The painting that drives me
Welcome to my new blog—I’m really glad you’re here.
For ten years I’ve wanted to do this. I’ve written a daily morning devotional for more than a decade, sending it to subscribers (now more than 18,000) and posting it on our website, but it’s not really a blog. I’ve always wanted to do a real blog, commenting more personally on current events and cultural issues in spiritual perspective. With our new website design, I can now do just that. This is very exciting for me—I hope it will be interesting and relevant for you as well.
Here’s the reason why I’m so motivated to interact with cultural issues and faith questions. It has to do with a painting I can see as I write these words. My father fought in World War II, stationed on an island in the South Pacific. He was one of 300 men assigned to that island—only 17 survived. One of them was an artist. He made 17 oil paintings of that island and gave one to each survivor.
My Dad died when I was in college, but my Mom kept his painting until she died a year ago September. Now it is mine, hanging on the wall over my computer monitor. Here’s why it is so special to me: my Dad never went to church after that war. He had been a Methodist Sunday school teacher, so devoted to the church that friends thought he might go into vocational ministry.
But the horrors he encountered on that island shook his faith so severely that he never recovered spiritually.
I am driven to discuss the kinds of faith issues which haunted my Dad and still bother me today. I am also fascinated by the intersection of cultural issues and biblical truth. What does God think about the tensions between Israel, Turkey and Iran? Why is the war in Afghanistan now the longest conflict in our nation’s history? What does Scripture say about such wars? Does the Bible have a position on gay marriage? On immigration reform or the environment?
My daily devotional, called GodIssues Today, focuses on spiritual encouragement for each morning. My blogs will be different—more personal, perhaps more controversial on occasion, more tied to faith questions and cultural issues. I’m excited about exploring some tough questions with you, and looking forward to conversation together through your comments and my replies. Welcome!