I’m behind on my blog reading… again. I don’t feel bad about being behind. Blog reading is not required, and it is sometimes detrimental. But I don’t like seeing a whole heap of posts in my reader. But, on the positive side, that means there’s stuff for me to peruse and enjoy. Below are a few I recommend to you.
How Can I Tell If I’m Called to Pastoral Ministry. Kevin DeYoung has a way of making things really plain and useful. I’d be happy if he were my pastor. I might even be able to help him with his Spartan idolatry–at least I’d pray for him. But here he gives us some very simple and sound questions when thinking about a call to ministry. Reading it brought to mind one of my favorite books on Christian ministry.
Al Mohler’s Best Books for Preachers 2012. Thanks Justin for linking to this. Thanks Al for compiling this. I’ve not read one of these books and Al has likely read them all in one sitting. I don’t know how I feel about possibly reading Charles Murray’s Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010. I’m compiling a few “whiteness studies” titles to read, and am currently enjoying Joan Walsh’s What’s the Matter with White People? Why We Long for a Golden Age that Never Was. I suspect she and Murray will have very different views of the last fifty years. So I feel inexorably drawn to Coming Apart… the way mice get drawn to cheese delicately placed atop a guillotine. After I’ve finished these, perhaps Nell Irvin Painter’s The History of White People.
How to Stop Church-Killing Gossip. Raise your hand if you think Justin Taylor is perhaps the most useful blogger alive. Here’s another very helpful abstract of thoughts from Kent Hughes, Dan Phillips, and Ray Ortlund. Good stuff to save friendships, heartache, churches, and reputations.
What’s the Point of Marriage? I enjoyed this reflection on the “why?” of marriage over at The Briefing. Jean Williams finds an upward, inward, and outward “why” by looking at Piper, Keller, and Ash books on marriage. I thought it was a helpful synthesis.
SBC President: We Need African Americans on the International Mission Field. Amen and amen! I appreciated this call to the great work of the Master and the articles brief look at some of the history of missions in the African American context. I don’t know how current or accurate this number is, but everything I find says there’s only 300 cross-cultural African American missionaries. That from millions of professing Christians. “Of IMB’s 4,900 missionaries, 27 are African American, 79 are Hispanic and 317 are Asian.” Much work to be done! I’m praying for a great army of African American workers to be sent into the harvest with others in our lifetime. In a couple weeks I hope to help announce an effort to fan the missions flame in the hearts of African American students!
Book Review: Center Church by Tim Keller. My brother Jonathan Leeman uses his considerable writing skills and insight to review Keller’s book on church ministry. Leeman manages to be both charitable and critical, offering differing “camps” something to take away from the book and something to leave.
Benedict, Dawkins, and the Fullness of Reason. I completely agree with Carl Trueman when he says the last sentence in this piece is worth the read! Don’t skip ahead. Read slowly. Wrestle with the philosophical arguments. Consider the nuances. And BAM!