On 12th May, the Lord willing, I will celebrate my twenty-fifth birthday. Before anyone retorts that I haven’t aged too well, I mean the anniversary of my being born again. The day God graciously “rescued [me] from the dominion of darkness and brought [me] into the kingdom of the Son he loves” (Colossians 1:13).
Enjoying God and experiencing satisfaction in Christ are exciting elements of the Christian life. In addition to enjoyment and satisfaction though, St Paul makes this assertion in 1 Timothy 6:6: “But godliness with contentment is great gain”
Do you like God? Until recently, I had never been asked that question. But author Tim Chester posed it in his opening talk at TFT’s 2016 National Conference. Does it matter if I like God? The most important commandment, says Jesus, is to ‘love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength’ (Mark 12:30). Nothing about liking God. Like him or not, surely I just have to get on with the business of loving him. Don’t I? He is, after all, God.
When asked to write this article I was forced to the realisation that I am a 30-year-old male choosing celibacy. That is probably relatively unusual, so I must know at least something on the issue. The teacher in me couldn’t resist loosely dividing this into three areas: what does it mean to be celibate, what can help us achieve that goal and why bother?
One of the most frequently asked questions when I speak at churches and conferences on the subject of same-sex temptations is this: “Is it sinful for someone simply to be attracted to a person of the same-sex?” Trying to give an answer that is both true to scripture and practically helpful in just a few sentences is always something of a challenge, so this article is written in part to provide a more comprehensive and thought-through response.
The long awaited book "Satisfaction Guaranteed" has now been published.
Convinced that real satisfaction can be found only in a relationship with Jesus Christ, Jonathan Berry (TFT Director) with Rob Wood (TFT Teaching and Pastoral Assistant) aim to encourage, inspire and equip all who struggle with same-sex temptations to resist, but ‘make him their greatest treasure and live life to the full’.
In this book, Shaw shows that a celibate godly life is plausible and satisfying, despite what our culture says to the contrary.
On Saturday 11th June, as a joint event held by True Freedom Trust and Living Out, around 200 people gathered in a church in London to hear about the God who loves to satisfy the desires of his people, as long as we look to Him to be satisfied!
Jonathan Berry, TFT Director, spoke in the first session from Psalm 16 on "Trusting in the God who delights to satisfy". Jonathan was also launching his book (along with co-author Rob Wood) "Satisfaction Guaranteed".