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Discipleship Isn’t Just for the Pros

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Don’t Be a Bench Warmer When we fill out the roster of a congregation, sometimes we see a star-studded lineup: the prayer warrior, the hymn expert, the family worship specialist, the theologian, the missions maven. Most of us are bench players compared to those guys. And while it’s true that God’s Spirit has distributed different gifts and passions throughout the body, we can often run the risk of using that truth as an excuse for making a comfortable career out of benchwarming and leaving the work of discipling others to the pros. God may not be calling you to become. . .
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Reader Favorites—Top 15 Blog Posts of 2015

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2015 has been a great year for Highlands! We have worked to bring you helpful and insightful content from writers new and old. Here you will find the best of the best as chosen by our readers. Take a scroll through our top fifteen most read posts from the past year, and maybe you’ll find some inspiration for the start of 2016.   1. How Not to Be a Doe-Eyed Pro-Lifer By Erika Schanzenbach We have arrived at a defining moment in the pro-life battle. The gruesome reality of abortion is stripped bare and standing before the watching eyes of. . .
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Help Us Push Back the Darkness!

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Help Us Pursue the Good Life with More People in 2016! A gospel-saturated life marked by godly blessing rather than worldly pleasure is difficult to live out in all circumstances, but always worth pursuing. We aim to bring the message of the good life, the kind of life that is blessed by God and brings salt and light to the culture, to many more people in 2016! Your year-end donations are vital to pushing this work forward! Your partnership with us keeps the microphones hot and the presses rolling. Plans for 2016 What are we doing with year-end gifts? Along. . .
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Grab a 6-Pack of Movies When You Join the Club Today!

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JOIN the CLUB Now & Bring Home a 6-Pack of Movies! LIMITED TIME—October 8-19 When you join the YOU GET EVERYTHING Club you get every resource we produce while you are a member! Join by October 19 and you also get a 6-pack of movies produced by Colin Gunn! Colin’s excellent documentary films challenge our thinking on important cultural issues: HEALTHCARE EDUCATION MEDIA & TECHNOLOGY ROLES of MEN & WOMEN HOMOSEXUALITY Part of living the good life is being able to recognize the bad when we see it. Our culture is deeply confused in many areas. Gunn explores the nuts. . .
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The Door On This Opportunity is Closing!

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Working Together—Building the Kingdom

Friday is the Last Day! We are giving away our entire Basement Tapes Collection (MP3s) to all our new club members in July! That is 160 conversations we have recorded since 2002 on everything from the ABCs of reformed theology to family roles to culture and entertainment (see the collection). Just join the You Get a Tape Club or the You Get Everything Club today and you’ll get all our past conversations and all our future conversations as long as you are a member! We would love to have you join the conversation (see below for more info on the. . .
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Get 160 Basement Tapes Conversations FREE in July!

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Join the Club in July and get the entire Basement Tapes catalog!

In 2002 Highlands started recording The Basement Tapes. What else happened in 2002? A few things have changed since 2002. We can now drive only half as far on the same amount of money (bummer), and there is no longer just one American Idol on the radio (double bummer). The good news is… Highlands is still recording The Basement Tapes. We now have 160 conversations recorded, and continue to add new topics which we send to our club members every month! We have talked about everything from family roles to politics, from theology to literature, from education to food (browse. . .
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God is Scary Beautiful

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God is Scary Beautiful

When God’s Beauty Seems Ugly The problem with God’s beauty is that it often seems so ugly. Not the nice Bible verses, of course. The beauty of holiness—that has an attractive ring to it. We’d like God’s beauty to establish the works of our hands. “One thing I have desired of the Lord, that will I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord” (Psalm 27:4). Yes, yes, let’s cross-stitch this (plus lambs and flowers) and frame it. Wait. There’s more. Mountains and men. . .
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Your Idols Usually Look Like You

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Your Idols Usually Look Like You

What does idolatry look like? As a sin, idolatry usually brings certain concepts or images (no pun intended) to mind. We typically think about statues and pictures as objects of our worship, and that is entirely accurate, though it doesn’t cover it completely. As I’ve said before in sermons, if you think little Buddhas or icons are your only worry with regards to this commandment, you’re reading it wrong. As we meditate on the sin a little deeper, we move into areas such as attitudes, insecurities, possessions, and whacked out priorities, that gain sinful traction and preeminence in our lives.. . .
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Highlands Ministries Then & Now

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Highlands History Highlands Ministries started eighteen years ago as an experiment we called the Highlands Study Center (HSC). The question we pondered back then was this; “What would happen if we attempted to live like we were all on a youth retreat?” That dynamic is something that many of us can relate to—a period of time where learning and applying the scriptures within a closed community of your peers produces a group dedicated to loving and serving the Lord and one another. The downside is that after returning from camp the world we left encroaches and over time, claims us once. . .
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Give the Gift of Encouragement!

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Gift Memberships to Highlands Ministries Clubs!

