Michael W. Austin

Ideas that matter.

Month: May 2015 (page 1 of 2)

3 Things You Can Do Today to Lead a More Virtuous Life


Growth in the character of Christ can be slow and frustrating. While we can’t control the process, we do have a contribution to make to it. By attending to our character in God-dependent, focused, and intentional ways, we can make genuine progress in leading a more virtuous life. This will enable us to better reflect Christ to others.

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C.S. Lewis on the Purpose of Becoming a Christian

This is why I’m so passionate about cultivating Christian character, and offering resources to others who also long to be deeply transformed by Christ:

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A Trip around the Sun


This is a good book, though at first I wasn’t sure that was going to be the case. But after I got into it, I appreciated its honesty and transparency, and I found many pieces of challenging wisdom in its pages.

The main theme of the book is adventure. This could involve a zip line in the Andes Mountains, starting a church in Washington, D.C., eating lunch in the Senate dining room, or raising kids, loving your spouse, and cultivating deep friendships. The authors, Mark Batterson and Richard Foth, share stories about all of these experiences, and many more, in ways that are challenging and inspiring.

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An Authentic Christianity

authenticTo thine own self be true?

In many ways, I’m skeptical about our culture’s celebration of authenticity. However, there is something significant about this idea for followers of Christ, if we understand and apply it in the right way.

One of the things I will occasionally do on this blog is offer up important ideas from Christian thinkers, past and present, and show their relevance for us today. So let’s take a look at the thought of the Danish Christian philosopher Søren Kierkegaard on authentic Christianity.

Kierkegaard believed that philosophy should focus on life’s deep questions about God, humanity, ethics, and meaning. However, he approaches these questions in a way that is practical and prophetic. He discusses a process by which we can acquire deep satisfaction and become authentic followers of Christ, a process that is often referred to as “The Stages on Life’s Way.”

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Reflections from a Middle-Aged Man

candlesI just turned 46 years old. I’m confident this means that I’m well into the second half of my existence on this planet. I’m certain it means I’m closer to 50 than 40…

Here are some fairly random but hopefully helpful thoughts at this point of my life.

Over the past several years, both personally and professionally, my interest in character and its connections to the Christian life has intensified. This has led to the renovation and refocusing of this blog, as well as several publications and speaking opportunities. One result of this is that I’ve reflected more upon my own character as it plays out in my everyday life. Sometimes this is encouraging. Sometimes it is painful.

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