Kids and TV

Kid watching TVToday we’re sharing three links to help parents with deciding what, when, and how to shape TV time.

The first comes from the Washington Post and can be used for any technology that requires a screen: “Screen-time tips for parents.”

The Banner, a Christian magazine, offers five links to websites that will help parents review content for video games, movies, music, books and smart phone/tablet apps.

Especially in Christian circles, I hear plenty of pontificating on the evils of American entertainment, but as a parent, what I need most is realistic advice for the world I live in. Most of us are not going to burn our TVs. Most of us need a positive and practical model for how to raise “media wise” kids. That model should address not just the content of what we show our kids, but also the form it comes in and how it’s made. That’s why media literacy matters.

-Andrea Palpant Dilley

Read Andrea’s guide to media literacy for parents on Christianity Today‘s website.

Photo by Gustavo Gomez. Used with permission. Sourced by Flickr.

Comforting Others

When Jesus goes to the Garden to pray with a few of his disciples, he tells them that he is in deep distress, to the point of death. Then, Jesus asks his disciples to comfort him by staying with him for a while. (Matthew 26.31ff.) Well, we know how that turned out…

If someone told you that they were distressed to the point of death, how would you feel? Many of us wouldn’t know what to say, and we’d feel very inadequate to help. So how can we comfort others?


Here’s some guidance on “Talking to Someone with a Chronic Illness.”

Simply being there in someone else’s darkness is an act of peace. Read more.

And what might there be to learn from the women at the cross?


This post is meant to encourage all ages to comfort one another in times of suffering, pain, and darkness.

Photo by Kate Mereand-Sinha. Used with permission. Sourced by Flickr.

Sunday Follow-Up: When you are busybusybusy

On Sunday, February 9, Pastor Chelsey continued our series from Mark, “Who do you say I am?” with a message from Mark 6.45-52 (Jesus walks on water). You can hear that sermon on our current series website (or in the archives). One of the strong images in that passage is the disciples straining at the oars, trying very hard on their own to make it to the other side of the sea against an adverse wind. While they are straining, Jesus is aware of their struggles, as he spends the evening praying on a mountaintop.

Today, busyness and being in a hurry can be our way of ‘straining at the oars.’

In such a hurry

Here’s a review of a book called Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book About a (Really) Big ProblemĀ  by Kevin DeYoung. You may find it worth your time!

Courtney offers a guide for busy moms to stay in the Word.

And Tim shares his reflections on why “Life is too short to be in a hurry.”

Photo by Sabrina M. Used with permission. Sourced by Flickr.

Sunday Follow-up: Restorative Justice

On Sunday, February 2, 2014, Peter Sinclair continued our series, “Who Do You Say I Am?” from the Gospel of Mark with a message from Mark 4.41-5.20. You can listen to it on our current series page (or in the archives).

In his sermon, Peter touched on the topic of justice and our tendency to go the retributive route rather than God’s restorative way. Recognizing that this is a big topic, we thought we’d share some reading material on the blog.

First, “No Money in the Revenge Business” considers the connection of forgiveness and what we seek when we’ve been wronged.

Kurt talks about the counter-cultural way of Jesus and “Why the ‘Christian life’ isn’t worth living.

Finally, our denomination, the Christian Reformed Church of North America, shares a number of resources relating to restorative justice through its Office of Social Justice.


This post is a follow-up to a sermon preached by Peter Sinclair at Christ Community Church in Nanaimo, BC on February 2, 2014.