2 Days with Rob Bell part 4

This is part four of a whole series of posts I’m doing on my trip to go hear Rob Bell in February 2014. If you want, you can start at the first post.

While at the Rob Bell 2 Days event he made mention of the unique loneliness that leaders experience. This isn’t just a pastor issue either, it’s an issue for anyone who leads an organization. It is a strange issue for pastors though. When I was a supporting pastor, if I complained to my friends about my boss, I would be bad talking their pastor and undercutting all sorts of trust. So there’s a strangeness to the vocational pastoral role that’s difficult to navigate.

It makes me think there should be some training for this – like somewhere along in seminary they drop you off in the woods and you have to live by yourself for a month. It would be great training, and it would weed out the ranks in a hilarious way. So this got me thinking of other great classes pastors could use in Seminary:

  • Speaking in Alliteration: The very best preachers always alliterate and have 3 points at a time. Even when asking questions in this seminary class it will be useful to practice and show how smart you are. You were in bible quizzing for crying out loud, let everybody stand in awe at your knowledge of obscure Scriptures.
  • Mediocre Musicianship: Since you own an acoustic guitar, you should probably play it. After all, there’s likely not any good musicians in your church, so you should hold that stage as long as possible. Also included, planning services where the pastor never has to leave the stage.
  • Sporting Illustrations in Preaching: It’s important to be narrow minded and only pull illustrations from sports – preferably college football or NASCAR. God forbid an illustration from art or music or some other aspect of life. Optional seminar on how much people love it when you scold them for cheering at football but not at your church services.
  • Navigating Loneliness: With a special emphasis on woodland survival and a special project involving the ability to stop whining and remember what’s what.
  • Ancient Languages: Sure the Bible was written with Hebrew and Aramaic and Greek, but this class will take you back to the very earliest languages using caveman grunts and hand gestures to find the real original meaning. Class will focus on using “nuances” in original languages to change the meaning of a passage to match whatever topic you want to preach on.
  • Preaching when sick: Any dummy can preach a good 25 minutes when they are solid and healthy. In this class participants will be exposed to near-lethal viruses and still need to give a legible message. Emphasis on maintaining balance during closed-eyes praying and medications which will not induce speaking in tongues.




Javerbaum, The Last Testament

David Javerbaum is the former head writer of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and has co-authored both of the books Stewart released… so he’s funny, very funny, and tends to follow things down trails looking to see if there is some more funny to be found.

This book, The Last Testament: A Memoir by God, fits right in line with what you expect. Its an imagined additional testament from God, giving a behind the scenes look at what God has been doing and how he thinks its going so far. Like other products from The Daily Show family, it’s a little longer than it needs to be, but it’s still really funny.

If you can handle someone poking fun at your orthodoxy, this book will give some laughs. I like to read unbelievers’ comedy about God because it shows me connection points in our culture and helps me understand others’ viewpoints… the laughs then, are a bonus.

Check it out if you want; if you see it on the shelf be sure to at least pick it up and enjoy the center of the book illustrations, pure comedy gold.


MMC – September 8, 2009

weekend in review: Had a fantastic weekend.  Lots of different things are coming online really quickly for The Grove.  I’m really amped.  Lots of people are participating in BIG ways.

on my list this week: Tons.  All the little details are not only having to be done, but they are having to be created.  At the end of every day I dream of when The Grove is up and running.  I also told someone this week that the next time a pastor whines to me about anything I’m going to ask him if his church owns a building.  If the answer is yes

current books: Surprised by Hope, by NT Wright. I’m also going to do a bunch more of reading through the message this week.

current writing: sermons, systems and emails. We’re trying to have written down everything we are doing so that it goes smoothly.

culture that’s caught me: People are going hognuts over the president.  As a non-citizen, I think I don’t get as passionate about it all.  It is interesting to see how comedy can unite people though.  People for the preseident and against him are both laughing at this video.  It’s great.

how i’m feeling about this week: my heart is racing because of the preview this weekend and I have a headache from tearing up this morning when I dropped off LJ.  It’s going to be such an aawesome week.

quote for the week: “Or did I?”, “Or am I?” – Kevin Jonas

running report: none. But I will someday…

The antiChelsea

Chelsea is my friend who hates math more than anyone. So this video of Arthur Benjamin, the mathemagician, at TED is special just for her.

Also, I must give props to WordPress and TED for getting together and allowing us wordpress users to embed TED talks. Now, I’ll go back and delete my post where I whined about it.

Clips for the International Audience

I can’t find the calculator sketch from SNL, but here’s the great clips on the Canadian government from The Daily Show. Possibly causing my wife to wake up from her sleep because I was laughing so much. I can just do links, because embedding is disabled.

Provinces in Peril

Royalties for the Royals

And here’s a great video for all the Americans here:

Tuesday Morning Check-In December 9, 2008

I failed to put up my monday morning check in, or any posts last week at all because I was in awe of the Canadian political process and how things are going there.  So, now that parliament has been suspended for 50ish days, life can return to normal.

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weekend in review: Saturday morning I participated in our church’s strategic leadership team meetings.  We’ve come up with values and a mission statement for our church.  I know you want to hear it here first, but you’ll have to wait for the big roll out in the new year.  Then Saturday night we went to the Williams’ annual Christmas Kegger (There’s never a keg though, so it’s an odd name.  It’s also odd that I’d the only one who calls it the Christmas Kegger, everyone else says Christmas party.  oh well, tomatoe, potatoe). Then on Sunday I practiced with the new basketball team.  I’m sore all over.

on my list this week: We are doing  a couple days of strategic staff planning this week.  Plus I’m coaching a basketball team again this year.  I really love coaching, even though I’m sure I’m not that good at it.  It’s fun just to be at the BnG club and see all the kids hanging out there.  Then, this weekend our church services are invaded by miniature people.  We call it the Children’s Musical.  Again, no kegs.

current books: Starting Purpose Driven Churches by Sylvia.  still.  But I am closer to finishing.

current writing: proposal stuff for the church

culture that’s caught me: The funniest sketch of the year on SNl was this weekend.

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how i’m feeling about this week: Good week.  Batman is coming out.

Quote for the week: “Church planting is ideal for the manic depressive” ~Nadia Bolz-Weber

Running Report: I did 5K straight, with no walking.  It was hard.  Then I ran around with the basketball team.  Sprinting is hard too.

Christmas Choir Ideas

Our church doesn’t normally have a choir, but some peeps put one together for Christmas.  Here’s some ideas I would suggest for songs: