Wild Goose Chase
Seminary Education Fundraising
I am pursuing a Master of Ministry degree through St. Stephen’s University (SSU) and need your help. Going to seminary is very expense – so in an effort to raise funds, I have started an Etsy shop selling handcrafted magnetic locking hollow book safes and embroidered book protecting drawstring bags.
The Wild Goose Story
Legend states that some of the Celtic believers in the British Isles used the wild goose to symbolize the Holy Spirit instead of the traditional dove. Unlike the dove, which is pictured as calm and gentle, a wild goose will attack you and is in essence wild, untamed, and uncontrolled.
In similar fashion, the Holy Spirit is unpredictable – blowing to and fro like the wind (John 3:8) and coming in power (Acts 1:8), disturbing the status quo and setting the people into a new adventure with God.
When you couple this picture of the Holy Spirit with the Shakespearean phrase, “a wild goose chase”, you get the recipe for mystery and adventure. The choices and decisions of God may not be those of man – in fact, most likely, people will look at these choices in horror, thinking that you are embarking on a wild goose chase – a foolish adventure that will only end in disaster.
Yet, if the Holy Spirit is the Wild Goose that one chases…well, then everything changes. Things that seem foolish to us become wise in the sight of God Almighty as we trade worldly security for radical obedience, judgment for mercy, and our life for His life.
To chase the Wild Goose is to embark on an adventure within the upside-down Kingdom of Heaven.
What Is This Site About?
Many years ago the Creator of Heaven and Earth told me to follow the Wild Goose (aka The Holy Spirit) no matter where He took me. In the mist of the journey I started this blog to record the things He taught me along that Ancient Path.
As on any journey, there are things planned and unplanned. The posts on this blog reflect this truth – as there are planned items (Book Reviews, Theological Thoughts, Backpacking Adventures, etc) and there are unplanned items (Home Repairs, Current Events, etc).
Lord willing you will enjoy reading these posts as much as I enjoy writing them. :)
I am no longer my own, but yours.
Use me as you choose;
rank me alongside whoever You choose;
put me to doing, put me to suffering;
let me be employed for You, or laid aside for You;
raised up for You, or brought down low for You;
let me be full, let me be empty;
let me have all things, let me have nothing;
with my whole heart I freely choose to yield
all things to Your ordering and approval.
– Celtic New Years’ Covenant Service
Greetings! My name is Joshua Hopping and I am a Son of the Most High journeying through a foreign land following the Wild Goose (i.e. the Holy Spirit) one step at a time.
As I journey along the Way, I have the privilege of serving the body of the King in different ways at different times including time spent as a church planter, pastor, mission board member, teacher, and all-around grunt. At the present moment I hold no title nor position of honor – I am simply a man chasing the Wild Goose and trying to join Jesus in what He is doing around me.
Along the Way there are many tribes or streams of people who are following the King of Kings. While all of these tribes are valuable members of the greater Body of Christ, the tribe that most closely echoes the cries of my heart is the Association of Vineyard Churches.
I am a voracious reader who loves studying church history, theology, and world missions. A more detailed biography can be found on the “Author’s Bio” page for those who want more information.
Adventures Journals And Sundry Thoughts
I wanted to include this quote by St. Antony of the Desert on my last post…but it was way too long for that post, so I decided to post it separately. I would, however, highly recommend everyone to read The Life of Antony by St. Athanasius as soon as possible. Written in 360 C.E., it was […]
For the past 13 years I have worked in an office where the majority of my coworkers regular go out to eat each and every day. Fancy to-go boxes fill the breakroom refrigerator while I carry around an old lunch box cast aside by my son with a simple sandwich or last night’s leftovers inside…. […]
In the intervening years between the time of the Desert Fathers (4th and 5th century C.E.) and today (21st century C.E.), many people have sought to incorporate the concepts promoted by the humble men and women of the desert. St. Augustine (354-430 C.E.), a notable materialistic playboy before his conversion to Christianity, was especially taken […]
St. Anthony, the most famous of the Desert Fathers, was reported by St. Athanasius as teaching his follow sojourners not to pursue nor yearn for earthly possessions. Rather, followers of Jesus were to pursue “prudence, justice, temperance, courage, understanding, love, concern for the poor, faith in Christ, freedom from anger,” and “hospitality.”  These are […]
Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput recently remarked that “Americans have never liked history” since the “past comes with obligations on the present, and the most cherished illusion of American life is that we can remake ourselves at will.” This self-imposed historical amnesia causes the church to have an unhealthy “egocentric obsession with the present.” Christianity, however, […]
It is common to stereotype small rural communities as being resistant to accepting women pastors. My experiences in small rural communities has shown the opposite with rural communities accepting and embracing women pastors. I know that being a male has colored my experiences a bit. However, being a male did automatically granted me entrance into the “locker […]
Sandra Richter is an associate professor of Old Testament at Asbury Theological Seminary who has taught the Old Testament for decades in “an array of educational and ministry positions.” During her tenure she noticed that the overwhelming majority of Christians do not know and/or understand how the Old Testament impacts their lives as a follower […]
Soul care. It is very important and also very much overlooked in today’s I-must-all-way-be-busy world. A while everyone is in danger of ignoring their own soul care, those on the front lines of fighting social injustices (i.e. pastors, nurses, doctors, social workers, etc.) are extremely vulnerable. These are the people with huge hearts who strive […]
Looking For Something?
- Let us increase our dedication…
- The Spiritual Battle Behind Simple Living
- Simplicity and Self-Sacrifice: Lessons from the Desert Fathers (Part 3 of 3)
- Simplicity and Self-Sacrifice: Lessons from the Desert Fathers (Part 2 of 3)
- Simplicity and Self-Sacrifice: Lessons from the Desert Fathers (Part 1 of 3)