Friday, April 18, 2014

Holy Week Video Meditation

I created this video meditation for last night's Maundy Thursday service. Perhaps it will aid in your own Holy Week journey as well. Have a blessed conclusion to this Lenten season.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

"Far Different" - A Prayer for Palm Sunday

Matthew 21:1-11

On roadsides and street corners
Our feet curling over curbs
Our necks straining in anticipation
We hope for a glimpse of the holy.

We have our own ideas of what it will look like
With our cloaks spread on the brick and
Our list of demands in hand;
Our lips parting in songs of praise and welcome,
Our thoughts churning with what will be done for us.

And when the moment arrives,
The Promised One comes into view
Far different from what our mental images professed.

Riding a simple and slow beast,
Dressed in common regalia,
He passes by
And if one listens closely, it can be heard:
“Love your enemies.
Pray for the orphan.
Feed my sheep.”

It is here that we have a choice:
To take up your demands instead of ours
Or point accusingly and try forcing you to conform.

Where will peace come if not from where we expect?
Through him you call,
Refusing our categories;
Pointing to love and grace and truth.

In a display of humility we are shown power.
We watch him ride past
Inviting us toward a new beginning.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Leaving Evangelicalism

On April 1st, Rachel Held Evans wrote some thoughts in the aftermath of a week when World Vision announced that they would employ people in same-sex relationships, then backtracked a few days later after thousands of good, faithful, evangelical, Bible-believing Christians threatened to, or really did, pull their sponsorships of impoverished children.

Please note the sarcasm in the last paragraph. Read no further unless you can see it. Thanks.

In part, here is what Rachel wrote:
For many years, I felt that part of my call as a writer and blogger of faith was to be a different sort of evangelical, to advocate for things like gender equality, respect for LGBT people, and acceptance of science and biblical scholarship within my community. But I think that perhaps I became more invested in trying to “fix” evangelicalism (to my standards! oh the hubris!) than in growing Kingdom. And as helpful as I know that work has been for so many of you, I think it’s time to take a slightly different approach. 
So rather than wearing out my voice in calling for an end to evangelicalism’s culture wars, I think it’s time to focus on finding and creating church among its many refugees—women called to ministry, our LGBTQ brother and sisters, science-lovers, doubters, dreamers, misfits, abuse survivors, those who refuse to choose between their intellectual integrity and their faith or their compassion and their religion, those who have, for whatever reason, been “farewelled.” 
Instead of fighting for a seat at the evangelical table, I want to prepare tables in the wilderness, where everyone is welcome and where we can go on discussing (and debating!) the Bible, science, sexuality, gender, racial reconciliation, justice, church, and faith, but without labels, without wars.
To me, Rachel sounds very tired. She's tired of trying to be part of a strand of Christianity that seems to be becoming narrower, more insulated, and further from what she and many others believe to be what following Jesus really looks like. And as she says above, being "a different sort" in the same camp just doesn't seem to be worth it any more. This World Vision issue just seems to be the final straw. What seems more fruitful, on the other hand, is to create a new community among others who feel disaffected from that larger community.

As one born and raised in the United Church of Christ, a tradition notably more progressive and inclusive, I support what Rachel is doing. Her message is really one not unlike what many in the UCC have adhered to for a number of years. She and many other Millennials in particular seem to be drawn to an incarnation of faith that is more welcoming.

This is not without some pain, of course. Even though one may seek sanctuary in a new community, it also means severing ties with an old one. Even though certain beloved practices may carry over, it still won't be the same. Some relationships might not survive. Some beliefs, even treasured ones that had once served as lifelines or helped provide a sense of commonality and belonging, might not either.

My own stay in evangelicalism was not extensive. It didn't last more than a few years in late high school and early college just as I was starting to really wrestle with both my faith and a sense of call to ministry. You might say that I dabbled at best, as even when I was deepest in certain aspects of the evangelical tradition, my experience was still colored by my UCC background and the scholarship of my religion classes, which kept me from ever really going "all in," as it were.

I felt like an exile for a little while after it became clear that I didn't really belong. Like Rachel, I tried to hold on but I should have let it go a lot sooner than I did. Some of us have such good intentions and high hopes about remaining, and are quite often disappointed.

