Monday, November 17, 2008

The Secret Lives of Chickens

If only the peace-keeping chickens had been called in before the US invaded Iraq.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Vente Does Not Mean Large

In light of the Starbuck's church video a couple of posts ago, I feel obligated to embed this short clip:

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Finding the Key Without Using It.

This was our "confessional" last night during our home-group's worship time:

Unforgiven - Metallica

Make of it what you will. There are many compelling images here.

What grabs me is:
The lyrical description of a deeply hurt individual trapped in his anger, knowing the key is forgiveness, but refusing (or being unable) to move beyond "I dub thee unforgiven."
The images of a person living their entire life in a darkened cell, scrapping the wall to escape when the key and the door have been there all along.

Capturing Church Culture Crap

This is a great depiction of the surface-level aspects of the nebulous "Church culture" concept we talk about from time to time in the King's Bridge community. Church culture is something we've attempted to deconstruct, and then, for the most part, reject.

Sadly, the church consulting organization that created the video really seems to embody a lot of the deeper-level church culture crap I find frustrating: church growth focus (#s rather than relationship), western-capitalist success models, come-to-us orientation (rather than releasing the church out into the community-at-large), lack-of-social-justice concern and a buy-our-book ad to top it off. They're focussed on re-branding but I personally think the "product" itself needs a top-to-bottom redesign. In fact, it may need to become a completely different "product" (I shudder every time I type the word "product" to describe the church.).

I think the choice of Starbucks as the subject of the analogy really says it all. I rarely enter a Starbucks, and when I do I feel a little dirty. But the analogy works because it assumes that Starbucks is a great embodiment of user-friendliness, cultural approachability and personal belonging. Of course, for many people it is all of these things. But not for homeless people, eco-hippies, someone who doesn't want to fight for a comfy-seat or people who don't know how to pronounce "vente."

I guess when it comes down to it, I think the church should be subverting many aspects of the culture at large. In my charismatic fundamentalist past, this meant being counter-cultural ... which really just meant replacing mainstream entertainment with cheesy, sanitized Christian equivalents. That was a miserable failure. Subversion goes a lot deeper than this: It means embracing popular cultural icons and engaging the deeper areas of western corruption using it's own language. It means embracing the culture-at-large in many ways, and embracing people-at-large in even more ways. It means infecting the culture, spreading through it, growing organically without central-control and allowing transformation to happen from the inside out. It means recognizing that Christianity as a movement has survived and thrived for two thousand years, but no single institutional embodiment of it has (no - not even the Catholic church - but that's another day's argument).

Whew ... all I meant to do was post this little video, not spew a rant.

Thus endeth the rant.

Friday, November 07, 2008


Finally, someone has solved the universal problem of the spontaneous need to fish.