ESN Blog: What Shall We Remember?

Posted by tom | Dec 29, 2013

In What Shall We Remember?* David shares about a recent visit to the Pulitzer Prize photography exhibition in Philadelphia with his girlfriend. Not the most romantic outing :0 

I encourage you not only to take a few minutes to read some of what they learned and discussed, but also to personally reflect upon the past year(s) in preparation for the new.

May the Lord grant His Body grace for the new day . . . the new year as we eagerly anticipate the new heavens and the new earth by giving all we have been given to Christ alone. Come, Lord Jesus. Come! 

*Emerging Scholars Network Blog. 12/27/2013.

ESN Blog: Active Waiting . . . Psalms: The Prayer Book of the Bible Part 2

Posted by tom | Dec 5, 2013

Active Waiting . . . Psalms: The Prayer Book of the Bible Part 2 is on the cutting edge of my curent thought. I'm really excited about the direction of this series.  ~ Thomas B. Grosh IV. Emerging Scholars Network Blog. 12/5/2013. 

ESN Blog: Advent 2013

Posted by tom | Dec 1, 2013

Supporting Cast to the Christmas Story: Shepherds. Thank-you to my InterVarsity Graduate & Faculty Ministry colleague Charlie Clauss for once again sharing Advent Reflections on the Emerging Scholars Network (ESN) Blog. To God be the glory!

As you seek additional resources I commend to you . . .

ESN Blog: On Technology, Thanksgiving, and Patience

Posted by tom | Nov 29, 2013

Thank-you to The Urban Resident for challenging us in by sharing his wrestling with technolust and offering us a strong reminder that this moment holds its own special and sacred purpose in the narrative of God’s divine history*. May we be good stewards of such a time as this. To God be the glory! 

*The Urban Resident. On Technology, Thanksgiving, and Patience. Emerging Scholars Network Blog. 11/29/2013.

"Message in a Bottle"?

Posted by tom | Nov 4, 2013

Message in a Bottle (The Police. 1979) came to my attention when reading Transformative Conversations. Does the song resonate with you? More on the Emerging Scholars Network Facebook Wall at

ESN Blog: Receiving from the Christian Devotional Classics

Posted by tom | Aug 8, 2013

Starting the new Emerging Scholars Network Blog series on "Receiving from the Christian Devotional Classics" with Thomas Merton & the Desert Fathers. Please feel free to dive in not only to comment, but also to help improve the material :)

"In Christ Alone" playing on ATC :)

Posted by tom | Jul 9, 2013

"In Christ Alone" playing and the story of the Getty family on "All Things Considered." That's "Good News". To God be the glory!

In case you missed it . . . Modern Hymn Writers Aim To Take Back Sunday (Blake Farmer. NPR: All Things Considered. 4:05).

The Three Gifts Julian of Norwich Desired from God

Posted by tom | Jul 8, 2013

"Julian [of Norwich 1342-c.1416] begins by telling of her desire for three gifts from God: imaginative identification with Christ's suffering on the cross, bodily sickness in youth to the verge of death and three 'wounds' of contrition, compassion, and longing for God." -- A.C. Spearing. "Introduction." Julian of Norwich. "Revelations of Divine Love." Trans. Elizabeth Spearing. London: Penguin Group, 1998, xiv. Today's Christian Devotional Classics Emerging Scholars Network Facebook Wall post includes an extended personal reflection on suffering. For a longer, but slightly older reflection read One more day when you can live your life.

Note: Yesterday, after sharing during an adult Sunday school class discussion, I was once again struck that it is time to update One more day when you can live your life.

O Christ, who rules the power of the sea and quells its raging waves . . .

Posted by tom | Jul 4, 2013

"O Christ, who rules the power of the sea and quells its raging waves, come near and help me! Scatter the nations that delight in war, and overcome them in Your strength. Display Your mighty power, I pray, and throw Yourself glorious in might; I have no hope nor refuge but in You, O Lord my God." -- Thomas à Kempis. "The Imitation of Christ." Trans. Leo Sherley-Price. London: Penguin Group, 1952, 140. Note: Book III, Chapter 34.

