Knitting A New Innocence

Bratz Doll 02Sonia Singh is a mother and artist from Tasmania, off the southeastern tip of Australia.  Sonia is also an artist that rescues second-hand Bratz dolls.  She calls her new creations “Tree Change Dolls” because of the radically different look she gives the formerly sexualized dolls. Continue Reading »

10 Books About Church

Books 07I am a church planter working with a nascent church that targets Millennials and folks who have given up on church.  Most of my pastoral life has been spent (over 40 years) in pretty traditional churches that failed in their calling to be outposts rather than fortresses.  My last 10-15 years have been occupied with reading books relating to the matter of how to go about being the church in this age.  Some of them have been critiques of the church such as unChristian by Kinnaman and Lyons.  This book results from research done among Millennials and their assessment of churches today, particularly Evangelicals.

Two statistics are startling to me and have caused me to want to think more and more deeply about what church should look like in this part of the 21st century.  In the 2010 census it was found that 20% of respondents selected “none” in answer to the question, “What is your religious preference?”  “None” has never been that high in previous censuses.  Additionally researchers have begun looking at another group never watched called the “Dones.”  This group has not left God.  On the contrary, they are full of faith.  But they are “done” with church.  The fact that this group is new and growing is proof that we need to put our “pay attention” hats on.

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Come Out of Him

Unclean SpiritA friend of mine called me at my office and warned, “Arthur has just left my office, and he is mad.  He’s coming to your office.  You’d be well advised to leave.”

Arthur was our church’s resident crazy man.  He was unemployable, quirky, and creepy.  His long suffering wife put up with his craziness to the great amazement of all of us who knew them.

I hurriedly left my office and drove toward my home where I was going to put my car, out of sight, into the garage.  But in my rearview mirror appeared Arthur, clearly following me home.  I took a longer route and eventually lost him.  Several minutes later the door bell rang. Continue Reading »

In the Wilderness

BWCAOur canoe trip began from our outfitter’s camp near Ely, Minnesota.  A canoe, two fishing poles, and three backpacks sat on the boat dock, along with our waterproof map.  After my son and I gave our canoe a test spin, we put the packs into the canoe and slipped off into the BWCA.  Our map had a disclaimer in the lower right corner, ‘Not for navigation purposes.”

That’s not a very comforting realization – “not for navigation purposes” – because the Boundary Waters Canoe Area is millions of acres of pristine wilderness.  It is only trees and water as far as the eye can see, and there are no convenient road signs to direct you.  Portages from one body of water to another are often obscured or hidden by the distant tree line, and we could only steer to approximately where we thought the path would be.
Continue Reading »

Granddad’s Garden

Trailer of manureI did not expect the reverie that overwhelmed me

As I walked up to the lovely Bear Creek home.

It was dignified, expensive, and well-coiffed

Much too nice for the smell of manure that greeted me

As two workers tilled the natural fertilizer into flower beds. Continue Reading »

In this week’s LifeSpring Currents – an interesting interview with Alice Cooper about his decision to be a Jesus follower. http://ht.ly/GOVf9

REAL Good News

ArromanchesArromanches-les-Bains is a town in the Normandy region of northwest France.  It is most remembered for the role that it played in the D-Day invasion and the liberation of Europe.

After the D-Day invasion the Allies assembled an artificial harbor at Arromanches, including a floating roadway that allowed ships to off load supplies directly to the roadway.  It was from this harbor that supplies and troupes were unloaded to support the invasion – to the tune of 9,000 tons of material every day.

The port, that did not exist before D-Day June 6, was commissioned on June 14, 1944 – a feat of Allied ingenuity and hard work.  The site of the first trucks rumbling off the floating roadway into the narrow lanes of Normandy was a blessed site to the French who had seen the Germans goose-stepping through their towns.  Continue Reading »

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