What kept Abraham from being crippled by regret over Ishmael, whose progeny would plunge two lineages into millenia of violent conflict? What kept Joseph from the bitter regret of losing the prime of his life to wasted jail time, betrayal, and abandonment? What kept David from despairing in regret over Bathsheba – not only losing their child, but the perpetual consequence of the sword in his own household? What kept Peter from the regretful shame of denying his Lord and Master three times? And what steadied Paul when he could have easily plunged into guilt and regret over his former life as persecuting Saul?
What will keep you from a life crippled by regret? What will bring you hope?
There’s only one medicine that can cure the cancer of regret.”Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:13). Continue reading
Tom Oden – Methodist minister and promoter of paleo-orthodoxy – outlines what drove him to publish Care of Souls in the Classic Tradition. He began by noting how often 19th century handbooks on pastoral care/theology referenced the ancients on this issue. He collected the most prominent volumes on pastoral theology from various denominational backgrounds, and then counted the number of times they referenced “the MVPs” of Christian care – stalwarts such as Augustine, Baxter, Luther, and Calvin. Here were his results:Oden comments, “This clearly establishes the point that at the turn of the century [ed – 20th] the classical tradition was alive and well, recalled, and considered important to the practice of pastoral care.”
But Oden then went on, and collected what he and others considered the most popular monographs on pastoral theology, that had the broadest consensus for use and excellence. When he searched those modern volumes for the classical tradition of shepherding, he was disappointed: Continue reading