Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas 
Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
Manage Your Subscription -- Subscribe/Unsubscribe
Contact Us About Your Subscription

Coming Soon!
"Hillcrest Happenings" Will Replace "Winning Ways"

We're excited about some new ways to communicate with the Hillcrest Family.

First, we'll soon have a new look for the Beacon, our Hillcrest newsletter.  A full-color newsletter will come to your home six times a year with important information about Hillcrest events.  There will be a 2-month calendar inserted in the newsletter.  Plan on posting the calendar in a prominent spot.  This will enable you to keep up with what's happening, and it will prompt you to pray about our ministries!

Second, we'll send out a weekly newsletter via email.  It's called "Hillcrest Happenings."  It will still feature a devotional thought from me just like Winning Ways, but it will also include the latest news about our church family.  This will replace the Winning Ways email newsletter.  If you've been receiving Winning Ways you'll automatically be subscribed to Hillcrest Happenings.

Watch for these changes in the coming weeks.  If you have any questions or concerns, contact me.

H-E-L-P for a Spiritual Mismatch
by Tom Goodman
March 9, 2016

Are you in a spiritual mismatch?  If you're growing in Christ but your partner isn't, you're probably wondering, "What do I do?  How can I get the most important person in my life to understand the most important part of my life?  Will my spiritually unengaged partner stifle my spiritual growth?  Am I missing out on all that God wants for me because I'm united with someone who isn't interested in God?"

God's Word offers practical H-E-L-P on coping with a spiritual mismatch.

Honor your marriage.  The Bible says, "If you are a man with a wife who is not a believer but who still wants to live with you, hold on to her.  If you are a woman with a husband who is not a believer but he wants to live with you, hold on to him." (1 Corinthians 7:13, Msg).  The Greek word translated "hold on" means "don't give up."  Stay affectionate, attentive, and appreciative.  You may be frustrated that your partner doesn't share your enthusiasm for Bible study and worship, but don't let that frustration make you fail as a good partner.

Exercise restraint.  The Bible says, "If you are asked about your Christian hope, always be ready to explain it... in a gentle and respectful way." (1 Peter 3:15-16, NLT).  Understand that you are not responsible for your mate's eternity.  You are one of several tools God is using to influence your partner, but you are not single-handedly responsible for his or her conversion.  So, speak of your faith but don't push.

Live your faith.  The Bible says, "In the same way, you wives must accept the authority of your husbands, even those who refuse to accept the Good News.  Your godly lives will speak to them better than any words." (1 Peter 3:1-2, NLT).  A transformed life is what will make your partner sit up and take notice, so pay attention to your spiritual growth.

Pray!  Lee Strobel has persuaded thousands to consider Christ with books like The Case for Christ, but he was an atheist in his younger years.  When his wife became a believer, the spiritual mismatch created stress.  Privately, though, his wife was praying for him.  She prayed that God would do for Lee what God promised in Ezekiel:  "I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.  And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws." (Ezekiel 36:26-27, NIV).

If you're frustrated in a spiritual mismatch, join us this Sunday, March 13, at 10am.  We'll look a little deeper at the Bible's H-E-L-P for believers whose partners aren't interested in spiritual growth.  Don't forget to set your clocks ahead on Saturday so you can SPRING FORWARD into Daylight Savings Time on Sunday!


Note:  The H-E-L-P acrostic was adapted from Surviving a Spiritual Mismatch by Lee and Leslie Strobel.

Beacon Articles Available Online:  The staff newsletters that appear each week in the Beacon are also available on our website.  You can find them here.

Check out my weblog here.

Do you know friends who would appreciate Winning Ways?  Just forward this e-mail to them!

Have you subscribed to Winning Ways?  You can subscribe by clicking here and following the instructions.  Your e-mail address will not be sold or given away to anyone, and you can automatically change your subscription or drop it by following the easy steps provided with each e-mail.



MANAGE YOUR SUBSCRIPTIONS TO OUR EMAIL NEWSLETTERS:  Click here.  If you do not have access to the web, please send a note to to tell us of any changes you would like to make.