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Hey, Hey, Ho, Ho, Student Debt Has Got to Go
Find out which job pays $150,000 a year without a college degree.

Success Depends on What You Do In College, Not Where You Go
Includes three things professors should do to ensure students thrive in and after college.

Re-Discovering The Jewel Of Unity In Diversity
Gloria Furman: “Being a minority in a global city has been teaching me a lot about my own ethnocentricity. One time I was standing in a train station talking with a new acquaintance when she answered her phone and said to the person on the other line, “I am talking with a foreigner.” And here I was thinking that I was talking to a foreigner.” And here’s an interview about racial idolatry.

R-Rated Texts in An R-Rated World
Some good advice in here about when/how to preach on some of the “darker” biblical texts.

10 Awesome Free Books Online
Baptist 21 have compiled a list of 10 great ebooks that are free online for download.

How To Lead A Good Prayer Meeting
Kevin DeYoung with 10 lessons he’s learned since starting a monthly prayer meeting in his church.

Desi’s Service Dog Dons Cap And Gown For Graduation
Click through for neat video.

Thunderous Cries And Floodgates Of Love

I spent most of Tuesday night awake, first with the thunderous cries of my sick and fevered baby boy, then with real thunder.

The first did more for my sanctification than the latter. I must confess I’ve never been fast out of bed when one of the kids is sick. Somehow Shona always beat me to it. She did last night too, but by the third screaming episode, guilt beat sloth, I rolled out of bed, and stumbled along the corridor.

Getting up in the middle of the night is not so easy in your mid-forties compared to your mid-twenties – and it’s been a long time since we’ve had a baby in the house – but when I entered Scot’s room and saw the wee guy standing in the cot yelling his head off, my heart melted, my resentment evaporated, and my sympathy flowed.

With previous kids, I usually could only think of how quickly I might get them quiet and get back to bed again as fast as possible. Purely functional efficiency. A man thing.

But this time I sat patiently with him, just stroking his cute fuzzy little head;  he slowly calmed down and fifteen minutes later fell asleep in my arms. But instead of the usual quick drop back into his cot (deed done) and getting myself back under the covers as quick as I could, I stayed probably another 15 minutes, maybe more.

And I enjoyed it.

Just holding, stroking, hugging, comforting, loving. Most of which he was utterly oblivious to.

I wanted to stay all night, but I was afraid I’d fall asleep and drop him!

As I pondered this strangely pleasant experience, I couldn’t help think about HOW MUCH MORE my heavenly Father enjoys comforting me, calming me down, holding me, “stroking” me, loving me – both when I’m screaming and when I’m fast asleep in His arms, both when I’m sick and when I’m well, both when I’m aware of it and when I’m oblivious to it.

As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him (Ps. 103:13).

Indeed God’s pleasure in His children infinitely exceeds the greatest pleasure I’ve ever had in mine.

Lie back in His arms today and enjoy His enjoyment of you; get pleasure from His pleasure in you.

Your cries open the floodgates of His love.

And you don’t have to wait until you are sick and screaming.

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4 Ways Pride Can Destroy A Team
L. J. Rittenhouse can predict the future performance of a company based on the frequency of “I” in the shareholder letters. An “I” leader is a leader who is going to lead the organization downward over time.

Three Things To Consider About Multi-Culturalism
A diversity of cultures within the local church is a gift because it reflects the family of God.

Top 10 Causes of Depression In Pastors
Marc Rutland: “That is the big ten as I have observed them, not in some distant, statistical study, but up close and personal. I know I am not unique or even rare in this experience. I have occasionally struggled with depression, more circumstantial than clinical though not altogether, throughout my forty-six years of ministry.”

Six Ways You Can Help Families Facing Autism
It doesn’t take being around a family with an autistic child very long to make your heart ache to know something,anything you can do to help. The good news is, there are six practical things you can do.

“Mom, You Are The Real MVP”
This is well worth watching the whole way through. But if you’ve only got a few minutes, watch the first 30 secs and then go to 4.58.

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Can We Trade Sexual Immorality For Church Growth
Russell Moore helps us rebut the argument that “evangelical Christianity must retool our sexual ethic if we’re ever going to reach the next generation.”

Equip Your Kids To Say No To Porn
“Parents must be proactive in talking about porn with their kids.”

The Best Way To Live
Tim Brister: “For Jesus, the Ten Commandments were not a restrictive list of don’ts. It was a prescription of the best way to love God and to love one another.” And here’s Trevin Wax on The Love Behind The Law.

The Higher Ed Bubble Starts to Pop
Five reasons why a spate of colleges have started closing their doors or slashing budgets and Faculty.

A Good Funeral
This pastor’s favorite aspect of church is conducting Christian funerals.

Twins Separated for 80 Years Reunited
As a twin myself this resonates deeply. Read more at the BBC.

10 Money Lessons To Teach Your Kids

Yesterday I gave a brief review of Smart Money Smart Kids by Dave Ramsey and his daughter, Rachel Cruze. Today I want to summarize ten of the lessons I learned from the book.

1. We are all teaching our children how to handle money. The only questions are: (i) are we doing it intentionally or accidentally? and (ii) are we teaching them good lessons or bad lessons?

2. However bad your financial past, you can start to make it better today, change your family tree, and leave the best possible legacy for your children – a good example of financial stewardship.

3. Teaching your children financial stewardship begins with teaching them how to work because work builds discipline and self-denial. Giving our children money without expecting them to work breeds an entitlement mentality. Studies show that students who work ten to nineteen hours a week actually have higher GPAs on average than students who don’t hold jobs while in school.

4. We should teach our children how to divide all income into three main categories: save, spend, give.

5. At times we should let our kids suffer the consequences of their financial decisions – if our kids don’t learn how to make small inexpensive mistakes when they are kids, they will make huge and expensive mistakes as adults.

6. Teach our kids the value of the least used word in parenting today “NO!”

7. The Five Foundations for teenage financial responsibility:

  • Save a $500 emergency fund.
  • Get out of debt.
  • Pay cash for a car.
  • Pay cash for college.
  • Build wealth and give.

8. You will never get out of debt or build wealth if you have a car payment… Paying cash for a car and buying a used one is the shortest path to building wealth.

9. If you want to raise money-smart kids, you have to raise kids who are content… A heart filled with gratitude leaves no room for discontentment.

And the BIGGEST lesson of all in the book:

10. We must teach our children that they don’t own money—they are simply managers, or stewards of it. Owners have rights; managers have responsibilities. Owners think of themselves; managers can’t. It isn’t their money, so they must think of others. Owners worry over their money; managers don’t need to worry because the money isn’t theirs to begin with. Owners hold with a tight fist; managers hold with an open hand.

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How Personal Relationships Threaten The Power Of The State
“But the really dirty little secret statists would rather you not know is this:  strong relationships of mutual self-sacrifice yield the greatest prosperity of every kind – spiritual, emotional, and material – for everyone.”

How A Dad Loves A Prodigal
Well, this made me weep in the middle of Chicago airport. It brought back a lot of memories.

5 Observations About Younger Southern Baptists
Not many of them in Grand Rapids, but if you’re at all interested in the wider cause of Christ, this is fascinating.

I Miss The Absurdity
It actually gets replaced by an even stranger absurdity.

Preparing Your Teens For College
R.C. Sproul Jr. interviews Alex Chediak about his new book. Any parents with high-school age kids should get this. We just distributed 20 copies to families in our church.

What To Do When You’re Engulfed By Darkness
Some innovative (but biblical) solutions here.

Ben Carson: What’s The Importance of Common Sense