Thursday, September 17, 2009

Drops Like Stars - The Notes

Last night I had the opportunity to travel down to Toronto and catch Rob Bell on his Drops Like Stars tour. Here's a quick recap of some of the hilites.
  • The problem with "Out Of The Box" is that "The Box" is still our primary point of reference.
  • Suffering forces us to imagine a new future, because the one we were planning is gone.
  • If we aren't careful, our success and security and abundance can lead to a certain sort of boredom; a numbing predictability, a paralyzing indifference that comes from being too comfortable.
  • Sometimes there is a truth just below the surface that is, in fact, the real issue. And to get it out in the open, we have to suffer. Pain has a way of making us honest.
  • Great artists put into words what so many of us are thinking, feeling and wondering. They affirm that we aren't the only ones having this experience.
  • It doesn't matter if you are rich or poor, black or white, young or old - if you have the same disease as someone else, or if you both have a daughter with an eating disorder, or you were both recently fired... You have a bond that transcends whatever differences you have. That is what suffering does. It is the art of solidarity.
  • The first Christians insisted that when Jesus died on the cross, this wasn't another execution by the Roman Empire, This was God in flesh and blood. Bloody, thirsty, suffering, A God who was not somewhere else, distant, aloof, detached - but a God who was among us, feeling what we feel, aching how we ache, suffering like us. The cross was God's way of saying "I know how you feel."
  • Sculptors shape and form and rearrange, but at the most basic level they take away. And there is an extraordinary, beautiful art to knowing what to take away.
  • There is greatness within you. Courage. Desire. Integrity. Compassion. It's in there somewhere and sometimes we need to suffer to get at it.
  • It isn't just a failure, a mistake, a sin, a wrong. It's also an opportunity to grow, expand, evolve, and learn. It's the art of failure.

He went for almost 2 hours without any notes, holding the crowd's attention for the entire time. It was Rob's first time speaking in Toronto, hopefully not his last.


  1. All of your bullet notes are awesome! Each one is a discussion in itself. The last one - "the art of failure" - not sure if that is an excuse to sin so you can say "Hey I grew out of my failure." I think some people could take it that way. But to me it supports the theory that we become wiser from our mistakes. Hopefully.

    I haven't heard any messages this good in a while.


  2. great notes, AJ! much better than the few i took. thanx for the reminders of what was a great night.