Aug 312006

I’ve finished my tenure at the longest job I’ve held to date, and ended an almost 6-year run with American Bible Society. (Grateful for the opportunity to participate with its mission to distribute the Word of God around the world and to provide for my family needs along the way. I’ll miss the good people.) Since aus_chick revealed it via her Xanga blog, thought it better for me to go on record than to let half-baked rumors abound. My good co-workers sent me off with a hibachi farewell lunch and photos courtesy of aus_chick. Now I’ll be working at 50% capacity and get a sabbatical for the other 50%. One thing I gave up by not working as a pastor is that paid sabbatical deal that many(?) pastors get.

I’ll be making a road trip up north past New York City to some place called Fishkill this weekend to join an Asian American Leadership Roundtable and to (ironically) teach a workshop about career choices. I’ll meet David Park and Peter Ong there for the first time face-to-face, along with Greg Jao, Anna Lee, Paul Tokunaga, Lisa Yu, and Glennis Lo. David, thanks in advance for flying up here to DC from Atlanta, and being my driving companion on the round trip. We’re leaving our laptops behind, so no liveblogging.

Aug 292006

Catalyst Conference has become the big deal event for charging up next generation leaders, coming ’round on maybe 10,000 in attendance? Tomorrow is the last day for early registration for tickets as low as $239 each. Plus, get a free Sweet Tea from Chick-fil-A. [ht: Catablog]

Or, just sign up for their weekly free XBOX drawing. They’ve gots to be insane to just give those away!

I’ll see if I can finesse a blog-driven marketing special, and get you all a discount code for bloggers. The organizers are already spending marketing dollars on all kinds of other channels, but I don’t see one (yet?) for the grassroot word-of-mouse viral blogosphere. Andy Stanley probably doesn’t read my blog, but I know he reads pomomusings. Maybe he get a rate code setup just for bloggers and let’s see the proof in the pudding!

Aug 282006

I’ve heard that Tim Keller (Pastor of Redeemer New York) has a new book to be published about what he calls “defeater beliefs,” but I can’t recall specifically which sermon(s) in which he deconstructs our culture’s prevalent thinking and points people to the ultimate in Christ. A regular website visitor asks for help this way:

I’m looking for a Tim Keller mp3 to give to some post-modern friends. Tim’s article on defeater beliefs is what I have in mind, but I’d like to get an audio version that particularly addresses the unbeliever. Any suggestions?

Add a comment if you can help. Thank you!

Aug 282006

What a full day! So after my sermon yesterday morning, I needed to get myself rehydrated. Stopped by the Tenleytown Whole Foods and grabbed a bottle of Naked Juice Mighty Mango. Then an afternoon nap, leftovers for dinner, and get our monthly skypecast going. I looked around for a way to record the skypecast, and there are a handful of softwares out there you’d have to pay for to record. PrettyMay was the most generous in its trial/demo version, and allows you to record up to 30 minutes for free. So that’s what I used.

We recorded our 2nd Asian American Emergents skypecast! Our turn out has doubled, this time including Emergent Asia’s Sivin Kit, as well as Ben Pun, David Park, Peter Ong, Tim Liu, and Theo Wong.

You can listen in to part 1 and part 2 online. Part 1:

Part 2:

I felt good that I’m no longer the only Asian face interested in the emergent conversation. It’s also fascinating to hear how the emerging church conversation in Malaysia started up and has many similarities (far as I know) to how it started in the US. It really is best labeled as a conversation.

And, Tim had these great thoughts as a closing remark:

In my experience, AsAm churches tend to be even more conservative in terms of practice than American churches. They tend to be slower to adapt to changes and are rarely forerunners in ministry innovation. Many people (such as Dan Kimball) see the emerging church as a response to the contemporary worship movement. But in my (Chinese) church, we are barely contemporary. We still have those who feel that drums are of the devil. So I think the Asian churches maybe just need more time to catch up. Also, I wonder if anyone else notices the overlaps between the postmodern culture and the Eastern/Asian worldview? For example, preaching in narrative and in non-linear flow of thought is normal for Asians. When I preach to the 1st genearation adults in my church, they love to hear stories and narrative. Its already part of how they communicate. Another example is the emphasis on community and relationships in the Emerging church. Its already is a central part of asian culture. So in a lot of ways, I could see the AsAm church very welcoming to some aspects of the emerging church if it is presented in the right way.

