Archive for the 'bible' Category


faith in action

faith in action
New Faith in Action Study Bible Now Available
i find it interesting that there are more resources on the rise advancing justice and mercy and they seem to be really well-designed. i’m very wary of hyped and marketed
christian goods so i’m not saying that you should go out and buy this or not but if you’re looking for a new bible maybe it’s worth a peek.

what do you think?

World Vision and Zondervan have worked together to develop a tool to help Christians understand God’s heart for the world. The Faith in Action Study Bible is a tool for applying God’s word to modern life.

The 2,336-page publication is designed to deepen a person’s understanding of God’s Word and cultivate a thoughtful, Christian lifestyle in a world challenged by violence, injustice, poverty, and conflict.


design for all ::. 101

we were designers. friends even, yeah, some of us were. we walked on campus together as though we were something. but history was in the making. we quickly became then the most well recognized class in the school’s history leaving our mark with our names inscribed on the sterile halls of a brand new facility. i believe it’s still there. we probably were the last class of a certain mold. hours of art history and theory, aesthetics and beauty, form and function. lectures. critiques. deconstruction. integration. of course we also fulfilled our core requirement studies in humanities, science, and english. but we were painters, sculptors, filmmakers, architects, artists – designers. we were a new breed, traditionally trained in the old school and part of the forging of a new era of design. the swell of the digital age arrived in our time. we helped bring about a shift in the visual landsape as well as in the economy. now design is everywhere and everything. thanks to target there’s a new manifesto declaring design for all. you prolly have seen the commercials.

make it better, more fun, more exciting, easier. make it fly, make it soar, let it take your breath away. that’s what good design is all about. transforming the ordinary into something better….maybe even something extraordinary.

now i’m still not sure how i feel about target corp and their campaign but they sure merchandise some pretty nice things and have made some good investments like acquiring two of my choice designers from way back, mossimo and mizrahi. michael graves is another story. i really like that they carry method products. i’ll shop at target over that bully walmart anyday. and don’t even let me start about the injustices in that company.
i have been spending a lot of time recently thinking about art, design, society. my background consists of fine arts, landscape architecture, and urban planning all of which i’ve integrated under design. these things deeply influence my design process. i guess i’m part of what they call the cultural creatives. all this said gives reason to why i’m so wildly interested in the gates in central park, nyc by christo and jean-claude

the gates.central :: 2.26.05
i’m posting about all this (and probably moreso…read on) because i think it’s time to understand the realm of art, design and things that are misunderstood like the gates and its place in our lives. i was talking with a student over the weekend who shared his dislike of modern art. he, like many don’t like modern art because it doesn’t make sense to them. i understand that. but many believe that what doesn’t make sense of course is not worth considering.

when i was on the administration at a new local christian college we had a riff with some older students over the fine art prints that were being chosen to be displayed in the buildings. they wanted real “christian art” over reproductional prints of impressionists and other modern painters like, wassily kandinsky, who was deeply interested in spirituality as reflected so in his works. you see, “christian art” are prints from well known nice christian folk whose works of ‘light’ you can find in a jesus books and gift stop or at your upper-middle class malls.

here’s my take on the gates : : they’re supposed to be personally experienced. all 7,500 16-feet high gates are to be taken as a single piece like the multiple strokes in a painting. now the gates are a gift to the city, entirely self-funded by the artists themselves. it is a greatly profound work and a beautiful extravagant gift to the city and to the world. its bright colored fabrics are outspoken in this cold season as they meander throughout the park. they demonstrate the veins of the park as throngs of people from all over the world, from all walks of life, pass through them like lifeblood. you can spend time thinking about that visual if you dare. jean-claude believes that the world is his canvas. he has brought his art out from the privacy of a studio or a museum to the outside. that’s a shift that we are experiencing not just in the art of the 21st century but in all of life. we need to see that we are all a part of life in this world, in this city. this artpiece is helping to create community. as christians our lives are his handiwork. he will build his church. we are failing to be lovely and accesible. we fail to be extravagant and even flashy. we fail to give to the world. we fail to annoint the head and feet of Christ and do a beautiful thing unto him.

to me design is not just about selling something which i feel many do focus on, particularly in christian retail. sure design can be commercially viable. heck i need to pay the bills. this is my design manifesto: good design is thorough and lasting. it serves many purposes and many people. it can be flashy or even unrealized but it ought to integrate all of life to serve all of life. in a sense, we all need to be designers.

Continue reading ‘design for all ::. 101’


the message on crack

why i love eugene peterson ::.
i love eugene peterson…really i do. and i appreciate his work on the message because he addresses questions of what/who is this book really for especially for seminarians losing their minds in greek and hebrew.

however, there are just some passages in there that just crack me up or just sounds like it’s on crack. here are just a few that i’ve come across recently ::

Keep up your reputation, GOD;
Forgive my bad life; It’s been a very bad life. [psalm 25:11]

He also healed people of their diseases and of the bad effects of their bad lives. [matthew 4:23]

Jesus asked him, “Tell me your name.”
He replied, “My name is Mob. I’m a rioting mob.” [mark 5:9]

of course there are some very insightful and vivid passages:
Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults–unless, of course, you want the same treatment. That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging. It’s easy to see a smudge on your neighbor’s face and be oblivious to the ugly sneer on your own. [matthew 7:1]

so with that i’ll stop now


antiheroic ../ part two point o/ ass u me ::.

antiheroic ../ part two point o/ ass u me ::.

we assume too much. reading the bible is difficult for many because often we approach the text assuming we know the stories already.

this week i agonized over some rather distressing faults in my life, my husbandry, my leadership…the list can go on. i wondered how, why God would ever use someone like me. i want to stop my fruitless neurotic praying, “oh God, here i am again…forgive me” and pray for more important things.

i was reminded of samson, israel’s ancient judge. almost instantly we remember his great strength and even greater faults. but we find him at the honor roll recorded in hebrews 11 where he is commended…for his faith. we need to think deeper about the significance of that. the truth is, yeah he did do some rather stupid things but there’s something about the man’s faith. his finest moments attest to the glory of God. if we are not so quick to assume easy categorizations of the more ‘frowned down upon’ characters in the bible, we may find that we have much more in common with them than we would like to think.

the story of samson is really the story of israel recapitulated and focused through the life of one man. he was a holy man, a nazirite, set apart at birth, but he wanted to be like other men, just as israel wanted to be like the other nations. we must see in samson not just israel’s story but our own. 1 peter 2:9 beckons us, “but you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” i continue to remain in tearful awe at the grace of God. in hebrews 11:32, gideon, barak, samson, jephtha are named out of the judges. how much of an example of God’s grace that despite obvious failures they were instruments in delivering God’s people. God dealt graciously with people who fell far short of his ideals. in spite of personal failure, they stepped out in faith to do something against those who oppressed God’s people. God chooses to use failed and flawed people to accomplish his purposes. for his glory. there is still hope even after our eyes are gouged out but let us be a people set apart. assume nothing. live the life.



i’ve been on a hero thing for some time now pondering their nature and significance. sometimes we may look at ‘heroes’ in the bible and regard them as holy in a sorta holier than thou (with organ pipes blowing in the background) way that makes us blind to what scripture actually says about them. or perhaps we reduce biblical characters to simplistic good guys and bad guys categories. they are after all merely human like the rest of us who live and breathe in this fallen world. we can think that God may find no fault with them, that they always followed his will. it’s a level playing field…all have fallen short of the glory of God. i love how the bible doesn’t give us a picture perfect account of history and triumphant victory. it is full of messed up living that necessitates such a forbearing compassionate God. some simplified examples – abraham’s shadiness and an even shadier grandson who was the first slim shady, obviously david and even more sadly his son whose name meant loved by God, jonah the racist?, peter the rock? the point is clear, it is not that man is good but God is. he’s chosen to love his creation and use lowly individuals to accomplish his grand purposes. for their faith they are honored.
. . .
my epaphrodities ::.honor men like him…” [philippians 2.29] i have a deep love and appreciation for certain persons of faith, true heroes to me. they see closer than others. they are quick to sheath me in a way that others do not. their righteous words heal. fellow soldiers, messengers who risk their life to do this…you are my wingmen.
. . .
oh my…they killed superman…for real this time… gasp! i’m shocked at what they did to my hero
grrrrr. it’s blasphemous i tell ya…[shaking fist in air]
for those of you who can remember the original supes movies…have you ever noticed that it’s really a super Jesus story?
. . .
the legacy continues, william hung ::. uhhh…on sale soon at bestbuy, titled…inspiration, you can hear the pre-released tracks on the apple itms and purchase the full album there…included are three inspirational thoughts and a word of thanks from somebody’s hero…unbelievable

[american born chinese pastor]
seeks to be that third place for those who are american born chinese [abc] in ministry.
here we may explore issues unique to the chinese church and doing ministry in that context
expand the intersection of asian american culture and christian faith
or simply expose what goes on in the mind of this abcpastor

this may be a bit ambitious or even naiive but i do hope that through the posts we can bring together different faith communities, passions for the advancement of the Gospel and the equipping of the body of Christ.

if you are an abc pastor or have any suggestions or would like to contribute to make this space evolve, just comment.

Top Posts


Feed the Ego

Laurence Tom's Facebook profile

Add to Technorati Favorites