There is a great deal of ignorance within Christendom–not only of the more difficult doctrines, but of fundamental ones as well. Tradition wrapped in tradition have done their part in burying truth that much deeper from spirits yearning for it.
This ignorance and misunderstanding can be found in teachings on music, marriage, personal preference, church polity, worship, the end times, so much more. This ignorance and misunderstanding can be found in our seminaries, our churches, our schools, our literature, and even on this blog, probably more often than I care to admit or even think about.
A few years ago, I first wanted to write a book. My good friend Jonathan and I were going to exhibit our exegetical ninjitsu on subjects such as angels, the spirit world, Calvinism, and others we thought we were experts on.
Time moves on, but ambition, it seems remains. This time, it is my good friend Glen–who by the power of the Internet I have never met in person for he lives well over 1,000 miles North-East of myself–who will be along for the ride.
The goal is the same–to author a book which we feel there is a need for. The idea is different, for instead of a few specific topics, we want an accessible, open introduction to Christianity (along with two other projects which I’m not going to disclose at this time). Beginning with a clear & concise presentation of the Gospel followed by essentials needed to begin growing in the faith, it will be a handbook for young Christians who are intimidated by thousand-page systematic theologies or even the Bible itself.
And we’re not sure how well it will work, but we’re going to author the book in an online (password protected) wiki environment, so that we both can write and contribute to any part of the book(s) at any time while a revision history is kept to see our progress or rescue past revisions that turn out to be preferred. Plus, it seems a lot more accessible than Word’s cumbersome change tracking features!
We have no idea whether any publisher would accept our work, and we can easily enough fall back to Cafepress publishing, but we want this book to be as accessible as possible, and Cafepress works best for niche sitse that get a lot of traffic already, not sites relying on the book for getting noticed.
Ideally, I’d like to see the book appear at Wal-mart on the circle rack we have back by lay-a-way for the assorted religious and devotional books. People are always looking at those things, and it would be nice to get some sound material set aside that myriad assortment of mostly nonsense (“holy diets”? sure…).
The website itself would feature a message board for “we hate you” or “we love you” or “what about?” feedback, and whatever else readers come up with. We also have talked about an audio program of some kind, though collaborating on it would be difficult as long as Glen is stuck on dial-up. There would also be site-only content such as Q&A type articles and other material.
Needless to say, we are both excited about the idea, and we both admittedly have no idea what we are doing. (A book? I have trouble reading one, let alone writing one!) But we are confident that this is a needed thing and thus will be a Good Thing, and we are trusting in the Lord’s strength and comfort in us for the duration of the project. After all, we’ll undoubtedly face some obstacles.
We’re both in our early twenties, and we’re fairly certain there are some Grumpy Old Men in the Church who do not want to be told that their traditions are “whack” by a couple of young upstarts. So we rest in the advice given to Timothy, to let no one despise our youth.
Plus, neither of us are “credentialed.” We haven’t attended forty-seven years of seminary (or whatever the standard is nowadays to be considered an expert), nor do we have any fancy abbreviations for after our names. I do have an associates degree of theology, but I admit it means nothing to me. In other words, we do not feel we need the approval of men or a piece of paper to do what God has told us to do in His Word–to teach and to preach the whole counsel of God, no matter how much we or others may dislike what a passage says. It is our duty to conform to the word, not vice versa.
So, that being said, I look forward to it. I will definitely still be blogging here; this place isn’t going anywhere, but I may not be as present on my other website projects as I am now. They’ll survive. :)
This weekend will be pretty busy as well, so I’m not sure if I’ll be able to be online much at all, despite an inbox full of stuff I’d love to blog about but haven’t had a chance to yet. It’ll only pile up more through the weekend, but oh well; that’s the price I pay for procrastinating.
Friday, we’ll be at my Dad’s house (as far as I know; I haven’t heard back from him yet), and Saturday we’ll be in Indy to spend time with Alicia’s parents and to pick up airline tickets that we won. (Woohoo!) And Sunday afternoon we’ll be heading to my Mom’s house, and we’re supposed to go see Cars again (first time for Mom, anyway); if you haven’t seen it and if you don’t have a personal preference against family movies (if you do, I respect that), you will thoroughly enjoy it!
Monday I won’t be so busy, other than numerous writing projects. And my wife is more and more embracing the idea of a professional graphic design website (’bout time, Sweetie!), having already made mockups and plans for the whole website that she wants me to put together for her. I have no idea how to integrate a shopping cart into a website for purchasing stock images, however. I’m not sure what the learning curve is on something like that,so it should be interesting!