Daily Faithfulness Changes the World We love our partnership with our club members! Our goal is to give into their lives with the teaching we produce. Our members apply this teaching and go into the world living more biblical lives every day. This is how the world changes, daily faithfulness by families just like yours, transforming your families, churches, and culture to reflect the beauty of our Lord. Our club members are a valuable part of this ministry. Every month we send them resources like Every Thought Captive magazine and our conversational audio series The Basement Tapes which seek to. . .
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Lay Aside Lazy Parenting

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Lay Aside Lazy Parenting

Parenting & Athletics For an overwhelming majority of my life I have been involved in athletics. I readily acknowledge that there are bad aspects surrounding sports, both professional and amateur, but I also believe there is a tremendous amount of good and much can be learned from them — both through participation and consideration. I have often said that Major League Baseball is a microcosm of our culture. Combine this with Henry VanTil’s astute observation that “culture is religion externalized,” and it follows that MLB is a microcosm of our culture’s religion externalized. Think about that for a while. Even. . .
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How to Turn Your Heart Toward Your Children

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New Covenant Promise The fourth chapter of Malachi is a chapter of special promise in a prophetic book that usually only gets referenced during budget time or in the midst of capital stewardship campaigns (using chapter 2 as its text). Chapter 4 primarily sets the stage for the coming of John the Baptist as the herald for the coming of King Jesus. However, it also holds a special promise for families in the new covenant. Malachi promises that: Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and dreadful day of the Lord. And he will turn the. . .
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Judging Others

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Judging Others

Judging Others Prematurely C.S. Lewis wrote an essay entitled On Criticism. As an author and reviewer himself he attempts to set some ground rules that the reviewer should abide by. He asserts that one should be careful about casting judgment prematurely. For instance some reviewers assume a fictional work refers to personal or historical events or particular people. Then from his armchair confidently critiques the author’s work without research beyond his assumptions; the public applauds and gasps in amazement at his insight when in fact the reviewer is absolutely mistaken. Why is this? Because, as people we tend to cultivate. . .
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How to Repent

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How to Repent: A Story Guide

A Story Guide for How to Repent When R.C. asked me to write on this topic, I wasn’t sure whether or not to be pleased. You see, when I am given an assignment, I immediately try and evaluate whether I know very much about the topic. I guess I should be pleased. I am quite experienced on the topic of repentance, having had to do a lot of it in my life. However, doing a lot of it and enjoying it are two very different things hence my corresponding displeasure. I only see one semi-honorable way out. Take the “third. . .
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Living in Community

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Living in Community is Hard Work A wise man once said to me that “living in community is hard work.” Longsuffering, humility, repentance and forgiveness are easy when they remain as rhetoric or ideologies. In practice, they stretch us beyond our own strength. But if we truly love one another then we don’t have to work so hard at it. Sins are covered, bones are broken by soft words, feelings aren’t lying around for neighbors to trip on, and everyone is committed to speak the truth in love knowing the vital connection of the two. We are, after all, the. . .
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God’s Providence Gives Hope

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God's Providence Brings Hope

God’s Providence When it Looks Hopeless There is a lot of fear out there over what the government will do next. Will we be taxed insensible? Will our guns and gold be seized? Will homeschooling remain legal? Must we obtain more registrations and numbers from the central government? Are the banks going bankrupt? Will the dollar devalue into uselessness? Things look very grim. But we are already taxed insensible, gold was already seized once (in 1933), homeschooling has often been treated as illegal, we already have a universal government registration number, the banks have been essentially bankrupt for decades, the. . .
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Words, Meanings, & Gender Neutral Pronouns

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Words, Meanings, & Gender Neutral Pronouns

Gender Neutral Pronouns Deconstruct Language In a 1981 essay on abortion titled A View of Abortion To Offend Everybody, Catholic doctor and novelist Walker Percy laments the “fobbing off of rhetoric” in the abortion debate. He also laments, particularly because he is a novelist, the “chronic misuse of words” that colored the debate at the time, and still does. Percy considers it his duty to maintain the validity and fidelity of words, as a writer who “trafficks in words and meanings.” This defense of rightly understood and articulated language within social and spiritual debate by pro-lifer Walker Percy concerning the. . .
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What to Wear to Church

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We Don’t Know What to Wear to Church Anymore To everything there is a season and a time . . . and yes, there is a time to dress up. The need to suggest such a thing is an indictment on our casual-minded, downgraded, culture. But when people now wear their pajamas to the mall and think little of it, it’s time to reverse this cultural digression before our worship service looks more like a slumber party than the ultimate wedding ceremony that it is. When I was a kid, my parents regularly took me to the symphony. Everyone dressed. . .
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Is it Game On? Video Games & the Christian Man

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If you have gone into any store that sells electronics or seen any ads on TV or online, you are probably already aware that there are new video game consoles on the way. Or you may pay no attention to such things, in which case I am informing you that there are new, very pricey, and cutting edge gaming systems planned for release this Christmas. And I am not buying one. A brief preface for the following. Obviously, as with any form of entertainment, all is not wonderful in video game land, where there are horrid games and endless hours. . .
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Dig Deeper, Grow Stronger

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Join the Club & Dig Deeper into God's Word

Dear Friends, Living faithfully before God and under His word in a culture working to tear down Christian families at every turn is a challenge. Our bright hope is in digging deep into God’s word and feeding on His promises for us and for our children. He is faithful. Highlands Ministries produces resources to help your faith grow, encouraging biblical faithfulness in all areas of life. There is no part of ourselves Christ leaves unclaimed, no area untouched by the truth of His word. The deeper our roots sink into biblical truth the stronger we become for the work of. . .
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