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Advice for the Christian Life

I was inspired by an article that Tim Challies wrote a few days ago giving 40 pieces of advice for the Christian life. I thought it might be a helpful exercise to try and distill down some of my own things I’ve learned and share them with you.

1. You are not Jesus. You can’t save people or change people. You can help, and guide, but only God can change.
2. There is no end to the reasons that you have to give thanks. So give thanks always.
3. Worship and prayer are your strongest sources of power in the Christian life. Plug in and recharge often.
4. You can get through anything if you have good friends.
5. You will only have good friends if you proactively pursue and cultivate friendships.
6. If someone is upset, or mourning, or despairing. Always call or go visit.
7. Don’t be hasty to draw conclusions. Things are only simple when they have been rashly judged.
8. Read people who disagree with you on issues you care about. This will help you to think and reason more critically.
9. Love is our super power. Love as hard as you can.
10. Hope is what you have to offer the world. So preach it.
11. Jesus was the greatest shepherd who ever lived and he was still a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. Don’t be surprised when you are called to share in his suffering.
12. There is nothing more fickle or superfluous than the praise of man. Live for the pleasure of One.
13. People don’t remember what you said in the argument. They remember how the argument made them feel. If you stay calm and cheerful you can deescalate almost anything and even win someone over to friendship.
14. Try to regularly interact with people who are strong where you are weak. This will help you become more self aware and might even help you grow.
15. Don’t romanticize the past OR set your hope on something future. God has given you today, so rejoice and be glad in it.
16. Make it a habit to offer genuine affirmation as often as you can. People are often very good at noticing what is wrong with themselves, and very bad at noticing what is good. Affirmation can promote truth and understanding among your neighbors.
17. Don’t underestimate the restorative power of natural beauty. For in creation, God’s divine nature and eternal power can be plainly seen.
18. Think early and often about how much you have been forgiven.
19. If you genuinely desire to know people, listen carefully to what they say and how they say it. Out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.
20. Your relationship with your spouse is your most important human relationship. In it lies the foundation—or lack of thereof—for your entire domestic world. You should treat it that way.
21. Things aren’t usually as big of a deal as they seem in the moment. You serve a big God whose been really faithful for a long time.
22. Most of the time, the best thing to do is to stop for a moment and pray.
23. It’s good for your soul to wonder. Seek out wondrous things.
24. Humility is a key that opens many doors.
25. The greatest thing you can have is more of God.

I hope this encourages you to pursue a full, wise, and joyful life in the Lord Jesus!

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