Getting grace and faith right

Getting grace and faith right

Christians love to use the words ‘grace’ and ‘faith’. You would be hard pressed to listen to a Christian sermon or sing a Christian song without mention of one of these words. But what do they mean? Can you come up with a short and simple definition of each one? Sometimes we assume we know …

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The Old Testament sacrifices teach us a great deal

The Old Testament sacrifices teach us a great deal

Have you ever read the descriptions of Old Testament sacrifices and found them very odd? After all, most of us don’t have much experience of sacrifices, never having even seen one. They seem like some kind of relic of an ancient past completely disconnected from our present-day world. In fact, they seem barbaric and bloody …

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The problem with looking for a villain

The problem with looking for a villain

Whenever something terrible happens, the common narrative put forward by the news organisations is that someone evil is to blame. We then get a profile of the ‘monster’ in question. We are supposed to cheer when that person gets justice, either in the form of a tragic death or a severe jail sentence. This perspective …

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Tiredness and rest

Tiredness and rest

As I write this blog post (in late December), I am feeling tired. Not that kind of tiredness that comes after one hard day’s work, but the kind that builds up over time. This tiredness is the result of many months of high-level work. You know the feeling; I am sure many of you can …

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Do this one thing to change your life

Do this one thing to change your life

So many news articles online have the kind of clickbait title that I gave this blog post. You know the ones: do these seven things to lose body fat; number 4 will surprise you! You also get that kind of promise in all kinds of Christian books, that if you follow these 6 rules, you …

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Finding joy in the right place

Finding joy in the right place

You see the word “joy” all over the place this time of year. You have probably seen it on decorations, on greeting cards, and in supermarkets. You may well have sung carols which use the word liberally throughout. It is supposed to be the most joyful time of the year. And there are things that …

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Having Biblical expectations of our work

Having Biblical expectations of our work

Many people have started to reassess their work this year; it has become known as the Great Resignation. After the impact of COVID led to many working from home, then part-time in an office, it has given people time to think. And, on reflection, many people discovered that they were dissatisfied with their work. Maybe …

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Encouraging in a distinctively Christian way

Encouraging in a distinctively Christian way

What do you think it means to encourage someone? My immediate thought was that it meant to say something nice to someone. Perhaps that would be compliment their clothes or thank them for something. Perhaps it would be cheering on a child in a sporting match. While those are indeed good things to do, Christian …

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Pursue the things of God

Pursue the things of God

When you are trying to change some kind of bad habit or mindset, working on what to stop doing is only part of the story. You need to replace the bad habit with something else. That is why you often find former smokers becoming committed runners. It’s not just about what to stop; it is …

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Fleeing the love of money

Fleeing the love of money

We live in a time where greed is perfectly acceptable to most people. We use words like “ambitious” and “upwardly mobile” and “aspirational” which sound so much more positive. Using all of our efforts towards a better life and nicer things is just the norm. We need to realise that this desire for more is …

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