National Library Week – Let’s Celebrate – and Pray!

The American Library Association (ALA) has marked this week as National Library Week and we plan to join in the celebration! I have some special ideas planned to showcase the PR Seminary library and the Letis collection on which I have been working. Earlier this year I joined the Association of Christian Librarians (ACL), and they have a fine tradition of commemorating this week as well. I will give you the note that was sent out to the members last week:

Dear ACL Members:

No doubt you are already aware of the fact that April 9-13 is National Library Week here in the United States.  In the past, we in the Association of Christian Librarians have used this week of library emphasis as our special call to prayer for our libraries and library-focused issues, particularly within our Association.

In keeping with that ACL tradition, each day throughout this coming week, beginning on Monday, April 9, I will issue a call to prayer for a certain aspect of our Association.  In addition, each day’s prayer points will be listed on the ACL Web site.

I invite you to join me for this concerted effort to pray together for the challenges we face as librarians and as ACL members.  Although what I will mention in my daily messages will be somewhat limited, I invite you to pray each day for other related requests that you know of personally, or have a special interest in.


Perhaps we do not think of libraries and librarians as needing prayer, but I can assure you that you ought not think this way in the least! As Christian, we are called to lay ALL our needs before the Lord in prayer, and that surely includes this need as well. As one of those who serves the Lord and His kingdom in this way, we do need your prayers for this cause and for our labors too, because of the unique challenges and the need for wisdom in dealing with these challenges, and because of our own sins and weaknesses in serving. So, as we join together in celebrating National Library Week this week, remember to pray for your Seminary library and librarian (and for other such Christian libraries throughout the country and world), that we would fulfill our calling to serve the Lord and His church through our unique role and the resources we provide.

Published in: on April 9, 2012 at 12:38 PM  Leave a Comment  

“Between Two Worlds”: Justin Taylor on Blogging & Books

Between Two Worlds: An Interview With Justin Taylor by Justin Taylor | Reformed Theology Articles at

This month’s Tabletalk includes an interview with Justin Taylor, a long-time and well-known Reformed blogger who also works for Crossway Publishers. In the interview he talks about what led him into blogging as well as the significance of book publishing in this modern age. For today, this interview will be our Tabletalk feature, and I believe you will find it interesting and profitable (and you may kindly ignore his reference to the “virtual world” being a gift of God’s “common grace” – I am sure he really means “providence”.). Below are some parts of it; you will find the rest of the interview at the Ligonier link above.

Tabletalk: What led you to start a blog?

Justin Taylor: One of my favorite parts of elementary school was “show and tell.” I’ve always enjoyed sharing with others those things that I find fascinating. Eight years ago, I would regularly send a small group of friends items of interest on the Internet, and blogging seemed like a natural extension of what I was already doing, except for a wider audience. My assumption was that many Christians are already on the web every day. My goal is simply to put before them a steady stream of edifying links, excerpts, and notices that will help us all grow in godliness for God’s glory.

TT: How do you choose what topics to blog about?

JT: My two main criteria are those things that (1) are edifying and (2) are interesting or exciting to me. It’s easy to lose sight of the incredible (and humbling) fact that our generation has more access to gospel-centered resources than any generation in the history of the church. This makes the vocation of blogging easy at one level, given the plethora of spiritually healthy materials we have at our fingertips. Because the goal of the Christian life is to see and savor “the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Cor. 4:6), most of my blog posts have some connection with seeing and experiencing God, His grace, and His gospel.

…TT: From your perspective working with Crossway, what contribution does Christian publishing have to make to the church?

JT: One of my favorite quotes is from the acclaimed novelist (and OPC churchman) Larry Woiwode: “There is rugged terrain ahead for those who are constitutionally incapable of referring to the paths marked out by wise and spirit-filled cartographers over the centuries.” This is true not only across the centuries but also in our contemporary time. In God’s providence, he has provided publishers who preserve the insights of teachers of God’s Word. So, for example, my children will likely never have the opportunity to sit in Dr. Sproul’s living room to hear him tell a children’s story or sit in the pews at Saint Andrew’s. But through the printed word, the next generation — and even our children’s children — will be able to “hear” this wonderful teaching. If publishers like Crossway are doing their job correctly, then Christian publishing can be a complement to and a resource for Christ’s church in order to build up His body and edify His bride.

TT: What impact do you believe that e-readers will have on thee future of book publishing?

JT: The world of publishing is changing, and things will continue to change — but no one knows exactly what the future will look like or what the ramifications will be. It certainly affects every aspect of publishing when you have a “book” that doesn’t need to be printed, shipped, or kept in stock. The possibilities are endless: Will some publishers sell individual chapters at a very cheap rate? Will someone figure out a seamless way to integrate audio books and e-books? Will libraries let users “check out” an e-book? Will writers stop using footnotes? Will independent bookstores eventually cease to exist?

Marshall McLuhan’s observation that “the medium is the message” was obviously an overstatement, but there’s no doubt that digital media will continue to impact the way in which content is both conceived and processed. We will always have with us two extremes: those who refuse to recognize the opportunities that this new technology creates and those who are so aggressive in adopting and advocating for the latest creation that they cannot see what we might unintentionally lose in the process. I think that the path of wisdom falls somewhere in the middle.

Published in: on April 9, 2012 at 12:13 PM  Leave a Comment