Live a Bigger Life: Top 5 Curated Resources (August 2019)

With all the resources at our fingertips to help us grow in and live the bigger life Jesus offers, it can sometimes be overwhelming to know where to start and what sources to trust. That’s why we’re curating five great resources each month for you–from books to podcasts to videos and more–that have been helpful

Girl, You’re Not Enough (And That’s the Point): Rachel Hollis’s Message Through the Lens of the Gospel

Rachel Hollis is an impressive person. She’s overcome a dysfunctional family, her brother’s suicide, an eating disorder. She started a high-end event planning business in L.A. with only a high school education, then another business, Chic Media, that has grown to be a multi-million dollar company. She’s given birth to three boys, was a foster parent for a while, and eventually adopted a little girl. She’s quick to share about her fantastic marriage and great sex life. She boxes, runs marathons, lost a lot of weight and has since kept it off. She drinks half her body weight in ounces of water every day and kicked her addiction to Diet Coke. She gets eight hours of sleep a night, wakes up at 5am, meditates, eats a healthy breakfast, and journals her goals and the things she’s thankful for… all before the kids get up. She has published five books and is a New York Times Bestselling author, she travels all over the country for speaking engagements and book promotions, she organizes (and is the keynote speaker of) a massive conference called Rise, and she has millions of followers on social media…

That’s a lot. I’m worn out just writing about it, let alone doing it all. But that’s the gist of most of Rachel Hollis’s work: helping women see that they too can achieve all their dreams. Page one of Girl, Wash Your Face says it loud and clear: “You, and only you, are ultimately responsible for who you become and how happy you are.”

Make This Summer With Your Kids Count

kids togetherAh, summer. For many of us, the word is synonymous with any number of good things: long, sundrenched days, vacations, going to the pool, the smell of freshly cut grass, baseball, etc. But the summer months also offer a great chance for parents to help their kids grow and develop in an intentional manner. Toward that end, my wife Rachel—who does a great job thinking this through for our own three kids—weighs in with today’s guest post. As you read, keep in mind that each family’s goals will be different given all the variables, including the age of kids, work responsibilities, summer school, etc. And remember that reality sometimes falls short of even the best intentions. It’s a lesson we’re taught regularly at our house!

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I love the idea of using summertime with my kids in a way that makes a lasting impact. But when it comes to parenting, if we don’t have some goals in mind for our kids–whether long-term or short-term–it’s easy to lose sight of where we are going. It’s easy to waste the precious little time we have with these young souls in our charge. (I’m speaking from a “guilty as charged” place myself!) That’s why it’s helpful to think through some specific goals for our summer with our children. Here are a few things I’ve learned over the years about that process.

Live a Bigger Life: Top 5 Curated Resources (June 2019)

With all the resources at our fingertips to help us grow in and live the bigger life Jesus offers, it can sometimes be overwhelming to know where to start and what sources to trust. That’s why we’re curating five great resources each month for you–from books to podcasts to videos and more–that have been helpful

Live a Bigger Life: Top 5 Curated Resources (May 2019)

Live a Bigger Life image

With all the resources at our fingertips to help us grow in and live the bigger life Jesus offers, it can sometimes be overwhelming to know where to start and what sources to trust. That’s why we’re curating five great resources each month for you–from books to podcasts to videos and more–that have been helpful to our staff team.

We hope this month’s edition of “Live a Bigger Life” inspires you to take one more step down the path of living in God’s bigger and better story.

May 2019 Contributions:

Content: The Porter’s Gate Worship Project (music album)

Description: These worship songs have influenced me and my kids. We love to sing along, and the truths in the lyrics have encouraged me on hard days.

Contributor: Molly Cover, Administrative Support

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Content: Not By Sight by Jon Bloom (book)

Description: This is a short and extremely easy-to-read book that will encourage your faith. The chapters are short (3-4 pages each) and each one is an imaginative retelling of a common biblical story with hypothetical backstories and possible emotions the characters are going through. Many of these stories will stick in your head as encouragements and over time it helps train you to read your Bible with more emotion and creativity.

