Friday, December 22, 2006

Winter Travel Schedule

I've added a Google Calendar on the right sidebar that will have all of my speaking gigs listed, but here's a list of the ones in the upcoming months. If you're in the area, drop me an email and let's get a beer.

January 17: Boston Young Adult Ministry Project, Boston, MA
January 22-26: Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnais, IL
January 30-February 1: Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, GA

February 2-3: Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA
February 20-22: Campbell University, Buie's Creek, NC
February 23-25: UNC-Greenboro, Greensboro, NC

March 4-10: Sweden, Norway, Denmark

April 12-14: Wheaton Theology Conference, Wheaton, IL
April; 16-18: Emergent Theological Conversation, Philadelphia, PA

May 3-5: Western Seminary Youth Ministry Conference, Holland, MI
May 17-19: Faith as a Way of Life Conference, New Haven, CT
May 19-20: Washington Arts Group Conference, Washington, D.C.

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Monday, December 18, 2006

I'm Digging Jay Bakker

Last night I watched One Punk Under God (hooray for Comcast On Demand), and I really like Jay. I didn't always. Once, a couple of years ago, he was a speaker at the National Youth Workers Convention, in the evening slot, and I was hosting a late night deal. He went long--really long--and that meant I had to start late and stay up later. I was pissed.

What's funny is that, on the first episode of the show, his wife talks about a speaking gig where he went way over his time, and she was in the front row making the finger-across-the-throat sign. I'm about 90% sure that was the YS convention.

I've never met Jay, but I've heard he's a good guy. The show portrays his as really gentle, a bit insecure, and totally likeable. His wife feels about pastoral ministry about how mine does. And he is totally overshadowed by his Dad, the fallen televangelist (although I know how documentarians can shape things to look a certain way).

In any case, I think the show is good, and I think Jay is a good guy. I hope to meet him.

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Friday, December 15, 2006

What Makes Me Faint

Now, I don't want you thinking that I faint willy-nilly. The sight of blood, even my own, doesn't make me weak in the knees. Neither do dead bodies -- I see 3-5 cadavers every year as a police chaplain.

No, I faint in very specific circumstances: in a clinical setting, when a physician is describing the internal functions of my body, usually accompanied by a drawing or x-ray.

It first happened in college. I had reffed a hockey tournament that had me skating 14 hours a day for three days straight. By the end of the tourney, I couldn't even walk. I went to the college infirmary and was told I has severe tendinitis in both ankles, and, as the doc drew pictures of my tendons on that white paper they pull over the exam table, I went down. This week, it happened as soon as he popped the x-rays of my knee on the light box.

I also occasionally faint at the sight of really bad theology.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Second Opinion

So, my brother, the doc, tells me that when I faint in doctor's offices, it's not a fight-or-flight response. That's a sympathetic response that sends blood to the extremities that need it. Instead, I'm having a vasovagal reaction, which is a rapid drop in blood pressure connected to the parasympathetic nervous system.

Then he told me I'm a wus. I think that's a clinical term.

The Verdict

Torn medial meniscus, requiring arthroscopic surgery.

Also confirmed: I suffer from white coat syndrome, which means I faint when doctors start drawing pictures of my broken body parts. It hasn't happened since 1990, but it happened today. The doc said, "That's the fight-or-flight response, and your body is choosing flight."

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Listen to Pete Rollins and Support Dreamers

Go here if you're interested in buying a lecture by Pete Rollins -- your purchase supports a great minitry in Ireland called Dreamers of the Day.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

I Am (Not) as Smart as Peter Rollins

Sorry to be late to the party on this one, but let me echo the rest of the emergent blogosphere when I proclaim, Pete Rollins's book, How (Not) to Speak of God is the best bloody book yet on the the emerging church!

I had skimmed it before, and I'd read blog posts about it, but I hadn't really delved into it till this weekend. I read it thoroughly because I was tapped to respond to Pete when he spoke at Yale Divinity School on Monday. My response there was mostly fawning, for Pete has written a negative theology for the emerging conversation that is poignant, beautiful, and profound. My main questions were not, "Is this the right direction for us to go?" but, "How will this play at Walmart...and Yale?" Not well, I'm afraid.

It's a short book, and only the first half is theory. The entire second half is liturgies from his community, Ikon, in Belfast. At first, I was skeptical of the liturgies, but I am now convinced that they make the book. I can't describe it. You have to read it, and probably meet Peter, to really get it.

Indeed, I like the book so much that I am making a proclamation:

I will no longer respond to any critics of Emergent
who have not read

How (Not) to Speak of God

If you want to
get the emerging church, read this book.

I've Been Interviewed... a UK-based youth ministry blogger. You can read it here.