Who is this Jamin guy anyway?
I am the husband of one and the father of nine. I was created to sing, to worship, to encourage, and to be steady. I am the Owner & Executive Director of Trinity Arts Center, a multi-disciplinary Arts Center in Eastern Tennessee, and the President of Trinity Arts Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization focused on funding arts education and performance. I've been involved with four music projects in my life -- Hot Pink Turtle, Spin Radio, Stand Like Stone, and of course, Jamin Rathbun.

In 2013, I added my Twitter feed to this site (below). To view the old content, just scroll down past the Twitter timeline. To keep in the loop on new posts, thoughts, and updates, just follow me on Twitter using the button below. Thanks!

Tweets by @jaminrathbun

box_bible bible

Matthew 3:4-6
John's clothes were made of camel's hair, and he had a leather belt around his waist. His food was locusts and wild honey. People went out to him from Jerusalem and all Judea and the whole region of the Jordan. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.

I'm reminded, after reading Matthew 3 this morning, about something that has very little to do with the passage. Regardless, I'm going to share what's on my mind. Hopefully it'll be something one of you needs to hear.

How would your church respond to a guy walking in the door wearing animal skins and smelling a bit like he'd been walking in the desert for a few months? How about if he had bits of locust and honey stuck in the edges of his beard?

One of my most frustrating church experiences was removing myself from a worship team because they issued a dress code that required: 1.) that male participants wear closed-toed shoes and 2.) that shirts (for men) be tucked into their pants. If I remember correctly, this dress code was applicable to any male church member who was involved in what they would consider to be a "visible" ministry (worship team, childrens ministry, ushers, etc). Anyway... There were a host of other things that led to my departure but my point isn't to bash my former church. I'm just trying to highlight a point, using a personal experience.

Sure -- you're going to have to set some boundries at times. Your church probably wouldn't let a guy in a loin cloth greet people at the front door. That same guy proably wouldn't be allowed to volunteer in your Pre-K program either. In each community, there are lots of reasonable standards that each local church should be able to set for themselves and I'd have a hard time telling them otherwise. It is absolutely true that the specifics of worship in Kenya, where a loin cloth may be completely acceptable, will be pretty dramatically different that in Toledo, where I'm sure loin cloths are not nearly as common.

In this case, the edict came down as a good way to establish a "high" standard that would give a good first impression to new visitors to the church. I even had lunch with one of the elders to discuss the issue. He believed that the inherent "goodness" in dressing up was as self-evident as "all men are created equal", that is of course, as long as those men are wearing slacks. = )

It had nothing to do with our lifestyle, nothing to do with our love... It was all about the clothes. That was what was going to draw them in. A bunch of sharp dressed men just exuding spiritual grandeur with our bright white, tucked in shirts and closed-toed shoes. Kind of like moths being attracted to a really bright light. I suppose it follows that the white shirt would need to adhere to an agreed upon standard of whiteness, in order to be fully effective. (?)

There are just so many problems with this idea that I'm not going to dignify it with a response. You can probably tell that the emotions wrapped up in this experience continue to linger a bit. Enough so that I relay the story with a little venom, even 4 years later. I trust that most of you will have better discernment and wisdom than to get wrapped up in this kind of thing.

Anyway... I'll close with what John said, just a few verses later.

Matthew 3:7-8,10
Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Produce fruit in keeping with repentance... The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.

By the way... What's the fruit you should be producing? Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23) Suspiciously absent are closed-toed shoes. = )

box_stuff stuff

Jesus loves you. Then again, He loves everybody. = )
LarkNews.com is a (satirical) Christian news site that is sure to make you laugh, especially if you're in ministry. There's also a good chance it'll offend about 80% of you at the same time so... Use at your own risk. = )

As a quick example, this months "articles" include:
  1. U.S. kids jealous of sponsored children. - Hanging on the fridge in the Dillinger home are photographs of three sponsored children from Honduras, while photos of the "real" Dillinger children are consigned to the guest bedroom.

  2. Presb. Church USA launches ambitious plan to lose only 5% of members. - The Minus 5 Campaign aims to lower the attrition rate in spite of the denomination's continued struggle with moral issues...

  3. Outsourced prayer lines confuse callers. - The manager of India Prayer Solutions, located in Mumbai, India, apologized for the incident and fired the employee who, he said, had not been properly trained.

  4. Loser develops ministry of listening. - "If everyone has wisdom, but nobody to share it with, what's the use?" he says. "I'm the guy you give it to."

  5. Calvin grads dominate 2006 pastors draft. - One highly watched rookie, David Humphreys of Luther Seminary, went lower than expected, due to what many consider unreasonable demands including an outsized automobile budget and eight weeks of "sabbatical" per year.

© 2006-2010 Jamin Rathbun & Superdink.com. All rights reserved.
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