Growing through Knowing in 2 Peter

“May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.” (2 Peter 1:2)

Grace and peace often open the NT letters as blessings found and sought in Jesus Christ.[1] To have these multiplied in our life is to experience the favor of God and a flourishing life in Christ. Peter opens both of his letters with this prayer that grace and peace would be multiplied to his readers (1 Peter 1:2; 2 Peter 1:2). Or, as he says when he closes this second letter, he wants them to “grow in grace” (2 Peter 5:18).

How does this happen? What multiplies God’s grace and peace in our lives and churches? What causes us to grow, mature, and see the Spirit bear fruit in our lives? It’s knowing God (2 Peter 1:2). 

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Favorite Quotes from Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry

If I had to pick my favorite fictional book, it would be a neck and neck finish between two Wendell Berry novels. It might depend on which I read most recently. But the two finalists would be Jayber Crow and Hannah Coulter.

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Seven Simple Ways to Grow through Your Church

Most people want to know the magic formula for integrating into the life of a church. They desire to feel known, to grow, and to move from an outsider to an insider.

While a hospitable church will provide on-ramps for assimilating people, my experience has taught me that fully integrating into the life of a church ultimately falls on the individual. Are they willing to take an intentional step or two to get involved, or do they watch from a distance, staying in the crowd without ever trying to get into the game?

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November Gratitude Reading Plan: The Psalms

November is always a great time to leverage the national focus on gratitude by leaning into thanksgiving. One way to keep gratitude on your mind and tongue is a reading plan. While The Grumbler’s Guide to Giving Thanks has a 30-Day Challenge which includes a reading plan, and you can find a daily devotional for each of those days here, below is another 30-Day Reading Plan. This one is exclusively in the Psalms. Each day, the chapter will includes themes related to gratitude, ingratitude, or thanksgiving. My hope is these psalms can lead you into giving thanks this November.

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Genesis Reading Plan

Here’s a Genesis Reading Plan that will take you sixty days, roughly a chapter a day with rest days built in. You can use these questions to ask when reading the Bible.

And here are a few recommended studies and commentaries on Genesis.

What does it mean that God is “simple”?

God’s attributes are not like characteristics that are parts of who he is, as if he can act out his attribute of kindness in one moment but do apart from his attribute of justice (as an example). His attributes aren’t separate from who he is, nor do we separate his attributes from one another. It’s not as if he scores a 97 on kindness, 85 on patience, and 75 on gentleness. He is not a conflicted being where his mercy and wrath are at odds with one another. God is all his attributes perfectly and seamlessly.

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It’s hard to believe it, but today marks one year from when The Grumbler’s Guide to Giving Thanks was published by Moody Publishers. Thank you to all of you who have read it (or listened to the audiobook). I’ve been greatly encouraged by the interactions, feedback, comments, and conversations. Once a book releases, you know little about who’s reading it and what they might be gleaning from it, so it’s always nice to hear what people learn from it or find helpful in it.

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Your Children Are Arrows

Children are a gift from God. We love and treasure them. Children are also sheep needing shepherded. Parents must know, feed, protect, lead, and care for their kids.

But did you know the Bible also describes children as arrows? “Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth” (Psalm 127:4). This metaphor gets at the missional aspect of raising a child. God wants us to love and enjoy them but also to train them so they can be missionaries wherever they go. God doesn’t want us to hoard them or shelter them but to release them. Parents think about their kids in terms of what they mean to us or what we want from them and for them, but we often neglect what God intends to do in them and through them.

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