This Week’s Links

Internet1Each week on the blog I get to share some of what I have seen, read, and found interesting and thought provoking over the past week. To help make sense of all of these links, I have grouped them by the following categories: Church and Ministry Thought & Practice; Cross-Sector Collaboration; Leadership Thought & Practice; Millennials; Neighbor Love; Social Media & Blogging; Stewardship; Vocation; and Miscellaneous. I hope you enjoy these links!

Church and Ministry Thought & Practice

If you are preparing for worship or preaching a sermon this coming weekend I have some links that might be helpful for you. For those of you following the revised common lectionary and celebrating “Christ the King Sunday” this coming weekend, check out friend and professor Rev. Dr. Karoline Lewis‘ thoughts in “Kings of Relationship.” Also spend some time with Rev. Dr. David Lose’s reflections on “Christ the King B: Not of this World,” and Bishop Michael Rinehart’s links and thoughts on “Christ the King” as well.

For those of you following the Narrative Lectionary, check out Dr. Michael Chan’s “Commentary on Isaiah 5:1-7; 11:1-5.”

If you read one post on the church at large this week, read this piece by Will Willimon which importantly argues and reminds that “Churches Need to Take Care of Business.”

And, if you watch just one TED Talk this week, watch this one which my wife Allison (who is also a blogger and pastoral intern) shared with me from Chelsea Shields on, “How I’m working for change inside my church.”

Friend, blogger, and communications strategist Carrie Gubsch shared this exciting news about how the ELCA seminaries are exploring a “shared learning exchange.”

Pastor and blogger Clint Schnekloth did a good deal of writing over the past week about the church. Clint asked, “Can you imagine if we lumped all Christians into one sociological category ‘Not Buddhist’?” Clint also shared about a course opportunity for study next fall on, “Understanding and Engaging a Post-Christian World.”

For pastors and ministry leaders Clint Schnekloth shared and explained some digital ministry tips and ideas in his list of “7 Media Pro-tips that will Transform Your Ministry.”

Church and Social Media (#ChSocM) shared a transcript of their weekly chat which last week focused on “using social media to foster gratitude and Thanksgiving,” and was moderated by Paul Steinbrueck.

Kyle Matthew Oliver shared about “Digital Media for Ministry: Mapping the Landscape.”

Bishop Michael Rinehart shared pictures from the excitement and festivities of “Ashely Dellagiacoma’s Ordination.” Congratulations and blessings on your ministry Ashley!

Friend, pastor, and blogger Diane Roth shared about a recent experience of gathering with area pastors in “The Only One.”

Laura Crimaldi detailed about how local Lutherans and Catholics in the Boston area “vow unity ahead of Reformation anniversary.”

In response to the violence and tragedies last week in Baghdad, Beirut, and Paris, Sarah Pulliam Bailey shared the news that “Pope Francis condemns Paris terrorist attacks: ‘Using God’s name to justify this path is blasphemy.'” Also, at Liturgy Bits, Tim Graves shared “A Prayer After Paris.”

I don’t often link to The Wall Street Journal under church and ministry, but Melanie Grayce West shared about “How Churches Are Rethinking Sunday School.”

Friend and professor Rev. Dr. Terence Fretheim shared this look by Diana Butler Bass at how “Oprah’s new ‘Belief’ series shows how dramatically the nature of faith is shifting.”

For those of you preparing for Advent, Christina Embree offers some ideas for a “Practical Advent: Celebration in the Everyday.”

Friend, blogger, and seminarian Jessica Young shared some thoughts on “Church in the Round.” Within her reflection Jessica observes, “To see church as it should be seen in the world, partnerships must be made and encouraged as we reimagine earth as if God is in charge of everything.” What do you think? I think Jessica is definitely on to something.

Blogger and pastor Jan Edmiston shares thoughts on innovation and faith communities writing, “Let’s Innovate Before We Have To.”

LEAD shared about “The top five ways leaders say they are growing” in ministry and congregations.

Cross-Sector Collaboration

In sad and disappointing news my alma mater Pacific Lutheran University has released plans to sell their long-owned public radio station, KPLU. I am hoping that PLU comes to its senses and reverses course, as do most of these listeners who recently shared their reactions.

