Saturday, May 29, 2010


"A pessimist and an optimist, so much the worse; so much the better." - Jean de La Fontaine, French poet (1621-1695)

"It takes a clever man to turn cynic and a wise man to be clever enough not to." - Fannie Hurst

"Putting off a hard thing makes it impossible." - George Horace Lorimer

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

So somehow I've got to incorporate this as I plant a church. Wow, thanks to the good people at youtube, planting a church is going to be as easy as "just add water." Thanks, Mikaela for the vine.

I guess the last video post ("This is church?") was a rip-off from this movie trailer.

Speaking of movies, last night I watched "Brothers" with Jeff and Ashley Thune, who just moved in with us temporarily before the move to Iowa City here in a few weeks. There's nothing "fun" about that movie, and as it ended, I was thinking... "Hmmm. If I had that 105 minutes back, would I have spent it the same way?"

But as I've thought about it today, that is one of the most powerful movies I've seen in awhile. In a word, I think the movie is about "grace." There is so much to be written on the themes that were brilliantly woven into the story line: family dynamics, father-son issues, jealousy, betrayal, faithfulness, forgiveness, child and adult psychology, anger, war, love and Grace.

The more I reflect on it, the more I realize how much I loved that movie. This is the most trite way I could think to end this post, but it's true: I want to be more like Jesus having seen this movie. More like Grace.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

This is Church?

So we reinvented church and this is what came out...

Thanks, Tim, for the vine on this. It cracked me up.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Book List

I told some guys I've been mentoring I would give them a book list. Fellas, here you go...

1. Mere Christianity (CS Lewis)- If I only had one book next to the Dangerous Book, I'd take this one. Also, read all the Chronicles of Narnia, as they will expand your imagination.
2. Desiring God (John Piper)- This created a Copernican revolution in my theology back in '97.
3. The Knowledge and the Holy and...
4. The Pursuit of God (AW Tozer)- My grandpa Bill used to quote large chunks of Tozer to me. Tozer is in the "mystic" category, but your soul will expand reading Tozer.
5. The Supremacy of God in preaching (Piper)- If you're planning on preaching
6. Working the Angles (Eugene Peterson)- If you're going into ministry, this will remind you of the balance you need.
7. In Harm's Way (Doug Stanton) and Endurance (Alfred Lansing)- got me into historical non-fiction, WW2 history, and challenged me to love adventure, risk, and not giving up.
8. Systematic Theology (Wayne Grudem)- This is a must have resource
9. The Life You've Always Wanted (John Ortberg)- some lighter reading to mix in with the deeper stuff. You'll find this refreshing and helpful as you learn what ingredients go in to life with God. Disciplines of a Godly Man (Kent Hughes) is also good on disciplines.
10. Purity Principle (Randy Alcorn)- most concise and best book on purity
11. How to Read the Bible for All It's Worth (Fee & Stuart)- Bible interpretation 101
12. Let the Nations be Glad (Piper)... the first sentence of the book is worth the price of the book. "Missions is not the chief end of the church, worship is. Missions exists because worship doesn't." Too many people without a heart for the nations are in ministry. This book will help you get off on the right foot. But having taken Perspectives... you already are!
13. Turning Points (Noll)- a primer on church history.
14. Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God and...
15. Knowing God (Packer)- doctrine of God (Theology Proper)
16. Shepherding a Child's Heart (Tripp)- this is for when you "grow up" and have a family. It's the best book on parenting
17. Pilgrim's Progress (Bunyan)- one of the all time best sellers
18. Master Plan of Evangelism (Coleman)

Books I'm ashamed to say I haven't read- but are in the dock:

1. The Cost of Discipleship (Jeff Dodge and Ed Noble will not be happy about this... I'm on it!)
2. Magician's Nephew (last book in the Narnia series... or first book, however you look at it)
3. Confessions (Augustine). I've read it once. I put it on the list because I'm ashamed I haven't read it more than once.
4. Institutes of the Christian Religion (Calvin)- maybe I'll read this in another life
5. The Divine Conspiracy (Dallas Willard)- I'm about half way through. The hardest part about this book is figuring out what not to underline.
6. Anything by Tim Keller (ouch!!!). Reason for God, here we come!

Alright, fellas, in 15 minutes, that's the best I can come up with. I'll add to this list as I think of more. Remember Ecclesiastes 12:11-12, "The words of the wise are like goads, their collected sayings like firmly embedded nails- given by on Shepherd. Be warned, my son, of anything in addition to them. Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body."