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Recent Reading

Last week I dipped into the world of non-fiction and read Vince Flynn's book Act of Treason. Awesome book. I know I've mentioned Flynn on the blog before. he is a MN based author who writes political thrillers in the line of Tom Clancey. I couldn't put the book down and slammed through about 400 pages in 4 days.

This week I picked up a copy of George M. Marsden's authobiography called Jonathon Edwards, A Life. Jonathon Edwards is thoughts of by many as the greatest American, Reformed, Christian theologians ever. His writings and sermons played a central role in one of the biggest religious revivals America has ever seen, and they continue to influence evangelical Christianity today. I'm looking forward to meeting and getting to know the man whom John Piper affectionately calls his "best dead friend."
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5 Reasons I Won't Let My Kids Wear Clothes with Skulls on Them

Yesterday I threw out a poll question on my Facebook and Twitter pages.  The poll question asked, "Should Christians wear attire with skulls on it?"  I received some great comments from people with a variety of opinions.  You can read the comments on my timeline from 8/8/13.

My opinion is that Christians should not wear clothes with skulls on them.

I don't have one specific Bible verse that I can use to prove my point.  Jesus never said, "Thou shalt not wear clothes with skulls."  I do however think there are number of conclusions that can be drawn from Scripture that support my opinion.

1.  Jesus does care about the clothes we wear.
I don't believe God's people are free to wear whatever they want.  From the Old Testament all the way through the New Testament you can find Biblical language related to clothes.  There are laws in Leviticus about clothes.  God instructed the OT priests on what to wear don't believe God's people are free to wear wh…

How Stephanie and I Celebrated 15 Years of Marriage

Yesterday Stephanie and I celebrated 15 years of marriage! 
To kick off the festivities, on Wednesday afternoon Stephanie bought a new car from Harry Browns in Faribault. She said good goodbye to the minivan and bought a 2014 Dodge Journey. She picked out a great new vehicle and her dad Ralph channeled his inner New Yorker to haggle us a great price.
We started the day Thursday driving to St. Peter to pick up Isabelle from the "Gustie" Basketball and Leadership camp. She spent 4 days there learning, practicing and having a blast. We celebrated together as a family with some Godfather's Pizza!
After getting back to Northfield I dropped the kids off at some friend's houses so Stephanie and I could be alone together. Having great friends who help with the kids is such a blessing. 
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How to Make an ISTJ Calm and Happy

When it is time to write a sermon I have found it is most effective for me to get out of the house and go to a coffee shop.  My mind is clearer and my focus is sharper there.  I am usually more productive.

The increase in output may be because, as pastor and author Mark Batterson often says, "change of place + change of pace = change in perspective."  However, I think something else is influencing me.  When I am out of my house I am not distracted by messes, dishes, house chores, or clutter; my mind is completely free to focus on the task I want to accomplish.

 In addition to Batterson's creativity axiom, here are a couple little formulas that I've found hold true for me:

Cleanliness = Creativity and Calmness.
Organized home = Organized mind.

Simply put, I function best when my environment feels under control.  This feeling of control comes in many different forms.  I feel like things are under control when my surroundings are clean and organized.  I feel like thin…