Saturday, February 27, 2010
Thursday, February 25, 2010
Worship in an age of Neuro-marketing
A recent post on the FastCompany web site had an article about the most familiar sounds according to brain-wave recognition. that's no big deal in and of itself. But the implication is that these sounds are not only familiar, they are impossible to ignore, they demand attention. When marketers link their products to these sounds, we pay attention.
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Monday, February 22, 2010
The best committee meeting
Covenant Church mentioned in "The Economist"
I have been reading "The Economist" for about 10 years now. It's grasp of global affairs is better than most magazines on the market. In its most recent issue it ran a feature about the new unemployed and how churches are making significant steps to provide the support that state systems do not have any more. Then, to my delight, it mentioned the pioneering work of Bayside Church. Way to go Covenanters!
Sunday, February 21, 2010
Saturday, February 20, 2010
The idea of spending an entire Saturday morning at a "chaplains' enrichment seminar" excited me about as much as a toothache! There were so many other better things I could have been doing. But I dutifully went. Here we are, above, singing worship songs that were ok (I'm used to the musical leadership of Bob Gross now).
Then the Assistant Sheriff in charge of operations came forward, with tears in his eyes. He is the one who juggles budgets and the dollar flow from both the county and state, and it's all bad news. He then paused and said, "You people are the ones who make a difference here." Then they invited three ex-cons up who had come to Christ during their time in the Santa Barbara County Jail, and through tears they thanked us for coming out and planting seeds...that sprouted.
The rest of the morning involved updating us on rules and regulations, safety procedures and lots of questions. Before I knew it we were adjourned at noon. I walked out grateful and with that warm, warm feeling of being thanked.
Friday, February 19, 2010
A panelist on NPR today commented that a political group under discussion had no future because it was "driven by an inchoate sense of anger" and had no positive core value that contributes to the body politic.
Thursday, February 18, 2010
The Practicality of Un-Plugging
Yikes! Fellow staff-member Mike Prather just handed me a blog posting by a guy named Sam Duregger with some practical ideas how to "un-plug" in life. Take a look:
Fear the Blob Fish!
The L.A. Times today warns us of the latest marine invader...the Blob Fish!
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
Seth Godin on Annual Meetings!
Today Seth Godin in his typically sparse way took a shot at the big meeting. While he is, I'm assuming, aiming at the business community. What would it mean in the church world if we would cut back on all the energy we spend on the "big event?" How many person-hours would the Covenant save if it met every other year or not at all but regionalized its gatherings?
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Is this a good idea?
A company named Strategos is teaching churches about "biblical" self-defense. Good idea?
Sunday, February 14, 2010
America's Cup back to USA
Pay Attention to This!
Saturday, February 13, 2010
Thought on Ordination
To what does ordination entitle a pastor? What entitlements come with being a Senior Pastor like I am? A private office, a book allowance, lap-top, cell-phone, ???? It can become a long list. And the funny thing is that my list only looks up to those who have more things, and seldom down to those doing ministry with less.
Friday, February 12, 2010
Thursday, February 11, 2010
Tuesday, February 09, 2010
OK, the Saints won. I'm still a bit miffed at how they beat the Vikings, but that's football. It was a great game to watch in spite of some of the dumb ads (see blog below). But in watching the parade just now in New Orleans I have to wonder, what's with "Who Dat?" I don't get it at all. It is lousy english and sounds thuggish. Any help here?
Superbowl Ad Critique
Brian Reich delivers the best critique of Superbowl advertisements I've read.
Monday, February 08, 2010
MacDonalds launched a new product just for Italy...a MacItaly sandwich!
Sunday, February 07, 2010
Saturday, February 06, 2010
Fruit of the Spirit
Sunday starts a new preaching series on Galatians 5:22,23 The Fruit of the Spirit. I have never preached a longer series on just two verses. But these are pretty dense verses, summarizing those nine qualities that should define us and give evidence to what actually lives in us.
Wednesday, February 03, 2010
Pastor as Hunter or Farmer?
Seth Godin wrote a piece on the marketplace today that I thought was a good discussion starter for pastors. It described two types of people: hunters and farmers. All of us who have studied basic anthropology and the story of the people of Israel know how hard it is to shift from nomadic to agrarian, from wandering to stable.
Some ways to think about this:
- George Clooney (in Up in the Air) and James Bond are both fictional hunters. Give them a desk job and they freak out.
- Farmers don't dislike technology. They dislike failure. Technology that works is a boon.
- Hunters are in sync with Google, a hunting site, farmers like Facebook.
- When you promote a first-rate hunting salesperson to internal sales management, be prepared for failure.
- Farmers prefer productive meetings, hunters want to simply try stuff and see what happens.
- Warren Buffet is a farmer. So is Bill Gates. Mark Cuban is a hunter.
- Hunters want a high-stakes mission, farmers want to avoid epic failure.
- Trade shows are designed to entrance hunters, yet all too often, the booths are staffed with farmers.
- The last hundred years of our economy favored smart farmers. It seems as though the next hundred are going to belong to the persistent hunters able to stick with it for the long haul.
- A hunter will often buy something merely because it is difficult to acquire.
- One of the paradoxes of venture capital is that it takes a hunter to get the investment and a farmer to patiently make the business work.
- A farmer often relies on other farmers in her peer group to be sure a purchase is riskless.
Santa Barbara has a lot of homeless people. MCC's Pastor for Gospel Action, Jon Lemmond, has been connecting with local ministries working with the homeless. One of the consequences of being homeless is that your clothes are dirty and you develop a distinct smell....not a nice one.
Pastoral Care 101: return phone calls
I overheard a conversation recently about a pastor who was described in one sentence: "He's the one who never returns phone calls." Ouch! I mentioned that observation to some friends, both pastors and teachers and there was a similar refrain: this generation does not think returning phone calls is valuable.
Tuesday, February 02, 2010
Mixed Martial Arts: Go Team Cho!
In a zany attempt to reach a young male audience and to baptize the culture of brutality, today's New York Times has an article about a growing number of evangelical churches who sponsor and legitimize mixed martial arts as a way of reaching young men who are turned off by the "feminization" of the church. They cite pastors who say that Jesus was a "fighter" for what was right which allows them to bloody each other with their fists and feet!