I find myself working through the new normals of a major transition this spring.
In May 2003 as I finished my master of divinity degree at Calvin Seminary, Hennie and I started talking about the potential of me pursuing a doctorate. In 2005, I started a second and more research-focused master degree, timidly wading into the academic waters again to see if we were up to the more rigorous demands of a doctorate. Then in 2009, we said yes and I immersed myself in the Doctor of Theology program at Wycliffe College. I defended my thesis earlier this year and formally graduated last month, concluding a 13 year conversation and constant reality in our home. Continue reading
Though the threads of racial reconciliation are intricately woven throughout the fabric of the Christian gospel, Christian churches in North America have frequently been marred by efforts to separate and tear apart the unity of God’s people along racial lines. Among other aspects, I am often troubled by the lack of awareness that persists regarding both the biblical vision for reconciliation and the complicity of Caucasian Christians in the history of racism within the North American context. I am thankful, therefore, to see two related efforts unfolding within my denomination (CRCNA) that seek to contextualize our history in relationship to a broader North American story between European settlers and Indigenous persons. This path of reconciliation is one we need to walk together. Continue reading
Around our house, we joke about how the cold gets into my bones. My kids throw around the “old man” label when I complain about it being cold. To compensate, I develop seasonal habits of indulging in hot chocolate and consuming lots of different soups, especially homemade chili, to try to convince my bones they’ll be okay. I have oversized blankets strategically placed on a couple different couches, extra comforters on the bed, and thick socks in ready supply. Sometimes, however, it seems that no matter what I do, the cold gets into my bones. Continue reading