Wednesday, 23 December 2009

About me

I have been the minister of Welwyn Evangelical Church in Hertfordshire for eleven years. I am married to Hilary and we have two boys, Nathaniel aged 5 and Thomas, 4. I also teach some of the Systematic Theology at London Theological Seminary and am on the committee of the John Owen Centre.

I rejoice in being a Christian and in being a minister of the gospel. I love the formulation of the Christian faith usually denoted 'Calvinist', which I believe the truest and best expression of Christianity, and adhere to the doctrines set out in the great Reformed Confessions of Faith , especially the Baptist Confession 1689.

Why start a blog?

Being something of a technophobe I am surprising no-one more than myself. Recently my wife suggested that it might be a good thing for me to do. I have said things more than once at church to our young people and others about using the internet , Facebook etc., carefully and Christianly. Perhaps, therefore, I should put my money where my mouth is.

So after chatting with friends and one or two enquiries I am launching into the (for me) uncharted waters of blogging.

For myself I hope it will be a good discipline which may at the same time be of use to others. I read a lot; writing is probably the best way of turning raw grain into bread; or, at least, flour.

But what will I say? Will I avoid the well -publicised dangers of narcissism? Will I waste valuable time? Will I become addicted? Will it - O, worst fate of all - be superfluous?

Time will tell...

Why 'a Harp from the Willows'?

I am a Welshman (a harp being our national instrument) living in the English village of Welwyn (which is 'old' English for willows). So it seemed to be a good fit.

More piously, 'a harp from the willows' is a symbol of faith and hope derived from Psalm 137:2. There, the people of Israel in Babylon hang their harps on the willows in sadness at their exile. To 'take the harp from the willows' is to begin to sing again. It expresses hope, faith and joy in expectation of God's deliverance. I would like to think of my blog being a promoter of faith - my own and that of others.

Then again, if people accuse me of 'harping on...' about something - I've got there before them.