Tag Archive | paul david tripp

What’s your _____ for 2012?

“The eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor is the ear filled with hearing.”  Eccl.1:8

What’s your _____??

I’m wondering what you think will make you happier in 2012 than in 2011?

You say, I will be happy if _____.

I’ll be content if I can accomplish _____.

If I can have ____, then life is GOOD!

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We all have something we think will make us happy, fully satisfied and will fill that BLANK if our lives.  “If I just had a bit more money in the bank….”  “If only my spouse would go to church, show me more consideration, or love me more….” “If I could just have that gorgeous person in my life….” “Once I have the latest iPhone/Pod/Pad then….”  “If only I could be healed from….”

But, even IF we could have all those things and more, there’s something else to long for just around the corner.  More money, more fun, a sexier man/woman, newer car, greater security… Where does it end?

Jesus told a woman in a dusty little village that if she drank water from their earthly well, she would thirst again.  That’s our human predicament.  We thirst again, lust again, covet again, and WANT again.  Otherwise, why would children want more toys after a bountiful Christmas?  Or, if you can handle it, my husband says it this way:

“Why publish monthly issues of Penthouse? Shouldn’t one suffice?”

What/who can ever satisfy our parched thirst for more, and more, and more??

Christ alone.

Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again…

…but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life!

If the Lord isn’t our BLANK, our One Thing, we will keep coming up empty, thirsty, and dissatisfied.

…your one thing will control your heart, and whatever controls your heart will exercise inescapable influence over your words, choices, and actions.  Your one thing will become that which shapes and directs your responses to the situations and relationships of your daily life.  If the Lord isn’t your one thing, the thing that is your one thing will be your lord!”  Paul Tripp, A Shelter in a Time of Storm, page 38.

I fall prey to the illusive concept of satisfaction, even as life’s decades pile high.  I need to be reminded that my blanks will never be filled in adequately apart from Christ–I will thirst again, want new toys, *need* new things.

May we be more like David, when he prayed in Psalm 27:

One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.

Be THOU my Vision, Oh Lord. 

Jesus alone satisfies and He will never disappoint!

And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.   Romans 5:5

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O satisfy us in the morning with Your lovingkindness, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.

Psalm 80:14

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[Check out my post, Enough, for more encouragement on this subject.]

Titus 2’sday

I wonder why I thought I could write for TWO blogs when I have a difficult time maintaining one? Some of you may know from my New Year’s goals, that I wanted to invest time into another blog, specifically for women, to encourage, train, and minister according to Titus 2:3-5:

Older women, likewise, are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored. 

With honesty and personal candor, I realize that I can’t maintain two blogs.  I’d rather do ONE thing well, instead of two things mediocre! 

Therefore, I’m closing up shop on Titus2U, and instead, designating every Tuesday at this site as Titus 2’sdays [groan], where we can discuss and encourage one another on how to love our husbands, love our children, be kind, sensible, responsible at home, and bring glory to the Lord and His Word! 

For starters, here is my first, and only, post from Titus2U:

Contrary Mary:

 

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?

 

I always think of this nursery rhyme when I find myself being argumentative with my husband.  You know, it’s those days when he might say the sky is blue, and I say it’s gray. He wants to wait, I want to move forward, etc.  Have you ever found yourself being ‘contrary Mary’?

Maybe some cues of what contrary ‘looks like’ will help out:

From Webster:
“being so different as to be at opposite extremes : also,
being opposite to or in conflict with each other;  unwilling to accept control or advice

From Rogets:
Anti-  [anything!]
hostile
unfriendly
opponent
adverse
repugnant
negative
opposite
conflictive
alien
uncooperative
obstinate
clashing
discordant
competitive
hindering
disagreeable

From Vine’s:
against
accuser
antagonistic
adversary
set against
oppose
resist

This is convicting!  And now I know I don’t want to be Contrary Mary…standing there, with hoe in hand, pointing out why I am right, my husband is wrong, and “what’s more…yaddi yaddi yah”.

How can I keep from being this little controlling, contrary, anti-everything woman in my home?

1.   PRAY!!  Ask the Lord to change ME….not my spouse.

2.   Seek the Lord’s righteousness and kingdom, not My own kingdom of one.

3.   Take my cues from God’s Word.  Ephesians 4:30-32:

Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption

Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice

                   Be kind to one another

                   tender-hearted

                   forgiving each other,

                  just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.

4.  Remember, I am a sinner saved by grace, married to another sinner saved by grace. *

 

A little prayer for today:

Dear Lord, I don’t want to be a contrary Mary, but something rises up in me, seeking control, and wanting things to go my way.  Grant me the strength and grace this day to seek first Your will and your kingdom.  Help me to think first before I speak, to weigh my words against Your Word, and to be submitted to your Holy Spirit.  I need you and trust you, Lord.  Thank you, in Jesus’ name.  Amen

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* Taken from Paul D. Tripp’s book on marriage, What Did You Expect?    We will discuss more from this book in the future.

