Thinking Out Loud

February 28, 2015

Weekend Link List

Filed under: links — Tags: , , , — paulthinkingoutloud @ 5:15 am
...and CBD carries this why exactly? The tag "slightly imperfect" fits well, however.

…and CBD carries this why exactly? The tag “slightly imperfect” fits well, however.

Some great stories for your weekend reading:

The Benefits of Bad Preaching  – “My Evangelical friends just don’t get [liturgy], and so I’m always happy when they join me at Mass to experience it for themselves – although I know what the fallout will often be: Scrunched up faces and raised eyebrows as they suffer through seemingly mindless ritual, rote prayers, and the occasional lousy sermon…Indeed, there’s a benefit to mediocre preaching once in a while, and it’s this: The faithful will be all the more likely to focus on what’s most important in the Mass if they aren’t distracted by the brilliant homily. ‘A preacher may be able to hold the attention of his listeners for a whole hour,’ Pope Francis wrote in Evangelii Gaudium, ‘but in this case his words become more important than the celebration of faith.'”

Growing Up Global – A blog devoted to “communicating across boundaries” asked Third Culture Kids (TCKs) to share their experience, producing a number of responses. She writes, “Our shared history is like a puzzle with pieces scattered all over the globe and very few pieces right beside us. I remember a couple of years ago saying to my husband ‘We can’t keep friendships! There is no one we’ve known longer than x number of years.’ but then we thought about it and realize we have so many long term friends, just very few right around us.” She would like to hear from more TCKs about their experience.

The Problem with Religion – While not actually using the R-word a whole lot, Andy Stanley shifts the discussion to the problem with “the temple model” which he defines as one which “grants extraordinary power to sacred men in sacred places who determine the meaning of sacred texts…The heart of the temple model is this question: what must I do or believe to make things and keep things right between God and me? Because at the end of the day, my religion is all about me.” But if this seems demanding fear not, “In temple religion, you will always find a loophole..” Read a summary of the sermon series which wraps up this weekend, or watch the messages at this dedicated link.

The Christian Edition of #SNL40 – Reframe Media has assembled all of the best religious themed skits from Saturday Night Live in one place so you and Church Lady and Father Guido Sarducci can do your own 40th Anniversary show.

It’s All Greek to Me – While admittedly this article is promoting a particular piece of Bible software, it’s a computer program that doesn’t require you to know Greek or Hebrew, though it’s more helpful if you do. The unique feature of the Phrasing software is that you manipulate the text which “allows you to visually trace a passage’s argument: simply indent to subordinate.” A series of five videos explains the methodology with examples in Hebrew, Greek and (for me) English.

Balancing the Load – She and her husband lead an international orphan-care ministry, but she’s also a mother of nine. “Just the other day, I came home from a trip and I could tell the kids were not amused. They were feeling my two day absence. I sat them down and took the opportunity to tell them about an upcoming trip to another country we had just bought tickets for us to experience as a family. Their eyes lit up and I told them, this isn’t a bribe, I am not trying to get myself off the hook from where I have been, I am just telling you honestly that what mom does sometimes costs us as a family and sometimes benefits us. And that’s how most of life will be.”

Reviewing The NIV Proclamation Bible – “In the summer of 1981, 40 men engaged in a preaching ministry gathered at a center in Surrey for a conference on ‘expository preaching’…the “Proclamation Trust” was born and it is this group that is spearheading the release of this new Bible…Tim Keller calls this a “study Bible” and I suppose that term can be loosely applied to any volume, but for me, when I call something a study Bible it has passage notes. It has tools that allow me to “study” the text built into the Bible. This Bible – as far as the text goes – only has chain reference and textual footnotes. This Bible has no actual textual commentary.”

Teaching Memory Verses to Two-Year Olds – “Can we really expect a 4-year-old to recite the memory verse two hours after he heard it in your small group on Sunday morning? Can we expect a 2-year-old to properly pronounce all of those words so that Mom and Dad understand what she is saying? …We can also expect that parents will need to have the memory verse to take home to review, sing, and move along with the words. It is frustrating to a 3-year-old who is trying very hard to tell Grandma about her verse from church and Grandma just doesn’t quite get it. Some type of written version made available to take or send home solves that problem…”

Publishers Who Can’t Stand the Heat Should Get out of the Kitchen – In a scene eerily similar to last year’s God and the Gay Christian, a Christian publishing house has distanced itself from the gay-sympathetic author by canceling publication of a book that was designed to attract a new generation of readers. Brandan Robertson’s Nomad was scheduled for fall release, but Destiny Image’s Don Nori in a ‘nothing to see here’ response dismisses the idea that the cancellation was anything other than financial. It seems they want the revenues that progressive Christian book buyers can bring, but not the ideas associated with them.

Short takes:

Actual things on the internet:



  1. I’m thinking Church of Christ. Found the app a couple years ago. A few selections were great but without instruments it got boring. Long since deleted. Some of those internet stations have excellent Christian playlists compared to KLOVE for example. Why does so much of Christian radio have tiny playlists and annoying mindless chatter?

    Comment by Paul — March 3, 2015 @ 7:05 am

    • The popular radio formats are tightly controlled. There’s often a theme for an hour which directs the comments, and certain things are said at certain times. Each hour has its own clock which includes slots for music references, personal stories, reference to national news items, etc. The major record companies and stations work in a tight partnership and that’s why you see such a small playlist. Tomorrow’s link list includes a reference to and the first thing you notice on their seven stations is an abundance of things you’ve never heard before.

      Without reference to any specific Christian radio format, this article gives a good perspective on how the broader radio industry functioned in the past:

      Comment by paulthinkingoutloud — March 3, 2015 @ 8:51 am

      • Recently discovered ccm rewound, commercial first three decades of contemporary Christian. Hear lots of great music for the first time. Also last fall a British ministry student launched a year round No novelty songs, secular artists, lots of great English choir. Of course a huge sampling of John Ritter. It’s March and I’m still listening. As I said above I marvel that secular networks with Christian channels have vastly superior playlists and more diverse artists. Poor testimony…..Paul

        Comment by Paul — March 3, 2015 @ 5:18 pm

  2. In above reply typed in commercial free. This kindle frequently changes spelling and even words.

    Comment by Paul — March 3, 2015 @ 5:23 pm

    • Did you mean John Rutter?

      Comment by paulthinkingoutloud — March 3, 2015 @ 6:57 pm

      • Of course. Tough to type on a kindle. John Ritter better known for dreadful sitcoms. Indeed I was saddened by his early death. The Christmas Carol site occasionally interrupts the programming with strongly evangelistic “Nativity Thoughts.”

        Comment by Paul — March 3, 2015 @ 11:46 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Your Response (Value-Added Comments Only)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: