Friday, November 19, 2010

Lots of bits and pieces

I seem to be starting a lot of blogs these days by saying how busy I am. Life's been full and lots of things have whizzed by with me going 'oh, I should blog about that... too late. Ah well.'

So, we've had a royal engagement (yawn). Obviously very happy for the couple, not happy for the distraction it will be from the real lives of people blighted our current government's fixation with changing things that would be better left alone, however.

And I've discovered some new music - Joseph Arthur. You've probably all been listening to him for years but I caught up with him a month or so ago. I kept hearing his song In the Sun accompanying a Davidoff ad and thinking that's a really good song but a bizarre soundtrack to naff perfume commercial. I was able to download a clutch of free tracks and found a few more really cheap and have been listening ever since. it's good stuff. He's a song writer with a nice turn of phrase and a great ear for a melody. The free stuff is still available from his website (here).

And I'm reading an interesting book by David Goertz, former editor of Leadership Journal, called Death by Suburb. I was drawn to the title because I thought it might diagnose what I was suffering from! It's quite good, but not the book I was expecting it to be.

I've been on the look out for stuff about ministry in the 'burbs and there isn't a lot (if you know of things, please share). Goertz's book is about how various spiritual disciplines can help prevent the suburbs sucking the life out of you. So it's quite helpful from that point of view. But there's not a lot of analysis about how the 'burbs work and what a church that's faithful to Jesus might look like among our manicured lawns and loft conversions.

I got news of yet another group church plant in our neighbourhood. I went to the web site and it seems to be just more of the same but intriguingly it kept telling me what the time were and that I'd be very welcome but there was no indication of where they were meeting which seemed a little curious. So, I'll not be going.

I'm having a blast teaching at Spurgeon's. It's such fun that I'm expecting someone to come into my lecture room and escort me out saying there's been a huge mistake and that a grown-up has to take my class now! My group of students are surprisingly eager for 8:30 on a Monday morning, ask really good questions and seem to be getting a lot out of the sessions. The proof of that will be when I mark their essays, of course.


Trevor Neill said...

I've just gone back and checked the bibliography for the Suburbia essay I wrote when doing 'Gospel in Context' at Bristol. If memory serves me right, the two most relevant and useful reads were a Grove Booklet, 'Faith in Suburbia' by Jane Gibbs and another booklet, 'Faith in Suburbia,' written by Malcolm Brown and published by Contact Pastoral Trust. They're both short but informative. I hope this helps.

simon said...

Thanks for that Trevor. I've got the grove booklet. I'll try to track down the one by Malcolm Brown