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Bloggers Who APTAT

January 9, 2012

According to my stats, about 10% of you have heard of  APTAT.

The rest of you are saying “Huh??”

If you hang in here with me a little longer, I’ll explain.

As 2011 drew to a close, I was thinking and praying about what to do with this blog in 2012. I’d like to think that I blog about whatever is on my heart. But I figured out early in my blogging career that for the sake of my family’s privacy, I can’t. On those days, I can either blog about something else, link to somebody else’s blog, or not blog at all.

That brings me to my post title: Bloggers who APTAT. Because the roll of blogs I regularly read is unwieldy, I decided in 2012 to feature bloggers who share the worldview that informs the most popular posts on Days of Wonder and Grace: bloggers raising children with disabilities who publicly proclaim that God is both sovereign and good in all he is and in all he does.

To put it another way, the bloggers in my sidebar –whether they know it or not –APTAT.

APTAT is a mnemonic device I first heard in 1988 as a college student sitting in the balcony of Bethlehem’s (really) old sanctuary, listening to John Piper preach “Practical Help for Praying Help”. He explained that when faced with a challenge, he approaches God in prayer using the acronym APTAT to help him remember to:

A: Admit I can’t do it without God’s help.

P: Pray and ask God for help.

T: Trust a specific promise God made in the Bible.

A: Act in reliance of the truth of God’s promise.

T: Thank God for his faithfulness in helping me once again.

When I re-read that 1988 sermon today, I found that Pastor John made the exact point that occurred to me last Sunday morning when he exhorted us again to APTAT: it’s not just a mnemonic for praying; it is a mnemonic for living:

“…I want to ask how prayer fits in to this hour by hour Christian living.” Piper wrote in1988. “We know that prayer is right at the heart of this hour by hour life because 1 Thessalonians 5:17 says, “Pray without ceasing.” And Ephesians 6:19 says, “Pray at all times in the Spirit.” And Luke tells us in 18:1 that “Jesus told a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not to lose heart.” So we can see clearly that part of the hour by hour walk of a Christian is hour by hour praying.”

Living with disabilities in the family cultivates that very skill: praying moment by moment on the fly –eyes open, arms spread, hands reaching up and out. In 2012, my sidebar will link to people raising kids with disabilities who live and blog APTAT. (Not exclusively; these are real people! Soon I’ll write more about why I like that.)

Why do this? Because, as Pastor John summarized: “Now if we put all this together, we can say that when you live the Christian life, you live so that hour by hour Christ gets trusted, you get helped, people get served, and God gets glory. The reason we exist as a church is to help each other live like that.”

This year, my blog roll exists to help each other live like that.

If you are encouraged by a public blog that isn’t in my sidebar and is written in this vein, please share!

Quotes by John Piper. © Desiring God. Website:

2 Comments leave one →
  1. mrsungeek permalink
    January 10, 2012 11:56 pm

    Though I’m not perfect at APTATing in my life and in my blog, it’s my goal.
    I think that’s why I enjoy reading yours.


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