In the summer of 2016, I stepped down from a 20-year pastorate in southern New England, and moved with my wife Janis to Los Angeles, with no jobs or forwarding address.

There was a method to our madness. I wanted to take an extended leave from ministry to tackle some writing projects pressing on my heart, and to do so near our daughter and only child, Hannah. From 2016 to 2019 I completed three movie scripts, two novels, five episodes for an hour-long TV series, a 40-day devotional on sexual wholeness called Train Yourself To Be Godly, and a devotional on the Beatitudes called Living Under The Cross.

As I was writing Train Yourself To Be Godly I had the thought that this was to be more than a book, but a ministry. The premise behind the book is that an impurity struggle (such as porn) is both a spiritual problem and a discipline problem. Sin not only needs to be repented of, but unlearned. Freedom comes when Christ is allowed to train every part of me – spirit, body, mind, will and emotions.

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that the same could be said of a number of problem areas in the life of Christians, from biblical illiteracy, to financial troubles, to marriage struggles, even race relations.

Train Yourself Ministry was born, to encourage the pursuit of wholistic Christ-centered discipline that gives attention to every part of our being (see 1 Thessalonians 5:23).

Janis and I are now back on the East Coast, where I’ve been serving as lead pastor of Bridgeway Community Church near Hollywood-California, Maryland. (Yes, there’s something funny about trading in one Hollywood for another!) In the meantime, the hope and prayer remains to see the full flowering of the seeds planted on the West Coast.

Bear’s Books

Living Under The Cross Book2019-03-30T19:17:40+00:00
Train Yourself To Be Godly Book2019-03-30T19:46:42+00:00