For a while, I stayed in that exile mindset. But nowadays, I think that maybe I'm more supposed to be one of the ones helping to provide sanctuary. I can relate to the experience, sure, but how many of us may be called more to provide a safe haven for those who have finally realized that they can no longer stay, and who grieve not only leaving but what caused them to conclude that leaving was their best option?

It can be a huge and painful thing to leave the faith tradition that helped shape your life, especially after realizing that it will no longer make room for you; that even though you've changed, it refuses to change with you.

I hope that I can do my part to be welcoming; that I can listen to and honor what evangelical exiles need. Sometimes I wonder how well we communicate that there are other possible places where they can hopefully find the fellowship and understanding that they need.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Small Sips Ends Up Ranting a Little

Well, how about that. Charles Arn shares a "surprising secret" to church growth, which is neither surprising nor a secret:
Several years ago, a study by the largest Protestant denomination in the country found a startling relationship between the length of time pastors had been in their churches and the growth or decline of those churches. 
Their finding? 
Approximately three-fourths of their growing churches were being led by pastors who had been in their church more than four years, while two-thirds of their declining churches were being led by pastors who had been in their church less than four years. Their conclusion (with which I agree): Long-term pastorates do not guarantee that a church will grow. But short-term pastorates essentially guarantee that a church will not grow.
You may recall when I made it a point to study what goes into building a long-term pastorate a few years ago. My reasons at the time were more personal: I wanted to break out of the cycle of moving all the time that I'd known my entire life up to that point. I just wasn't used to staying in one place for longer than a certain amount of time, so I decided to read up on what might go into staying longer.

Some might ask what the usefulness of this topic is in a broader sense. Why should anyone have a vested interest in maintaining a longer pastorate beyond just not wanting to move as often? Well, here's your answer: Arn finds that longer pastorates tend to produce growth, stability, and trust.

Who knew? Oh wait, I did.

So many laughs. We've been enjoying these "Kid Snippets" videos. The gist is that kids come up with the dialogue and then adults act it out:

Get with the program. Or better yet, don't. Jan at A Church for Starving Artists shares thoughts on the usefulness of church programs:
The worst kind of programming – in my estimation - involves going, sitting, hearing, and leaving with new information. But nothing changes. No souls have been transformed. No cultures have been shifted. No vision has been cast.  
The Program Church is Over. The Relational Church is Essential in 21st Century ministry. 
For the record, some of the best ministers I know do what they do best via programs. But the difference is that the purpose of their program planning is about building relationships between each other and God. It’s not about college-application-resume-building or making the elders feel like the staff is earning its money because the calendar is so full of stuff to do.  
Especially during Lent, you’d think we would slow down a little. But alas . . .
In part, this sounds like a quality vs. quantity issue. Are we "program-sized" churches throwing out tons of activities just to look busy, or are we intentionally planning events or groups to help transform lives and build relationships?

I'd rather just quote this whole thing. Gordon Atkinson reflects on questioning the beliefs of one's tradition:
If you are part of a religion or spiritual tradition with a bible, scriptures, traditions, steps, or any sort of received wisdom, you should embrace your tradition’s teachings with humility. 
And you should be encouraged to take any two doctrines and throw them out. You get two. Any two that don’t sit well with you. And I don’t mean you should just ignore them. I mean go outside, look up or down or sideways or in whatever direction you think points toward your god and say, “Hell no. I’m not going to do that!” 
Stand on your own two feet and use a firm voice. Explain yourself. 
“I’m not going to do that because I think it’s evil. I think it’s going to hurt people. And it violates a sense of rightness I have inside of me. A rightness that I feel has been enlarged by my devotion to my faith tradition. And if you are the kind of god who demands such a thing from your followers, I don’t think very much of you.”
Hopefully that whets your appetite to read the rest. The journey of faith includes wrestling with questions and authenticity in profession. It also includes, if you have chosen a specific tradition to follow, striking the right balance between adherence and honesty. Those probably aren't the right words, but they were the ones that came to mind.

