Tuesday, October 22, 2013

for any of my pipe smoking friends

less than 9 hours to go and still the high bid is only 229 which is ridiculous come take a look rare eltang capped rhodesian
rev

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Read about my adventures at pipe camp

Just got back from Nashville, you can read about it here http://revspipes.com

rev

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Fund Raising, (why don't you just pay for it yourself?)

When I was posting my indiegogo fundraiser send the rev to pipe school to a forum I frequent someone asked, "why don't you just save up and pay for it yourself? why do you expect others to pay for your school, just because you are a good guy?"  Well I think that is a good and fair question.  Here are some answers:

1. I believe the world is a better place when we help each other.  I don't just believe it in an intellectual assent way, but I live it daily.  My family has lived this ethic for our entire lives.  We have helped others in many ways, so accepting help, and even asking for help is part of belonging to this kind of a world.

2.  We live in a society that is all about debt.  I borrow to go to school, I borrow to buy a car, a house, or even clothes.  Well I think if we all work together, we can stop all the borrowing.  And in so doing we can also stop a lot of the exorbitant interest and banking bullshit.  In addition, if we give through relational networks, we can also see what is valuable, or even see what is unworthy in our plans.

3. I believe individualism is wrong.  I believe it is not how we were meant to live.  I believe we are meant to live in community, to support one another, and help see dreams and gifts.  If we are to live in a world that rejects the popular narrative, we need to learn to live communally. 

4. On a personal level, we live very simply, we give a lot of our income to our community.  We also live in a way that takes time that could be used for income, and use it for work in our community.  My wife doesn't work so she can be free to volunteer full time at a local outreach.  This means outside of taking a loan, we have very little income to "save"

So this is an explanation for why I asked for help.  I would love any reactions, or thoughts about this.  In addition, would appreciate it if you gave my campaign a look.

thanks

rev

Saturday, May 04, 2013

A theology of food

It seems as though Jesus is always eating.  Moving from one meal to a next.  These are not just casual references to things that happened, but very important lessons in discipleship.  We often forget the scriptures were not biogrophy, but discipleship implements.  So the question is... how do these passages teach us to look at food, and how is it part of our discipleship?

I just want to ask the question, not give the answer, hope some people will reply.

rev

ps, if you get a chance please stop by my indiegogo campaign send the rev to school

Monday, April 29, 2013

SEND THE REV TO PIPE SCHOOL

SEND REV TO PIPE SCHOOL!!! I am going to Nashville to study with Grant Batson with your help

As some of you know my wife and I live simply, and spend much of our time and money on our community.  We are involved with local charities and have done some of our own work with homeless folk in our park.  But that means I need a bit of help to do my "schooling"  Grant Batson, an incredible pipe maker from Nashville, who's work really resonates with me on a creative level has agreed to take me on as a student for a few days, in which I will learn how to make pipes more perfectly, more efficiently and more creatively.  I am very excited to take advantage of this one on one instruction, and you can help.  Please follow the link and help as you are able.

john

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

started a new blog about pipes and pipe making

Please check it out, follow me, blah blah blah

I am now trying to get a new business started making custom pipes.   This blog will be a small part of that, but I hope you enjoy some of the crazy pipes that I will be putting up.  Today I posted some pictures of Christian Wolfsteiner's work, and man do I love it

revspipes

rev

Friday, November 30, 2012

My interview on Christian Anarchy with Whiskey Preacher

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/whiskeypreacher/2012/11/the-christian-anarchy-edition/

rev

Thursday, July 05, 2012

What is best in life

Genghis Khan
The greatest pleasure is to vanquish your enemies and chase them before you, to rob them of their wealth and see those dear to them bathed in tears, to ride their horses and clasp to your bosom their wives and daughters.

This man conquered much of the world of his time.  His dna is scattered very wide.  But I think, of course that this statement is not only wrong, it is horrible and inhuman.

I am asking myself this question, What is best in Life? and I find that what is truly best in life is actually pretty simple.  The love of friends and family, security and met needs.  The best in life includes the ability to practice creativity, to do good work, to practice real rest, and to feel needed.

What is disturbing to me is that much of the world does not have this.  That much of the world actually has all it needs to have this, but creates desires and problems that keep it from experiencing this in order to sell things.  That we manufacture insecurity, needs, and problems to keep us from good work, and creativity and proper rest. And in living in this way we continue a cycle, and a structure that insures the unhappiness of billions of people.

I pray that we may learn to live differently, and to truly enjoy life, while providing for others liberation from a system, that prevents them from living differently and enjoying this precious gift.

rev

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The problems with the church (an arrogant series of cynical genius) the upside down kingdom

The church as we have been taught is an organization.  It is modeled after all of the organizations that we see in the world.  Whether we are talking about the CEO on top of the international corporation, or the boards that run similar ones.  Whether you are talking about Governments that run based on democratic rule, or despotic dictators, our church has been modeled after these worldly organizations.

