Posted in Current Events Encouragements and Exhortations

3 Lessons From Abraham Piper

The other day, as I was looking for a John Piper quote, I came across the NY Times article A Pastor’s Son Becomes a Critic of Religion on TikTok. The article speaks of the rising popularity of Abraham Piper, son of John Piper. Abraham was originally excommunicated from Bethlehem Baptist, but then returned to the church four years later. Throughout the years I have seen some of his social media posts, and I have often found his attitude to be cynical and (honestly) concerning. So, now Abraham is rising in fame as an “Exvangelical.” His platform: criticizing evangelicals and the…

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Posted in Africa Christian Missions Culture Culture Shock Encouragements and Exhortations

“Culturally Competent” Yet Still on the Outside

This last week, Dave’s drafting team was working in our village. Watching them work and talk, I was reminded how I have come to consider them to be some of my closest friends. We are united in the Lord, in the work, and in our love for one another. During our shared meal, this group of guys started telling some of their traditional folktales, full of wild arm movements, animal imitations, and silly faces. They were cracking up to the point of crying, sometimes having a hard time getting the words out, and slapping each other on the back for…

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Posted in Christian Missions Encouragements and Exhortations

How NOT to Choose a Career

When I was a kid, many people told me I could pursue any career I wanted. I went through a number of desired careers including (but not limited to): comedian, doctor, and insurance salesman. In high school, a career counselor looked me in the eye and said: “Ignore all that stuff. You have limits, you can’t just do anything you want. You need to figure out what you are capable of doing and pursue that. But if you can find something that you love to do, you will never work a day in your life.” I like this advice for…

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Posted in Africa Current Events Encouragements and Exhortations

When does a protest become village-burning?

People have asked us for our take on the racial tensions in the US and although I haven’t spent much time following it, this week I watched a video of people vandalizing a Target. The images I saw were strikingly similar to the violence we constantly hear about on the English-speaking side of Cameroon. I think the burning, pillaging, and violence we find here could shed some light on the conflict currently taking place in the States. The Anglophone Crisis: A Little History Relations between the former British colonies and the former French colonies have been tense since the independence…

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Posted in Bible Translation Encouragements and Exhortations

4 Steps to Pursue Diversity in Bible Interpretation

One day, near the beginning of his public ministry, Jesus was approached by a Roman centurion. Jesus had already been doing some shocking things; just a few verses before he touched a man with leprosy, healing him. So, maybe his disciples were growing accustomed to his “different” methods. Maybe his offer to heal the Roman’s servant would not have seemed so strange. They may have been surprised to hear that the centurion believed that Jesus could heal from a distance, but I suspect what surprised them the most was when Jesus replied to him: “Truly I tell you, I have…

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Posted in Bible Translation Christian Missions Encouragements and Exhortations

A Case for Diversity in Bible Interpretation

I would like to make a claim at the outset of this post: proper biblical interpretation requires diversity. Specifically, we need to study the Bible with people different from us in order to best understand the meaning of the text. This claim is not unique to me and when I have heard it in the past, I have brushed it aside. My reasons for rejecting such a conclusion were: 1) as a believer, I am indwelt by the Holy Spirit who guides me into all truth (John 16:13), and 2) I believe in the perspicuity (or clarity) of Scripture. By…

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Posted in Africa Christian Missions Encouragements and Exhortations

The Balance Between Drive and Submission

There truly is a delicate balance between raw determination (I-will-do-this-or-die-trying) and submission to the limits that God has put on his creatures. I feel this on a daily basis and assume that I am not the only one, although I don’t know that all personality types struggle with this tension. I see this battle in one of my children very acutely.   All of our children are learning to type this summer. One child in particular sits down the computer and expects to type like her parents within the first half an hour. So far, she has spent each day…

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Posted in Christian Missions Encouragements and Exhortations Third Culture Kid

The Role of Unbelieving MKs

I have a friend who grew up on the mission field and even though both she and her brother grew up as MKs (missionary kids) their lives today look very different. Currently, she is a missionary while her brother totters between being called an atheist or an agnostic. Apparently, this scenario is not uncommon: some MKs live passionately for the Lord and his work and others want nothing to do with Christianity. While there are certainly plenty of exceptions, it seems often the children of missionaries fall to one extreme or the other. If then there are a great number…

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Posted in Christian Missions Encouragements and Exhortations

3 Ways to Apply Grace to Missionaries

Stacey and I are reading a new parenting book called Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family, by Paul David Tripp. This particular parenting book is not super practical. Tripp does not lay down step-by-step instructions for how to deal with each and every situation. Instead, he guides Christian parents with Gospel principles, and shows how those principles should affect the way that we parent. The second chapter in the book is entitled ‘Grace’ and hits at the heart of a major problem with my Christianity. Here is a specific quote that I think explains the point…

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Posted in Current Events Encouragements and Exhortations

How is God Blessing Your Quarantine?

Who would have ever thought that our whole lives would be upended by an invisible-spiky-egg-looking-thingy?! This has been quite a month! And I think you would be absolutely shocked at what things look like here in the village. Why? Well, mostly because they look pretty much the same as they did before the pandemic. People are not social distancing, I have not seen much of a change in hygiene, and no one is staying at home. For those of you in Western cultures, or at least in cities, this might be shocking. It might seem irresponsible and inconsiderate, even foolish….

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