Grace upon grace

Grace upon grace

One of our annual vacations has been a two-day camping trip over the memorial day holiday. We have camped with friends at Carpinteria State Beach for the last couple of years. The campsite is within walking distance of the beach and the city. There are train tracks nearby, so you hear the train whizzing by, while at night, you hear the sound of the crashing waves on the shore. A bonus (not really) are the crows that wake you up in the morning. One of my favorite times during the trip is waking up early in the morning to walk on the beach while the sun begins to rise. I like to reflect as I look out into the sea that seems endless, watching the wave goes back and forth. I feel a sense of peace and tranquility as I take in the sounds of the sea and the sights of birds overhead. A particular Scripture kept coming to my mind...
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Book Review: Redeem Your Marriage: Hope for Husbands Who Have Hurt through Pornography by Curis Solomon

Book Review: Redeem Your Marriage: Hope for Husbands Who Have Hurt through Pornography by Curis Solomon

I recently had the opportunity to read a new book by Curis Solomon called, Redeem Your Marriage: Hope for Husbands Who Have Hurt through Pornography. His wife, Jenny Solomon, also wrote a companion book called Reclaim Your Marriage: Grace for Wives Who Have Been Hurt by Pornography. Solomon is a biblical counselor and serves as the Executive Director of the Biblical Counseling Coalition. The topic of pornography is important for biblical counselors to address. Unfortunately, the message in our culture seems to be that porn is no big deal, and my experience in the church is that many people struggle but few people talk about the issue. This new book by Solomon felt you were sitting with a friend over coffee who offered hope and wisdom to deal with this common struggle with sin. I appreciate the transparency from his own life and how he held the tension of calling pornography evil while not condemning the one struggling. Instead, he...
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Why do I complain so much?

A week ago, my family visited a local farm to pick strawberries. As we left, I bought each of my kids a flavored popsicle for the drive home. They enjoyed it for a few minutes until I heard from the back of the car that my son wanted a napkin because he did not like it. My ten-year-old daughter told my eight-year-old son, "You never like anything, it's too hot, or it's too cold, it doesn't taste good, you are never satisfied." At that moment I did not know whether I should commend her for her skillful assessment of the human heart or to comfort my son who had just received a tongue lashing as he had his heart exposed. Over this last year it seems that complaining has become so normal that we do not realize we are doing it all the time.  Can you believe the traffic? I cannot believe I have to wear a mask outside. These politicians...
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Do you have an iPhone, or does your iPhone have you?

I came across a news article this morning that talked about a Digital Detox Challenge. I am reminded about how much technology is part of everyday life. I am not against technology by any means, I was part of the generation that grew up when the internet was gaining popularity. I am in the age group that can be part of Gen X or Gen Y (Millennials), depending on whom you ask. Wikipedia is the authority on all truth, right? The article I read this morning talked about a contest where they choose people to take a 24-hour period without any technology. They will pay $2,400 and even supply a safe to lock up your devices! There is a lot to say about how gamification, financial incentives, and preventing access can be tools for temporary behavior modification. Long-lasting change comes by aiming at the heart, which I will cover in future blog posts. All that to say, this sounds like a...
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