Melody is a social media and email specialist at Concordia University Irvine and a former copywriting intern at Concordia Publishing House. As an alum of Concordia University Chicago, she holds an English major as well as minors in communications, creative writing, and theology. Her published poetry can be found in various journals, including her alma mater's Motif. She and her husband are torn between mountains and beaches as new Californians, but they always have a good book in tow either way.

Recent Posts by Melody Martin

Five Books That Equip You to Share Your Faith

As Christians redeemed by Jesus, we get to live with the joy of the victory that Jesus has already won for us. We also live under the Great Commission—the instructions that Jesus spoke to His disciples in Matthew 28 to “make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you” (vv. 19–20). Although Jesus’ words in the Great Commission were clear, we might not know how to approach conversations about Jesus with friends and family. But we know that God uses us as instruments to share the Gospel with those around us and that the Holy Spirit works faith in us and others. Here are some books that you can use as tools to help build up the confidence to speak clearly, share the joy of salvation in daily life, and carry out our calling to make disciples.

5 Powerful Reasons to Read God’s Word Every Day

We all like the idea of reading. Think about those cozy autumn-themed paintings featuring a little wood cabin with a figure in a rocking chair cradling a book by the warm fireplace glow. Or maybe you think of those whip-smart characters in a TV show who always seems to find the clever solution to a bind through a book that they’ve read. The idea of reading is commonly compelling, but the follow-through occurs far less frequently. People with a successful daily reading habit are even more rare. Continue reading to be encouraged with five reasons why you should read every day.

Prioritizing Daily Prayer Habits

The idea of prayer is mainstream—from movie references to gift shop baubles, the word pray can be found everywhere. As Christians, we know that the Bible tells us that we are to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:16–18) and that we are to cast all our worries on God, with thanksgiving (see 1 Peter 5:7). We are instructed, and even commanded, many times in Scripture to pray. If you grew up in a Christian household or school, you were most likely guided through prayers at meals and bedtime. When these structures are no longer in place, it can become easy to lose track of the habit and you might find your prayer life slipping. Read on to contemplate on how to invigorate your own prayer life despite the distraction and busyness of life.

Three Tips to Find Focus in a Distracting Culture

Once, my pastor asked me if I liked his reference to Shakespeare in his sermon. I should have been able to laugh with him and comment that I appreciated the way it connected to the Gospel reading. Instead, I awkwardly knit my eyebrows and tried to remember what he was talking about. After thinking about it, I realized that I couldn’t remember anything that he’d said in the sermon at all. I went to brunch that day feeling guilty but also confused about what went wrong in my ability to listen to the Good News that day. If you find yourself struggling with Sunday morning brain fog or a wandering mind, keep reading to learn tactics that help you focus on Christ in a distracting culture.

Understanding Justification and Sanctification

You’ll find the words justification and sanctification used hand-in-hand in sermons and Christian books, describing what Jesus has done for us. We use these words often, but do we really understand them? The two terms have a nice ring next to each other, but it’s important to differentiate the terms. Keep reading for an overview of what justification and sanctification mean and how both words describe our lives as Christians. 

What are the Means of Grace?

You probably haven’t heard the term Means of Grace mentioned today in the morning news, on social media, or during small talk at the grocery store. It’s not part of most regular conversation, and even the words seem somewhat abstract in contrast to popular language. You hear about Means of Grace in church and maybe in your devotions, but what does the term really mean? There is a simple explanation for what Lutherans believe about these Means of Grace and why they are for you.

Subscribe to all CPH Blog topics (Worship, Read, Study, Teach, and Serve)