Ten. Thousand. Maybe you heard about World Vision's recent announcement regarding acceptance of employees in same-sex relationships, and their subsequent back-tracking. Matthew Paul Turner reflects on the fallout:
It took several days to count the total loss of sponsorships, a number that eventually rose to “just about 10,000 children,” according to Stearns. A handful of people did call back, hoping to start up their sponsorships again. But the majority did not. 
And that breaks my heart. 
It should break all of our hearts, regardless of whether you praised World Vision’s initial decision or panned it as “godless.” 
Even still, those three words should break us friends. Because it’s a number that represents 10,000 needy children, flesh and blood of various races and nationalities, little ones who are precious in God’s sight. 
And yet, a large number of so-called born again Christians treated their relationships with their kids like they were little more than subscriptions to HBO. Sure, some people probably stopped sponsoring their kid and began sponsoring another kid through a different organization. But that’s not any better. A child sponsorship is not a product that can be returned and exchanged for a different brand. There’s nothing “moral” about using a kid as a bargaining chip to punish a Christian organization for making a decision that you don’t agree with. There’s nothing honoring about using children to force an organization’s hand. There’s nothing “pro life” about that. There’s nothing remotely “Christlike” about that. It’s downright disgusting, manipulative, and sad. If I was a Pentecostal, I might even call it demonic.
Hey, remember that quote from Gordon Atkinson I just shared about rejecting parts of your faith tradition that may call you to hurt people? Ta-da!

Hey, you. Yeah, you who are mad about marriage equality and homosexuality; who was scandalized by World Vision's original announcement: remember God's repeated claims to care for the orphan in the OT? How about Jesus saying that causing "one of these little ones" to stumble should earn you a millstone around your neck and a trip to the bottom of the sea?

No, you're too busy Taking A Stand for the Sanctity Of Marriage. Meanwhile the kid you just dumped is starving. Think about how First World Problem the nature of your cancellation is. You have a choice, that kid doesn't. And don't give me the whole "but I started sponsoring another child through this other much more Biblically faithful organization" stuff. The original kid still ain't eating, thanks to you. But hey, enjoy your feelings of self-righteousness. You have the leisure to do that.

Misc. Carey Nieuwhof on cultural trends that church leaders may want to take note of. It's not ground-breaking, but a good reminder. Jan on clergy salaries. PeaceBang on supervising church staff. Jamie on living with someone with a different process of doing things. Rachel on leaving evangelicalism, sort of. I think I have more to say about this later.

Friday, April 04, 2014

The Quiet and the Noise

Since Saturday, I've been feeling very quiet.

To be sure, there's been plenty to do. And there will be plenty to do as April goes along. We have Holy Week coming up, after all. This is one of the busiest times of the year for pastors. Not only that, but I'll finally be returning to Eden Theological Seminary for their spring convocation and my 10-year (!!!) reunion. Then I turn right around to come home and celebrate Confirmation Sunday.

That, and I'm working ahead a little in my spiritual direction program. The light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter, and I'm doing what I can to will it closer. My practicum is winding down, and I only have three more class times to go.

So there's plenty of noise.

But I've also been feeling quiet. I've been feeling quiet about this space. It's not that I don't want to write anything. I just can't think of anything that I want to say right now. I worked myself up so much about the radio show, and now that it has passed I've been content to not say anything for a couple days, and I've felt a peace about that.

I suppose that's changed since I'm now writing about not writing. It kind of works against me, doesn't it? Maybe this is just a fancy way of saying, "Sorry, but I've been spending my energy in places other than this blog lately."

Even when life around me is fixing to get more and more noisy, I've been finding a quiet in the midst of it, and I've been enjoying it. I'm not in a rush to move away from it or jump start anything. There's enough to do, that's for sure.

So I'll go be quiet for a little while longer, and then I'll be done.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Me on Moody Radio

This past Saturday morning I appeared on the show Up for Debate through Moody Radio. The topic of the day was when one should or shouldn't leave one's church, thanks to this blog post that I wrote back in January.

You can access the recording of the program on their website under the "Past Programs" tab; just find the March 29th show. It's also available through iTunes.

All in all, I really enjoyed it. I found the host, Julie Roys and my fellow guest Chuck Betters to be very cordial and hospitable, and it was a good discussion. It was actually amazing how quickly the hour went. I could have said a lot more about the subject given more time.

Except I said "Um…" a lot. I didn't realize I was doing it at the time. Then I listened to it again and started yelling at Radio Me to knock it off. I mean, come on, man. Just make your point already. Sheesh.

Anyway, I was glad for the opportunity and the experience. I'd love to do something like it again.

Friday, March 28, 2014

March 2014 Pop Culture Roundup

Five items for March...

1. I read a book produced by a few different Baptist organizations called Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth, the review for which you can read here.

