For most of his life, David Hampton could tell you what he believed about anything, anytime, at the drop of a hat. He prided himself in how well he could parrot what he d been taught about the Christian doctrine. At some point, he decided to trust the experts with matters regarding his spiritual formation and he learned to spout their words as his own. In so doing, he flipped off the switch in his heart.
He didn’t want to confuse himself with questions. And he certainly didn’t want to explore the issues and people that fell outside the grid of what he understood to be truth.
I knew what the Christian subculture wanted, writes David, and how to fit into it. I even knew how to make a living giving it what it wanted. I bought in, signed on, drank the Kool-Aid and even ended up working at the stand. Most confounding to me is that I thought I was being authentic and genuine. And maybe at the time that was even true.
It all worked beautifully … until it didn’t.
We can never be honest with others until we are honest with ourselves. Our Authentic Selves will peel back the layers of your heart and leave you transformed, filled with God s truth, and a transparent follower of Christ who is learning to distinguish what you believe from what you wish you believed.
About the Author
A lifelong musician, David Hampton grew up in Evansville, IN. He has toured with numerous Nashville musical artists and worked with a variety of music publishing groups as a staff songwriter since moving to Nashville in 1988. A prolific and award-winning songwriter, David has been published in a variety of recorded and printed formats including hymnals and worship compilations.
His story of redemption, restoration, and recovery have offered him the opportunity to speak to a wide variety of groups including full-time ministry professionals, addiction therapy professionals, at men s conferences, recovery conferences, national hospice professionals conferences, and a variety of worship and arts related events sharing his story with candor and wit.
David has been Director of Worship/Arts Ministries at Christ Community Church in Franklin, Tennessee since 1995. David currently makes his home in Franklin, TN.
Fifty. Half a century old. Closer to the grave than cradle. And what does Pastor Gus Gospello have to show for his fifty years on earth? Not much. Shepherd of a small church. Married without kids. Faithful keeper of God’s commands. Well, most of them, anyway. Gus longs to make a difference for God – to have an eternal legacy. Now, as he comes to grips with his mid-life crisis, Gus acknowledges he’ll never be another John Wesley, Charles Spurgeon, or Billy Graham.
But can he become the next C.S. Lewis and write something like the Screwtape Letters?
His wife thinks so. Fueled with the unbridled hope of a naïve novelist, Gus sets out to craft a novel so rich in spiritual symbolism and truth that even the Devil takes notice. And that’s never a good sign.
The last time the Devil and Gus met, Gospello’s pen hovered over the signature line of a dangerous contract – his soul in exchange for a child. But when Gus turned his back on the Great Deceiver, the news spread like Hellfire. Ever since, Satan’s been obsessed with personally delivering Gus to Hell.
With his eye on Gus’s new novel, the Devil tempts Gus with a peek into the spiritual realm of good and evil for a truthful account of his rise, fall, and enduring success. The Devil will feed Gus information few mortals are privileged to know. In return Gus will craft what’s sure to become a best seller. Of course, Gus has no intention of making the Accuser look as winsome as promised. Instead, Gus plans to write a scathing satire, exposing the Devil’s excessive arrogance.
But when the prologue to Gus’s novel inexplicably appears in a popular Christian magazine and the Devil is shown to be a pride-filled fool, he seeks to destroy Gus and everything the pastor holds dear, including his precious wife.
Gus, willing to lay himself on the line to turn his little flock back to God, makes one last deal and signs the dotted line. Satan finally has claim on Gus’s soul, and with it, vindication.
But Gus has a few tricks of his own. Win or lose, Pastor Gus is about to discover that striking a deal with Satan, even in jest, can have eternal consequences.