12 Witnesses

Let these stones be a witness to what we have done here this day.

Merry Christmas

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Best Story of the Year

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No matter what your preference for church structure or missional engagement, you are going to love this story from Rick Reilly at ESPN The Magazine in his article, The Life of Reilly.  The tagline is:  There are some games where cheering for the other side feels better than winning.

The story is about a Christian High School that hosts a football game against a team of school aged convicts where the Faith coach asks the the supporters of his team to root for the kids who are down and out.  And they do.

They make signs for them to break through as they run down an alley of strangers who have made a spirit line for them.

When asked by one of his own players why they were doing this, the coach responds, “Imagine if you didn’t have a home life. Imagine if everybody had pretty much given up on you. Now imagine what it would mean for hundreds of people to suddenly believe in you.”

After the game, players from both sides met in the middle of the field to pray.  One of the Correctional School students, named Isaiah, asked to lead the prayer, and this is what he said, “Lord, I don’t know how this happened, so I don’t know how to say thank You, but I never would’ve known there was so many people in the world that cared about us.”

Now that’s what it’s all about.

HT: Brad Andrews

Evangelizing Atheists from Penn of Penn and Teller

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Missional Conversation

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It’s like a first date.

Though you are sorely tempted to talk and talk and talk, because you are excited and want to impress upon your friend certain things…

The most winning thing you can do is listen.

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PS – My wife, Bonnie, is having surgery to releive Carpal Tunnel Syndrome today.  I’ll be twittering it if you would like to follow/pray at twitter.com/artrogers.

David Fitch on Missional Orders as Church Planting

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Missional pastor/author/speaker/blogger David Fitch speaks to the difference between Church Planting in the Post Christendom era that America is now in and strikes the contrast against the way it was once done when the Kingdom of Christ was perceived to overlap the kingdom of men in a more substantial way than today – just a few short decades ago.

Interesting to note early on his commentary about the perception of America Culture by American Christians and how it varies from region to region.


Dave Fitch – the Cultivate Talk on Missional Orders from Bill Kinnon on Vimeo.

Upside Down Video for Christmas

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At first I was moderately intrigued by this video, but halfway through it, I was really taken in.  I hope you enjoy it.


Upside Down from Pace Hartfield on Vimeo.

Merry Christmas.

Why are Christians always pictured in a moment of ecstatic worship?

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Just curious, but why is it, especially among media writing negatively about Christians, but even among those writing more “neutral” stories, are pictures shown of a group at a point of ecstatic worship (speaking in tongues optional)?

For an example, check out this picture, entitled “evangelicals.jpg” used in an article slanted harshly against Christians in general and evangelicals in particular:

evangelicals

You can find the article here:

Evangelists: Cashing in on Hard Economic Times

Most of the Evangelicals I know NEVER look like this, and those that do, only for a couple of moments per week.  Do people think we really walk around like this all day long?

Missional Non-Conference with David Fitch

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David Fitch has announced a Missional Non-Conference (no fees, no one selling anything) in Ft. Wayne, Indiana January 3.

If you are interested in attending, he’d like for you to email.  You can get more information at David’s blog:

Missional Non-Conference.

Creating a Color through Black and White Picture

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christmas-parade-08-25I featured some pictures last week during Phriday Foto that had everything Black and White except the only important person in the picture, my daughter.  Turns out this is pretty easy and can be done with a free program, so I thought you might be interested in learning how to do it.

First, you need GimpGimp is a FREE graphics program like Photoshop, which is expensive.  Gimp is not quite Photoshop, but for free, it rocks.  Also, it works on either Mac or Windows.  I first learned about it from Frank Turk who has a Gimp University blog with loads of tutorials.

Simple directions are first, followed by detailed directions and screenshots.

Simple Directions

  1. Create a duplicate layer:  Layer->Duplicate Layer
  2. Desaturate the top layer:  Color->Desaturate (pop up window->desaturate)
  3. Erase the top layer where you want color to shine through:  Tool->Eraser
  4. Save As your picture in the format of your choice.

Detailed Directions

I’m going to post pictures of the progress as we go through.  Click on the pictures you see in the article for a full sized picture.

For this process, I picked a Christmas Parade picture in which a very colorful lady presented a profile, but she blended somewhat with the other spectators in the original picture.

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For well done graphic work, everything is done in layers, so get used to adding multiple layers to an image.  To create a duplicate layer, you need to select the layers menu and then duplicate layer from that menu.

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This is going to give you two layers in the layer menu toolbar.

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Next, you want to take all the color out of the top layer, which is called desaturatization.  The easiest way to do that is to drop down the color menu and choose “desaturate.”

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You’ll get a pop up with several options.  Just click the big desaturate button.

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This will give you a Black and White layer over the color layer.

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Then select the eraser tool from the tool tray, select the brush size you want and erase where you want the color to bleed through.  (The more precise way to do this is to create a mask that will create a selection around the place you want to erase, but this is the quick, easy and dirty way to do it.)

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When you are done, from the file menu, click “Save As” and save the image.  I created this by naming it “color through BW.jpg” and it automatically took me through the process of exporting it as a jpeg image.

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Phriday foto: 12-12-08

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If you enjoy these, then be sure to check out my other pictures at my Photoblog or at Flickr.

These are of my daughter marching in the Christmas Parade.  Can you guess which is mine?  Next week, I’ll show you how to do this with a free program like Photoshop (not free, very expensive) called Gimp.  Feel free to download and start playing, if ya want.  Available for Mac or Windows.

Click on a thumbnail to see a bigger picture.

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