Gospel Links for Gospel Culture (7/12)
When pastors notice that their church members have been absent for a while and they check up on them, they’re puzzled to discover that there isn’t a particular reason why these members have been more absent than present. The attenders are not mad, and they’ve not had a bad experience; they just see church attendance much as someone might see the choice between Firehouse Subs or Red Robin. It’s whatever they’re in the mood for that Sunday, or during that season of life.
I will never forget early on in our marriage, before we had any kids, my husband got a phone call from a buddy of his from college. He said, “Hey, I wanted to let you know that my parents are getting a divorce. I thought, Your parents are getting a divorce? They’ve been married for 25 years, and now they are calling it quits? I have no idea what caused their divorce, but I would guess that somewhere along the way their home became kid-centered vs. gospel-centered.
Do you consider yourself a theologian? I assume not. I certainly didn’t for many years.
Looking back, however, it’s clear I didn’t understand what theology was about. I basically figured it was a holy hobby for Christian geeks. Sure, I was vaguely thankful for scholars who stroked their chins and wrote Bible commentaries, but my working assumption was that the real action in the Christian life was with the heart and the hands.
When I was a sophomore or junior in college, however, I came across a verse in the Book of Psalms that I’d never noticed before: “Great are the works of the LORD, studied by all who delight in them” (Ps. 111:2).
Facts & Trends spoke with Ben Mandrell, newly-elected president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources, about his perspective on leadership, communication, and legacy as he begins leading one of the world’s largest Christian publishers.