Sunday, July 05, 2009

Emergent Flow Chart

HT Pyromaniacs
Think this is true? I think it depends on who you ask, but a lot of the leaders I think hold this pattern.

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posted by Out Of Jersey | 10:51 AM | 6 comments

Thursday, June 11, 2009

A Brief History Of Labor

In a day
there was earth,

the bright vision,
seeing land
and sea

and all the
creatures in them.
In a day

the second labor,
pains and cries.
The work of hands

built a tabernacle
to be in the presence.
A home to hear
the later psalms

or a place to remember
the work of hands
and rest for a day.


posted by Out Of Jersey | 7:42 PM | 2 comments

Monday, March 02, 2009

Give Us A Shot

One of the many things I enjoy about my church is the fact I can be myself. No more putting on airs, no more pretending to be so pious, and no more lying about feeling good when I don't. When I first started to attend a lot of things caught me off gaurd:

1) My pastor actually told me how he was really feeling when I asked.

2) Several members of the church were just as geeky as I am and I finally had some people in the church who not only knew Dr. Who and B Star G, but actually enjoyed the shows.

3) The elders would go to a local bar after their weekly meetings.

I think it was #3 that really threw me for a loop. I know a lot of churches have people who enjoy to have a beer or two, but are so afraid to admit it. In fact a good friend of mine likes to go up to people he goes to church with when he runs into them at a bar so they can know they are not the only ones and can finally come out of the closet. That being said, my church also doesn't flaunt the fact we enjoy a few beers. We also support several AA groups to help those who do struggle with the addiction. I am giving this little introduction because of a few videos I saw recently both using shot glasses as a form of reaching the lost. There are two videos that are pretty interesting. I know in the past I wrote a post about how sad I felt watching a bunch of college kids at pub I visited to hear my friends band perform. Sorry, I am way too lazy to actually look for it to link back to it. In short, I was watching a bunch of twenty-somethings seeking connections in the most negative manner imaginable. None of what they were experiencing was real. I never was in the bar culture even now let alone when I was their age so it became pretty obvious to me that this was a ministry opportunity which I had no idea how to fill. I don't see these "Give Us A Shot" ministries as bad things. I am curious to see how successful they are.

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posted by Out Of Jersey | 10:43 AM | 2 comments

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Guild

I am a huge fan of Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog. I am such a fan that one night when my friends came over we watched it several times with the musical commentary. I am also proud to say that I have gotten several of my other friends into it who aren't normally geeks like I am. It turns out that Felicia Day has her own web show called The Guild about a group of on-line gamers. Sadly it is all too accurate of a portrayal of gamers. I know people like this who are completely out of touch with reality and are more capable of talking through a web-mic than in real person. And it's very, very funny. Give it a watch. Most of episodes are only 5 minutes long. One of the characters also has a web show called Gorgeous Tiny Chicken Machine show about a Japanese tv host which is also very funny.

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posted by Out Of Jersey | 5:04 AM | 2 comments

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Lorine Niedecker

I am long over due pulling Lorine Niedecker's collected poems off the shelf. The fact there is a new documentary about this wonderful poet only makes me all the more learn about her. Though her works stand for themselves and she had powerful friends like Cid Corman and William Carlos Williams she remained an outsider. While most authors these days go right from graduate school into various teaching programs she lived a life as an outsider in the poetry world. Heck, she was an outsider in the real world as well. She hid from academia, for whatever reason, and lived in poverty on a small island making a living as a maid. That seems almost incongruous to the literary life. If someone were to try that today they would die in obscurity. To be a poet (or any other sort of writer or artist for that matter) and pretty much avoid readings, writing seminars, and awards is a form of publishing suicide which most publishers won't stand for. Yet, it's one that sounds very attractive to me. As I figure out my role as a Christian and a poet I almost shun that typical literary life. Perhaps someday I'll get my MFA and settle in to some university job teaching kids about rhyme and meter and how our experiences can help us to shape humanity and seek out the truth in life we are aching to touch. My desire to seek God in such a silly and little way seems to override that desire to have people come up to me at a reading to get an autograph.

