I’m not a monster, Tom… well, technically I am.

I fear it’s likely to be a pretty sporadic summer in terms of blog updates, until I get into some new routines, but here’s a round-up covering pretty much the last month…

Fred Clark on Mutuality Week and the Burden of Proof (make sure to follow the links to see some of the postings from Rachel Held Evan’s Week of Mutuality – there is some good stuff in there; although it is rather depressing that we are even still debating these topics related to gender inclusion in the life of the church).

Also from Fred Clark: I Never, Leviticus Edition

The Real Generation Gap – how Baby Boomers have been on the receiving end of government assistance all of their lives. Fascinating article which states:

“There are a lot of incredible things boomers have done for our country, and I admire and learn from many of them. But, history reveals a gaping leadership and responsibility gap between boomers and their parents. Somehow, some way, the shared generational value of baby boomers’ parents — that of civic investment and “paying it forward” through taxes and good governance — was not transferred to their children, who now, paradoxically, seem to want less government and less taxes, despite having spent the majority of their lives depending on big government and tax revenue.”

Roger Olson: What Does “Inerrancy” Actually Do?

Seth Godin: How to Succeed

Mark Engler: Keep Your Government Hands Off My Welfare State

Dan Dick: Cheapening the Church

LaRae Quy: 3 Ways to Find the Truth About Yourself

Wil Wheaton: Famous Novelists on Symbolism in Their Work and Weather it was Intentional

Jamie the Very Worst Missionary: Who Do You Think You Aren’t

Jonathan Coulton: Emily and David – I think Jonathan has some great insight into the future of intellectual property as it relates to music and far beyond. The issues are simply going to be much more complex in the years to come, but instead of fighting it, we need to find ways to embrace and adapt to the coming changes.

Lifehacker: Top 10 Ways to Upgrade Your Music Listening Experience

Also, music related, a new Looper album is apparently in the works. I know 99% of you who read this have no idea who Looper is, but Up a Tree is an amazing little album that 15 years later I still enjoy.

Geek Dad: These Lego Birds Aren’t Angry, Just Geeky (and pretty awesome!)

Scot McKnight: Baptists Chasing Methodists – and not in some game of denominational tag. The article talks about how, in the Southern Baptist Convention they are starting to see declines that parallel what the United Methodist Church has been experiencing over the last 40 years. Sometimes it seems like some in the UMC believe adopting a “theological purity” like the SBC would be the answer to all our problems, yet this trend shows that the issues surrounding membership and attendance are greater than notions of theological orthodoxy.

Semi-related (but not intentionally), Jeremy Smith asks,  Is the UMC the Rebellion or the Empire?

Also semi-related the Lewis Center Update points to the trends in the 2010 Religion Census Update

Shannon Karafanda: Church Hoarding. Good reflection about the propensity of churches to collect “stuff” that can never be recycled or thrown out, which then keeps us from moving forward in our mission. A good friend will be serving a new church this week and that is item #1 on his agenda – getting rid of all this unnecessary “stuff” that is crowding the hallways and filling the classrooms that has outlived it’s usefulness and is a power symbol for how the church has been stuck for some time.

Here’s Looper. I prefer the album version of this song to the one in the video, but it’s still good…

And we’ll do one more to give Jonathan Coulton some love too… I may have posted a version of this one before – an ode to zombies and business culture – Re: Your Brains: