Friday, December 31, 2004


I'm in the EST zone and celebrated new year's early compared to normal. I'm going to stay up till at least three so that I can celebrate the new year in my new homeland...this was a shorter year for me, by three hours...

This is supposed to be a super introspective time and all, planing for the new year and making resolutions to break. But since I am on such a great vacation I haven't had a lot of time for quiet and introspection. A few years ago I would have felt guilty, Lord knows the old quiet times haven't been amazing, or daily. But these days I am much more relaxed and secure in my salvation and relationship with Jesus. I follow him, meaning I orient my life to do what he did and learn what he taught. It's not a set of practices that have to be kept (legalism rules, right), but it is my close friend, who creates a universe when he is bored. What a nut. And yes, I just called Jesus a nut...

So it's a new year and we're going to give this another whirl.

This year I hope to learn some real spiritual practices. Develpop a rule of life. Become even more mellow....or i will seem to those who look at me....they don't see the intense fire on the inside.

I'm out like 2004.

Saturday, December 18, 2004


So here's a relevant poll:

Are people who write the word "effing" (in blogs, etc.) really just pansies for not writing what they really mean to say?

Vote by commenting. I'll vote while I am off in the north.


I got thinking about this a bit from a statement that Tony Jones made saying that the emerging church will be missional. He talks about this in the context of church polity and government. His main thrust is that the emerging church must have a thin organizational chart in order to have thick relevance. Think Carl George.

I wonder if the emerging church will be missional or if the missional church will emerge. It's a little chicken and egg. It's also possibly limited. But it may be a way to know who is truly emergent and who is masked evangelicalism.

That is, I think one can test the emergence of any particular church/movement to see why it is emerging. Some possibilities may include: marketing, prosytltism, booming population, and missional posture.

Many churches will emerge. I think what needs to be said is that those which are emergent are missional in their reason for emerging.

I see missional as meaning relevantly engaging the world/culture and giving redemptive life away.

So, is a commercial ministry missional?
Is a Christian t-shirt missional?
Is James missional?
Are you missional?

If you aren't you die. Simple as that. You might look really alive. Really really alive.

But you and your religion are dead.

Therapy 2

I just emailed my best man from when I got married 5.5 years ago. Crazy, we ain't hardly talked since, b/c I moved, b/c...

I also think I have a fear that I have offended people when I haven't talked to them in a long time. I think it's stupid. I think it's the devil. I got to beat that.

Where's the friggin monkeys?


I think the best thing about me is that I no longer think I am really great. I never would have said it, but if you knew me, you knew I believed it.

I think the worst thing about me is my memory. I can't remember anything unless I read it or see it. Only things that go in the eyes gets remembered by old James. Drives me crazy. I go to a movie and forget what I am watching during the previews.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Online Advent Calander

via Jonny Baker

This is a great daily site with online meditations and such in the form of an online advent calander. Much ups to the Episcopal Church, especially in comparison to the business model exhibited in my conference's website. When we were kids we used to get these with little chocolates in them. This version has a stained glass with different pieces having numbers on them.

Each meditation has a modern day icon, an opportunity for giving, a written meditation and links to the daily office.

Today's meditation contains the above picture of Joseph from a Russian nativity scene. I love how the internet is being used to help me become more spiritual. To think all that porn technology is helping people follow Jesus.

Eat it Satan.

Friday, December 10, 2004


I am having a bit of a borderline obsession with the parables. I think they might be where we can find the eternity of our faith. Which is an important question as we are struggling with the reorientation into a new way to be Xn.

So, those fantastic episcopals, with their homosexual ducks in northeast GA (another story), have a really cool online gallery of pictures of the parables. It's another great way to use art to connect you to the revolution.

Christmas Promo

Most Christmas, heck, most church, promotion is borderline cheesy clip art crap. Looking in on Jonny Baker I found a link to this promo line, that is actually interesting. And Mary is black - call me crazy, but that is so refreshing.

So, here's the picture that got me hooked:

And there is a whole gallery of them that will help people have proper reflection in the Christmas season. It's all pictures of Mary that will help you to think through what she expereinced in order to give mankind their Savior.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Sean Dayton

I've added some more blogs to the links on the right - needing to simplify my life y'know -

Also - this is a website for a kid who was in the first youth group I ever volunteered with. Great kid, although he is 20something now.

Anyways - you can enjoy some music and such from the great white north.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Great Weekend Part Three

Finally -

We had just a great neXus last night. A great group and did some Sacred Reading, I think it may have been the first time for everyone in the room, but Heather and I....but most people were sharing and all.

I tried doing some in small groups and had never done that - so it was pretty exciting...even though the focus was lost for a bit! I really enjoyed it though.

Just regular spirituality and community.

Not bad.

Great Weekend Part Two

Lj had a birthday on the weekend! He's two now and can already give the story of salvation and has a good theology of God's soveriegnty and the Satan's ultimate destiny. What a smart kid.

We got him a drum set that I'm sure our neighbors will come to love over the coming years.

He had a great time and had a bunch of little people running around our house with him.

Great Weekend Part One

Just had a great weekend -

Had an overnight retreat (advance!?) with the students in the invert program - it was all about exploring Jesus and his life on earth. Spent time in a mall, praying at 4 am, in a cemetary,at a bock dock, chasing a Santa parade.

It was a great weekend with a lot of growth.

And my team dominated the Cranium game!

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

the Word on the Street

It's not every day I'm going ot do advertisemenst for Zondervan, but click on the title link to see Rob Lacey, a theatre preformer who has created a Bible paraphrase that is able to be acted out. I got a DVD at the convention and it has some clips on it - very cool.

It's like the message, or the NCV, but a step further. The coolest part is that he says revelation sounds like John was on drugs. That is so true...

Calmed Down...

So it's been a week since I've returned and I'm much calmer now. The most frustrating part of my life right now is helping people distinguish between posmodernism the Christian marketing machine fad, and postmodernism the real cultural shift that is going on in western culture.

Bruce Mau, center for massive change, was on Charlie Rose last night, but I went to bed b/c the questions were boring.

I will likely go out and get his book though, mostly because he uses the word manifesto in the title.

Many posts are going to have to be done in order to keep up from the NYWC and the expansion of me that went on there - so...

Sunday, November 21, 2004


It's all I can do to keep from swearing.

In a nice, holy kind of way.

I'm at the National Youth Worker's Convention (a YS product!) and I can't get through a single theory session without hearing about postmodernism (henceforth referred to as poshizzle). The problem I have is that most of the mentions are talking about the fad that comes after seeker-sensitive (henceforth reffered to as la grand crapola - who's not a seeker).

I use the term in the sense of what comes after the last FIVE HUNDRED years of th development of the modernist system. It's not a fad - it is where I live.

Also -

I went to a reimagining youth ministry forum - dang - there's a lot of YP's who don't have their poshizzle together. A lot of the stuff that they suggested I already believe and practice. Not that I am the next DF, but I ain't no joke.