I knew a clean man

but he was not for me.

Now I sew green aprons

over covered seats. He

wades the muddy water fishing,

fall in, dries his last pay-check

in the sun, smooths it out

in Leaves Of Grass.

He'sthe one for me.


The death of my poor father

leaves debts

and two small houses.

To settle this estate

a thousand fees arise—

I enrich the law.

Before my own death is certified,

recorded, final judgement


taxes taxed

I shall own a book

of old Chinese poems
and binoculars

to probe the river


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posted by Out Of Jersey | 5:11 AM | 0 comments

Monday, February 09, 2009

Hipster Jesus

A friend of mine sent me an article about New Calvinist uber-pastor Mark Driscoll. I have to admit my knowledge of Mark is very limited. In fact I got him confused with the emergent movement, but after reading the article I remembered he was part of New Calvinism which, for some reason, is attracting 20-somethings like mad. I attend a Calvinist church so it does suprise me that in a world of relativism to see young heads going to a church that has certain ideas and theology that can be hard to grasp or to wrap your mind around. It seems to work so good for him. I know when I was their age I would have loved to go to a church like Mars Hill where you are likely to find people who bought the newest Tom Waits album and can quote "Clerks". When you are young who wouldn't want to be with like minded people that you share a lot in common with? At my current church if I try to bring up my giddy joy that Over The Rhine is coming to a local theater most people's eyes glaze over, but they know what they believe and why they believe it. I can't tell you how many times when I made a statement people much smarter than I have asked, "So that's what you believe? Why?" Why do I have the feeling I wouldn't get such a challenge from Mars Hill? And to be around so many fellow hipsters sounds kind of annoying to me. I do not think I could handle week after week being around so many people who are just like me. I'd miss out on the encouragement, ribbings, and fun that I have with the men and women of my church who are, thank God, not like me in the least. Plus, I am tired of people trying to be controversial just for the sake of being controversial. I am no longer impressed by people trying to shake the tree to create a cult of personality. The best pastors and teachers I have ever experienced weren't particularly dynamic they just love the Lord and desire to equip and edify the body through scripture. Lastly, he has way too much power. To have one person be in so much control of a church that they can tell you to shun somebody just because they question some of your ideas is ridiculous. That is how the PC(USA) went from being a church steeped in scripture to the liberal mess it is today. In fact, a church I attended imploded for that very reason. Too much power given to a few who forgot the needs of the church. Perhaps Mark offers a lot of good things to the Christian buffet? I do not know. I am curious to read his blog and see what he has to say.

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posted by Out Of Jersey | 5:17 AM | 5 comments

Monday, February 02, 2009

Weekly Geeks: Passion

I like The Weekly Geek Challenge this time around. It's all about passionate about besides books. It's also kind of a difficult question for me to answer since most of what I am passionate about is in some way book related like keeping journals, writing poetry, and collecting autographs.

There is one thing that really comes to mind that since coming out has really become a big part of my recent life. Last year a little show came out called The Big Bang Theory. I have to admit I was a bit late on the uptake with this show. I don't know why since it seemed to have everything I was looking for in a show. A show about brilliant minds, many references to geek culture, and it is funny. After watching it for a few weeks I wondered if the producers had followed me around in highschool taking notes of me and my buddies. This show brought back so many fond memories of my days hanging out in my one friends basement playing D & D every weekend, going to Star Trek movies with a Klingon Dictionary, and all the other geekdoms of my life. In fact, it helped me to get back into the things that I loved so much during that time that, for one reason or another, I had gotten out of over the years. I am fortunate that I have friends I can still geek out over as we get giddy as a school girl over the next episode of B Star G or the new Watchmen movie that is coming out. It also makes me feel good that, at least for now, people do get who we are. Here are some good clips.
Superman.... I can't tell you all the times my friends and I would argue like this. I remember won time getting really heated with a few friends over who would win in a fight between Captain America and Batman.

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posted by Out Of Jersey | 11:19 AM | 9 comments