Review of The New Influencers

Gillin, Paul. The New Influencers: A Marketer's Guide to the New Social Media.  Quill Driver Books, 2009. ISBN: 9781884956942. Meet the Author Paul Gillin has been reporting on the impact of technology and media for the past twenty-five years.  He is the author of Secrets of Social Media Marketing (2008).  Currently, Gillin advises marketing executives and CEOs on how to turn the new social media to their advantage. For more information visit his blog or business. Book Read More …

Review of The New Rules of Marketing & PR

Scott, David Meerman.  The New Rules of Marketing & PR: How to Use News Releases, Blogs, Podcasting, Viral Marketing & Online Media to Reach Buyers.  John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2009. ISBN: 978-0-470-37928-8. Meet the Author David Scott Meerman is an award-winning marketing strategist, best-selling author, conference speaker and seminar leader who is best known for writing this book:  The New Rules of Marketing & PR (published first in 2007, then updated in 2009).  Previously Read More …

Review of Flickering Pixels

Hipps, Shane.  Flickering Pixels: How Technology Shapes Your Faith.  Zondervan, 2009. ISBN: 978-0-310-29321-7. Meet the Author Shane Hipps is a pastor with a unique perspective on technology and media.  In his first career he was a strategic planner in advertising.  Shane walked away from that profession and entered seminary when he realized he was spending his life perpetuating the consumer culture that was inconsistent with his beliefs.  Since 2005, he has served as lead Pastor of Read More …

Ministry and Modern Technology

In the July/August edition of Collide, Stephen Presley writes a thought provoking article: A Biblical Definition of Ministry in a Technological Age.  Presley defines ministry as "a personal commission from God that labors toward the reconciliation of others to Christ through the gospel."  He suggests it includes both personal and interpersonal elements, but that while it involves people its purpose is communicating the gospel.  As technology continues to change and is utilized more by Read More …

Middle School Students and Mission Work

Last week I had the privilege of participating in a Week of Hope alongside a group of eighteen middle school students and two adults from my church. We were a part of a larger team of eighty-seven participants (middle school students, high school students, and adults) from five churches across the country affiliated with three different denominations.  This short-term mission opportunity is open to middle and high school students across the country and is facilitated by Group Workcamps.  So Read More …

Review of Who Stole my Church?

MacDonald, Gordon.  Who Stole my Church? What to do When the Church You Love Tries to Enter the 21st Century.  Thomas Nelson, 2007.  ISBN: 978-0-8499-2153-7. Meet the Author Gordon MacDonald is a well respected pastor, teacher, and author.  In thirty-five years of pastoral ministry, MacDonald's served five congregations.  He has been an adjunct professor at Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary for many years and is also a sought after speaker.   MacDonald has written more than a dozen books Read More …

What is the Purpose of a Sermon?

Scot McKnight's latest blog entry invites discussion: What is the Purpose of a Sermon?  McKnight, a New Testament scholar as well as a prolific author and blogger, asks the question as he follows those who are live blogging about a preaching conference at Mars Hill with Rob Bell, Pete Rollins, and Shane Hipps. So What? Share your answer to the question: What is the purpose of a sermon?  For me a part of the answer must be in the so what.  If I hear what sounded like a great sermon, but Read More …

Review of What Americans Really Believe

Stark, Rodney.  What Americans Really Believe.  Baylor University Press, 2008.  ISBN: 978-1-60258-178-4. Meet the Author Since 2004, Rodney Stark has been a University Professor in Social Sciences and the Co-Director of the Institute of Studies of Religion at Baylor University.  Stark is an American sociologist of religion who previously taught for over thirty years at the University of Washington.  To learn more visit his personal website or see his curriculum vitae.   Book Read More …

To Twist or Not to Twist

In the July/August edition of Youth Worker Journal, Patton Dodd wrote an article about twisting Scripture in Children's Ministry.  He and his wife taught Sunday School for a four and five year old class and were surprised to learn that the lesson on John the Baptist instructed them to "teach the main point that John the Baptist told the crowds, 'Jesus is God's Son,' as John the Baptist did, and telling them that they, like John, are supposed to carry that message into the world."  The surprise Read More …

Obama’s New Church

Have you ever wondered how a President selects which church to attend?  Apparently many more people are concerned with what church Obama chooses than the selection or discernment process leading to that choice.  Back in February, Andrew Santella wrote, "Since before Election Day, Washington pastors have been lining up to invite the first family into their flock, and outlets from PBS to the Wall Street Journal have taken their turn handicapping the many contending congregations. Despite all of Read More …