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Monday, June 27, 2011

Next Christians article in USA Today

This is a follow up to my book review of The Next Christians by Gabe Lyons. Great article in USA Today!

From Gabe Lyons via Email:

Friends,

This morning's USA Today features a story describing us--Christians who want to work for cultural reforms and the common good. It captured that our motivation is in the power of Jesus and his work on the cross, not our own strength.

In many ways, this article could be a watershed moment in the way journalist and everyday Americans start understanding what a new generation of Christians are all about. The world is finding your faith compelling--its cause to celebrate!

Gabe

http://www.usatoday.com/news/opinion/forum/2011-06-26-can-social-justice-effort-tame-culture-wars_n.htm

CONCLUSION OF THE USA TODAY ARTICLE:

"Lyons [you have] helped lead the effort to rethink how to bring the faith forward in what sociologists and commentators will tell you is an increasingly post-Christian culture. It is not a power play, Lyons stresses, but the activation of a network of 'restorers who will work with anyone to see goodness go forward in the world and evil pressed back.' These 'next Christians,' as Lyons calls them in the title of his 2010 book, 'are socially conscious, grounded in their gospel commitment, and optimistic that when their faith is practiced according to the ways of Jesus, it is complementary to cultural reforms that value all human beings, all human flourishing, and all spiritual traditions.'

Christians ready to go shoulder to shoulder with anyone to advance the greater good? Not exactly the form of religion we've been arguing about these past few decades.

Let's see who's ready to work with them. There's a lot to be done." 

Friday, June 03, 2011

Church Planter isn't just about Church Planting

I was pleasantly surprised at what I found in Darrin Patrick's book Church Planter: The Man, The Message, The Mission. What I didn't find was a typical church planting book.

What I did find was a book comprehensive in scope going beyond the practical to include the theological. At the same time it wasn't overwhelming, overly academic or too long.

Patrick breaks the book down into 3 basic sections:

The Man. Here Patrick deals with the church planter himself. (Patrick is a leader in the Reformed Acts 29 Church Planting Network influenced by Mark Driscoll) He deals with things that ought to be a no-brainer but aren't: Character and walking with Christ; the basics of faith. Nothing is assumed here.

The next section is The Message. Patrick tackles the Gospel message itself. He examines historically and theologically.

The part I most appreciated was the section on "Source idols." He identifies (with some help) 4 source idols that seem to cover about every potential temptation there is. They are the idols of 1. Power, 2. Control, 3. Approval and 4. Comfort. Sadly, these resonate with me and have already moved me to serious soul-searching.

The final section is The Mission. Here Patrick deals with how the Church engages the world. He discusses compassion, The Church, contextualization, care and city transformation. He helps us understand that it's a kingdom mission and what that means.

I found this book easy to read, engaging and rich. I found myself forgetting that I was reading a church planting book and learned so much more.

I highly recommend this book to any Christian leader who cares about the Church and her mission. 4 out of 5 stars.

Download a pdf of the excerpt

Church Planter: The Man, the Message, the Mission | Books | Crossway http://ht.ly/59Vh0

Buying A Used Cow

I love this one. Got it from Mikeysfunnies.com DRG

A farmer had been swindled many times by the local car dealer. One day, the car dealer informed the farmer that he was coming over to purchase a cow.

The farmer priced the unit as follows:

- Basic Cow $999.95
- Shipping and Handling $35.75
- Extra Stomach $79.25
- Two-tone Exterior $142.10
- Produce Storage Compartment $128.50
- Heavy Duty Straw Chopper $189.60
- 4-Spigot/High Output Drain System $149.20
- Automatic Fly Swatter $88.50
- Genuine Cowhide Upholstery $170.80
- Deluxe Dual Horns $59.25
- Automatic Fertilizer Attachment $339.40
- 4 X 4 Traction Drive Assembly $884.16
- Pre-Delivery Wash and Comb $69.80

Farmer Suggested List Price $3336.26
Additional Dealer Adjustment $300.00

Total list price (including options) $3636.26
Tax and Ear Tags $418.00

TOTAL PURCHASE PRICE $4054.26

[forwarded by JR Whitby]

today'sTHOT============================

Normal people believe that if it ain't broke, don't fix it. Engineers believe that if it ain't broke, it doesn't have enough features yet.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Enjoy the Fruit

A great interview by two men who have influenced me tremendously. What I've learned from these two men is hard to appreciate. I thank God for them.

Remember reading a book and listening to men speak is like eating a watermelon. You have to spit out a few seeds. But don't let those seeds keep you from the great fruit they come through. DRG