Picture of an Elder

August 27, 2013

In the Christian Classic, Pilgrim’s Progress, written by John Bunyan in the 1670’s, the main character, Christian, arrives at the Interpreter’s house:

“Then said Interpreter, Come in; I will show you that which will be profitable to you. So he commanded his man to light the candle, and bid Christian to follow him; so he led him into a private room, and bid his man to open a door; the which when he had done, Christian saw the picture of a serious person hanging on the wall; and this was the fashion of it: he had eyes lifted up to Heaven, the best of books in his hand, the Law of truth was written upon his lips, the world was behind his back; he stood as if he pleaded with men and a crown of gold did hang over his head.

Then said Christian, What does this mean? The Interpreter answered: The man whose picture this is, is one of a thousand: he can beget children, travail in birth with children, and nurse them himself when they are born. And whereas you see him with his eyes lift up to heaven, the best of books in his hand, and the law of truth written on his lips: it is to show you, that his work is to know and unfold dark things to sinners; even as also you see him stand as if he pleaded with men. And whereas you see the world as cast behind him, and that a crown hands over his head; that is to show you, that slighting and despising the things that are present, for the love that he has to his Master’s service, he is sure in the world that comes next to have glory for his reward.

Now, said the Interpreter, I have shown you this picture first, because the man whose picture this is, is the only man whom the Lord of the place where you are going has authorized to be your guide in all difficult places you may meet with in the way: wherefore take good heed to what I have shown you, and bear well in your mind what you have seen, lest in your Journey you meet with some that pretend to lead you right, but their way goes down to death.”

Here is a portrait of a man whose eyes are lifted up to Heaven, hands hold tightly to the best of books, lips speak the Law of truth, back is turned resolutely away from the world, position is to stand and plead with men… This is a portrait of a faithful pastor.

The New Testament assumes that every Christian will be part of a local church and, as such, under the guidance of faithful elders who are watching over his/her soul. More explicitly, passages such as 1Thessalonians 5:12-13, Hebrews 13:7-18, and 1Timothy 5:17-25 exhort Christians, and the church in general, as to the kind of relationship and responsibilities we have to the elders that Christ has given.

As you consider nine primary responsibilities found in these three texts, ask yourself if you have the kind of relationship with your elders that you see described here.

1 Thessalonians 5:12-13
1. HONOR the work of your elders. (1 Thessalonians 5:12-13)

Hebrews 13:7-18
2. IMITATE the faith of your elders. (Hebrews 13:7-8)
3. FOLLOW the teaching of your elders. (Hebrews 13:9-16)
4. SUBMIT to the authority of your elders. (Hebrews 13:17)
5. PRAY for the faithfulness of your elders. (Hebrews 13:18)

1 Timothy 5:17-25
6. PROVIDE for the ministry of your elders. (1 Timothy 5:17-18)
7. PROTECT the reputation of your elders. (1 Timothy 5:19)
8. REBUKE the sin of your unrepentant elders. (1 Timothy 5:20-21)
9. PARTICIPATE in the selection of your elders. (1 Timothy 5:22)


Fb Warning Label

August 26, 2013

Facebook has been linked, in numerous clinical trials both here and around the world, to feelings of intense envy, dissatisfaction with life, insomnia, major depression, disrupted friendships and feelings of isolation — especially in young people.

Facebook may well be addictive, as well—just like tobacco.

Facebook has been linked to feelings of intense envy, dissatisfaction with life, insomnia, major depression, disrupted friendships and feelings of isolation—especially in young people.
Many young people have told me, in my practice of psychiatry, that they want to stop using Facebook and feel it negatively impacts their lives, but “just can’t stop.” My colleagues tell me they are hearing the same thing from their patients.

The number of people at risk for psychological damage from Facebook is in the hundreds of millions, in North America alone (with hundreds of millions more at risk, around the globe). And, I would argue, there is now plenty of evidence that people should be warned by the nation’s most prominent public health official that, “Academic research studies have determined that using Facebook may be dangerous to your health and may cause serious psychiatric symptoms.” In the alternate, a warning could state, “Academic Research Suggests Facebook Use Is Addictive and May Cause Psychiatric Disorders.”

Placing such a warning on Facebook would be a first, serious step by the U.S. government to alert the public to known hazards of Facebook use, and over-use. It would also set the stage for putting Facebook on notice that they cannot ignore the growing number of studies that link their product to more than one illness.

