Quote of the day.

from back in the day…

“Art is innate in the artist, like an instinct that seizes and makes a tool out of the human being. The thing in the final analysis that wills something in him is not he, the personal man, but the aim of the art.” Carl Jung

A new category, called “daddy likes”

It has been brought to my attention that I may have materialist tendencies. Now, I shall neither confirm nor deny the allegation, rather, I will let you in on some of the more tasty items that I would purchase if finances were unlimited.

In this new series that I will call ‘daddy likes’, I offer up for your consideration the Numark NuVJ.

This MIDI controller would allow me to VJ more like a DJ using it in conjunction with a Apple iMac and the ArKaos VJ 3.5 DMX software… of course, I do not have either of these items so they both fit into the ‘daddy likes’ list too.

I see a bank of old tv’s setup, stacked high in the corners of a concert or worship space to which I could project the images that this system can create, moving through those images in rhythm to the music… ahh, what a pleasure that would be.

So, does this make me a materialist? I don’t know, you decide.

Ripping CD’s

So far I am about halfway through ripping my CD collection to Apple Lossless files. Here’s the stats as they stand:

99.1GB or 106,435MB

311 Albums

-=Averages=-

342MB/Album

29MB/Song

I cannot stand the idea of compressing my music and excepting the following loss in audio quality, that’s why I chose the lossless compression route. Larger files? Yes. Much greater audio jam satisfaction? Most definitely, yes!

Quote of the day.

Today’s quote comes from Mark Stephenson over at ‘The First Epistle of Mark’ called ‘Exposure and Contamination’:

I think many young Christians, many emergent, think they are strong enough to be in the world and not be contaminated by it. They think too highly of themselves. Our pride comes before our fall. We have rejected “churchianity” and “christianese” in favor of diving headlong into the world. And maybe this is where Jesus calls us to be. But many of us are not ready to be there. We are over-exposed to the world and under-exposed to the voice, presence and power of God. And so, right and left, we are being contaminated. And instead of spreading the gospel, we are infecting the next generation of disciples with eight parts world, one part God.

Do we understand how much we allow culture, absent of God, to influence us verses how much we allow God’s influence in our lives? It is a question I often ponder.

Quote of the day.

Jason Clark’s follow up entry to his post yesterday called “Cultural Neutering” has given me the quote of the day:

“Christians should not embrace a postmodern worldview; we must not adapt to postmodernity . . . but we do need to incarnate the timeless in the timely.�

I think Jason is quoting Duffy Robbins here, but I am not certain. Still, it sums up in a catchy little phrase the whole of my post Creating a Relevant and Distinct Culture from yesterday.
This post, called “Failings of Cultural Responses” balances out some of the statements Jason made yesterday.

Quote of the day.

A friend of a friend (my sister) sort of connection has brought me to today’s quote of the day:

“until recently, i had a “good” job. a “real” job. meaning a job that was turning me into a serious asshole, a cheater, a manipulater of people for my own “successful” ends, and a man abandoning his own wife and son for these demands that kept popping up. because, “hey, a man’s gotta eat”. i now think these thoughts and several like them about “responsibility” and “success” are lies of oppression that we should heed no longer. and in not heeding them, you will become a fool to the world to trust in your god alone to be your provider and protector.” – Jon Perez, from his “1 corinthians chapter three” post.

Viva la Revolution! Makes one wonder what the true opiate of the masses is? Was Karl right or have the we found a better drug for society, the American dream?

Karl Marx

Creating a Relevant and Distinct Culture

I don’t have the answer to this but I found myself wondering about the effect and purpose of culture in society as I read Jason Clark’s post about Cultural Neutering. Our desire to be culturally relevant is born out of a desire to reach people where they are at and to affect the culture that we find ourselves in for the better, to become a part of the society without being absorbed by it. It is an ‘in the world but not of the world” sort of thought, at least for me.

Perhaps my reading of the post is unbalanced but it appears to address the separate nature of the church subculture as a wholly negative state for the church and I simply can not agree with that. Whereas the church’s subculture needs to be reminded that it is designed to engage the culture at large there will always be a measure of healthy separation in the Christian subculture, no matter the society the church finds itself in. The Kingdom of God must be distinctive as well as relevant in order for it to have any use in this world. It’s a both/and situation in my book and should be presented as such lest as we focus on the need for change in how we engage the culture to the determent of the distinctives that the Kingdom of God offers the individuals of that culture to enter into a deeper, more meaningful and beautiful way of living.

The Kingdom of God will always offer a different way to look at the world we find ourselves in, a separate perspective and approach that should bring life into the world. If we are closing ourselves off to the world in our expression of separateness then we must change because we are in danger of loosing our saltiness, but the same would be true if we were to capitulate completely to the whims of society in our effort to be relevant.

I love the thoughts and ideas of the emergent conversation because they challenge and compel me. It has been rightly identified that the church has built up walls around itself for protection and comfort that have closed us off from the world, that is wrong and needs to be changed. I just do not want us to throw the baby out with the bathwater and distain our distinctives wholesale in response.

I would also argue that ‘to everything there is a season’, meaning, sometimes it is healthy to withdrawal into the safety of Christian community. When we are hurt and wounded, weak and tired, struggling to just keep our heads above the water, sometimes we must disengage for our health. Jesuits have a concept called the retreat, and have times every year where they separate from the world and immerse themselves in the story of Jesus, meditating on it’s meaning and effect on their life. Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, originally created the retreat to be thirty days long. A whole month devoted to nothing more then getting closer to God, separating oneself from the world and examining their place in eternity.

At this point I could go into the need for a distinct Christian culture for people to retreat into for such times of healing, but I am already growing weary of typing this post so I will just throw out the idea and leave it to you for discussion.

Sleep…

sleeping beauty How long will you lie there, you sluggard? When will you get up from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest – and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man. (Proverbs 6:9-11, NIV)

Do not love sleep or you will grow poor; stay awake and you will have food to spare. (Proverbs 20:12-14, NIV)

The bible tells use not to love our sleep but sleep is not a waste of time and sinful in and of itself. As I was looking for the above verses, I also ran across this one:

If GOD doesn’t build the house, the builders only build shacks.
If GOD doesn’t guard the city, the night watchman might as well nap.
It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late, and work your worried fingers to the bone.
Don’t you know he enjoys giving rest to those he loves? (Psalm 127:1-2, MSG)
Me, I can be lazy, getting enough sleep is not an issue. I need to listen more to the first two verses then the last one. But for some of you, my friends, I am concerned. You’re always on the go, always doing something, running yourself ragged with the concerns of this life.

I started thinking about this when I read a Relevant article called ‘Sleep: It Does a Body Good’, and reminded of the topic again with a podcast from IT Conversations called Tech Nation that had an interview with sleep and dream medicine specialist, Dr Rubin Naiman.

Read the article, listen to the podcast and take heed my friends :)