Well, here you have it – my first official post on Off the Wire. As Matt mentioned, I used to write for diesel.blog, but Matt and I have kicked around the idea of collaborative blogging for a while. He graciously asked me to consider joining Off the Wire as a contributing editor, which I took as a great privilege. Allow me to briefly introduce myself.
My name is Jason VanDorsten; I am Atlanta-born but raised in rural Kentucky. I accepted Christ as Savior the summer before I entered high school and quickly became steeped in small-town emotional/moralistic fundamentalism. Well-intentioned as I might have been, Christianity at the time was little more than a behavioral code for me.
By the time I left my small town to attend the University of Louisville, it was becoming clear that there was a disconnect between what I was saying and doing. Though I identified myself as “Christian,” it was little more than a self-appointed title and no real bearing on the rest of my life. Frustrated with that growing tension, I began to question many of the things I had simply taken for granted before – the existence of God, the truth of the Bible, the claims of Christ, etc.
During that process over the next couple of years, I found that I could not escape the gravity of Jesus’ claims about himself. If He is who He claimed to be, I reasoned, my response to that simply cannot be a nominal one. About the time God was brining me to that conclusion, I was invited to join a Campus Crusade Bible study – which happened to be lead by one Matthew Wireman.
At the end of our senior year, Matt and I headed off to Argentina, where I stayed for nearly 3 years. God used my first year there to demonstrate His grace and might by stripping away much of my early foolishness and easy believism. He used the rest of my time there to bring to surface three great loves in my life – a love for a woman who is now my wife, a love for the doctrinal solidity I find in Reformed theology, and a love for the Church.
I currently live in Reston, VA with my wife and two great kids, Caleb & Elizabeth. I am a pastoral intern at a large non-denominational church in the D.C. area that is struggling to articulate its identity and direction after 30 years. Over the last five years that I have been on staff here, my duties have been varied, but involve providing directorial oversight for our young adult ministries, graphic design, communication, website upkeep, along with various counseling and pastoral duties as well. I am currently in the SBTS online Master’s program studying toward a MA in Biblical Counseling.
I love the Church, even in all its brokenness, and have a deep desire to see the bride and body of Christ become clean and vibrant before Him. I am excited to see where the Lord will take us in all of this.