This Week’s Links

Internet1Each week on Tuesdays I share some of what I have seen, read, and found 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; Stewardship; and Vocation. I hope that you enjoy these links!

Church and Ministry Thought & Practice

If you are writing a sermon or preparing for worship this coming weekend I have a number of links for you. For those following the narrative lectionary, check out this “Commentary on Acts 18:1-4,” from O. Wesley Allen Jr. Also, spend some time with friends and professors Rev. Dr.’s Rolf Jacobson, Craig Koester, and Kathryn Schifferdecker on the Narrative Podcast discussing the “Church at Corinth.”

For those following the revised common lectionary, Bishop Michael Rinehart shared some thoughts on “Easter 5C.” Also, be sure and listen to this “Fifth Sunday of Easter” Sermon Brainwave with friends and professors Rev. Dr.’s Rolf Jacobson, Karoline Lewis, and Matt Skinner. Thinking about this weekend’s readings, Karoline also wrote and reflected that, “Resurrection is Love.”

Over on her blog, friend and professor Rev. Dr. Karoline Lewis also wrote and shared that “Resurrection is Protection” and “Resurrection is Abundance.”

My wife Allison continued her look and study on church administration writing, “Governance, Volunteers, and Boards, Oh My!” She also dug into finances, budgets, and stewardship in writing that, “I’m Dreaming of a Church Budget: Not Like the Ones I Used to Know.”

Allison also shared this piece from Karl Vaters pondering the question, “Is ‘Sit Back, Relax and Enjoy the the Service’ Killing the Church?

I’m excited to share news that the Grunewald Guild has announced the appointment of its new directors, Jim and Vonda Drees. If you follow the links regularly, you know that Vonda and I are good friends and I love sharing her artwork each week with you. Congratulations to both Jim and Vonda on this wonderful news!

Pastor and blogger Clint Schnekloth wrote and shared that, “The ELCA is not a person: Eight theses.”

Friend, pastor, and blogger Aaron Fuller shared vocational and ministry reflections and perspectives in writing, “Bi-Vocational Pastor: Your Fundamental Belief in People.”

Friend, professor, and mentor Dr. Terri Elton wrote about church, ministry, and vocation in “Reset in New Jersey.” She also shared this hour long video on “Practice Discipleship: Wondering Through Service Learning.”

Terri also shared news about the opportunity to have a “Christian Book Fair for your church” by Augsburg Fortress and as shared by Beth Lewis.

My friends at LEAD wrote and shared hopes for leaders to “Take Your Life Back.”

Derek Wiley wrote about “Young pastors at work in The Dalles,” including friend, blogger, and pastor Tyler Beane.

Church and Social Media (#ChSocM) shared a transcript of their weekly chat from last week which focused on the question, “How do you keep the momentum of Easter going online?” The chat was moderated by Kwame Pitts.

Friend and stewardship director Adam Copeland blogged about the implications of time and participation in reflecting about “1,000 Fewer Hours.”

Cross-Sector Collaboration

Friend and communications strategist Carrie Gubsch shared this post by Linda Timmons pondering, “What Does it Mean to be a Faith-Based Organization?

James Doubek reports about the importance of taking notes by hand, rather than via computer first. I have personally found this to be true. How about you? Thanks to friend and professor Dr. Lynn Hunnicutt for first sharing this article with me.

Julian Stodd shared some “Words about Learning: Transition.”

Leadership Thought & Practice

Brian Dodd shared, “4 Ways Leaders Get Smarter, 4 Ways Leaders Get More Resilient and Much, Much, More.”

Dan Rockwell shared a number of great perspectives, including “7 Ways to Inspire Enlightenment with Curiosity,” and a post with both leadership and accompaniment implications, “The 10 Powers of ‘With.'”

I had the privilege of interviewing a great local leader earlier this spring in Ridgefield, Washington, Police Chief Carrie Greene. It was announced yesterday that she will be retiring in May. Thank you for your service and good and faithful leadership.

Justin Irving wrote about “Transformational Leadership and Organizational Transformation.”

Friend and mentor Dr. Terri Elton shared some great leadership perspectives and reflections in writing, “Refine.”

