Change is in the air at Southeastern Seminary – and one of these changes involves my role and ministry focus at SEBTS. Effective January 1, 2013, I will assume the position of director of the L. Russ Bush Center for Faith and Culture.
The Bush Center, also often referred to as the “CFC”, is located in Patterson Hall and has been directed since its inception in 2006 by Dr. Bruce Little. Dr. Little has done an outstanding job, but wishes to focus more of his time and attention to the ministry opportunities he has in central and eastern Europe, and therefore requested that a new director be appointed for the Center. After considering and interviewing a number of candidates, Dr. Akin and I ultimately decided this opportunity would be an excellent fit for my own theological interests and areas of focus. Accepting this new position requires that I step away from my role as the Senior VP for Academic Administration and Dean of Faculty; and it is a switch I gladly make. God has been at work in my heart and life this year, and I see His leading in allowing me this new direction for ministry.
The mission statement of the CFC is stated thusly: “The intention of the L. Russ Bush Center for Faith and Culture is to engage culture as salt and light, bringing the Christian faith to bear upon all areas of the human experience in a spirit of Christian love and respect. It is dedicated to providing a responsible voice in the public square speaking Christianly both in content and in spirit to the issues and concerns facing contemporary culture. In addition, the Center is committed to supporting, encouraging and helping the community of faith in all aspects of its mission and ministry.”
Students, pastors, and laypeople need to know how best to integrate theology with all arenas of life. This is a crucial component to discipleship. How should I serve God in my vocation? How does a Christian engaged in genetics, geology, or biochemistry glorify God in his or her field? How does one “think Christianly” about these scientific fields of study? Similar questions are being asked by believers in the areas of law, politics, arts, film, business, and other culture-forming endeavors. What does a theology of nature, or of justice, or of beauty, or of history, look like?
Russ Bush was more than a professor to me during my student days at SEBTS. He was a mentor and a friend. I have mementos in my office of the time he, Matt (my son), and I went together to the top of Pike’s Peak. It is my desire to honor his memory and legacy. It is also my desire to fulfill the ministry God has committed to my trust with integrity and with excellence. I covet your prayers that I would be faithful to this important task.