links to 4+ helpful articles

1. What church leaders should be doing

“… focused on Ephesians 4.7-16. … Leaders help others discover their own ministry. … Leaders help the body grow in unity. … Leaders help other Christians become more like Jesus. …”

More.

2. American Exorcism

“… the ‘why now?’ question behind exorcism’s comeback; no evidence exists to suggest that child abuse has increased. The second doorway — an interest in the occult — might offer at least a partial explanation.”

3. Airline etiquette in the not-so-friendly skies

“… we can at least get back some civility by using these tips when taking to the skies. Here’s to happier travel!”

4. Not everyone wants their donations touted on Facebook or plastered on walls

“… while some people may feel good just knowing they helped someone even if no one else knows, others feel that they are a kind, giving person only when others find out about their good acts.”

links to 4 helpful articles/video

1. Psalm 23 Pt 6: Rod and Staff (and Sling) [22 min. video]

“The rod and the staff, they comfort David. And likely the sling too! These are what the shepherd carries for various situations. Learning about these alone is utterly fascinating, especially when you find out how David uses them against lions, bears, and Goliath (which we discuss). But how these translate into what God does for us in in the midst of our deep valleys is where the power lies. And once we understand that, we’ll find comfort, courage, and hope just like David did.”

2. Apocalypse: Unveiling or Invasion

“The genesis of Paul’s apocalyptic–as we see it in Galatians–lies in the apostle’s certainty that God has invaded the present evil age by sending Christ and his Spirit into it. There was a “before,” the time when we were confined, imprisoned; and there is an “after,” the time of our deliverance. And the difference between the two is caused not by an unveiling, but rather by the coming of Christ and his Spirit.”

3. How Ancient Egyptians Moved Huge Stones 4500 Years Ago

“Dr. Waziry described the discovery that it is of a great importance as it is the first time to discover a system to move and transfer blocks from quarries and how the ancient Egyptians lifted the multi tons blocks off coarse ramps during the era of building the Great Pyramid which changes our understanding of how the pyramids were built.”

4. Does giving donors stuff actually raise more money?

“What should nonprofits and donors take away from our study? We conducted this experiment with just one organization, but the preponderance of the evidence from our work and the findings of others suggests that unconditional premiums are not worth it. These trinkets may have been a good idea when they were novel and unusual, a few decades ago. But they are so common now that many donors probably don’t even notice them.”

links: this went thru my mind

Bible study, books, interpretation, preaching, reading & sermon preparation: A Cautionary Word to Pastors About Internet Resources [especially wise advice for all, and insightful for understanding the needs of ministers]

“… there is a reason a lot of the resources online that have to do with the Bible are free. There is some truth to the old dictum ‘you get what you pay for.’ Some of the resources are simply junk, some are so badly out of date and out of touch with the current ministry scene that they are hardly useful, and some of them are so arcane it requires scholarly help to make good use of them. And this brings me to the second point.

“There is a need for critical judgment to select useful online resources that may indeed help one’s ministry. Critical judgment about not only technical scholarly works, but about mid-level works can only be developed over time and with good guidance. … I would stress, for the good of your soul as well as the good of your ministry, that you need to read good books, and I mean read them at a depth level, not superficially cherry picking this quote or that quote …

“What feeds good teaching and good preaching is continuing to feed your head with good resources, and to study them in some depth. You need to set aside more than an hour or two a week for such study and preparation, and the main thing you should do during that time is just read—- not outline sermons or lessons, but read…… read….. read.”

Birth of Christ, genealogy of Jesus & the birth narratives: An Amazing Genealogy of Jesus Infographic (and What It Means for XMas)

“The infographic represents both Matthew and Luke’s genealogies, showing the legal emphasis (in Matthew) meant to prove Jesus’s royal Israelite bloodline, and the biological emphasis (in Luke) traditionally linked to the family genealogy in Mary’s home. The ‘big names’ are given larger placement, with often humorous bits of info. Just a quick scan reveals how diverse, even scandalous, this genealogy really is – including kings and killers, prophets and prostitutes.”

Collection, contribution, donations, electronic giving, mobile giving, money & offering: A Case for Church Mobile Donation

“We are coming close to the time whereby a church not being able to accept online donations would be as bad as a church not being able to accept a check.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, nonviolence & pacifism: No, Dietrich Bonhoeffer Didn’t Try To Kill Adolph Hitler

“… there is no evidence that [Bonhoeffer] was actively involved in planning or attempting to assassinate Hitler– a basic fact accepted by the academy but seemingly missing from common internet discussions on Bonhoeffer.”

Prayer: When We Talk With God

“Surely one of the grandest transfers God has made in my life would be that of prayer.”