‘Tis a time of thanksgiving, reflection, and continued prayers. I’m often asked how I got a book published. Let’s face it – I didn’t. God did. Seriously. From beginning to end, this entire process has been a grand testimony of God’s grace in my life. Who knew that the kid who almost flunked out of English class his senior year in high school would one day be a journalism major, career writer, and eventual published author? Not I. But such is the business of our God. He has a good hankering for using foolish ones like me; after all, we serve well as public displays of his grace (1 Corinthians 1:26-29). The Two Fears: Tremble Before God Alone comes out in a few days. With the book’s release around the corner, I thought I’d share four things I learned during this whole process followed by four ways you can pray.
When I exited itinerant (traveling) ministry to become a pastor, I left crowds that were in the thousands and finances that more than provided for my family, to go to a small, 160-person church that cut my annual salary in half. . . . The truth is I didn’t become the pastor of a church in the suburbs of Dallas because I had a grand vision for growing a dynamic, life-transforming, church-planting, gospel-preaching, God-centered church. I took the position because after a great deal of conversations, prayers and fasting, my wife and I felt it was the direction God, through the Holy Spirit, was leading us.
Terrified that you’ll have a Mark 16 kind of Easter? “When they heard that Jesus was alive and that she had seen him, they did not believe it.” People may come, hear the great news of the resurrection, that you have seen this and they will not believe. They may walk out totally unchanged. You need to know that there is a greater reality here. You are loved.
And I think what we’ve found, as far as categories go, is that one can be conservative/reformed and still be “missional” if we loosely define missional as being someone who outwardly cares about any combination of the following: the poor, the city, the arts, outreach in general, impoverished peoples worldwide. If that’s our working definition, we should probably all be missional in some way, shape or form. For that matter, nobody would really say they aren’t missional, while there are many who would say they’re not emergent (and even write books by that title). So missional is sort of a catch-all that can encompass people from both groups. If we were to Venn-diagram the whole thing, “missional” would be the overlapping part in the middle with emergent/ing representing a big circle on the left, and reformed/conservative in a big circle on the right.
This week’s $5 Friday offerings at Ligonier.org include A Habitual Sight of Him: The Christ-Centered Piety of Thomas Goodwin and the Ecclesiastes and Objections Answered teaching series by R.C. Sproul, among other offerings. Also, starting March 31, you can save 20% storewide until April 4 using code Easter20.