I’m not a huge fan of attention. My friends and family laugh because I won’t make a big deal about awards or accomplishments. When I play with the Stephen Michel Band, I like to hide in the back of the stage behind everyone else. I tend to downplay things a bit too much. I realize that some things should be celebrated, however, and I don’t want to appear apathetic about major events. So, with that being said, here are a few updates.
Two weeks ago, I received the Broadman & Holman Seminarian Award from NOBTS. Saturday, I graduated with my Masterof Divinity degree with a specialization in Christian Thought. I hope to continue on at seminary, pursuing a PhD in theology with the hope of teaching and writing full time. That may change over time depending on God’s leading, but, until he leads elsewhere, I plan to stay on this course.
I want to thank everyone who played a part in my seminary experience so far. God has used these last four years to shape me in many ways. I’ve read hundreds of pages, I’ve written thousands of words, and learned more than I imagined I would. Through it all, God used friends and family to continually sharpen and challenge me, to equip and encourage me, and to make me the man I am today. I see my limitations more clearly than ever before, yet I also see God’s faithfulness to use us, weak as we are, for the kingdom. I pray God will be glorified by my life always, and I thank you for helping to make me the man he wants me to be. May we be found faithful.
Occasionally, the church will highlight a specific show or movie that it feels warrants some attention, often employing social media to convey their message.
I’ve always been a bit fascinated with fear. When I was little, when the mildest frights could send me running, I still looked forward to October and to Halloween, the decorations, the costumes, and the spooky movies on the Disney channel each captivating my interest. In literature, I loved reading Edgar Allan Poe with his mastery of the macabre. Even in Batman cartoons and video games, I found myself enjoying the stories with Scarecrow more than the stories with many of the other villains. Fear, in a way, has been a lifelong interest. Continue reading
I don’t need to know everything. Continue reading
In honor of National Poetry Month, I wanted to highlight a few of the poets and poems that have influenced my own writing. I recognize that my voice, in large part, has been trained by the voices of others, and I give my highest recommendations to their art. May they inspire you as they have inspired me. Continue reading
Although breakups occur often in our culture, we don’t seem to know how to handle them well.
Matt Chandler, a pastor in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, once imitated Mark Driscoll, another pastor, to illustrate Paul’s charge to Timothy to “fulfill your ministry” in 2 Timothy 4:5. In the video, Chandler shows that simply copying a popular pastor’s style of teaching will not make one’s preaching powerful. Instead, each one must do as the verse says and fulfill his own ministry, carrying out the work God assigned him to do. Though short, the video stuck with me, reminding me to fulfill the ministry to which God has called me and to avoid unwise comparison and copying in the work. Continue reading
The mini-fridge in the hotel room made a sound like a Geiger-counter in Chernobyl. That strange detail stood out to me as I tried to fall asleep in Pocahontas, Arkansas; that, and insecurity. I was preparing to represent my school at a college seminary day, and I kept wondering if I’d be able to answer student questions, if I’d be overdressed (or underdressed), if I’d do a good job. The event went well, and I had some great conversations with prospective students. Still, in the back of my mind, insecurity loomed, evaluating everything I did. Continue reading
I caught myself examining the theology of Ed Sheeran songs the other day. Granted, I’m pretty sure he’s not writing songs with God in mind; he seems to say as much. Even so, some of his lyrics reflect imagery and ideas found in Christianity, and I like trying to figure out what he might believe based on what he sings (for instance, I’m pretty sure he’s not a Gnostic based on “Shape of You”). Continue reading