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Whether the issue of the day on Twitter, Facebook, or cable news is our sexuality, political divides, or the perceived conflict between faith and science, today’s media pushes each one of us into a frustrating clash between two opposing sides. Polarizing, us-against-them discussions divide us and distract us from thinking clearly and communicating lovingly with others. Scott Sauls, like many of us, is weary of the bickering and is seeking a way of truth and beauty through the conflicts. Jesus Outside the Lines presents Jesus as this way. Scott shows us how the words and actions of Jesus reveal a response that does not perpetuate the destructive fray. Jesus offers us a way forward—away from harshness, caricatures, and stereotypes. In Jesus Outside the Lines, you will experience a fresh perspective of Jesus, who will not (and should not) fit into the sides.
Is real friendship too risky? We live in a world where real friendship is hard to find. Suspicious of others and insecure about ourselves, we retreat into the safety of our small, self-made worlds. Now more than ever, it’s easy to avoid people with whom we disagree or whose life experiences don’t mirror our own. Safe among like-minded peers and digital “friends,” we really don’t have to engage with those who can challenge and enhance our limited perspectives. Tragically, even the church can become a place that minimizes diversity and reinforces isolation. Jesus models a much richer vision of friendship. Scott Sauls, pastor and teacher, invites you to see the breadth of Christ’s love in this book, BeFriend. Join Scott on this journey through twenty-one meditations to inspire actively pursuing God’s love through expanding your circle of friends. Scott has met too many people whose first impulse is to fence off their lives with relational barriers that only end up starving their own souls. Yes, it’s true: Real friendship is costly. Love does make us vulnerable. But without risk, our lives will remain impoverished. Join Scott in BeFriend as he summons you toward diverse friendship that can enrich your life and, in the process, reveal a better version of yourself.
In this honest book, pastor and author Scott Sauls exposes the real struggles that Christian leaders and pastors regularly face. Sauls shares his own stories and those of other leaders from Scripture and throughout history to remind us that we are human, we are sinners, and we need Jesus to help us thrive as people and leaders. For Christian leaders—both inside and outside of the church—weaknesses that are left unchecked can lead to a downfall that is both public and painful. They want to lead with character and live like Jesus, but ambition, isolation, criticism, envy, anticlimax, opposition, restlessness, and insecurity can get in the way. From Weakness to Strength provides leaders with tools to draw near to Jesus and stay encouraged and hopeful, even (and especially) when sin and struggle get in the way.
Don’t waste your awkwardness. The most difficult subjects in our lives are also the ones that we find most uncomfortable to talk about: divorce, body image, sexuality, pornography, or depression. Our awkward silence reveals the gap that exists between what we are and what we know we should be. But God loves those awkward moments, Sammy Rhodes argues, because they are precisely where we find connection with God and one another. In This Is Awkward, Rhodes talks directly, honestly, hilariously about the most painfully uncomfortable subjects in our lives. In chapters like “Parents Are a Gift (You Can’t Return Them)” and “The Porn in My Side,” he boldly goes where most of us fear to tread, revealing that we can be liberated by the embrace of a God who knows the most shameful things about us and loves us all the same. Because nothing is too awkward for God.
One Step of Obedience Led to Thousands Irene and Domingo Garcia began their married lives at sixteen, already expecting a baby. Their first ten years together included Domingo’s alcoholism and abuse, and Irene’s desperate prayers for answers. Then a miracle happened: Domingo pleaded for forgiveness. As God healed their marriage, Irene and Domingo adopted a little girl. And a new season began for an imperfect couple who were willing to say yes to each other and to God. Over the past forty-five years, the Garcias have birthed, fostered, or adopted thirty-two children. Their story holds difficult endings as well as promising new beginnings. Above all, their story reminds us what can happen when ordinary people submit to God’s call. Rich in Love is about a family cemented in hope. About a need to love the orphan. And about a God who never, ever gives up.
*Is there a place for celibate, gay Christians in the church? *How do the gospel, holiness, and indwelling sin play out in the life of a Christian experiencing same-sex attraction? And how do brothers and sisters in Christ show love to them? Wesley Hill offers wise counsel that is biblically faithful, theologically serious, and oriented to the life and practice of the church.As a celibate gay Christian, Hill gives us a glimpse of what it looks like to wrestle firsthand with God's "No" to same-sex sexual intimacy. What does it mean for gay Christians to be faithful to God while struggling with the challenge of their homosexuality? What is God's will for believers who experience same-sex desires? Those who choose celibacy are often left to deal with loneliness and the hunger for relationships. How can gay Christians experience God's favor and blessing in the midst of a struggle that for many brings a crippling sense of shame and guilt? Weaving together reflections from his own life and the lives of other Christians, such as Henri Nouwen and Gerard Manley Hopkins, Hill offers a fresh perspective on these questions. He advocates neither unqualified "healing" for those who struggle nor accommodation to temptation, but rather faithfulness in the midst of brokenness.
Hasn’t Jesus called us into the thorns and thistles with Him to love what we find there? What if we had the courage to follow him into the briarpatch and discover life as we were always meant to live it? In The Briarpatch Gospel, dynamic young pastor Shayne Wheeler presents a radical message of grace, one that won’t allow you to remain comfortable merely sitting in a church pew. He shares his own heartbreaking personal journey through the briarpatch, and his church’s remarkable experience of creating a community in which people walk through life’s issues—even the darkest, most painful problems and questions—together. Unafraid. Like Jesus did. Think about it: What is your (or your church’s) briarpatch—the area where you’re afraid to go, or feel unequipped to address? Is it sharing what you really think on controversial issues? Becoming friends with someone who’s different from you? Confronting and overcoming your own pain, doubts, or fears? Bold and challenging, The Briarpatch Gospel provides a new vernacular for Christians to have open, honest conversations about what loving each other in Christ’s name might look like in the briarpatches of their own communities.

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