Friday Stream of Consciousness – 68

stream of consciousness

Here are some things on my mind this Friday morning:

  • Maggie Smith says she’s never seen Downton Abbey? Say what?
  • Rob Bell has a new book coming out. Those of you read this blog for a while know I wasn’t a fan of Love Wins, though I think Rob is one of the finest communicators I’ve ever seen. His new book is entitled, What we Talk About When We Talk About God. It’s due out on March 12.
  • So, Valentine’s Day was yesterday. How’d it go? It’s been great so far…and we’ve decided to go out tonight as well to celebrate.
  • Having said that, I remember how much Valentine’s Day stunk when I was single. Why does the married, traditional family come to find first when it comes to these things?
  • How many of these romantic cruises turned Survivor deals will it take for me to swear them off? A lot. I’ve never been on an overnight cruise and would love to do it. I’ll just avoid Carnival. It’s always Carnival for some reason.
  • The Christopher Dorner incident has finally come to an end. Those who cheered him on (thankful not many) remind me of those who cheered OJ on. I watched OJ drive by to cheers on the freeway that day…live…not on TV. In an odd way, I could get that one. I can’t get the pro-Dorner fans. We’re talking multiple homicides, people, not a car chase. I also watched people cheer the rioters in 1992. Also not funny. 53 people were killed and thousands were injured–let alone the property damage. With full acknowledgment of the issues causing the “fight the power” impulse, what makes people cheer mass murder?
  • If the Christopher Dorner incident wasn’t enough to make Southern Californians think the Lord’s return must be drawing near, check out the NBA’s Pacific Division standings, where the Lakers trail the Clippers in the standing by 13 games after receiving another beatdown by the Clips last night. Billy Crystal must be thrilled.
  • 2 plugs of things I think will bless your ministry:
  • 1 for the National Preaching Summit in Indianapolis March 11-12. I love this event and have gone before as a non-speaker. It’s all about practical preaching tools. Randy Harris, Rick Stedman, Jack Cottrell, Mark Moore, myself, and a few others will be there. I hope you can make it.
  • 2nd plug is for the Breaking Through Imaginative Gridlock leadership experience through Leadership Network’s Leadia app. Download the free Leadia app for iOS (iPad or iPhone), then you can purchase the experience for five bucks. It includes several teaching videos and nearly 10,000 words of text to help you get past the hurdles of “ministry block.”
  • The “Church’s” chronic anxiety is demonstrated in our increasing ability to differentiate ourselves. Why do we feel like we need to change what we believe because someone doesn’t like it? As long as we’re standing on solid ground, we ought to stand firm in our convictions. Rather than…
  • Reinterpret the Bible, sell out, or conform simply to what others want us to become. Unless those “others” are the Father, Son, and Spirit–let’s listen and learn–but stand firm where we need to.
  • Whenever I hear even well-informed church leaders talk about what “young people” want, I pause for three reasons. First, young people aren’t monolithic. Second, what they say they want doesn’t matter as much as what their actions tell us. Third, because I know a call to change the church for the sake of the youngsters is imminent. As you know, I’m all for relevancy, but let’s take care not to get into the business of changing the core of the church’s mission or message for ANY interest/age group. The edges? The expressions? The methods? Sure to all of it. Not the core. That stays.
  • Also, why do we assume the reason younger people leave the church has to do with the church, rather than family/societal factors–where they spend most of their time and upbringing? It would seem at least giving that a nod would be a good idea as we sort all of this out.
  • If in fact, for instance, young people defect from the “church” (interesting term unto itself the way it’s being used) because of the church’s perceived lack of concern for social justice or views on homosexuality (to single out but one assertion)–if it’s just that, why aren’t they flocking to Anglican churches, mainline denominations, or United Churches of Christ?
  • Having said that, churches need to really invest themselves in the spiritual formation of the young.
  • I pulled my hamstring running the bases this week. Booooooo.
  • I saw Marco Rubio’s sip of water after the fact. It was kind of funny to me. The look on his face reminded me of a boxer who takes a sip in the corner without ever taking his eyes off his opponent. I think, if anything, it will help him long term, because now everyone knows who he is–for good or ill.
  • I could really use some help doing a 301 redirect for the blog. If you’re capable or know someone who is, I could really use the help.
  • In honor of pitchers and catchers reporting this week and the Pope retiring, I give you this video of Pope John Paul II taking batting practice–for real. Enjoy, and have a blessed weekend.

Dr. Tim Spivey is Pastor of New Vintage Church in Escondido, California. He is the author of numerous articles and one book, "Jesus: The Powerful Servant." A sought after speaker for events, Tim also serves as Adjunct Professor of Religion at Pepperdine University. Tim serves as a church consultant, and his writings are featured on numerous websites, including:, Church Executive magazine, Faith Village, Sermon Central, and Giving Rocket.

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