The Buschel Digest: October 2017

Happy 500th Reformation Day and Happy Halloween! I hope you and yours have a safe and memory making 24 hours filled with candy and fun. This is the post where I share anything noteworthy I have been reading this month. Lots of great blog posts below to ponder on and read from this month.

Don’t Waste the Darkness

“These are the lessons that Halloween can teach us: the darkness is real, it’s relative, and it’s routed. But this is why, traditionally, All Hallows Eve was followed by All Hallows Day (also known as All Saints Day). That’s how it was meant to be. In modern times, though, we seem to have lost our confidence in the day.”

The Gospel Coalition Reformation 500 Statement

“Wherever we find Scripture alone as the highest and final authority, grace alone as the only hope for resurrecting spiritually dead sinners, faith alone as the only instrument by which we are joined to Christ and justified by the imputation of his righteousness, Christ alone as the only atoning sacrifice for sin, and God alone as the ultimate object of our worship—wherever we find these truths sung, savored, and celebrated, we have reason to rejoice in the Reformation.”

Let’s Get Real About Women’s Discipleship

I really appreciated this. “I know too many women who are desperately holding out for a discipler that looks more like a unicorn than an actual human being. In our minds we sometimes conjure up this image of what sort of woman we want pouring wisdom into us: at least twenty years older, maybe she’s the pastor’s wife or women’s ministry leader; she’s got kids, preferably a lot of them. Yet this older woman with a pastor husband, a women’s ministry to run, and a bunch of kids to raise can magically find the time to meet with us three times a week at a coffee shop to read the Bible.”

Where Are You on the Adultery Trail?

After reading this extract from Tim Chester’s new book, 2 Samuel for You, I added it to my book list for next year. Here he reflects on how physical adultery springs out of two other, less recognised adulteries.

Letter to a Church Member (or a Letter to Myself)

“Your church is here, not to give you a good self-image, but to give you a true self-image.”

God is With You in Your Panic Attack

As a person who has suffered from panic attacks in the past this post offered many helpful suggestions that I have used myself. “God hasn’t given me a shortcut through panic. He cares more for my long-term growth than for quick fixes that bring momentary relief but leave me unchanged. Along the way, He has graciously equipped me with some very helpful handles—ways to turning to Him physically and emotionally—that minimize the frequency and severity of my panic attacks. (I’m not a doctor, so I’ll leave issues of medication, exercise, and diet in the hands of the professionals.)”

How a Church Can Help or Harm a Newly Adoptive Family

I really love this honest post on ways that church members and attendees can be a blessing to newly adoptive families. There are great nuggets of truth here. If you are unfamiliar with the “cocooning” that takes place after adoption and how to be a blessing to a family walking this path this is a must read! Plus there is a helpful list at the end of what not to say to an adoptive family.

Is it Really God Speaking to You?

I’ve prayed about this and I really feel like God told me that it would be okay. Those were the words that I heard when a young lady informed me that she was leaving her husband in order to live with another dude. She was happier with the other guy. She knew that God didn’t want her to be unhappy and so as she prayed that voice in her head confirmed that she had permission from the Almighty.”

Christian Yoga is Happening and Old School Yogi’s aren’t Thrilled

“Yoga’s been shown to be good for the mind and body. Now, devout Christians are making yoga good for their souls, too. In order to feel comfortable taking to the mats, churchgoers have had to make the centuries-old practice gel better with their belief system.”

To read why I stopped teaching “Chrisitan” yoga click HERE.


The Buschel Digest: September 2017

How is it the last day in September? This year is going so fast! This is the post where I share anything noteworthy I have been reading this month. I discovered an amazing fiction series that I devoured and as always there are several articles from other blogs. Happy reading!

Rethinking “God Hates The Sin But Loves The Sinner”

“The Bible teaches that every person is guilty of crimes against God and deserves to be punished, but that message doesn’t give non-believers a warm, fuzzy feeling. So, we attempt to soften the blow of this bad news with a cliché.”

10 Family Worship Ideas For Busy Families 

This is a great list. For reference our family reads the same story out of the The Gospel Story Bible for a week (I also use the companion book Old Story New) and we go over a new question each week from New City Catechism. This takes about 15 minutes during breakfast.

I’d Really Just Like To Be In Control

“I am anxious when I am not in control.  Yet I am never in control, I only deceive myself into thinking I am.  Which is probably one of the reasons why God continually puts things into my life to remind myself of this fact.  Like the Israelites in the desert, often I don’t trust the manna will come the next day, even after years and years of experiencing it.  Even though he’s promised it.  And proven himself trustworthy.”

10 Things You Should Know About Chrisitan Meditation 

“Unlike eastern meditation, which advocates mental passivity, Christian meditation calls on us to actively exert our mental energy. This is nowhere better stated than by Paul in Philippians 4:8. Here he encourages us to “let our minds dwell on” whatever is “true,” “honorable,” “right,” “pure,” “lovely,” and of “good repute.” Those things that are “excellent” and “worthy of praise” are to be the targets of our mental aim. It isn’t enough merely to acknowledge that things and ideas of moral and mental excellence are important. Merely affirming such truths and virtues will avail little in a time of testing. We must energetically reckon, take into account, and give deliberative weight to these things. Our minds must be captivated by them in such a way that the tawdry, sleazy, fictitious, and fanciful fluff of the world loses its appeal.”

Online Tribalism Threatens Women’s Ministry

“Discipleship requires more than inspiration—it requires confrontation. But because online platforms rely on maintaining consumer goodwill and group cohesion, it’s difficult to offer an alternative perspective without unsettling the tribe—the very tribe on which the entire platform rests.”

