Blogs

Our blogs offer thoughtful content from a variety of writers that will help you live with simple focus on Christ and His kingdom. This feed will give you all our newest content from all our blogs. These posts, we hope, will help to separate our thinking from the surrounding worldliness of our culture, and live deliberately at home, in the church, and in the world!

Links to each of our blogs may be found in the left sidebar. You may also browse all our blogs by topic by clicking the link in the right sidebar.

Raised Up

By in Highlands Blog on

  I rolled out of bed this morning still feeling heavy from last nights dinner. Smash-burgers, topped with jalapeño pimento cheese and served with a side of sliced potatoes fried in beef fat, will do that to you. I hit the shower at 5:30am and was sipping a cup of Sumatra before the day dawned and it dawned drowsily with cool temperatures, a misty rain and an overcast sky. The weather wasn’t offering any perk to my morning and neither were the contents of my French press. This is the kind of day where you feel like you never really. . .
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Filed under Faith

Fishing for Men

By in Highlands Blog on

“Follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” Jesus’ first call to discipleship in Mark’s Gospel compared His ministry to the work Simon, Andrew, James, and John knew very well. He saw fishermen at work and made a ready comparison. But this call also connected what Jesus was doing to the Old Testament hopes found at the end of Ezekiel’s visions. The prophet had foreseen God’s people returning from exile and rebuilding the temple to restore right worship. Out of that rebuilt temple flowed a river of life and Ezekiel 47:10 talked about fishermen standing beside. . .
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How Christians Should Sleep

By in Highlands Blog on

When it comes to the subject of rest, believers in Jesus Christ should be having a phenomenal experience every night—unless you have a newborn in which case you have a glorious reason to be awaken several times by little baby sounds and hunger cries. And there is also that sacrifice of slumber due to staying up with someone who is ill. Also the necessity laid upon the student whose term paper is due and let’s not forget those first-responders who put out fires and the police who guard our neighborhoods when darkness falls. There are many other scenarios as well.. . .
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Filed under Personal Growth

Community Life is Painful

By in Highlands Blog on

I was perturbed and couldn’t ascertain the reason at first. All day I’d been in a funk and with just a little reflection, the truth was revealed. I was angry that some news had penetrated my world and for the umpteenth time, my peace was broken. It wasn’t the right reaction but a common one for me as part of a close-knit community of believers. The first thing to know when you are seeking to become a part of a community of believers is that you are greatly increasing the number of people who can ruin your day. When you. . .
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Filed under Community

Are You Angry with “Those People”?

By in Highlands Blog on

These days, as much as I have ever witnessed in my life, are typified by anger. While much of it may be directed at our President (either the past one or the present one), much of the anger I see is directed at larger groups of people. These groups, whoever they may be, may represent values that we stand in opposition to. Or they may represent a group that we perceive as hurtful to us. It could be that our anger towards them lies in the fact that they just plain irritate us. It may be the rich, the poor,. . .
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Profanity & the Love of God

By in Highlands Blog on

People use to say “For the love of God” a lot more than they do now. You can still find it mostly in old books and old movies. It is a variant of the desperation or exasperation of, For Christ’s sake! and other profanities. When this phrase is used, for example, “For the love of God, stop torturing that accordion!” the motivation isn’t, as you might imagine for the person to whom it is directed, to actually love God. No, it is more of a final appeal. “Don’t do (____) for me or for yourself or even for all of. . .
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Filed under Culture, Social Issues

The Discipline of Children

By in Highlands Blog on

It is one of life’s most disturbing moments. Our beautiful child, the apple of our eye, looks into that same eye and lies to us. He, without shame, violates the trust that we have built up for so long. Our instinct is to recoil in horror. And that is appropriate because sin is that wicked and the harm a small child can inflict upon their parent is proof of that fact. Like with Adam, that one act threatens to cast them out of the paradise of our heart. Restoration The child must then be disciplined because our God has commanded. . .
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Filed under Parenting

Blessed Frailty

By in Highlands Blog on

Dependent Our great and loving God created us with a built-in frailty. Our bodies reveal to us hour by hour our dependence on Him to sustain our life. Ignoring for a moment our beating heart and our inability to keep that happening, we are otherwise forced to pause to consume calories at least three times during the day and at the end of just sixteen hours of daily life, we need to rest for a full eight. Because we are not conscious during our rest, we don’t fully appreciate how frail we are. Eight hours of rest to propel us. . .
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Filed under Faith, Sanctification

Beware the Mantra of the Unbelieving Life

By in Highlands Blog on

Submission is a dirty word to contemporary ears. It has considerably more than four letters, but often gets a more negative reaction than its abbreviated counterparts. We think it means defeat, which it doesn’t unless we are submitting to a loser. Luckily we already know who the Winner in time and eternity is, so we need not suffer that embarrassment. Much to the distaste of defiant grumblers, Jesus never loses. Questioning God Still, the world wants us to feel self-conscious for simply believing God and doing what He commands. They think that instinctive submission is naive and they proceed to. . .
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Filed under Faith, Social Issues

