Social Media and Digital Discernment

This isn’t the first article I’ve read on this topic, and it certainly won’t be the last as more and more Christian leaders discuss this topic in order to guide the Church. But MacArthur has a great clarity about him that few have, and I recommend this article (to be read in it’s ENTIRETY, not skimmed) to you and hope we can think through these things together. Here’s a snippet near the end that I found relevant, but again, read the whole thing:

While scientists and social critics debate the effects of social media on how we think, one thing remains clear: Christians must guard themselves against becoming theological pancakes. Thanks to the market-driven methodologies of the seeker-sensitive movement, the dumbing down of doctrine has characterized American evangelicalism for decades. In many ways, sites like Twitter and Facebook only exacerbate that problem because they provide a venue in which reductionism and extreme brevity simultaneously coincide with information overload and infinite distraction.

But not every theological truth can be adequately summarized in just a phrase or two. And not every debate can be resolved in just one blog article. Many doctrines require extended time and thought to properly process. Mature believers reflect deeply on the things of God and the truths of His Word.

They are not a mile wide and an inch deep. Instead their lives are marked by rich devotion, focused study, prolonged prayer, and careful mediation. Cultivating those kinds of spiritual disciplines takes time and effort—traits that are rarely prized in the information age.

Social Media and Digital Discernment, John MacArthur
Social Media and Digital Discernment, John MacArthur - PDF Version (much cleaner layout)

Man Up!

There’s a new cover story out from Newsweek titled “Man Up!” Dr. Albert Mohler has some great thoughts on it, but this paragraph really sticks out in my mind as I fulfill my duties as a husband and father:

A true masculinity is grounded in a man’s determination to fulfill his manhood in being a good husband, father, citizen, worker, leader, and friend — one who makes a difference, fulfills a role for others, and devotes his life to these tasks. Most of our fathers went to work early and toiled all day because they knew it was their duty to put bread on the table, a roof over our heads, and a future in front of us. They made their way to ball games and school events dead tired, went home and took care of things, and then got up and did it all over again the next day.

Read Dr. Mohler’s entire post here.

Hear, See, and Do – #12

HEAR: The Blessings of Following Christ - A Sermon by Scott Ardavanis

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SEE: The Denver Post’s Photo Collection “Childhood Poverty in Colorado”
Denver Post - "Childhood Poverty in Colorado"This is probably the best photo journal I’ve seen to date and not really on a subject that I would have expected. The Denver Post has put together a collection of images and stories of families living in some of the poorest conditions right here in America. Often we see poverty photographed in Africa or India, but some of the families photographed in this collection are only minutes from downtown Denver, Colorado. Take the time to not only stare at the photos, but read the captions and hear the stories. It brought me to tears, but I think it’s worth the read.

DO: Buy the book Rules for My Unborn Son
Rules for My Unborn SonThanks to the kindness of a friend, I received the book “Rules For My Unborn Son” this past week and I can’t get enough of it. Jam packed full of simple, smart, and funny “rules” for sons to live by, it’s the perfect present for a dad-to-be like myself. Some gems include: “Spend time with your mother. She’s cooler than you think.” And “Always stop at a lemonade stand. Tip well.>” These are just a few of the great rules for sons to live by. Each page has only two or three rules and scattered black and white photos from yesteryear that give the overall vibe of the book a retro past. You’ll love it, your friends will love it, and if you take to heart some of this “dad wisdom” you just might stay out of trouble.

There Are No Atheists During an Ultrasound

Son

The old saying is, “there are no atheists in foxholes,” but I’d like to modernize it a bit and say “there are no atheists during an ultrasound.” This is not to say that I’m an atheist — cause I’m not, but even as a believer in the God of the Bible and His creation of man, I was seriously overwhelmed yesterday as I got to see pictures of my future son (pictured above).

Though he was a bit camera shy, my wife and I got to watch video of our son in real time as the doctor walked us through the incredible miracle that is human life. We were able to zoom in on the chambers of the heart and see the blood flow, then view the little black dots that were his kidneys, and even see his mouth, ears, and nose (to which my wife said in her sweetest voice, “I think he has your nose!”). At one point our little growing boy even shook his head as if to say, “hey, quit bothering me!” It’s an experience that many other families have probably had, but for us it was the first time witnessing this. It’s not like the movies, or even reality TV. Even then you’re disconnected from what’s going on in the room, and more importantly the new feelings that first-time parents are experiencing. As I held my wife’s hand and watched the black and white monitor I realized that it must be pretty hard for people to attribute the miracle of life to nothing.

It’s simply God at work, and I struggle with how people could stand in that room and literally see a miracle happening before them and attribute it to some “accident” or think “well, it’s just how it works.” It’s no accident, and it’s not just a bunch of atoms that happened to get together — it’s God’s hand and we get the privilege of being a part of it and to watch it happen before our very eyes. David wrote in Psalm 139:13-14:

For You formed my inward parts;
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.

I saw some weaving going on yesterday and my soul definitely knew it well.

What Dizmas is Doing

I’ve shared before that my good friend Zach Zegan is the lead singer of a band called Dizmas, and they are currently serving in a very unique and special ministry in Czech Republic. The video below is from a few of the guys in the band and really explains what they are doing day-to-day and I thought for those of you who have supported or know Zach and the band, then this would be a great way to hear their hearts and what God is doing in that country.