2. I also read Genesis and the Rise of Civilization by j. Snodgrass this month, the review of which you can read here.

3. There is one more episode of The Walking Dead left in season 4 before it goes away for the summer. On the one hand I'll certainly miss it, as it really is my favorite show currently on TV. On the other hand, I'll need that long to recover from the gut-punch that was the episode titled "The Grove." Those who watch know exactly what I'm talking about. Those who don't aren't getting a word about it here because I could barely get through telling Coffeewife about it. Instead I'll say this: yes, this show is about surviving the zombie apocalypse. But a big part of that is surviving ourselves and the others left alive. And sometimes that survival involves horrible, tragic decisions. Those moments on the show have been very well done for the most part, no less the truly awful development of which I will not speak. I'm very much looking forward to season 5 in October.

4. On a much happier note, we got the movie Frozen pretty much as soon as it came out on DVD at the strong insistence of Coffeeson, and watched it just last week. We meet the sisters Anna and Elsa, the latter of whom was born with powers to create all manner of frozen precipitation from her fingertips. When they are really young, they enjoy playing together with this power until an accident happens and Elsa cuts herself off from pretty much all of existence. When it is time for her coronation as queen, things start to unravel not just for her but for the entire kingdom. There were certain familiar Disney tropes present here, such as a princess pining for True Love, the silly sidekick, the Journey of Discovery, and, of course, the death of parental figures, but this also tweaked a few of them, mostly the True Love one, in several ways. There is also the strong message that you need to open yourself up to and trust others, with which I resonated. My only real gripe is that "Let It Go" had pretty well been worn out for me before this viewing, so when we got to that scene it just seemed like something I needed to endure. But that's not really the movie's fault.

5. My favorite musical discoveries are the ones that come out of nowhere. I recently stumbled across 17-year-old British singer-songwriter Birdy singing "Strange Birds:"

It's off of her new album Fire Within, which isn't yet available in the U.S., so if you're someone who can't wait to get it, you can do one of two things: fork over a little extra to get the import, or find a Youtube video of the entire album. Or both. Birdy at times reminds me of Lorde and at other times of Florence + the Machine. And with her being so young, I'd imagine she'll only get better with age.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Book Review: Genesis and the Rise of Civilization by j. Snodgrass

The core of a creation story is "Why? Why was the world created this way and what does that tell us about how to live in it?" What did the gods want from humanity? A creation story is like a blueprint or constitution, it contains the premise of the story people of that particular culture will enact with their lives. - j. Snodgrass, Genesis and the Rise of Civilization

My senior year of college, I wrote a research project in order to earn honors in my Religion major. I had taken an interest in the theology and writing of John Calvin earlier in my career there, and by the time I was set to start this paper was becoming more intrigued by the work of Karl Barth. To further both of these interests simultaneously, I decided that my paper would compare and contrast their views in a few major areas, drawing mainly from the magnum opus of each: the Institutes for Calvin, and Church Dogmatics for Barth. I even had the grand idea that I would write the paper as if the two of them could somehow be transported to a room across time and space and have a series of conversations with each other.

All things considered, Calvin and Barth are not incredibly far off from one another. While there are differences between them, they are considered to be in the same Reformed ballpark. Contrasting either of them with Luther, Wesley, Ignatius, Tillich, Altizer, and a host of others would have made for a more stark dynamic and probably for a more interesting paper. But this was my interest at the time, and I wanted to see it through.

In retrospect, however, I presented more of a contrast than perhaps was actually there. If you read my paper, I paint Calvin as this staunch conservative, perhaps even fundamentalist. There are undertones to his side of the dialogue that I made to sound rigid and even angry. On the other hand, Barth comes off as the more gentle and thoughtful progressive who tempers himself and his conversation partner. Clearly, my subconscious self wrote, this guy had come such a long way from the days of his predecessor.

It wasn't until later that I could read back over this and notice how I'd set up the dialogue in this way. Not only that, but I could see how the dynamic that I'd constructed between the two was a direct reflection of my own spiritual journey. I'd set up Calvin to represent not only my own earlier, more conservative self, but the viewpoint still taken by some with whom I'd had some conflict after moving away from that stance. In turn, I'd used Barth to represent the new space I was beginning to occupy, which was softer, at least further to the middle, and even a little battle-worn. Careful readers could probably notice the way I'd presented the personality and worldview of each, but it would take some extra work to learn the story behind why I wrote it in that way.

