This weekend I am setting out on the biggest project I’ve ever attempted, a project that will take me around the world and through the ages. In a series of journeys that will unfold over the next couple of years, I will travel to the four corners of the earth to complete research for a forthcoming book. I can’t say too much about the book at the moment except that I hope it will provide a unique and compelling take on the history of the Christian faith. We can talk more about that later.
To do justice to this book, I need to see and experience the rich history of Christianity. For this reason I plan to travel to significant locations, explore important buildings, and search for key historical artifacts. I will interview experts and comb museums and tour sites. All the while I will attempt to learn how the Christian faith came to be, how it grew and spread through the centuries, and how its past helps us better understand its present and guard its future.
This journey will lead me to the Middle East where the Christian faith was founded and to Europe where so many of its main events unfolded. It will lead me through Asian nations reached only through the tireless labors of long-suffering missionaries, to South America where the gospel has made great inroads, and to sub-Saharan African nations that, though they have a short Christian past, may have a long and brilliant Christian future. And, of course, it will lead me around America, where so much recent history has taken place.
Wherever I go I will take my camera and notebook to document the journey in a kind of travel journal that I’ll share right here at my blog. This will be a new form of writing for me, but I hope it will allow you to join me from afar through the magic of the internet. However, I also expect to actually encounter some of you in my travels—to meet you, to shake your hand, to worship in your church, and to hear your story. If my journey leads me nearby, let’s be sure to get a coffee together.
I am calling this project EPIC because only EPIC seems to capture the scope of all I’ll see and experience. More significantly, only EPIC seems sufficient to describe the scope of the story I hope to hear and tell, for it is my conviction that history is not a purposeless unfolding of events, but a purposeful narrative displaying the glory of God. It is his story, his EPIC. And I am so excited to search for it, find it, and tell it.
The journey begins this weekend as I board a plane to head far from home. Where am I going first? Stay tuned and you’ll find out. What will I see there? I don’t know, exactly, but I’m sure it’s going to be EPIC. Visit next week and I’ll do my best to display and describe it.
As I’ve told people about this, they’ve asked a few questions. Here are some of the common ones:
- Is there a full list of the places you are going? I’m not yet at liberty to say, at least in part because the list will change as the project evolves. I’ll announce each trip as I begin it. Also, if you know of a key Christian event or artifact in either New Zealand or Australia, I’m all ears.
- Who is funding this? Sponsors, some of whom you’ll meet along the way, and the book’s eventual publisher.
- Who are you traveling with? Sometimes friends, sometimes family, sometimes solo.
- When will be book be published? Hopefully a year or so after I complete the travel.
(Want to guess where I’m going first? Jump over to Facebook and make your guess.)