This Week’s Links

Internet1It’s Tuesday.  That means its time for this weeks links. Unlike last week, they aren’t so extensive. That is to be expected though when the United States observed the Thanksgiving holiday for much of the second half of last week and weekend.  That said, there has still been a great deal of good and thought provoking things shared in the past week that I now entrust to you.  This week’s categories are:  Church and Ministry Thought and Practice; Leadership Though and Practice; Neighbor Love; Stewardship; Worship; and Miscellaneous.  Enjoy!

Church and Ministry Thought and Practice

Carey Nieuwhof wrote this post in September, about reasons churches don’t break the 200 attendance mark.  I recently found it. It’s not earth shattering by any means, and synthesizes much of the Congregational Mission and Leadership sort of material I read while at Luther Seminary. But there is something about this post which has been on my mind lately, and I can’t quite pin it down yet. What are your thoughts?

My wife Allison wrote this provocative piece which she pondered reasons she has been given by others not to go to church.  What do you think of her reflections? As she asks, “Why do you go to church? Why do you not go to church? What makes you curious about going (or not going) to church?”

Leadership Thought and Practice

Enuma Okoro offers interesting and I think helpful thoughts on Michelle Obama, and her leadership and activism.

Mark Miller asked, in light of Thanksgiving, are you a thankful leader?  Well, are you?

Angela Ahrendts wrote about how a successful transition can be and is a great legacy.  I found this to be very affirming as I find myself in the midst of much transition currently. I really love her conclusion.  She writes, “If a seamless transition is my greatest legacy, then the greatest gift I can receive in return is to see the true measure of the company’s success by how many lives are touched and transformed by the power of our performance.” Fantastic!

David Garvin wrote for the December issue of HBR about “How Google Sold its Engineers on Management.” Its a fascinating read!

I recently gave a sermon which touched on the idea of uncertainty.  Somewhat related, Dan Rockwell wrote about how its important to have hope and be able to overcome hopelessness in the face of uncertainty, especially as leaders. He asks, “What makes hope possible?” And “how can leaders give hope?”

Terri Klass asks “how do leaders go from gliding to transformation?” What do you think?

Here are “3 Traits all successful thought leaders share.”

Neighbor Love

Friend of this blogger and blog, Hannah, offers important reflection on access to contraception and affordable care in light of the love of our neighbor, and an idea that “Jesus wouldn’t exploit people to turn a profit, or restrict people from healing.”

I have written before about the idea of accompaniment. Rachel Swenson recently wrote her take “On Accompaniment and why it’s important.” Give it a read, you will be glad you did!

Whenever I can include Rev. Dr. Martin Marty, its a good week of the links. Today, Marty offered some reflection on the “Pope on Unequal Wealth.”  This is all important reflection for thinking deeply about what it means to love our neighbor in the world, even with all of the world’s inequalities and economic disparities.

Advent Wreath (labeled for commercial reuse with modification in a image search for "Advent")
Advent Wreath
(labeled for commercial reuse with modification in a image search for “Advent”)


Skip Prichard shared “5 ways to Cultivate an Attitude of Gratitude.” His five are:  1) Write it Down; 2) Talk about it; 3) Meditate; 4) Express it; and 5) Seek it. What do you think?

Friend of this blogger and blog, Grace Duddy shares some gift ideas that give back in honor of today being “Giving Tuesday.”


Given recent conversation on this blog and others about the relationship of Advent and Christmas music, see this post about “Christmas music, Advent words” by Katherine Willis Pershey.


Addie Zierman shares “35 Ideas for Cultivating Spiritual Mindfulness at Christmas.” This is a great resource. What do you think? What ideas would you add?


That wraps up the  links for this week.  For those of you who observe Advent, Happy Advent!  I hope you all had a blessed Thanksgiving last week as well, and that you have a wonderful week!  Blessings- TS

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