You’ve seen these memes about being an introvert. They pop up on Pinterest, Facebook, and Twitter and are often produced by Buzzfeed. “21 Things That Will Never Make Sense to Introverts” “53 Pictures Only Introverts Can Truly Appreciate” “21 Tweets That Will Make the Introvert Laugh Out Loud” These little […]

Stewarding your introversion


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When I turned 16, I had been homeschooled my entire life. I was finished with my high school work, and preparing to go to college in the fall. I bought a car with cash that I’d saved myself; I’d already worked at several different jobs. I was ambitious and creative, […]

5 things I wish I could say to every 16-year-old ...



Note: The following piece was originally published at The Gospel Coalition on April 9 under a different title.   God saved me through hospitality. To be more precise, God used hospitality crucially in his pursuit of my soul. After years of a debate between my agnosticism and my longing for […]

God saved me through hospitality


I was rooting around in some old files and found quite a lot of old poems, most of them written between 2009 and 2011.  If I date my conversion to early 2010, then these poems literally surround the days that I stumbled and fought my way back into the faith […]

Poems from my youth



Hello friends! I’m excited to show you the cover of my book, which will be out September 4. That’s still six months away, but it’s exciting to me to be able to share this with you.  

Seeing Green cover finished!


(Editor’s note: This is part 2 of a blog post in which I share a letter I wrote to Tilly in early 2011, in response to her question about eternal punishment. For the sake of length, I’ve broken the letter into two parts. Part 1, in which I make a biblical […]

How I Deal with Eternal Punishment (Justin’s Letter to ...



On December 29, 2010, the woman who later became my wife emailed me a question. We’d known each other about a year, and (unknown to us) we were a couple of months away from dating. But she was a new convert, I was a pastoral intern, so I must’ve seemed […]

Does Hell Last Forever? Part 1 (Justin’s Letter to Tilly)


My two-year-old gave herself a haircut yesterday. The first thing she said when I came in the room and found her with the scissors in her hands was, “It was too brown.” Then, feeling around for justification when she saw my wide open mouth, she changed that to, “It—it—it was […]

Mamas: Lay down your life or have it taken from ...



When I was a little girl, I was absolutely content in my family’s material position. We lived in a variety of homes—city and country, rented and owned, renovated and rough. There were seasons when my parents were squeezed by the worry of not knowing where the ends would meet. But […]

Contentment in the face of plenty


Quick report on my week of no screens. It was a short break. It wasn’t a full break either—I answered some time-sensitive emails and texts, I did some writing on a laptop, and I found myself checking Facebook more than once without even knowing that I had typed the word […]

3 things the screen fast did (and didn’t do) for ...