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The Ordinary Christian Podcast

The Ordinary Christian Podcast

By Craig Thompson
A podcast dedicated to real people like you, seeking to live out your Christian faith in the ordinary aspects of everyday life.
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Episode 44: Cultural Vertigo and Modern Morality with Carl Trueman
“I am a woman trapped in a man’s body.” That statement drove Carl Trueman to investigate what has happened in Western culture to create a situation where, “I am a woman trapped in a man’s body,” are words that makes sense in the same sentence. On this episode of the podcast, we discuss Dr. Trueman’s latest book, The Rise and Triumph of the Modern Self, which traces cultural transitions from Romanticism to the modern era to show how some unlikely philosophical partners have come together to create the cultural vertigo of the 21st Century. If you feel as though your head is spinning trying to understand our current cultural situation, Dr. Trueman’s wisdom might help you make sense of it all. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast.
March 3, 2021
Episode 43: Personal Evangelism with Tim Beougher
Have you ever struggled to share the gospel? The Great Commission is everyone’s job, but sometimes that job isn’t easy. Listen in as Dr. Tim Beougher shares some tips on personal evangelism. Simple steps like praying for your waitress or inviting a co-worker to church can open doors for you to share the gospel. In this episode you’ll also get tips on how to use gospel tracts and what kinds of tracts should be avoided. Current statistics say that it takes 86 church members to reach one person for Christ. However, over 11% of unchurched people say they would come to Christ if someone would only tell them how. 27% of the unchurched claim to be almost ready to accept Christ. The fields are white unto harvest. 63% of people are most willing to hear about church through a personal conversation with a family member and 56% would like to have that conversation with a friend or neighbor. Take the tips in this podcast and use them to change someone’s life. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast.
February 25, 2021
Episode 42: Evangelicals and the Environment with Tom Mullikin
Tom Mullikin is a senior environmental attorney, seasoned expert on global environmental policy, award winning documentarian and author, and senior military officer. Tom’s environmental work has taken him to every continent on earth, including multiple trips to the Arctic and Antarctica. Tom is also a devoted husband, father, and grandfather. I know you will learn much from Tom in this podcast, just as I have. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast.
February 17, 2021
Episode 41-- How Friendship is Stronger than Politics and Real Facts on COVID Vaccines with Dr. Russ Blackwelder
A Baptist and a Presbyterian walk into a bar…Not really, but this is a conversation between a left leaning Presbyterian doctor and a right leaning Baptist pastor. Russ Blackwelder is doctor and faculty member at the Medical University of South Carolina. Russ is also one of my college roommates and a long time friend. In this episode of the podcast, Russ and I discuss how we can disagree agreeably, love one another regardless of our politics, and try to pave a way for Democrats, Republicans, and everyone in between to get along a little bit better. Russ also gives some hard facts about COVID vaccines and answers some of your questions related to safety and efficacy. Russ speaks for himself and not MUSC in this podcast, but his wisdom is well worth your time. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast.
February 10, 2021
Episode 40: Aesthetics and the Christian Life with Matt Crawford
Aesthetics is the study or appreciation of beauty and beautiful things. As it relates to the Christian life, aesthetics is more than just pretty things, it is the appreciation of beauty in light of the Creator. An appropriate understanding and appreciation of beauty helps us to better worship and appreciate God. In this podcast we discuss the beauty of a sunset, of The Smashing Pumpkins, and of a perfectly executed barbell squat. Along the way we address apologetics, worship, grief, and C. S. Lewis. Matt also gives a great answer to the question, “Is beauty only in the eye of the beholder?” Join me on this journey and learn to appreciate beauty in a different lens. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast.
