I have thought and prayed about this for a long time, and I’ve discussed it some with Jarod over cigars. There are a few things that have influenced my decision:
- Family life: As I’ve mentioned a few times, we have a baby in our family now. He’s a little over 1 year old now and he’s our joyful, silly lovable little guy. Being a dad is truly one of the most special things I’ve ever had the blessing to experience, and I want to be able to prioritize it the way it deserves. Having this constant feeling of neglecting this podcast while I’m doing that is not ideal, in my opinion.
- Church life: Last year I joined the team at my church that was responsible for finding us a new pastor, and recently we just rejoiced as we voted him in. I also joined our preaching team, and we have developed (and continue to develop) a team teaching model that is intended to develop men as servant-leaders and to help us to continue pursuing obedience of the great commission to make disciples. As I’ve walked through all this, it’s become clear to me that my ministry work is not going to be primarily online, but it’s going to be right here, in my home city and church. If I do start another podcast down the line, it would be one that grows up out of this work, not one that is separate from it.
- My own heart: It’s been many years since I started this. Over that time I have seen an unfortunate number of men who I had once admired and even considered heroes of the faith grow in ways that I have found to be destructive to their own ministry – in some cases apostasizing but usually nothing quite so overt. More often, it’s been a product of the six-way fracturing of evangelicalism. (I had intended for Jarod and I to discuss that article on an episode but never got around to it. I highly recommend reading it.) Hardness of heart, anger, and fear seem to rule the hearts and words of many, and it’s gotten to the point that there is no addressing it as a person who is not actually able to speak to them with accountability as a goal. Arguing on the internet with men I barely know is not fruitful or Christ-honoring. And I don’t want to be ruled by my anger or my desire to win.
There is also the issue that running a podcast involves promotion and, in this age, requires involvement in various social media platforms. On the one hand, I’m sick of it. I’m tired of having to balance how to attract attention on Instagram versus running an engaging Twitter account alongside a Facebook that does the same thing but in a different way. It goes along with my concern about being able to stay more focused on the ministry where I’m actually at. And on the other hand, there are issues of temptation there as well. Twitter hosts overt pornography with no apology. Instagram might as well. As a man who has struggled with these things in the past, it is high time for me to move along, for the sake of all of the above: my heart, my family, and my ministry work. I will probably remove my accounts on those platforms within the week.
I am incredibly thankful to the many people who have been an encouragement in some way. To Jarod of course, who has participated in many ways and helped provide direction and wisdom, and with whom I am still grateful to be close friends. To those who have emailed or commented about ways they were blessed by something in a sermon or a discussion. To the many who joined us for interviews, with this little no-name podcast on the internet equivalent of a three-hundred watt radio station.
By now pretty much all the podcast links on this website are broken. I plan eventually to move the recordings to some place like archive.org where I can host them for free and fix all the links, but I don’t intend to rush about to get it done. I’ve got a lot on my plate, but I’ll get it set up eventually.
For now, I’ll leave you with the reminder I’ve given almost every Spurgeon Audio sign off, from Psalm 46: be still, and know that He is God. Our goal as believers is not to rage and scream and fear, but to demonstrate a great hope in the One who sets us free, in Christ and in His perfect and complete work. I will also leave you, finally, with this sermon I preached a few weeks ago at my church. I hope it is edifying, and I hope you will continue to seek the Lord in your own local church: