Research is an adventure into the unknown. As such, it’s risky business. What happens when things go wrong? Sometimes a project you’ve been working on for long hours turns out to lead nowhere. You’ve poured your energies into a big plan, only to find it doesn’t work. You may even suffer the blow of being pre-empted in publishing something that was your ‘baby’ – your big idea to show the world. At such times it’s easy for scary questions to enter our minds: Am I a waste of time? Am I not good enough to be an academic?
The European Reformation of the 16th century clarified the distinction between Christianity and the Church. The believer’s primary allegiance, claimed the Protestants, was to Jesus Christ, and church congregations were an essential expression of this rather than providing salvation itself. At this time came a renewed emphasis on Christ’s lordship over every area of life: all kinds of work were to be seen as vocations to pursue in service of Christ the coming King.
One of the things we are aiming to do through Faith-in-Scholarship is to direct Christian postgraduates (and others) to helpful resources and initiatives. We’re planning to ‘spotlight’ a few of these over the coming months.
First up is C-A-N-: the Christian Academic Network.
Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”
I’m trying to be a serious academic, but sometimes it feels that considering how my faith impacts my discipline is merely an interesting sideline to my work. It’s a subject to be confined to my Christian postgrad group and occasional books read on the sly, rather than a unifying principle in my work.
What do you think of when you hear the word “ecology”?
The discipline of ecology may be unique among the sciences in that its name has become strongly associated with a political agenda . Indeed, “ecological” has connotations of “sustainable” and “environmentally-friendly”. What we call “green” translates in many languages as “ecological”, evoking one of the dominant ethical movements of our time.
It has been said that a specialist is one who knows more and more about less and less … until he knows everything about nothing!
A few weeks ago, we saw that redemption is the way in which God, in the person of Jesus, stepped into his creation to gain the victory over the punishment for and consequences of the fall. However, at present we still live in the ‘in-between’, knowing that we are forgiven now, but that the full revelation of God’s kingdom is yet to come. We are taught to pray ‘your kingdom come’. But how do we live in the light of this coming kingdom?