Alright - also - if you are a student reading this, comment on what you thought of the last Wednesday night - i'D LOVE TO see some reflections to match with

Live from ATL - James <><

Monday, November 15, 2004

Listen, for the life of your soul is at stake!

Isaiah 55:3, The Living Bible

I somehow got a pre-release copy of a Leonard Sweet book. I copied it to word and printed it, I don't know how I got it - it seems to be a rought draft of an entire book! It is a book on leadership that examines Ernest Shackleton on his expeditions to and around the Antarctic. He seems to have been an inspiring and brave leader, whose story has much to teach leaders today. If you hate to read, you can pick up the movie, Endurance.

From what I can tell it's the book Summoned to Lead, which you can buy at Wal-Mart by clicking on the title link. This is the first Sweet book I have ever read and have since purchased another, Aqua Church, but it's a little down on my list.

Here are the interesting quotes from this rough draft of this book.

"the words 'ear' and 'wisdom' are the same in Sumerian."

"In postmodern culture ther is a new respect for 'losers' and 'successful failures' --those who didn't quite achieve their dreams, but generated a story in the quest."

"One of the reasons Shackleton 'failed' was because relationships were more important to him than achievement, colleagues more important than conquests and campaigns."

"Every person decides whether to leave footprints that will last beyond a lifetime, or that will sink in the sands of time."

"You don't lead. no one does. You only exercise leadership."

"The voice of a leader communicates truth beyond words, turth that sometimes goes beyond even the comprehension of leaders themselves. Leaders are those for whom voice- even more than words - is a way of life."

"You fight until hell freezes over. Then you fight on the ice." -Quoting US Senator Richard Russell

"perhaps sometimes it is best to be blind, so one can see the way things really are, and not be blinded by the way they look." -Quoting William Wharton

"Hire attitude and aptitude. Train for skill."

"[Jim] Collins describes such ['great'] leaders as 'modest and willful, shy and fearless.' These people 'llok in the mirror' to apportion blame for poor preformances, and 'look out the window' to credit success. These leaders have ambition, 'first and foremost for the company and concern for its success ranter than for [their] own riches and personal renown.' "

"Why pay people to work if you can't celebrate their work?"

"Men wanted for Hazardous Journey. Small wages, bitter cold, long months of complete darkness, constant danger, safe return. Honour and recognition in the case of success." --legendary Shackleton advertisement by Shackleton for 1914 Antarctic expedition

"People will put in time for a job; people will give their lives for a mission."

"We have as a Pilot one who sleeps in the back of boats."

"books have become cigars for the brain."

"Intuition comes to those who are prepared."

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Bruce Mau Design

Here's a neat-o thing I've been pondering over - It's from a Toronto design company who are seemingly very progressive. It's called and Incomplete Manifesto for Growth.

I'd print it here, but that would make two superflously long posts and that doesn't jibe (mad props to TJ) for me.

In other news...

Monday, November 08, 2004

Christian Marketing Machine is Killing Kids

**Parental Advisory: This post contains possible sacrilegious material. Reading this is done at your own risk.**

It's true! The machine simply is a business, not some kind of "ministry", that is killing children. They present a Jesus that is part action star and part self-help psychotherapy counselor. That kind of image simply won't hold up. They give a false representation of Jesus and then reality hits and kids realize that Jesus is really calling people to a revolutionary way of living, not to Christian music festivals.

To illustrate my point, here are two t-shirts that Christians can buy

Does anyone actually think that Jesus' pecs were that large? He was a carpenter, not a steroid enhanced world's strongest man competitor! Come on! When Jesus was on the cross, he did not picture your face, nor mine - he was freaking dying the most painful death they could imagine - if you think he was pondering life's mysteries...try pushing a nail through your hands.

How can you be proud to be a Christian? That is like sinning to say that you don't sin anymore!! Who are you that wears this? W.

Further, I quote Mike Yaconelli, from an article called "Youth Ministry Rant" from the March/April 2002 issue of YouthWorker Journal...

Ever have a bad day? Well, I'm having one, so I thought I might start ranting. Dennis Miller does it all the time on HBO, so why can't I? After forty-two years in youth ministry, let's get ready to rant!

Is it just me, or are you tired of seeing grown adults with their hats on backwards?

Am I crazy, or does it bother anyone else that Christian music has an army full of pubescent, immature, dysfunctional little kids giving concerts and telling this generation of young people what Christianity is all about? Isn't it a bit weird to have a fourteen-year-old spiked-haired misfit telling other fourteen-year-olds how to live life when they live it in a tour bus?

Does the world really need Christian T-shirts?

Can’t we think of another word besides "extreme?"

I’m going to go crazy if I hear one more youth group going, "Give me a J; give me an E…"

What is it about the word "fire" that people in youth ministry like so much?

Has anyone seen a tattoo that actually looks good?

Can someone please explain to me what breaking a stack of bricks with your head has to do with Jesus?

Can anyone explain Carmen to me?

Can anyone explain Tulsa to me?

Can anyone explain The Prayer of Jabez musical to me?

What is with this new breed of youth workers who look like MTV clones but act like fundamentalists?

Remind me again why shaking the video camera while filming is cool?

Doesn’t it bother anyone that many older kids drop out, most of whom never to return to church and abandon their faith regardless of what techniques or programs we use?

What is the deal with Christian colleges, anyway? Shouldn’t they be graduating students who are revolutionary, anti-institutional, anti-cultural extremists? Isn’t anyone else upset that most of our Christian colleges are graduating compliant, materialistic, irrelevant students who don’t have a radical bone in their bodies? Who will push the envelope in the generations to come?

Why is it youth groups never go to the opera, art museums, jazz festivals, ballet, modern dance recitals, art shows, poetry readings, professional theatres, or lectures?

Do we really believe it helps young people to tell them that September 11th was actually the beginning of a revival?

Why does youth ministry worship thin, gorgeous, buff, cool, hot, sexy, beautiful people?

Explain to me what a "Christian Festival" is and why we need them?

Why would anyone who understands the Gospel encourage young people to play sports in America?

Why would anyone who understands the Gospel tell young people that God wants them to be winners, all-American, first, and top of the class?

Remind me again why we pray at football games. Does God really care who wins? Or loses?

Why are so many youth ministries concerned with putting on programs no one remembers?

Why do so many youth ministries spend all their time talking about God instead of helping young people experience God?

Do youth ministers really believe that "big" (as in big youth groups, big events) matters to God?

Sometimes I worry that Jesus has left the youth ministry building…and no one’s noticing.

Thank God, kids remember their relationships more than they remember programs.

Thank you, Jesus, that you've always worked through the small, the broken, the powerless.

Thank you, God, that you find a way to chase young people into the Kingdom, in spite of all the frivolous programs, institutional obstacles, and silly youth ministry stuff that often chase young people away.

Thank you, Father, that you tolerate our egos, put up with our neediness, ignore our fascination with what doesn't matter, and still find a way to use us to draw young people into your presence.

Thank you, most of all, that you're a God who’s big enough to even ignore our rants

It's a good ending to that article. You can find it at Hopefully the Christian Marketing Machine kills itself eventually and we can become as good of Christians as our brothers and sisters in Indonesia, China, Russia, Iran...

And that's all I have to say about that.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

E.M. Blaiklock, The Archaeology of the New Testament

This is a really fab. book - I didn't underline anything because I didn't see it as a life-changing book - it was full, however, of background and contextual information. It had an especially great examination of Pontius Pilate's political career. The book is out of print, but available at used book stores, one of which is available in the title link. Why are good books ever out of print?

I have been working into my definition of turth that truth only exists in context. That mean there is no such thing as absolutely abstract, objective truth. I think this may make some people nervous....but it makes sense. Jesus was the truth - he was not a statement or a policy. He was a man in the context of men who brought them himself, which was/is the same as bringing the truth.'s a tough one if you aren't going to tow the company/christianity line of absolute truth.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Jon Stewart

I am fond of Jon Stewart and his little Daily Show - we'll leave it at that....he has entered our home throught the new dish and is a welcome addition to the crap that is american politics. (I heard that - calling me a socialist behind my back...)

Anyways, he goes on crossfire and simply rips on these right/left guys and tells them they are ruining America. You can watch it here: crossfire vs. Jon Stewart

Also - from now on if you call me with a pre-recorded message I will not vote for you. I will vote against you. You don't even know me. As LJ would say....stupid politiks.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Branded, Alissa Quart

I picked up this book for $1!! - Unbelievable! It was recommended by a culture writer in YouthWorker journal and it was definately worth the read. The author came off a bit presumptious at times - working with the basic presumption that kids selling their souls to A&F is a bad thing, which I agree to, but many don't agree. Overall, an excellent survey of american teenage consumerism - with a superbly fantastic acknowledgment and assessment of their parents roles and influences.

Here's what she had to say:

"I was entering the world of the self-loathing, branded adolescent."

"US teens spent $155 billion in 'discretionary income' in 2000 alone..."

"The success of free software movements, including Linux and music sharing sites such as Napster, reveals a subversive, communal impulse, as do various Do It Yourself scenes in which teens attempt to make their ovwn cheap or free entertainments to entertain one another."

"...these names [brands] now define teen identities."

"...those under twenty-five are now the fastest-growing group filing for bankruptcy."

"Fantasy Credit Cards...mock passports from the country of the branded."

"Raised i nthe era of confessional literature [james: just look at most myjournals or xangas], having seen how secrets can be traded for celebrity, teenagers are selling their own experiences before they know they have a story that should be protected as their own or a self that has yet cohered."


"The thousandes of kids...feel on some level that the world has always thought of them as a demographic for Pokeman or Nike on one hand, and as hooligans who need to be made to walk in straight lines on the other."

-Alissa Quart

Books...more aftermath!

I am no longer going to review books, I am going to read them and post interesting thoughts and quotes from them. Things that were remarkable enough to get underlined.

And these will go into the books section of the blog - with the link on the right.

Monday, October 18, 2004

West Coast Blogging

It's no secret I love west ocast living and west coast blogging is just another part of that. For a long time I have felt (God's pull) pulled to be out here and ministering in this social context. This is where the sun sets on the world and where the sun sets on the church - in a very real way...

I want to live as close to people who don't know Jesus as possible...I love the west coast.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Bar Code Art by Scott Blake

Came across this online - it's art made out of barcode, and there's even a barcode Jesus... kind of a neat artistic expression.

There's also a place where you can create your own ISBN number - it's what you've always wanted!

Tuesday, October 12, 2004


Hey Everybody!

Hey Dr. Nick!

I am now regularly reading Tony Jones' blog - he's an awesome guy who really let me start to see and understand what I had been sensing about postmodernism - I appreciate what he writes....although he is really smart. He understands postmodernism - not the way that the Christian marketing machine does, but the philosophy itself - but I will rant on that later...stupid Christian marketing machine, killing kids...

Anyways - I appreciate Tony Jones and I get ot sit in one of his seminars in about 34 days in PHATlanta!!

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

OH Meier and Frank!

I have reached a new level of craziness!

I went shopping on the weekend and found the best sale ever at Meier and Frank - so I'm giving them props! They are a store that sold me stuff that lets me be me and still live up to the dress code I have to do on Sundays...

Anyways - I am killer swamped today and can't post anything intelligent, thougth stuff is perkolating in my head -

VCR alert -hip hop honors next Tuesday night on VH1!

Friday, October 01, 2004

What is the Bible's gender?

I really do like this question - I think I'd go for interchanging he and she at random... not allow anyone to pin down a specific gender on the word. I am sure that gendering the Bible like this will make some people uneasy, especially (sadly) if given the female persuasion...

I was inspired by this question on Doug Pagitt's blog, check the title link.

I also like the "they" concept, as the Bible's own nature is an argument for community. Written by so many, inspired by a triune God - a story of people, not just a person - even if Christ is central...he is there for everyone else..

What do you think?

Monday, September 27, 2004

Dang! ... catching up in the blogosphere.

Since I am a bit of a ranter, and I am sick of a westernized version of the kingdom of God, I appreciated these comments.

Click on the title link to read David Hopkins go OFF!

This guy is definitely getting added to my links on the right!

TSK strikes again

tall skinny kiwi has this pic on his blog and I thought it was killer. It may offend you, but then if this sutff offends you, you probably shouldn't be here in the reorientation anyways.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

Just a great night

Tonight we had invert and our first small group - it was just a great night. We had a bunch of kids growing and becoming and praying and following God.

I love being able to follow God and just enjoy the ride.

We sow in tears- we reap in joy.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

John 8

If you can read this withouth being deeply affected by it...W.

I got this reflection from emerging sideways, an anonymus blog by a woman caught in a man centered church. Click on the title link and you can read her blog, I may even add it to my blogroll...

Wednesday, August 25, 2004
woman caught

i can't believe it... he set me up...

i thought he loved me... and he set me up.

i thought i loved him... he set me up.


they dragged me...

not him...

just me.

he said he'd leave her for me... we'd start over... he set me up.

they didn't even give me time to dress...

i grabbed this sheet to cover myself...

i looked...

i felt... like a whore.


'love' he said...

he said he loved me...

he set me up.

used me like a prop for his friends...


too good to help me when daddy died...

had to do the best i could...

DAMN, he told me he loved me...

how could he use me like that?

what am i gonna do now?

i think i'll wait... til it's darker...

so no one sees what a mess i am.


i can sneak home...


i'm tired of sneaking...

and him... who was he?

'go' he said, 'go, and sin no more'.

those eyes... i've never seen anything like them before.

i've been with lots of men. felt their eyes on me.

but him...

he didn't look at me like a piece of meat.

those eyes.

that tear, running down his cheek.

it was like he felt my shame.

like he knew what it was like...

to be used...

to be exposed.

like he knew what it was like to hurt...

the shame... he knew my shame.

those eyes.

writing in the sand... he made them embarrassed...

even made them feel ashamed.

it got so quiet.

i looked up and all those self satisfied smirks wiped off their faces.

they just watched his finger in the sand.

what was he writing? i wish i knew.

shut them up though... such important men.

the town thinks so much of them.

but me... i know...

i know their dirty little secrets.

and they knew i knew, and they knew HE knew too.

who was he?

'i don't condemn you either.'

you know, i actually believe him.

the first man i've ever met who treated me with respect.

like i remember daddy did before he died...

so kind.

those eyes.

oh those eyes.

it's getting dark now.

i better get home...

get some clothes...

before momma sees me... like this.


oh momma... you're home.

yes momma... i'm a mess.

no momma... i'm not hurt.

yes momma... i was out in public like this.

yes momma... some people saw me like this...

...a lot of people saw me like this.

i'm sorry momma... i know it was wrong momma.

you heard?

oh momma... it was so horrible.

i thought he loved me... thought he'd help us momma.

he just used me...

trapped me...

set me up... and threw me away...

like trash.

i'm sorry momma...

i didn't mean to shame you.

i just didn't know how to make it better....

i thought this was the only way.

they were going to kill me momma...

stone me.

i thought he loved me...

said he'd leave her for me.

they tore me out of his bed momma...

they knew where i'd be.

he set me up momma.

they brought me to the temple, to a man momma. a rabbi.

i realized then that i was a prop momma...

a prop.

it wasn't ever about me...

just a piece of meat...

to trap him.


this man...

this rabbi...

not like any of the other rabbis at the temple momma.

his eyes...

those eyes...

momma... you should see his eyes...

they asked him what to do with me...


wrapped in this sheet...

my hair a mess...

covered in sex.

straight from his bed....


what to do with me...

should they stone me? they ask him.

and he says nothin' momma... nothin'

he kneels down and starts to write in the dirt momma.

oh i wish i could read..

wish i knew what he wrote momma.

cause those men... those important men...

their faces white...

they couldn't look at me anymore...

they ask him again.

can we stone her?

kill me momma...

he said only those who haven't broken the law could throw the rocks...

and then he went back to the dirt...

writing in the dirt...

when i looked up they were all gone...

just me...

just him...

and those eyes...

what's that in my hand?

my hand... oh yes..

a rock momma...

he gave it to me...

it was one they were gonna use to kill me...

i think i'll keep it momma...

to remember...

to remember...

those eyes.
this was written last november after this day of practicing the presence of god with mike yaconelli and fil anderson. we had focused on john 8 and i spent that afternoon writing. this is what i wrote.

Chris Got a House!

Hey all - exciting news!

My brother and his wife Sandra, whom I have yet to met and thus have a suspicion that she is a robot...just like Dick Cheney..... have bought themselves a house.

It looks nice...blah blah blah....happily ever after.

really, they still look exactly the same as they always have, just now they pay taxes...

That's them on the porch...and I think that big antennae in the background is for tracking ufo's...Crazy Canadians!

Can't wait to see them this Christmas!

Monday, September 13, 2004

Gillian and Phillip?

I'm told this is my sister, although I don't think it is her, my sister is still a freshmanm in high school, isn't she?

Anyways, big news is that we get to visit home this Christmas!! We are all very,very excited. It'll be 5 whole years for me since I left the great white north - I'm really looking forward to it all.

Oh yeah - I think the guy on the left is her boyfriend. Nice tie.

Youth House

well, it's coming -

Here are some pictures, just a couple more weeks and we'll be completely finished. Lots of work has gone in, both by students and pros from our church. It's been a good experience!


LJ and the God-dog

Here's a great photo that I just got to see of LJ and Pete - Pete "belongs" to Bill and Jan - amazing friends of ours and LJ's godparents. So I'm guessing that Pete really is LJ's god-dog?

Friday, September 10, 2004

Guest Map

I've added a cool little thing on the right column in lieu of a gesutbook, which no one signed anyways!!!

You can click and place a pin on my map and put a little message on there - very neat-o!

If you want to you can even click the second button, which will remain for only a litmited time (until I figure out the code to rid my page of malicious advertising) and get yourself a guestmap!! Once I tak eit off, jsut go to and you can get one.

Very cool..

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

What do I hate most?

Kind of a negative feeling? But here's what I hate most: fake.

The best compliment my wife and I ever recevied was "you guys are very...real"

It made my life.

So should it tick me off that people are one way to me and another way online? It drives me crazy. I understand the desire to "try" out new identities, but I say if your experimental identities conflict with each other you are very likely a skitz.

Just a little rant...
hey kiddies, what you post online - everybody can see!!

I see these ridiculously hypocritical myspace/livejournal/ sites of people and it makes me want to start a new email ministry where I email inks to grandma and grandpa and mom and dad.

So anyways - we have the first youth worship service in the new youth house tonight and we are not ready - did you think we would be?

James <><

Monday, August 30, 2004

Wild Waves

What a great weekend - I got to hang out with some up and coming freshmen students who are going to be the first students in our invert discipleship program. I was the "speaker" and helped to show the students how valuable they are and what Christ has done for them and how they can join with Him in His mission of love to the world.

It was a fun weekend, too. Speed waterslides, Micah and I doing the wave in front of 3 sections of empty stands, Jesus play - really great - I should post a link to it some time, getting Tanner to fake cry - really well! So I'm going back to my sunburn and try to relax a little today!

Yaconelli - Core Realities

I just finished this book - the Core realities of youth ministry by Mike Yac -

Fantastic book - I am going to use it this fall in developing what a discipled person in our youth ministry looks like. It is a yout hministry book, not a devotional or spiritual living book, so it's not really for everyone to go out and buy - it is for YP's who want to bring their youth ministry to the generation instead of forcing the generation to conform to a modern version of the gospel.

His core realties are:
foundation - the Bible (good start!)

1. Veracity
2. Authenticity
3. Audacity
4. Humility
5. Diversity
6. Sanctuary
7. Initmacy
8. Mystery
9. Creativity

It's good stuff - if you are a YP you will be encouraged and entheosed (excited by God) after and during this book.

Jesus Iverson

I think Allen Iverson represented America so well at the summer games - he has a bad rap from a lot of older sports fans, but he gets the job done and does it well. There was never any complaining or anything. Iverson has paid a high price for refusing to conform to the mold of the marketable NBA star that the execs want - but he has followed his path and done his thing very well.

He kind of reminds me of Jesus.

feel free to comment and tell me how sacreligious that comparison is...

Friday, August 20, 2004

McLaren, "The Strategy We Pursue"

This is an interesting article presented to the Billy Graham Center Evangelism Roundtable dealing with the gospel in a post-Christian culture.

It is an interesting read and has some heartfelt and lofty dreams within.

