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Effective parody: How to make fun of people and get away with it

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My first blog post was posted on April 30, 2008. I’ve learned quite a bit since that first, horrible post–about writing and blogging–what works for me and what doesn’t. I think everyone has to decide their own formula based on trial and error.

One of the things I’ve really tried to avoid are posts that have the potential for intense debate or that may otherwise cause people to get stabby–with me or with other commenters. I’ve either accomplished this goal, or y’all are just too polite to tell me if I’ve offended you.

When my pastor forwarded me the following video, I immediately wanted to tweet the link. I think it’s absolutely hilarious. But then I got to thinking about it, and thought it might be better to present it here with a little disclaimer. By posting this video, I am not doing so as a way to bash big churches or how they present the gospel on Sunday morning. I’ve been to a few big church Sunday “productions” and while they’re not for everyone, if the church is teaching the Word of God, helping those in need and making disciples, it’s not for me to judge their tactics. I suppose we could debate that, but I’d rather not. Besides, as someone who has been involved in planning worship, I can tell you that when I laughed at this video, I did so while identifying with most of what I saw–the worship leader in particular.

Okay…Just so you know where I’m coming from. Without further ado, I present to you, Contemporvent!:

You may find that video less amusing than I did. I think the old saying “It’s funny because it’s true” applies mostly because I’ve seen (and been involved in) so many worship services EXACTLY LIKE THAT. But like I said, this was mostly just for fun.

For a most excellent description of how someone can feel lost within a big body of believers, I would highly recommend stopping by my friend Jake’s blog and reading Huge Church: Lost(ish) souls. He pretty much nails it.

Rescue

Happy Sunday everyone! We’ve been singing this song for the past little while at C3’s worship gatherings. I really love it, and I wanted to share it with you. Hope it blesses you as it has me.

You are the source of the life
I can’t be left behind
No one else will do
I will take hold of You

I need You Jesus
To come to my rescue
Where else can I go
There’s no other name by
Which I am saved
Capture me with grace
I will follow You

This world has nothing for me
I will follow You
This world has nothing for me
I will follow You

I love you, O LORD, my strength.
The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge.
He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

-Psalm 18:1-2

Leaving Holes

I know I promised an incessant ranting post, or another “Official versus Unofficial” post, but in case you haven’t noticed, I’m a bit undisciplined, and you’re not the boss of me. This blog is a bit like life, aka a giant box of chocolates: you never know what you’re going to get. On one visit you might bite into a delicious bit of wisdom, on another you bite into the one filled with toothpaste. You can decide for yourself which one this is.

(The previous paragraph was brought to you in part by Forrest Gump and Jim Gaffigan.)

Last night was rehearsal for our praise band. I like to blog about stuff we talk about at rehearsal sometimes. Mostly because I like it when Jeff says stuff like, “Wow. You really do pay attention when I’m talking. Who knew?”

We are a new band made up of people who have all played together before. That’s an important distinction. I think we had a very good, solid sound when we were all apart of another band with a fairly decent worship CD to prove it. But in order to move forward, we have to remind ourselves that how we used to do it, no matter how great it might have been, can sometimes hold us back from something new God wants us to discover. Incidentally, that applies to a whole host of experiences in and out of ministry. I feel a tangent coming on, so I’ll just move forward with what this post is supposed to be about…

If you’ve ever been part of a band, specifically a bar band, you know that the goal of playing in the band is typically to get yourself into a better band. You will look for holes within a song to fill up with your own personal awesomeness. This could be anything from a screaming lead guitar solo, an extended drum solo, or an incredibly annoying, warbley Mariah Carey descant. You look out for numero uno.

When you play for the glory and honor of God, the approach is the exact opposite. You begin to leave holes and give your band mates opportunities to fill them, keeping in mind that the biggest hole left should be the one that only God can fill. Otherwise, you’re just a glorified bar band. I hope this is making as much sense here as it does in my head. Maybe if I give you an example it will make more sense:

May we always allow a God-sized hole in our lives for Him to dwell. A very blessed Resurrection Sunday to you all.