NWB shared some helpful insights for nonprofit organizations, teams, and leadership in sharing about “10 agreements for a happy and well-functioning team.”

Ruth McCambridge shares about how a “Study Suggests Nonprofit Sector Workforce Just Plain Better than Most.”

Social leadership theorist Julian Stodd shared about “Laying the Foundations for Change,” and some other change insights in thinking about “Lighthouses.” Julian also asked, “Are You Adapted?

Leadership Thought & Practice

Dan Rockwell shared a number of leadership reflections and posts over the past week. These included: thoughts on “How to Eliminate Stupid Rules“; a list of “The 10 Strategies of Obnoxious Leaders“; and some reflections about “Secrets that Elevate the Journey to Adventure.”

surveySeth Godin shared a quick insight about “Surveys and focus groups.”

Katy Tynan shared thoughts about “How to Manage Talent in a Flexible Workplace.”

Tanveer Naseer shared a guest post by Ken Goldstein explaining, “Why Leaders Need to Stop Using Performance Reviews.”

Bob Tiede shared a guest post by Dan Forbes highlighting and unpacking “12 Strategic Questions to Prepare You for 2016,” and plan to use these questions as you prepare and strategize as you plan your start for 2016.

Speaking of Dan Forbes, he shared a guest post by Louis Hayes Jr., on “Adaptive Thinking.”

Bill George explained about “The True Qualities of Authentic Leaders.”

Justin Irving reflected about, “Leading Organizations Fit for People.”

Steve Keating wrote that, “People Don’t Follow Positions.”

Anne Loehr takes up the fact that “Minorities are still largely underrepresented in the United States workforce.” In response to this, Anne writes and encourages to “Use ‘The Interruption Strategy’ to Tackle the Diversity Gap.”

Damian Corbet argues that “The C-Suite Must Embrace Social.”

Ted Bauer shared about, “One Simple Way to Make New Hires more Effective.”

John Bell highlighted “5 Ways Leaders Promote Innovation.” These ways include:  leaders unsettle the organization; they’re hardheaded about strategy; they make innovation a priority; they take note of what’s already going on; and they appreciate that not many ideas work the first time.

Megan Dougherty pondered and shared some thoughts about life, leadership, and creativity at Thin Difference, writing, “I Think, Therefore I Am- Creative. Or Am I?

Also over at Thin Difference, Eric Torrence wrote that “Knowledge Isn’t Always Power.”


Jon Mertz at Thin Difference reflected about “Generational Empathy: Setting an Example.”

Meghan M. Biro wrote, shared, and asked, “The Future of Work is Here- Are Your Managers Prepared?

Anne Loehr shared and unpacked, “Seven Frequently Asked Questions from those who manage Generation X and Generation Y.”

Jessica Stillman noted “7 Ways Millennial Managers Will Change Work.” The themes that Jessica noted about Millennials are: they’ll kill work-life balance; insist on flexibility; lean on metrics; support employee growth; (finally) kill the performance review; everyone will know what everyone else makes; and the line between contractor and employee will blur.

Julia shared a profile about Millennial thinker and expert Chelsea Krost, writing that “This Woman is the Zuckerberg of Millennial Experts.”

Neighbor Love

Friend and professor Rev. Dr. Dwight Zscheile shared about, “Praying in an Age of Fragmented Attention.”

A.J. Swoboda shared a great and timely post over at “Christ and Cascadia” with thoughts about Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and REI, sharing, “Good (Black) Friday: Reflections on REI and Christian Discipleship.”

"one again" by Vonda Drees
“one again” by Vonda Drees

Friend, blogger, and artist Vonda Drees shared a number of beautiful posts over the past week. These included: “two small copper coins“; “a ribbon at a time“; “one again“; “contemplation poured out“; “Amsterdam canal“; “a secret place“; and “noticing.”

Lutheran World Relief shared exciting news that it received $350,000 from the Starbucks Foundation.

Friend, pastor, and blogger Frank Johnson shared a few different reflections over the past week. Frank wrote about “Keeping Christ in Christmas,” and about “The Punctuation of Life.” Frank also shared his sermon based on Hosea 11:1-9 entitled, “God of wrath, God of grace.”

