Sunday, August 28, 2011


Sorry I haven't posted anything in a while, I have been busy working on a new site,, and so most of my creative energies have been funneled into that.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Research Reading List

I made a list of the books that I plan to utilize for my research paper this week. Here they are, in no particular order...

Friday, May 20, 2011

Thoughts: Keys to Hades

A brother of mine is teaching his students through Revelation and this question came up:

"It says that the Son of Man holds the keys to Hades, what does that mean?"

He gave me permission to repost my response:

It's a good thing you're teaching about Revelation the weekend before the world ends.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Ran across this today, I find a separate joke in each panel:

The first panel pretty much sums up my views on the weekend's pending apocalypse (and velociraptors).

The second panel is a wonderful skewer of interfaith pluralism (which is my second-favorite type of pluralism).

The third panel I do not find the humor in. I think it may have something to do with mathematics or physics.

EDIT: Info on Error Bar. Now, fully informed, I can laugh at the third panel.

(cartoon via xkcd)

Friday, May 13, 2011

Upcoming Reading

A holiday for me, I was able to make a purchase of books for my summer course and some for my thesis research. These are the three that I am excited for:

Dissident Discipleship: A Spirituality of Self-Surrender, Love of God, and Love of Neighbor
David Augsburger

Publishers Weekly: "
Drawing on the Anabaptist traditions, Fuller Theological Seminary professor Augsburger explores what spirituality looks like when it imitates Jesus and is directed outward in service to the world, instead of inward on the self."

Pseudonyms of God
Robert McAfee Brown

Robert McAfee Brown is one of my favorite authors in his presentation of reading scripture from marginalized perspectives.

The New Global Mission: The Gospel from Everywhere to Everyone (Christian Doctrine in Global Perspective)
Samuel Escobar

Chuck Van Engen: "Samuel Escobar, the dean of Latin American Protestant Evangelical missiologists, gives us here an insightful, careful, concise and passionate overview of the complex and constantly changing reality facing us all in the church's mission today. Escobar demonstrates a clear and compelling missionary commitment to the missional goal that, in the words of Donald McGavran, 'women and men become disciples of Jesus Christ and responsible members of Christ's Church.'"

If you want to help me with further research, see my Bibliography here at Amazon. If you want to borrow a book, come by the house.

Friday, April 22, 2011

An Earth Day Good Friday

I remember seeing on my calendar a few weeks ago that Earth Day and Good Friday coincided on the same day. Yesterday in the office, a co-worker commented on the overlap, not remembering a time when the two were celebrated the same day. Tongue-in-cheek, I said that anyone celebrating Earth Day was probably not celebrating Good Friday and vice-versa.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Iconoclasts: Sheldon Cooper and Coach Taylor

Yesterday was a very productive day for Dayann and myself. I read a chapter referred to me by my professor to help frame my thesis...and I watched the entire third season of Big Bang Theory from the comfort of our bed.

This is why God made Saturdays.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Guilt and Grace

We have been developing a series of sermons at church that are looking at Witnesses to Jesus' final week before his execution in preparation for Easter. Sunday night, our witness was Simon Peter.

Simon Peter is probably a pastor's favorite character, because he is most identical to himself. Speaking before understanding, making bold claims and being rebuked, ascending to leadership and shrinking from conflict-- these are pastoral traits, generally and personally speaking. Simon Peter is a character in scripture whose humanity we can resonate with because he also screws up more often than he succeeds. If there is a champion for the journey of discipleship, it is Simon Peter.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Finding a Pursuit of God

A friend posted a quote that he had heard in a lecture from the Bible Study Fellowship:
"It is cool in our culture to be looking for God. It is not cool, however, to find Him."
Setting aside the statement's assumption of a normative (assumingly North American) cultural value in seeking spiritual enlightenment, the issue centers on a post-modern understanding of whether any declarative statement can be made about anything.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A new week

3 weeks and $3400 later, my truck is ready to come back home!

(This is a follow-up to last week's blog about my week which, for lack of better descriptors, sucked.)

No more waking up Dayann early to take me to work or having to ride Brother Joel's bicycle:

He is a bigger man than me in so many ways…

To help us along with some finances, my folks sent us a check. A bit of unintended irony from my dad is that he also sent a copy of NT Wright's book, "Following Jesus". I had been wanting to read this for a while and I had talked to dad about it when we were home in December. We have enjoyed reading Wright and I was looking for a book on discipleship that would not be as heavy as the bishop's heavier tomes. If you have an interest in a thinking-man's theology, you must be conversant with Wright, and if your critique of NT Wright is that he is not John Piper...get over yourself.

I had prayed last week, in the midst of our financial calamity, that I might have the opportunity to depend more deeply upon grace. It is of divine coincidence that the book I receive in the mail is centered upon discipleship.

My prayer:

"Open wide my door, my Lord, to whatever makes me love You more..."

Sunday, January 30, 2011

A Week's Descent

When it rains, it pours.

I have never been of the mind that those who would follow after the way of Christ would never fall, but I would (subconsciously, at least), expect things to land better.

Let me outline my past week...

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Seeing leads to serving

Last night in Life Group, our topic was centered on how we view people in our life as opportunities to serve God in mission.

A phrase that stood out in our lesson was that "seeing leads to service", and that the spiritual discipline of service is a matter of developing our senses to look beyond ourselves to find ways to live in Christ's way. We don't have to do extraordinary acts of healing, but begin with an awareness of how the people in our immediate vicinity form the context for us to serve in the way of Christ.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

My Favorite Christmas Song (Two weeks too late)

As a child, I remember my mom reading a story at Christmas time about the animals in the nativity. There is also a poem called “The Friendly Beasts” (or, alternatively, “the Song of the Ass”—thank you, Wikipedia) that draws upon these same themes. Maybe growing up around animals (and being a Shepherd) impressed this imagery upon me? A song that I have been listening to this year has been similar and I declared today that it will be my favorite Christmas song of the year. I do not have a particular fondness for Christmas music either…

Last year, one of my favorite bands—mewithoutyou –put out an album which was a clear evolution from their original sound (which could be best summed as strange). It’s All Crazy! It’s All False! It’s All a Dream! It’s Alright! draws upon horticulture and Sufi folktales for inspiration and unexpected acoustic instruments and clever lyricism to tell their stories.

Their song, A Stick, A Carrot, and String (listen here) is my official Christmas song of the year, to be played for all twelve months, per my decree. Here are the first few lines which have been an inspired, imaginative Christology for me through the year. Amazing how a lyric can penetrate layers of reading, study, and formulation to stick with you.


The Horse's hay beneath His head our Lord was born to a manger bed,

that all whose wells run dry could drink of His supply.

To keep Him warm the Sheep drew near, so grateful for His coming here:

You come with news of grace, come to take my place!

The Donkey whispered in His ear: Child, in thirty-some-odd years,

You'll ride someone who looks like me (untriumphantly).

While the Cardinals warbled a joyful song:

He'll make right what man made wrong, bringing low the hills, that the valleys might be filled!

Merry Christmas!