Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview


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THIS & THAT: A Weekly Roundup of Favorite Articles and Quotes

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  • Favorite Quotes of the Week

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FAITH AND WORK: Connecting Sunday to Monday

Faith and Work News ~ Links to Interesting Articles

  • Graduating into a Pandemic Work Environment. Russ Gehrlein writes “I was recently asked what I would say to new college graduates who are entering a radically changed work environment, one that has been altered due to the COVID-19 pandemic that we have experienced for the past 15 months. Here is my encouraging message to them that is grounded in biblical truth and orthodox theology, and that will hopefully offer some practical suggestions.”
  • Three Biblical Life Lessons for Launching Your Graduate. Gary Hansen shares three important things graduates should keep in mind during this season of celebration.
  • Five Things That I Wish Someone Had Told Me After Graduation. Hugh Whelchel writes “After a lifetime of work, here are five biblical truths that I wish someone had told me when I graduated.”
  • How to Crush Your Interview and Land Your Dream Job with Austin Belcak. On this episode of the Crush Your Career podcast, Dee Ann Turner is joined by Austin Belcak, the founder of Cultivated Culture. He and Dee Ann talk about the role of networking in landing your dream job, how to prepare for an interview, tips and tricks to differentiate yourself in today’s world of virtual interviews, and how to use social media to set yourself apart from the other interviewees.

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  • More links to interesting articles
  • The Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week
  • My Review of Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book about a (Really) Big Problem by Kevin DeYoung
  • Snippets from the book Work and Worship: Reconnecting Our Labor and Liturgy by Matthew Kaemingk and Cory B. Willson

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If You Bring Me a Problem, Bring a Possible Solution

The job of a leader is a busy one, and we continually strive to be working on the most important work we have “on our plate”. One way I tried to assure that I was working on the most important work was to develop a daily “Priorities” list (think “Things to Do” list). At the end of the workday, I would review what I had gotten done that day, what new issues had arisen, and then rank my priorities for the following day. I would keep that list on my desk so that I was focused on it throughout the day. At the end of each workday, one way I would evaluate my effectiveness that day was to see how many of those top priorities I had gotten completed.
In a perfect world, all leaders would need to do is focus on their priorities. But we know that never happens. Throughout each day, issues will arise from your team members, business partners/customers, and your leaders. Thus, a leader has to effectively manage these “interruptions” that will occur throughout the day, so that they can assure that they are working on the most important work.
In this article, I’ll focus on those situations where a team member will stop by your office and ask if you have a minute for a discussion. When this occurs, leaders have the option to address the issue at the time, or, depending on the issue and what the leader is currently working on, ask their team member if they would set up a short meeting, hopefully later that day, to discuss. How a leader handles those interruptions will tell you a lot about how effective they are. Continue reading


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New and Upcoming Music

I enjoy music in a number of genres. There are several new and upcoming releases of interest. Here they are:

Milk & Honey – Crowder

Milk & Honey is Crowder’s fourth studio album, and his follow-up to 2018’s I Know a Ghost. Crowder has written that the title Milk & Honey is about promise. The album is a celebration of the future we are marching towards together and a prayer that each of us can live in this promise in the here and now. It features a variety of musical genres, though less of the swamp rock and bluegrass that his previous albums have included. Several of the songs are about Jesus and will soon find themselves into worship services. This is one of my top albums of 2020 thus far.  Continue reading


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14 Upcoming Books You Might Be Interested In


I love to read books in a variety of genres. There are a number of books scheduled to be published in the next few months that you might be interested in. Here are 14 of them, along with the book description from Amazon:

Lessons from the Upper Room: The Heart of the Savior by Sinclair Ferguson. To be published June 24.
From Amazon:
What would you give to spend an evening with Jesus, hearing Him teach and listening to Him pray? This is what we encounter in the Farewell Discourse of John 13–17. As the shadow of the cross loomed, Christ shared His final hours with the disciples to prepare them for His death, quiet their troubled hearts, and intercede on their behalf before the Father.
In Lessons from the Upper Room, Dr. Sinclair Ferguson draws us into these intimate hours from the night when Jesus was betrayed. This vivid picture of Christ’s ministry, from His washing the disciples’ feet to His High Priestly Prayer, shows us the heart of Jesus. Discover His deepest desires for His people and take delight in the suffering Savior who has overcome the world.” Continue reading