I have written before that class action lawyers are, no doubt, eyeing Facebook for its liability in causing or deepening psychiatric disorders in, perhaps, hundreds of thousands of cases.

The only reason the Surgeon General would fail to act would be if he considers psychiatric/psychological disorders to not be as serious as physical ones. Because if it were seriously suspected — and backed up by studies around the world — that swimming pools were causing diabetes or hypertension in hundreds of thousands of Americans, you can bet there would be posters required to warn folks of the possible danger.

Certainly, the National Institute of Mental Health should launch a very large scale trial of the impact of Facebook on adolescents and teenagers, to start with. But there is no reason to wait for that more expanded data to flow in.

Facebook endangers users’ psychological well-being. I believe the company knows this — or should know it — and bear liability for any harm done users from use/overuse of the drug they are selling, from today, forward. And, I believe the Surgeon General knows it, too. Now, he should make sure all Americans are put on notice.

Dr. Keith Ablow

America has turned…

August 24, 2013

against Christians. This is real people.

“The idea that free people can be ‘compelled by law to compromise the very religious beliefs that inspire their lives’ as the ‘price of citizenship’ is a chilling and unprecedented attack on freedom,” said Jordan Lorence, senior counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom and one of the lawyers for Elane Photography. “Americans are now on notice that the price of doing business is their freedom. We are considering our next steps, including asking the U.S. Supreme Court to right this wrong.”

Ken Klukowsi, of the Family Research Council, called the ruling profoundly disturbing.
“This decision may bring to Americans’ attention the serious threat to religious liberty posed by overbearing government agencies when it comes to redefining marriage,” he said. “Rather than live and let live, this is forcing religious Americans to violate the basic teachings of their faith or lose their jobs.”

Repent and Believe

August 21, 2013


It’s amazing how often people think they are giving the Christian message or have heard the gospel and yet there is nothing about sin and repentance.

The message of the gospel is not simply an invitation to know God’s love or enter his family or to live forever. That is all true. But the call to saving faith must always include a call to repentance.

Acts 13:38-39 “Let it be known to you therefore, brothers, that through this man [Jesus] forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, and by him everyone who believes is freed from everything from which you could not be freed by the Law of Moses.”

The Law of Moses cannot free you. You cannot go to sleep at night knowing for certain that you are righteous before God based on your observance of the Decalogue. The law cannot set you free of your condemnation, that is why the High Priest had to offer sacrifices year after year, for centuries.

You cannot be freed from your sins by the intercession of your ancestors, or your moral religiosity. You cannot be set free from your sins because you have an active social conscience and you’re very engaged in issues of justice, or because you are a very fastidious homeschooling family. Only Jesus, the Savior, can set you free.

We have a problem. We are slaves to sin. We are under the curse and penalty of sin. We love sin. We live in sin. We were born in sin and apart from Christ, we die in sin.

The only freedom: repent and believe.



August 21, 2013

When I graduated college, I saw many of my Christian friends apply for campus ministry and rush to missions work in Africa for fear they would not find significance at a standard 9-to-5 desk job.

I watched plans to become dance teachers, chiropractors, and entrepreneurs dissolve as my peers gave up their dreams in order to pursue “full-time ministry.” They feared one day waking up and feeling they weren’t changing the world or advancing the kingdom of God. They were ready to do anything to avoid that gnawing feeling.

They aren’t alone. Today, three-quarters of Americans feel unfulfilled in their work — and job dissatisfaction may be an even greater struggle in the Christian community. What do we do, then, when we feel our work is useless?
Biblical Basis of Work

When thinking about our vocations, we should remember God created us to work. According to Genesis 2:15, work is not a curse, but a gift from God given to us before the fall. Work was—and still is—a tool for us to develop the creation and be salt and light in the world for the glory of God and his kingdom.

As a result of the fall, however, our work will at times be frustrating and difficult. So work can often seem useless. But Christ came to restore all things, which means even the most boring job is redeemable.
All Work Is God’s Work

Though some work may seem useless, Christians understand that all work is God’s work. Our work only seems insignificant because we fail to grasp the big picture. This is what economists refer to as the “knowledge problem.” The knowledge problem means we can’t always see the big picture because knowledge is dispersed among many people; no one person knows everything. In the vocational sense, this means we may not understand how our work is part of a much larger economic dynamic. If we can’t easily see how our work contributes to the common good, we may understate the effect of what we do.

