In more recent years, there were times when I felt that maybe I was past my depression. Most people who know me might have been surprised to know this was part of my life. As a pastor who had aspirations to get a new church off the ground, there was not much room for my depression. Especially as I encountered so many broken people, I internalized a need to be strong for their sakes and felt like I always needed to be “on.” Of course, I believed that part of being on was being real but depression didn’t feel like an appropriate expression of honesty. The truth is that as I became more competent as a pastor, I also became more proficient in functioning outwardly at a relatively high level even when my soul was being crushed internally. For me to get where I wanted to get, weakness was not an option and depression felt like a liability that needed to be hid away.
This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of public television’s Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. The milestone will bring with it a major book, a feature film (starring Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers), and even a U.S. postage stamp. When one considers all the ephemera of children’s programming, the ongoing cultural resonance of this show is staggering. Fifty years from now will anyone note the anniversary of Gumball or Clarence? I doubt it. So why does Mr. Rogers, even long after his death, still beckon us into his neighborhood?
As I preached through 2 Corinthians a few weeks ago I made the point that it is non-redemptive to not share in our suffering. That cuts both ways. It not only means we need to be there for folks a they are suffering, but we also need to share our stories. Consider all of those grieving fathers who wouldn’t have been helped had Eric decided his story was too personal, too gritty, to share. Consider all the ways God has comforted you. How might He use your story to comfort others? It’s wrong for us to withhold this opportunity to give comfort from others.
The deeply pro-choice California legislature wants pro-life organizations and citizens to do free advertising on its and the abortion lobby’s behalf. Only a movement as insidious and overreaching as the sexual revolution would insist on drafting dissenters into its ranks. This episode also demonstrates the unmasked hypocrisy at play in the abortion movement: it is hard to imagine a scenario where progressives would adopt the position of forcing Planned Parenthood, for example, to advertise on behalf of pregnancy care centers. This law is deeply biased toward abortion at the expense of sound public policy and human dignity.
Although many people associate evangelicalism with modern religious leaders like Billy Graham and Rick Warren, its roots can be traced back to the eighteenth century. In response to social, political, economic, and intellectual transformations that were transatlantic in scope, eighteenth-century Protestants throughout the Atlantic world gradually created a new kind of faith that we now call evangelicalism. The word itself was not new, and its roots stretch back to the Greek evangelion, meaning “gospel.” The sixteenth-century Protestant reformers used evangelical to emphasize their reliance on the gospel message they found in scripture.
In recent years, I’ve had the opportunity to spend some time with Andrew here and there (including an unexpected lunch one afternoon in Cambridge!), and even though I’ve expressed to him my gratitude for his musical labors, I’ve long wanted to pay tribute with words of my own, in hopes that I might introduce others to his work.
So, in this guide I walk through each of Andrew’s albums, providing a brief overview and some thoughts on each offering.
A favorite from the archives:
One of the most shocking things to me is how little Christians are encouraged to think deeply about creation and the Trinity.
I’m not talking about all the various arguments for methods of creation, views on the age of the earth or anything like that. Nor am I referring to attempting to understand the complexities of what Scripture reveals of the equally divine natures of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and how we can have a God who is three yet one. No what I’m referring to the central reality of creation being a divine—and more specifically, a Trinitarian—work.