Just a short announcement that I will take some time off from writing to recharge. Articles will resume on 10 October 2020. I am planning on spending some time camping in my hammock, hitting our local trails with the fam, and overall just enjoying the cooler weather here in New Mexico. Thanks for reading, and see you again soon!
One of our missionaries preached a few weeks ago on Isaiah 55. In his sermon, he noted that King Ahaz, during whose reign Isaiah was prophesying, trusted Assyria instead of God to deliver Judah, contrary to the call of the passage to come to God instead. God calls us to trust him no matter our circumstance, so I was wondering how we apply this today, when many of us have refrigerators full of food and healthy retirement accounts. How do we trust God in times of plenty?Read more
Solar eclipses are fascinating! The moon is at just the right place that it can completely cover the body of the sun while keeping the sun’s corona visible. Every time we approach a solar eclipse, we hear the warning: Do not look into the sun, you will go blind! What we know intuitively when the sun is fully exposed, we need to be reminded of when it is not: it is powerful! So powerful that I cannot look at it for longer than a moment without being blinded for minutes. So bright that I cannot hope to make out any detail in the sun by looking at it. The same is true for some passages of Scripture: They shine so brightly that it seems like I will burn out my eyes before I am able to see them in all their splendor.Read more
Based on Darrell’s recommendation on the 100th episode of the Just Thinking Podcast, I bought a copy of “Up from Slavery”, Booker T. Washington’s autobiography. I just finished the book and want to share a few things that stood out to me.Read more
My wife and I recently went for a hike in our beautiful mountains. We enjoy being out in nature. Walking in the cool of the day amidst pine trees, breathing the fresh air, taking in the stunning views, chatting about what we love most and least about each other—there isn’t much that can compete. Although this particular hike ended up being a bit more challenging than we expected, it still fulfilled its purpose, at least in part: Give her and me a chance to talk about life, marriage, and parenting. Our hikes have become a major component of how I lead our family.Read more
If you are 35 or older, you probably remember the iconic sound a dial-up modem made when it connected to the internet. I remember it well. That sound was my gateway to the world for years; at least when I was able to pay my Mom for the monthly charges. It occupied the only phone line we had, so voice calls were impossible, meaning every time I connected to the internet, I could be kicked off when someone needed to make a call or I had been hogging the line for too long (whatever that meant). When our phone provider offered a monthly “flat rate” at the blazing speed of 1 Mbps, while at the same time keeping the phone line unoccupied, for $25 a month, I was blown away. I persuaded my Mom to do it, we did, I paid for it, and it was awesome: A constant connection to the rest of the world.
No worries, not a lot has changed except for the address. It is now appliedtheology.net instead of zerodeviation.net. Given the title of the blog, it was only fitting. Please update your bookmarks and RSS readers (more detail below); if you subscribe via email, you don’t have to do anything!Read more
Imagine strolling through Mainz, capital of the Electorate of Mainz, Holy Roman Empire. The year is 1455. On your walk, you come across a book. It is unlike any other book you have ever seen. It shows no trace of handwriting, just even, perfect, blocky letters. You recognize it as a Bible and examine the price tag: 30 florins. For a clerk, that’s three years’ wages! But it’s still much cheaper than a manuscript Bible. You peek past the display at the apparatus in the back of the store. Strange. As you walk off, you think to yourself: “At this pace, everyone will have one of those soon. What a crazy time to be alive.”Read more
Thinking back from my early days as a Christian to today, I remember the great emphasis on freedom. Becoming a Christian coincided with my moving to the United States, which was founded on liberty and justice for all. Combine “American” with “Christian” and you get people apparently possessing a dizzying amount of self-determination. While I do appreciate being a citizen of this country, I must remember that, even as an American Christian, I am still a slave.Read more
My morning routine includes C.H. Spurgeon’s “Faith’s Checkbook”, a daily devotional about God’s promises to his people we can “take to the bank like a check”, to summarize Spurgeon’s words in the preface. I was especially encouraged this week by one of these devotionals.Read more