I’m thrilled to announce my very first complete publication, Gospel-Centered Discipleship, is now out!
The book is a mix of gospel theology, personal story, and discipleship practice…and I think it works! My wife has been making fun of me all week because I’ve been sitting around the house reading my own book (making noises while I read). Weird, I know, but there really is something to stepping back from a staggered, creative process and taking in the whole for the very first time. Tactile book in hand, I’m grateful to have the privilege of writing and working with the friendly, accommodating, editorial and marketing staff at Crossway Books.
The gospel frees us to be authentic ourselves in Jesus (a theme I discuss in chapter 3). Upon conversion, Jesus does not replace us with an otherworldly version of ourselves. Instead, he renews our existing self, which is why all Christians should not look the same. Jesus didn’t die to make hyper-religious versions of our former selves. He wakes us up from the dead, so to speak, so that we can truly live the way he’s wired us. The gospel injects our personality and gifting with steroid-like grace. The more we take it in, the more our true selves are liberated to live a whole life wholly under the reign of Jesus Christ our Lord.
This means that things like writing, music-making, art, business, mothering, crafting, sports, teaching, technology, and product creation can take on a more meaningful role in our discipleship. It does not mean we should abandon the things we love to do. As disciples, we don’t have to make excuses for the things we love; rather, we get to run them through grace in the service of God. We learn how to worship with them not without them. If it is true that Jesus is Lord of all creation, and that he has made us for a very public obedience and devotion in every sphere of life, then disciples should be among some of the most vibrant, creative, excelling, happy people in the world. The gospel releases us from religious cages and rebellious ruin in order to a whole life wholly by faith in Jesus Christ as Lord.
I hope this book, in some way, contributes to this kind of robust, integrated way of following Jesus.
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