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I often share links for my own future reference, but figure an article might interest one of my blog readers too.

** Certain types of Christianity are all about having “the best life now.” Or we can be challenged to do “great things” for God in this world. I see more problems with the former, than the later. But what if all this striving to do big things leads to the neglect of the little things in life? Focused on grand things, we miss the small needs right around us. I recently had a blog post entitled: “Keep plugging away. God is at work in the small.” You can find it, if you want. But I wanted to direct you to another article: What if all I want is a mediocre life?

** I recently shared this statement on twitter: “I don’t want to be like the Proverbs 31 woman. Rather, I pray to keep growing in the likeness of Jesus.” – Of course, I was using hyperbole to make a point. I don’t literally think there are no valuable principles in Proverbs 31, but we can become focused on the wrong thing. A few days later, I stumbled upon this post: Live Like Jesus: How Biblical Womanhood Insults the Imago Dei. Focusing on women in the Bible and so-called “biblical womanhood” can become idolatrous, distracting us from Jesus.

** I also recently shared this on social media: “It is my opinion that many people on social media need to review literary devices…hyperbole, satire, tone…and just plain old wit.” Literary devices can be very effective in creating thoughtful reflection, and in making a point. But I increasingly find that people have little ability to recognize these things, and take everything literally. Techniques that are supposed to create thinking, do the opposite! Sigh. This site reviews literacy devices.

** The 10 Awful Truths about Book Publishing. Whether you are an author or a reader, you should read this article. But particularly if you are a reader! The stats will likely surprise – even shock – you. The market is literally flooded with books, and many books get lost in the deluge. This is one reason that new and self-published authors REALLY NEED YOU…to write reviews on places like amazon, and share about the book on social media. Quality books may sadly remain in obscurity.

** I enter many Christian book giveaways, and win surprisingly often. For the Christian academic crowd, you can win a stack of books by OT scholar Walter Brueggemann. Enter here. The blogger at Samaritan’s Song is giving away a paperback copy of a book on Jonathon in the Old Testament. Enter here. Check out her thoughtful posts while you are at it.

Some worthwhile quotes on twitter recently:

“We live in a culture that promotes a ‘Follow your heart’ or ‘Me first’ mentality when really we should be putting Jesus first.”  @LzbthLouise

“Ultimately, there is but one idol: self. Any others we craft, exist only to serve it.” @STimmis

“In religion, you obey because God is useful. In Christianity, you obey because God is beautiful.”