Thursday, May 25, 2006

I've Followed Up... my first Out of Ur post here.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

In Praise of a Friend

You know how some friendships come easy and some come hard? Well, I've got a few of each. And, to be honest, the ones that come hard seem to fade over time. The more energy it takes, I suppose, the less likely I am to really invest the time and emotion it takes.

Among my friends is one who falls into the "hard" category. Actually, it would be more accurate to say that this friendship used to be difficult. This friend and I worked through some hard times, some awkward times, as friends and also as two who do business together (which adds complexity to any friendship).

But we got through the hard times and came out into the other side with a knowledge that we will, indeed, be lifelong friends.

So, today I celebrate him as he celebrates another year of life -- and the conclusion of a colon cleanse! Enjoy that cup of coffee, bro!

And happy birthday, Marko.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Out Of Ur

I've written a post for Leadership Journal's Out of Ur blog here.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

No post today

Instead, I've been involved in a healthy conversation here.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Emergent Summer Institute

I've got a couple offerings at the Solomon's Porch/Emergent Institute next month, in case you're interested. One's with Will Penner on youth ministry, and the other is a 2-day conversation about the theology of Jurgen Moltmann. I'd love to have you there.

Distraction Creep

Maybe you've heard of "mission creep." Well, I find it amazing how many distractions can creep into the life of even the most well-meaning author. Here I am, 10 days into writing, and I've got one page to show for it. Ugh. Lunches, emails, t-ball games, carpools. They all stand between me and a completed book.

Well, at least the cleanse is going well...

Friday, May 12, 2006

More Reading

Maybe my favorite book of the winter was Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods. Rarely do I laugh out loud while reading, but I did often during my voracious consumption of this book. In fact, I left my original copy, given to me by Brandon Barker, in a hotel room (on the back of the toilet), so I had to spring for another copy while flying through O'Hare. It was worth it -- what a great writer Bryson is. I'd kill to be able to write in such a winsome and hilarious tone, while also saying something important. Who knows, maybe I'll bump into him next month in Hanover, NH.

Yesterday, I finally picked up a book I've long been wanting to read, given to me a year ago by James Mills. It's a collection of speeches by Vaclav Havel, a man I have long admired. In an age of Christianism, spin, and speech writers, Havel wrote his own speeches and always spoke the truth -- and he spoke unequivocally about truth. I wonder what he'd say if he was going to speak at Liberty University...

Thursday, May 11, 2006


Having finished my coursework and comps, and before the next book and then (drumroll, please) dissertation -- hey, if Lauren Winner can finish hers, then I can finish mine -- I read a few books for pleasure. One great one was In the Lake of the Woods by Tim O'Brien. It was wicked...good. That is, it was wicked and good and wicked good. I really want to read The Things They Carried next. This dude is haunted by Vietnam, but he also happens to be a postmodern memoirist and novelist, playing with issues of truth and reality.

I listened to 1776 by David McCullough -- it was excellent. The fact that he can not only write a great story, but also read it in such a compelling fashion was admirable.

The Kite Runner was also on the reading list. I liked it -- it moved along briskly -- but didn't love it. For the second time, I tried, and failed to read Eco's Baudolino -- I just can't get past about page 150. The same thing happens when I try to read Foucault's Pendulum.

Finally, I'm alsmost done with a history of Byzantium. It's pretty dry, and it moves along too fast, but it's good to fill in about 500 years of history that I'm pretty fuzzy on.

Next in the queue: one hundred years of solititude.

Monday, May 08, 2006

New Beginnings

Yesterday I returned from a meeting in Dallas, concluding a whirlwind of travel. Since the beginning of the year, I have flown over 32,000 miles -- all domestic -- on Northwest. And now, that is done. I don't travel again for business until August.

But, I do start blogging again today. Now that I'll be sitting at a desk most every day from 6am till 3pm, I'll take 15 minutes to post something.

I'm also starting a 24-day master colon cleanse today, shepherded by my natural health coach, Shelley Pagitt. Although I will miss meat, cheese, and wheat, my coffee addition is going to be the toughest to beat. Don't call me this morning. I'm a bastard without coffee.

But, most significantly, I'm starting work on a new book today. Actually, I'm continuing work on one (a novel) and starting a new one. I don't know exactly what the new one is going to be about, but I hope that will unfold in the next few weeks.