JR. Forasteros

Blogger, Pastor, Podcaster

When you think of Jesus, who do you think of? What about the words Church or Christianity? If you’re anything like me, you’ve met Christians who are ugly, hateful people. You’ve been burned by people who claim to follow Jesus. But I bet you’ve also met some incredibly kind, thoughtful and generous people who call themselves Christians, too. Me too. It’s a big mess, one I’m still learning to make sense of.

Here’s the story of how I learned to love the Church (and why I blog about pop culture):

I was born into the Church. I’ve been a part of the Church my whole life. My best and worst moments have happened in the Church. The best and worst people I’ve ever met have been Church people.

I always wondered how something could be so beautiful and so awful at the same time.

The Church will probably always be an institution. That doesn’t  have to be bad. But when the people start serving the institution, rather than the other way around, that’s when things get toxic.  Jesus never meant for the Church to keep people from God. He meant for the Church to help us discover the God who is already working all around us. In every culture. In every place.

What does the 21st century Church look like? What does it look like to follow Jesus today? Jesus’ resurrection was the beginning of a whole new story, one that each of our stories can be part of. The question is: are we paying attention? Are we telling the right story?

So that’s what I do. I learn stories. I critique stories. And I’m always trying to find where God is working and join in.

What I Do Well

Mouse over the colored bars to see my strengths.

Bring Me in to Speak

When Jesus announced the good news about God’s rule, he did so in language his listeners would understand: stories about farmers, fathers and sons and animals. His teaching removed barriers between people and God. I strive to emulate Jesus’ example. I combine creative, powerful biblical theology with real-world, relevant application. I’m fun, funny and provocative.

Check out my speaking page!

More Info

Degree
  • BA in Religious Studies, Southwest Baptist University (2003)
  • MA in Religious Studies, New Testament and Early Christianity, University of Missouri-Columbia (2006)
Exprience
  • Teaching Pastor (2010-Present)
  • Podcasting (2011-Present)
  • Young Adult Pastor (2009-2010)
  • Blogging (2001-Present)
  • College Pastor (2005-2009)
  • Youth Pastor (2003-2009)
  • Graduate Teaching Assistant (2003-2006)
Contact info

Blogger, Pastor, Podcaster

Areas of Specialty

  • Preaching & Teaching
  • Theology
  • Biblical Studies
  • Pop Culture
  • Film & TV Criticism
  • Literature
  • Church History

Don’t Just Take My Word

  • You'd think that someone with such a substantive beard would be hard to understand. Far from it. JR.'s theological knowledge, pop culture awareness, and earnest nature make him an engaging speaker you want to listen to.

    Blake Atwood
    Blake Atwood Editor at FaithVillage.com and Author of The Gospel According to Breaking Bad
  • JR. passionately believes God is involved in everyday life. From movies to music, his writings are run through with the assumption that if God has spoken to and through His creation, then it is our job to look for his presence. No one does it better than JR.

    Tom Fuerst
    Tom Fuerst Teaching Pastor, Christ United Methodist Church - Memphis
  • JR. is the most worthy intersector of culture and theology.  He is prolific and provocative without losing respect nor being disrespectful.  Read him, you'll love him too.

    Rev. Evan M. Abla
    Rev. Evan M. Abla United Theological Seminary
  • Every time I hear JR. speak, he delivers. Few people combine intellect, practicality, and humor like JR. He embodies what he proclaims and that makes him an effective voice in our culture.

    Rev. Sam Barber
    Rev. Sam Barber Lead Pastor, Shepherd Church of the Nazarene
  • JR. is a great storyteller, weaving pop-culture, our stories and God's story into a life-changing message.  God is using JR. in powerful ways to connect, encourage, and challenge his listeners.

    Paul Dazet
    Paul Dazet Lead Pastor, Journey Church of the Nazarene
  • JR. teaches in such a way that the listener is compelled to reflect upon how the gospel is being lived out through his or her own life. JR.'s ability to design a message to meet people where they are is amazing. I've never been disappointed.

    Tiffany Malloy
    Tiffany Malloy Momma, Blogger, Writer
  • Since first hearing JR speak, he has always been a favorite of mine. He brings the gospels to life in a way that is rare in today's Christian culture but so needed and beautiful.

    Ashley Williams
    Ashley Williams Digital Brand Manager, Catalyst
  • JR.'s ability to draw out Truth with intelligence and relativity to the culture has impacted my life. No topic is too challenging for JR. to begin a conversation, asking questions which lead to further exploration of any subject, leading to a new perspective.

    Becky Brown
    Becky Brown Club New Life Coordinator, New Life Ministries
  • JR. is a master in the art of teaching.  His carefully prepared words have the power of a cello solo in the park mixed with a rock concert on a summer night.  His genuine care for his audience inspires custom creations that both teach and provoke action.

    Anthony Mako
    Anthony Mako Liturgical Artist and Musician
  • JR. Forasteros is not to be trusted. I came onto his website just to read about my favorite shows and movies, and instead I'm taught how to critically evaluate them and discover where Christ is present in them? Bah. I'm going back to TMZ.

    Scott Parsons-Facetti
    Scott Parsons-Facetti Director of Chi-Alpha Internationals, University of Missouri
  • JR. is a gifted speaker. He challenges me to see things in fresh ways, while at the same time relating his messages to everyday life.

    Lorie Langdon
    Lorie Langdon Author, DOON series

Batman!

Something you should know up front: I love the Batman. Everyone loves Batman, obviously. He’s the best superhero. But I’m dedicating a whole section of my page to the Batman. So that should tell you that I’m a little bit obsessed. If you want to know why, here are a few of the posts I’ve written concerning Gotham’s caped crusader!

My Team

I blog about Pop Culture, Movies and more at Norville Rogers.

Drop Me a Line!

Got a question? Comment? Let me know what's on your mind!

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