Some positions make it difficult for workers to see the end product, but that certainly does not mean that their work is insignificant. Just because a factory worker doesn’t receive the instant gratification of seeing the final product that he helped to create doesn’t change the reality that his effort contributed to that product.

Hugh Whelchel articulates this idea well when he writes,
The work of believers possesses a significance which goes far beyond the visible results of that work. . . . All human work, however lowly, is capable of glorifying God. Work is the potentially productive act of praise.

It’s important to remember that the value of our work may never be fully realized in our lifetime. In medieval times, it could take hundreds of years to build a single cathedral. The laborer laying the cornerstone might never live to see the top of the steeple.

Clearly, the knowledge problem is also a faith problem. Rather than being discouraged in seemingly insignificant work, we can humbly rest in the confidence of God’s master plan.

However, there are a few cases in which work is truly useless. They occur in industries where demand for a product or service is immoral or if the product or service doesn’t meet the intended purpose. Examples include anything from pornographic material to goods that do not function properly.
Every Task Significant

All good work can be “Christian” and no work that serves mankind is useless. Even interns who enter contact names into a spreadsheet add significant value to their organization—and the organization’s mission—through their labor. Likewise, the factory worker who churns out widgets day after day is actively participating in the work of God.

Though some routine assignments seem unimportant, every task is significant if God has called you to it. We fulfill our call to Christian work when we put our hands to the task he has called us to do—and leave it to God to see the final outcome.



August 19, 2013

“How much does your life weigh? Imagine for a second that you’re carrying a backpack. I want you to pack it with all the stuff that you have in your life… you start with the little things. The shelves, the drawers, the knickknacks, then you start adding larger stuff. Clothes, tabletop appliances, lamps, your TV… the backpack should be getting pretty heavy now. You go bigger. Your couch, your car, your home… I want you to stuff it all into that backpack. Now I want you to fill it with people. Start with casual acquaintances, friends of friends, folks around the office… and then you move into the people you trust with your most intimate secrets. Your brothers, your sisters, your children, your parents and finally your husband, your wife, your boyfriend, your girlfriend. You get them into that backpack. Feel the weight of that bag.” – Ryan Bingham, Up in the Air

Are you exhausted? I am.

Part of my exhaustion is my work schedule, my responsibilities, and my commitments…the accumulation of my life circumstances that Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) is talking about in the quote above. Your job might be different than mine, you might have fewer kids than I do (or more), and you might be older than I am (or younger). But whatever your circumstances might be, or whatever stage of life you’re in, admit it: you’re tired.

The fact is, real life is long on law and short on grace—the demands never stop, the failures pile up, and fears set in. Life requires many things from us—a successful career, a stable marriage, well-behaved and emotionally adjusted children, a certain quality of life. When life gets hard, the hardworking work harder. Is it any wonder we’re all so weary? We do our best to do better, do more, and do now. The cultural pressure to take care of yourself and “make it happen” by working harder and smarter wears us out. We live with long lists of things to accomplish, people to please, and situations to manage. Anyone living inside the guilt, anxiety, stress, strain, and uncertainty of daily life knows from instinct, and hard experience, that the weight of life is heavy. We are all in need of some relief.

Believe it or not, the reason we’re so tired isn’t simply because our children are difficult or that life is busy or that the demands at work keep piling up. The reason we’re so tired is that we’re trying to save ourselves. Let me explain.

Every single one of us is plagued by performanicism. Performancism is the mindset that equates our identity and value directly with our performance. Performancism sees achievement not as something we do or don’t do but something we are or aren’t. The colleges we attended are more than the places where we were educated – they’re labels that define our value. The money we earn and the car we drive aren’t simply a reflection of the job we have – they’re a reflection of us. How I look, how intelligent I am, how my kids turn out, what people think of me…these things are synonymous with my worth. In the world of performancism, success equals life and failure equals death.

In other words, we’re exhausted because we’re trying to rescue ourselves from a meaningless, valueless, worthless existence by what we do and by who we can become. We’re weary because we feel the burden to make it, to get it done, to impress, to earn, to succeed, to be validated. After all, we conclude, our very identity is at stake.