This is not as it should be.  The church of God should not be a pyramid of power, with Jesus at the top and the great "leadership" just under him.  What we have there is the mimicry of a system of oppression.  Oh sure, as long as the "leaders" are benevolent, this might work ok.  In fact, it might even be more expedient, and less chaotic that the alternatives.  But it is not God's revealed way.

Now as this is a blog, not a treatise on the issues of leadership and structure, we will be approaching this subject with a bit of simplicity.  I have found that of all my "weird" ideas, this one seems to get the most resistance.  I believe this is because the structure of our entire life is based around the idea of top down, oppressive leadership and ministry.  We are so stuck into this system that anything else seems incredibly subversive and wrong.  That our deep involvement with the culture and structures of our day not only hold our imaginations hostage, but they seductively inspire our treatment of the scriptures.  We do not see the truth, even though God lays it out before us so powerfully.

In order to grasp what I am talking about there must be a breaking of supernatural power upon our minds.  We must be able to see how the powers that be use our marriage to these structures of hierarchy to not only keep us bound up, but to keep us supporting those structures that are outside of the church.  We become upholders of evil, as we practice systems and structures that are in themselves the tools for the oppression of the entire world.

Like I said, I am going to keep it simple, I could go through the entirety of scriptures, and tear our systems to shreds, but I will instead just share two scriptures here, and if you need more, we can speak of that in the comments.

The first scripture I would share with you comes from the 1 book of Samuel chapter 8  7 The Lord told him, "Listen to everything the people are saying to you. You are not the one they have turned their backs on. I am the one they do not want as their king. 8 They are doing just as they have always done. They have deserted me and served other gods. They have done that from the time I brought them up out of Egypt until this very day. Now they are deserting you too.

The Lord goes on to explain how a king will tax them, take their sons and daughters into service and slavery, rule over them with an iron fist and make his own house great.  Yet the people wanted a king so they could be like other nations.  Now please hear this, to God this was rejection of Him.  The rest of the scriptures speak of the horrible atrocities that accompany kingship, even a "good" king like David winds up in the midst of civil war, murdering a man and taking his wife, and practically destroying the nation all the while building up a huge monument to himself.  The fact that God loved David, does not take away from the fact that God did not desire a king, in fact it shows that even with a man as good hearted as David, power corrupts.

The next scripture is repeated in the gospels, but lets look at Mark 10
James and John Ask a Favor of Jesus
 35 James and John came to Jesus. They were the sons of Zebedee. "Teacher," they said, "we would like to ask a favor of you."  36 "What do you want me to do for you?" he asked.
 37 They replied, "Let one of us sit at your right hand in your glorious kingdom. Let the other one sit at your left hand."
 38 "You don't know what you're asking for," Jesus said. "Can you drink the cup of suffering I drink? Or can you go through the baptism of suffering I must go through?"
 39 "We can," they answered.
   Jesus said to them, "You will drink the cup I drink. And you will go through the baptism I go through. 40 But it is not for me to say who will sit at my right or left hand. These places belong to those they are prepared for."
 41 The other ten disciples heard about it. They became angry at James and John.
 42 Jesus called them together. He said, "You know about those who are rulers of the nations. They hold power over their people. Their high officials order them around. 43 Don't be like that. Instead, anyone who wants to be important among you must be your servant. 44 And anyone who wants to be first must be the slave of everyone. 45 Even the Son of Man did not come to be served. Instead, he came to serve others. He came to give his life as the price for setting many people free."

The disciples John and James want to be at the top of the pyramid.  The other disciples get mad, probably because they didn't think of it sooner.  They understand the way leadership and power work in the world, and they would like to be at the top end of the pyramid.  But Jesus explains that in his kingdom, things are not as they are in the world.  The leaders are those that give up everything and serve others, not those that have authority.  We in the church are called to a different understanding of structure and leadership.  We are not to be a hierarchy, but a place that truly practices "the first shall be last and the last first"

Another problem with the church is our refusal to abandon the ways of empire in our structure.  To elevate people, usually professionals into places of authority.  For the incredible majority of people to give away their own power, their own responsibility to someone else.  And what is very disturbing to me in this culture of consumerism, people pay others to live out their discipleship. One of the problems with the church is we have a structure that allows a dereliction of discipleship by the majority, and an acceptance of power and authority that is unbiblical by the leadership.

How this is remedied is by the first relinquishing their thrones and serving the last.  By smaller groups, allowing, in fact requiring, that all share their gifts, their talents, their thoughts and practices.  That once again all of the church becomes the reflection of God, and the dazzling presence of Jesus is found not at a service where the hierarchy is in full effect, but in the everyday life, where every single joint supplies.

rev
 

Monday, June 18, 2012