Thursday, December 03, 2009

Qualities for work force

Posted in the class I am subbing:

"The two most important qualities for students seeking permanent places in the work force inthe 21st century are:

Flexible thinking.

Getting along with people who are different from you.

SCANS Report - US Department of Labor"

Shane Claiborne in Esquire?

Great article, great audience.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Youth is fleeting

Wow! From woodstock to middle aged...what will my next 60ish years entail?

(taken from here)

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Memories of my youth

When I was little my dad would visit me every Tuesday and take me, my brother & my sister to his house for dinner. For a solid year every Tuesday night we would pick up Little Caesars, "pizza pizza," and watch this:

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Still Learning from Hume

God has used many books and people to shape me. One teacher who was influential in my spiritual development was a Hume Speaker, Mike Devries, who spoke at camp the first year I was youth pastor at OVCC. On Mike Devries blogsite, he quote's a friend's posting that I have already verbally shared with many, and that I have found tremendous in helping me to understand church.
In it, Peter Rollin's book, How (not) to Speak About God, is quoted, and I must confess, I started the book years ago, but was never able to finish it. After reading this excerpt, perhaps I'll add it to my summer reading and give it another go.

We Teach Others How to Treat Us

2009 June 8
by Rustin

I’m a fan of what Peter Rollins does with his Ikon ‘community’ in Belfast. This section (below) of a recent interview caught my attention.

I have seen too many people I love get upset at ‘the church’ because, after they withdrew from involvement and disappeared for weeks, ‘the church’ didn’t call them. I could write all day about the consumeristic assumptions behind those kinds of sentiments that I simply don’t share. But more simply, that view lets ourselves off the hook for building authentic relationships and puts all the accountability on others.

The fact is (rightly understood) we teach others how to treat us. We actively receive care and concern from others. We communicate that we aren’t interested in receiving concern and care when we don’t participate, don’t show up, don’t take responsibility, and don’t ourselves call to show concern about others. How others treat us is often an accurate reflection of our own commitment (or lack thereof) to the community.

Here’s Peter Rollins:

Paradoxically, I say, “Ikon doesn’t care about you. Ikon doesn’t give a crap if you are going through a divorce. The only person who cares is the person sitting beside you, and if that person doesn’t care, you’re stuffed.” People will say, “I left the church because they didn’t phone me when my dad died, and that was really hurtful.” But the problem is not that the church didn’t phone but that it promised to phone. I say, “Ikon ain’t ever gonna phone ya.” Pete Rollins might. But if he does, it will be as Pete Rollins and not as a representative of Ikon. Ikon will never notice if you don’t come. But if you’ve made a connection with the person sitting next to you, that person might.
Ikon is like the people who run a pub. It’s not their responsibility to help the patrons become friends. But they create a space in which people can actually encounter each other.

Jesus and Economics

While listening to Donald Miller's book, Searching for God Knows What, I came across the story of "Supply Side Jesus." When I got home I googled it, and found this video: (click here for the comic version)

Shouldn't you feed the Lepers, Supply Side Jesus?

No Thomas. That would just make them Lazy.

Then shouldn't you at least heal them, Supply Side Jesus?

No, James. Leprosy is a matter of personal responsibility. If people knew I was healing lepers there would be no incentive to avoid leprosy.

Obviously there are political overtones here, but I still like the point, Jesus wouldn't be near as popular today as we would hope.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

From the lips of a five-year-old

Dear Jesus, please help all of the kids without mommies or daddies, and please help them to if they ever see a coyote to run and run and run, and not stop even if they get hot, and if they get to a house to knock and the door, and to tell the person, even if they are a stranger that they need to get away from a coyote. And please help kids that see mountain lions to go into the house. Amen.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Gospel-less, really?

Now really...I don't go looking for this stuff. I'm actually a little bit bummed out that I found it.

The internet gives a voice to anyone, and occasionally I come across these "Christian" web pages that are devoted to telling its audiences why every popular Christian leader is somehow a false leader.

James Choung, a graduate of MIT, and now a divisional director for Intervaristy, has popularized a diagram for evangelism called, "the four circles." Here it is, read below for one website's critique:

So what's your response to the diagram?

The authors of "a little leaven" wrote:

Not too long ago Christians used the "4 Spiritual Laws" to explain the Christian faith. Today we now have an Emergent influenced witnessing tool that utilizes 4 circles to try to explain the Christian faith (this 4 circles presentation is all the rage among college students). The big problem with this new tool is that it completely misses the point about Biblical Christianity and sinful man's need for a savior and Christ's death on the cross for the sins of the world. Instead, this is some squishy eco-friendly Jesus presentation where you can choose to make Jesus the leader of your life so that He can work through you to bring healing and restoration to the world.

And one of their readers surprisingly wrote:
All I could do was yell WHAT???...WHAT???...WHAT??? at the screen. Excuse me, I have to go pick my chin off the floor.

Did this diagram really miss the point about sinful man's need for a savior? Is a diagram meant to exhaust the entire conversation about a relationship with Jesus?
Which diagram, if any, would Jesus have been able to recognize?

Regarding the four spiritual laws, James Choung writes:
Well, what was missing from the diagrams I had learned was anything substantial about one of the most important themes in Jesus' own preaching: the kingdom of God. I was reading a lot about the kingdom of God, in the Bible and in recent scholarship, but when it came to sharing the core message of the faith, I'd always fall back on an evangelistic diagram that didn't include it. And it dawned on me: Even though there are tons of books out there about the kingdom of God, very few people will be able to share it with their friends unless they are given some tool or aid—some icon—that will help them remember the key points. So even though I'm not a fan of canned presentations, I felt that creating a diagram was essential to help us understand a bigger picture of the gospel that Jesus taught.

