Hi Five Oakers, The weekend is here and there are a few things I want to share with you:
Tim is preaching this weekend as we continue our series in Acts. Here's what he says about the sermon
As you read the account of Paul's life in Acts and his letters to churches, you can't miss the incredible warmth and depth of his relationships with other believers. I think we all long for those kinds of friendships. But is that realistic - or even possible - for us today?
As we look at Acts 20-21 this weekend, I hope you'll see that there's nothing quite like the kind of friendships that we can have in Christ, and that the obstacles to getting there aren't as insurmountable as we may think.
Ruth Moon on "Segregated Surveys: How Politics Keeps Evangelicals White"
You can disbelieve in God, never go to church, and still identify as "evangelical" in most polls. But if you're black and evangelical, you literally don't count.
Susan Wunderink on "A Survey Can Make You Less Moral: What behavioral economics has to do with scary statistics"
Research shows that statistics have a life of their own. They’re not just reports on what is happening; they change what is happening. ...Basically, people tend to move closer to the behavior they perceive as normative, whether it's worse or better than their current behavior. This is called social proof. When people change for the worse, it's called a boomerang effect.
One More Thing
Australian pastor and author Mark Sayers has been known for missional innovation but has this to say (in a recent interview) about the kind of leadership needed in today's culture, a culture which eats away at foundations and leaves individuals without a place to stand:
You need leaders who identify the safe rocks on which to stand—the biblical foundations of wisdom, faith, justice, holiness, family, and communal life. You need leaders who can differentiate between the genuine prophetic biblical voice, which calls culture back to God, and the deconstructive impulse within modernity, which wants to return to the chaotic and primal. In a culture powered by individualism, you need leadership rooted in Jesus’ sacrifice upon the cross. And in a time when people either run from power or abuse it, you need the servant leadership modeled by Christ.