Hopping through the Blogosphere

Ok, so today I have spent a lazy morning/afternoon catching up on blogs from some of my favorite bloggers. Because the rhythms of my life have changed a lot since the end of July I haven’t spent as much time reading people’s blogs and I realized today that I have missed out on a lot of great thoughts and ideas. It was fun to rediscover some blogs and to see what God is stirring in people. So, here’s a little round up of some of my favorite blogs from this week:

I was very moved by this Broken Blessing posted on Jonny Baker’s site. I have always been inspired by Jonny and his community’s creativity in engaging with God and with each other and I was especially touched by this blessing which was improvised during a gathering they had where they gave each person a broken piece of ceramic and then had them put it on a table making a table top out of all their broken pieces. They then served communion from the broken table. I just loved this imagery and loved the idea of giving tangible expression to inner truth like that.

I love anything that speaks about community and ways in which community is formed and things that contribute to authentic community, so it’s no surprise that the post “How Do We Form Community?” on Christine Sine’s blog caught my attention. Just last night Bryan and I were talking with some friends at dinner about interdependent in community and what community can look like. I don’t know exactly how community is/should be formed in this unique urban cross-cultural setting we live in, but I think that Christine points to a good starting point that works in any setting – cooking and sharing a meal together.

I recently read “On being a Neighborhood Church” on Jesus Manifesto where Mark Van Steenwyk explains their rather “narrow” ministry focus. They have chosen to focus their ministry on just one neighborhood in Minneapolis and I found his explanation for why to be really interesting. The thought of living in close physical proximity with the people of my spiritual community has always been appealing to me. The other day I was talking with a friend after yoga and she made the remark “it’s too bad that we don’t all live closer to each other” and I realized that it really is too bad. Engaging in true authentic day-to-day interdependent community becomes a lot harder when your community members are spread all over the city, even when that city is a city like Prague, which is fairly small and manageable with great public transportation.

I also discovered today that Amber at Homeschool Diva is “Calling All Artists”. She wants to start an Etsy store with a collection of creative work from different artists and then donating the proceeds to Lemonade International. So, if you like creating things and are interested in an opportunity to collaborate with other artists in creating for social good, check out her site and drop her a note.

Here are two companies that I found today that I thought were interesting. The first is an accessory and jewelry seller, called Sweet Notions. They clean up and repair old donated accessories to resell and then they donate the profits to charitable and socially responsible, sustainable enterprises. The second is an eclectic enterprise call The School of Life which I found INCREDABLY interesting. They describe their shop by saying it is “a place where you can try out a variety of cultural solutions to everyday ailments.” They “sell books, artworks, courses, holidays and therapeutic services.” They even offer something they call Bibliotherapy – where they will meet with you and recommend/”prescribe” books that they feell will be perfect for you. They also offer organized group meals with strangers, because they believe that “knowing how to have entertaining and meaningful conversations is a skill worth practicing.” During these dinners they provide a “specially-designed conversation menu, an easy to use guide that helps you get the most from talking to a stranger.” I found their site and the concept very entertaining and interesting.

 Well, that’s it for now. Enjoy blog hopping! J

Rejoicing in the journey - Bethany Stedman