Perhaps most refreshing is his intelligent take on the Passion of the Christ. I love how McLaren is able to vocalize my interior uncomfortableness.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Christ Clone Trilogy

First review is three books: The Christ Clone Trilogy by James Beauseigneur.

1. In His Image
2. Birth of an Age
3. Acts of God

These three books really have to be read together in order to keep you knowing what on earth is going on. The books take a postChristian look at what the end of the world will be like. I loved them because Beauseigneur sees things and apporaches things that I had never seen or thought of before. I fully recommend them, unless you are the kind of person who reads this stuff and looks for biblical inaccuracies, then don't bother. I'm a recovering point-out-the-mistakes-turkey myself, and allow me to tell you that life is so much prettier when you just appreciate an effort of art.

The books trace the end of the world, when the antiChrist rises as a child cloned from cells from the shroud of turin. The child grows and takes power and lives through the end of the world as we know it*

The book also explores various theories of creation and the validity of God and Christ. It seems rather convincing too - hence the author's note which relieves himself from fundamentalist Christians attacks on his fictional work. It still takes an escapist stance to a certain degree, but not to the extent of the now infamous Left Behind series.

Good books, refreshingly written by a skilled writer(unlike some Xn published books) that takes you into a world and a story that helps you stay awake at night reading - and helps you to follow God instead of following a theory of the end of the world.

Go ahead - read them all.

I'm back...welcome to the madness

Hey everybody!

I'm back from a sleepless week at camp - good week though, saw God move and answer prayers. I love just getting away and being with teens and having the priviledge of watching them follow God and His dreams for them.

I'm going to blog like a dog I hope, I've got some catching up to do and some books to put in...

I'm preachign this weekend and running an "emergent" service - even though there is so much about it that isn't there yet, hopefully it will be a chance to see it a little and get people talking about possibilitites.

Ok - time to churn out the posts -

James <><

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Jesus hates it when you smoke...

Hey, I just came across this, and thought it was absolutely worthy of mention on the reorientation. A lot of people ask me why they can't smoke, especially when the Bible doesn't say anything about camels (or does it...?), but now I have a rock solid answer right here in this ash tray!

Get your own for a paltry $12 by clicking on the title link!

Monday, August 02, 2004

Books...the aftermath!

This is going to be a place where I link to book reviews that I am going to be doing...process is this - I will read the books, listed in the sidebar, and then post links to reviews here. The actual reviews will appear as regular posts in the blog. This will just be a clearing house for them.



Hey everyone!

If you are visiting, I'd like to start a guestbook that will record the places and stuff that everyone is visiting from.

So please sign up! and let us know a little bit about yourself!


Friday, July 30, 2004

It works!

I finally figured this thing out....

The film and theology post had something wrong in the code, which I couldn't figure out, so I just deleted it and went on...

Now, I can return to creating a story of the reorientation here in the blogosphere!

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

God likes to stay a little hidden

I see this way that God constantly goes to metaphors.  And Jesus does too in the parables, expecially when talking about the kingdom of heaven.  Metaphors are limited in complete understanding and inherently wrong when taken to (theological) extremes.

Even the notion of God as Father has led me to absolutely declare that God is a man....

Stupid me.

I wonder how much of our faith, and our understanding of God, comes in metaphors.  How much of God's revelation of himself is purposefully given in ways that keep us from making absolute statements and going to extremes that will make us look silly 500 years from now or sooner...I think this may be truer than may of us may be comfortable with.


Further, by using metaphors that are inherently flawed at extremes, does God keep us from knowing absolutely?  Does this help keep our faith from being knowledge?  hmm...

Monday, July 26, 2004

I got this from MaggiDawn, whose blog I just visited for the first time today, looks like some interesting reading...

On their way to get married, a young couple is involved in a fatal car accident. The couple find themselves sitting outside the Pearly Gates waiting for St. Peter to process them into Heaven. While waiting, they begin to wonder: Could they possibly get married in Heaven? When St. Peter shows up, they asked him.
St. Peter says, “I don’t know. This is the first time anyone has asked. Let me go find out,” and he leaves.
The couple sat and waited for an answer for a couple of months. While they waited, they discussed that IF they were allowed to get married in Heaven, SHOULD they get married, what with the eternal aspect of it all. “What if it doesn’t work?” they wondered, “Are we stuck together FOREVER?” After yet another month, St. Peter finally returns, looking some what bedraggled.
“Yes,” he informs the couple, “you CAN get married in Heaven.”
“Great!” said the couple, “But we were just wondering, what if things don’t work out? Could we also get a divorce in Heaven?”
St. Peter, red-faced with anger, slams his clipboard to the ground.
“What’s wrong?” asked the frightened couple.
“OH, COME ON!!” St. Peter shouts, “It took me three months to find a priest up here! Do you have ANY idea how long it’ll take me to find a lawyer?”

Wednesday, July 14, 2004


This link goes to a man who I went to his blog, b/c I wanted to start learning form him, and the day I visited his blog, he was learning that his son had lukemia.

click on the title and go to his site, and be praying for him, R. Carasco and his family and his son, Sam.

Vocab - on se parle trop vite

Quickly - I have used the word rape (emotional rape in reference to altar calls, psychologicla rape with regard to lying churches), but I don't want to make light of sexual rape.

I take it very seriously, and that is why I use those words in connection with rape.

Monday, July 12, 2004

1 in 10

A new book I'm interested in, but can't as yet afford, is Reggie McNeal's new one,

I downloaded the first chapter from leadership network resources page, it's near the bottom under sample chapters.

It's an interesting read, plus he is very clear in his diagnosis of the church.

ps - I'm loving Pete Ward!

Friday, July 09, 2004

Doug Pagitt

This is a link to a new and absolutely hilarious blog that was started by Doug Pagitt. He's a pastor of Solomon's Porch, in Minneapolis, you can check out his personal blog on the right. This new blog is to combat reductionistic thinking. It's true until you think about it!

Monday, July 05, 2004

Contrast of Process Salvation and Escapism

I've been thinking a bunch about escapism theology lately. This is a perspective that we will be taken out of this world and brought to a much better place at the end of the world. This is the view propagated by the Left Behind series and by many evangelical denominations. I'm starting to see a two pronged problem with it, though.

First, it creates a negative view of the world. This is an ancient way of thinking, that sees all matter as inherently evil. After all, isn't Satan the god of this world? It's rather silly really - because even if this is a truism, God's plan and purpose is to redeem it all. I see this as a process throughout time culminating eschatologically, escapism theology sees this as an end of the world event. This allows escapism to alliviate themselves of a command to care for comma tend the gift of the ecological system that we have been given, which directly lends itself to industiralized Christianity. Whereas in processism, which is much different than process theology, the believers are God's hands to care for and help return the earth into God's garden of Eden.

Secondly, escapism allows Christians to make converts instead of making disciples. This way allows people to convert, or start the great race, and then sit down, pray and sing and feel good about themselves. Never growing, no adventure. This is possible because of an urgent desire to get folks "saved", asking questions likem, "If you were to die tonight...", which is just creepy really. Why is salvation, which is true life, being motivated only by death? Two words for this approach: stupid, stupid. Of course, process salvationism sees the process of moving from an unimage of Christ to an image of Christ as an eternal process, not an event.