Contributor: Justin Garrett, Crossing Students Pastor

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Content: Songs of Jesus by Tim Keller (devotional book)

Description: Since January of last year, my quiet times have most often revolved around Tim Keller’s “Songs of Jesus”, which goes through the psalms and breaks them down into 365 readings. Many psalms involve multiple days’ readings, so I often read the entire psalm, then focus more on the verses that Keller focuses on that day, and journal a prayer around the truths found in those verses. It’s a great way to go deep in this book of the Bible that is full of all of life’s gritty experiences – fear, anxiety, joy, grief, anger, loneliness, doubt. I’ve found that this daily routine helps me to remember and cling to the truth that my walk of faith is more about my committed relationship with a Person than it is about following rules and doing the right things.

Contributor: Shelly Mayer, Small Groups Team and Volunteer Director

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Content: Be Still My Soul by Nancy Guthrie (devotional book)
 
Description: It’s true that all of our lives will crash on the painful rocks of reality at some point. When life becomes difficult, as we face deep disappointment or agonizing loss, we set out on a search to find answers to significant questions: Why would God allow this to happen? What good could come out of this? I refer to this book when I need to remind myself of who God is when I face hardships, and it’s my go-to book that I offer to those wrestling with suffering and loss.
 
 
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Description: Hannah and Erin’s discussions about what it means to follow Christ in our culture are thoughtful and stretching. I love their fun back-and-forth, and their practical insights have encouraged me to think more deeply about what’s going on in the world around me.
 
Contributor: Anna Lynne Frazier, Crossing Twenties Team
 
 
 

Live a Bigger Life: Top 5 Curated Resources (April 2019)

Live a Bigger Life image

With all the resources at our fingertips to help us grow in and live the bigger life Jesus offers, it can sometimes be overwhelming to know where to start and what sources to trust. That’s why we’re curating five great resources each month for you–from books to podcasts to videos and more–that have been helpful to our staff team and others in our church.

We hope this month’s edition of “Live a Bigger Life” inspires you to take one more step down the path of living in God’s bigger and better story.

We Like To Help Poor People, Right?

I’m sure that you are happy to help poor people and are willing to give generously to those in need. Personally, I’m motivated to help a certain kind of poor person more than another.

I like to help poor people who are very responsible and don’t overspend. It’s easy to help the poor person who doesn’t buy junk food and doesn’t own a flat screen television. I’m eager to help the person with financial struggles who works endless hours at a minimum wage job in order to support their family or if he doesn’t have a job fills out applications all day long. I don’t want to help poor people who have vices such as smoking or drinking. I expect that the people I help won’t have a car and walk everywhere to save bus fare, don’t make impulse purchases, and value education.

For the Love of Podcasts: A Few Recommendations for Spring Break

When my son Gideon was born, sleep deprivation and constant feedings put a damper on my lifelong love of reading. I found juggling a book and a baby challenging and my eyes often struggled to stay open when I did. A couple months in, my brain and my heart started to struggle. I didn’t feel

3 Reminders for the Weary Mom

Being a mom can be hard. I’m only five months into this motherhood thing, but the longer I’m in the more I begin to understand what busy moms go through each day and what it really means when everyone tells you how sanctifying this new season of life will be.

Enter into our past weekend: I’m sick with some kind of stomach bug, my husband is away for work and ministry events, and my son becomes a feverish and clingy five month old who no longer cares that sleeping is actually a gracious gift from God. I would love to report that I handled everything with perfect poise and patience toward everyone around me. But it would probably be closer to the truth to say that, in fact, I was once again reminded that my sin runs far deeper than I usually care to admit.

Top 12 Old Testament Verses That Shape My View Of God

The opening line in A. W. Tozer’s Knowledge Of The Holy has stayed with me since I first read it years ago: “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” Because it affects every choice we make and everything we do, he compared a right concept of God to a foundation of a building. “Where it is inadequate or out of plumb,” he wrote, “the whole structure must sooner or later collapse.” Do you have an accurate view of God?

I have been reading a lot in the Old Testament lately. That’s easy for me to do because I love the Old Testament. The stories are rich, the people interesting, and the spiritual truth life changing. So I thought that I would make a list for myself (and share it with you) of the verses in the Old Testament that most shape my view of God.