All posts filed under: Writing

Does Dr. Strange Villainize the Truth? | Movie Review

I’m a Marvel fanboy, through and through. Like many thirty-somethings I enjoy watching my childhood reading material come to life on the big screen, and I love sharing the stories with my kids. We’re a Marvel family for sure. Now that I’ve established my loyalty to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, er… multiverse?… let me say, in the interest of full disclosure, that I’m not a Dr. Strange fan. I never liked the comics or the characters. You might say that my Evangelical roots left me disinterested in a superhero fighting evil with, well, evil — magic spells and goat-head hands. Who needs strange stuff like that when there’s Spider-Man? Really. Ok, so now you have a handle on my presuppositions. Oh, wait. There’s one more vital piece of information that you need to know: I’m a Lutheran pastor. Though I grew up as a fundie, I’ve repented of my pietistic tendencies and find peace and joy living in the feeedom of the Gospel. There you go, now you have all the pieces at play in this post, …

An Advent for Religious Liberty | Book Review

Ray Keating’s third Pastor Stephen Grant Novel, An Advent for Religious Liberty continues to bring to life this heroic pastor. What pastor doesn’t want to be like Pr. Grant? What parishioner doesn’t want him as his shepherd?! At only 157 pages this book is just about half the length of book two, Root of All Evil? (read my thoughts on that book here). I don’t know if it was originally released during Advent, but I wish I would’ve read it during Advent. As a novella it packs an intriguing story into a quick read, perfect for the busy-ness that comes with December! Mayor-elect Adam Pritchett’s over the top personality is Trumpian (for lack of a better word), which enabled me to buy into the rapid and overt attack on religious freedom in the story. How it’s stopped, well, that’s on par with how I’ve come to expect Pr. Stephen Grant to handle things – like a boss. A great teaser story between Root of All Evil? and The River, which I can’t wait to read. Perfect for the faithful who want a seasonal book consumable …

The Messengers: Discovered | Book Review

On the back cover of Lisa M. Clark’s debut thriller, The Messengers: Discovered, published by Concordia Publishing House, there is a word printed in small type: futuristic. It’s there under the ISBN barcode. A genre classification. But just how futuristic is this adventure? Clark tells an exciting and believable story centered on the Word of God. The setting, though a dystopian future, isn’t hard to imagine. In light of the rise of ungodliness in America, it’s easy to see the world Simon Clay lives in as one we may well inhabit in the not-too-distant future. Discovered delivers God’s life-forming truth, demonstrating it’s transformative power and the significance it has on those who believe. In fact, it does it with such precision and skill that it begs the question: why doesn’t CPH publish fiction regularly?! With each turn of the page, readers, especially young readers (Clark’s primary audience) are built up in the understanding that there is no darkness that can overcome the light of Christ (John 1:5). A much needed message for all believers today! I bought this book …