All content on this blog from Tim McGhee has moved to the Tim McGhee Substack, and soon, Lord willing, will be found only on that Substack.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Effective Youth Ministry

Lance Latham had five founding principles for effective youth ministry:
  • Scripture Memory
  • The Gospel of the Grace of God
  • Leadership Development
  • Doctrinal Integrity
  • Good, Wholesome Fun

The Fifth Voice

"As a father pities his children, so the LORD pities those who fear him" Psalm 103:13, RSV

"Whither shall I go from thy Spirit? Or whither shall I flee from they presence?" Psalm 139:7, RSV

Why We Sing, Part 2
by Reggie M. Kidd

Song shapes our love for him and makes us "there" to his "thereness." That's why he asks, "Do you love me?" ... because he delights in our pleasure in him.

Barbership quartet singers claim that when their voices blend just right, they hear a "fifth voice." That aural illusion created by harmonics is, I believe, a divine whisper of something that is absolutely true of our singing when we gather in worship.

For the Bible says that in the church Jesus is singing hymns to the Father (Hebrews 2:12) and that, in fact, he is our Worship Leader (Hebrews 8:2, literally "Liturgist").

We sing so we can sing with Jesus.

When Paul tells his churches to "let the word of Christ dwell ... richly" among them by means of "psalms, hymns and spiritual songs" (Colossians 3:16 NIV), he's inviting them to do more than use music as a "warm-up" to the sermon.

The song is not ornamentation; it is participation in the very redemption of all creation. It plays its own role in God's showcasing his saving power before humans and angels (Ephesians 3:10).

From Key Life Magazine, Summer 2006 (21.2)

Embody Our Love

Why We Sing
by Reggie M. Kidd

What is it about singing that takes us beyond mere belief or behavior?

Think of singing as a language that allows us to embody our love for our Creator. Song is a means he has given us to communicate our deepest affections, to have our thoughts exquisitely shaped, and to have our spirits braced for the boldest of obediences. Through music, our God draws us deeper into a love affair with himself.

"Do you love me?" What a moment it is when Tevye sings these words to his wife, Golde in Fiddler on the Roof. Their oldest daughter has turned her parents' world upside down by telling them she plans to marry a man of her choosing rather than theirs.

Stunned at such world-shaking bravado, Tevye realizes he can no longer take anything for granted.

He looks at his wife of 25 years as though she were a stranger. He has to know: Have we simply been acting the part? With his musical question, "Do you love me?" he acknowledges a profound reality: acts of love are important to a relationship, but no less vital is the embodiment of that love in words.

No, it's not enough that for 25 years Golde has cooked her husband's meals, washed his clothes, milked his cows, shared his bed, given him children. To his poignant, "Then you love me?" Tevye needs to hear Golde's (superbly understated), "I suppose I do."

The song that passes between them bears a sacramental message: behind the cooking and the milking and the birthing, there is after all something exotic and mysterious.

That's the way it is with God and us. The singing makes our covenant relationship more than a mere contract. It is a mysteriously romantic intimacy as well.

From Key Life Magazine, Summer 2006 (21.2)

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Card Trick Video

Only the best magic card trick in the world!


Seth Godin makes an interesting point: "the idea that everyone values their time the same seems sort of backwards."

Super Size Me

Super Size Me
5-minute preview
full 2 hours available for purchase

The Rhythm of the Bush

Beatboxen Bush

Starting over

Seth Godin recently blogged about how "Major advertisers have the expectation that they don't need to keep reintroducing themselves" but "Unlike books and movies and speeches and sales pitches, it’s pretty obvious that blogs and websites don’t work that way."

Some people get it. "Some people have been with you for years. They understand your conventions, your shorthands and your biases. They know you’ve written a few books, appeared as a child actor in Star Trek or have a deep and abiding hatred for cats. You can drop a few hints and they get it."

Others don't get it. "Among your newbies are several people who won’t hesitate to send you an email, post a comment or leave in a huff. They don’t get it and they want you to know they don’t get it."

"Your inclination, if you’re at all like me, is to have that person’s voice in the back of your head every time you post an entry or design a page."

"Resist! Starbucks doesn’t start over every time someone walks in, and neither does your church."

It's his last comment I quoted there that I wanted to address. The church planters, and megachurch leaders are exactly the folks who did start over every time someone new walked in. How many churches today give page numbers for the verse in the church Bible. Knowing the Books of the Bible is a lost art these days.

Our churches have become professional milk dispensers. When is the church going to learn how to cater a gourmet meal?