For deeper reflection and additional encouragement for prayer stimulated by reading  Thomas à Kempis, visit "O Christ, who rules the power of the sea and quells its raging waves . . .",

In Dialogue with Aelred's "Spiritual Friendship"

Posted by tom | Jun 23, 2013

Do you have mentors/teachers who teach more (even largely) by focused dialogue? For more on the topic, in relationship to Aelred of Rievaulx's "Spiritual Friendship", click here. For the last post in the "Spiritual Friendship" Emerging Scholars Network Facebook Wall series, which has links to each of the posts, click here.

ESN Blog Series on Rest

Posted by tom | Jun 18, 2013

Do you desire rest? (6/18/2013) is my continuing of the conversation begun by What exhausts you? (Emerging Scholars Network blog. 6/17/2013) Enjoy. Comment. Share. . . .

What exhausts you?

Posted by tom | Jun 17, 2013

What exhausts you? (Thomas B. Grosh IV. Emerging Scholars Network Blog. 6/17/2013) extends beyond the campus AND digs into the larger question of "What gives you rest?" This may become a series to go along with the one I have begun on Aelred of Rievaulx's Spiritual Friendship (ESN Facebook Wall).

Unceasing Prayer? The Way of the Pilgrim

Posted by tom | Jun 9, 2013

"The Way of a Pilgrim . . ." I started a series this morning on the Emerging Scholars Network Facebook Wall.

Note: Earlier material from the "Christian Devotional Classics" class* can be found in the final posts for Thomas Merton's Wisdom of the Desert: Sayings of the Desert Fathers of the Fourth Century and The Rule of Saint Benedict.

*Evangelical Seminary,

Best Christian Book of ALL TIME -- Finalists announced!

Posted by tom | Apr 3, 2013

The two finalists for the Best Christian Book of ALL TIME have been chosen. Who will win? These two titles (and many of the others in the tournament) have been a great blessing in drawing me closer to Christ, how about you. Anyone interested in an on-line book discussion on one/both in coming months?

Christian faith isn't a general religious awareness

Posted by tom | Feb 6, 2013

"Christian faith isn't a general religious awareness. Nor is it the ability to believe several unlikely propositions. It is certainly not a kind of gullibility which would put us out of touch with any genuine reality. It is the faith which hears the story of Jesus, including the announcement that he is the world's true Lord, and responds from the heart with a surge of grateful love that says: "Yes, Jesus is Lord. He died for my sins. God raised him from the dead. This is the center of everything." Whether you come to this faith in a blinding flash or by a long, slow, winding route, once you get to this point you are (whether you realize it or not) wearing the badge which marks you out as part of the church, on an equal footing with every other Christian who ever lived. You are discovering what it means to wake up and find yourself in God's new world." -- N.T. Wright. "Simply Christian" (Harper, 2006, 209-210).

Yes, I'm inviting you to read along and consider the material which we'll be not only discuss, but also seek to apply with "head, heart, and hands" at today's faculty lunch discussion group at Penn State University - Harrisburg. If you're currently in a book discussion, please let me know what you're discussing. I'd love to have you share "a snapshot" or a summary of what you're reading/learning and how your apply this material.


From the Sandhills of Nebraska to the Universe Next Door . . .

Posted by tom | Jan 17, 2013

James Sire, former IVP editor, interviewed in Christianity Today! As you may remember, we not only posted excerpts from his recently e-published memoir, but also engaged in a question-and-answer series with Jim on the ESN Blog, HT: Gordon.

Keep up with Urbana12

Posted by tom | Dec 27, 2012

Urbana12 General Session Set-up

Urbana12 begins today in St. Louis. Although a little cold in the exhibitor hall in the America Center (St. Louis, MO), it's been great to help set-up InterVarsity's booths for the Emerging Scholars Network AND the Graduate & Faculty Ministry. I even more look forward to time with the students I see stream in from the Metro, charter buses, cars, etc into the registration hall -- several of whom have already shared with me why they're at Urbana12.

