Over the next few weeks, I’m going to be updating the graphics for “Links I like” to add a little variety. Two have been completed, with another three or five to go. Let me know what you think!
Kindle deals for Christian readers
Just a couple of Kindle deals to share today: Found: God’s Will by John MacArthur (free), and Handbook to Wisdom by Kenneth Boa ($1.99). You can also get a free copy of What’s Your Worldview? by James Anderson in exchange for taking a short survey
If you’re a Star Wars fan, anyway. This is intense—a 123 meter long infographic retelling the first Star Wars film. Pretty neat.
On a pop culture theme, I enjoyed the trailer for the next Star Trek movie. This could be a lot of fun (mild language warning):
At age 15 I experienced the prototypical warm-hearted Methodist conversion during a youth retreat. Yet in retrospect this moment ironically marked the beginning of the end of my United Methodism. The interdenominational retreat was hosted in a nearby Lutheran church. My United Methodist pastor didn’t support this Spirit-led revival that led students to confess their sins and trust in Jesus as their Savior. Four years later, as a college student, I returned to my home church in search of financial support for an evangelistic summer mission in California. This same pastor declined and said her theology taught “God helps those who help themselves.” I will never forget, however, the United Methodist women of my home church who filled this gap and hosted a fundraiser meal that more than covered my summer expenses. No period since my conversion has been more instrumental in my spiritual development.
Steven Kryger asks an important question.
It can be difficult, then, to feel rosy about the church’s future when it seems so weak, or even destructive. Yet an hour’s perusal through church history reveals that none of these fears are unique to our time; it’s always been easy to criticize the church because the church has always deserved criticism.
That same hour also shows there is always more to the story than compromise and incompetence. At any point in its history, the church is a case study in the contrast between appearance and reality. Despite all indications to the contrary, and far beyond any expectations, it has flourished.
At any given moment, we are singing subconscious praises to whatever we are desiring—”In this moment, you mean everything.” We are pretty pathetic, when you think about it. One moment we are echoing Dexy’s midnight ode to a person we’re attracted to and in the next to a Five Guys bacon cheeseburger. (Any stress eaters out there? I see that hand.) There are so many things offering so many things. Can you blame us?
Sadly, what some leaders call delegating is really dumping, doing whatever it takes, as quickly as it takes, to get responsibilities off their plate and onto the plates of others. On the other hand, delegating is wise, effective, and loving. Effective delegation spreads responsibilities to others so that the organization can accomplish more while simultaneously developing other leaders.
I became a Christian on July 7, 2015, after a very pleasant adult life of firm atheism. I’ve found myself telling “the story” when people ask me about it—slightly tweaked for my audience, of course. When talking to non-theists, I do a lot of shrugging and “Crazy, right? Nothing has changed, though!” When talking to other Christians, it’s more, “Obviously it’s been very beautiful, and I am utterly changed by it.” But the story has gotten a little away from me in the telling.