Archive for June 2002

As my wife and I were talking in the waning moments of consciousness late last night, I realized that in this world of many voices – some prophetic, some historical – that each is truly unique, and most are worth sharing . . . as long as they are honest. I find in this world of blogging that I’m stimulated by other writers and have the temptation to just rewrite what they have already written . . . but I hold back. I think I have something called PIC – postmodern inferiority complex. I think and live my life within a certain framework and thought process, which most people these days refer to as postmodernism (even though I’m tiring of the term). But I serve within a ministry context of modernity. I want badly to change it, and regularly contribute my efforts toward change, but it is oh-so-slow. Usually I […]

I miss my sunrises. For the better part of the last six years I’ve had a regular practice of rising very early in the morning to have some quiet, personal, alone time with God. I read my Bible, I write, I pray, I read a book that stimulates my spirit, I take photos of the outrageously cool sunrises that God puts together where I live. Due in part to my schedule, and in part to my laziness, I haven’t had an early morning session in many weeks. I’ve still spent time with God in prayer, scripture, and personal worship, but not in the early hours. Not coincidentally (as far as I’m concerned), I’ve had a much harder time focusing, staying strong in my vision, discerning the Holy Spirit, and ministering to others. I was asked by a friend this week if he had done something to offend me, because he […]

Just read a funny blog post about Jesus of Lakeview. It got me thinking about the many misguided ways in which we attempt to represent Jesus to a world that doesn’t quite get it yet. Bumper stickers, t-shirts, jargon, music, books. Most of us do this in superficial ways so that we won’t actually ever have to say with our own words, “I am a follower of Jesus.” It’s so much easier to hand someone a CD and hope they don’t throw it away after listening to how awful the music is before they get a chance to hear the lyrics. At various points in my life, I’ve been guilty of all of the above ways of “communicating my faith,” and none of them has ever produced for me a legitimate conversation that has caused someone to rethink the way they do life. I had some great talks with my […]

Yesterday I called a local campus ministry guy, Milton, to get some information on a Collegiate Summit he’s doing next month in San Diego. I had briefly met him once before, and his wife twice before. Nice folks – been in the college ministry thing a long time. Anyway, after chatting for a few minutes on the phone and exchanging our respective histories in working with college/young adult ministry, Milt asked me if I’d consider speaking at one of the general sessions at the summit. It’ll be with non-freshman college students, and is supposed to be something about living life as a Jesus follower on a college campus. Sounds wide open to me . . . and something I’d like to do. This might be a good testing ground for some ideas for my church sign campaign (see my post from 6/13). I also had an engergizing talk with my […]

Haven’t posted for a few days here . . . a bit of a roller coaser of a few days. Sunday was a first-hand experience of what Paul rails against in I Corinthians – one of those days where “your meetings do more harm than good.” People sticking their noses where they don’t belong, making political maneuvers, and generally just being arrogant and self-centered. Grrrr. This is why the modern church is failing. This is why I want nothing to do with it. Monday I was seriously in a funk all day as I reflected on the travesty that I had lived through the day before. Fortunately, that evening I had a meeting with my corps of volunteers in student ministry and got a chance to paint a wild-eyed vision for how church could be if we ever fully owned our role as missionaries in this world. It’s a vision […]

Momentum . . . a difficult thing to master. It goes beyond having a great idea and starting well. Keeping things in motion takes skill and consistent effort. Keeping something moving is still easier than restarting something that isn’t moving at all. Even things that are clearly moving in a bad direction are often easier to redirect toward a better place than starting up a dead object. That’s all.

We in the community of faith are temporal beings, who often take ourselves far too seriously. We mistakenly think that our lot in life is to carefully plot out each step and make sure we don’t blow it, or else life won’t turn out just right. Kingdom reality demands that we stop looking at our feet as we walk, and look far ahead – farther ahead than we could ever hope to travel by foot, by automobile, or by airplane. When we look far enough down the road, life becomes less stressful, and our movement becomes much more free. We can breathe again. We live our lives as though we’ve already arrived.

I met Jason Evans at Seed Stories last month. Cool guy doing house church ministry. I like him a lot. Why? Mostly because of the fact that since I met him, I’ve read some of his writing on next-wave and his blog, and have enjoyed it. What impresses me more than this, though, is that even in an open dialogue environment in which his thoughts would have been challenging and productive, he never thought so highly of himself that he needed to dominate the conversation. He was content to participate occasionally with his words, but consistently with his open listening. Good man.

Thoughts about community . . . 1. I don’t always recognize it when I experience it – often because I’m so caught up in it that I don’t try to create it. 2. It always sounds sweeter and smilier than it ever could be in reality. 3. No matter how frequently I experience it, I want more of it, with more people. 4. Sometimes the best approach to stimulating community is to sock someone in the nose**, then tearfully ask for forgiveness. Once you’ve both had a good cry, then a good laugh over it, you often have community. In a sense that’s shallow, but recent experience has born that out. **Disclaimer . . . no actual fellow community members were harmed in the writing of this blog through the application of fists to noses

I passed it again on the road today . . . that new sign that the old church put out front. The one they are always changing to say stupid things like “God reads knee-mail” or some of those sayings from the famous “God” billboard campaign a few years ago. I wish one of the churches in town would just come right out and tell the truth one of these days . . . “It’s a good thing God loves us, because we don’t usually love each other” or “Having trouble sleeping? We can help!” If I ever had my own church sign, I’d put random things on it like “Have you heard P.O.D.? Those guys rock!!” or “Why won’t those telemarketers just leave us alone?” or “I hope the Chargers don’t move to Los Angeles. That would be lame.” If anybody out there has some good ideas for my […]