stream of consciousness

Here are some things on my mind this Friday:

  • The Jonathan Martin vs. Miami Dolphins scandal is one I’m following with great interest. People that haven’t played sports at a high level or been a part of a fraternity or sorority will always struggle with hazing—while those who endured it typically seek to propagate it. There is a “if I had to go through it, you should have to go through it,” mentality. The white-collar version of it is, “paying your dues.”
  • Both Greeks and sports teams view “brotherhood development” as the aim behind hazing. I have to say, it’s not totally useless in that regard. But, most hazers refuse to admit the feeling of power and control they derive from it, and how that feeling makes them dangerous people when they are hazing others.
  • What happened to Jonathan Martin went far beyond hazing to assault and battery. Nowhere can we see the sickness power and control cultivate like in the Dolphins reaction to the situation. I hope Goodell drops the hammer on them. Not just for allowing it—but for not caring they’ve destroyed a young man’s vocational life and broken down his psyche.
  • To those who say, “I’m against hazing in any form,” may I ask if can we look at the military and say we see no point? There is some of sense comfort we derive from the fact those in the military have been through something—that they are tough enough to go to battle. I believe the Dolphins feel the same way. But, the NFL isn’t the military.
  • What is hazing? Difficulty defining it makes addressing it all the more difficult. Making someone run an extra lap? Raising your voice? Making fun of someone? That’s where this all gets a bit hazy. However, most of us have a sense of when it has definitely crossed the line.
  • Speaking of crossing the line…how do we know when we must confront someone who is causing division rather than just having a dissenting opinion? The answer is in behavior—how are they handling their differing opinion? Are they following biblical ways of communicating? Is there evidence they have the best interests of the Kingdom at heart? Is gossip or slander involved?
  • When was the last time you or your church confronted someone who was tearing down the church or its leaders or sowing division?
  • Churches that can’t do this will get eaten alive by themselves. (Gal. 5:15)
  • Oregon losing to Stanford last night really surprised me. I still think they are the better team—and they’d win 4 out of 5.
  • I’m preaching through Job right now, and really believe the book isn’t first about Job but rather about who God really is and whether Job serves him for who He is.
  • This Sunday I’m preaching through the dialogues between Job and his friends…and I was thinking you all might have better “dumb things people say to people in grief” than I do. I have some I’ve seen/heard. If you have one that sticks out…leave it in the comments or email me off-line.
  • Two productivity tips from David Allen and the GTD system that are so simple and yet so helpful: 1) The 2-minute rule—if you can do it in less than 2 minutes, do it right then; 2) Have a capture tool with you wherever you go to write things down as they come to you.
  • 2 mistakes we make: 1) Pastors dramatically underestimate the ministry capabilities of the Body. 2) The Body underestimates the gifts and calling of pastors. Breaking both sides of this equation down is really important to having a true Body functioning at its fullest.
  • Happy 95th birthday to Billy Graham. You’re a hero to us all.
  • Pancakes or eggs for breakfast? I’ll take the French Toast. However, if I must choose between two goods…give me the pancakes.
  • What’s on your mind this Friday morning?