In Genesis and the Rise of Civilization, j. Snodgrass works carefully and deliberately through the first book of the Bible to seek the story behind the story. His working thesis is that these tales of creation and destruction, of wandering nomads and established cities, of individuals, couples, and families, represent the journey of a people, or of competing sets of people, who are trying to make sense of themselves, their relationships with other tribes and nations, and their understanding of God. Through the stories of Genesis, he argues, we can see bits and pieces of how the civilization that produced them understood themselves and their place in the world.

For instance, Snodgrass presents the brothers Cain and Abel as two archetypes. On the one hand is Cain, the farmer, the one who undertakes the work of established agriculture, which would have been associated with a more ordered society. On the other hand is Abel, the herdsman who tends flocks; who would have been more of a nomad, leading his animals wherever there was food and wherever he could find for himself as well. Of course, the end of the story is Cain killing Abel after Abel's sacrifice is deemed acceptable by God while Cain's is rejected. This story is not only about the further tragedy of a post-Eden existence, but the writer or writers in some sense also had in the back of their mind the tension between the city agriculturalists and the rugged wanderers out in the wilderness.

This sort of approach to these stories complicates the traditional "documentary hypothesis," which is the view that mainly four writers, identified by the initials JEDP, authored the first five books of the Hebrew Bible. J, the author traditionally held to have written the Cain and Abel story, for instance, would have written his material during the heights of Israel's monarchy when things were relatively peaceful. Could it be that he saw some tension play out between established methods of farming and outlying groups of wanderers, and that influenced how he told his parts of the narrative? The result would have been that he was offering commentary that God grieved this conflict, and even went so far as to favor the nomads. What does this mean for our reading of such a story?

Snodgrass pulls from a wide variety of sources in this commentary. On one page you'll find a footnote citing Midrash or noted Old Testament scholar Walter Breuggemann, and on the next you'll find a citation of Isaac Asimov. He pulls from history, anthropology, sociology, Jewish tradition, Biblical scholarship, and so many other sources to piece together the possibility that there is a subtext to these stories; a running commentary on what life was like at the time of their composition that the authors had varying degrees of awareness that they were offering.

If nothing else, I found this book incredibly thought-provoking. Snodgrass' approach is mainly one of reading the resulting text rather than spending too much time wondering who wrote which particular piece, although he does make nominal use of those theories. His chief concern is the story as it is, as well as the story underneath. The result is that he is able to bring out details of the text that many may not consider, resulting in a fresh and richer look at these passages that feels brand new.

The layout of the book is like any basic Biblical commentary: a few verses, followed by analysis. It makes for easy reference if one wants to read up on any particular story. Rather than present the material as overarching concepts interspersed with a few verses to back up his points, Snodgrass undertakes to tackle the whole book of Genesis, lingering with each piece, until all has been dissected. The result is a new take on familiar stories and theories as he wonders out loud about the many more stories contained in this book that a basic reading may be able to notice.

(I was sent a free copy of this book to review by the Speakeasy blogging book review network. My opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.)

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Making My Radio Debut

In late January, I wrote a post titled Five Really Good Reasons to Leave Your Church. I wrote it in response to an article that had appeared in Relevant Magazine a day or two before titled Five Really Bad Reasons to Leave Your Church. I figured that the original article needed a counterpoint; someone to give voice to the good reasons that I and others have had over the years for leaving churches.

I wrote it with the same attitude with which I write pretty much everything here: it'll reach a few dozen folks who have me queued up on their browser or who'll see my link to it on social media, and that'll be fine.

Well, something a bit bigger than that happened on that particular day. Among other things:

When someone like Rachel Held Evans is retweeting your article, it's bound to go a bit further than you're used to.

And it did. That post has over 4000 views and counting. I'm still amazed and thankful that so many people have read and appreciated it.

But there was still more. By the end of that week, I'd been contacted by someone from Moody Radio to appear on one of their programs to talk more about this article and to discuss the general issue of why people should or shouldn't leave churches. Given what prompted this contact, I'll likely be expected to give more of the "should" side.