Friend, pastor, and blogger Aaron Fuller also shared his sermon based on Hosea 11:1-9 on “Hosea & God’s Pathos.”

I shared some thoughts given recent events and their neighbor love implications and questions yesterday on this blog, writing about, “Cups, Refugees, and Neighbor Love in Action.”

In thinking more about Refugees, my sister Tamara Siburg shared a couple important links. First, she shared that “Paris Attackers Weren’t Refugees according to top EU Official,” as detailed by Dylan Hock. Tamara also shared these “3 things President Obama said about refugees that we all need to hear.”

Regarding refugees, Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service shared this important response.

Friend, blogger, and seminarian Kristen Lee shared some thoughts “On Caring.”

John Pavlovitz wrote that, “If You’re Gonna Condemn Terrorism- Please Condemn All of It.”

Friend and professor Dr. Mary Hess shared, “Grieving with Paris…” and “Loving in spite of the pain.

Pastor and blogger Clint Schnekloth took up the question, “As a Christian, what should I think about Islam and Terrorism?” Clint also reflected about, “RedCups, Mizzou, and Veterans Day.”

Friend, pastoral associate, and blogger Stefanie Fauth-Lemke shared some food for thought in this “Love Feast Devotion,” as well as “A prayer for peace.”

Nurya Love Parish reflected about vocation, the neighbor, ministry, and the church in writing, “My Galilee: What I Haven’t Been Telling You.”

Friend and professor Rev. Dr. Karoline Lewis shared some reflections on Mark 13:1-8 in “Storied Stones.”

Tom Ehrich wrote that “Starbucks did my-way Christians a favor.” What do you think?

Friend and National Lutheran Choir member Sarah Bane shared her recent devotion, “What does it taste like?

In news from Minnesota, last week charges were finally dropped against organizers of a Black Lives Matter protest at the Mall of America last year. Unfortunately, there was more bad news as an unarmed black man was shot by police in Minneapolis. This has rightfully led to protests. Keep the communities in prayer, and work for justice and reconciliation.

Friend, pastor, and blogger Stephanie Vos took up the question, “Why didn’t Jesus talk about sex?

Social Media & Blogging

Friend, blogger, and communications director and strategist Carrie Gubsch shared this helpful look at “Common Social Media Etiquette for Businesses” from Olsy Sorokina.

Joyce Grace shared some tips and ideas for “How to Make your Website more click-worthy with goals, words, and common sense.”

Friend and blogger J.W. Wartick shared his version of the links with his “Really Recommended Posts.”


The COMPASS blog is sharing reflections about Thanksgiving and especially the reasoning for why we give thanks this month. As part of this series, I reflected about “Why Do I Give Thanks?” See what I highlighted, and the stewardship and faith reasoning for my gratitude, this day and everyday. Now it’s your turn, why do you give thanks?

Speaking of giving thanks, Seth Godin shares about “A Thanksgiving Reader.”

Friend, professor, and stewardship director Adam Copeland shared about the insights and results from his stewardship class “Debating Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University.”


Friend and blogger Julia Nelson shared a guest post from Lacey Bauer as part of her regular vocational insights and reflections in “Tuesday Tea Time.” Julia also returned to her blog this week today with her own new edition of “Tuesday Tea Time.” Welcome back Julia, and thanks again for letting me help you out while you were away exploring.

Friend, pastoral associate, and blogger Stefanie Fauth-Lemke shared some life and vocational reflections about “Clerical Dress..


Seattle Times sports columnist Larry Stone wrote about “Why Ken Griffey Jr. of the Seattle Mariners deserves to be baseball’s first unanimous Hall of Famer.” As a baseball today largely because of the excitement of the Seattle Mariners, Griffey, and the magical run they shared in 1995, I can’t agree more.

Speaking of the Mariners, friend and blogger Tim Chalberg shared news about the team’s recent acquisition of Joaquin Benoit.


That concludes this edition of the links. I hope you have enjoyed them. As always, if you have particular questions or topics for me to think about on the blog, please share them. Also, if there are things you would like to see included in the links, please let me know that too. Until next time, thank you for reading and being part of the conversation. Blessings on your week! -TS

Image Credits: The Links; “survey“; and “one again.”

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