I quit social media

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To begin, there is the slight irony that you’re perhaps reading this via social media. Also, at one point, blogging was a type of social media, so maybe I have not totally quit social media. Also, full confession, I’m still relatively active on Goodreads and I think I have a Google Plus page? Setting all that aside, let me put the rest of my cards on the table. I still assist in managing our church social media accounts. Therefore, my exodus from social media is not all-encompassing. Yet, I think I can still safely say I quit social media.

I was first introduced to social media while working in the corporate world. I worked in the communications department and as social media became more popular, the company was debating whether to be active in those spaces. I never had joined Facebook. But Twitter and Instagram seemed intriguing so I signed up and began to delve into the world of social media. Continue reading

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Featured Post on Discipleship

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My recent post at Gospel-Centered Discipleship is up today. It’s called “Discipling the Discipled,” and focuses on revitalizing discipleship in our lives and churches when it has become scarce or seems unnecessary. For some Christians, discipleship is something they went through when the Lord first saved them and has not remained a regular part of their lives. Biblically, this is a problem and this article provides some practical help to reshape our thinking.

You can check it out at the link below:

Discipling the Discipled

Reading Life Together, Pt 2 – The Day Together

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Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Life Together is a book that has revolutionized the way I understand the church. This post is part of a five-part series that will walk through the book, highlighting key themes throughout. Hopefully, this series will act as an encouragement for you to open the book for yourself.

The second chapter of Life Together makes its way through a day in the life of a Christian community, from Bonhoeffer’s perspective. It serves as a description of what a day in his underground seminary at Finkenwalde would have been like. The day of the community is lived together, in what could be considered an almost monastic style. The day and the chapter is built around Paul’s urge to the church in Colossae, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God,” (Col. 3:16, ESV). It is from this verse that the chapter takes shape. Continue reading

Reading Life Together, Pt 1 – Community

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There are books that shape us and the way we think. Usually, they present us with new ideas or concepts. Sometimes, they make us think about familiar concepts in brand new ways. Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Life Together is one such book for me. From the time that I was first introduced to the concepts it develops from one of my mentors, to the time I first read it, so much of my thinking about the church had changed. How could my thinking about the church be so impacted by a twentieth-century, Lutheran pastor and theologian? As I was first discovering the book, I was blown away by how relevant it was to the contemporary church. However, I didn’t just find it relevant to the church overall, but it seemed relevant to my church, to the Christian community of which I was a part. Continue reading

Featured Post on Mission in New Places

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My recent post over at Gospel-Centered Discipleship is up today, called “On Mission In New Places.” It talks about entering new places (new job, school, community, etc.) with a mind for mission. It also deals with the fact that we may have been in a place for some time without recognizing the gospel’s impact on that place. The method for this is rooted in Paul’s gospel work in Athens from Acts 17.

You can check it out at the link below:

On Mission In New Places

Praying Through the Psalms

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Almost seven or eight months ago I was heading home from the church and listening to a podcast, which I normally do. That day I was catching up on a few episodes from the Ask Pastor John podcast that I had been meaning to listen to for a while. The last one that I listened to as I was nearly to my house was How to Pray the Psalms. That particular episode featured Tim Keller discussing his book, Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God when it had come out. In this episode, which I would highly recommend you check out at the link above, he talks about his practice of praying through the Psalms.

In the past, I have read through the Psalms many different times, sometimes along with reading through the book of Proverbs. However, I had never went through the Psalms with the intention of praying them. As I listened to this podcast episode, I resolved to give it a shot. Continue reading

A Review of A Little Book for New Theologians: Why and How to Study Theology by Kelly Kapic

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Kelly Kapic is professor of theological studies at Covenant College in Georgia. He has authored other books such as God So Loved, He Gave and Communion with God. Kapic wrote A Little Book For New Theologians to act as a primer for the study of theology. He also seeks to frame a proper way of approaching theology. He has used much of the content in the book as part of one of his classes that he teaches at Covenant College. Continue reading

A Review of Visit The Sick: Ministering God’s Grace in Times of Illness by Brian Croft

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I will never forget the first hospital visit I made as someone’s pastor. Though I had known the lady that I was visiting from church, I was so nervous making my way through the hospital to her room. I don’t particularly like hospitals, going to the doctor, or being sick, yet it is a part of my life and a part of those in any congregation. I leaned heavily on the wisdom of those that had gone before me in pastoral ministry as I continued to visit this dear saint throughout her illness. Had it not been for the theological, biblical, and very practical instruction I received, I fear I would have failed miserably in my visitation calls. The book, Visit the Sick: Ministering God’s Grace in Times of Illness by Brian Croft seeks to be that source of theological, biblical, and practical instruction regarding the topic of visiting the sick. Continue reading

A Review of Strange Glory: A Life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer by Charles Marsh

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Charles Marsh is a professor of religious studies at the University of Virginia and director of the Project on Lived Theology. He is the author of several other books including Reclaiming Dietrich Bonhoeffer: The Promise of His TheologyMarsh was a recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship in 2009 and the 2010 Ellen Maria Gorrissen Berlin Prize fellowship at the American Academy in Berlin.

It doesn’t take much effort to notice the recent rise in popularity of the study of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Continue reading