So if you feel so inclined to listen in, here are the details. The show is called Up for Debate, and will broadcast on Saturday, March 29th at 8 a.m. Central (that'd be 9 a.m. Eastern). If you don't have a Moody affiliate in your area or it doesn't carry that particular program, you can listen to it online at the show's website. And if you have more important things to do that morning, it'll be archived on the site and on iTunes for you to listen to some other time.

I'll admit some nerves about this, for multiple reasons. But overall, it should be good. Feel free to tune in.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Small Sips Wants Cookies Shaped Like Keyboards

If only. Jan wonders out loud about what would happen if seminaries taught how to enact culture shifts in churches:
Seminaries have been described as General College for Professional Ministry. Students take Greek, Hebrew, Old Testament, New Testament, Church History, Theology, Christian Education, Practical Theology, Pastoral Care, and Preaching. This track has not changed much in the past 50 plus years.  
As I – and many others – have written, seminarians are being trained to serve churches that no longer exist. Or at the very least least, we need seminarians trained to do 21st Century Ministry which is totally different from 20th Century Ministry. Again, this is old news. But I believe that . . .  
Seminaries need to teach future professional ministers how to shift a congregation’s culture.
I learned a lot of great stuff in seminary. But the vast majority of it was academic stuff about the Bible, theology, and church history, along with a small handful of ministry courses. Some electives helped make up for this along with contextual education, but as far as transformational leadership or even basic church administration, there was next to nothing. The best education I got along these lines was my first few years of ministry and a lot of continuing education related to it.

I don't know the answer regarding how to change seminary curricula along these lines. It seems to me that a good amount of this work is contextual. But there still have to be some basic principles that could be taught to prepare people for a changing world.

Cute video is cute. A link to this video was in a recent UCC Daily Devotional, and it made me smile a lot:

the Scared is scared from Bianca Giaever on Vimeo.

Poke people's eyes out…with style. PeaceBang has really inspired me the past few years to up my game when it comes to professional wardrobe. She recently wrote a post about the importance of sharp edges in one's attire. After sharing a picture of Don Draper (see above), she writes this:
Note all the sharp edges? The triangular edge of the collar, the pointed edges of the lapel (you won’t find business people in round lapels). The clipped hair, the slightly squared toe of the shoes (not round). This all communicates “sharp” in a very literal way, and we need to be aware of that dynamic. This man is sharp, buttoned up, clean lines, discipline, elegance and speed. Even in his insouciant posture with a cigarette in hand, he radiates power, authority and professionalism. There isn’t one “off-duty” aspect to this outfit. He is literally ready for business. 
Power, authority and business are not bad values for a religious leader to have. We must stop thinking that they are, and identifying ourselves as having no connection to those qualities. Spiritual work involves power — if we don’t think we’re working on behalf of a powerful God, what are we doing in this work? Isn’t healing a powerful thing? Bet your bippy it is. Do you not wish to be a powerful preacher, a sharp leader, a person who can use authority well and wisely on behalf of the better world we imagine and work toward? If not, why the hell not? You see what I’m saying? “Can I get an AMEN up in here?” as RuPaul would say? 
How many clergy people do I see who are all soft edges, puffy haloes of frizzy hair, sloppy, dragging pants hems, elastic-band floppy skirts. Not one sharp element of their appearance.
One of her key points is in the second paragraph above, I think: the pastoral office has power that comes with it. Some pastors (myself included once upon a time) like to downplay that power through their wardrobe choices. This becomes an even bigger issue for younger clergy who choose to take this route: why give anybody any more ammo to question one's experience or qualifications by wearing jeans and a t-shirt?

So I'm in favor of pointy things. I wear my pointy wingtips, my pointy ties, my creased shirts, and my squared shoulders and am gonna be all like, "Hi, I'm your pastor. How can I help you today?"

#McConnelling. On a recent episode of The Daily Show, Jon Stewart urged viewers to take some footage of Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell obviously meant for SuperPAC purposes and adding your own music. So I went ahead and contributed a couple. First up is The Walking Dead theme:

And then there's the theme from Saved By the Bell: The College Years:

So, yeah. That was fun.

Misc. Jan with a little more on teaching culture shifts based on Harvard Business School's model. Gordon Atkinson shares a dream he recently had. He's blogging through Lent pretty regularly, and I recommend catching up on everything he's writing. Jamie on her son hacking her social media accounts, and then enacting payback. Pretty funny read. Rachel Held Evans is looking for your church stories.