Help! Conversations with a Fool Go Nowhere!

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“I’ve tried having mutual conversations with my spouse, but we never get anywhere. He’s always right. My opinions matter little to him. He tends to dismiss and minimize any of my concerns. Every attempt on my part to engage in a meeting of the minds is met with either hostility or laughter. I often leave conversations feeling guilty. Like I did something wrong to even bring up an issue. I often feel confused and stuck. What do I do?”

Let’s talk about that.

Is the Christian Modesty Message Causing Women to be Ashamed of Their Bodies?

To Love, Honor, and Vacuum
October 1, 2014

The Christian modesty message also says that boys are basically helpless to withstand this onslaught of seeing girls’ curves. All guys, including all older men, will lust if they see you. I’m not sure how that message is supposed to make women like men.

I am so glad Sheila isn’t afraid to start some conversations about these kinds of things. I think we are in desperate need of re-thinking stuff, because some of the rabbit trails we’ve gone down have ended in destruction for a lot of young (and old!) women. Read the rest of this FANTASTIC, thought-provoking article HERE. I think she does a great job of putting things in perspective without going off the deep end one way or the other.

When Your Child’s Personality Annoys You

The Beginning of Wisdom
October 2, 2014

But every bloom cultivated in an orderly garden grows as a wildflower somewhere. Children’s untamed and sometimes frustrating personality traits are no different. Before you work to uproot them, consider whether behind that annoying trait is a strength waiting to be trained up. So often, the quality that manifests as a child’s greatest weakness holds the potential to be his greatest strength.

Read the rest of this article by Jen Wilkin HERE.

He is tied to us. By placing His image in us, God assumes an extra measure of ownership and responsibility for our lives. We are His brand, His trademark. You may remember that the second commandment prohibits making graven images of God. Part of the reason behind this is that God has already given a graven image of Himself—in us.

But more than this, by placing His image on us, God has bound Himself to us as a parent. We are His children. And like any good parent, He must protect and nurture His children. The beauty and genius of this is that our good and His glory are inseparable. While our good is found by displaying His glory, His glory is found by bringing about our good.

Hannah Anderson
Made for More: An Invitation to Live in God's Image (Moody Publishers, 2014)

Walking on the Wild Side of Parenting

Faith Gateway
September 29, 2014

In our enthusiasm to celebrate children (a good thing), we are sometimes tempted to overlook the key Christian doctrine of original sin. A child can be raised by godly parents, yet still choose to live an ungodly life:

A wise son heeds his father’s instruction, but a mocker does not listen to rebuke.Proverbs 13:1

Some sons can bring great honor to their home and their parents; others choose to bring shame:

He who gathers crops in summer is a wise son, but he who sleeps during harvest is a disgraceful son.Proverbs 10:5

Some children will bring anguish rather than joy:

A wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish man despises his mother.Proverbs 15:20

At times children can even steal from their parents (Proverbs 28:24) or drive their mother from her own house (Proverbs 19:26). In this regard, the Bible is more honest than many contemporary Christians. In the Old Testament, God gives us accounts of children who do all sorts of heinous acts.

Read the rest of this article by Gary Thomas HERE.

The incredible irony of the gospel for abuse victims is that Jesus suffered the most extreme form of physical abuse so that the broken could be healed (“by His scourging we are healed” [Isaiah 53:5]). In fact, this irony is so great that the dominant symbol of Christianity is an instrument of sadistic abuse—a cross. When one understands the grotesque nature of crucifixion, by which the founder of Christianity and many early Christian leaders were tortured to death, it’s amazing that Christians image their faith with a cross (1 Corinthians 2:2). It would be comparable to Jews making the symbol of Judaism a miniature crematorium they wear around their necks and place on their synagogues. The cross is the most powerful symbol imaginable of God’s ability to heal and redeem abuse. 

After enduring incredible suffering, Paul declared that through all of the abuse, Christ was sweeter and stronger in his life (2 Corinthians 4:8–18; 12:10). God always desires to heal our brokenness and to use it as the very nutrient to draw us into a deeper experience of joyful intimacy with him and to give us an opportunity for more fruitful ministry to others who are also broken (Romans 8:17; 2 Corinthians 1:4–6).

Steven R. Tracy
Mending the Soul: Understanding and Healing Abuse (Zondervan, 2009-05-26), 332