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2021 Mid-Year Favorites


As I have for several years, I’m sharing some of my favorites in a variety of categories for the first half of 2021. As with 2020, this list will look a little different from previous years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as we have not been to any concerts or conferences, and we have seen very few films thus far this year.
Except for books, these are all items that were released in 2021. For books, I include my favorite books that I’ve read this year, regardless of when the book was originally published.
Enjoy, and please let me know what you think of my list, as well as what would be on your list. Continue reading


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THIS & THAT: A Weekly Roundup of Favorite Articles and Quotes

  • 3 Reality Checks for Your Marriage. Paul Tripp shares essential wisdom perspectives that Scripture gives us that enable us to have realistic expectations for our marriage.

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  • Favorite Quotes of the Week

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FAITH AND WORK: Connecting Sunday to Monday

Faith and Work News ~ Links to Interesting Articles

  • 10 Signs Pastors Do Not Respect or Properly Value Their Elders. I’m hoping that these signs from Brian Dodd are not typical of your church leadership team.
  • What Are You Afraid Of? Howard Graham writes “Fearlessness starts with hope in something far greater than ourselves. It starts with an awestruck respect for God.”
  • Where Should I Move After Graduation? Meryl Herr responds to the question “I am finishing up my degree and am looking for job and internship opportunities in different cities. What should I consider when choosing a place to live? Best job opportunity? Closest to family? A place with solid churches? Good friends?”

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  • More links to interesting articles
  • The Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week
  • My Review of Faithful Leaders: and the Things That Matter Most by Rico Tice
  • Snippets from the book Work and Worship: Reconnecting Our Labor and Liturgy by Matthew Kaemingk and Cory B. Willson

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What are You Doing to Improve?


Awhile back I went to our weekly Friday morning Book Club. This is something some friends and I started a few years ago at work, and have continued now that we are retired. At the time we were reading John Maxwell’s excellent book Leadershift: The 11 Essential Changes Every Leader Must Embrace.
During one point in our discussion we were talking about moving out of our comfort zones, and we started talking about what is required to improve a particular skill. For example, one person is currently taking both piano and golf lessons to improve their mastery of those skills. Another person is a painter, and talked about getting feedback from his wife on his paintings. At times, when the feedback on a painting has not been positive, he has completely painted over what he has created, and started from scratch, working to improve. I can relate with my writing. I’ll write an article or movie review and then send to my wife (and editor) for review. In both instances, it’s humbling to ask for feedback but it usually results in raising the bar. I have a friend who is writing a book, not only does she ask to meet with me and my wife regarding her progress, but she also puts herself on a timeline in order to accomplish her goals.  Anytime we look to improve a skill or task, we will need to possess and demonstrate personal discipline. Continue reading


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What Are Your Lines?

In Alistair Begg’s new book Brave by Faith: God-Sized Confidence in a Post-Christian World, he takes us through the first seven chapters of the book of Daniel and compares what Daniel was facing to the situation Christians face in America today. In our increasingly secular culture, Christians are in the minority, like Daniel living as an exile in a foreign land.
Albert Mohler in his book The Gathering Storm: Secularism, Culture and the Church writes that historic Christianity is now increasingly either rejected or relegated to having no significance in the culture. Studies show a continual decline in church attendance, especially among younger people. Regular listeners of Mohler’s program The Briefing often hear about churches, entire denominations, Christian colleges and institutions caving to the pressures of the secular culture.
In Brave by Faith, Begg tells us that we are starting to feel that the notion of a persecuted church is coming ever closer. He writes:
“Secularism pushes back again and again against what the Bible says about sexual ethics, about salvation, about education, about the role and reach of the state, or about matters of public welfare. Public opinion has turned against Christians.”
He tells us that suddenly as a minority group within an increasingly secularized nation, we are finding out how it feels to be outsiders. And we don’t like it.
He helpfully asks: Continue reading