this week’s round-up (august 19)

Jeremy Smith on Outsourcing the Message – Jeremy brings up some good points about something I’ve been interested in – using video streaming to bring sermons to remote congregations. While I’ve been generally in favor of at least exploring or experimenting with the possibilities, and how it can be a way to support small membership and rural congregations that might otherwise lack regular preaching (especially as the number of active clergy drops and the associated personnel costs rise), I appreciate Jeremy’s critique of how it undervalues contextual, community based messages and undermines leadership development. Good stuff to consider.

Bill Hybels responds to Starbuck’s ceo withdrawing from Willow Creek’s Leadership Summit. Regardless of what you might think of Willow Creek or the “controversy” that surrounded this, I think Hybels response is excellent; he addressed it with a lot of grace… and actually made me pick up Howard Schultz’s book Onward when I saw it at the library this week. (I’m only about 1/3 of the way into the book, but already agree with Hybels that it is excellent).

Roger Olson on Process Theology – it’s interesting in that I’ve always considered myself in or near the process theology “camp” , but based on Olson’s definition, I’m not (because I don’t see God and the world as being ontologically interdependent). I also enjoyed Olson’s post on Something Protestants should borrow from Catholics.

Four signs you are becoming an irrelevant church leader.

Fred Clark on Is Rick Perry a ‘sucker’ or is he just lying, unlike Fred I am likely to give the benefit of the doubt and believe that most politicians err on the side of stupid rather than malicious, but I always appreciate Fred’s analysis. Also from Fred on the theme of truth telling, this time from the pulpit: Glurge and Ghost Stories I don’t think I’ve ever been as egregious of the violations Fred cites – I’ve never tried to sell another’s story as my own, and there have been a couple cases where I have tried to fact-check or explain a sermon illustration that falls more into the “metaphor” rather than “history” category, but I can see where it is an easy trap to fall into.

Top 10 Tips for Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse. Always good information to know.

I’m falling in love with Spotify – it’s a great site for finding and listening to music, new and old, with some great social networking features. Their music catalogue is pretty deep allowing me to reconnect with music I used to have on cassettes that have been lost though the ages (and I’ve never managed to replace on CD or MP3); The Sundays are one of those bands – Reading, Writing & Arithmetic – was a big part of my soundtrack in the summer of 1990: