Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Lost enough

Our church community have a range of things going on at the moment - and one the things I've been thinking for us are the words of a Rich Mullins song:
"If I believe you're leading me,
then I believe you've led me here
Where I'm lost enough to let myself be led"

I pray that we would let ourselves be lost enough to let ourselves be led.

Whirlwind tour of Victoria!

Today I head off to Apollo Bay to visit the SUFM (Scripture Union Family Mission) down there. Should be fun and a chance to encourage them and get to know some of the team ... as well as hopefully have some good chats with some people. It's hard to know what to say and how to be as a visitor at all ... but even more so when some people view you as the "boss from SU" ... it's a wierd feeling being that big scary person - when I don't see myself as that at all. But really I just want to encourage them in the Kingdom work they are doing.
Over the next couple of weeks I get to visit 12 different missions around Victoria.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Moving into the Neighbourhood

A really simple but profound truth has been hitting me really hard this Christmas: Jesus moved into our neighbourhood.
It's not that he was forced to do that: "you've got no option". No, he chose to move into our neighbourhood.
It's not that he came in some removed way: "well I"ll be there but I'm not going to get really involved in their lives". No, he threw himself right into everyday life ... even in the midst of people who were br0ken and far from perfect.
It spins me out that Jesus chose to do that ... and is such a strong invitation to live in the same way myself.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Birth pangs or labour?

Well the week before Christmas. How on earth did it get to that?

It's been a long year - in some ways one of the hardest of my life, certainly there is no doubt one of the most fruitful in terms of personal growth ... and for that reason I would say one of the best years of my life.

There are many things in my life which are in waiting stages, labour stages or have arrived ... the birth narrative not only is being remembered in my environs and life - but in many ways in my various communities it is a lived story.

There are many ways in my own life where the dawn really has come - it really is a new day and things really have been birthed in me. That is very very real. However, there are others ways in which I am waiting to know and understand how things will turn out or come about, or even waiting for myself to make some decisions. In those things I guess I mostly feel like it's the kind of active waiting of middle of a pregnancy - or maybe getting to the time when someone stops work and where people are thinking crazily about prams and all those kinds of things.
(and when they are scatty like blonde haired friends of mine - oops I'm in trouble now ... just as well she doesn't live anywhere near me ...)

In my key communities life, we are in a very troubled time. It really is the hard work of labour. This has taken much of my thoughts, emotional energy and time over the last week or so ... and will probably take more room over coming weeks on this blog.

And my job - overseeing missions for SU ... mission teams so are in the birth stages ... it's so almost time, but not quite ... are we ready? Oh no, we haven't done that ... What do we do about that?
17 beach missions happening around Victoria this summer - most exciting but now in those last minute preparation stages ... most definately late stage pregnancy!

Over the coming weeks my plan is to write about some thoughts about Solace, thoughts about mission (related but not specifically about the 12 missions I'm visiting over the coming weeks) and also some thoughts around Christmas and the new year. Phew! stay tuned!!!
who knows you might even get a guest blog or two!!!

Friday, December 10, 2004

Waiting ...

Been doing quite a bit more thinking about waiting - we really don't talk about this theme as much as would be helpful. In church tradition there are so many periods where it rates highly - lent, pentecost and advent to mention a few (a fair chunk of the year really!).
I'm thinking about waiting for a number of reasons.
Firstly, it is advent after all!
Secondly, I'm speaking about waiting and some of my journeys of waiting this Sunday at our Sunday gathering at Solace.
Thirdly, I'm working with many mission teams who are "waiting" to go on mission.

As I think about all of those reasons for thinking about waiting ... two themes are very key for me this morning:
Waiting is active - not passive.
We wait in community.

And talking of waiting - hopefully you who read my blog won't be waiting as long for entries - I'm going to try and get back into a blogging rhythm - sorry I've been a bit scatty.

Sunday, November 28, 2004

More waiting

Earlier in the year there was a grid blog (where various people blog about the same thing) around the idea of waiting. I blogged avery few days for some time on some thoughts around waiting.

At the other end of the year, in a very different place we are in a different part of the church calandar - then was lent, now it's advent. Both have waiting as a theme.
I've been thinking around wiating this last week for a number of reasons, especially that I'm leading a couple of our Sunday gathering times over the next few weeks and going to lead one on waiting. Some people have also been blogging about it and some mailing lists I'm on ahve had the theme a bit!

Lots of thoughts around it but it has taken me back to earlier in the year and probably the person (that I know of) who enjoyed my waiting series of blogs the most, the person who emailed me if I missed a few days and asked me where the next post was, because he found himself "waiting" (we enjoyed the irony of that!) for my post, in eager expectation. That person was Paul, whose death I blogged about a few months ago.
So as I enter a time of thinking about waiting, it is in a place of being very conscious that as I ponder it, blog about it, live it, Paul is no longer part of that journey ... at least not in the way he was. His journey of waiting in this life is over. The thing he longed for and waited for the most is his! However, as I "wait", as I ponder the theme of waiting this advent it is with the very real presence of the loss of Paul in my life ... in our blogging life especially.

More waiting

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Is this a book review site?

It's beginning to feel like it!