Aug 242006

Rick Warren makes another circuit of media junkets after his trip around the world over 48 days to 14 countries. Fox News had a TV special on him this past Sunday and is selling the DVD for $19.99. [ht: MondayMorningInsights] Fox was good enough to allude to the connection between Rick Warren’s bestselling book published by Zondervan, and Fox Network, both owned by Rupert Murdoch. Video promos for that special here and here pulled salient sound bites. Plus this older Fox News interview with Rick from 2/12/06.

And last week, Rick Warren was on Charlie Rose for a longer interview, talking in sound bites:

Then, using some video search engines, I found a local CBS segment “Evangelical Author Vows To Join Fight Against AIDS” (8/20/06), ABC News’ Rick Warren’s Purpose (2/3/06), A Call to Churches for Aid [Hurricane Katrina] (9/2005). And, these unofficial videos on YouTube: Rick Warren in the Philippines 2006 (2:25) from CBN News; Rick Warren in South Korea (raw video from 1 of 100,000 attendees; 3:04); and “What does it mean to be a follower of Christ,” part 1 and part 2, in under 15 minutes. Best sound bite in the whole mix: “I don’t understand the chemistry of digestion, but that doens’t stop me from eating steak” (at 3:08).

Official videos: from Saddleback — The Stewardship of Influence — Using What You’ve Got (5:12); from– What Does It Mean To Follow Christ? 2 versions: Hi or Low. Plus, see 5 videoblogs via Rick Warren’s Travel Log about his Asia trip. And 20 minutes with Rick Warren at February 2006′s TED conference (Technology, Entertainment & Design).

As an aside, someone just had to take a dig, over at Christ Is Our Pattern, Not Rick Warren.

With our media-saturated culture and shortened attention span, sound bites + slogans communicate best to the masses (and decision-making executives too). There’s not much room or time left for thoughtful reflections and verbosely written nuanced texts. Now, I’m out of time, and I need to take every spare moment to work on my sermon for this coming Sunday, on time, titled “Having the Time of Your Life.” Will try to have I did get it recorded and you can listen to the audio here.

Aug 192006

The 2nd Asian American Emergents Skypecast will happen on Sunday night, August 27th, at 9:00pm Eastern / 8:00pm Central / 6:00pm Pacific. Please join us for some cordial conversations, even if you’re in Mountain time or in Malaysia. (Skype me if you run into tech issues.)

These 3 questions and 1 article will be our conversation starter:

And for a starter reference point on what is the emerging church and Emergent, we’ll refer to Scot McKnight’s Emerging Movement: Future or Fad? (PDF; cache) that was written for the Evangelical Covenant monthly newsletter. [ht: TSK]

Aug 162006

I’ve been working overtime getting my wife Rachelle‘s website built, waiting on an official launch. It’s live and viewable as an unofficial preview right now as we speak. Yes, it’s WordPress-powered. Rachelle’s gained a new appreciation for the complexities (and limitations) in building a website. We’ve posted a buncha images of her artwork, and their beautifully browseable using Lightbox JS.

One last ingredient is to add a contact form plugin. I’m deliberating between intouch, Ryan Duff’s WP-ContactForm, PXS Mail Form, DagonDesign’s Secure Form Mailer, and WSR Contact Form. And then the wait for her sign off and approval to make an official announcement and get business cards printed up, etc. Have to use traditional media to drive traffic to a website, b/c a website is not “build it and they’ll come.”

[sidenote 8/22: Ahmed Farooq dropped me a note about iBox, which is similar to Lightbox but uses no external JavaScript and supports non-JavaScript users. And then, there's ThickBox and GreyBox too; these can display HTML pages in a pseudo-pop-up window as well as images.]

Aug 142006

My Starbucks‘ summer drink of choice has been the iced venti with room Americano, and I’d usually add a swig of Half & Half + 1 packet of Sugar in the Raw. I can’t believe the many hot drinks that are still being served into the summer, but to each their own. But, just last week, discovered a new drink on the handwritten blackboard by the barista’s espresso machine: iced cafe con leche (pronounced: lay-chay). Delicious! More milky and sweeter than my usual, plus a hint of cinnamon. Reminds me of the cinnamon dolce latte, but icy cold. Gothamist and Gawker noted the new drink during a 2-hour New York City promo 10 days ago.

[update : whew, my iced venti with room Americano doesn't count as a controversial ghetto latte]

I was tagged by Goodmanson to talk about my favorite books. I’ve read more than my share of books, easily past the 2 books a year that the average American reads, but I haven’t been reading books lately, so I’m going to pass on jumping in with this meme. At least I was tagged in good company, with the likes of Mark Driscoll. :)