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Shadows of Divine Things

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Location: Texas, United States

This site is devoted to theological and philosophical investigations of the spiritual meanings of life, current events, music, spiritual growth, nature, and learning to be attuned to listening to the 'language of God.' The name of this blog comes from one of Jonathan Edwards's journals which he called 'Shadows of Divine Things,' and later renamed 'Images of Divine Things.' As a Christian I am continously on a spiritual journey to grow more into the image of Christ, to understand what it means to be crucified with Christ. To seek the truths of the Christian Faith is of upmost importance, and to know that any truths that are found outside of Christianity are present there because they ultimately point to God. I have an M.A. in theology and apologetics and I completed one year of graduate studies in Philosophy at Marquette University.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

A Bit of My Background (Part 1)

On my blog, as of late, I have been grumbling about my plight to find a good church home for me and my wife. On a more personal note, I wanted to post a brief article on my background and what factors and issues have led me to my current stream of thinking. I do this hopefully to shed light on why, perhaps, it has been difficult for my wife and me to find a church home (despite the fact that there are not too many “well rounded” or solid churches in our area).

I was born in West Texas, and was raised in a small West Texas town in the middle of nowhere (literally). To give you some perspective on this, within a 200 mile radius the only town that was larger than my own was Fort Worth (and Dallas). In this small town, I was raised in a Southern Baptist Church (I actually spent the first 30 years of my life in the Southern Baptist denomination). However, this church was not just any typical Southern Baptist Church, this was the First Baptist Church in this town, and was, for the most part, quite fundamentalist. In fact, in High School, in the early eighties, I listened to music that was considered “the devil’s music” (i.e. Metallica, Judas Priest, Kiss, AC/DC, etc.) by certain people in our community and church. The church I grew up in stressed anything but meaningful theology (that I can recall anyway).

When I was twelve years old, after coming home from a very emotional church camp (with all the typical Baptist campfire tunes that are meant to get an emotional reaction out of you), I went “forward” (walk the isle as many call it) and made a “public profession faith.” I will save the details of this for another post (especially since David Piske and I have been conversing about these very issues lately in our usual “theological gatherings”). It was at this point that I “supposedly” became a Christian (once again I will post on this very issue a little later).

After graduating high school, I did not do the typical thing that my brother and sister had done; that was to leave our small town and go to a large university (they both attended Texas Tech University in Lubbock). No, I stayed in town and went to the local Southern Baptist University. After several years at this university, bored half out of mind, I stepped out of school for about a year in order to work and decide what I wanted to do with my already miserable existence (I say “miserable” due to my lack of discipline and the friends I was hanging out with and the things I was doing at the time - I'll spare you the details). After a year of being away from school, and through a long time friend, I decided to go back to finish my undergrad work. However, when I went back to this Southern Baptist School, I actually changed my major to Theatre (and added English Literature as a second major). This was the best decision I could have ever made because the theatre gave me the discipline I was lacking at that time in my life.

Around the same time I graduated from this Southern Baptist University, I had what I like to call my “traumatic” conversion experience; this was several events which ultimately “led me back” (for lack of better term) to Christianity. These events actually turned my whole life upside down and I became “on fire” for the Lord. I was witnessing, attending the Southern Baptist Church I grew up in, the whole nine yards, so to speak. It was actually through this “coming back” that led me to an interest in apologetics. While witnessing to my own dad (he lived in Houston at the time – my parents were divorced when I was about two years old in the late 60’s) who was, and still is, a member of Unity School of Christianity (a type of ‘mind science’ or New Age group). He pretty much chewed me up and down with regard to certain essential Christian doctrines.

After this experience, I realized that I was quite unprepared to “give a reason for the hope that is in me” (1 Peter 3:15). This experience also made me realize how scant my knowledge of Christian theology actually was at the time. Moreover, this experience ultimately led me to a deeper study of the Bible, theology, and with such a great interest in those things this ultimately led me to desire a seminary education. I will save that part of my journey for another post.

[To be continued . . .]

3 Comments:

Blogger Chris Tilling said...

Nice idea. I'm reading this with interest!

4:17 AM, February 13, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why the antipathy to emotion?

3:05 PM, February 13, 2006  
Blogger T.B. Vick said...

Anon,

no antipathy towards emotion per se, but I do have an antipathy toward mindless emotion.

4:04 PM, February 13, 2006  

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