I've been reading heaps in the last few months - and having a great time. Over the last week, I've read a book called Open Minds (published in the US under the titled Creative Company) by Andy Law. It's all about the Advertising Company that completely changed the way that they worked. It was one of those books that really caught into my passion for life and work ... It's a good read and challenges lots of our automatic assumptions about what work is and how we do it and approach it.

Friday, October 15, 2004

A New Kind of Christian

Last week I finished reading an excellent book by Brian McLaren called "A New Kind of Christian". It's a most excellent book.
If you are someone who either loves Jesus or is interested in who he is and what relating to him might be about but are over some ways the church has told you that needs to be lived out I reckon that you might like to journey with this book.

Others who read this blog might be interested in reading it to get a real feel for where some others are coming from - but can I ask that you read it graciously?

I'm reading the sequel at the moment which is even better "The Story we find ourselves in" - all about the big picture story of life, the universe, the Bible - so exciting and gets me so passionate about life.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Quiet, I know

It's been very quiet on this blog - sorry about that. Life has been going exceptionally fast (and very slow at the same time) in this part of the world. Been working lots, applying for jobs, studying, and a decent amount of partying too!
One of my most exciting things of the last few weeks is going 4 generations back in one of my families - so on that part of my family I am 8 generations back ... and know that we came into Australia (into SA) on a boat in 1840.
Will write more soon.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Another quote

Reading another brilliant book: Resilience by Anne Deveson.

A quote that resonates with alot of what I've been thinking about over the last 6 months or so (it's conversation between two people):

"It's only when people change their thinking that action follows."
"Sometimes you need to act before you change the way you think."
"You need both approaches," he said calmly, "As I've grown older, I've recognised that the way I live is far more critical than the actions I take. Fundamental change in thinking isn't triggered intellectually. It's far more emotional than that." (p71)

I guess this resonates becauses I'm becoming more and more convinced that neither actions nor thinking, as important as they both are, really cut it for deep change - that it really is about much more core issues of who we are and how we live. Actions and thinking are part of that, but no where near the whole story - I agree with "it's far more emotional than that". Although I'm not sure if "emotional" is the word quite, although definately part of it, maybe what I would say at the moment is "it's far less tangible than that".

Saturday, September 04, 2004

Living in a process world

Yesterday I finished reading "Leadership and the New Science" by Margaret Wheatley. Excellent book.

I loved these sentances and thought that many of you would too:
"the greatest challenge for me lies not in adopting any one new method, but in learning generally to live in a process world. It's a completely different way to be. Life demands that I participate with things as they unfold, to expect to be surprised, to honor the mystery of it, and to see what emerges. These were difficult lessons to learn. I was well-trained to create things - plans, events, measures, programs. I invested more than half my life in trying to make the world conform to what I thought was best for it. It's not easy to give up the role of master creator and move into the dance of life.
But what is the alternative, for me or you? Our dance partner insists that we put into ourselves in motion, that we learn to live with instability, chaos, change, and surprise. We can continue to stand immobilized on the shoreline, trying to protect ourselves from life's insistent gales, or we can begin moving. We can mourn the erosion of our plans, or we can set out to discover something new." (p153-154)

Friday, September 03, 2004

Doing or Thinking

A statement and idea I've heard a fair bit is "act your way into a new of thinking". The idea is that the way to change how people think is to get them to act differently and then they will think differently. There is much that I agree with in that - so often churches especially just major on what people think and expect it to change the way people live when so often it stops as heard knowledge rather than real knowledge which is lived and thought.

BUT I'm conscious of how different people process and people like me who need a framework to act in. That is, I need to "understand" the system/how it works, then I can know how to act and the action has a framework for it - ofcourse the action then reinforces the thinking and then the thinking reinfoces the action then ... (I won't go on!)

I think that they are absolutely inter-related and I guess I have been around lots of people who major on the "acting changing thinking" in recent times. What are your thoughts

Monday, August 30, 2004

The food is crap!

The other week we had an interesting situation with the group of us who hang out regularly in our area. There is a key place where we hang and where we are very much regulars, where we are aiming to build relationships as well as have a "local" and the other week we were faced with a dilemma.
Often the food has been pretty average (with some exceptions like the time we had the best steak any of us have ever had!). On this particular occasion the food was appalling for all but one of our table. One persons risotto wasn't cooked properly, several of us ordered fish that was just plain awful. What do you do? What would you do?

What did we do? We discussed, we were fed up, we wondered what to do. A few people went and talked to the waitress, and we also talked to the owner who we know a bit - there was a new chef starting in a few days time and while I haven't eaten there since, the food looks great. We were polite but honest and used the opportunity to keep building relationships - and we chose to take the offered refund.
I thought that it was an interesting dilemma

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Love/Hate list of Emerging Church

Jason Clark (UK) lists things that he loves and hates about the Emerging Church - loads in there that I agree with. What are your thoughts?

Saturday, August 14, 2004

Birthday Cards

Just going through my birthday cards and noticed a fasinating trend. The only birthday cards with "Happy Birthday" on the outside were from my parents and my aunt - all the rest were plain on the outside - even if specific birthday cards in the message on the inside. Not sure what that says - just was an interesting division.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

A Hymn for every Occasion

Yesterday in class we looked at the hymns of Charles Wesley (I am doing a class on the History of Evangelical Christianity this semester). It was a fasinating series of lectures - John Wesley, then George Whitfield and then the hymns of Charles Wesley. But this last hour particularly struck me.

