Clyde Berry and Jerry Butler hooked me during the Sojourners Workshop and they didn't even know it.
"Hooked you on what?" you ask.
My morning is now incomplete unless I get the Sudoku puzzle in the newspaper completed.
Based on typical traffic patterns, sometime tomorrow will mark hit number 25,000 on my blog. I'll be awarding a gift to the 25,000th visitor. My mom (#5,000) and my uncle George (#10,000) were previous winners, receiving books from Philip Gulley. Good luck!
I have found an article in the current issue of Time Magazine (November 6, 2006, Vol. 168, No. 19) very intriguing. Sonja Steptoe's article entitled "In Touch With Jesus" (p. 58-9) looks at the current shift in youth ministry from a thrill-seeking, entertainment-based strategy to one rooted more in Scripture and faith-building.
The subtitle to her article says it all: "Sugarcoated, MTV-style youth ministry is so over. Bible-based worship is packing teens in pews now."
The article underlines the postmodern shift that many sociologists and religious teachers have been speaking of -- the shift from a consumer-driven, entertainment-based ministry approach to one more grounded, more spiritual, more Biblical.
Steptoe notes how the exodus of young adults from the faith of their youth has served to alter the current course of youth ministry among churches and ministers aware of the poor results of "traditional" (i.e. entertainment-based) youth ministry. Consequently, "churches are trying to reverse the flow by focusing less on amusement and more on Scripture."
Reading Steptoe's article just reaffirmed to me one of the positive angles of the oft-lambasted Postmodern shift, i.e. the renewed interest among the current crop of high school and college students in all things spiritual. Reflective and meditative spirituality, as opposed to entertainment-based spirituality, is experiencing a revival.
For people like myself in a heritage rooted in the reflection and meditation of all things spiritual through God's Word, the harvest is indeed white.
Finally, tonight the 1-6 Fresno Bulldogs go into Potato land to take on this year's BCS fly-in-the-ointment, #14 ranked and undefeated Boise State.
Throughout America, non-BCS schools are rooting for Boise State to make the BCS (a #12 ranking assures them of that) because the payout will be shared among the non-BCS schools.
Fresno is a 25-point underdog in the game. But something tells me the fight the Bulldogs showed in LSU will carry them in this one. Maybe I've been drinking too much of the kool-aid spewed by the local sports talk guys, but I think Fresno has gotten the funk out of its system from the Utah State and Hawaii debacles.
Fresno keeps it close, but not close enough to win.