Of Mushrooms and Ministry


By Dr. Greg Trull, Dean of Ministries, Professor of Biblical Studies

Step by step, we ascended up the trail out of Hell’s Canyon. Camp lay just ahead, and we were nearly “home” when we discovered a delectable surprise. Warm days and newly melted snow had given way to a bed of wild Morel mushrooms. After dropping our packs at camp, we hurried back to harvest our find. That night we gorged on fire-roasted steaks and butter-sautéed mushrooms. We were the portrait of happy campers!

While Morels bring joy to any mushroom hunter, many forest fungi bring only danger. The same are as that produce delicious Truffles and Chanterelles may also grow Destroying Angels and Death Caps. Oh that they wore their revealing names in the woods! Instead, the toxic grow readily among the tasty.

As Christians, we face a challenge similar to the mushroom hunter. Our paths are lined with a host of choices, all with a promising look. Ideas and causes sprout up in Christian circles. How do we acquire the taste for the full range of God’s blessing while recognizing and refusing the empty and dangerous? This issue of Dedicated offers insights to sharpen our spiritual discernment.

Anne Jeffers challenges us to indulge in resurrection truth throughout the year, not just at Easter dinner. The resurrection of Christ changes all of history and all of eternity. Such a transforming, hope-filling reality ought to serve as a daily delight for our souls. Leroy Goertzen invites us to extend our tables and embrace change. The comfort of familiarity dulls our desire to reach out. Yet the joys of stretching to connect to new people and fresh challenges reward those willing to set more plates for guests.

Kent Kersey provides helpful insight for identifying the healthy and the hurtful in his review of Rob Bell’s hot and controversial book, Love Wins. Many have applauded Bell’s conclusion that God’s love will ultimately overlook all human failure and allow everyone to find heaven. Kent adeptly analyzes the logic and biblical proof in Bell’s claims, and offers a needed corrective.

We’re glad you’ve come to our table. We hope this issue feeds your soul.


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