Today we are talking about protecting your marriage. A couple of weeks ago, Mike Pence was criticized for protecting his marriage by refusing to dine alone with a women who is not his wife. Also known as the “Billy Graham Rule”, Graham kept this standard in order to protect his reputation and the reputation of his ministry. Both of these men understand that we are sinful people, living in a world that is watching us live out our faith.

Pence and Graham set a good example by setting high standards for themselves. As Bible-believing men, we need to be thoughtful about ways we can protect our marriages. Most of the men in our church meet in weekly accountability groups, which includes some questions and discussion on this topic. This is one way our men encourage each other to keep high standards and guard their marriages.

We also talk about some practical ways we protect our marriages in our our different work environments. Mark has always employed his children to do administrative work in the church, and he doesn’t counsel women alone. Shawn manages a team that includes women. When he meets with them (both the men and the women), they meet in a room with a window. Micah’s team often travels to offsite meetings, so they avoid driving alone with people of the opposite sex.

Our wives are a treasure. We want to honor them by guarding our marriages and maintaining trusting relationships with them.

 

Protecting Your Marriage: Why We Support Mike Pence | Episode 32 | CongreGate Podcast

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Links and Recommendations:

The Pence-Graham Standard – Cal Thomas

Praying for Your Wife – Scott Hahn

 

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We open the episode talking about Easter, Holy Week, and some of our church traditions. One of our favorite traditions is our Good Friday service. For the past few years, we have had seven men speak on the seven words of Jesus on the cross. Each man speaks for five minutes, sharing some insight on one of those statements. Each year this has been an encouraging service for our church body. You can listen to a service from last year on our church website.

Then we move on to our main topic for the week, practical tips for instilling masculinity in our boys and femininity in our girls. Current culture is attempting to blur the lines between what is masculine and feminine. In order to promote complementary Biblical roles of men and women, we need to be intentional about encouraging masculinity and femininity in our children.

One of the main ways we encourage masculinity in our boys is by modeling masculinity to them, while our wives model femininity to our daughters. Our roles and work in the home are different; masculine work is typically more physically demanding and feminine work tends to be more nurturing. That doesn’t mean women can’t work outside or that men can’t cook a meal. But God specifically designed men to do jobs that require strength and risk, while he designed women with specific capability to care for and nurture people.

What about men that may not be physically able to do hard manual labor? How can we instill masculinity in other ways? In our church, we provide time for the men and women to have separate times of fellowship. We include our teen children in these events and encourage them to fellowship with men and women outside of their age group. We also discuss how we can include our children in work around the house (even when it makes the work take longer…). As they get older, let your boys hang out and work with other Godly men and your girls spend time with other Godly women.

We’d love to hear more from you about this topic! How do you promote masculinity in your boys and femininity in your girls?

 

Practical Tips for Instilling Masculinity and Femininity in Your Children | Episode 31 | CongreGate Podcast

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Links and Recommendations:

Seven Words of Christ on the Cross – Antioch Community Church Good Friday service 2016 (you’ll have to scroll through and find sermons from March 2016)

 

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Today we are talking about comforting people in their suffering. How can we come alongside Christians that are suffering, with compassion and hope? People suffer and respond to suffering differently. We need to look for ways to encourage fellow believers with truth and kindness, without trying to fix their circumstances.

We share a few stories of friends and church members that we have walked beside through suffering. Currently, one family in our church that is going through a significant trial. Their faith-filled suffering has been such a great encouragement to the church body. Every time they speak, the church is blessed by their honest words of faith in the midst of uncertainty.

We also talk about some ways that we can meet practical needs. Sometimes we just need to “be there” with people, and sometimes we need to cry with those that are hurting. We can provide meals or childcare to those might be overwhelmed with life.

In closing, we remind you also to “set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (1 Pet. 1:13)

 

Comforting People in Their Suffering | Episode 30 | CongreGate Podcast

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Links and Recommendations:

Strong and Weak – by Andy Crouch

Being There: Dave & Gloria Furman on suffering

 

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What should we do when our family members have opposing views? One of our listeners suggested this topic, so today we talk about how we can be gracious & loving while confronting moral issues with these family members. Can we still have fellowship with family members that have different views than we do? We think you can.

Sometimes people confuse preferences and principles. We discuss some examples and talk about how we can have conversations about our preferences, while still being gracious.

The command to love takes precedence over being right about our issue. God commands us to love our enemies. While “enemy” may sound harsh, we often make enemies of people that oppose us, even people in our own family. 1 Corinthians 13 tells us that without love, we are a noisy gong or clanging cymbal.

Our first duty is to love and pray for these family members, in hopes that God, through the gospel, will change them.

 

When Family Members Have Opposing Moral Views | Episode 29 | CongreGate Podcast

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Links and Recommendations:

Jesus Storybook Bible

5 Principles for Engaging a Disapproving Family – Desiring God

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Today we are talking about how to share the gospel with your children and how to recognize salvation in your children. It’s important not to coerce our children into professing faith under pressure. How can we communicate the gospel to our children and offer salvation to them without creating false converts?

Many children raised in Christian homes may profess faith at young ages. Sometimes Sunday school teachers and youth group workers can put a lot of pressure on children to “make decisions for the Lord.” What fruit should we be looking for to confirm true faith in young children? How can we tell the difference between repentance and sorrow over getting caught in sin?

What can we do to encourage our children toward salvation? We should require obedience. We should be speaking the gospel to our children every day. We should be encouraging our children to read the Bible for themselves, as well as reading scripture to them regularly. We should be praying for their salvation, both with them and in our private prayer times.

We also discuss when we should allow our children to be baptized. We encourage you to wait for your children to come and ask you to be baptized. This can be another confirmation of a true conversion.

 

How to Recognize Salvation in Your Children | Episode 28 | CongreGate Podcast

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Links and Recommendations:

Shepherding a Child’s Heart – Tedd Tripp

 

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