Just For Starters

Words fascinate me. Grammar and syntax can easily capture my attention. The dictionary app is possibly my favorite app ever. Basically, I’m a huge fan of language in general. Granted, that’s probably not the most interesting or intriguing thing I could say to make a first impression, but, before you search for a more exciting blog (maybe one with time travel or swords or sharp, pointy teeth), let me elaborate a little more on this fascination.



I think language captivates me so because of its immense scope. The myriad of potential ways you can put words together is almost breathtaking to me. Every story, every poem, every line of every page is teeming with creativity (or, in some cases, the lack thereof). There’s so much to explore in every work. Why use this word instead of that word? Why this thought and not that? What’s the motivation? What’s the context? Why so serious (reference intended)? The questions go on and on! Language is so rich, so vast, and I thoroughly enjoy mining its depths and exploring its limits. It’s truly a beautiful thing.

Even more amazing than language itself is the God who made language possible, the almighty, sovereign, holy Lord of all. I love the fact that one of the major ways God chose to reveal himself was through language. I love that Jesus is referred to as “The Word” in John. I love that God gave us a Book through which we might know him, and I have answered his call by setting the study of the Book as my practice for the purpose of knowing God more intimately. And, one of the clearest and most challenging descriptions of that pursuit is found in the verse that inspired this blog’s title.

John writes, “Whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked” (1 John 2:6). I believe that true life is found only in surrender to Christ, in faith rooted in the work of his life and death and resurrection, in obedience in love out of a life reborn. The follower’s life ought to look like the leader’s. I strive to live as Christ lived not to earn my salvation, but out of response to him because he has already saved me and given me life in his name.

I like how Paul said it in his letter to the Philippians:

But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith – that I may known him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.
– Philippians 3:7-11

This, then, is my aim. I want to know him, to learn how to walk as he walked, all for his glory and all for his kingdom. I want to pray as he prayed, speak as he spoke, love as he loved, live as he lived. I want to die to myself, forsaking all the ways of the darkened world around me and living instead for a higher, purer purpose. I want people to see Jesus when they see me. I want people to notice the difference he makes when they observe my life. I want the Gospel to be my song, and I pray I’m always caught singing. I don’t claim to be an expert at this. In fact, I fail more often than I succeed. But I truly do strive to live for him, and I pray my journey may be a blessing to your own.

In my pursuit, I find that writing helps me to think. Considering a thought with pen and page allows me to work through it more easily, more thoroughly. Sometimes those thoughts are inspired by the Word of God itself, sometimes by music, pastors, theologians, poets, friends, family, life in general, etc. The inspiration can come from just about anywhere. This blog, Lord willing, will be the overflow of those explorations. Whether through devotional thoughts or short stories or poetry, I hope my journey can help you along in yours. As I attempt to place words together like pieces of a puzzle, I pray God blesses the work and opens our hearts to his truth.

Through it all, may God be glorified, may the church be edified, and may sinners be saved. All in the name of the beautiful, saving Son.

For His Glory,
Joe

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