So, I'm not an escapist. I see right now as being just as valuable and important and rewarding, as time spent in heaven, and the new earth.

Friday, June 25, 2004

If you want to be an infallible prophet in my church then fine - let's play by the biblical rules --- if you are wrong we get to kill you.

I found this today, via Jonny Baker, and love it absolutely. I hate it when people come and say, "God told me...blahblahblah..." How is a pastor/person/human supposed to answer that. In reality "God told me" is the Christianese equivalent of

"Don't you be holding me accountable, you unspiritual freaknut. How on earth do you think you can tell me what God is saying and what he ain't? You are so unspiritual! Have you even read through the Bible three times in one year? How long was your quiet time today? That's it - I gotta go down to the local charismatic church and get the 'spirit' (which is Christianese for 'get my freak on').

So, I'm opinionated here too. I think there was something in my ink!

So read the link. It's by a guy named Scott Williams. Never heard of him - but I like him already!

check it and let me know what you think!

James <><

Thursday, June 24, 2004

Lacy Fizzox

And here is another student's reflection, Lacy Fizzox. Hope you enjoy it...

Wednesday, June 23, 2004


Here's the a really cool reflection that I read online from one of the students who went to San Francisco. It's really honest and earnest.

I'll post some of my memories later...

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Altar Calls

I post this because of so many people asking me about my stance on evangelism and especially altar calls. It is originally from another discussion I was having, but it is my process right now and I thought I'd post it so the google-world could see.

I am averse to atlar calls. I have been in my current position for a little more than a year and I've actually had kids complain that I don't do enough altar calls. But the students I am leading have become conditioned to cry their guts out on a Wednesday night and live like hell Thursday morning. It had become "confessional" to them - a pseudo-catholic ritual. There were no lasting changes.

I am averse to altar calls because I have seen teenagers so manipulated that I categorize it under emotional rape. I have seen speakers/preachers/pastors so play on adolescent develpment/emotions/hormones that a student responds to an altar call and afterwards has little memory of what went on - similar to a horrible car wreck.

I am averse to altar calls because of hearing students say, "I went up to the altar last night. I do it every year at camp - so I figured I would do it on Monday, so that I can relax the rest of the week." We might as well be offering therapy!

I am averse to altar calls because they are not wholistic, which is the kind of process salvation that I desire for the people I interact with, especially for students in my city. I am convinced that Christ wants emotions, intellect, spirit, passion, muscle, everything, to repond to His gift/grace/love.

I have seen great things come about from an altar call, including my life. But, especially in my life, lasting change comes not from the emotional experience alone, but from a continuing, pacing relationship.

It's not that I hate altar calls...

I hate compartmentalized/marganalized/individualized Christianity.

San Francisco via Yreka

I'm back from San Francisco!

It was an intense and meaningful week. The service we did in the communities was outstanding and we helped to make people's lives just a little closer to the reality that Christ has for them. It wrecked me to see the situations kids were in and to think of my own son, for whom I take so much for granted.

Perhaps most personally moving for me was driving through Yreka, CA both ways. It was, of course, the home of Mike Yaconelli, one of my life shapers. I spent time praying for youth workers and pastors all over the world while driving through as I was struck that I am sure prayers for youth pastors, myself included, had risen from that valley so many times before. Mike certainly did not know my name, but he knew my heart, and that's the best! I'll end with a backdoor qoute from Yaconelli...

I'm in awe of youth workers, and I think Jesus is, too.
I just wish the Church felt the same.

Thursday, June 10, 2004

Church of Fools

This is an online church called Church of Fools. It is an effort by Christians in England to give people a place online where they can connect with God. It is truly a shift in outreaching principles. Previous to the reorientation, we would assume (I use that word intentionally...) that a flashy website with good-looking people on it would attract people. And then they could be presented (read:tricked) with the gospel. Therewithin, modern evangelism at it's proudest moments.

This church is ancient looking, quiet and one of the characters you can assume bears a striking resemblance to Ned Flanders.

Within the walls of this church you will find people who are respecting the holy space, and conversing the an adjoining room. Where people regularly gather to gain truth. To make truth true (mad props:Andrew Jones).

It's worth a visit. It's worth more than a visit.

But what do you think?

Is this a viable outreach? Is it an excuse waiting to happen for lazy-butt Christians? Comment if you'd like and help the truth here become true.

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Amazing Pentecost Servic3

I just came accross this amazing story of a Pentecost service in New Zealand. Since visiting in the early 90's, my heart longs to return to NZ, what a beautiful place. This service probably couldn't be done in our church - there's a couple ladies who probably wouldn't appreciate this amount of fire outside of a glass container...

I tried typing the "e" at the end three times and I couldn't.

Monday, June 07, 2004

Andrew Jones' Call to Excellence

I need to get back to studying and posting - been pouring into myself as of late - and I'm about overflowing and ready to pour some more out. Looks like fun times ahead.

All this is inspired by Andrew Jones, whome I don't know, but am becoming acquainted with. So check out his aniversary post and the call to excellence he gives.

Feeling like moving to France,

Saturday, June 05, 2004


Here's a pretty amazing post by T-heresa, which I hope you find engaging.

She's a good kid that will pan out, she thinks I am going to take the youth ministry to these amazing places...secret is, I just want to show the way - she can take them there!

Books! from walmart?

I'm adding a column of books that I am currently working through and linking them to Walmart gives me the best deals on books - not as cool as Amazon...but it's my paper (props to xzibit...waving hands, waving hands), and I'm not going to hand it out to anyone for nothing.

I want to write on the books when I finish each, but...I haven't even wrote about McLaren yet!
Anyways - teaching Sunday School tommorrow...on how prayer is better than sleeping...alone or with someone! Hopefully it will be hard to sleep through!


Friday, June 04, 2004

New Format!

There's a new format in the reorientation - thanks to the people at blogspot! Of course, this means, I've lost all my comments. So go back through an remember the important stuff you wrote!

I am also going to work on fixing the column up and having books and such there as well. New stuff!

Today is a bit of a slow day - working on getting stuff going for summer...easy breazy beautiful.


Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Last Communion

On Friday I participated in a man's last communion. It was something that I never thought I'd ever be doing, yet there I was, with another pastor, ministering a man through his death. It was unlike anything else in the world. The man ended up passing away that evening and the funeral services are this week.

It was one of those moments where being a "youth pastor" was superceded by being a "man of God." At least that is what "qualified" me to be with these people at this time. What was amazing to me is that people looked to me like I knew what was going on, like I could handle this. The only thing I had a handle on was the assurance that another pastor was going to be there, and he knew what to do. In the moments that I was there alone, before my pastor friend arrived, I came to see in a real and fresh way what it meant to be fully present. Nobody expected me to do anything, they just appreciated my being there. I simply visited, prayed, participated in some of a disciple's last hours on earth.