February 2, 2021
Episode 39: A Guide To Better Thinking
Slow thinking doesn’t fit well within the age of social media and immediate news. Slow thinking looks more like philosophy and conversation and less like soundbites and tweets. Slow thinking looks like books and newspapers, coffee shop conversations, and complicated intellectual wrestling matches. Slow thinking takes hard topics and resists the temptation to boil them down to their least common denominator and instead wrestles with the hard and complicated truths. Be quick to listen and slow to speak. The world will one day thank you for it. For more from Craig, subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
January 20, 2021
Episode 38: Seven Arrows with Donny Mathis
Dr. Donny Mathis wrote The Seven Arrows along with his pastor, Dr. Matt Rogers. On this episode of the podcast, I speak with Donny about how the Seven Arrows can help you to understand and apply the Bible. We also work to show how skipping straight to application can cause us to misunderstand and misapply God’s word. You can also find the Seven Arrows Study Bible here. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
January 5, 2021
Episode 37: Developing a Christian Worldview with Tony Beam pt. 2
What is a Christian worldview and why should you have one? Listen in as I speak with Dr. Tony Beam about the value of a Christian worldview and how you can develop one. Along the way we discuss discernment, politics, and wisdom as well as how you can live out your Christian worldview every day. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
December 7, 2020
Episode 36: Developing a Christian Worldview with Tony Beam
What is a Christian worldview and why should you have one? Listen in as I speak with Dr. Tony Beam about the value of a Christian worldview and how you can develop one. Along the way we discuss discernment, politics, and wisdom as well as how you can live out your Christian worldview every day. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
November 18, 2020
Episode 35: Sports Ministry With Aaron Shaw
Have you ever wondered how you might use sports as a ministry or mission opportunity. Today on the show, I speak with Aaron Shaw about how sports has enabled people engage in their own communities, internationally, and even within prison systems. If you are passionate about sports and how you might use them as a part of your ministry, this podcast is perfect for you. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
November 12, 2020
Episode 34: Blue-Collar Christianity
Do you ever feel like you are a blue-collar person stuck in a white-collar church? Or maybe, you’re a white-collar person trying to understand a blue-collar culture? I grew up in a blue-collar family. My dad was a mechanic for twenty years and my mom managed the high school cafeteria. My first jobs involved manual labor. I learned to work on cars, mow lawns, paint houses, and repair decks. I went off to college and got a white-collar education and then to seminary to further cement myself among the white-collar crowd of professors and pastors. In this episode, I offer a few tips on how to embrace blue-collar Christianity.
November 5, 2020
Episode 33: The Art of Rest with Adam Mabry
Do you struggle to make Sabbath rest a priority? Adam Mabry talks with me about his book The Art of Rest and how he had to nearly break-down to finally stop and rest. He also shares how his journey toward rest was and continues to be important for the people to whom he ministers. You will be blessed by this conversation with Adam. Please excuse some of the technical glitches along the way during this episode.  Quotable wisdom from Adam in this podcast: “We give to our kids the parable of our lives.”
October 28, 2020
Episode 32: Building Your Parenting Toolbox
I love tools. Home improvement projects are often just excuses for me to add to my tool collection. But tools are much more than collectors items, they have particular purpose. Good tools help us to accomplish tasks more effectively and efficiently. I have found tools helpful in all areas of my life where I have responsibility. Figuratively I have separate tool boxes as a pastor, as a parent, as a husband, and in other areas of my life. In this episode of the Ordinary Christian Podcast, I share ten tools that I have found to be indispensable in my parenting toolbox. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
October 15, 2020
Episode 31: Overcoming Your Fear of Public Prayer
Glossophobia is the fear of public speaking and 73% of our population is affected by it. At least that many people are afraid of praying in public as well. If you are among those who are terrified that you might get called on to pray in a small group or over a family dinner, this podcast is for you. On this episode of the Ordinary Christian Podcast you will hear 6 easy steps to help you overcome your fear of praying in public. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
October 6, 2020
Episode 30: A Conversation on Purity, Pop Music, and the Pornification of American Culture
On this episode of the Ordinary Christian Podcast, I sit down with two of the other pastors at Malvern Hill and discuss popular music, Netflix, and the degradation of pop culture. We talk music, dance, and movies. In the most surprising (and disappointing) twist of the podcast so far, Adam compares Boyz II Men to Florida-Georgia Line. Parents, pay attention to this podcast. You need to know what your kids are watching and listening to and, in some cases, you need to interfere with their entertainment choices. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
September 24, 2020
Episode 29–Murder, Grace, American Ninja Warrior, and Family Life With Sean Clayton
Sean Clayton is a former American Ninja Warrior competitor, a victim of violence, a U. S. Army veteran, an obstacle course competitor, husband, dad, and Christian. Join us today as Sean shares his story of pain and redemption. He also shares how his dad stuck by his side in his darkest days and how Christ freed him from his sin, anger, and pain. Along the way we get a couple of training tips, talk about half-caff coffee and the absolute value of hot Krispy Kreme donuts. Sean’s story is incredible. I hope you will listen in and share this episode with someone you know who might be in a dark place today. For more information about Sean you can look him up on Instagram. You can also see his home gym, The Woodshed, (which I try not to covet) here. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
September 21, 2020
Episode 28: A Godly Man Might Not Be What You Think
The primary marker of godly men is a commitment to godliness. Godly men may be office workers, crane operators, weight lifters, or duck hunters, but they don’t have to be any of those things. First and foremost, a godly man loves Jesus and takes responsibility for his family.