Planting Seeds in Your Children

By in Highlands Blog on

Parenting is a challenge on the very best of days, even for those whose chief aim is just to keep the kids alive for twenty-four hours. Trying to disciple a child at the same time as we try to help them be civilized, clean, helpful, and educated, is often overwhelming. What Christian parent hasn’t daily fretted about the missed prayers or times of deep talk or catechism and Scripture memorization? Missed days turns into weeks because Mom is pregnant and not feeling well and life becomes an hourly act of survival rather than what we always imagined—all the wee ones. . .
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Beware of False Friends

By in Highlands Blog on

There is an old missionary adage that goes something like, “Pay close attention to the first person who enthusiastically greets you when you get off the boat. That will be the first person who will try to kill you.” This saying resonates with us because we have all known folks who have received us warmly but then turn against us without warning or provocation. Of course this does not mean that we should view every warm enthusiastic person with the same level of suspicion or cynicism. Many people are genuinely friendly, receive us quickly and are without guile. But that. . .
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Filed under Relationships

God Talks to Us

By in Highlands Blog on

I think of it as awesome that God talks to us. Of all the persons on the planet that you would like to meet and get to know, wouldn’t the Creator of the universe be your first choice? Because God speaks to man, we can know why we are here, what life is all about, what is after all of this because we do see leaves change and fall to the ground. If somehow God were seated next to us on a flight, what might we ask Him that He hasn’t already revealed? By that I mean that He has. . .
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Dredging Up the Sand

By in Highlands Blog on

Withstanding the Tide The sea is always trying to take back the beach, the daily tides are complicit in this reclamation project. It’s not work for the impatient wave, but for those with a bit of resolve, the rewards are inevitable. The beach ultimately returns from whence it came. Some of our seaside friends know that they have only a few years before the ocean reclaims both the sand and perhaps even their vacation homes. We fight against it as best we can and dredge up sand from the water and haul it back and give ourselves a few more. . .
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No One is Safe…with God

By in Highlands Blog on

Prosperity for the Righteous? We are told early on that old man Job had it all. He had a big happy family, a prosperous business, and was obviously a public figure in that he was “the greatest of all the people of the East.” Along with that, he never missed going to church. From what we know, he was conscientious regarding the spiritual state of his children, he had built strong friendships with others, and he was charitable toward the needy. To top it all off, the Lord Himself, said of Job, “there is none like him on the earth,. . .
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Are You a Yes Dad or a No Dad?

By in Highlands Blog on

I have spent no small amount of time over the last few years dissecting my parenting decisions when my children were younger, and personally flogging myself for the mistakes that I now see very clearly. I’m sure that many of you do this from time to time. In my case, it seems to have become one of my favorite hobbies. It causes a lot of wear and tear on the self-image, but it’s a lot cheaper than golf. When you realize a mistake in your parenting philosophy or practice, after you confess it and repent to God and your children,. . .
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Filed under Family, Parenting

When Trauma Hits Close to Home

By in Highlands Blog on

Wrapped in a white cloth with only his blood-covered face visible, my older brother Rich lay unconscious in the hospital bed. Wires and tubes protruded from under the cloth, making it almost impossible to identify him. “Is this Rich?” asked the neurosurgeon, standing in the doorway behind us. “That’s him, alright,” said my Dad. Looking down at my eighteen-year-old brother, I wondered how my Dad could be so sure. The blood and gashes marring his face made him look like someone else. “OK,” said the doctor, “we’re going to take him into surgery now that you’ve identified him. We’ll show. . .
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Does Commuting Kill Community? (pt. 2)

By in Highlands Blog on

Life is simpler when you live where you worship and work where you live. Geographically separating these three strands of life introduces all sorts of complications that take a great deal of common sense and godly wisdom to untangle. Instead of arbitrarily settling on work or home or church to be the center of your life, or choosing on the basis of convenience or high-minded principles, Proverbs 27:23 encourages us to “know well the condition of your flocks, and give attention to your herds.” The people in your household matter most. If they are flourishing even in the wild ride. . .
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Filed under Community, Family, Work

On Turning 50

By in Highlands Blog on

Landmark Birthdays I’m young for my age and so all year till now, I’ve been watching my former classmates turn fifty and finally it’s my turn. Many of these same friends have Facebook pages filled with pictures of them with their college freshmen or even recent college graduates. I’m on a different path; Lindsay and I have five children and the oldest is but seven. Yes, I had a late start. And yes, she is much younger than I. Birthdays like this—when the AARP solicitations begin—are a time for reflection. I’m not at all where I thought I’d be at. . .
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Filed under Family, Marriage, Parenting, Work

Is Sexting Okay for Christians?

By in Highlands Blog on

When God arranged the first marriage in Genesis chapter two, there is the most interesting of comments that follows: Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. What is sort of strange and wonderful about this is that, since Genesis 1:1, we have had only historic narrative and now, for the first time, we have commentary. At this point in the narrative, there were no sons and daughters, fathers or mothers. But the comment is inserted by Moses for all future couples and however that marriage is. . .
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Filed under Family, Marriage
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