// saturday round-up (19/03)

Okay, I’ve been pretty unreliable at posting a Saturday round-up for the past month for a variety of reasons, but that means that this week it’s really a best of the past month. Which is good, as there’s some pretty excellent stuff on here.

As you’d expect, plenty on Rob Bell too, but I’ve tried to keep it to a minimum.

* * *

// 11 ridiculous things that keep youth groups from growing – Brilliant, brilliant insight from REyouth Pastor, which constitutes essential reading if you’re involved with youth.

// greatest church mural ever – I recently redecorated the youth room at our church. I wish I’d done this, though:

// london coffee – On the trip to New York City I took this month, I had the best cup of coffee that I’ve ever tasted. Honestly, it was so good it made me kind of emotional (it was at Everyman Espresso and is at 136 East 13th St, incidentally, but keep it quiet…)

There were no words. However, if you’re in the UK, I suspect jonnybaker’s map of London coffee hotspots will provide something comparable.

// youth ministry essentials – teaching students the story of the Bible – I love youthministry360, and this is part of the reason why. Since becoming a youth worker I’ve really rediscovered my evangelical roots, and this is a great help in planning a teaching programme…

// Rob Bell – I was actually at the live webchat Rob Bell did in New York and my chief thought was about how annoying he was, unable to give an answer in less than 500 words. That said, I’ve read Love Wins and although I don’t think its ambiguous writing style is going to help Rob’s critics – or some of the people reading – it does actually have some really decent insights in. I think it’s worth reading, but only if you can face the inevitable long (and possibly pointless) arguments that everyone will have with you as a result, regardless of your position.

Incredibly, though, there is a typo in the penultimate word in the whole book. And it’s a typo on the word “love”.

More interesting, perhaps, is the debate that’s been raging around it. Krish Kandiah’s thoughts in an article entitled “Grace, Truth and Rob Bell” are well worth look at, and as are Eugene Petersen, who, having endorsed the book, is unmissable. The summary that Tall Skinny Kiwi posted of the debate is a good overview of the varying positions and is a welcome invitation to avoid Al Mohler’s view on the whole thing. A great article from Jonathan Keck at Theology 21 is here and most of Jesus Needs New PR’s coverage has been pretty balanced too.

// to Ephesus and beyond – The lent reading series by John Stephenson has been thought-provoking this week, so worth looking at. I’m new to the blog though, so I can’t comment beyond that.

// vertigo – If you’re involved with youth work in Oxford in any way, please add this to your blogroll – your involvement in the community we’re trying to grow will really help especially because things are going to really kick off in the next few weeks.

// Friday – Oh, wow. This is something else:

* * *

And that’s all for today.

I’ll see you tomorrow for sunday music!

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