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Showing posts from September, 2010

Review: The Gospel According to Jesus

The Gospel According to JesusChris Seay Thomas Nelson 2010Surprised, pleasantly, and challenged.  That’s how I’d describe my review of this book.  I’d read others from his circle of friends and been disappointed, to be honest.  I expected more of the same from Chris Seay.  I was wrong.  There is more focus on the things of God and more depth here than I’d seen elsewhere.  The author defines righteousness, the gospel, justification and even takes on the imago dei.  He’s not putting out some fluff here.  Surprised?  The emerging/emergent elements are coming of age.  And in the process rediscovering some truth that the mainline had sidelined.  My hope is that this continues to affect their lives.  It’s like watching the fervor of the boomers in the 60’s again.  Let’s see if the new generation can pull it off and not be defined as an “unrealized” (Tom Brokaw) generation.Chris Seay opens his book with a quote from Gandhi who says basically that he likes Jesus but wonders about His follower…

Summer, Simmer, School

Yikes!  This month is nearer gone and I'm just now realizing that.  Seems like that is a recurring theme lately. 

Speaking of recurring themes---DADT just got put on the back burner in the Senate.  Not surprised.  I think it was expected and just in time for it to be an issue for the midterms.  That had to a coincident, of course.  So now, I guess they back up and try it again.  Except a bunch of them need to go campaign, so is there any time?  Did the GaGa rally help or hinder or just offer a side show? The Senators from that state certainly weren't moved by it.  Oh well, like so many things lately it'll just have to wait.  Wait for the Congress, but I wonder what the Executive Branch can do?

Summer is almost officially over.  Just a couple of more days now.  Where I live the pools are closed, the private ones, too, and the AC's have been pulled out of the windows.  Very few people here have central units.  Except for allergies and extended warm spells really don'…

Review: the Mocking Bird Parables

the Mocking Bird ParablesTransforming Lives through the Power of Story Matt LittonTyndale House Publishers, Inc.2010The Mocking Bird Parables lives up to the endorsements on its back cover as few books have.  It is insightful and enchanting.  As the title hints, it is based on Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird,  which just celebrated its fortieth anniversary.  So Litton’s book is timely and a good follow up to the novel.  Reading groups could easily use it for a great discussion guide.  It does have a short set of reflection questions at the end for that purpose.Each of its ten chapters reflects on either a major character or scene from the novel.  The reader finds relevant issues like building relationships, role of women, ecology, finances, parenting and several other topics presented by the author.  His discussions are personable and pointed.  Gently most of the time, happily.  I liked his discussions of how his own perceptions have changed over time.  That’s a good reminder that …

Review: OutLive Your Life

OutLive Your LifeMax LucadoThomas Nelson 2010Max Lucado has produced another of his gentle reads that pack a punch.  This one challenges the reader on numerous levels while tracking through parts of the book of Acts.  So for those of you who yearn for the first century church, your time has arrived.  Beware though, for what you wish.  The first century church did not sit quietly in a pew once a week.  Lucado skillfully shows how 21st century life fits into first century church.This author is probably the best at finding anecdotes to illustrate his points that I have read.  Like many of his other books this strikes a balance between the illustrations and the text.  Each chapter draws you in and then challenges.  If you don’t like challenges this may not the right book for you or your small group.  At the end of the book is a set of discussion questions geared to each chapter for those readers that what to think more about the topic.  In addition, this book offers some activity suggesti…

Carina Nebula and Hope

Thought I’d try out a new program.  It’s the direct result of my trying to lobotomize my computer yesterday.  No details here, much too embarrassing.  The picture depicts where I sent it to though.  And the state it was in when it arrived.  Pretty amazing that I can type this today actually.  Recovery discs are very, very good things.  If you don’t have one…  Nah, not going to go there.  The picture is the Carina Nebula from the NASA site.
It’s a shame we can’t fund them as well as we probably should or that some people think the whole idea is a giant waste.  For me, seeing this sort of picture reminds me that big events are a matter of perspective.  Not to diminish either the triumph or defeat, the joy or sorrow we know on this planet, but that there is more out there.  We need that sort of hope.  Or I do.  Romanticized?  Absolutely and why not?
Hope.  A noun or a verb?  Both or neither.  Whatever it is I know when it’s around and when it isn’t.  I’m just now getting to a place where …