046 – Learning – Spiritual Disciplines Series

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“An examination of the word disciple reveals that it means to be not only ‘a follower’ of Christ but also ‘a learner.’ To follow Christ and become more like Him, we must engage in the Spiritual Discipline of learning.” – Donald Whitney

The Spiritual Discipline of Learning

“God has made us with a harmony of heart and head, of thought and action. The more we know Him the more we are able to love Him. The more we love Him the more we seek to know Him. To be central in our hearts He must be foremost in our minds. Religious thought is the prerequisite to religious affection and obedient action.” -R.C. Sproul

In today’s podcast episode I will continue the book review series of Spiritual Disciplines For The Christian Life by Donald Whitney. As a result of overwhelming response to my 2014 reader survey, I want to focus on the challenges of personal spiritual growth. Literally, 100% of those that participated in my readers survey selected personal spiritual growth as a challenge in their life. With that, I’m diving into a very influential book that offers practical application.

Spiritual Disciplines For The Christian Life by Donald Whitney has been powerfully impactful on my personal spiritual growth. I’m convinced it will help you as well. I encourage you to get a copy, read it, and begin to discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness (1 Timothy 4:7).

Book Notes:

036 – The Unspoken Role Model

Dad, you are a role model - like it or not

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We hear comments regarding role models in news and media on a regular basis. Sports broadcasting is constantly attempting to convince our children the latest superstar running back is a great role model. The entertainment and music industries want us to believe that our children should look up to the current chart toppers.

I won’t attempt to argue these public figures should or should not be considered role models. I don’t know these folks personally. Besides the publicity that receive from media (both good and bad), I have no evidence to persuade me one way or the other.

However, I think it important to point out the reason that media must emphasize these public figures as role models. It’s like the Christian that must tell everyone they are a Christian. If you have to tell everyone you are a Christian, you may not be. You also see this in politics. Why do so many politicians feel to need to tell constituents they are conservative? If you have to tell everyone you are conservative, you may not be.

In today’s podcast, we’ll talk about the unspoken role model. There is a role model that doesn’t need to be announced. There is a role model that exists in the life of every individual. Some times this unspoken role model is a very positive influence. Other times this unspoken role model can lead down detrimental paths.

Who is this unspoken role model? Dad, of course.

Listen in on today’s podcast as we examine dad’s natural positioning as a role model in the life of our children. A recognition of our position as a role model can enable us to serve well in this position of influence.

Dispelling The Myth Of The Strong Silent Type

4 Reasons To Avoid Silence

Have you ever been called the strong, silent type? Maybe you’ve heard this reference used to describe men of few words. While there is wisdom and biblical support for being a man of few words, strong leadership can not be silent.

When there are many words, sin is unavoidable, but the one who controls his lips is wise. – Proverbs 10:19

The intelligent person restrains his words… -Proverbs 17:27

My dearly loved brothers, understand this: Everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger. -James 1:19

However, none of these verses suggest that we remain silent. Strong leaders within their home must be willing to speak. This statement does not give permission to be rude, mean, angry, or loud.

A gentle answer turns away anger, but a harsh word stirs up wrath. -Proverbs 15:1

Silence is often a symptom of a serious issue within the family. A big argument between husband and wife is often followed by days or even weeks of silence. Children can be provoked to anger (see Ephesians 6:4) when punishment of egregious offenses is followed by silence.

Silence among family members can be a serious sign of trouble. A strong leader must be willing to discuss the root cause of silence. If a big argument has created silence, a strong leader will open up the needed discussion to gain resolution. If a child’s egregious offense has created silence, a strong leader will take the time to calmly explain proper conduct and the consequences of bad conduct.

Therefore, the strong, silent type should never be used to describe a good spiritual leader.

Let me share 4 reasons that you can’t afford to remain silent as the spiritual leader of your family.

Please Take My 2014 Reader Survey

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Would you please take a few minutes to fill out the survey? By doing so, you will ultimately be helping yourself. Why? Because you will be helping me make my content even more interesting and relevant to you.

Your input is important to me. The survey is easy to fill out. The survey results are completely anonymous. I can’t tell who said what. And it will only take a few minutes of your time.

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Take two of the most godly, mature, absolutely wonderful, and nearly perfect individuals, put them under the same roof, and … watch out!  Sparks start flying, trash cans get bashed in, doors get slammed, tempers rise, and the cat learns to fly – reluctantly.  In addition, husbands go without dinner and sleep on the couch.  Yet, in the midst of real life, God calls men to do more than just “hang in there.”  He calls us to be the spiritual leaders of our homes.

Stephen Arterburn
Being God's Man... In Leading A Family (Colorado Springs: WaterBrook Press, 2003), 22

Adoption – The Gospel With Skin On It

I’ve been blessed by adoption in more ways than I’ll ever be able to express.  This must see video captures just the initial blessing of a life long adoption.  Adoption is, in fact, the Gospel with skin on it.  Enjoy and be blessed.

Do you have an adoption story or experience? Share your story in the comments below, I know it will encourage others.

4 Simple Steps To A Great Decision

I was recently faced with a very difficult decision, one of those major career change decisions. Several aspects made this decision a very big decision. I had been with my currently company for many years, and had built a tremendous team and developed wonderful relationships with some of what I consider to be the most effective leaders in the technology space. Yet, I could not ignore a new opportunity that clearly represented a promotion and growth in a direction that aligns with my personal aspirations. This decision would impact every aspect of my life. Thankfully, I was able to rely upon a set of steps that I long ago established for making decisions. These simple steps have helped me countless times in making good decisions. And, looking back now, I know they helped me make a good decision regarding my career choices.

4 Simple Steps To A Great Decision

Now don’t misinterpret the intention of this article. I’m not aware of anything that will make all decisions easy, but the following 4 steps will certainly assist you in making a good decision. In the end, I left my old company to take a more senior position in another company. While I felt confident that I was making a good decision, it was still very difficult. I was leaving a team of tremendous talent and dedication. I was leaving a company of stellar performance within their industry. Because of those factors and more, there wasn’t a single element of making the decision or the career move that was easy. Nonetheless, a great sense of confidence resonated with me as I knew I had followed my 4 simple steps to making a great decision.