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Heart & Soul

Is it possible to turn this bucket of water upside down without spilling any?" our science teacher asked.

We junior highers thought we knew the answer. Nope. Not without a lid.

But when the teacher grabbed the pail by the handle and swung it like a windmill, we saw the bucket upside down at the height of its orbit, and not a drop spilled out. Students, meet centrifugal force.

Last summer I co-taught a D.Min. class of pastors from China, Korea, Australia, the Philippines, and the United States, each student from a different denomination. Yet every one had experienced conflict over worship styles. Some had seen their churches split. Students, meet another kind of centrifugal force.

In this case, the force causes things to fly apart, not stay in the bucket.

Today's consumer culture threatens
to pull our churches apart.

It's not just worship styles that fragment churches. That's but one evidence of a larger centrifugal force—today's consumer culture, with its incessant choices—that ...

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