the presidential election, prayer & Miroslav Volf


Miroslav Volf has been posting a series of status updates on his Facebook page laying out  (1) “a concern,” (2) a “value,” (3) a “rationale,” (4) the “debate,” and (5) “a question” for this year’s U.S. presidential candidates. If you plan to vote, you should read these posts. If you don’t plan to vote, you should read them to help you as you pray for the leaders of the world’s nations.

These same posts will likely appear in the (free) fall issue of Yale Divinity School’s publication Reflections.

If you’re unfamiliar with Volf, here’s a link to a fine interview of Volf conducted by Krista Tippett back in 2004 that will help you appreciate the man. His thoughts on enemies, forgiveness, nonviolence, and pacifism are particularly insightful and powerful.

this went thru my mind


Age & generations: Your Twenties Matter

“What if we – especially the church – recognized the value and importance of young adults in their twenties and put together a process to help them maximize the opportunities you  have in your twenties (and never have again in your life)?”

Archaeology: Have the Tombs of the Kings of Judah Been Found?: A Response An Answer to Hershel Shanks’s Question by Fr. Riccardo Lufrani

“In a 1987 issue of BAR, Hershel Shanks presented a summary of Amos Kloner’s 1986 article … ‘Have the Tombs of the Kings of Judah Been Found?’ … I hope to answer his question.”

Church attendance: Five Reasons Why You Need To Attend Church (Hebrews 10:22-25) by Bob Russell

“Why should followers of Christ participate in weekly worship services?”

Church leadership: Polity Model Comparison by Tim Woodroof

“Our traditional model of elder-led churches fails the “sniff test” for effective church leadership not because there is something wrong with elders. I love elders. I appreciate their work and dedication. I believe in their leadership. Their loving, careful, prayerful guidance of churches is necessary. May their tribe increase. What’s flawed is the polity model itself. Any polity model that asserts only elders derive spiritual authority from Christ, draws elders away from the maturing goal that is the raison d’être of church leadership, prevents shared leadership responsibilities among a variety of roles, ignores the need for different gifts and capabilities for effective leadership, and lacks any mechanism for meaningful accountability of leaders is—at the least—a different polity model than is suggested by Ephesians 4:11ff and what is known of the early church.”

Communication: How to Pitch Anything in 15 Seconds

“A message map is the visual display of your idea on one page. It is a powerful and tool that should be a part of your communication arsenal. Building a message map can help you pitch anything (a product, service, company, or idea) in as little as 15 seconds. Here is the three-step process to using a message map to build a winning pitch.”

Culture & faith: Shopping in the Walmart of Belief  by Richard Beck

“What we see around us isn’t a binary choice between faith and unfaith. Rather, we face choices amongst faiths, unbelief being one choice amongst these. What characterizes modernity is the radical range of choices now in front of us, a marketplace of beliefs and ideologies.”

Preachers: Pastors Who Didn’t Make the Cut by Ron Edmonson

“Pastors, just so you are reminded, most (actually all…but for my self-righteous friends I’ll say most) of us wouldn’t qualify for any position in the church if it weren’t for grace!”

word for the weak: week forty


Following is this week’s reading schedule and memory verse in MoSt Church‘s 2012 Uncommon Truth for Common People Bible reading project. The page numbers correspond to the Daily Companion Bible (DCB). Each week’s theme and Scriptures are discussed in our Wednesday night auditorium class.

• Mon., Oct. 1 – Psalm 24.1-5; Matthew 5.5; 1 Timothy 1.5; James 3.17 (p. 236)

• Tues., Oct. 2 – Ephesians 4.17-5.6 (p. 237)

• Wed., Oct. 3 – Psalm 51.7-10; Malachi 3.1-6 (p. 238)

• Thur., Oct. 4 – Psalm 119.1-16 (p. 239)

• Fri., Oct. 5 – Galatians 5.16-26 (p. 240)

This week’s memory verse is: “Who can ascend the Lord’s mountain? Who can stand in his holy sanctuary? Only the one with clean hands and a pure heart …” (Psalm 24.3-4a)