So if the real cause of our exhaustion is the drive to save ourselves, what’s the cure?

In short — it’s the Gospel.

When Jesus announces in Luke 4 that he came to set the captives free, we have to ask, “Free from what?”

In Christ, we are free from the slavery of having to rescue ourselves. Free from the pressure of having to make it on our own. Free from the demand to measure up, from the burden to get it all right, from the obligation to fix ourselves and find ourselves. He came to liberate us from the slavish need to be right, rewarded, regarded, and respected. Because Jesus came to set the captives free, life doesn’t have to be an exhausting effort to establish ourselves, justify ourselves, validate ourselves. We don’t need to spend our lives trying to get to the front, control outcomes, and manufacture a safe, controllable existence. We don’t have to live under the weight of having to make all our dreams come true if we’re going to matter.

The Gospel of grace frees us from the obsessive pressure to perform, the enslaving demand to become. The Gospel liberatingly declares that in Christ “we already are.”

Here’s some really good news to the weary and heavy laden: Who you really are has nothing to do with you — how much you can accomplish, who you can become, your behavior (good or bad), your strengths, your weaknesses, your past, your present, your future, your family background, your education, your looks. Your identity is firmly anchored in Jesus’ accomplishment, not yours; his strength, not yours; his performance, not yours; his victory, not yours.

The Gospel, in other words, doesn’t just free you from what other people think about you, it frees you from what you think about yourself.

So…relax. And rejoice. Everything you need and long for you already possess in Christ. The pressure’s off.

The only thing that can silence the internal (and exhausting) voice that is constantly telling us to do more and try harder is to constantly hear the external (and inexhaustible) voice that says, once and for all, “It is finished.”


Ingredients for Evangelism

August 15, 2013

I’m convinced it’s better for your church to have an evangelistic culture than just a series of evangelistic programs.

In a church with a program-driven approach to evangelism, sharing the gospel can become something mostly for certain people at certain times, like when the evangelism team goes out visiting.

But in a church with an evangelistic culture, each member is encouraged to play a role within the larger church’s effort to reach the people around them with the message of salvation in Jesus. It becomes a part of every believer’s life.


If you are looking to create an evangelistic culture in your local church, here are three ingredients that may help.

1. The Gospel: the Fuel for an Evangelistic Culture

The gospel message is the fuel that feeds an evangelistic culture in a church. We all naturally share the things that excite our hearts. If the Philadelphia Eagles ever won the Super Bowl (I know…), you wouldn’t have much luck shutting me up about it. In the same way, if we want to create cultures in our churches where it’s natural for members to talk to about the gospel message with non-Christians, then we need to help our members fall deeply in love with the gospel.

That means they must understand the gospel message. It also means that the beauty of the gospel message must be put on display week in and week out in our churches. When Christians truly grasp the depth of their sin, the wonderful holiness of God, the perfection of Christ and the depth of his suffering for them, the power of his resurrection and the gift of eternal life for all who repent and believe, our affections for Christ will grow.

The gospel message also frees Christians from motivations that might lead them to dislike evangelism. The gospel says that we don’t have to evangelize in order to earn God’s love. Our position in God’s family isn’t dependent on how often or how well we share the gospel. Instead we can be certain of God’s love, which frees us from the overwhelming concern for the opinions of people around us that makes us afraid to speak up about Jesus.

2. Prayer: the Power of an Evangelistic Culture

Second, a church that is sharing the gospel must be committed to prayer. Evangelism seems a hopeless task. We are calling spiritually dead people to embrace life. How are we going to equip and encourage people for that work? It seems utterly futile.

That’s why an evangelistic culture must begin with a culture of prayer. In prayer, Christians go to the Lord with a confession of their insufficiency for the task of evangelism and his sufficient strength. God alone can make the seeds that we sow spring up to eternal life in our hearers, and so we must begin with prayer.

In our church, this particularly happens on Sunday evenings. We gather together as a congregation to pray that the Lord would spread his gospel through us. People share gospel conversations that they’ve had during the previous week, or opportunities that they hope to have in the coming week.

This prayer time serves a few purposes. First, it commits these things to the Lord, who normally has us ask before we receive in these matters (James 4:2).

Second, it involves the whole church in the work of sharing the gospel. It’s not a burden or a project that we undertake alone, but we have brothers and sisters to pray and encourage us.