Just another day? No way.

Monday, May 24, 2004

"Whosoever does not have the stomach for this fight, let him depart.
Give him money to speed his departure, since we do not wish to die in that man's company.

For whosoever lives past this day and comes home safely will rouse himself every year on this day,
show his neighbors his scars, and tell embellished stories of all the great feats of battle.
These stories he will teach to his sons and from this day until the end of the world,

we shall be remembered.

We few, we happy few, we band of brothers.

For whosoever shall shed his blood with me today shall be my brother, and those men afraid to go will think themselves as lesser men to hear how we fought and died together."

~ Henry V, William Shakespeare

This is just a quote I love and have loved for a number of years. I first came upon it when I was in the reserves and I am reading it to the missions team tonight. It is just a great representation of the unequaled comraderie that is experienced when men and women experience battle together.

Soldiers of the cross...

Wednesday, May 19, 2004


Welcome youth workers! It is an honor to be on your screen today! For those of you who are regulars here (read: mom and dad) my blog is featured in the YS update today! What an honor. I am now a world famous blogger!

So, if you have never been, I encourage you to check out the YS boards, which are a huge source of encouragement and wisdom for me - my name there is insanitysolution - paying tribute to King David.

Anyways - it's Wednesday, I've got a cold and have to be ready for tonight. Very Excited about what God is going to do - saw Him work last week and it was such a blessing.

PS - the church bought a shuttle bus that is a 21 seater - can you say gonna need my CDL and passenger endoursement - can you say gonna need to install a TV!


Monday, May 17, 2004

>Whale Rider

I saw the movie and loved it, but it was a little on the slow has that in common with the other N.Z. movie, The Piano. However, both movies were equally moving. Whale Rider has cool symbolism and is a movie that can spark neat conversations among those of us who are connected to something very, very old (Giglio).

One short disclaimer: I am biased from my trip to N.Z. and my eternal desire to visit once again, and by visit, I mean 10 years. Hence my continued hope that this earth is so very similar to the new earth - that this earth is the material used for the next.

It's just a wondering that I am come so many things that I love and see as so very progressive, come from England. I need to move to New Zealand!

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

I am now a member of the Albany public library. I picked up two videos for LJ and a Dougla Couplan book, Microserfs.

I am a fan of Coupland from way back, and it caused me to have to take a bath and read this morning.

Oh and by the way - stupid visa company. Stupid visa company.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Back from the weekend...

I am back from ATF, where 7,000 kids where and 45,000 seemed to get saved. It was kind of the land of the altar call. Funny, I wonder how many kids who responded to the "recommit" call on Saturday had just been up at the altar call the night before getting saved. It is kind of funny for me, but I also understand how synthetic/conventional faith is encouraged at these big conferences. Josh McDowell was absolutely outstanding. I was very impressed, encouraged and convicted by his story. And Ron Luce's final session was the best final session I have ever seen at ATF. He talked about the difference between a disciple and a member of the crowd. I really appreciated the way it spoke to our kids.

We also attended mars hill church in Seattle. It really ministered to me as well. I think myself more than the high schoolers I was with. I think they were a little tired after the weekend. but I loved it and would encourage you to visit with them if you are in the Seattle area.

I have another big trip this weekend.

I'll let you know how it goes. I still want to talk abit about my lecture with McLaren, so that will come.

Friday, April 30, 2004

Tonight I am going to Acquire the Fire - a huge youth event - it's pretty exciting...I am also going to be visiting mars hill church in Seattle. I am pretty excited to be able to experience an emerging church first hand, this is where I am moving to, it's where I am living.

ATF - the bastion of mintertainistry and marketing - and mars hill - a progressive anti-relitivistic, precluding nihlistic consumerism church - how opposite could that be?

I'm hoping the students see a big difference, and that will be open to a lot of discussion. I've just finished opening up their world to Brian McLaren, now I have to be ready for the paradigm shifting!

Friday, April 23, 2004

I am Permanent!

Today - in a surprising turn of events, I got my green card. It's really just a stamp in my passport, as my real card is supposed, hopefully, to come soon...we'll see

All in all -


Wednesday, April 21, 2004

I just added the ability to post comments on my blog and it was incredibly easy!

Next step is going to be figuring out how to post pictures in my posts and to make extra columns and then I will be a world famous blogger!

That is my son, lj, and me, having a little fun - this is my attempt to put a pic on my blog - if it works - I am rad!

ps - Having a great day - doing innerviews (not a sp?) with kids to take them on a mission to San Francisco this summer - I love the weeks as a youth pastor that I get to spend with students - I want to talk a bit about our neXus group las tonight - but that's another post!

Friday, April 16, 2004

Mt. St. Helens

Went and saw Mt. St. Helens yesterday - one of those places that you just have to sit back and say - "dang, God outdid Himself here." Heather took some pictures that I hope to be able to put up here, as soon as I figure out how to do that?!

It was remarkable, though, the amount of observing that you could do from inside buildings...they have centers set up all the way up to the mountain so you can observe elk, rivers, the mountain itself from climate controlled centers with big windows. And then you go and watch a movie showing the valley below, instead of just driving up to it...

because of my transition currently, I couldn't help but think of it as an example of the modern penchant towards cleaning things up and making it sanitary and safe to experience.

Heather and I want to go back - but not go to any centers, we want to walk the floor and feel the mountain's presence. Just our conversations about that, betray our transitioning mindsets - or the realization of our transition.

Do go though - if you are near - it's a remarkable journey.

Wednesday, March 24, 2004

So, is rocking my world...

Ok LJ's here


>> jcbhbhbxxh ,mmb

Soljm b

Lj is going to interact here, but I am reading new kind of christin\annj. m ,I have quit 4 time7s ans d beyca6ming reg-fsgavhed abotut 6 times.

Rocking my world

Friday, March 12, 2004

Oh my Lakers...

Last Sunday I was blessed by God to sit and watch a Lakers game with my son. He's learning.

I love the Lakers, and will always, most likely. But what on earth is going on? Why are all the stars falling apart, lliterally?

Two things need done:

1. Fire the trainer. Or get him some training!
2. Realize it's Shaq's team and allow Him the touch the ball every time down the floor. He should lead the league in points, assists and rebounds. But His team doesn't believe me.

Friday, March 05, 2004

OH NO! I might be a modern!

So I am experienceing a bit of a paradigm shift, that most of us are right now. Things are changing but we can't exactly touch it. It's there, but you can't see it. Can't see the wind, but you like to breathe air right? (rip D-Boy)

So the other day I came to terms with the fact that I might be a modern. That sucks. I want to be a postmodern. I see modernism as a greater avenue of evil than good. Sure, they gave us great stuff like medicine and microwaves, but I don't like them enough to deal with the evil that came also. In fact, I haven't had a microwave for 8 months now, and I only miss the microwave popcorn! Modernism, to me, is not desired. It is the past, I live in the future.

