In the last year or two I read through the Bible, Genesis to Revelation. Even though I’m relatively familiar with the Bible, having read it through a couple times earlier in my life, and having a Masters of Arts in Systematic Theology from Westminster Seminary, Philadelphia, I realized I needed a better grasp of the scope of redemptive history the entirety of God’s Word provides. And as Christian of the Reformed evangelical variety, I take seriously Sola Scriptura, so I need to know it better, the whole of it, and that most importantly I might know God better.
Born and raised a Catholic, the Bible was a nice table piece at our house, but we were never encouraged to read it. Yet what my Catholic upbringing did was to give me a respect for God’s Word, so that when I was reintroduced to it in College I never questioned its veracity. As a fallen human being, a sinner, I have been up and down in my walk with God over the years (as of this date, Good Friday, April 18, 2014, I am 53 years of age). A couple years ago, I think, for Lent I decided instead of trying to give something up I would do something positive, that being read the Bible and pray every day. I certainly haven’t kept that commitment perfectly, but I’m a persistent fellow and have kept at it as best I can.
In this last walk through the Scriptures there were so many times I was surprised or blown away or confused or had an insight I’d never had before, and just wanted to tell somebody. Often that was my wife or kids, but most often those thoughts stayed with me alone. At some point as I neared the end of my journey though the Word, I thought why not start a blog as that outlet to share my impressions or insights. Even if no one ever reads it, just the exercise of writing, which I love to do, will help me think through and grapple with whatever those impressions and insights are.
And since this is an About page, I guess I should say a little about me. I was born in an even year, 1960, so it’s easy to always know how old I am. As one can tell, my ancestors come from Italy, Sicily to be exact. All great grandparents and one grandparent were born there. In America they settled in Brooklyn and Boston before migrating to southern California. I went to college at Arizona state where my dorm room happened to be next to a couple of “born agains,” as my dad called them, and then me. These guys asked me a question: would I like to find out what the Bible had to say about who Jesus is. I did.
I was presented the gospel via The Bridge, they called it; God on one side of a chasm, me on the other, the cross the bridge to close the gap. Since I didn’t fancy going to hell and found out the Bible said we could actually know we have eternal life if we trust in Jesus’ death for us, I prayed “the sinners prayer.” It took me a bit to figure out that if this God was indeed real he deserved my all. So for the next three plus years in college I was heavily involved in a campus ministry, doing Bible study, prayer, evangelism, etc.
As my Christian journey progressed I began to feel stifled by the Christian culture I was born-again into. Somehow I came upon Francis Schaeffer’s The God Who is There and my worldview was opened up, way up. Instead of seeing Christianity as mostly about “spiritual” things and my relationship with Jesus, I began to see it much broader and more positive terms. I was challenged to think about all of reality as a Christian, from economics, to art, to politics and entertainment, history, law and philosophy, you name it. Eventually I found my way to the Reformed faith and Westminster Seminary where God just happened to have my future wife waiting for me! It was worth the three thousand mile trip.
I never saw myself as the minister/pastor type, and went to graduate school to potentially prepare me for the pursuit of a Ph.D. and a career in academia. Less than a year after having met Sarah and finally convincing her to dump her fiance for me (great story) we were married, August 15, 1987. Amazing how long ago and how not long ago that seems, just like yesterday. I’m grateful I decided to attend seminary because not only did God provide a mate, but three other human beings exist today because of it. A 22 year old daughter soon to be a graduate of Hillsdale College, an 18 year old aspiring golfer son soon to graduate from high school, and our “baby,” a 12 year old boy attending a classical Christian school in sixth grade.
After seminary I decided that at 28 another four or five years of schooling just wasn’t in the cards, and the total domination of academia by leftist liberals wasn’t an appealing environment either. We stayed in Pennsylvania where I worked in public relations for a small Christian liberal arts college, then after ten years in PA finally made it back to southern California, where I always thought I would live. But only three and a half years later we ended up moving to the not-so-Great Midwest, the Chicago area to be exact, to take a sales job I cold not turn down. We’ve been stuck here since 2000, and I say stuck because housing values still haven’t made much of a comeback and we can’t afford to flee this most dysfunctional of blue states. I often say, the only state more dysfunctional than the state I live in is the state I come from. One day, God willing, we’ll make it out of here to a red state.
My current occupation, for that last nine plus years is Vice President of Business Development for a small web development firm, selling website solutions to private schools. I also started a non-profit called the Liberty21 Institute, and contribute to a blog called The American Culture. But that’s enough About me. On to God’s great Word.