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It’s been a while since I updated readers of The Search for Piety and Obedience on my Born-Again Brethren in Christ writing project — but that’s not because I’ve been lagging behind. Quite the opposite, really. Since I last posted, I’ve started drafting the actual essay, drawing on previously written material as well as new stuff. I’m making good progress!
When I write from an outline, I tend to write one section after another, rather than writing different sections at different times and then trying to edit them all together. (If you’ve been following along with these posts, you’ll recall that I posted my outline in Week #9.) Since early September I’ve written sections I and II. Section III had to be expanded into two sections — one on the Brethren in Christ joining NAE, the other on the results of that affiliation. Both of those sections are now drafted, too.
All in all, I have about 17 double-spaced pages, plus notes. My goal is 30, plus notes. I suspect I’ll need to spend a lot of time paring things down once it’s all drafted.
Right now, I’m writing my way through what was originally section IV — on the Brethren in Christ and Youth for Christ. I barely touched on this area in my master’s thesis, so most of what I’m writing now is based on new research or material that didn’t fit before. I’m fascinated by what I’ve found. I’ll try and share some of the content in future posts.
What was originally section V — on the Brethren in Christ and church growth / evangelism — is pretty much written… but only in my head. I know what I want to say and I have a basic sense of how I want to say it (and in what order). I might skip over the old section IV to draft it sooner, rather than later.
The old section VI — on Brethren in Christ engagement with Evangelicals in the late 1960s and 1970s — remains to be written. It will require some (but not a lot) of new research. Stay tuned!