  • [I desire to learn how to] integrate domestic urban poverty awareness and action as a professor.
  • I want to know how Christians show their belief in their business life.
  • [I desire to learn how to do] mission work and health care. I have a Masters in Public Health.
  • Hoping to either re-affirm my calling into academia, or be led elsewhere.
  • Interested in technology in the future of Christian relationships and outreach across cultures.
  • Seeking a clear calling from God to minister the Word.
  • Call to encourage grad students serving God in the sciences.
  • Seeking power and closeness in the Holy Spirit. To lead others to Christ.
  • Emerging Scholars Network and International Student Ministry passion.
  • Accepted Christ as a senior in college. Involved with the Graduate Christian Fellowship. [A yearning to serve God in] marketplace ministry.

What a privilege to serve such a unique ministry of calling and journeying with students in God's global mission!

My first Urbana was in 1993 as a sophomore at Grove City College and it's what gave me a vision for whole campus ministry across the globe . . . . Who would have guessed I'd still be engaged in such a mission nearly twenty years later? 16,000 participants and 3,0000+ speakers, resource people, and InterVarsity staff gathered in one place. May we truly are hear God's call to our next steps in His world mission.To God be the glory!

If you're not at Urbana12, but desire to take a peak or follow along, then check out



I'd appreciate your prayers for my strength as I engage head, heart, and hands in connecting with Emerging Scholars and potential partners in mission (e.g., future bloggers, new members of ESN, seminar leaders, faculty who desire to serve as mentors and be interviewed for the encouragement of the next generation). In addition, pray for Theresa as she manages the house with me out of town for a week. Thank-you for standing with us in prayer, encouragement, and support! This work is greatly enriched by the people of God coming alongside these labors. To God be the glory!

Our Mission: "To establish and advance at colleges and universities witnessing communities that follow Jesus"

Our Vision: "To see students and faculty transformed. Campuses renewed. World changers developed."

The Call to Love from I Corinthians 12:27-13:13

Posted by tom | Oct 15, 2012

I'm wrapping up a series on "The Call to Love from I Corinthians 12:27-13:13." What a joy it has been to wrestle with and work out this text in daily reflection! If you haven't been following the series, or happen to miss a post here or there, visit

Update (10/15/2012. 11:12 AM): I tried to wrap up the ESN Facebook Wall series on "The Call to Love from I Corinthians 12:27-13:13," but the love of God cannot be contained! There will be another post tomorrow.

Heaven Is Real: A Doctor’s Experience With the Afterlife

Posted by tom | Oct 14, 2012

"The plain fact is that the materialist picture of the body and brain as the producers, rather than the vehicles, of human consciousness is doomed. In its place a new view of mind and body will emerge, and in fact is emerging already. This view is scientific and spiritual in equal measure and will value what the greatest scientists of history themselves always valued above all: truth." 

Comment: And we already have the Gospel to offer! I think that Heaven Is Real: A Doctor’s Experience With the Afterlife (Dr. Eben Alexander. Newsweek. 10/8/2012) may be a helpful bridge-builder article so much with regard to heaven, but that there is more than materialism AND that Christ followers are in relationship with the Way, the Truth, and Life (John 14:6).

Living at the feet of Jesus (James Smith, Luke 10)

Posted by tom | Sep 28, 2012

Another in the series of words of encouragement passed along by a faculty friend and ministry mentor.

Living at the feet of Jesus (James Smith, Luke 10)

"And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet and listened to His teaching."

"But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part" (Luke 10:39, 42).

Let not the many trifles of time affect, distract, and bewilder you; but let the one thing needful be the constant object of pursuit and desire.

Live at the feet of Jesus -- and you are safe.

Seek, above all things, to enjoy Jesus -- and you will be happy.

Aim in all things to glorify Jesus -- and you will be holy.

Look daily for the coming of Jesus -- and you will be consistent.

Seek to  . . .
  know Him,
  love Him,
  believe Him,
  obey Him, and
  enjoy Him!

O Jesus! manifest Yourself to me; draw me to Your feet, and keep me there!

May it be so as I wrap up several days at the InterVarsity Faculty Ministry Team mtgs at Columbus, OH, and return home to a weekend focused on family and our local assembly.

"A Time to Receive and a Time to Give" -- Henri Nouwen

Posted by tom | Sep 25, 2012

Another in the series of words of encouragement passed along by a faculty friend and ministry mentor. 