Third, this sharing makes it clear that evangelism is the work of “normal” Christians. The people asking for prayer aren’t usually pastors or elders or gifted evangelists. They are just believers who have embraced their calling to share the good news with the people around them.

Finally, this prayer time gives people a good place to begin reaching out to their neighbors and co-workers. If people are nervous or uncertain about sharing the good news, we encourage them to begin with prayer. They can pray that the Lord would give them opportunities, and that he would bring people who need the gospel to their attention. That’s a much less intimidating first step than rushing out with a tract in hand.

3. Training: the Blueprint for an Evangelistic Culture.

A third ingredient is training, the blueprint for an evangelistic culture. Remember that the goal is for our churches to have evangelistic cultures rather than merely evangelistic programs. But that doesn’t mean that there is no place for church leaders to organize and equip people to share the gospel. In fact, a love for the gospel and prayer may not be enough to motivate Christians to a lifestyle of evangelism.

While evangelism will come naturally to some people in your congregation, there will be many people who love the gospel and pray faithfully but still need to be equipped to share the gospel. Here are a few ways church leaders can equip the congregation:

Recommend good books on the topic. J.I. Packer’s Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God and Mack Stiles’ Speaking of Jesus are two of my favorites. Read these books with the people you are discipling, give them away to people who will read them, or make them available through you church library.

Bring people with you when you have a chance to share the gospel. When I am invited to give an evangelistic talk, I bring a younger person from the church with me. It’s a good opportunity to model for them how to share the good news.

Address unbelievers in your sermons. Your people will grow from listening to you engage people who don’t know Jesus with the claims of the gospel. Take time to thoughtfully consider the questions or objections that an unbeliever might have to your sermon’s message, and then speak to those issues.

Run evangelistic meetings where people can bring friends and get help sharing the gospel. If your church can host an evangelistic coffee house meeting or a program like Christianity Explored, you will give opportunities for your people to invite their friends and observe how they can share the gospel as well.


There is no program that can create an evangelistic culture in your church. Instead, it will require church leaders to teach, model, and pray until members of the church realize that sharing the gospel is their privilege and responsibility. A church with such a culture will be far more fruitful and effective than a church with even the most effective programs and strategies.

Mike McKinley is the senior pastor of Sterling Park Baptist Church in Sterling, Virginia, and is the author, most recently, of The Devil Made Me Do It (Good Book Company, 2013).


August 14, 2013

I will walk within my house in the integrity of my heart. I will set no worthless thing before my eyes.
Psalm 101:2–3

“We Americans recently passed one of those cultural milestones we’ve been slouching toward for years: We now have more television sets in our homes than people.

Nielsen Media Research found that about half of us now have three or more TVs, with a sizable number boasting as many as seven or eight. And, believe it or not, 25 percent of two-year-olds have a TV in their room.”

Let’s remove this distraction from our homes, our lives.


Managing Conflict

August 13, 2013

Which one are you?

Relationships break down for a variety of reasons, but some feuds and fights could easily be prevented if, during the initial stages of conflict, disagreements were handled wisely. Relationships are more likely preserved when people on both sides recognize the different ways that people go about managing and resolving conflict.

In Cross-Cultural Conflict: Building Relationships for Effective Ministry, Duane Elmer draws on the work of R. H. Thomas and K. W. Kilmann to summarize five ways those of us in the West handle conflict:

1. The Win-Lose Strategy

“Win-lose people assume that everything should be seen as right or wrong,” Elmer writes (34). For this reason, they see things in black and white and resist any notion of “gray.” Negotiation is a form of compromise. When differences of opinion arise, the win-lose person assumes that the one who disagrees is the one who is wrong.

Flexibility is a sign of weakness. Energy should be expended not in trying to find common ground, but in trying to convince the other person of the wrongness of their viewpoint. Elmer lists a variety of tactics used to convince others to change their minds: physical force, threats, intimidation, silence, verbiage and volume, pointing out past failures, pulling rank, rewarding or spiritual one-upmanship (35).

It is not surprising that a win-lose person is willing to sacrifice relationships in order to get their way and remain “right.” The way to confront a win-lose person is to avoid an argument and instead rely on a group to show the person where they are wrong and why it is important for them to resist being dogmatic or stubborn in areas of preference, not principle.

