Archive for the ‘Interviews’ Category
Posted on March 4th, 2014 by David Burnette
We don’t usually think about busyness as a spiritual issue, but as pastor and author Kevin DeYoung reminds us in his latest book, Crazy Busy, we need to stop and consider what is for many believers today a massive problem.
Kevin is a pastor at University Reformed Church in East Lansing, Michigan. He has authored several books and his blog over at TGC - “DeYoung, Restless, and Reformed” – is worth visiting regularly.
The fact that busyness affects how we follow Jesus on an everyday basis makes it extremely relevant to our upcoming Secret Church 14, “The Cross and Everyday Life.” That’s another reason we’re glad Pastor Kevin was willing to answer the following questions on this important topic.
1. How can someone determine whether their level of busyness is normal or an indication of a deeper problem?
Busyness itself is not the problem. God made Adam to labor in the Garden and He made it good. We have been created for good works, which means we have work to do. Any Christian who cares about people will seek to bear the burdens of others. Clearly, inactivity is not the goal of godliness.
Having said all that, obviously some busyness is problematic. We all know and feel that—some of us every day. To determine what is healthy busyness and what is not, I’d start by looking for sin’s symptoms. Am I losing my patience more than I used to? Do I find myself easily angered? Have I lost the joy of my salvation? Then I would take a look at the patterns in my life. Am I taking a regular Sabbath? Do I have habits of feasting and fasting, work and rest, leisure and labor? Do I seem to be working all the time and actually getting less done? Finally, I try to ask myself this simple diagnostic question: am I trying to do good to others or look good before others? If we’re honest, so much of our busyness is about people-pleasing, pride, and positioning ourselves for earthly applause.
2. How is our busyness, or at least our feeling of busyness, a gospel issue?
It could be a gospel issue in a number of ways. If busyness chokes out the seed of God’s word (like in the parable of the sower and the soils), that’s a gospel issue. If busyness is a convenient way to cover up the rot in my own soul—or make me forget that I even have a soul—that’s a gospel issue. If I am trying to do everything for God to such an extent that I don’t find any joy in God, that’s a gospel issue. And perhaps most seriously, busyness is a gospel issue when I keep running at breakneck speed just to prove myself to my parents, prove myself to the world, or prove myself to God. If we can’t come to Christ, take his light and easy yoke upon us and rest in him, then we haven’t understood the gospel at all.
3. In your book Crazy Busy you mention one thing busy people (and all people) must do. Can you summarize that one thing?
The one thing we must do is sit at the feet of Jesus. I know that sounds super-spiritual, or worse, like one more thing to do. But it’s the point of Jesus’ interaction with Mary and Martha in Luke 10. Martha is trying to be a great host, but all her preparations matter for nothing if she neglects the Host in our midst. Jesus gently rebukes Martha for being frazzled and bothered by lesser things, when Mary has chosen the better part, namely, to listen to Jesus and learn from him. It’s not a silver bullet, but I really believe if we could make it a priority to take an hour each day, or 20 minutes, or a regular five minutes to slowly read the Bible and pray, we would begin to see Spirit-prompted changes. It’s no accident that Luke was inspired to put the Mary-Martha story at the end of chapter 10, after the sending out of the 72 disciples for powerful ministry and after the parable of the Good Samaritan. It’s the Lord’s way of telling us: look, you can cast out demons, you can preach, you can heal, you can stop by the side of the road to help the sick and dying, but if you don’t spend time with me, you are neglecting the very thing I want most from you: to sit at my feet.
Posted on February 17th, 2014 by David Burnette
Connecting the cross to everyday life can be a challenge for every believer, regardless of their occupation. But for busy moms this can be especially difficult, which is why we’re so grateful that Gloria Furman agreed to answer a few questions about this important topic. This is one of the topics we’ll be covering in our upcoming Secret Church, “The Cross and Everyday Life.”
