Author Brian Bailey

Author Brian Bailey

Where to start?

Since my chronological biography has been fairly pedestrian it seems prudent to me to focus largely on a spiritual biography with a few other facts thrown in.

My family is southern in origin although geographically I was born in Massachusetts. Our family moved back south when I was about six-years-old so the Boston accent has gone the way of the dodo bird. The South is where I have lived most of my fifty-plus years. I am married to Anna and have two sons, one by marriage. I do not know of a joy greater than grandparenthood.  And that great joy is my granddaughter Mia whom I call “doodles”.

Work, well my life is tied to a keyboard. Since I am by nature an introvert this suits me just fine. Linus from ‘Peanuts’ once said “I love humankind it is people I can’t stand!” It is not that bad; I like people but can be shy around those I don’t know.  Career, which one? Teacher, businessman, employed in telecommunications; there has been variety.

Writing did not start in earnest until about four years ago but I have worked at it and enjoy it. I write honestly because I feel if I do not the stones will cry out. In other words I have to write. Now this stems not from spiritual giant-hood (trust me) but I write to share my journey and hopefully bring some glory to He who is most deserving of glory. Writing flows out of seeking for answers as I have looked for God in my life and in the lives of others. The good thing is, I discovered, He sought me out in a multitude of ways. My parents took me to church where the gospel was faithfully delivered. When I was a teenager God reached out to me in an Evangelism conference and I was born from above.

I always wanted to find a way to serve, often most imperfectly, and there were many times along the way that I simply got it wrong. Regardless of my confusion and sometimes rebellion He did not let go of me. God is so gracious in that He does not expect us to take a straight path to maturity. My path toward spiritual maturity has been a rollercoaster process. It has been a pattern much like the children of Israel in the book of Judges, with failures and restoration.  Any glory in all of this is His most assuredly and not my glory. In truth for those of us who have a believer’s biography it is because God has chosen to involve Himself in our lives not because of any innate spirituality.

My denominational participation has been varied. It is not a lack of core theology (please see: What I Believe). So often in the body of Christ we waste energy better spent on missions and acts of kindness with minor points of theology. For example, when I get to Heaven the mode of baptism I had will not lock the gate in my face. Although I am a Calvinist, who and how God saves as His children is not my business. I am called to love my family and neighbor in the name of Christ and share His truth; the results are not mine. I am both orthodox and evangelical.

So a little more about me…

I love the South but dread August. Coffee is a food group. Born with a big appetite; learning to eat less and better is an adventure. Just about everybody I know is taller than me, including my wife, so I can relate to Zacchaeus in Luke 19. The term vegetarian will most likely never be applied to me. I love to laugh and possess a zany sense of humor. Music, ah, a divine gift as is humor. There will be no humor or song in Hell. Humor and music are marks of our humanity. The ability to laugh at yourself is a measurement of sanity.

Heaven will have a killer library all on Kindle. Yes, I love reading as it was my educational salvation. Still love children’s books; I once had a friend who nicknamed me ‘Wilbur’ from Charlotte’s Web.

Don’t care for books on tape, too slow for me I can read much faster. Often read two or more books at a time. So who do I like to read? I would say my favorite author is Philip Yancey, hands down. Yancey’s writings have helped propel my spiritual life forward and would that I could write with his eloquence. Francis and Edith Schaeffer are deep thoughtful writers. C S Lewis, well naturally in the top group. When I get to Heaven I dearly want to have a chat with him in a pub, light our pipes and enjoy his mind.  Elizabeth Elliot, (whose first husband Jim Elliott was martyred for Christ) is a serious writer whose works are a must read. Elliot is Christianity deep and mature and I urge you to go to her website and read her newsletters. Steve Brown was a great blessing during the darkest days of my life. Brown is very genuine and isn’t afraid of honest questions. He also gave an endorsement for my book on Ruth but this is not a quid quo pro but thank you Steve if you are reading. John Piper is excellent. Frederick Buechner, Charles Swindoll, R C Sproul, J I Packer, Tony Campolo, this list is not exhaustive but rather those who quickly come to mind.

How do I write? Sometimes I get ideas from current and cultural events. Verses pop out at me to be explored or sometimes a thought or phrase will come to me to delve into deeper. I ask God what He has in mind and He provides. I write at least five to six days a week these days. We cannot expect to hear God speak to us if we are not in His word and in prayer; these two means of Grace are essential. If we say we love God but do not read His word we have to ask ourselves if we truly love Him. When you are in love with someone all you want to do is know their story and understand them. Your time priority is as much as possible to be with that person. Our prayer and reading is how we act as a lover towards God in its most basic form.  Although it will not work for everybody I have found using the Anglican Book of Common Prayer very helpful in organizing my devotions into a routine. I also have a regular scripture reading and of late I memorize verses. I do so in the KJV because I have used it the longest and love its poetry. Why memorize? Jesus did. “Thy word have I hid in mine heart that I might not sin against thee.” (Psalm 119:11) I read other versions, in particular the English Standard Version.

I am writing full-time now. If you are looking for a speaker at a retreat or conference I would be blessed to share with you.

Blessings and Joy

Brian Bailey


Copyright © 2011 Brian Bailey, Author