Out Of a Dream (Sandy Cove Series Book 1) by Rosemary Hines

This was such a good series. Yes, I read all 8 books this month. I was really sick for several days and laid in bed and just read. It would have been amazing had I not been sick. This series weaves a the story of a family over the years and the stories transition smoothly from one book to the next. The characters were relatable and felt like good friends by the end of the first book. These novels deal with issues such as the prevalence of New Age beliefs and practices in today’s society, the tragedy of suicide in families of all walks of life, the struggles of children from broken homes, the heartache of infertility as well as unwanted pregnancies and abortions, and the difficulties of aging. And if you have Kindle Unlimited read can read them for free!

Dark Power Collection (Forbidden Doors) by Bill Myers

I had read this series when I was in junior high and thought I had saved the books. Unfortunately, I think they were lost in one of our moves and I really wanted to read them again. I was surprised to find that the author had combined several of these stories into different collections under the Forbidden Doors title. These books freaked me out in a good way when I was younger and really educated me on the occult, witchcraft, reincarnation, ouija boards, and shamanism. I am constantly thinking ahead to when our kids become older and how Josh and I can have ways to start more in depth conversations and to continue our children to think about these topics from a Biblical worldview. If you have later elementary school or middle school aged children these are faced paced, short novels, that are entertaining and educational at the same time.

The Forgotten Trinity by James White

This is a short and easy to understand theological book on the topic of the Trinity. I learned so much reading this book and it made me dig into my Bible deeper. Which is always a good thing. I gained new insights on scripture, learned about the early church, and have more love for God’s truth. Worth the read!


The Buschel Digest: August 2017

This is the post where I share anything noteworthy I have been reading this last month. While I did read several fiction books this month there was nothing overly exciting to share in that department. I did happen across several blog posts however that stuck out to me. I hope you enjoy them also.

I am still plugging away in my Bible reading. With just three books away from completing the Old Testament I hope to finish the New Testament by the end of the year. Last year I started with the NT and finished with the OT. I included an excellent sermon from our church this past weekend to finish up this post.

Additional Reading: What I Learned from Reading the Bible

Maybe It’s Not an Obstacle

Read this. Great reminder and perspective on difficult and challenging events. “What if your difficult events today are actually not obstacles, but arrows pointing you back to Jesus? What if they’re not standing in the way of your success for today, but instead reminding you to come to the One who defines true success? What if God actually put those events in your life to remind you that you can’t do this?

I Don’t Understand Christians Watching Game of Thrones

Pastor Kevin DeYoung writes, “Whenever there is a new episode, my Twitter feed overflows with people talking about Game of Thrones. First off, I’m always amazed that this many people have HBO. But second, and much more importantly, I’m always amazed that a number of people I respect–smart people, serious Christians, good conservative thinkers–are obviously watching (and loving) the series.”

Be sure to also read his follow up post One More Time on ‘Game of Thrones’ where he responds to the  numerous comments he received. For the record I agree with Pastor DeYoung.

God Will Give You More than You Can Handle

“Christians can make the strangest claims when comforting those who are suffering. What do you say to someone whose life is falling apart? If you have but few precious minutes with a person who’s lost a job, home, spouse, child, or all sense of purpose, what comfort do you give?

We might turn to conventional wisdom instead of Scripture and end up saying something like, “Don’t worry, this wouldn’t happen in your life if God didn’t think you could bear it.” The sufferer may object, head shaking and hands up. But you insist, “Look, seriously, the Bible promises God won’t ever give you more in life than you can handle.” There it is—conventional wisdom masquerading as biblical truth. You’ve promised what the Bible never does.”

He (and They) Must Not Be a Novice

“The Christian world seems able to support a nearly infinite number of books, programs, and ministries related to marriage and parenting. Few of us feel adequate to the challenges of raising children or loving a spouse. We address our inadequacies by turning to experts, lining up en masse to sit under their teaching and benefit from their wisdom. Yet a surprising number of these are written, founded, or run by people who have very little experience. Their scant experience makes them less than ideal as teachers or mentors, for time has not yet given them humility. In fact, I’d wager that the longer you parent, the less confident you feel in so much of your parenting; the longer you’re married, the more inadequate you feel in guiding anyone else.”

Death on Demand? Dutch Euthanasia Moves in Disturbing Direction

This was truly haunting to read. We as a society are creeping dangerously close to an urban “utopia” that has striking similarities to Lois Lowry’s book The Giver.

“In 2002, the Netherlands was the first country in the world to legalize euthanasia. Today, Dutch euthanasia is moving away from “straightforward” cases where a patient has a terminal illness like cancer—and into more oblique territory.

Since 2009, there has been a significant increase in euthanasia for patients with dementia and psychiatric illness. Doctors are also more open to euthanizing elderly patients who have an “accumulation of old-age complaints” rather than an actual terminal illness.”

No Believing Without Following

No Believing Without Following from Compass Christian Church on Vimeo.

We had the privilege of hearing the new Pastor at our satellite campus preach this weekend. The sermon series we are in right now focuses on the journey to discover whether we’re a follower of Jesus, or just a fan. Jesus inevitably asks each of us to consider whether we simply admire Him from a far, or take up our cross and follow Him daily. Our answer to this question determines our eternal destiny! This was an amazing sermon and I know it will be a blessing to you to listen to Pastor Gilbert’s testimony and see the transformative power of the gospel.