this went thru my mind

 

Books: Why Do Old Books Smell? by AbeBooks [2 min. video]

“Walk into a used bookshop and you will encounter the unique aroma of aging books. The smell is loved by some, disliked by others, but where does it come from?”

Benevolence: Early Christian Charity [9 min., 30 sec. video clip of speaker, Dr. John Dickson]

“… an overview from the time of the New Testament up to Constantine.”

Comfort: How Not to Minister to the Hurting by Joe McKeever

“You will not believe what some people say to a bereaved parent or the family member of someone tragically injured.”

Elders meetings: A Noble Task by Tim Woodroof

“We don’t expect much of elders’ meetings anymore. We do not attend with the anticipation that God’s Spirit will show up or lives will be transformed or the gates of hell might quiver and fall because we meet. … To be fair, we come by this lack of imagination honestly. We’ve learned to be modest in our hopes.”

Faith & politics: “Hide It Under a Bushel? Yes!” by Bryan Dyer

“… American Christians should keep faith hidden in the public sphere in order to preserve that identity’s integrity. If Christian identity is just another brand loyalty, then it is pointless.”

Graciousness: Graciousness: Daring to Live a Graceful Life by Jim Martin

“… the final act of grace is graciousness.”

Groups: Six Tips for Keeping New Small Groups Healthy by Brett Eastman

“Here are six tips for keeping new small groups healthy so they can make the impact God wants …”

Ignorance: Amazing Grace: Is Ignorance of God’s Will an Excuse? by Jay Guin

“… all my life, Church of Christ preachers have argued that ignorance of the law is no excuse. I’m a lawyer. And ignorance is not an excuse – in civil court. But when we begin applying American legal principles to Christianity, well, we just might be legalists.”

Internet: Why One in Five U.S. Adults Doesn’t Use the Internet by Amy Gahran

“… one in five U.S. adults still does not use the Internet at all …”

Meetings: A Problem-Free Meeting by Dan Bouchelle

“I think every church should periodically have a problem-free meeting where we simply assess our gifts and strengths and then use the results as a basis to inform our ministry plans. What has God given us? What are we able to do well? How do we steward these strengths well in our context? We would doubtlessly be more effective in our service if we focused on these matter rather than spend all our time trying to shore up our weaknesses. Let’s change the self-talk of our churches by focusing on God’s power in us rather than our weaknesses.”

Poverty: “David Lipscomb and the Poor” (parts 1 & 2)

* “The sealing testimony in behalf of Jesus Christ being the Son of God is his own estimation, as divine to the disciples of John, was, ‘The poor have the gospel preached to them.” The world to-day needs this same sealing testimony, that it may believe that, Jesus is the Son of God. Every preacher that pretendedly, in the name of Jesus Christ, seeks the rich and the learned and the fashionable to preach to, instead of the poor and simple-hearted and unpretending, by that course nullifies the power of the great truth, that Jesus is the anointed one that was to come into the world to save the world. Such a preacher is no co-laborer with God; no true minister of Christ, but a servant of the wicked one in the livery of Heaven.”

* “Do we create spaces, relationships and opportunities where the poor feel welcome? Given our upper middle class buildings and fashionable dress and expensive stuff, it is little wonder that the poor are generally uncomfortable.”

Unchurched Christians: Better Conversations Between Churched and Un-churched Christians by Rachel Held-Evans

“While too many among the ‘churched’ seem unwilling to change, too many among the ‘un-churched’ seem unwilling to compromise.”

this went thru my mind

 

Fear: Fearful Unto Death by Wade Hodges

“What do you do with a gospel that makes old men and women fearful unto death? I say you call it false and cast it into the depths of hell, where it belongs and where there is plenty of room for it.”

Gasoline prices: Gas Prices — How Do They Work?

“Many stand accused, including oil companies, the president, Congress, and speculators on Wall Street. Others assume that the earth is just running out of oil. The reality, economists say, is fairly simple.”

Humor: Marginalized

“Oh, my hand.”

Illustrations: Why “The Bible is our Instruction Manual” is the Worst Metaphor in the History of the World by Leslie Keeney

“While this worldview has been very successful at creating a comfortable, well-fed society, it has the added advantage of being simple. … The problem with this metaphor, however, is that it just doesn’t work.”

Jimmy Carter: President Jimmy Carter Authors New Bible Book, Answers Hard Biblical Questions

“Jimmy Carter served as the 39th president of the United States, founded the Carter Center and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. President Carter is also a Sunday School teacher and has followed that avocation since his earliest years. In this interview, HuffPost’s Senior Religion Editor Paul Brandeis Raushenbush spoke to President Carter by phone about the hardest questions presented in the Bible: from gays, science, the role of women, slavery passages and more.”

Leadership: 20 Essential TED Talks for Future Leaders

“… here we’ve collected some of the best videos for anyone, young or old, hoping to hone their leadership abilities.”

Life: The Map & the Plan by Jon Acuff

“I want a plan. I want a 10-year vision with details and steps and instructions. I want to map out the next 40 years of my life and know exactly where I am going and how I am going to get there. And every time I pray about that desire, every time I ask God for that, his answer is really simple: “No.” … You don’t need a perfect map for your life. You’ve already got a perfect Messiah. And, though it feels impossible to believe sometimes and doesn’t match your expectations, he’s got a plan more wondrous than you can even imagine.”

Meetings: How to Run an Elders’ Meeting by Andrew Davis

“By conduct, I mean how the meeting should be conducted, both practically and in submission to the Spirit of God.”

Ministry: The Subtle Art of Sabotaging A Pastor by Jared Wilson

“Suggest to your client that he works for the people, not the Enemy. This will not be a hard sell as they are faces he sees every day. Remind him who pays his salary. The quicker you can get your patient to see himself as a professional, as an employee, the better.”

Productivity: The Magic of Doing One Thing at a Time by Tony Schwartz

“Why is it that between 25% and 50% of people report feeling overwhelmed or burned out at work? It’s not just the number of hours we’re working, but also the fact that we spend too many continuous hours juggling too many things at the same time.”

War: A War Hero Returns Home, 40 Years Later by John Blake

“… some memories may always linger. Perhaps no soldier really gets over war.”