Our culture promises the right job and the right stuff will deliverer us the American Dream. But with so many trying to make good on that promise and finding it profoundly wanting – the question is asked by so many, ‘Doesn’t there have to be more than this?’ Justin Camp has a simple, emphatic answer. Yes!

With fresh insight and wonder, he traces the stories of six legendary astronauts in his new book Odyssey. – introducing us to the deep faith that gave them purpose and confidence in building the American space program. In their stories, we find great hope and purpose that we can use today. The project opens with the story of the one and only John Glenn.

“Here’s a guy who was a scientist. He was an engineer, and he trusted science and engineering very much – enough so that he put himself in a place where he was facing the prospect of death at supersonic speed. He was like a lot of scientists and engineers out there except for one thing. He had this bedrock of faith, and in the 1960’s there was an article in Christianity Today that described that faith as ‘rugged and unshakable’. I think that’s really true.”

“You see him in a lot of these environments, like the Marine Corps especially during combat. He was a marine aviator in both World War II and the Korean War, and then in the US Senate later after he went to space. He’s in these places where it’s tough to maintain your faith and there’s a lot of cynicism, and he just never wavered.”

So often, our discussions of science and faith and kept in separate spheres. To John Glenn, that was an entirely foreign concept.

“It’s interesting to see a man who trusts the physical world so much, trusts science, trusts engineering, but he was always trying to look through it. To kind of pierce through into the spiritual and the supernatural in all moments. He talked about looking at a sunset, and just being overcome by the beauty of God in the midst of a sunset – whether it was on the ground or in orbit. The sunsets were a big deal to him and sunrises, and I feel like that was something that kind of came through every time he spoke. He did a lot of speaking as a member of the Senate. He would do guest sermons in various churches and things like that. He was always looking for what God was up to.”

“He realized we are both spiritual and physical beings. When God created us, he took the dust from the ground and breathed his own breath of life into us. And so we are like Him. He is Spirit – and we are spirit too – but we are physical. So we can appreciate kind of two realities – the spiritual reality and the physical reality. But we’ve gotten so intensely focused on things that we can see and hear and touch, that we kind of try to opt out of the spiritual side. And Glenn didn’t do that, and so it just was really inspiring to me.”

Justin Camp authors the brand new, one of a kind book Odyssey: Encounter the God of Heaven and Escape the Surly Bonds of this World.

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On the Road with Justin Camp

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