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Posts by Jacob Atchley

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Practice and Unstable Feelings

Simply, we can't arrive at knowing by doing. Biblical counselor, Carrie Mansfield states, "Feelings are unstable, change direction, and were never intended to lead us to truth or to fuel our actions." Truth ALONE is able to create faith, affections and joyful actions....

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Math According to Psalm 100

Mathematics teaches us the order of operation is critical to finding the right solution. The writer in Psalm 100 makes clear where we must start when it comes to truth, feelings, and behavior. Take a look at how the math works and see where your answers land....

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Deadly Expectations

Have you ever been in a relationship, a circumstance, a job, a situation where you had unrealistic expectations foisted upon you? A spouse that expects to much of you? Parents who demand grades, scores, and obedience at all costs? An employer whose demands are untethered from reality?...

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Made to Sing for Glory

Do you believe you were made for Global purposes? Do you believe God made you with a mind toward all nations knowing him through you? God made you for his glory, your joy, and for the nations. ...

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Faithful Fabric

Honor, Respect, and Glory. What do you think of when you hear those words?...

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A Statement from our Elders to the Church at Martinsburg and our Community

We likely have all heard the phrase "out of sight...out of mind." For many of us our exposure to the news cycle provides us with information that takes place to other people, other communities, and deals with other concerns. If we're not careful we read, listen, and observe with a distant eye, out of touch, and this leads us to live with an "out of sight....out of mind" me...

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Nomadic Sheep and a Faithful Shepherd

The twenty-third psalm portrays life as a pilgrimage, and in the final verse (6) the psalmist rightly comes to life’s goal, which is God’s house. Life can feel nomadic can't it? Sure we have a place we call home, but we all long for something more. Not necessarily bigger, but something more stable. No need of another addition, updating fixtures, remodeling kitchens, re...

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A Shepherd’s Look at Psalm 23

Phillip Keller was a shepherd for many years before becoming a pastor. The years as a shepherd provided him with unique insights into Psalm 23. He writes in A Shepherd's Look at Psalm 23 describes what can hinder sheep from getting rest....

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A Less Familiar Psalm 23

Do you remember the first time you walked into you a new environment (home, work, community, organization)? Do you remember the last time? Strange isn't it? Time, memories, experiences shape how we see things we so deeply love or loved. How about your marriage? The birth of your child? Hopes, dreams, desires now smashing into reality. Familiarity can be both friend and foe...

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Habits of Grace

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Our culture is drawn to the instant. The flashy. The monumental. But as biblical counselor Paul Tripp explains, our life is not made in one or two glorious moments, but is made up of the tens of thousands of seemingly mundane moments that transpire every day. This summer I’m excited to study with you five simple and seemingly unexceptional means of grace that Jesus’...

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Learning About Lent

Have you ever encountered a word that you can't quite figure out how to pronounce or what it actually means? Perhaps you've found yourself there recently. I can remember shortly after becoming a Christian being told about the meaning of Christmas and Easter. Talk about earth shattering. I'd come from a home where we celebrated Christmas with gifts, food, family, and fun!...

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Good and Angry

Up until early 2017 if you asked me for some quick help dealing with anger issues I'd have recommended only one resource Uprooting Anger by Robert Jones. Jones provides an incredibly accessible resource to an epidemic in our culture, homes, and communities. Endorsements from well known biblical counselors make clear Uprooting Anger deserves to be, needs to be even, in the...

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Where Do Sermons Come From Anyway?

On any given week, pastors and preachers all over the world are working on messages, lectures, devotions, and lessons that will be delivered to congregations. Most traditionally these homilies are delivered on Sundays and are most often referred to as sermons. You may be asking yourself the question, "Where do sermons come from anyway?" Like a young child asking questions ...

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A House and a Home

The difference between a house and a home is monumental. A house is a structure where people and their possessions dwell. A home is an immaterial understanding, pervading attitude, and an altogether place of security and rest. A house is purchased with financial means. A home is established by work, forgiveness, kindness, love, and commitment. Seeing the difference between...

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Embrace Boredom, Memorize a Deck of Cards, and Quit Social Media

Embrace boredom. Memorize a deck of cards. Quit social media. What do you think when you read those statements? I know for me when I read them initially I was not only concerned I was resistant. How exactly do you embrace boredom? Isn't that a paradox? Seriously, memorize a deck of cards? I find myself at the stage in life where I incorrectly call my three kids by names ...

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Fostering Thoughts and Changing Lives

For the past 10 years my wife and I have been parents. We've been graced with a beautiful girl and two handsome boys. Right now all three of them are 10 and under so most days are filled with love, encouragement, repentance, coaching, and heavy doses of refereeing. If you're anything like us we often feel overwhelmed, falling short, and unqualified. Parenting has a way of ...

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Who's In Your Top 5?

A couple days ago as I finished reading the newspaper. Yes! Some of us actually still read a real newspaper. I noticed on the back page there were several lists which showed what was was trending in culture on that day. Most lists were generated from iTunes and pertained to entertainment. Looking intently I was able to see which movies were being purchased, which songs we...

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A House and A Home

The difference between a house and a home is monumental. A house is a structure where people and their possessions dwell. A home is an immaterial understanding, pervading attitude, and an altogether place of security and rest. A house is purchased with financial means. A home is established by work, forgiveness, kindness, love, and commitment. Seeing the difference between...

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The Gospel According to John

Starting this Sunday, February 7 a new preaching series begins at the Church at Martinsburg. We will begin an exposition of The Gospel According to John. When I became a Christian in 1996 I was instructed to read these 21 chapters before reading anything else. I was struck then, as now, at the simplicity of John's writing and at the same time the crystal clarity he deliver...

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Best Books of January 2016

At the beginning of each month I'm planning on sharing the two books I enjoyed the most from the previous month and why that's the case. It's obviously subjective and influenced by my tastes, desires, and circumstances. I've got two simple objectives. First, I want to be able to recommend helpful books that I'm learning from and being shaped by. Second, I want to encourage...

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The Good Samaritan

The world as we know it is changing. By "we" I mean our family and by "world" I mean healthcare. A couple months ago our family shifted away from traditional health insurance (think Blue Cross Blue Shield) and ventured in a new direction. ...

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The Briefing

I, like most of you, am more of a news consumer than contributor. There are certain channels I'm drawn to and websites that I visit regularly, but many times those places aren't clear and certainly aren't concise. Recently, I began listening to a short news update each weekday morning as I commute to work. By short I mean 20 minutes or so. The president of the Southern Bap...

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Counseling the Counselor

Helpful reads for those who counsel...not just for those counseled, but for the one offering counsel....

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Family Worship 101

On January 25 Crossway announced the launch of Family Worship 101 with Don Whitney, a free, 5-day email course created to help men and women lead their homes in family worship each and every day....

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#VTREADINGCHALLENGE

January is a month for new beginnings and fresh opportunities. I know every year in January I take time to take stock of where I am in life as well as where I want to be. Our family sits down in the weeks leading up to January to evaluate plans, budgets, goals, dreams, etc...

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