I was recently interviewed by Ken Myers of the Mars Hill Audio Journal about my book Gratitude in Life’s Trenches: How to Experience the Good Life Even When Everything is Going Wrong. You can listen to the interview here.
I want to say a few words about The Mars Hill Audio Journal. For over a decade, long before the era of podcasts, I benefited from being a subscriber to this audio journal, which features interviews with authors on topics as diverse as culture, technology, literature, history, film, art, and theology. Through the grace of God, this audio journal helped deliver me from the temptation to be wise in my own eyes, and it helped buffer me against my natural tendency towards intellectual tribalism. Here’s why: after years of overhearing Ken Myers have conversations with some of the greatest minds throughout the world, I realized that I am not really as smart as I like to think, that I am really just beginning my education, and that on any question you can possibly imagine, there is an entire discourse involving good people who have devoted their careers to studying that question. The first step to becoming informed on any topic is to find out what people who have written books on that subject have to say. You may not have time to read their books, but you can listen to these authors talk about what they’ve written. Being able to stand on the shoulders of giants like this is humbling, an example of the principle found throughout the Book of Proverbs that learning and education really can lead to greater humility, open-mindedness, and receptivity to wisdom. So thank you Ken Myers for the ministry of this audio journal.
For more information about the journal and how to subscribe, just visit their website at https://marshillaudio.org/. Once you subscribe, you can download their app to have all their content delivered straight to your phone.
Back to my recent appearance on the journal. Ken and I talked about the difference between using “positive thinking” to simply plaster over the pain and messiness of life vs. leaning into our trials with courageous vulnerability and gratitude. We talked about how reframing our sufferings in a spiritual way involves engaging with our pain rather than trying to assert control through a stoicism that says, “nothing can ever hurt me.” We talked about the way social media and machine-mediated-friendships enable us to customize our relationships and public image, and thus eliminate the vulnerability that is inherent to real-world interactions.
During our interview, Ken had some great insights I hadn’t thought of, which reminded me of why I enjoy the Mars Hill Audio Journal so much.