Interesting new read by a friend of mine: “We Need a Completely Different Kind of Education”

differenteducation-300x300So I helped edit a book for a young gentleman who has some bold and innovative thoughts on education as it pertains to Kingdom living. His name is Jan Simson, son of Wolfgang and Mercy Simson.  Jan is a young German entrepreneur who has skipped out on college, has travelled the world, and is starting a business.  He has embraced his responsibility to not be a cog in the wheel of marketplace and institution and to instead be a producer who creates instead of consumes.  He refuses to live a dull and uninteresting life, like too many young people are being told they must do.

If you’re looking for some fresh thoughts from a young man who understands that following Jesus must extend to his decision on whether or not to go to college (an uncritically-examined given in most of the circles I’ve walked in), Jan’s book is worth a read.  He takes many of the principles from Wolfgang’s Starfish Manifesto, contextualizes them to young people, and extends them into the realm of college, career, and creativity.

Many of you know that I’m not really into merely knowing more stuff through christian books.  Information dissemination through books is not powerful for life change, and most books only skim the surface. This one is of a completely different variety.  Jan’s book is an anti-book of sorts.  I’m all for something that challenges young people to not just think differently but make life-altering choices that will set them on completely different trajectories. And he is practicing what he is preaching.  So when he asked me to write the forward for his book, I gladly said yes — even though I’ve never written a book forward before in my life!

Check it out if you get a chance. Here is his Facebook post that announces the release of his book: Friends, my long awaited book, “We Need a Completely Different Kind of Education,” is now finally available on I also created a Facebook page for the company, Simson Media, and we’re on Twitter as well: Also, if you’d like a signed copy, send me a message. THANKS!




Fascinating article on the power and mobility of decentralized networks

This was on NPR just today. I loved reading about how an app is being used by grassroots foot-to-ground movements to circumvent the loss of cell and Internet communication. Chinese gvmt still has much to learn about the principles of starfish vs spider entities. This book (The Starfish and the Spider) by Ori Brafman has […]

The Gospel According to Jesus, spoken byTroy Polamalu

The above video has caught the world by storm this week. In it, All-Pro running back, Ray Rice, of the Baltimore Ravens knocks out his then fiancee with a left hook and drags her crumpled body out of the elevator. This would be the perfect time for all of us to throw stones at him: […]

Bl@ck Jesus: How a weed-smoking and N-word using Homeboy got me thinking


So we are in the third week of Adult Swim’s new controversial show, Black Jesus. In the realm of satire, anything in that general vein promises some level of entertainment. So being an educator who is always seeking juicy writing topics from the news, I jumped on the opportunity to have students reflect […]

How do we get better at loving people? The Good Samaritan Parable, taking responsibility, and becoming our brothers’ keeper

It’s not a question we ask often — certainly not often enough given the priority Jesus puts to the verb “love” in His Good Samaritan teaching of Luke 10:25-37. That parable still remains a heckofa grenade that Jesus throws into our christian bunker. It was in response to the question about what it looks like […]

Great verse and reminder

Wrote this a week ago.


I just read a great reminder of a reality that is so easy to forget. It’s in John 5 after Jesus heals the lame man by the pool.

John 5:16-17 in the NLT: So the Jewish leaders began harassing Jesus for breaking the Sabbath rules. But Jesus replied, “My […]


This is the word that I use to best summarize what this move to Arizona is all about and what the “Basecamp” community is all about: CONVERGENCE. Convergence is for those of us who are tired of living compartmentalized lives of “God, family, and work.” We recognize that spiritual life, social life, work life, recreational […]

Is Information the Path to Transformation? (a.k.a.,”Books are for dabblers; guides are for adventurers.”)

The title question of this post is a bit tongue in cheek since the average thinking person would say no: information is NOT the path to transformation. Despite what people say, I don’t believe protest to this title is really how the average person actually lives her/his life. Have a problem with child-raising or kids […]

Missionary aroma — it can be smelled a mile away and implications for how we make disciples differently in our community

Today at work, I had an interesting conversation with a N@tive-@merican fellow. We met to discuss how our work programs could better collaborate to better serve the educational needs of low income native-am housing residents in his housing project (For discretion purposes, I’m keeping it vague).

Anyhow, he was guarded at first but began to […]

The flaws of a programmatic and churched life from a Mission and Discipleship point of view

What is the opposite of organic and natural? In the realm of food, man-made, processed, artificially-created, and mass-produced. Think twinkie or sugar cereal. In the world of nutrition, the move has been towards greater health and well-being by opting for whole and natural foods. The closer it is to the way nature produces it, the […]