Booking It 2011

I know…the month is closing down and I’m just now posting my 2011 reading list!  But I must speak to my inner guilt, and say..well, at least it’s still January!

Once again, with encouragement from LifeasMom, Carrie’s Busy Nothings, and Beth Stone’s Studio, I’m committing myself to another year of good reading with the Booking It 2011 project!  If you check out any of these blogs, you can see what they are reading, and read their reviews as the year progresses.  Last year I posted my reading list for 2010 HERE.  However, as things go, some were dropped and others added, so this is what I actually read:

Before Green Gables (reviewed here), by Budge Wilson
Broken-Down House (reviewed here), by Paul D. Tripp
Little Dorrit, by Charles Dickens
The Pilgrim’s Progress, by John Bunyan
Shelter in a Time of Storm, (reviewed here), by Paul D. Tripp
Anne of Green Gables and Anne of Avonlea, by Lucy M Montgomery
Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers, by Arthur Bennett
Transforming Together: Authentic Spiritual Mentoring, by Ele Parrott
Stuff Christians Like, by Jon Acuff (funny!!!!!)
A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens
Now That is Amazing Grace, by William McDonald
Learning to Pray in 28 Days, by Kay Arthur
What Did You Expect?  by Paul D. Tripp, this time, about marriage

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For 2011, I’ve compiled this optimistic list and am really looking forward to all the great reading ahead!!

Les Miserables, by Victor Hugo
Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy, by Eric Mataxas  (in progress)
Orthodoxy, by GH Chesterton
Generous Justice,  by Timothy Keller
Nicholas Nickleby,  by Charles Dickens
The Confession,  by John Grisham
Planet Narnia, by Michael Ward

And more ‘Anne‘ books:
Anne of the Island 
Anne of Windy Poplar  
Anne’s House of Dreams
Anne of Ingleside
Rainbow Valley
Rilla of Ingleside

And I’ve added Faith Alone, by Luther, to my devotional list.  I hope Spurgeon won’t mind too much.

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This list could take a wide detour if my courses in M.Ed assign copious reading projects!  So my ambitious aspirations, as Captain Barbosa would say, “are really more like guidelines.” 

Please join me, and many others over at LifeasMom, for good reading, discussion, and encouragement!  What are you reading?

Broken-Down House

I’m one-month behind in my reading plan…but I doubt anyone noticed.  However, I feel like I have a ‘great cloud” of anonymous reading partners from Lifeasmom, who are all committed to a personal reading plan for the year..and watching me.  So, I press on!   

Over the past year or so, I’ve read three books by Paul David Tripp, and each were perfectly suited for the time.   I probably shared the most from A Shelter in the Time of Storm, and still count it as my favourite.

But my May book sounded so intriguing and did not disappoint–Broken-Down House.  I think the title’s the reason I bought the book!  Over three years ago, we bought a little house in the country, which, though not truly broken-down, certainly needed some repair.  And as anyone who have ever owned a home knows, once you fix one thing, it’s time to fix something else.

Tripp shares that the world we live in is a lot like a broken-down house.  He acknowledges that “sin has ravaged the beautiful house that God created,” then he graciously, and often poetically, reminds the reader, page after page, of the reconciliation, restoration, and hope we have in Christ.  In the last chapter, he aptly summarizes the book’s context:

Yes, you are living in a broken-down house.  Here, you will face discouragement, danger, disappointment, and grief.  There will be times when life will seem overwhelmingly hard…

But you can, beyond any question, live productively in this broken world.  There are things worth living for and things worthy of celebration.  You can, beyond any question, be one of God’s tools of rescue and restoration.

…You can do these things, and know these things, because of grace.”

GRACE is the primary theme of the book.  Grace is the only way we can live in this world, or have hope for the next.   Here’s one of my favourite passages:

Grace is the most transformational word in Scripture.  The entire Bible is a narrative of God’s grace, a story of undeserved redemption.  By the transformational power of his grace, God unilaterally reaches into the muck of this fallen world, through the presence of His Son, and radically transforms his children from what we are (sinners) to what we are becoming by his power (Christ-like).  The famous Newton hymn uses the best word possible for that grace, amazing!

Broken-Down House not only encourages the reader of the need for grace in this less-than-perfect world, but also challenges believers to action.  With chapter titles such as, “Reject Passivity,” “Be Good and Angry,” “Determine to Love,” and “Minister Everywhere,”  Tripp confronts us with the fact that (I) we are tools of God’s restoration and reconciliation.  As another Paul said 2000 years ago:

“All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation;  that is, in Christ, God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.

Therefore we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us, we implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.”  2 Corinthians 5:18-20

Broken-Down House is more than a reminder of the state of this dilapidated world.  Through it, Tripp provokes us to “live productively in a world gone bad,” and “to fight the urge to give in or give up.  [God] calls you to live with perseverance now and invest wholeheartedly in what is to come! ” 

Let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.”  Hebrews 12:1

 

Presently reading/next to be reviewed:   The Pilgrim’s Progress: From this World to that Which is To Come, John Bunyan.  Edited by C.J. Lovik