wondering who they are really dressing up for? Perhaps it’s a high view of the corporate gathering, or possibly it’s a disconnect stemming from a false dichotomy.”

I am very passionate on the subject of worship because not only is it something I take very seriously in my own life, but also because how we worship God reveals what we believe Him to be. That revelation should be a dramatically important grapple-moment in our lives – especially when “what we believe God to be” does not fit His revelation in Scripture. When Who God is and how we view Him don’t match up, we have a profound problem with sweeping implications – not only for worship but for every facet of our lives.

Let me lead into this short discussion with the observation that I agree with most of what Steve Hafler wrote in his article. And something tells me that he would agree with mine. Of course, that’s left to be seen. I think the difference of application grows from a misunderstanding of what a “balanced approach” to God actually is.

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Christian Quote

“The purpose of your gifts . . . .” – Quote

“The purpose of your gifts is the edification of the Body. But if you’re not engaging the body, your gifts are wasted.” Click To Tweet

The purpose of your gifts - Quote

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But It’s Easier NOT Going to Church

But It's Easier Not Going to Church

I didn’t go to church this morning. And by church, I’m not referring to the building, I’m speaking of participating with the Body of Christ in corporate worship.

I’m sick.

My choice was motivated primarily out of two considerations:

  1. I will increasingly have a harder time doing my best for God the more ill I become. I need to recuperate.
  2. Subjecting others to whatever yuckiness I may have to share is unkind.

This is not “forsaking the assembling.” In fact, I agree with Dr. Rand Hummel that sometimes sleep is the most godly thing you can do.

But there are plenty of other people not at church today, and many of their reasons are not as advisable.
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“‘One Anothers’ I Can’t Find in the New Testament” – Ray Ortlund

“______________ one another.”

What exactly does the Bible say about that?

Here’s a great little article telling us some things God doesn’t say about that: “One Anothers” I Can’t Find in the New Testament.

“Remove the Head from the church . . . .” – Quote

“Remove the Head from the church, and what do you have? A dead body.” Click To Tweet

Remove the Head - Quote

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Is Blood Really Thicker than Water?

I have extended family members who hold the belief that there’s no one more important than family.

They’re willing to sacrifice as many hours as it takes and suffer deleterious economic consequences all for family.

They’re even willing to compromise God’s truth to keep “peace” in the family.

Unfortunately, this view of family is anti-biblical.
Continue reading “Is Blood Really Thicker than Water?”

“Same-Sex Attraction in the Church” – Nick Roen

Same-Sex Attraction in the Church

Nick Roen did something very hard.

Nick did something most of us have spent our entire lives trying to avoid.

He was honest about his temptation.

This video cannot circulate fast enough because it speaks to both sides of the equation:

  1. For those struggling with temptation of any kind, heed Nick’s admonition.
  2. For those relating to people struggling with temptation, point them to God.

“Be Most Dead”

Be Most Dead
"Be Most Dead"

Like a king meeting his death
On the road he took to avoid it,
So the church will breathe its last breath
When it tries to dictate its own worship

By implementing plans God denies.
For this can only happen
When men and women do not rely
On the truth the Lord has given.

In three days the temple had glory
By God's own hand.
And unless Christ sustains the body
It will fall under the plans of man.

Decapitation brings decay to every living thing.
How do you suppose to continue living
When you've severed Christ, our head?
The church, though full, will be most dead.


Written for "How to Destroy Your Church."