You can find an interview by Andy Crouch with James Choung here,
and the Christianity Today article, "From Four Laws to Four Circles" here.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Not For Sale...For Free!

Every month offers a free book for download. This month the offering is, Not For Sale, a book that I was made aware of at a conference on human slavery a few years ago. If you have a road trip coming up, or some room on your ipod, get a $24 download for free!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

What a difference a street or fence makes.



I wonder how much control one has over the variables that determine what side of the fence they live on.

Friday, February 13, 2009


Hooray for presidents and their birthdays!

(On Kirkwood's website, it claims 59"-80" of snow in the last SEVEN DAYS!

Friday, February 06, 2009

Timesuck warning: Overheard

I came across a website, Overheard in New York:

Disgusted mother to little girl who picked up a Swedish fish she dropped on the bus floor: Don't eat that.
Little girl, dusting it off: It's okay, I'll kiss it up to god.
Mother: Don't you dare put that in your mouth. You have no idea what was on the floor.
Little girl, putting it in her mouth and chewing it: It's okay! I kissed it up to god! (swallows it) What are you going to do about it?
Mother, angrily: I'm not going to do anything. You're just going to die.

--Q18 Bus

Homeless man: You need to pray to Jesus everyday. Do you thank Jesus for your food or your family or the newspaper? The devil is killing you through newspapers and the media. Are you thankful to Jesus? He loves you if you talk to him everyday.
Person on train: I would be thankful to Jesus if you would stop shouting in my ear so I can listen to Beyonce's newest album.

--N train

hidden pictures

So, while this makes perfect sense to the artist, I am not the artist. I do think that it is an amazing mural regardless of whether or not I naturally see the "O-V-C-C."

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Next time Sage goes to the dentist, remind me to grab a camera

I saw this video on Zach, from Jimmy Eat World's, blog site. I'll include his description too, 'cause it sums it up well:

Check out this clip of a little boy still high out of his mind after going to the dentist. It’s like a cute version of the buddy you have who always overdoes it on the booze.

"Is this real life?"

Finished Piece

6 Hours & 10 cans of paint

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Youth Center Remodel

The community painted on the plywood covering the tacky 50's stained plastic/glass was looking pretty shabby and faded, so I asked a friend to repaint it. If you look closely you might be able to make out "OVCC."

Planning sketch:


Rough Outline:

Adding Color:



Adding Black...4 hours later:

I left Jake to finish up tonight at 7:30... 5.5 hours into it. Final Picture to come.

Vandalism at OVCC

Restoration on classrooms that had been damaged in an act of vandalism three weeks ago were completed today.

On January 15th, someone thought that it would be clever to flood "The Lounge," a classroom that I transformed into a jr. high Sunday School room, by setting a cinder block on top of a hose and shooting water from a hose at full blast between two doors into the classroom. Water then seeped through the walls into four adjoining rooms.

Three weeks later, and about $9k later, the damage is repaired.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Paul McCartney for $99

Not to mention Franz Ferdinand and Brighteyes too. That kind of works out to Paul McCartney for $33, sound even better.
Not sure if the chaos and possible heat stoke of Coachella is worth it to me though. I feel old and pampered. I'd much rather watch McCartney from a box seat at the staples center.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Try the genderanalyzer for yourself here. Was it accurate?

Alright, I'm going to go pee standing up now.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

And I thought my excursion was tough...

Obama's blood for a transfusion? That's being prepared. (Click picture for full picture)

Friday, January 02, 2009

Still Sick and Tired

Just when you think you've kicked it, here it comes again, creepin' up.

Essentially the entire Christmas break, I've felt like crap. I'm getting pretty tired of it. This isn't exactly how I planned on spending two weeks off of work, but I guess there isn't really a better time to be sick, than when there's no work to go to.

It actually has forced me, (and Amber) into a Sabbath, as we really are prohibited from doing anything to further ourselves. It's crazy how God built this time of rest into everything, and yet we don't really take him seriously in it.

Leviticus 23:3 " 'There are six days when you may work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of rest, a day of sacred assembly. You are not to do any work; wherever you live, it is a Sabbath to the LORD.

Leviticus 25 3For six years sow your fields, and for six years prune your vineyards and gather their crops. 4 But in the seventh year the land is to have a sabbath of rest, a sabbath to the LORD. Do not sow your fields or prune your vineyards. 5 Do not reap what grows of itself or harvest the grapes of your untended vines. The land is to have a year of rest.

Leviticus 25 8 " 'Count off seven sabbaths of years—seven times seven years—so that the seven sabbaths of years amount to a period of forty-nine years. 9 Then have the trumpet sounded everywhere on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the Day of Atonement sound the trumpet throughout your land. 10 Consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you; each one of you is to return to his family property and each to his own clan. 11 The fiftieth year shall be a jubilee for you; do not sow and do not reap what grows of itself or harvest the untended vines.

The year of Jubilee is crazy. Both Shane Claibourne and Ched Myers expand on it a lot in their writings. Read the whole Jubilee passage, it'll shake your world, and make you look at capitalism, 401ks, and retirement, a little differently.