But the reality is I come into this with a history of modernism. Just the other day I was on the phone with my youth minstry professor, who was also my Sonlife coach (not an official thing, just how we circled our relationship), and I was complaining to him that everything I learned in college was modern, and useless where I live now. It's like getting a degree in Spanish to be able to lead Frenchmen. Somethings are understandable, but most of the communication is lost in translation.


That makes it scary. Everything about everything is changing.

So, returning from my intellectual sojurn, I find that I have a desire to be postmodern, but all of my faith training, including Bible College, was done in a way that was throughly modern. I am a modern creation. I now have to work at deconstructing everything in order to recreate something that has to do with the reality I live in now. I have to learn to change my accent. "de" (sounds:deuh) in Spanish sounds nothing like "de" (sounds:day) in French.

And now, I am wondering if I am postmodern or not. Does my desire to categorize betray my modernism? Does my struggle with categories betray my postmodernism?

I am not postmodern in any sense of a pure version. I am not modern in any sense of a pure version.

I am coming out of modernism into postmodernism. This gives struggles that a postmodern (in the pure sense) will never know. These people may not exist for a hundred years, as the contributions of modernism cease to dominate the mainstream.

So I ask more questions than I give answers, so today I feel postmodern. It's like asking if someone is a Calvinist. My reply to that question is usually, "Today?" And then I confess that on that particular day I am a (1-5, usually around 2ish) point Calvanist. But it changes. It is fluid.

So I say this: today I am a postmodern. But I doubt it.

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

A little clarification...

I'm not trying to say that one is right or the other is wrong. I wanted to express my fear that the emergent church movement is mirroring the things that the modern church did, which we now are convincing ourselves that we are different.

I may be totally wrong. I'm cool with that. I have spent the last 10 years trying to kill my need to be right. So being wrong is like a little victory to me - but more therapy later.

Allow myself to explain ...errrr....myself....

I don't think postmodernism is fully developed yet either. So[I]at this time[/I] there is likely no such thing as a purely postmodern church. Though this is what I meant to say - that postmoderns are targeted - which is mirroring the modern church!

My wondering is: Is that right?

As far as revealing one's theology...I was using the term, perhaps incorrectly, to represent one's belief system. Like a grid through which one operates, involving known and tacit knowledge, interacting with reality with certain presuppositions about the invisible reality. So in saying that these methods reveal, or betray (Tony Jones!), his theology I wanted to say that hsi true beliefs come out in methodlogy.

Perhaps then one could say that theology, a system of beliefs interacting with reality, is the same as methodolgy? Maybe.

Nextly, (this is the last time I post after teaching on brain must have been fried!) I used the word generations, which is not the best term. I also see postmodernism and modernism as mindsets, they just are exposing themselves, for the most part, in the different generations right now. Perhaps that is a little bit of modernism coming out in me?


I do not want to say either that Mark Driscoll is unbiblical - I really believe just the opposite! Rather, I want to say that either way could be right, and my fear is that one way may be wrong - maybe not - hopefully not. And, I didn't want to say [I]my Biblical theology[/I], as if I am assuming that I am correct. I wanted to express the belief I have that there is an absolutely correct biblical theology...which, of course, we cannot know absolutely.

My major fear, in all of this emergent stuff, is that we will turn out like the modern church. It's sins may well become our own, with different symptoms or expressions or whatever. I deeply desire that we may develop a church universal that is liquid enough to transition mindsets and generations without having to split the people of God into categories to be ministered too. Do I believe it possible? Probably not, but I am a uptopian socialist and I don't see it working anywhere on earth either!

And if anyone is still reading this...I don't know that pragmatism and scripture have to conflict. I just think that scripture is the panecea, not pragmatism.

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

Methodolgy and Theology

Imagine two approaches to the emerging church:

1. A Mark Driscoll quote (paraphrase: quit youth ministry and start your own church) inspired young person decides to leave his unsatisfying modern church to go out and blaze a trail in the emerging generation and start a purely postmodern church, ignoring the modernist society that still dominates the mainstream.

His theology revealed here, is that God values the postmoderns, perhaps even at the expense of the moderns. His methodology revleals a high value placed on the work of God in postmoderns lives, and a low value place on the work of God in modern lives.

2. Another young person stays in his youth/college ministry position in a thoroughly modern style church and attempts to bridge the gap between the generations. This, of course, will have a double negative effect in appearance - A. there will long be frustrations between the two generations as they seek to understand and, hopefully, love and appreciate each other; B. this church will not be "one of the fastest growing church in America" and may even become smaller numerically, because of shallow church goers leaving to find "easier" pastures elsewhere, where all ministry meets my "needs."

His theology reveled here is that he believes that the Biblical method of ministry is to bridge generations and for the faith to be passed down as God makes his appeal to generation after generation. He shows less partiality generationally and vlaue God working in the universal church.

No doubt, you can even read into my writing my own theology, and judge by the method of my writing, where I place my emphasis and value. My methodology, through stories, electronic media, in a somewhat scholarly place for those who love youth...shows my theology through in my value for God's working, value of community and value of the next generation.

I am deathly afraid that method one may be unbiblical!

Not even in a judging way or a condescending way. I am simply finding myself often afraid that the methodologies used do not line up with a Biblical theology. I see methodolgies that look incredibly successful and I do not doubt that God is working...but I wonder if the leaders are leading from a Biblical theology or a pragmatic theology?

Perhaps that is my greates question - whose answer may be my greatest fear.
What is the emergent church?

I was asked today, twice, and couldn't form an answer. Maybe that's what it is...a church, a group of people following God without the answer.

Are answers a modern imposition on following Christ?

I think I am going to spend some time trying to delineate the impositions of modernism on Christianity.

Monday, March 01, 2004

I'm back from a busy weekend.

We did the 30 hour Famine this weekend for the first time with this group. It was really cool and fun to have the kids go through the things they did.

I am a little brain dead right now - more inteligence later!

Friday, February 27, 2004

Oh yeah...a little bit about myself!

I'm a twentysomething Canadian living in Oregon, USA.

I have a B.Sc. in Mathematics, from Nipissing University in Canada, and then a B.S. (ohh the irony) in Youth Ministry, from Toccoa Falls College in Georgia.

I have a great wife (who is fine looking also) and a great son. They make me who I am, and make sure I look good too.

I am currently a youth pastor to high school and college students.

I am engaging postmodernism and flowing with it.

I love being pomo.
Good morning...

This is the first post in the reorient blog.

Inspired by an article by Leonard Sweet I will be detailing and expressing the current culture, thoughts and deisres towards the reorientation.

I believe the church, Christian church, is in need of and set up for a new change. Similar to the reformation in severity and mass of change, but more resembling a change in orientation.

Wher is the church facing?

I hope this will be fun, will be engaging spirtually, emotionally and intellectually.

I hope we can grow together. I am amped in view of the future of God's kingdom!

It's not of this world!