My Workspace

You can tell a lot about a man by looking at his desk. See if you can spot the following items:

Thick academic looking books to make me feel smartQuirky nose-shaped tissue dispenserUSB powered Secret knock candy dispenser I built myself using Arduino technologyAncient clock radioSpare capo just in case someone shows up in my office needing to quickly change keysBooks I actually use stacked horizontally on top of books I rarely useRemote for my remotely controlled electrical outlet (completely unnecessary, but everything wireless is better right?)Bag of Skittles to refill candy dispenserSpoon for eating soup at my deskContigo coffee cup that will keep my coffee warm until about 11:34Powered USB hub with seven  USB connectionsWireless MouseChristmas lights with fade effect5-year-old laptop still awesomeBluetooth connected speaker streaming PandoraFamily pictures  I also have a mood light I built myself using Picaxe technology. It changes from red to green to blue and it is powered by th…

Let's Move Away From Religion

NPR did a story on how More Young People Are Moving Away From Religion. In the piece David Greene asks six "young people" (they're all about my age) about their move away from the religion they were raised with. I think you should go read or listen to the article. If you are not moving away from religion then you should think about why. If your religion is not meaningful or true then it is about time you give it up and look for things that are meaningful and true. My heart is moved toward those in my generation who are seeking answers and not quite getting them. I took the time this morning to consider how I would respond to the concerns of these six people. I share these thoughts now addressed directly to them.:

Thank you all for openly sharing part of your story with the world. I'm offering these responses not to offend or take advantage of your openness but simply to continue the discussion. None of you are alone in your doubts, but not everyone comes to the same …

FEAR in these Modern Times

Today is Protestant Reformation Day. I’ve also been reminded that it is Halloween and my friend Dave’s Birthday. On top of all that, there is a giant meteorological event being dubbed “Frankenstorm” and an impending presidential vote of evidently unheard-of historical consequence. I’d like to take this opportunity to address what I see as a major problem facing America (a.k.a. U.S.A.). This problem is fear.
I’ll start with the presidential race as an example of why fear is a big problem for us. This election is being trumpeted as a fork in the road for this country. I cannot count the number of times I’ve heard someone say something like, “This is the most important presidential election in our lifetime.”
Let’s pause and reflect on that logic for a moment. What is that phrase meant to portray? It implies that if the election goes the wrong way then the unthinkable will happen. Never mind that the unthinkable is completely undefined or that there are rarely concrete examples of what real…

What a Kroc!

I break my blogging silence only because I have found a piece of newsworthy information that I bet few other people would ever come across. If you are a religious statistic, let me be more realistic. Almost none of you are religious statistic enthusiasts. BUT, chances are 9 out of 10 that you have seen or heard religious statistics used in a discussion, a sermon, a classroom or maybe scratched into a public bathroom wall. I'm skeptical of 93.6% of all statistics I hear. It is not that I mistrust the statisticians. It is that I mistrust most people's interpretation of findings. Using a statistic in a quote generally leaves out all the *'s and †'s and other marks of exceptions, conditions, and caveats that accompany complete and well documented statistics.

The ARDA's 2010 data for Kootenai County is available on their website. I've poured over the 2000 data for a few years, so I was very interested to finally see the changes for 2010. …

Why Haven't We Planted Another Church Yet?

I'm working on a team within the Utah/Idaho Southern Baptist Convention exploring how to mobilize our churches to impact our region through new churches (we call it "church planting). Over the last decade there has been, among church and denominational leaders, an increased emphasis on church planting. Statistics show (trust me) that starting new churches is one of the best ways to reach more people with the Gospel. You can argue that point if you want to, but it is pretty clear no matter what numbers you look at that there is a need for more churches.

NorthStar was launched seven years ago. We were started with the vision of not just becoming another SBC church in a place where there are few, but to become a church planting church. Along the way that vision has never been lost, yet still we seem to have made little headway in fulfilling that vision. There are plenty of excuses I could offer, but forgetting the past I'd like to explore with honesty in introspection why we…

Life Goes On

I'm simply posting to assuage the guilt I feel over having not posted anything since October. I don't have anything striking to report. I'm not feeling especially creative. There are plenty of things going on, but I'm lacking the creative juices to get it typed out at the moment.

In short we've been very busy with traveling and suffering colds and whatnot. Life is absolutely beautiful in everything it brings to us and each day it is a blessing that life goes on.

In lieu of a proper post I'll do the next best thing and toss up a cute picture of some of my kids.

New Blog Design and Quick Update

Did I forget to mention that we have our certificate of occupancy? We'll we've had it for three weeks now. I've been busy getting settled in to a new office and trying to find all my stuff.

More to Come.