September 17, 2020
Episode 27–Ministry Burnout, Motherhood, and God’s Healing Grace With Ashley Turner
Ashley Turner spent seven years touring as a vocalist for the Christian group, Palisade. After her time in the music industry, she felt burned out and struggled to find her place in ministry. On this episode of the podcast, hear her story of God’s grace as she found her calling, not on the national stage, but in the ordinary aspects of ministry leading worship in her local church, loving her husband, raising her kids, and trying to make an impact in her own community. If you’d like to hear Ashley sing, you can find her here on Apple Music Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
September 2, 2020
Episode 26- Why The Local Church Matters with Luke Tolbert
When you consider your responsibility as a Christian to engage the world around you with the gospel, you may think about apologetics training or mission conferences. But, Luke Tolbert argues that the church is the most important ingredient in training Christians to engage the world with the gospel. The church is God’s institution to carry the gospel and fulfill the Great Commission. Local churches are the proving ground for missionaries and the sending agencies that can best support international efforts. We also discuss how a local church can minister to missionaries, cold beet soup, and SEC football (Luke is a Clemson fan, but he acknowledges the supremacy of the SEC). If you have ever questioned the importance of belonging to a local church, this podcast may help to answer some of your questions. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
August 26, 2020
Episode 25-Be Still And Know: A Conversation With Dr. Brian Gregor
Do you feel rushed, hurried, and unfulfilled? Brian Gregor argues that part of the reason may be our unwillingness to set apart special times for special things. Increasingly in American culture, time is not viewed as special, but rather as an “empty container…Everything is available all the time. At first this feels liberating–no need to wait–but it’s really enslaving because it gives no rest. No genuine leisure. No time or space to be still and know that God is God (Psalm 46:10).” On this Episode of the podcast, Dr. Gregor and I discuss how the answer to your lack of fulfillment may not be in doing more things, but in doing fewer things in more intentional ways. Along the way we discuss books, Canada, a California heat wave, and how a 19th century atheist may be a good guide for helping you to grow in your spiritual life. The book discussed on this episode of the podcast is The Cross Before Me. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
August 19, 2020
Episode 24: Marketplace Ministry With Jason Fletcher
Have you ever felt like your pastor was the only real minister in your church? Maybe you’ve doubted your ability to make a difference for the kingdom on your job or in the ordinary areas of your life. On this episode of the podcast, I chat with Jason Fletcher who left vocational ministry to manage his family business in North Carolina and volunteer at a new church plant. He shares how this move has opened doors for ministry. Along the way he also helps to dispel some myths about the pastorate and explains how challenging the spiritual struggle is for many of you working in the secular world. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
August 12, 2020
Episode 23- How Can I Be Sure of My Salvation?
Have you ever doubted your salvation? You aren’t alone. Many people struggle with assurance of their salvation. In today’s episode of the Ordinary Christian Podcast we will look at some good reasons why you should doubt your salvation. We will also consider some remedies against those doubts that sometimes plague God’s people. Here is a link to the sermon mentioned in this episode: Safety In Christ
July 31, 2020
Episode 22-From South Carolina to North Africa: A Conversation on the Missionary Process
Are missionaries just people who couldn't hack it in the United States? How would you transition from your 8-5 job in South Carolina to become an international missionary? How would you break the news to your spouse that you feel called to international missions? How in the world would you help your kids in that process? Today, my conversation with Walt covers all of these areas and more. Tune in to learn how others have transitioned to the international mission field and how you could too.
