Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Closeness to God

I don't have much time to post but I couldn't not share a few links I've enjoyed recently:

1. This first link is of a guy named Rich Mullins. His gentleness, wisdom, passion... drips from every word. If you're in a rush, skip ahead to around 5:05 to hear some really profound thoughts on closeness to God. But if you have the time listen to the whole clip, it's worth it (there's even a couple thoughts on the benefits of being single!).

2. This next video is of a completely different type. If you're not familiar with The Emphatics, it's basically just my family's video log which, among other things, tries to remind people that it's worth finding passion, humor, and joy in life.

My brother's emo post makes me so proud of him. :-)

3. Hank Green is by far my favorite vlogger. In this particular clip he defends nerd awesomeness. I realize it's strange to see me posting this clip because nothing about my life is at all nerdy or dorky... ...

but enjoy regardless.

4. Classical music inspired stand-up comedy, anyone?

5. Steve Harvey introduces Jesus. And I'm not going to lie, it's pretty awesome.

Monday, July 20, 2009

If it's good enough for John Piper...

... it's good enough for me. :-P

I have been given a ridiculous amount of flack for joining twitter. Most of the teasing is done pseudo-light-heartedly with messages ranging from "It's just a big waste of time," to, "the only people who twitter are completely self-absorbed."


So I thought I would copy-paste an article John Piper wrote about his own twitter account:

Why and How I Am Tweeting
By John Piper June 3, 2009

I see two kinds of response to social Internet media like blogging, MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, and others.

One says: These media tend to shorten attention spans, weaken discursive reasoning, lure people away from Scripture and prayer, disembody relationships, feed the fires of narcissism, cater to the craving for attention, fill the world with drivel, shrink the soul’s capacity for greatness, and make us second-handers who comment on life when we ought to be living it. So boycott them and write books (not blogs) about the problem.

The other response says: Yes, there is truth in all of that, but instead of boycotting, try to fill these media with as much provocative, reasonable, Bible-saturated, prayerful, relational, Christ-exalting, truth-driven, serious, creative pointers to true greatness as you can.

Together with the team at Desiring God, I lean toward response #2. “Lean” is different from “leap.” We are aware that the medium tends to shape the message. This has been true, more or less, with every new medium that has come along—speech, drawing, handwriting, print, books, magazines, newspapers, tracts, 16mm home movies, flannel-graph, Cinerama, movies, Gospel Blimps, TV, radio, cassette tapes, 8-Tracks, blackboards, whiteboards, overhead projection, PowerPoint, skits, drama, banners, CDs, MP3s, sky-writing, video, texting, blogging, tweeting, Mina-Bird-training, etc.

Dangers, dangers everywhere. Yes. But it seems to us that aggressive efforts to saturate a media with the supremacy of God, the truth of Scripture, the glory of Christ, the joy of the gospel, the insanity of sin, and the radical nature of Christian living is a good choice for some Christians. Not all. Everyone should abstain from some of these media. For example, we don’t have a television.

That’s my general disposition toward media.

Now what about Twitter? I find Twitter to be a kind of taunt: “Okay, truth-lover, see what you can do with 140 characters! You say your mission is to spread a passion for the supremacy of God in all things! Well, this is one of those ‘all things.’ Can you magnify Christ with this thimble-full of letters?”

To which I respond:

The sovereign Lord of the earth and sky
Puts camels through a needle’s eye.
And if his wisdom see it mete,
He will put worlds inside a tweet.

So I am not inclined to tweet that at 10AM the cat pulled the curtains down. But it might remind me that the Lion of Judah will roll up the heavens like a garment, and blow out the sun like a candle, because he just turned the light on. That tweet might distract someone from pornography and make them look up.

I’ve been tweeting anonymously for a month mainly to test its spiritual and family effects on me. In spite of all the dangers, it seems like a risk worth taking. “All things were created through Christ and for Christ” (Colossians 1:16). The world does not know it, but that is why Twitter exists and that’s why I Tweet.

By his grace and for his glory,

Pastor John

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Water Sports

I'm not saying we weighed too much, I'm just saying...