Friday, October 18, 2013

Reevaluating Your Calling

I have almost always felt a call into full-time ministry. And as I've mentioned elsewhere, this calling has been a source of struggle over the years. Not in the sense that I do not want to go into ministry, because I do. Rather, for years I have felt like I was in a perpetual preparation phase. I have been preparing for ministry through my Bachelor's degree, internships, and now as I work through my Master's degree. I have recently realized that I have entered into a new phase, or at least a time of transition between phases.

You see, it used to be that I was never content with what I was doing. Maybe this was simply a character flaw, but I was always yearning for something more. Recently I realized, that for the first time in a long time, I am content. Which is incredibly ironic considering my wife and I are in one of the most  uncertain times in our lives.

Yet, I have peace. Despite not being in full-time ministry, I feel a sense of purpose and fulfillment like I have never felt before. And this is all while I am "preparing" for ministry. I sometimes feel guilty that I am content because I have this fear that I will get complacent and slip farther and farther away from my calling.

Am I where God wants me to be? If so, why do I feel guilty for not being in ministry? Is it time to reevaluate my calling, or is God taking me on the scenic route to where He wants me to be?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

My Favorite #AddaWordRuinaChristianBook Tweets

It's no secret: I like Twitter. I am occasionally guilty of using too many hashtags, and I especially enjoy getting in on different hashtag trends. Despite wanting to join in on the occasional hashtag hilarity, worthy hashtags are often few and far between. Most of the time the trending hashtags are inappropriate or simply awkward. Yesterday I was pleasantly surprised when a generally wholesome and incredibly hilarious hashtag popped out of nowhere:  #AddaWordRuinaChristianBook. I was even more pleasantly surprised this morning to see that this trend was still going strong.

Here is a just a small sample of some of my favorites:

Publishers and authors are also getting in on the action:

What do you think? Hilarious? Overdone? What were your favorites?

Friday, October 4, 2013

Book Review: Apostate by Kevin Swanson

We live in a culture that in many ways is hostile to the Christian faith. We have "religious freedom" just so long as we keep our views to ourselves and don't "impose" them on anyone. Some would say that very soon this intolerance will turn to flat-out persecution. The trailer for the book, "Apostate"* by Kevin Swanson hints at this very idea:

The fact that traditional values, Biblical literacy, and belief in ultimate Truth have been steadily declining is a point that no one would argue. The real question, though, is how did we get here? What happened that triggered the demise from a generally Christian culture to a humanist empire? This is the aim of Kevin Swanson's book, "Apostate: The Men Who Destroyed the Christian West." He says,

Insofar as Western civilization retained a Christian worldview at its base, the foundations were sound. But when the philosophers of a new humanism introduced dryrot into the foundations that were predominately Christian, they planted the seed of their own destruction. By the end of this book, I hope the reader will fully understand how this happened.

While Swanson delves in deeper than I can summarize here, he follows a simple pattern that can be seen in "macro trends" through history. Ideas flow from "great minds" of philosophers to the universities then into the mass culture. First, "the intellectual philosophers developed revolutionary humanist ideas which they incorporated into their own lives." Second, "the great literary masters and artists incarnated there philosophical ideas in literary and art forms, which were taught in the liberal arts universities." Finally, "the philosophers of the 19th century penetrated the mass culture through mass media in the 20th and 21st centuries."

Swanson offers an enlightening look into the philosophers, theologians, and scientists that have attributed ideas that are now common place in our postmodern society. One of the most interesting sections for me was the infiltration of the education system. He says, "There is no better way to radicalize nations than by infiltrating the education systems."

It is a long book, but one that is worth the time to discuss the reality of what has happened to our post-Christian society. We desperately need to challenge the preconceptions of the "great thinkers" of our time. Check it out here.

*I received this book free from the publisher and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I do not profit from any merchandise purchased via links provided. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.