Archive for July, 2007

RPS championship

Monday, July 23rd, 2007

A couple of weeks back we were relaxing and surfing the channels right before bedtime and pause at one of the obligatory stops, ESPN. There was a cheering crowd, dramatic lights and announcers talking strategy so we tuned in a little longer. Then, out come 2 people to play Rock, Paper, Scissors. What!?!

Sure enough the 2 "engage in an epic battle" or so the analyst said. In the match one wins 2 out of 3 or something and moves on to the next round. Finally, it all came down to the last "throw" and the champion was declared, a trophy awarded and money won. I couldn't believe it, a child's game played by adults for lots of money on national television. Don't get me wrong a game of rock, paper, scissors is pretty fun and a good way to decide who gets the bathroom first or the last cookie, but a championship?

We are such a sports/entertainment culture! What child's game is next, tic-tac-toe,… Gorilla, Man, Gun,… hangman? What does that say about us as a culture? What does it communicate to our children? What does this say about our values? What about those in need around us? Can we afford to spend all of our time playing?  

where do you sit?

Thursday, July 12th, 2007

Do you ever think about that? Some times we don't have a choice we buy a ticket and that tells us where to sit. But what about when you do have a choice, do you think about it? A couple of experiences recently made me think about this.

One was on the subway in Washington DC, we would board the train and begin to look for a seat. Some times there were several seats open but often it was crowded. There might be a seat there and one over there and people wouldn't make eye contact very often. Then, on one of those rainy days around Houston we chose to go to the movies. We rounded the stairwell and looked up and over and there were people scattered everywhere in the middle and up to the top. Obviously those are the best seats and one has to get there early or deal with the pain in your neck from looking up at the wide screen for 2 hours. Then, there is church. Where and why do people sit where they sit in church.

I know we tend to be creatures of habit and so we sit in the same "geographical region" week after week. Also, as Baptists we habitually sit in the back unless there is food and then we sit as close to the food as possible. But I got to wondering what if we sat where we sat with other people in mind. Probably won't happen on the subway or in the theater but, what about church? Instead of hurrying and sitting in "our" seat we might sit somewhere to meet other members of the body. Instead of plopping down in the first seat on the aisle so you can get out to lunch before everyone try sitting in the middle leaving room for visitors or young parents who made it late because they got lost, didn't know the times or had an "emergency" on the way to church. Hey, at least no one will be stepping on your toes if you leave the aisle seats open. And maybe you'll be in a better mood for the rest of the service.

Try it, think about where you sit, look for a new angle or faces you don't recognize. Start something new with a group of friends. Make it a ministry opportunity. The best seat in the house just might be a seat you've never sat in next to people you don't know.

Escalators

Monday, July 2nd, 2007

I've just returned from Washington DC where I attend a conference check out http://www.buzzconference.com/ . It was a great time learning and I'm still digesting all of the info from decoding culture, creating buzz and innovative leadership. Check out host pastor Mark Batterson's blog on the National Community Church's web site about the "spy rules" to get an idea of the sessions, http://www.theaterchurch.com/ .

We used the Metro to get around town all four days and that was quite the experience. Every once and a while I would panic unable to find my fare card or experience that indecision of which train do I need to get on to get to my destination the conference or my hotel. After a day or two I felt like a pro.

However, I can't figure out why people run down and up the escalators. There seemed to be some in a constant hurry to get below ground only to sit and wait for the next train. Maybe they know something I don't.