Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Going green (but not very fast!)

Well, I am now the proud owner of a 49cc moped/scooter. This is what I’m doing to cut down on gas costs for the summer. I live only 1.5 miles from work and this will get me back and forth pretty easily. I can also make some small in town runs. Here are some things (good and bad) to consider if you are thinking of buying one of these bad boys:

1. Huge gas savings! I’m working on trying to figure out exactly how much I get, but you can usually get between 70-90 mpg. I only have a 1.5-gallon gas tank. I’m hoping to fill up every 2-3 weeks, maybe a month?

2. Dork factor. There’s no getting around it, you look like a dork on a moped if you are over the age of 17. How do you improve this? Get a helmet with a full-face tinted shield (this way nobody can see you).

3. Helmet. You need to invest in a good helmet. Even though you aren’t going real fast, serious injuries can still happen.

4. Speed. I’ve had the bad boy up to 41 mph going downhill. Normally I run at 30-35 mph. You can’t go real fast on these things. I live in town, so I don’t really need to go over 35 mph. If you need to go faster, buy a motorcycle.

5. Weather. You don’t really want to be riding these things in a storm.

If you are thinking of fighting the gas war this summer a moped is a great weapon to use to do that. Who knows, maybe if more people start riding them, the dork factor will drop a bit (yeah right!).

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

We read a book in class this last semester entitled The Equipping Pastor by R. Paul Stevens and Phil Collins (not the singer). The book focused on applying systems theory to a church. Systems theory is normally used in family therapy. It focuses on bringing healing to the whole family when problems arise in one person. Why? "The whole is greater than the sum of the parts." (intro, p. xvii). So, I thought I would share a little about why systems theory could benefit the church.

Why is an understanding of “system’s theory” central to the dynamics of how people in a church become mature and productive ministers?

Systems theory is at the core of faith development and productivity in the church because it places the emphasis on the process of the church becoming One Body (Romans 12:5) and sees the whole (the One Body) as more important than the individual parts. Like exercise, systems theory seeks to improve the health of individual parts by improving the health of the whole. Systems theory sees the role of a pastor as an equipper. He or she equips the members of the Body to perform the ministry (Ephesians 4:12). More can be accomplished when the Body reaches out as a whole than when one part tries to go at ministry alone. In order for the church to distance itself from this type of Western individualism, the church must reclaim the interdependence needed for a healthy Body. Systems theory seeks to do just that.

Systems theory focuses on the interdependence among members of the One Body to each other and to God. As a result, relationships are at center stage in systems theory. Three essential components, each related to relationships, are given in chapter one as being parts to a healthy system; wholeness, synergy, and isomorphism (p. 4). The first is wholeness; the idea that the Body is made whole when the distinct parts come together. The second component is synergy. Synergy is the power attained when the different parts work tunefully together. The third is isomorphism. This is about sharing something in common (e.g., vision, mission, purpose); much like the koinonia (fellowship) the early Christians shared after Christ’s resurrection (Acts 2:42). When these components come together in a healthy way, they have the potential to create a vibrant and healthy church.

Your thoughts on systems theory?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


This was a great news story about life after death that ran on ABC Nightly News. N.T. (Tom) Wright, the man being interviewed, is a highly respectable New Testament scholar and theologian for postmoderns.

I thought you might enjoy this video (click the link below).


T <><

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

iBread 1.5

“God’s Word is food for the mind.” - Cyril of Alexandria

The Meal
As we move toward Pentecost Sunday, I hope you can find some time to enjoy the blessings of God's Spirit. Take a moment and feast upon James 1:1. Read these passages very slowly and at least three times.

Table Talk
How does James describe himself in this verse?
Why does he describe himself in this way? What does this tell us about him?
What does that tell us about his relationship with God?
What is your identity?
How do you identify/describe yourself?
How important is identity to you and why?
Where does a person find identity?

Thursday, May 01, 2008

iBread 1.4

“God’s Word is food for the mind.” - Cyril of Alexandria

The Meal
Take a moment and feast upon 1 Corinthians 10:13, 23, 31-32. Read these passages very slowly and at least three times.

Table Talk
- What is the point of each of the passages?
- How do they relate to peer pressure?
- How does God help us in times of temptation or peer pressure?
- How could these verses help you when you are being pressured to do something you don’t want to do?
- Which verse will you commit to memory?