As many of you know, I am a pastor in LA who has been blogging for over 7 years now. My main areas of interest have to do with evangelism and discipleship, in particular reaching out to the next generations and training others to do this. My blog, “How To Be A Christian Without Being A Jerk!” has been a mixture of apologetics, relational evangelism, and discipleship training, with personal lifestyle/ current event type posts interspersed. The overall vibe has been challenging us to look again at what we all “know to be true” from a different angle.
I have been using personal anecdotes and humor (yes, much self-deprecation, of course), following the filter of “sharing the compassion of Jesus with everyone; sharing the gospel with those who are receptive.” All of this in, as much as possible, a “no-being-a-jerk” zone.
I have taken a few months off from blogging now, and am ready to begin again. This time however, I am trying an experiment. Here is what it looks like.
My intention has always been working on a “No Jerk” series for Christians, and not stopping at “How To Be A Christian Without Being A Jerk!” Recently, I am receiving encouragement from writer colleagues to work on another book in the series, specifically on fathers raising sons. They are challenging me to get out the wisdom I have been sharing with them and others over the last several years, and applying it to a book which deals with dads training up their sons.
The result is the book (working title), “Hey Dad! 10 Ways to Make Sure Your Son Won’t Grow Up To Be A Jerk!” Through learning from mentors, and my own modeling, sharing life, and teaching my boys about being a “man” (I am not grunting as I typed that), and then working with other fathers and sons over the last three decades of ministry, I come from a strong base of parenting sons. If you have shared life with us, you know this to be true.
In the last several months, I have begun writing the book, but I need help. I need some structure and expectations to keep me moving, and so combining blogging with the writing makes sense. This will help me make progress in being more organized about the whole project, while sharing content and soliciting feedback along the way.
All of this will be written from a filter of the Christian worldview, along the same lines as my “How To Be…Jerk!” work. This certainly makes sense, because the biblical concept of discipleship is the best model out there for dads raising sons. Certainly, as with my other writing, I am paying close attention to make sure that non-Christians will discover this book to be helpful, again, if receptive.
My wife, Nancy and I have three adult children, Kristina, 22, and Gregory and David, twins of 19. I plan on writing a father/ daughter book in this same “Jerk” series, but I am starting with sons because that’s where I can be of most service right now.
In the blog, together we will explore these 10 topics (or “Ways”) of “jerk prevention”:
- Invest lots of time in him
- Treat him as unique; not special
- Be affectionate
- Help him face his fears
- Be an honorable husband
- Be his spiritual mentor
- Have solid friendships
- Model loyalty with integrity
- Help him retire your flaws
- Model how to protect and serve
I intend to publish entries three times a week, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. You will be able to access them through my Twitter and Facebook feeds, along with my website www.danahanson.org.