Mysterious Ways

Last March we spent a week in Philadelphia being assessed by World Harvest Mission, who oversees the Prague church planting team we’ll be joining soon. Along with us, there was another married couple and three single girls. One of these was Jessica, a Furman student who had already done a lot of mission work and had a heart for the Muslim world. She was applying for an internship in Europe as part of discerning what her call to missions might look like. We stayed in the same house all week, got to hang out a lot, and really liked her. She was into John Piper and The Office. Clearly we became friends.

This month Jessica was doing her pre-field training in Colorado. Sunday morning she was traveling with several other missionaries when they were in a terrible wreck. Jessica, another young woman, and an eighteen-month-old child were killed. The baby’s parents are still in the hospital; the mom is in critical condition.

We are crushed. And of course it doesn’t make sense to us. How does it help the Kingdom to take a girl who would have given the rest of her life to missions? Why save the parents and take the child? God does not give us any of these answers, at least not now. He does not have to.

There is one thing we do know: it won’t always be like this. “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” Come, Lord Jesus.

Desiring God Conference

Each year Desiring God hosts a conference for pastors, and this year is a special one. The theme is “The Pastor as Father and Son,” and pastors were encouraged to bring their fathers and/or sons (at a deeply discounted rate!). John Piper lost his dad early last year, and he will be the subject of Piper’s biographical message. D. A. Carson, another conference speaker, has a memoir of his father coming out later this month.

The conference looks great, and they are posting the audio within about an hour of each talk. This will be good stuff to download and enjoy, especially for men.

Theopedia

We all know Wikipedia, our generation’s Britannica and a relatively productive timewaster. (Did you know that at the 1980 Republican convention Ronald Reagan came close to nominating former President Gerald Ford as his vice-presidential running mate? I didn’t. Until last week.) But you may not know about another great resource: Theopedia.

Built on the same model as Wikipedia, Theopedia is “an encyclopedia of biblical Christianity.” What is hyper-Calvinism? Who is Wayne Grudem? What do we mean when we say the Bible is inerrant? You can get a quick answer to these kinds of questions on Theopedia. It’s in progress, and some articles are better than others, but I haven’t seen anything out-and-out wrong in the articles I’ve looked at. When you find yourself needing a 30,000-foot overview of something theological, this is a good bookmark to have.

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