He wrote hymns for every kind of occasion - for when you thought you might be getting small pox, for when you had it, and for when you were recovering from it, for those in child birth ... and the one that seemed strangely appropriate yesterday which was one of the ones that the person giving the lecture (a person doing her PhD in Charles Wesleys hymns) gave us to look at was a hymn to sing on viewing a corpse. The words, I thought, were quite appropriate for such an occasion and it was interesting to think about how they had some way of expressing those thoughts in words that were given to them - especially at a time when words are quite hard to find but there is (in my experience)a longing to express something of what you are experiencing.
Interesting ... no I am not going to become a mad hymn singer out of this (certainly none of you who have sung around me would consider that an option anyway! ... or those of you who know what I think about the way singing can isolated people who are unfamiliar with church norms) ... but it is interesting all the same

Friday, August 06, 2004

How do you remember someone?

Apologies for how long it's been since my last post. It's been such a mixed few weeks. A close friend of mine died last Tuesday (27th July). Words really don't cut it at such times but I'll say a few.

My memories of Paul are wide and varied: they start with buying cigarettes for us before I had my first cigarette, they continue to things like ABBA music, to many holidays together - especially trips around wineries ... Rutherglen will not be the same without him, to living in the same house as him and lots of memories around that, to planning his proposing to his wife and being involved in the activating of that plan, to watching 6 hours of Brady Bunch straight ... and I need to mention The Simpsons, Mad about You and South Park, to lots of msn conversations, to walking through and talking about lots of the crap times in our lives together. Those are just a few of the scattered memories I have of the 13 years I've known Paul.

The last week has been full of lots of grief - and lots of joy. Grief about Paul's sudden and tragic death, grief for us and grief for my very close friend Julie, who is his wife. The agony of his death for many of us is very hard to put words to.
The joy of knowing the end of pain for him, the knowledge of him being with God for eternity - the absolute certainty that we have in his relationship with God and the way that has been proclaimed in this last week has been amazing and a source of joy. Someone has commented that the last conversation he had with them was about how much he longed for people close to him to know God and I'm really conscious that his faith has been proclaimed really strongly in his death - that has been a joy to be around and to be part of. It's also been the place that myself, and many others, have found hope, strength and refuge.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Following Jesus in Everyday Contexts

If you were part of a group looking at what it means to be a follower of Jesus in the contexts that you find yourself everyday - what would you want to look at?
(if you are going to be part of this group - feel more than free to answer the question too!)
Maybe an even better question - what would not want to look at? And why?

Birthday Rolls On

Yes - the birthday continues! Last night I went to some friends' place for dinner and those present decided that it was necessary to go for coffee and cake at a local cafe after dinner in honour of my birthday. Once more, very pleasant and lovely.

Monday, July 19, 2004

Two books on Leadership

As well as partying I've beenr eading two books: Leadership and the New Science by Margaret Wheatley and Surfing the Edge of Chaos by Pacale, Millemann & Gioja. If you're into that kind of stuff - I strongly recommend them. Once I've finished them I will write more about them.

Too much partying

The last few days have been quite pleasant really. Thursday was my birthday. A special thanks to all those who helped celebrate that in your various ways - emails, phone calls, presents, organising of cakes, lunches with me, partying with me etc etc.

On Thursday, I went to Sth Yarra with 2 friends for lunch. We spent hours talking, sitting & eating - a most pleasant way to spend an afternoon, especially having the sun streaming in and sitting directly under the heater (Melbourne is COLD at the moment!). That night went out with my parents to Nth Fitzroy Star.

Friday night went out with a very good friend for dinner to our fav. local Spud place for dinner. They have just done it up and we just had to go and have dinner there (I was by then in the mood for a low key dinner!) - and we discovered they have added two new spuds to their menu. Need to try those - Dahl Makhani and Chicken Korma.
Then I had a party - a drop in and have a drink and celebrate at the bar/cafe place that is several of our second home - Wesley Anne. It's a place where several of us are very much "regulars" and it was lovely to selebrate there. People came and went, many stayed for hours and a good time was had by all. A couple of people made cakes (thanks guys!) and I had happy birthday sung to me ... and the guy who runs Wesley Anne gave me a free shot!

On Saturday arvo. I went to the Art Gallery and had lunch with two other good friends. Their is an Impressionists exhibition on in Melbourne at the moment and I love Impressionist art. A relaxing lunch and fun afternoon.

Later I had dinner with someone to talk about some things and then we went off to a friends house warming party.

Yesterday, went to our Sunday gathering and had an ace time ... then went to friends for lunch (with others) stayed for several hours, came home and had other in and out here during the evening.

A very full but very good week or so.

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Our warped Proverb

In our communities Sunday gathering last week, someone directed our attention to Proverbs 3:5-8 and we spent some time reflecting on some of the concepts in it. Having reflected a bit on it, couldn't help re-writing it according to the opposite - pretty close to how many of us often live, I reckon!

Trust in yourself and others with all your being,
and lean fully on your and their insight,
In all your ways acknowldge yourself and them,
And your paths will be very crooked.
Be very wise in your own eyes;
ignore the Lord, and embrace evil
It will be draining for your flesh,
and exhausting for your body.

Do look up the original - it's a much better way to live!

Saturday, June 26, 2004

Food, glorious food

The last three evenings have been somewhat special - all in quite different ways but all hinge around good food and company.

