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Author: Spencer Harmon

Summer Reading Tips

I love summertime. Getting away on summer vacation (or staycation!). The smell of burgers on the grill. The giggles of kids in the sprinkler in the backyard. The smell of smoke after the fireworks. The crack of the bat against the baseball. And – of course – getting lost in a good book. Summer is often like a deep breath between the busyness of spring and fall, a reset of sorts. I want to encourage you this summer to cultivate the habit of reading so that you’ll keep it going throughout the second half of this year. Here are a few tips to help you pick up the wonderful habit of reading this summer: Read Something Fun, Fascinating, and Fruitful. I am a pastor. Most of my reading intake involves commentaries, theology books, and other non-fiction works. So, during the summers, I try to change...

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The Bible and Your Relationships

What is a real friend? If you Google that question, you will find several common answers: They listen. They are loyal. They are accepting. They are supportive. They are interested in similar things. They stick with you. They want what’s best. These lists all contain nice traits that have their place, but they all neglect the most important ingredient in relationships – the foundation, the root that produces the fruit of fellowship: The Bible. Are your relationships orbiting around the Bible? If they aren’t, you are missing out on one of the most important ingredients in the types of relationships that glorify God and bind people together for decades. Why do you need the Bible in relationships? Because You Need Friends Who Watch You Do you remember the first days of quarantine during...

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What is Godliness?

It’s a prerequisite for Christian leadership. It’s championed in Christian literature. Its absence is a red light in romantic relationships. It’s heralded in thousands of churches every Sunday. It motivates accountability groups, is commended by Christians around the world and is summarized in one word: Godliness. Godliness means conforming to the character of God in your thoughts, feelings, desires, and actions. Quite simply, being godly means being like God. But godliness is dangerous. Not because you may be persecuted if you pursue it – although you may. Not because Satan will oppose you at every turn of your striving towards it – although he will. Not because your sinful flesh will roar in resistance as you reach for it – although it will. No, godliness is dangerous for a much more subtle...

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How To Help Your LGBTQ Friend

If you are an evangelical Christian, the odds are that you know someone in the LGBTQ+ community. If you don’t, you will. 20% of Gen Z identifies as something other than heterosexual. Pretty soon, you will meet someone who has a partner of the same sex or “identifies” as something other than their biological sex. What do you need to know as you minister to your friend? This can be an overwhelming question if you are a Christian who believes the Bible. That is because two things are crystal clear: (1) the Bible teaches that the LGBTQ+ lifestyle is sinful and destructive, and (2) our culture is deeply hostile to anyone who would embrace what the Bible teaches. That means you are going to get into some tense moments if you are a Christian seeking to be faithful to Jesus during these times. There...

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How Do You Watch a Movie Like a Christian?

Netflix. Hulu. Disney+. Paramount+. Amazon Prime. HBO Max. Encanto. Boba Fett. Redeeming Love. Ted Lasso. Squid Game. Spiderman. Should Christians be entertained by these platforms, movies, and shows? Is it possible to consume the latest movies or binge-worthy shows and glorify God? How? From the ultra-conservative who only watches movies recommended by their pastor, to the movie connoisseur who somehow finds “the gospel” even in the most explicit content, the entertainment we consume often creates blurry lines for Christians. How can we bring biblical clarity and biblical purity to bear on our entertainment choices? Here are six principles to help you fight for purity: 1. Research You should never feel victimized by sin in your entertainment choices. In our day, there are several resources...

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Recovering Purity Culture

We need to recover purity culture. We read I Kissed Dating Goodbye in high school. As many will remember, Joshua Harris sought to dismantle what he identified as a culture of casual dating in the church. Many were helped by this book (including us!). A movement began, marked by purity banquets, purity rings, and commitments made by thousands of teenagers to save sexual intimacy for marriage. Purity culture was born. But for many, that culture crushed them. Many have recently reported that as this movement integrated into their communities, churches, and families, it was more suffocating than freeing. As they failed to keep the expectations of purity culture, they were isolated from their communities, keeping their sexual sin in the dark. Even Joshua Harris, the man at the center of this...

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