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CHRISTIAN NEWS 

An excerpt from 'A Beautiful Disaster: Finding Hope in the Midst of Brokenness.'

There is a silence we choose. Our retreats into our cells of silence and solitude still the noise pollution in our lives so that we might eventually be still. Quieted enough to hear the whispers of God. Still enough to feel the Holy Spirit winds blowing through our lives and to observe the effects of the Spirit winds all around us. We retreat in hopes of delight, in hopes of tasting the good, the true, and the beautiful.

Our eyes adjust. We acquire night vision so that even on the darkest of nights, we're eventually able to see the glory and faithfulness of God. We're able to clearly see the beautiful truths concealed by the helter-skelter of a too-busy, disintegrated daily life.

Our hidden life—how we live in obscurity—is what shapes our character. In this intentional pilgrimage into the desert, our battered, bruised, and banged-around selves can finally crawl out of the fetal position. This is a space where we stretch out to reinvigorate the parts of us that have atrophied. It's where the stress fractures of our lives heal. Here we gain our footing and strength. Here we can finally breathe freely while silently seeking understanding. This cell is simultaneously a hospital for the soul and a training ground for holiness.

Our intentional pilgrimage is not only a form of self-care but also a form of communal care. It demonstrates our deep concern for others. If we truly love others or seek to love others, we'll detach ourselves from them for a while, trusting that our time alone with God will sensitize us to their needs and concerns. Solitary experiences with God form in us the kind of character that loathes sinning against another. Therein we find the motivation to do good to others, including ...

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Despite our negativity, most couples aren’t doomed for divorce.

For decades, Americans have been hearing that the divorce rate in the U.S. is around 50 percent. And everywhere I travel as a speaker and researcher, I see a deep cultural discouragement about marriage today.

Conventional wisdom also holds that marriage is hard. We hear counselors and pastors use that term and picture most couples silently suffering in unfulfilling partnerships.

It feels like that college freshmen orientation where you’re told to look to your left and right and realize that one of you won’t be here in four years. We essentially hear, “Two out of four of you won’t be here. And the rest of you will be miserable. But have a nice marriage!”

It makes couples look around and wonder which of their friends is headed towards inevitable failure. It makes singles question why they should get married to begin with. And it sure makes it all too easy for a struggling couple to give up, when they think half of everyone else couldn’t make it either.

Turns out, though, so much of what we believe about marriage and divorce isn’t even true. For the last eight years, I’ve been intensively investigating marriage and divorce research, and I summarize what I discovered in The Good News About Marriage: Debunking Discouraging Myths about Marriage and Divorce.

I have seen in the research what every marriage counselor knows intimately: divorce isn’t the greatest threat to marriage. Discouragement is. A sense of “why bother” is. And for too long, our confidence in marriage has been undermined by persistent misunderstandings and damaging myths.

The Good News About Marriages

The divorce rate for society as a whole – the percentage of marriages that ...

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An excerpt from 'A Beautiful Disaster: Finding Hope in the Midst of Brokenness.'

There is a silence we choose. Our retreats into our cells of silence and solitude still the noise pollution in our lives so that we might eventually be still. Quieted enough to hear the whispers of God. Still enough to feel the Holy Spirit winds blowing through our lives and to observe the effects of the Spirit winds all around us. We retreat in hopes of delight, in hopes of tasting the good, the true, and the beautiful.

Our eyes adjust. We acquire night vision so that even on the darkest of nights, we're eventually able to see the glory and faithfulness of God. We're able to clearly see the beautiful truths concealed by the helter-skelter of a too-busy, disintegrated daily life.

Our hidden life—how we live in obscurity—is what shapes our character. In this intentional pilgrimage into the desert, our battered, bruised, and banged-around selves can finally crawl out of the fetal position. This is a space where we stretch out to reinvigorate the parts of us that have atrophied. It's where the stress fractures of our lives heal. Here we gain our footing and strength. Here we can finally breathe freely while silently seeking understanding. This cell is simultaneously a hospital for the soul and a training ground for holiness.

Our intentional pilgrimage is not only a form of self-care but also a form of communal care. It demonstrates our deep concern for others. If we truly love others or seek to love others, we'll detach ourselves from them for a while, trusting that our time alone with God will sensitize us to their needs and concerns. Solitary experiences with God form in us the kind of character that loathes sinning against another. Therein we find the motivation to do good to others, including ...

Continue reading...

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39696 Highway 41 | PO Box 2403 | Oakhurst, CA 93644 | PH: 559-683-6742 | FAX: 559-683-6110