July 15, 2020
Episode 21: The Extraordinary Impact of Ordinary Ministry with Chris Hefner
On this episode of the Podcast, Dr. Chris Hefner and I discuss the importance of everyday ministry. We talk about Francis Schaeffer, Moses's staff, and floating axe heads. Along the way Chris helps us to see how the Elisha's ministry was important and valuable even though it is often overshadowed by Elijah. If you have ever felt like your ministry at work, at home, or among your peers didn't matter, this is the podcast for you! Here's a link to the book discussed on today's episode, No Little People
July 9, 2020
Episode 20: How Long Does It Take To Write A Sermon?
My kids wonder what exactly a pastor does. I assume that many of you wonder the same thing. I am often asked, “How long does it take to write a sermon?” In today’s podcast, I try to answer that question for any of you who may have been wondering.
July 1, 2020
Episode 19: Make Your Marriage Better Today
You can have a better marriage today with just a little effort. Stop putting it off until tomorrow. On this episode of the podcast, consider these 5 easy steps to improve your marriage now. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
June 25, 2020
Episode 18: Practical Discipleship for Dads–An Interview With D. J. Horton
D. J. Horton is senior pastor at The Church At The Mill in Spartanburg, SC. He is married to Laurel with six children. D. J. Helps us understand how to practice discipleship in our homes and how to make time to grow in Christ. Along the way we hear about a monster deer, the pursuit of turkeys, and practical tips for leading your kids toward Christ. You can learn more about D. J. at Living Worthy Ministries. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
June 17, 2020
Episode 17: Barbell Christianity
How can you grow as a Christian? After 25 years of strength training, I’ve learned that the recipe for growth is almost the same in every area of life. To get physically stronger you need 3 basic ingredients: 1. Nutrition 2. Time Under Tension 3. Rest. The same is true in your spiritual life. To grow as a Christian you need 1. Spiritual Nutrition 2. Time Under Tension 3. Sabbath Rest. Subscribe to The Ordinary Christian Podcast
June 10, 2020
Episode 16: Race Relations and The Church with Stephen Splawn Part 2
How should the white evangelical church help to heal the racial divide in our country? Here, I continue my conversation with Stephen Splawn from the SC Baptist Convention about race relations, country music, and sushi. We also address some more serious issues like stereotypes and injustice. Listen in to see how you can do your part to make a difference in your own church.
June 4, 2020
Episode 15: Race Relations and the Church with Stephen Splawn Part 1
How should the white evangelical church help to heal the racial divide in our country? Today, I speak with Stephen Splawn from the SC Baptist Convention about race relations, country music, and sushi. We also address some more serious issues like stereotypes and injustice. Listen in to see how you can do your part to make a difference in your own church.
May 27, 2020
Episode 14- Checklist For A Healthy Church
Everyone wants to be a part of a healthy church, but not everyone knows how to get there. There are tons of resources on what a healthy church is and what a healthy church should look like. But, if we were to boil all of that down to six necessary components, what would they be and what would that puzzle look like? Here's an ordinary guide to a healthy church.
May 20, 2020
Episode 13: An Ordinary Guide to Social Media
Does social media wear you out? Does it seem to be negative all the time? Maybe you agree with a friend who once told me, “Nothing on social media makes me like my friend more, but it does often make me like people less.” The Bible doesn’t mention social media, but it has a lot to say about how we use words. This episode of the Ordinary Christian Podcast will help you monitor your own social media posts.
May 13, 2020
Episode 12: Theological Fitness- An Interview With Aimee Byrd
Aimee Byrd is the author of five books including Theological Fitness: Why We Need A Fighting Faith. I asked Aimee to come on to the podcast today to help us understand how a "fighting faith" can sustain us during hard times. We also talk about some of her other writings and how rest can be active. If you would like to know more about Aimee, you can read her work here.