There are, of course, certain areas we should be dogmatically unchanging in (certain doctrinal commitments or moral standards). But to allow convictions on personal matters become all-encompassing, to the point where relationships break down due to unbending dogmatism, is to go beyond Scripture and fail to take into consideration the possible flaws in one’s own thinking. Elmer recommends we “be dogmatic and stubborn where God is, and flexible where He is” (36). This is good advice, but win-lose people too often assume that their position and God’s are the same!

2. Avoidance

On the opposite spectrum of the win-lose person, those who avoid disagreement assume that differences are always bad because they might lead to relational breakdown. Confrontational conflict may cause a rupture in the relationship; therefore, we ought to minimize the opportunities for confrontation and hope that the disagreements will resolve themselves.

There may be times when avoidance of conflict is the best approach. After all, we should not crave confrontation in our relationships. Wisdom may dictate a season of silence, in which heated emotions have time to cool off so that reason can prevail.

But those who tend to avoid conflict usually wind up with weak and superficial relationships that are unable to stand up under the strain of differing opinions. Important decisions are postponed. Issues bubbling up under the surface are never addressed, and as a result, relationships remain surface level. Avoiding conflict at all costs is often a sign of weakness and insecurity.

3. Giving In

Another approach to managing conflict is to give in to the stronger person. In order to accommodate another point of view or smooth over the differences, this person yields to others and maintains peace.

Like those who avoid conflict, relationships are seen as more important than “being right.” But unlike the “avoiders,” those who give in are more likely to yield so that the relationship can still be robust and disagreement be minimized.

Elmer calls this person a “people-pleaser.” They tend to minimize their difference of opinion to the point their own personal goals and values are forfeited. Occasionally, the one who gives in will be pushed to the limit and will adopt a win-lose posture on other issues. But for the most part, they are likely to give up their own viewpoint in order to keep the peace.

There are times when giving in is the wisest option. Elmer points out certain times when giving in is the preferred choice. For example, when the issue is of little consequence and the relationship is obviously more important than the disagreement, it is wise to admit you may be wrong.

Another example would be to give in at one point in order to win at a different point. Every relationship has a built-in amount of give-and-take.

Or perhaps you might give in so that others may have room to make their own mistakes, face the consequences, and grow as a result. The difficulty is in knowing when to give in and when to stand firm.

4. Compromise

For the win-lose person, compromise is the same as capitulation and should always be avoided. But there are many people who choose to view conflict from a “realistic” perspective in which it is already assumed that no one will get everything they want all the time. Because it is impossible for everyone to have everything, they believe all people should be willing to give a little in order to get a little. “Life is the art of negotiating to some happy middle ground,” Elmer writes (41).

Compromise is the best approach when both sides are pushing to extremes, asking for more than they want, so that in the end all are expected to meet in the middle and still walk away with most of their desires met. In theory, everyone should be happy with the end result.

But, as Elmer points out, this method means both parties must be willing to give up something important to them (42). The risk is that the “happy middle ground” will make both sides unsatisfied and unhappy. Compromise is also problematic if one of the negotiating parties has disproportionate power. At this point, it is likely that the powerful party will get more of its demands and the other party will walk away dissatisfied with the results.

5. Carefronting

According to Elmer, “carefronting means directly approaching the other person in a caring way so that achieving a win-win solution is most likely” (42). In order to accomplish this task, the two parties must agree to come together, commit to preserve the relationship, creatively find a solution that satisfies both sides, utilize reason over emotion, separate the person from the issue, and strive for a solution that will bring peace.

Many assume that carefronting is the biblical approach to resolving conflict. Indeed, there are similarities with Jesus’ instructions in Matthew 18:15-17 for confronting a wayward brother or sister in Christ.

But Elmer cautions us against thinking that carefronting is the only model of conflict resolution. Certain cultural tendencies may make this model more applicable in some settings as opposed to others.

What About You?

Which of these approaches do you tend toward? How have you resolved conflicts with people who manage conflict differently than you do?

Trevin Wax


August 13, 2013

Christianity is all about forgiveness. And a great marriage is, in the words of Ruth Bell Graham, “the union of two good forgivers.” Two imperfect people living together will need to forgive each other multiple times–maybe even each day. And by the way, If you add children to the family, the need for forgiveness will be compounded because of the increased number of sinful people who are living under one roof!