Interview with

Founder & Teacher, desiringGod.org

In the last podcast you mentioned living now in the middle of nowhere Tennessee. And this is the first time we’ve recorded Ask Pastor John from different states. You are in Tennessee for the next 14 months. So give us a quick personal update, because you recently moved. And maybe give us some updates us on projects you hope to work on in the next year.

Tony, we drove down to Tennessee with a one-third full Penske 16 foot truck. I think I overestimated. We didn’t bring furniture. We just brought books and stuff we would need for a year because we were renting a furnished house from one of Noel’s cousins. And bless their heart, Marshal Segal and Stephan Green drove the truck for us and we drove our car and so we got here and moved in to this place and are getting our—even as we record right now—still getting our offices in order. Talitha is going to have a little place in her room, because she is going to do college courses on line while we are here for this year. Even though she is a senior in high school she is going to be taking college course that count for dual enrollment. Noel is getting her little study set up in this master bedroom here so that she can work on her biography of Esther Nelson who is a missionary nobody has ever written about and she hopes to get that basically done, I think, this year. And for me I hope to work on Ask Pastor John.

[HAHA—thank you!]

Actually there is a few other things. We are going to be working on a new creative Bible teaching vision through desiring God that we hope to roll out in a few months or so that we will tell the people more about later. And then there are at least three book projects and a fourth that I have not decided on yet. One is called Five Points Toward a Deeper Experience of Grace to help believers know what has hap-pened to them so that they can enjoy God more and love him and feel a sweet thankfulness that comes when you know what he really did for you and can help you, then, spill over in gospel telling for others. So it is a book about reformed soteriology at its most basic level. And my desire is that people would see that these things are for our joy and for our steadiness and they are not mainly about arguing or debating. They are right at the heart of what gives us peace and sweet communion with the Lord because of the majesty of his salvation in our lives. So that is number one.

Number two is called A Godward Heart: Treasuring the God Who Loves You, 50 Meditations for your Joy. It is a collection of 50 short readings. And the vision behind this is that we have published A God-ward Life I and A Godward Life II and, let’s see, Pierced by the Word and Life is a Vapor. All of those are collections of short readings that I have written over the years and our aim is to try to get that num-ber up to 365 so that we can then publish a series of volumes in which we have a reading for every day of the year. So this is a step in that direction.

And then, the third one is caught... it is a new Swan’s book, volume VI in The Swans are Not Silent called Seeing Beauty and Saying Beautifully: The Power of Poetic Effort in the work of George Herbert, George Whitefield and C. S. Lewis which is kind of a surprising combination, I think. But I think I have seen something in the ... particularly in George Whitefield. George Whitefield is the surprising member, I think, in that trilogy, because he was an evangelist and a preacher rather than a poet. And yet when you see how he preached there is a way that he had his own peculiar poetic effort. And I will try to define that, that I think is a kind of unity to these three heroes of mine that I hope will be very helpful to peo-ple.

But here is the overall goal for this year away, Tony. I do plan to move back to Minneapolis some time in summer of 2014 and the reason for getting away is, number one, to make as much freedom for Jason Meyer, my replacement in the pastoral role at Bethlehem and for God to give me discernment for the next chapter of my life. If God gives me 10 years, that is how long my dad was really lucid. I remember hearing my dad preach when he was 77. That is 10 years older than I am. And it was a powerful sermon. I have got a video of my dad preaching at 77. I said, “Boy, if I could preach like that at 77 I will be so thankful.” So if God... I mean I don’t assume... I think we should always plan for life, but never presume upon life. And so I am going to plan for it and the question is: What is the configuration of teaching at Bethlehem college and seminary and producing audio and video and written content for Desiring God and speaking to conferences and ministering to missionaries and encouraging pastors, all those things that are possible now. Lord, show me. So I would ask people if they listen to this, just join me in prayer that this year would be a year of great illumination so that the last chapter could, perhaps, in God’s mer-cy, be the most fruitful of all.

Thank you Pastor John. And thank you for listening to this podcast—we do appreciate your pray-ers for Pastor John for this next year. And if you have questions, please email those to us at ask-pastorjohn AT desiringgod DOT org. At desiringgod DOT org you will find thousands of other free resources from John Piper. … I’m your host, Tony Reinke. Thanks for listening.