10,668 days

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Search Engine Strategies

Danny Sullivan interviews Google's Eric Schmidt

10,667 days

Google Talk Usurps AOL

Google found a way to get me to download Google Talk once again. I've been using Miranda for a while (and still will--for all five of my IMing accounts), but now I need to have Google Talk to go with it.

Basically, the ability to send a voicemail to any address (Gmail email or otherwise) was too good. That's as good, if not better than being able to download voicemail from Vonage! And then the music playing status feature along with their new Music Trends is just too handy.

Of course, it would be nice if displayed their titles in a way that made more common for dividing title and artist.

Adding online notification is handy, too. Miranda doesn't have that. Google Talk may have had that for a while though.

What I find so intriguing about this development is not just that Google has far surpassed AOL in its products, but that it beat AOL in integrating two of AOL's own products: instant messaging and music playing! No, neither IMing nor MP3 playing started with AOL, but they currently own top players in both markets (AIM and Winamp), and yet never thought to tie the two together. And Google doesn't even have an MP3 player!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Weakening Political Currency

From today's First Read: "Over the next two days, listen for what Bush might say to address the list of traditional economic 'truths' which, to many Americans, no longer seem quite so true:
  • that if you work hard, you'll get ahead;
  • that health insurance will keep you from going bankrupt over medical costs;
  • that owning a home is a means to financial security;
  • that real estate and stock investments always increase in value;
  • that Social Security will always be there;
  • that your company retirement fund is safe; and,
  • that your children will face a brighter future than you.
Until the Administration focuses on these concerns, it seems unlikely that Americans are going to see eye to eye with them on a strong US economy."

Of course, we should also keep in mind:Tim
10,665 days

Art in London

Early influences of security:

Playing with Security

The Millennium Bridge:

The Millennium Bridge

Other cool photos:

Marks and Spencers in the UK vs. Whole Foods in the US:

Marks and Spencers

Tango's Trip

London Tube Map Light Table

Only £1500!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

48% of Democrats support Bush candidate

"Commonwealth Conservative ... analysis on last week's Democrat Senate primary in Connecticut: 'the Bush Candidate Got 48% in a Dem Primary.'"

"Democrats are spinning the election result as a referendum on President Bush" and "the person they've equated with him drew 48% of primary-voting Democrats. In the Northeast."

Democrats vs. Moderates

And that was before terrorism barged back into the headlines.

666 miles from Washington

"Nashville, TN--666 miles outside the Beltway."

Can I Get A Map With That?

Human-sized chess board

"A human sized chess board in the back patio of the Wild Duck Inn."

London Airplanes, Heathrow Airport

Like most folks who don't fly regularly, the news of the foiled attacks in London simply made for encouraging news of many lives saved.

However, for many who do fly, or were "on holiday" on the UK, their lives were still turned upside down for a day or two. Here's one man's inside look at what happened.

10,664 days

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Ironies in sharing words

"Why are we so quick to gossip and share juicy details that can seriously harm a person, yet we never want to hear how a movie ends?"

priorities: the first loser

Tuesday, August 8, 2006

How much do you cost to count?

If you are an American, in four years, the government plans to spend $36 to count you.

Does it really cost that much to develop a database, print a form, drop it in the mail, get it back and enter it online? Or, to have a Web site up for people to enter their information online?

Either that, or are we just footing the bill for the Census Bureau to go door to door, run TV ads and file "emergency" spending paperwork?

One way or the other, Tom Coburn, junior senator from Oklahoma plans to find out:

Coburn Opposes Additional Money for the Census Bureau

FYI, the $36 head count figure came from the $11.3 billion cost estimate that Coburn cites for the 2010 census, and current projections of an increase in population to 310 million in another 1,242 days.

10,656 days

Friday, August 4, 2006

511: Traffic and Weather

Central Florida 511 system nation's most used

"National trends show that 511 systems in high population states such as Florida and California are used by daily commuters for traffic information on roads such as Interstate 4, while in the Midwest and West, the 511 systems are used for severe weather alerts."

Coke, Soda, Pop, Sprite?

OK, let me just say, someone had way too much time on their hands for this one.

Coke, Anyone?

I'm all about the water or the Sprite. :)

10,652 days

Thursday, August 3, 2006

Commuter rail coming to Central Florida

"Trains could begin service between DeBary and Orlando by 2009, ahead of the start of the $2.3 billion reconstruction of Interstate 4 between Kirkman Road and State Road 434. The final route into Osceola County has a scheduled completion date by 2013."

Governor announces deal to bring rail service to Central Florida

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