Thursday evening went out with two friends to a pub called the North Fitzroy Star. It was a beautiful environment and a very special evening - but the food was especially magnificant. All three of us had a salmon main that was literally divine. Then to follow it was had a chocolate dip with what we are sure was homemade marshmellow, strawberries, honeycomb - and for those that I was with, bread (I keep telling them that chocolate sauce does not go with bread - but they disbelieve me!) Unfortunately, we weren't there early enough to get a table near one of the several fireplaces but it was one of the most pleasant evenings I've had in a long time.
That was followed by lunch with the class of the intensive that I have been part of at college all week - at a Lebanese restaraunt near college - yummy!
Friday evening was a lovely night at my dads. Another very special time with dad. Again yummy food - haven't had corn on the cob for a long time, but especially a wide ranging convo that lasted until the early hours of the morning.
And tonight - a hilarious night with some friends over. On surface there is nothing particular to rave about - it was a simple night cooking, eating and cleaning. But - that was with much laughter, conversation and fun. It was a simple night of community that was very much infused with an enjoyment of life. We made Pad Thai once again (yes now very much got the hang of it) and made some biscuits for morning tea for the Sunday gathering of our community tomorrow. I reckon they are the most laughed over, most analogy drawn out of biscuits in the history of the world! Much fun and refreshment was had all around.

Monday, June 21, 2004

Yoga and various other things

Had a great dinner with a group of people tonight - open house type night at some friends of mines house. Yummy food, great convos and lovely time of prayer to top it off. Thanks guys!

All of us Christians with somewhat different backgrounds (including several of us having a mixture of things in our own background) and got onto the whole yoga, alternative medicine, astrology kind of conversation. So what do you think about these things? And particularly why do you think what you think?
(There are people of what I imagine are all sorts of different views on this topic who read this blog ... so do be honest and real but also be gracious in your tone! I'm sure you will be but just a reminder!)

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Moltmann agrees

I had a friend over for dinner last night (cooked Pad Thai for the first time - another friend of mines fav recipes and just had to try it for myself) ...
anyway - over dinner we got talking about the quote I put on here the other day from Bride Stripped Bare: "The opposite of love isn't hate it's indifference". My friend commented that Moltmann (a theologian) says that the opposite of love is apathy - similar notion.

Sunday, June 13, 2004

God Nourishes Me!

I've had an amazing day of really knowing peace and stillness. Lots of most excellent stuff has happened as well as one quite average thing (ie.crap thing), but in it all I've been so aware of a stillness that is so special.

This morning I was at the Sunday gathering of my community, which was a very special time of knowing God's presence for us as a community, but it was a very special time for me personally too. There were some specifics about that but mostly it's just a stillness - that I have thought about in terms of the kind of stillness that is meant in "be still and know that I am God" - it's a stillness that has no angst in it.
Can't really put it into words but wanted to share what I could all the same.
Been almost in tears all day of delight in God and God's delight in me.

Saturday, June 12, 2004

The Bible Nourishes Me!

If you know me well - you will know just how much I get nourished by the Bible and get excited by it. That's true at all sorts of levels - but the biggest thing for is that often it just "spins me out" and nourishes me at a level much deeper than I could ever put words to. In a whole range of ways the words and story I find are life-giving words and a life-giving story. It nourishes and sustains me - not in a simple way - some of you will have been around with me struggling with what I find in the Bible, maybe last week, maybe 10 or 15 years ago! (I still remember some ripper arguments from when I was 16 - must confess that sometimes it was in an honest attempt to understand what I read there, sometimes from a need to have an argument ... mmm ... has that changed! Actually I think I am much less likely to argue for the sake of arguing - thank God!)
But it is very true that I find much life in the Bible.

So at the moment what am I reading?
At a Bible reading group I'm part of that meets twice a month we've been reading thru Jeremiah. Poor guy - had it hard.
Also in the middle of reading thru the gospel of John with some people - the Jesus of John is very differently portayed than the Jesus of the other gospels - it's been striking me how he's on about people understanding what "real and eternal life" is.
And personally, I've been trying to read thru the Sermon on the Mount - but I haven't got passed the Beatitudes. Been reading them in different versions and reflecting on them for a few weeks now. So here's that passage from The Message (this is what he taught his climbing companions, "those who were appreticed to him, the committed"):
"You're blessed when you're at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule.
You're blessed when you feel you've lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you.
You're blessed when you are content with just who you are - no more, no less. That's the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can't be bought.
You're blessed when you've worked up a good appetite for God. He's food and drink in the best meal you'll ever eat.
You're blessed when you care. At the moment of being 'care-full', you find yourselves cared for.
You're blessed when you get your inside world - your mind and heart - put right. Then you can see God in the outside world.
You're blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That's when you discover who you really are, and your place in God's family.
You're blessed when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you deeper into God's kingdom.

Words about what true life is about

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Tooth out!

Not much blogging happening early this week - been a bit out of it and sorry for myself really! Had a tooth that's been bugging me for 6 months or so out on Monday - under sedation and I'm still on knock you out type pain killers. It's good to have it out and will be nice when my body settles down from it's shock too.

So I'll be back when I have more of a brain - mmm ... leaving myself wide open for comments there!