May 6, 2020
Episode 11: Security Is An Illusion and Other Lessons From The International Mission Field--An Interview With Zane Pratt
International missionaries approach the world through a unique lens. Zane Pratt, Vice President for Global Training with the International Mission Board discusses the status of the IMB today and how the church can support missions.  Dr. Pratt also helps us to understand how the pandemic is different in developing countries, how social distancing is a privilege for the wealthy, and what he sees as the next phase for global Christianity after Covid-19. If you are having trouble coping with the coronavirus pandemic, Dr. Pratt also shares some lessons from the international mission field that can help all of us to cope with difficult days.
April 28, 2020
Episode 10: Parenting After The Pandemic
What are your parenting plans after the pandemic? How will you apply the lessons learned from this slow down? Here are five steps you can take to utilize the lessons learned during this unique time. Prioritize discipleship at home. Prioritize church attendance. Reduce busyness. Keep academics in their place. Push extracurricular activities to the edges.
April 22, 2020
Episode 9: Why Online Worship Leaves You Wanting More
Are you participating in online or parking lot worship services right now? For many people, these experiences have been an important lifeline during the coronavirus crisis. However, most people acknowledge that these online or parking lot experiences leave them a bit dissatisfied. Why is that? On this episode of the Podcast we hear from Dr. Ricky Stark about why it is that online and parking lot services are helpful, but certainly do not serve as a replacement for more traditional (and biblical) forms of worship.
April 13, 2020
Episode 8: Learning to Slow Down
But, this time of forced sabbath should be teaching us all the value of rest and the importance of simple joys. There are lessons to learn. What are you doing to remember them?
April 8, 2020
Episode 7: Don’t Lead Your Children To Sin
Parents, read the Proverbs and take them to heart. Train up a child in the way that he or she should go. But, beware of how you may be leading your children astray. Beware, because for those who lead others astray, it would be better if they were drowned in the sea with a giant stone around their neck. Beware, because by leading your children to sin, you may lead them to hell. These are hard truths and they certainly are not fun, but life is real and eternity is forever, and you are the greatest hope your children have of learning about Jesus.
March 31, 2020
Episode 6: Being The Church During Hard Days
As COVID-19 continues to spread across the world, church buildings are shuttered. But, in hard days, the church is still the church. Here are 8 ways you can continue being the church, even in social isolation.
March 24, 2020
Episode 5: Some Suggested Reading for Your Social Distancing
Some of you are going to have extra time on your hands over the next several weeks. It might be a good time to consider some reading. Many of you who listen this podcast don’t enjoy reading as much as I do, so I thought I could help you by suggesting some books I’ve enjoyed or found useful. I limited this to non-fiction only.
March 17, 2020
Episode 4: How Should Christians Care for the Sick?
COVID 19 is the disease of the day right now. Hopefully in a few months or years, COVID 19 will be a distant memory. But, regardless of what happens with COVID 19, we will always have sickness among us, and people who are sick need our ministry. In Matthew 25:36, Jesus said, “I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.”
March 10, 2020
Episode 3: Get The Most Out of Your Church
Have you ever felt disconnected from your church? Do you struggle to feel like you fit in? Try these steps to help you get the most out of your church. Attend Regularly Join a LifeGroup Be a Friend Prepare for Worship Remember that community is messy...and so are you. Invest in others and invite them to attend worship with you. Show up early and stay late.
March 2, 2020
Episode 2: Have A Better Quiet Time
Do you struggle to have regular and meaningful devotions. Are you ever tempted to believe that everyone else seems to have this figured out except you? Today on Episode 2 of the Ordinary Christian Podcast, I hope to help you improve your devotional life and take steps to grow in your Christian faith over the next several year.
February 24, 2020
Episode 1: Ministry in the Margins
Have you ever noticed that many of the important or significant events in your life are unplanned or unexpected? Some of those are negative events: a health scare, the death of a family member, or a car accident.Some are positive like a pay raise or a surprise visit from a friend. The same thing is true for our discipleship opportunities as Christians. Many of our most rewarding spiritual experiences come about in unplanned and sometimes even unexpected circumstances.
February 17, 2020