Archive for March 2003

There has been a long tradition which sees the mission of the Church primarily as obedience to a command. It has been customary to speak of “the missionary mandate.” This way of putting the matter is certainly not without justification, and yet it seems to me that it misses the point. It tends to make mission a burden rather than a joy, to make it part of the law rather than part of the gospel. If one looks at the New Testament evidence one gets another impression. Mission begins with a kind of explosion of joy. The news that the rejected and crucified Jesus is alive is something that cannot possibly be suppressed. It must be told. Who could be silent about such a fact? The mission of the Church in the pages of the New Testament is more like the fallout from a vast explosion, a radioactive fallout which […]

I went to a funeral yesterday. It’s kind of a weird thing, but two of the things I was most uncomfortable with when I was “entering the full time ministry” were hospital visits and funerals, and now those are two of my favorite things about my job. I usually leave funerals wishing I could have known the deceased better – even when the funeral is for someone I’ve known fairly well. I always leave with a desire to communicate my love for people more effectively, and to give myself away to others more freely. The people who make a lifestyle out of generosity (emotional, energy, time, money) are the ones who have the greatest impact.

After a barrage of nasty little anti-Muslim comments about The Living Room blog in a number of places, I’ve decided that the only reasonable thing for me to do is add the blog to my blog roll.

Michelle are beginning to plan our first Dinner Club night – probably the first weekend after we’re done at the church. I know this isn’t anyting terribly original, but we’re going to invite 15-20 friends from different aspects of our lives – church, family friends, Michelle’s work, general people we know – and just have dinner together. Michelle and I will be the only ones who know everyone. We will give our guests the instruction to get to know one another, but on a significant level – no deep dark secrets, but we want our friends to get beyond the surface stuff and talk about what’s really important in their lives. I’m really hoping/expecting this to go well, and that by the end of the night we’ll send our guests home having scheduled the next Dinner Club gathering, with the expectation that they will bring friends of their own next […]

It’s gonna start getting dicey around here pretty soon. I only have a little more than five weeks to finish well here, and start well on the church planting path. That sounds super busy to me. Probably too busy for me to be blogging right now.

Here’s a pretty passionate and powerful statement from Tony Campolo about the war via Jordon Cooper. It was actually given before the war began, but it has some really interesting arguments about the whole Palestinian/Israeli conflict, and how that is connected. Whether you agree with these thoughts or not, it’s a compelling thought to consider the impact on Christian missions.

Interesting weekend so far. Friday night we got to host Jason, Brooke, and Paige for dinner and some hang out time. I’ve known Jason for a little under a year at this point, but it sure feels like longer – in a really good way. Kinda weird side note here, but I was just thinking the other day that it would be cool to find out how I could be of direct service to helping the Iraqui people put their lives back together after the war. Then Jason starts talking about doing that kind of thing on Friday night – sounds like something new may be brewing. Anyway, then last night we had dinner with some friends we’ve had for ten years or more. It was fun to hang out for a little while and laugh a bit, but the coversation felt forced to me in some ways. It brings […]

O.k., the waiting is over. Our nation is at war. Take your responsibility seriously. Move in as redemptive a way as possible into your world. Pray like crazy for peace. Practice peace in your conversations, in your relationships. Think of those in your life that could be classified as enemies (whether by you or by them), and pray for them, bless them, serve them. Pray that all the “smart” bombs hit their intended marks instead of innocent people. Pray for wisdom for all governmental leaders – their job sucks right now. Pray for the Jesus followers around the world – especially missionaries who have risked all for the sake of the gospel. Avoid the temptation to spend excessive amounts of time in front of the television and radio news channels. Read a good book instead.

Interesting facts from a DAWN report. 33 things you probably didn’t know about the global Christian community. 7. The total cost of Christian outreach averages $330,000 for each and every newly baptised person. [read more]

I read this post from Todd Hunter’s blog the other day and have been chewing on it ever since. “We keep trying to make Sunday church into “community” with people driving to these meetings from 20-30 minutes away. We then try to fix this obvious lack of community by adding some form of ‘home group”. Now people drive 20-30 minutes to a second meeting and we fool ourselves into thinking we have created community. [read more] That, along with some other discussions I’ve read and been a part of seem to suggest that community is improbable without proximity. That’s a strugle for me. Now, I am very open to the thought that I haven’t matured to that level yet, but I’ve got some questions/issues. I’ll admit that community along with proximity is highly advantageous because of the unplanned contact that people have with one another, but I don’t think that’s […]