Saturday, June 05, 2004

The opposite of love

Have just finished reading "The Bride Stripped Bare" - interesting book, be quite interested to know what others have thought of it if you've read it.

But there was a quote that led me tothinking about stuff way different to the context of the quote:
"The opposite of love in not hate it is indifference"

I thought about that in terms of relationships but also in terms of our relationship with God. How true is it that the opposite of loving God isn't hating him - then we are engaged with him, but rather being indifferent to him.

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Ethics Finished

I've just finished semester at college. It's been a semester of learning lots - and other stuff that I've known or thought about for ages starting to gell and be clarified. I've done an essay on a Biblical Framework for Homosexuality and one on a Philosophical Framework for Christian Responses to Poverty. They have both challenged me heaps.

Tow key thoughts that I am still pondering are:

- what does living in the "now and not yet" mean for what we expect of Christians? How do we hold to truth in a fallen, non-ideal world? What does acceptance and grace look like without offering cheap grace? How do we hold firm to how God calls us to live and call each other to that but be realistic about us being in a fallen world in need of God's grace and transformation? I guess really - how do create cultures and spaces where truly transforming grace is the dominant culture?

- lots of theologians talk about a concept of "preferential option for the poor". I've been thinking about this for years now and am coming to the point where I think that while standing with everyone, loving everyone and caring for everyone - God does have a preferential option for the poor. I think that I see that in all sorts of ways in the biblical narrative, not least in Jesus. So I'm thinking lots about what this means for me. If I really believe this what needs to change in my life? I know that this is a life-changing kind of question, I suspect that's why it's been so long in coming

Monday, May 31, 2004

The end of waiting!

I've found it hard to know what to write in this post!

Many of you will know that over the years I have struggled with things "arriving" - often I'm scared that things will disappoint me, be different to what I expect etc etc but the invitation to me is to embrace the moment and to fully live whatever this moment brings - whether that be joy, sadness or whatever.

I doubt the disciples and the others in Jerusalem were disappointed on the day of Pentecost. Blown away - most definately. Shocked, probably. Scared, maybe. I'm sure that at times in my life this day would have been one that I would have shrunk back from - I wouldn't have known how to deal with it.

So how are we responding to what God is doing and bringing into our lives? Are we embracing it or are we shrinking away from it?

Along with that I wanted to ask the questions that Lynne Taylor (http://www.emergentkiwi.org.nz/lynne/ - using that browser where I don't know how to use links again - sorry!) asked on her blog - that Steve, her husband asked at their gathering yesterday.

Could this be the Spirit of life?
Where is the Spirit of Jesus?

My encouragement to myself and you is to ask those questions as we live our life this week. Be interesting to see what we experience and where we God at work that we might not have seen before - and how we get to join him in what we see him doing! Let me know how it goes for you :)

Saturday, May 29, 2004

Tired of Waiting

Interesting - I was thinking that this would be my next post but then didn't manage to get to posting for a few days ...
How much would those waiting in Jerusalem have got tired of waiting? How much do we get tired of waiting for God to do what he's doing in us and in our midst?

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Waiting in darkness

I read a prayer today by Janet Morley entitled "Waiting in Darkness" that I thought fits quite nicely into the theme of these fews days. I pray that today you would know God in places of darkness and light and that wherever you find yourself these words might have meaning.

For the darkness of waiting,
of not knowing what is to come,
of staying ready and quiet and attentive,
we praise you, O God.

For the darkness and the light are both alike to you.

For the darkness of staying silent,
for the terror of having nothing to say,
and for the greater terror of
needing to say nothing,
we praise you, O God.

For the darkness and the light are both alike to you.

For the darkness of loving
in which it is safe to surrender,
to let go of our self-protection,
and to stop holding back our desire,
we praise you, O God.

For the darkness and the light are both alike to you.

For the darkness of choosing
when you give us the moment
to speak, and act, and change,
and we cannot know what we have
set in motion,
but we still have to take the risk,
we praise you, O God.

For the darkness and the light are both alike to you.

For the darkness of hoping
in a world which longs for you,
for the wrestling and the labouring
of all creation,
for the wholeness and justice
and freedom,
we praise you, O God.

For the darkness and the light are both alike to you

Ethics books

For those of you interested in Ethics books (there was some interest a week or two ago). Another one I would recommend is: "Beyond Bumper Sticker Ethics" by Wilkins. It's a paperback and probably easier reading than any of the others I suggested. Also it's looking at different philosophical positions and looking at the strengths and weaknesses of them from a Christian perspective.

I'm busy doing an essay on a philosophical framework for responses to poverty.

Monday, May 24, 2004

Waiting for What?

How often are we waiting for something and we don't really know what it is that we are waiting for? Even if we know what it is in a sense - because we haven't experienced it there's a sense in which we don't know what we are actually about to experience. I've been thinking about how this must have been true for those waiting in Jerusalem. How much did understand of what they were waiting for? How much was their anticipation? How much was their complacency? What did they do with the unsure feelings of what it actually was that Jesus had said to wait for?

What is true for us in the ways in which we are waiting? Are we waiting in anticipation? With complacency? Unsure of what it is that God has got for us?

