At the ouset we do wish to ask your forgiveness for my not feeling up to being able to personally answer everyone who has written Apprising Ministries lately. Please know that Issues relating to health remain a concern for me and they are still slowing me considerably. Thankfully, at the same time, there does seem to be some improvement along that front; but I’m afraid that I can only do so much right now.

What I will say below is loosely adapted from answering a few letters I have received, and so, it seems best to just quickly share a couple of things here, which might contribute to some clarification in the Lord as touching upon Internet ministry. For those who’ve been with AM a while you’ll know that this kind of ministry to which I am called one, which is quite easily misunderstood, and unfortunately, also has the effect of sharply dividing people concerning me.

Basically there are the relative few who really like what I do, and this would be opposed to the many, who see me as some kind of an enemy. I have no real control over that; it goes with the turf, and as much as I try to live in peace with eveyone, it just doesn’t always happen. So at this point, I’d like to address a common fallacy way too often promoted all across the blogosphere as concerning alleged “anger” in the writings of some of us involved with online discernment ministry.

Please understand that here I can only speak for myself, but I can assure you that what is done, on my part anyway, is not done in personal anger. Truly, it’s really quite the opposite. In fact, it’s actually not too unlike what those of us who’ve coached football would teach our players, which is even documented in the film Remember The Titans. When people become angry they are taken out of their game, so to speak, and that is never a good place for anyone to be.

In carrying this analogy a little further, God often has me involved on the “playing field” of ideas much as a football defense uses a middle linebacker. Unlike many in online discernment ministry I happen to a pastor-teacher; and as such, it’s also a part of my job at times to play tough and hard, as it were, but always striving to do so within “the rules.” The fact is, this type of work the Lord has me doing right now is simply not for everyone.

Men and women, you may believe me when I tell you that God deals deeply with those of us who do this kind labor in the Lord long before we ever write anything publicly. And many of the more well known ministries in this still developing field of online apologetics and discernment do know each other pretty well. The Master also gives us a pretty thick skin so we don’t end up taking the mounting attacks personally.

For if we didn’t cast all our anxiety upon our Great Shepherd (see-1 Peter 5:7), leaving it then for God to protect us, I suppose we’d all have nervous breakdowns long before we’d ever get very far. I say all that basically to say this; I remain committed to following Biblical principles, as does my church leadership, our independent board of directors, and so do those to whom I have also voluntarily made myself accountable. What’s commonly misunderstood is that Apprising Ministries is not “my” ministry; but rather, from it’s inception AM has been an outreach of my local church.

So in closing, please rest assured that I never, ever, forget 1 Corinthians 15:10, one of my life verses. The Lord has long, long ago deeply impressed upon me that, but for His grace, I would be those I differ with, and/or, I am trying to reach. And therefore, it never really does become a personal issue for me; but instead, as a soldier, I simply attempt to accomplish the mission my Commander gives me to do to the best of my humble abilities (see-2 Timothy 2:3).

Quite frankly, I always make every attempt to live by an old adage: All glory, for anything good that I may do, goes completely to God; and all of the mistakes, those are entirely mine. When our church voted to begin Apprising Ministries four years ago we had a simple little local apologetics and discernment work in mind. However, without our asking, the Lord would then give us the original AM website and proceed to take our idea in a whole other direction we would have never foreseen.

Rather than people being angry that there are a growing number of online discernment ministries, I suggest instead, we ought to begin asking God to forgive us that He has even had to send missionaries and apologists among those who would claim Christ. However, it’s not like Jesus didn’t warn us – For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? (1 Peter 4:17).

And may the Lord prepare His Body for the very rough spiritual waters, which lay dead ahead.