Gloria is a wife, a mother of four young children, a doula, a blogger, and an author. She and her husband Dave serve at Redeemer Church in Dubai. Watch for Gloria’s forthcoming book Treasuring Christ When Your Hands are Full: Gospel Meditations for Busy Moms (expected March 31, 2014 from Crossway). Crossway has provided a free study guide for the book here.
1. Gloria, why is it so difficult for busy moms in particular to see how the gospel relates to their everyday life?
A few years ago I read this odd-sounding prayer that is attributed to Jonathan Edwards: “Lord, stamp eternity on my eyeballs.” Once I thought about it, I realized that it wasn’t so odd after all. I think the assumption behind this prayer is precisely what makes it hard for this busy mom to see how the gospel relates to everyday life.
I watch my preschoolers throwing elbows to push the buttons in the elevator and I find it hard to imagine them as adults. I grow frustrated while serving them and the furthest thing from my mind is that we have eternal souls and are unspeakably loved by our Creator. In short, I forget eternity and struggle to see how the gospel relates to these mundane mothering moments.
Many of us are used to thinking that the gospel is good news for non-Christians, but has little to do with believers who are years past our born-again birthday. We may think that the cross is good for annual reflection on Good Friday, but we need something “deeper” to get us through an ordinary, sock-folding Friday morning. But living in light of the gospel lifts our gaze to the horizon of eternity and it affects how we view everyday motherhood. We see that the cross is actually central to our motherhood. What distinctively Christian hope do we have as moms without the atoning sacrifice of Jesus and his triumphant resurrection? A gravely sobering: none.
We understand that we are about the work of helping to prepare our children for life in God’s new creation. But it’s difficult for busy moms to see how the gospel relates to everyday life because we’re often preoccupied by what’s right in front of us (or climbing on us). The gospel fuels our hope! And our work as moms can serve to fix the eyes of our hearts on our glorious God and on things unseen (2 Cor. 4:18) so we can see our work for what it really is—worship.
2. Can you give moms out there a practical example of how treasuring Christ and the gospel affects one of your everyday tasks?
The South Africans in our community have this saying: “Sharing is caring.” Like little parrots, my children repeat this phrase. Do you want a sip of mom’s peanut butter banana smoothie? Reach up with your little hands and squeal, “Sharing is caring, Mom!” Sharing is part and parcel to motherhood. In a thousand tiny ways we are called to share, to give, and to sacrifice. The sacrificial stretching of a mother can reach far—from your wallet to your weekend, your worries, and even your waistline.
But we live in an age that celebrates autonomy; we are lovers of self. When I feel like my child is intentionally testing my patience, my first thought is generally not that I’m eager to die to myself. I don’t care to share anything except a sharp rebuke or an ignoring, cold shoulder. But treasuring Christ flips my autonomy affair on its head and makes the inclination of my heart to celebrate dependence on God’s grace. In the everyday task of training my children the gospel reminds me that my Savior cared to share his own life with me by dying on the cross while I was yet his enemy (Rom. 5:8). He wore a crown of thorns and went down into the grave so he could redeem my life from the pit and crown me with his steadfast love and mercy. Christ gives me his love and mercy to share with my children.
It’s through Christ’s strength that I can give of myself in death-defying and death-embracing motherhood. Jesus empowers me to choose to nurture life instead of scorn it. He leads me to lay down my wants, needs, and rights for the sake of loving my kids. His love emboldens me to put to death the deeds of my flesh for the sake of loving my kids. And even when I fail to love as Christ loves (and we all fail), his Spirit encourages me to boldly approach God’s throne of grace because Christ himself is my righteousness. I love how 1 Peter 4:11 describes who gets the glory when I serve my children with the strength God supplies: “… in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.”
Through these ordinary moments of motherhood Jesus invites us to himself to share in his love: “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love” (John 15:9).
3. As you’ve noted before, many moms struggle to see the significance of their work. How would you encourage them to see their work as a part of the bigger picture of what God is doing in the world?
I will be the first to confess that my “big picture” vision is often getting dinner on the table and packing school lunches before I go to bed. It’s so easy to lose sight of the bigger picture of what God is doing in the world. That’s why we need to take the long-view of motherhood, which stretches way past potty training, high school graduation, and even the course of our own lives. The long-view of motherhood has at its center the cross of Jesus Christ. We see motherhood through the lens of Christ’s substitutionary death. Jesus’ death has made a way for you and your children to be fellow heirs with Christ (Rom. 8:17, Heb. 2:11). Imagine… your son—a little brother in the Lord! Your daughter—a little sister in the Lord!
Mary’s newborn had tiny little feet and delicate toes—serpent-crushing feet (Gen. 3:15). God sent a man—the God-man—to do the work of subduing his enemy and pursuing his lost children to the furthest reaches of the earth scattered across every generation of human history. When it’s Tuesday morning and we see the effects of the Fall “as sin reigned in death,” we look to the cross and remember that because of Jesus’ death, “grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 5:21). By God’s grace we are nurturing life in the face of death to the praise of his glory. That includes smearing butter on toast, cleaning smeared handprints from the walls, correcting homework and attitudes, and everything else busy moms do.
We must take the long-view of motherhood, where the serpent-crushing, incarnate Son of God is risen and reigning. The Father “put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church” (Eph. 1:22). Moms are part of Christ’s multiethnic Bride who walks the earth in her beautiful feet bringing good news to all peoples everywhere (Rom. 10:15). With the cross as our center, we can mother our children with an eye on the horizon of eternity.
Christian mother, be encouraged that you have your hands full… with every spiritual blessing in Christ (Eph. 1:3). And your work in nurturing your children is your privileged participation in God’s work as he unites all things in Jesus (Eph. 1:10).
Posted on December 3rd, 2013 by David Burnette
The latest roundtable discussion at TGC features John Piper, Matt Chandler, and David Platt talking about how God’s sovereignty and his “bigness” sustain us through suffering.
Posted on November 13th, 2013 by Jonathan
From the Multiply blog: E-laine lives in the Philippines and has requested we pray for them in the tragic wake of Typhoon Haiyan. She specifically asked that we pray for Gracetoration Christian Fellowship in Coron, Palawan, Philippines, a church that has used Multiply as a tool in their disciple-making. Recently, we were able to ask her some questions to better guide our prayers.
How are you connected with Gracetoration Christian Fellowship in the Philippines?
The Pastor of this church, Pastor Paul Dignadice is a dear friend of our family. He used to pastor our church in Metro Manila, but the Lord touched his heart to go back to his homeland, which is Coron, Palawan. He organized a group called “Jesus’ Young Followers” – discipling young men and women who will give glory to God and will make disciples who will make disciples who will make disciples who will make disciples. I have volunteered as a Youth Leader under Pastor Paul’s leadership for 5 years but I am based here in Metro Manila.
Jesus’ Young Followers Facebook page is: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jesus-Young-Followers/192509407536603. We post updates on this page too.
How can the church here assist you? Include some specific prayer requests.
a. Pastor Paul’s house and other workers’ houses has been hit really bad by the storm – pray for provisions as they rebuild; pray for comfort, Strength (spiritual, emotional, physical), wisdom, and more love for the Lord as they continue to become living testimonies of Jesus’ love.
b. The church lost its roofing, walls, windows… pray for them as the church rebuilds.
c. The members of this church are taking care of others before themselves-their needs-their houses. Pray that the Lord will continue to comfort them, give them strength as they go around trying to help others.
d. They need provisions to do these things. please pray for provisions as they try to help others with food, clothing, shelter and provisions for their own needs.
e. Names of Pastors/workers there: they need prayers as they lead the congregation in sharing Jesus to those who lost their homes, businesses, and other possessions.
i. Pastor Paul Dignadice and family: (Pastor Paul’s facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/paul.dignadice?fref=ts)
ii. Pastor Boy Garcia and family: https://www.facebook.com/bhoy.kitgarcia?fref=ts
iii. Pastor Romy Cruz and family: https://www.facebook.com/raski13?fref=ts
You mentioned taking this opportunity to share Jesus’ love with others. How is Gracetoration Christian Fellowship doing this?
a. They opened the doors of their church to those who totally lost their homes. The church is being used as a “half-way” house right now.
b. They are going around and distributing food to those who do not have any.
