Ken Medema on music,travel,life.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


I tried to get permission to reprint this article on my blog, but I haven't heard back. Many of you may have seen this welcome speech given by Dr. Karl Paulnack to the freshmen class of Boston Convervatory. If you have not, please take a moment to be inspired and reminded of our calling as musicians. I know, it moved me to tears and I hope it will do the same for my musician friends.

Click Here

Sunday, March 15, 2009


A reflection on the new podcast for March 15th

One of my dearest friends had told me that if there were a single text of mine that would qualify as Medema 1:1 it would be this one; "Finding leads to losing, Losing lets you find, Living leads to dying, and life leaves death being. Losing leads to finding, there's nothing more to say, no one will find life another way" .

I suppose there is no more potent word from Jesus than that one about losing and finding. You could live your whole life discovering the meanings and ramifications of that business. It relates to all the letting go that we continue to need to do all our lives; letting go of pride, misconceptions, lies we love, destructive cultural expectations, and the list could go one forever. It also relates to all that we might find in the process; rest, new purpose, some peace, forgiven relationships, new freedom in partnerships. All this was going through my mind as I created the new podcast "Losing and Finding" which goes on line today.

Quite clearly, I didn't talk about all this,I mostly just presented music around the theme. It is my hope that people who hear the podcast will do some of the thinking necessary around this theme. One doesn't even begin to scratch the top layer of the outside skin of the surface of this subject in a podcast, a book, a career in theology, or a life time. This is big stuff, the biggest. This is world changing stuff. Oh, that we could begin to makes friends with it.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


A reflection on an article in March Atlantic

In the March issue of Atlantic magazine, Richard Florida makes this ringing statement, "A crisis is a terrible thing to waste". In the article, he discusses the many ways in which this current financial and economic crisis is a part of the process of great change in the political and economic landscape of the country and, in fact, the world. There is too much to go into here, but, briefly, he talks about why some cities will thrive and some will not; why there will be less purchasing and more renting of space for both residential and business purposes; why areas with a great diversity of talent and lots of education will do better than those which are less diverse.

As I read the article, I couldn't help thinking about the Church in this country. I already see signs that we are and must be moving from dependence on massive buildings to the use of more mobile structures. I think perhaps it will be necessary for churches to deliberately employ a much broader library of gifts in leadership than we have so far done. I think perhaps the smaller more flexible church that can change directions and even change locations when necessary is going to be greatly advantaged in the years to come. I suspect we have put off the inevitability of this change for a while, but can't do it much longer. I have only really begun to think about this. I've heard people like Len Sweet talk about these things for quite some time now, but I have never felt the immediacy of it as I do now.

If you can get your hands on the March Atlantic, I think the Richard Florida article is worth reading. It speaks in language that ordinary folk, like me, can understand.