Steve Keating wrote about authentic leadership and its attributes in sharing about, “How to Pick a Presidential Candidate,” as well as the seemingly opposite of authentic leadership, “Controlling Leadership.”

Vin Scully
Vin Scully

Anytime that I can put icon and legendary voice and baseball announcer Vin Scully in The Links is a great day. Ken Fang shares this video and story of how Vin recently shared a story about leadership, life, and resiliency while broadcasting a Giants-Dodgers baseball game. Vin’s moral is this, “You’ve got to some how survive. You’ve got to some how battle back,” in sharing a story about a baseball player, a snake, and a jack rabbit. I know you are intrigued so definitely check this out, watch, and listen.

Heidi Oran at Thin Difference shared some “Practical Tips to Improve Self-Awareness.”

Also over at Thin Difference, Jon Mertz shared about “How to Trigger Innovative Leadership.” Jon offered these three ideas for how to be an innovative leader: require team members to participate in a community project; show confidence in the future state, not the current state; and start a design thinking conversation or lead a design thinking training class.

Jon also write a poetic leadership post entitled, “Didn’t Think It Would Happen This Fast.”


Jeremy Steele shared a look at the “Top 10 church faux pas that turn off millennials.”

Neighbor Love

Friend and blogger Tyler Scott shared about life, vocation, meaning, and connection in writing about, “When qualifications distract from what’s really important.”

Friend, pastor, and blogger Diane Roth wrote about “The Geography of Grace.”

I shared my sermon from this past weekend on Psalm 23 and John 10 on, “Sheep, the Good Shepherd, and Promises.”

Friend, pastor, and Ph.D. student Mandy Brobst-Renaud wrote relatedly about, “Wanderers of the Fold, Doubters of the Flock, Sinners of his Redeeming.”

"Soul Joy" by Vonda Drees.
“Soul Joy” by Vonda Drees.

Friend, blogger, and artist Vonda Drees shared a number of beautiful posts over the past week. These posts included first of all some news from Vonda about her new transition and calling to the Grunewald Guild in “a glorious and wild transition.” Other beautiful posts included: “the Risen Presence“; “great-fullness“; “clay touched by God“; “seek and find“; “soul joy“; and “kindness and sorrow.”

My wife Allison shared this hard but captivating look from Darren Boyle at “How ‘riverside living’ has a different meaning in America’s homeless capital.”

Friend, pastor, and blogger Frank Johnson shared his sermon from this past weekend based on Acts 17:1-9, “The Intersection of Ourselves and Our World.”

Friend, pastor, and blogger Aaron Fuller also shared his sermon from this past weekend based on Acts 17:1-9 and wrote, “Don’t play the victim.”

Friend Cheryl Davis shared this look by Jeff Sharlet at “Donald Trump, American Preacher.”


Margaret Marcuson writes that, “Your church has more assets than you think (hint: it’s not just about the money…).”

In observance of Earth Day later this week the COMPASS blog is sharing environmental stewardship related thoughts, reflections, and posts. As part of this series last week it shared a two-part look at the idea that “We Are What We Eat,” with an overview and then a more personal reflection from Dori Zerbe Cornelsen.

Friend and stewardship director Adam Copeland shared this perspective from “Yvette Flunder on Preaching Stewardship.”

Michelle Schroeder-Gardner shared some “Great Financial Lessons My Dad Taught Me- Money Doesn’t Have to Make Your Life Miserable.”

On this blog I shared about some “Money Questions from Middle Schoolers,” and the fun I am having teaching confirmation students about money, faith, finances and stewardship.

Catherine at Young Adult Money shared about “5 Common Budgeting Mistakes (and what to do instead).”


Friend and blogger Julia Nelson shared her weekly dose of vocation and life reflections in her “Tuesday Tea Time.”

Pacific Lutheran University president, Dr. Thomas Krise, shared some “Q&A about salary increases, funding new initiatives, and budget accountability.”

Friend and blogger Tyler Scott wrote about the importance of rest in, “Don’t let society fool you – we all need rest.”


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. Thank you for reading and being a part of the conversation! Blessings on your week. -TS

Image Credits:  The Links; Vin Scully; and “soul joy.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s