It is important to know when we can give attention and when we need attention.  Often we are inclined to give, give, and give without ever asking anything in return.  We may think that this is a sign of generosity or even heroism.  But it might be little else than a proud attitude that says:  "I don't need help from others.  I only want to give."  When we keep giving without receiving we burn out quickly.  Only when we pay careful attention to our own physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual needs can we be, and remain, joyful givers.

There is a time to give and a time to receive.  We need equal time for both if we want to live healthy lives. -- Henri Nouwen. "A Time to Receive and a Time to Give." 

Why do I find these words of relevance? It is so easy for me to switch to the mode of giving it all. But as my family, friends, and responsibilities grow, its become even clearer to me that "running on empty" leaves me at times edgy. At times I've found myself finishing tasks without the grace, granted by God, to truly impart blessing upon whom I've been called to serve. 

Even in my redeemed state, there are limits to what I can "give." Alongside ministry (but no doubt another outflow of loving God), I am the husband of one wife, the father of four children, an active member of a local congregation, a volunteer in the community (in particular with the Elizabethtown Public Library), a seminary student at Evangelical, etc. . . . It was a good decision to drop down from two seminary classes to one. It will be important to take a break in early October before the high volume of later October. Pray for discernment and grace.

"Opportunities to Witness" -- Henri Nouwen

Posted by tom | Sep 24, 2012

I was not intending to make a series drawing from emails sent to me by a faculty friend and ministry mentor, but such a work unfolded as I dug through email archives and found their relevance to my current life situation.

Encouraging words regarding "Opportunities to Witness" from Henri Nouwen.

Jesus teaches us how to live in the present time.  He identifies our present time as the end-time, the time that offers us countless opportunities to testify for Jesus and his Kingdom.   The many disasters in our world, and all the tragedies that happen to people each day, can easily lead us to despair and convince us that we are the sad victims of circumstances.  But Jesus looks at these events in a radically different way.   He calls them opportunities to witness!

Jesus reminds us that we do not belong to this world.  We have been sent into the world to be living witnesses of God's unconditional love, calling all people to look beyond the passing structures of our temporary existence to the eternal life promised to us.

Amen! Entering a week of witness.

Hear the Call of the Kingdom (Part 2)

Posted by tom | Aug 27, 2012

I found Do People Laugh at Your Vision? an interesting question/post. Thank-you Bill!

As I posted as a Facebook comment:

At times I wonder how many people laugh at me, even laugh at God. During family dinner devotions we've been reading about Elisha. I've pointed out to my children how despite all the amazing work which God did through Elisha, people who knew him and saw him up close doubted the Word and actions of God. An apt foreshadowing of the life of Jesus the Christ.

I pray that like Elisha and Jesus the Christ, God the Father alone shapes my vision, that by the Word and Spirit I dive into the Kingdom Way of Life of growing into Christ-likeness and not something of my own making that I desire God's blessing upon . . .

Yes, Getty's "Hear the Call of the Kingdom,", was still ringing in my ears when I was writing this comment.

Hear the Call of the Kingdom (Part 1)

Posted by tom | Aug 26, 2012

While taking a rest on Saturday I reflected upon a number of songs by Getty Music. After a summer seminary class on prayer and considering the beginning of a term of labors with the Emerging Scholars Network, South Central PA Christian Scholars Network, and PSU-Hershey Christian Medical Society (CMS)/CMDA, Hear the Call of the Kingdom spoke to me loudly. Join me in prayerful singing of Hear the Call of the Kingdom,

More Kingdom reflections tomorrow.

Note: Other posts of Getty Music include . . .

God's Grace in Higher Education: IVCF article on Tom Grosh

Posted by tom | Aug 4, 2012

Tom Grosh IV at InterVarsity Christian Fellowship's National Service Center, Madison, WI. Photo by Gordon Govier.

For a little more of my story and passion for the Emerging Scholars Network, see front page news on

God's Grace in Higher Education
Over the years, God has taught Tom Grosh many lessons. The most important are about community.

Enjoy! To God be the glory. 

Clarification: Yes our friends from Grove City College have been and continue to be a great encouragement. But “Our undergrad and grad students were some of our closest encouragers through that time of grief and mourning" refers to the Carnegie Mellon U gang. Thank-you to all of the members of the Body of Christ who have walked with us in so many ways.

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