Conservative Opposition Researcher To Present at #HackTheMinistry

A few months ago I noticed some incisive tweets coming from a woman in DC named Celia Riley, who while clearly conservative was nevertheless fearless in calling out #45 for his inappropriate comments about women, muslims or anyone else that happened to cross his mind at 3 AM. Her Twitter bio is as follows “Practical idealist. Sarcastic realist. Consistent outlier. Tweets are my neighbor’s cat’s and he’s not to be taken seriously.” which I really liked. I also sensed that Celia was a follower of Jesus so I reached out to her to see if she would be interested in being a presenter at Off The Maps October 12th coming out of retirement party called #HackThe Ministry. She said yes! Why do I want Celia here? Because we need to hear from followers of Jesus who are doing ministry inside of circles that … Continue reading »

Hack the Ministry

10 years ago, I met Jim Henderson.  He promised he’d save me 10 years (or at least make me smart enough not to waste another 10 in “the ministry”).  He’s kept his promise, but he’s also taught me how to find meaning in the M word. We’re offering you a chance to Hack the Ministry too this fall – Oct. 12. Tickets are available.

ERA doesn’t equal good/bad pitching

Living a few hours from Safeco field, I hear about Felix Hernandez a lot.  For many years he was the only bright-spot for Mariners fans – until the past few seasons.  Felix is a great pitcher, no doubt, but how great? If we answer with ERA, we have to consider that there are at least 5 things that affect a pitcher’s ERA (earned run average): the pitch that leaves his hand luck the defense behind the pitcher the ball-park & sequencing. The pitch that leaves his hand is the ONLY thing the pitcher controls. Felix has no control: of whether the batter reaches on a bad pitch and sprays it to the opposite field – luck. on whether his left-fielder made a good jump on contact (or whether he has the actual speed to get there before the ball lands) – … Continue reading »

Geno v. Cal? Geno’s offensive philosophy wins

There’s a critical difference between the two dominant NCAA basketball teams: Kentucky ( in the men’s tournament) and Connecticut (in the women’s). UConn doesn’t slow down offensively.  As evidenced by last night’s unrelenting pressure against Maryland, the Huskies play great defense (like UK) but they never ‘hold the ball’ on the offensive end.  As Nate Silver shows at 538, Kentucky did slow things down and it killed them (literally). Here’s a picture of it: 

“Our church won’t collapse” – until it does

Being 45 is interesting.  I’m old enough to appreciate order (‘this is the way we do it around here’) and yet I still sympathize with the younger crowd (demanding an answer to the question ‘Why do we do that, that way?”) The problem is both groups are right in what they assert.  The Boomers have spent 30 – 40 years learning the ropes of church. Moving to top of the food chain, they’ve waited their turn and now they control the budget or the music or the __________. The youngers – those revolutionaries – want (even need) things to change.  When they don’t, they vote with their feet.  They’ve decided to play somewhere else with their time and with their attention. So, it’s really about the status-quo.  Who wants to keep the future looking just like the present?  Turns out, … Continue reading »

Rebounding isn’t what we think it is

Having just read this from Marginal Revolution, here are a couple of thoughts about rebounding (we are in the middle of March Madness). The article makes an interesting claim – that the this year’s two best NBA rebounders don’t “block out”. ** Blocking out means making (usually violent) contact with the nearest opponent as soon as you realize a shot has been taken. Coaches from elementary school to the NBA teach blocking out and it’s pretty much accepted as gospel that “great rebounders block out.” Except they don’t – at least this year in the NBA. In fact, it turns out that the two best rebounders (statistically) in the NBA this year only “block out” 5 and 10 times per hundred shots (respectively). Take DeAndre Jordan (rebounding maestro of the LA Clippers) – his team rebounds better when he’s not in … Continue reading »

Customers – for church

Who do you want to help? Who you believe Jesus misses the most? I know, he loves everyone, but who does he like? If you want to know, ask yourself an easier question: Who do I like? Guess what. Jesus likes them too. How do I know? Because Jesus likes you and he likes me. So of course he likes our friends. When you consider your church’s customers you have to focus on two things: Who do I know (and like)? Who’s local? Liking matters. Don’t discount it. Humans have been doing business with family for thousands of years. Why? Because in low-trust environments, blood is way thicker than water. If I can see you, or sit at a table with you, there’s a much greater chance I’ll trust you. If we’re Twitter friends, I’ll find you entertaining, but trust … Continue reading »

Post-retirement Boomer Church

Here are Bob Lefsetz’s predictions for 2015. My favorite is: 14. Baby boomers will continue to run the music business. No significant change will happen until they retire, which is at least a half decade off. Applied to the church, I’d say it this way: Baby boomers will continue to run the church. No significant change will happen until they die (or get too old to care), which is at least a half decade off. In the music business, I get it. Those damned Boomers have spent their whole lives waiting for the payoff in control of the money machine. In church, I don’t. The founder of our movement, a working stiff (carpenter), told us two things about just this sort of situation: Don’t lord it over each other when you do get your hands on the levels of the machine. … Continue reading »

Neo and Traditional Buyers

This is worth the 10 minutes and the graphics are cool too. We’re looking at this from a school perspective – which customers do we have? What can we provide for either of them or both? A Tour Guide to The Two Planets: NEO and Traditional from MEGA Labs on Vimeo.

Paramount Records just wanted to sell furniture

My Human Geography class is studying culture right now. Specifically the difference between popular and folk. As I was preparing for that, I remember watching this Charlie Rose interview with Jack Black. Black makes a couple of important points: Paramount was only interested in selling furniture (they didn’t care about the music) They would put anyone in front of the microphone if they thought they could sell 10 records They exposed the greater United States to a whole bunch of different kinds of music that would have long-lasting cultural impacts. It reminds me of Gary Vee’s post about depth. As Jack Black says, “Each of these people – women and minorities – are getting to tell their stories in their own voice.” Here’s the Spotify list that will give you a portion of the Paramount period. Enjoy.