I know they have more stories to tell… but im just asking for prayers for them as they face this difficult time.
c. Electricity has not been restored for the town– pray that they will get it back soon.
- – - – -
As you pray for E-laine, Pastor Paul, and his team, also pray about potentially giving financially to the relief effort and the enormous material need it’s attempting to meet. We recommend giving to Compassion International, Samaritan’s Purse, and Baptist Global Response… all ministries that specialize in disaster relief and long-term development, and all ministries that are currently on the ground in the Philippines.
Posted on November 12th, 2013 by David Burnette
The following interview appeared over at The Gospel Coalition: Mark Mellinger talks with Pastor David about missions and making disciples following Pastor David’s message titled “Why the Great Commission is Great: Reaching More and More People” at the TGC 13 Missions Conference.
You can listen to the full message here.
Posted on September 26th, 2013 by Eric Parker
Posted on September 23rd, 2013 by David Burnette
From TGC: John Piper sits down with Matt Chandler and David Platt to talk about social justice, younger evangelicals, and the gospel.
Posted on August 16th, 2013 by Eric Parker
We recently had the privilege of sitting down with Dr. Graham Cole to talk about several important biblical doctrines as well as some contemporary issues facing the church. Dr. Cole is the Anglican Professor of Divinity at Beeson Divinity School and the author of the following books:
We asked Dr. Cole about the areas he was written on – the Holy Spirit and the atonement, as well as the consequences of getting these doctrines right (or wrong) in our life, witness, and proclamation. We also asked him about some current cultural issues, such as homosexuality, that Christians must be prepared to think through.
Posted on August 6th, 2013 by David Burnette
Pastor David Platt talks about the upcoming Follow Me simulcast on August 14th and the topics that will be covered. The simulcast is free, and you can register here.
Posted on July 30th, 2013 by David Burnette
Over the last couple months, we’ve posted a series of videos from a conversation with Pastor David about Radical (his first book), Follow Me (his latest book), and a number of issues in between. This entire conversation is leading up to the free Follow Me simulcast on August 14.
All 11 videos in this conversation are numbered below, and they correspond to the following questions:
- Three years after Radical, what has been encouraging and what has been concerning about responses to the book?
- What is the role of the church in following Christ?
- How does living radically fit with the normal Christian life?
- What does living radically look like for David Platt?
- What’s the difference between God’s commands and His individual callings?
- How is radical devotion to Christ different from religious legalism?
- How does caring for the poor fit with the church’s primary task of making disciples?
- Should we lead people in a ‘sinner’s prayer’?
- What led you to write Follow Me and why do you see it as more foundational than Radical?
- What are some cultural misunderstandings about follow Christ addressed in Follow Me?
- What should we expect from the Follow Me simulcast?
You are currently browsing the archives for the Interviews category.
- Platt Excerpts (98)
- Voices from the Past (90)
- Reaching the Unreached (83)
- Videos (80)
- Well Said (78)
- Biblical Insights (60)
- Featured Resource (59)
- Interviews (44)
- Pray for the Persecuted (44)
- Secret Church (43)
- Featured (38)
- Christmas/Advent (28)
- Current Events (25)
- Morning Meditation (23)
- Multiply (20)
- Conferences (17)
- Follow Me (17)
- Uncategorized (12)
- Cross (11)
- World Events (9)
- March 2014
- February 2014
- January 2014
- December 2013
- November 2013
- October 2013
- September 2013
- August 2013
- July 2013
- June 2013
- May 2013
- April 2013
- March 2013
- February 2013
- January 2013
- December 2012
- November 2012
- October 2012
- September 2012
- August 2012
- July 2012
- June 2012
- May 2012
- April 2012
- March 2012