This is a new weekly series, updated every Saturday, which consists of links (six links, to be exact) to things that I read/watched/listened to that were intriguing, educational, informative, or otherwise noteworthy this week.
N.D. Wilson did a great podcast with Stephen Altrogge at The Blazing Center. I’m a huge fan of Wilson’s nonfiction writings. I specified nonfiction simply because I haven’t read any of his fiction work, although I intend to at some point in the year to come. Notes from the Tilt-A-Whirl is maybe one of the top five most influential books I’ve ever read. Listening to Wilson talk about life is always stimulating and refreshing, the kind of thing that snaps you out of your ruts of boredom and doubt and discontent.
Jon Foreman of Switchfoot wrote a really thoughtful, challenging, and passionate piece about the general debate going on regarding football players taking a knee during the national anthem. Like Jon, I love my country and the national anthem; I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to perform it several times for small local sporting events (including just this morning, as Providence would have it). I also share Jon’s concerns about the way that the decision of some sports players to kneel for the anthem as a form of protesting ethnic injustice in our country has been pigeon-holed as disrespect for the country itself. He put words to those concerns gently, but without compromising. There is more to say about this, and I will probably say it in the week to come on this blog.
Matt Redman and Louie Giglio live-streamed a conversation about worship songwriting on Facebook in anticipation of next year’s LIFT: Collective event at Passion City Church. Matt is the creative genius behind classic worship songs like “The Heart of Worship,” “You Never Let Go,” “10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord),” and “Blessed Be Your Name.” He had some great thoughts to share, especially on the subject of maximizing creative giftings through long-term co-writing relationships.
The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment by Jeremiah Burroughs was a timely, convicting, and encouraging book read for me this week. I may do a more thorough review at some point. Suffice it to say that, while at points he may be a bit too severe, the Puritan author Burroughs (1600-1646) has done believers in Jesus a great service in confronting the evil of grumbling at God, and setting forth the necessity and goodness of being content. I will be sharing some passages on the blog this upcoming week, and may attempt a fuller book review, discussing the big lessons and takeaways from Burroughs’ book, and also (hopefully) delving into some of the cautions and moderating thoughts that I would want to add to his perspective.
I came across this video and article from the Gottman Institute about communication in intimate relationships through an article at the Good Men Project. It’s called “The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse” and it’s about four destructive ways of communicating that predict long-term failure in intimate relationships. A lot of wisdom here, even if from a secular source.
A young Christian woman named Rachel Watson wrote an article called “That Time I Danced Too Close“ (it got featured on the Relevant website) about the need to correct our social expectations in the Christian world regarding matters of sexual attraction and lust. She talks from experience about being taken advantage of by those expectations and makes some very good observations about where they need amendment. Quote: “When we teach men that they can’t control themselves, we demean their dignity as image-bearers and give them a preemptive excuse to abuse others. When we teach women that men can’t control themselves, we communicate that abuse is not only inevitable but acceptable.”
Bonus: I listened to Kristene DiMarco’s new worship album Where His Light Was on Spotify today. I was already familiar with one of the songs (“Take Courage“) from Bethel Worship’s new live album Starlight. Where His Light Was is a really solid worship album. Good words and good melodies. My favorite tracks (other than “Take Courage”) are “Your Love Stands Alone” and “Never Ever.” (I had several genuine “that reminds me of Sara Groves” moments while listening to this record, especially on that last song, and I’m a huge fan of Sara’s music, so that was nice.)
There’s your first Six for Saturday! Thanks for reading!