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Let me end by passing along a bit of advice for gospel-centered living. It’s not original to me. And it’s pretty simple, even if it’s not followed often enough. If the engine of the Christian experience is the good news that God has given you new life in Christ, then you need to preach this good news to yourself every day. Remind yourself about what God has done for you in Christ as often as you can. So, for example, when

We must not believe the Devil’s big lie that says Christianity, with its virtue formation, is full of discouragement, too hard or impossible, and not for the “ordinary” Christian. One of our biggest problems as Christians is our failure to believe the true gospel and our tendency to believe a smaller, domesticated counterfeit.

If you think the Christian experience is supposed to be characterized by constant discouragement and infrequent victory over sin, your gospel is too small. It’s got a giant hole in it. Right in the middle. It’s a gospel that probably talks a long time about getting into heaven and out of hell or about something you share—or should share—with unbelievers. So, when someone comes along

Why should we pray? A simple question. At times, I find myself mindlessly going to pray out of obligation because that is what I should do first thing in the morning. Other times, I can find myself praying because I want something. While there are numerous reasons why we ought to pray, we need to consider the purpose of prayer and motivating factors to pray. The purpose and motivating factors should be connected to the goal of prayer.

The shield is the fourth piece of armor that Paul instructs every believer to use in our battle against the enemy. There were two types of shields used by a Roman soldier. One type of shield was small and strapped to the arm to be used as protection in hand-to-hand combat. The shield Paul referred to in this analogy was tall and broad and was used to protect the entire body from the air assault of arrows and spears. The soldiers who carried these shields would line