Friday, December 31, 2010

The Ten Best Things About 2010

It's time for every blog on the planet to do top ten lists. Well, we're a blog, so here's my top ten list (not listed in order of importance!):

10. Sinclair Ferguson's Podcast.
Earlier on in my journey into Reformed Christianity, I thought there wasn't anything better than hearing R.C. Sproul's teaching. Then, once I got really into preaching, it was John Piper. However, as I've moved along and become more familiar with the real Presbyterian form of Reformed Christianity, I've begun much more to appreciate the preaching of Sinclair Ferguson, who became my favorite preacher of 2010.

9. Discovering Sherlock Holmes.
Since I cannot live on a diet of strictly theological reading, I discovered the novels of Dennis Lehane, whose work I simply adore. But a little after discovering Lehane's books, I started reading the real detective himself, Sherlock Holmes. Thanks to Project Gutenberg, I have every single Sherlock Holmes novel and short story that Doyle ever wrote, all in one convenient file on my Kindle. Whenever I feel like I've pushed my brain too far theologically, I go to the old standby. He is logical, exciting, jaded, and addicted to the poppy seed, so he's still a man with feet of clay. I absolutely adore Holmes and don't know what I'll do when I actually finish reading all of his adventures. Nothing will substitute, I'm afraid.

8. Reading The Marrow of Modern Divinity.
Although I am not even a fourth of the way through reading The Marrow, I do believe that this wonderful, amazing, rich book will be the greatest thing I have found this year. It doesn't get #1 though, because I haven't finished it yet.

7. Calvinist Hip-Hop.
There are few things as thrilling as finding out that there are literally rappers who do songs about penal substitutionary atonement and openly defend the doctrine of election in their music. Discovering the Pollen Posse (as they are called in some circles; think of tulips) was a terrific thrill and made 2010 a year to be reckoned with.

6. The Birth of My Daughter, Penelope.
She's just the sweetest thing I've ever seen. At least since the last child we had. Also, the fact that we were able to have this child at home and not in a hospital is a matter for praise, because it's the first time we've ever been able to actually pull it off.

5. Love/Hate Relationship With Social Media.
Social media is honestly one of the best and the worst things about 2010. On the one hand, I get to write on this blog, which is a thrill, and I am now friends with Charles Hodge on Facebook. On the other, I am quite convinced that my digital connectedness is affecting the way I think. If you don't believe me, read Nicholas Carr's book The Shallows. It's a terrifying book to read as a Christian, because you become aware of just how short the internet makes our attention spans.

4. Ditching piracy.
This was painfully bittersweet. I still don't like to talk about it.

3. Losing my interest in music.
See #4. When you can't get tons of music for free anymore, it has a way of helping you make idols out of other things instead.

2. The Amazon Kindle.
Don't believe me? Just look at my entry from December 29th. Everything I read, practically, is on the Kindle. Couple that with the constant free books from Reformation Trust, and you've got an invaluable addition to my reading repertoire.

1. Finding our church home at Heartland PCA.
This is easily #1. Easily. Something about discovering you're not the only Reformed person in the state of Kansas has a way of at once humbling you and at the same time strengthening you in unspeakable ways. Having opportunities to teach and contribute in a real Reformed church setting has been far more transformative for my family than I ever could have imagined. We got to join the church, see our children baptized, and enjoy the fellowship of fellow Reformed believers. I don't know what I'd do without the friends I have made. Arryn and I glorify God constantly for bringing us to Heartland, and especially for bringing me under the discipleship and care of Pastor Rick Franks, who is a constant encouragement to me in many respects.


  1. I hope your daughter never grows up and sees the things you placed in importance above her birth ;)

  2. I thought the same thing Jacob! Edit the post before she learns to read!


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