1. Ravi Zac is always worth listening to. His essay in 'Indelible Ink' led me to 'Why Revival Tarries' for which is a book I will be forever grateful for.
2. 'Jesus continued' is being eaten up one chapter at a time. I appreciated this Kenneth Latourette observation:
'The chief agents in the expansion of Christianity appear not to have been those who made it a profession or a major part of their occupation, but men and women who earned their livlihood in some purely secular manner and spoke of their faith to those whom they met in this natural fashion.'
3. A pal is over in England from NZ and is connecting with the 3DM movement that started in Sheffield. As I sat on a bench with my lovely friend I asked him to sum it all up for me. He told me the big idea is discipleship really boils down to just two questions:
a. What is God saying to you?
b. What are you going to do about it?
For more on this you might like to get hold of Mike Breen's material on 'Huddles'. As an aside, Steve Croft, the Bishop of Sheffield, has just been appointed to Oxford. which is tremendous news. The wind bloweth anew in the C of E ......I pray it blows over Woolwich too for that appointment.
4. I am preaching and thinking about about the link between leadership, risks and prayer on Sunday and am musing a lot about quail. Also, here's a quote I am mulling on:
'You cannot build God's reputation if you aren't willing to risk yours' The Circle Maker, Page 48
5. A conversation between Tim Keller, Michael Horton and Alan Hirsch is worth listening to.
Keller describes in particular how the open-and-affirming movement claims not to threaten the gospel but actually redefines the Christian narrative according to expressive individualism. Identity in this misunderstood gospel is found through self-affirmation and self-assertion, not self-denial. But according to the biblical gospel, we lose ourselves in order to find ourselves in serving God and others.
6. I am LOVING the slowcooker and am chewing on its lessons for discipleship. My NZ pal recommended 'Slow church' to me.
7. I had a discussion with someone recently about what my view on tattoos is. I am not sure I had a view other than my knowledge of one verse in Leviticus and I have since come across this.
8. My one chapter at a time plan includes reading 'Activate: an entirely new approach to small groups' which a friend lent me. This is one I am pondering:
'Conventional wisdom: Small groups are a place where intimate relationships are formed
Reality: Small groups are a place where new friendships are formed' [Page19]'
I wonder how it changes our thinking to think of groups as primarily places of friendship?
9. Mark Howell's blog has been a blessing and I enjoyed 'Books that have shaped me'. The Emery White book 'Rise of the nones' caught my eye and went on the list.
10. One quote from this Rob Bell film called Resurrection stuck with me:
'It's easy to be cynical'
Indeed it is.