Sunday, May 23, 2004

Waiting with Others

Not only are you waiting, but you're waiting with others. Certainly, this must have made it easier and harder. I mean it would have been great to be able to talk about the last three years and everything that had happened and to be in this expereince with others. But I'm thinking at the moment of the other side of the coin.
Now I know that it was only 9 days BUT we all know that 9 days can be a very long time sometimes - especially when everyone is feeling unsure and unsettled and not really sure what's going on. In that context, what would the waiting game that they were in be like?
How do we today wait together for God to reveal what he is doing

Saturday, May 22, 2004

Waiting, waiting, waiting

It's been a busy time for the disciples until the more recent events of Jesus' death, resurrection and ascension. Their encounter with Jesus and these events have turned their worlds on their heads. And now before Jesus ascends he says to them "Wait in Jerusalem until your receive power from on high". I wonder what they feel and think ... some thoughts I've been wondering about "Why do we need to wait? There's so much to do.", "Why can't he just give us that power now?", or maybe "phew we get some space to process all that's been going on and happening". Which of those do you relate to the most?

For me, I think they are all true - being and not doing can be a hard thing for me, although something that God's teaching me more and more about, so I would probably have been restless to do things rather than wait. I was really aware too as wrote those questions just how much it comes down to letting Jesus be in control and trusting his timing and purposes.

How is God calling you to wait at the moment? How are you responding

Friday, May 21, 2004

Pentecost novena

I've never heard of a novena before - thanks Maggi (http://maggidawn.blogspot.com/ - I'm using the browser I don't know how to do links on again!) for introducing me to the concept.

She and a few others are going to blog through these next 9 days between the times when people who follow a church calendar remember the ascension and pentecost.

This time really is about waiting and this time for me is also about waiting - I'm very conscious of that.

So I think it's a pretty relevant theme for me at the moment ...

So let me ask you a question: what have you assumed about the time when the disciples were in the upper room ... about the time when Jesus said "wait until I give you power from on high"? Why do you think that Jesus said to wait? What do you think it was like for the disciples?
mmm ... think I am in for an interesting and fun 9 days - stay tuned!

But today let me leave you with a prayer that was in a service I went to recently and that has been very real for me:

"Let us pray to the Lord, that we may be open to go where God sends us:
Christ, whose insistent call
disturbs our settled lives:
give us discernment to hear your word,
grace to accomplish our tasks,
and courage to follow empty-handed
wherever you may lead,
so that the voice of your gospel
may reach to the ends of the earth.


Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Just an update

Yes it's been a while! It's essay time of semester - so have had my head in books. I have been teased much recently about my love of writing essays. I do enjoy the study process even though I rarely give it the space in my life that it deserves. I'm doing ethics this semester and been loving it - although I'm struggling at the moment coming up with a philosophical ethical framework to then talk about poverty in the light of.
In doing my last essay (a Biblical Ethical Framework with homosexuality as a case example), I have been thinking alot about what it means to live in the space in history known as the "now but not yet". For those not familiar with that phrase, that's since Jesus came and the kingdom of God came into the world in a new way - but before the kingdom comes in a more complete way. So I've been thinking about all the tensions in that - and thinking about many ways in which that outworks itself and what it means to be people living as followers of Jesus in that time.
Kind of connected to that I've been thinking about Jesus' response to the Woman Caught in Adultery (John 8) and his response to the Pharisees who brought her before him - but I'll write more about that soon. But if you want to wet your appetite, you might want to have a read of it and think about how Jesus responds in this story.
One of the many other things that's been happening is that I finished my job (at an Anglican Church in Moonee Ponds) on Sunday. I've worked there for over 2 years and it's with mixed feelings that I am leaving. A nice farewell and some things over the last few days that really affirmed that I was God's person in that place for the time I was there and that what I felt I should do in that community I had done (although with lots of learning and things you'd do differently etc etc.) What more could you want!
And then went out with a couple of friends from there to celebrate - alovely afternoon drinking a couple of bottles of wine, eating good food and sitting in some good funky places in Melbourne city.

Well there's a bit of an update on my life. Will write more soon.

Thursday, May 06, 2004


It's been interesting coming into Autumn this year and reading on some peoples blogs and speaking and emailing with people who are on the other side of the world and going into Spring. Has me thinking about all sorts of things: the different seasons of life, how we walk with eahc other in those different seasons, the order of the universe, the specialness of each season.

It also reminded me of a poem that is one of my fav's which I thought I would share (thanks to Sonja for initiating me to Studdert Kennedy and to an ace guy called Don who bought me the book once he realised I was into him!):


Once glistering green,
With dewy sheen,
And summer glory round them cast:
Now black and bare,
The trees stand there,
And mourn their beauty that is past.

Look, leaf by leaf,
Each leaf a grief,
The hand of Autumn strips them bare.
No sound or cry,
As they fall and die,
Because they know that Life is there.

So stiff and strong,
The winter long,
All uncomplaining stand the trees.
God make my life,
Through all its strife,
As true to Spring as one of these.

So would I stand,
Serene and grand,
While age strips off the joys of youth;
Because I know
That, as they go,
My soul draws nearer to the Truth.

He is the Truth,
In very sooth,
The Word made flesh, who dwelt with men,
And the whole world shall ring
With the song of Spring
When thy soul turns to its Lord again.

When God's soft breath,
That men call death,
Falls gently on thy closing eyes,
Thy youth, that goes
Like the red June rose,
Shall burst to bloom in Paradise.

Saturday, May 01, 2004

True Freedom

I'm preaching on Galatians tmw and have once again just been blown away by the message of it. How often do we do things to try and buy our way to God?! How often do we think that even though we have come into relationship with God through faith in Jesus - we can keep ourselves there?! How often do we try and produce fruit in our own lives rather than letting God grow it in us?!

But especialy I've been thinking about who is at the centre of our lives. Paul talks about him no longer being central in his life - that he has been crucified with Christ and that now Jesus is the central thing in his life - his life is no longer his own, it is Christ's. This has been a very real challenge for me recently - I'm not the centre of my life, Jesus is.

It's also had the 70's chorus "It's no longer I that liveth, but Christ that liveth in me" going through my head. Those of you who are as indoctrinated in Christian culture as I (see last post) might know it and shiver with me - although the words are actually quite good! (so much of my knowledge of the Bible does come from good old Scripture in song - but even though I'm appreciative of that doesn't mean I don't cringe!)

Thursday, April 29, 2004

Cultural Imperialism

Just prompted to post about something that's been going around my brain for years - that on this occasion has been prompted by reading about incarnation and cultural imperialism.
I so strongly believe in incarnational mission and about the gospel becoming real for people IN their context and culture and not overlaying all of our Christian culture onto them (I'm trying hard enough to get it out of me - don't want other people to need to do that!).
But I'm struggling because it seems to me that for a whole host of reasons people who become followers of Jesus sometimes want to take on much of the Christian culture ... even when some of those around them are discouraging them from it.

Any thoughts?

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Discerning together

As I've indicated recently on my blog, there are many things going on in my life. I'm both excited by the opportunities that what is happening may open up, as well as scared by the unknownness of it all. There are many decisions to be made in the process.
Which has me thinking about: how do we walk together? Especially, how do we walk together in making decisions? How do we walk with each other in very real ways, looking for where God's at work? How do put ourselves in a position where we let others do that, without wanting them to take responsibility for the decisions we alone can, and need to, make?

I've been thinking about the Quaker "clearing meeting" idea because of Angi's comment of it on her blog a few days ago.
And I've been learning a fair bit about it from practice as I'm incredibly blessed to not only have numbers of ace people who are supporting me in a more general sense at the moment, but a couple of people who are very much walking with me trying to discern what God's up to. While in many ways it's a very lonely journey (how can making decisions be anything but!), I'm learning more about what healthy interdependance in the body of christ looks like than ever before.

Monday, April 19, 2004

The message we heard from Jesus

Been reading some of The Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard recently. One thought from that:
1 John 1:5 says "This is the message we heard from Jesus ..."
What would be the way you would finish that sentence (without looking it up!)? Dallas suggests that how we would finish the sentence would be very telling about who we understand Jesus to be ... and the message as we understand it - I do tend to agree.
So how would you finish the sentence?

Saturday, April 17, 2004

Community vs Individualism

Been thinking a bit about just how individualistic our society is - and how hard it is for us to think in any other ways, how caught we are in our individualistic society. I've especially been thinking about that in comparison to the world of the NT and what it means for us as we think about what it means to be communities of faith in todays world. It seems to me that much of our liquid church type thinking is too individualistic but yet much of the church communities who emphasise belonging and strong commitment are too exclusive and bounded.
How do we challenge ourselves away from our individualism without becoming exclusive and bounded?

Sunday, April 11, 2004


One of my communities has been running the Labyrinth this weekend. It's been great that people have had an opportunity to encounter God in that way - thanks especially to Eddie. I also had an ace time as I walked the Labyrinth. For a range of reasons I decided that I needed to enter while no-one else was in the Labyrinth - representing it being a lonely journey and it being about me and God. So I did. After I'd been in a while some others started. I found out later that they were just passing by and came in to see what was happening - they were people who weren't followers of Jesus, I had a small chat with them and the ace people whose space we were using invited them for dinner and had a really good chat with them. But back to my time in the Labyrinth - it was like God was saying that I needed to enter alone and it will be surprising who will join me. It was really significant for me that the people who joined me weren't people who had diliberately come seeking that experience but rather people who stumbled on it. I so long for that to be my life - for others to join me on the journey and "stumble" over God on the way!

Thursday, April 08, 2004

Loads of Things!

Thanks for showing me that I'm missed when I don't blog guys!!!!

To tell you the truth - I've got to the posting page several times in the last week and really haven't known what to write. There is loads going on for me - my job is likely to change soon and that effects all sorts of things in my life, I've been thinking about all sorts of things but haven't really known the appropriateness to write them.

The thing though that I keep coming back to is: I love God! I'm very, very aware of his sustaining nature. I'm very, very aware of his call of obedience that leads to freedom. I love the way that his work in me leads to a lessening of the brokenness, lostness and darkness in my life.
Easy? Not at all. The adventure of life that brings fulfilment like nothing else? Absolutely!

Probably the words that in many ways sum up some of what's going on in me are in a letter that was written to me by someone who was quite important in my life in my late teens (so written 11 or so years ago now!).

"I am really proud of the way that you've set your heart and mind on the goal of making godliness the priority in your life - even when the sacrifices that you've had to make and the things that you've had to admit to yourself have been painful and difficult. Never let pride, the need to be liked and appreciated or the "easy way" tempt you into sacrificing that goal or the ernestness with which you pursue it. Never let it become less than the first priority in your life and never shy away from making the difficult decisions as ultimately this is the only path to the things that you are desiring the most. Only godliness can bring the sense of purpose, fulfilment and personal worth which we all need. Don't ever let this path become easy or comfortable - always look at your heart and circumstances and evaluate them honestly - it is only by doing this that you'll be able to know where God has brought you so far and where he is leading you next .... Continue in your thirst for learning about him & your desire to live that out in a life of actions that show to others that God is working in you each day to make you more like him. Also don't be afraid to show others that you are weak. Remember that the cross is the power of God to change and that God's grace is sufficient for you in all situations."

I'm sure that the person who wrote that wouldn't have known just how spot on those words were for me (nor that they would be on my blog more than 11 years later!) and wouldn't have a clue just how many times they have been words that have encouraged me on the path of discipleship.

Monday, March 29, 2004

A lovely day

Today I went to my great-great grandfathers grave for the first time with my dad. It was a really special time. We didn't know that he was buried in Melbourne until the last year or two and this was our first chance to go and visit. It was a special day because of that (and I so can't say why family history is so important to me but it deeply deeply is) but also just as one of those almost once in a lifetime special days with dad.

Today will be one of those days I remember all of my life for which I am really thankful

Responding as a Community

Been thinking lots about our individualistic society over recent months. But in particular, I've been thinking about how different it is to what we read in the Bible and how much of a culture gap it is in terms of us not understanding at all God addressing a group of people and us understanding even less what it means to respond to God in repentance and obedience etc as a community of people.

What might it look like today? How do we get better at it?

Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Last blog entry

Well - that was ironic wasn't it!!!!! My computer was stuffing up and I couldn't get Trish's link up properly and in the process of trying to it seems that I kept reposting - it's so amusing that I'm leaving it there - but do make sure you read the one below them all!
(and after it stuffing up it wouldn't let me view my own blog - I left it and went to sleep!)

Tuesday, March 23, 2004


For those of you who regularly read this blog but don't comment - have a look at Trish's blog entry for today. I think she says all that I would want to say. (although I'd prefer you to read and not comment - than not feel that you can read without commenting!)


For those of you who regularly read this blog but don't comment - have a look atTrish's blog entry for today. I think she says all that I would want to say. (although I'd prefer you to read and not comment - than not feel that you can read without commenting!)


For those of you who regularly read this blog but don't comment - have a look at href="http://www.anthonymalloy.com/trishsblog/">Trish's blog entry for today. I think she says all that I would want to say. (although I'd prefer you to read and not comment - than not feel that you can read without commenting!)


For those of you who regularly read this blog but don't comment - have a look at href="http://www.anthonymalloy.com/trishsblog/">Trish's blog entry for today. I think she says all that I would want to say. (although I'd prefer you to read and not comment - than not feel that you can read without commenting!)


For those of you who regularly read this blog but don't comment - have a look at href="http://www.anthonymalloy.com/trishsblog/">Trish's blog entry for today. I think she says all that I would want to say. (although I'd prefer you to read and not comment - than not feel that you can read without commenting!)

Leadership and the New Science

I've been reading a book by Margaret Wheatley called "Leadership and the New Science" - and loving it. I've read bits of it before and been around and discussed many of the concepts but am loving and being refreshed by reading the book through. It's based on quantum physics ideas and what we can learn from that about leadership and organisations. It's one of those books which is a hard balence between "I can't put this down" and "My brain is about to burst".

It talks about having a "values field" and that out of that values field people should have freedom to dream, put into action their ideas etc (not quite true to Margaret's words - but I'm trying to explain stuff in a sentence or two!). One of the things I've been wrestling with heaps in the last few years is just how to help "values field" happen. I'm so against the whole "vision-casting" idea but at the same time recognise that leadership isn't bad. Also know that there is no such thing as an empty value field - there will be something in there. So my million dollar question - how do you enable a community of faith to develop a Jesus centred, biblically based, missional values field, organically and naturally?!
Comments on this one please!

Friday, March 19, 2004

The pursuing God!

I've been thinking alot over the last few months about the way that God pursues us. And I so love it.
I'm so conscious of the way that he constantly pursues us and longs for us to come to him.

Another way I've been thinking about it is God as the wooing, scheming lover.

Sunday, March 14, 2004

Lack of Posting

Very conscious of the lack of posting over the last week or so. Had a number of days off over this time - as well as loads going on! Just returned from being down visiting some friends for a few days - lovely relaxed time away. And last weekend also had three days off (even if Thursday - Saturday not Saturday - Monday like the rest of Melbourne!).
So very in awe of creation and the way we humans develop (wasn't around a baby over the last few days was I!). As well as that lots going on in my brain which I suspect I will blog about soon - doing ethics at college this semester which is giving my brain lots to thinking through.
And with the rest of the world grieving over recent events in Spain.

Friday, March 05, 2004

Making a difference to the Environment!

I care so much about the environment but ... do so little and like many feel so helpless about it.
Was watching TV this morning and David Suzuki was on the Sunrise show and talked about the Nature Challenge - 10 steps that people can do to help the environment. Have a look and see if you can do some?!
But the key summary of what makes a difference: where you live, what you eat, and how you travel.

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

A thought about presenting anything!

Dave had a link to an article about tips for training on his site today: http://www.uiweb.com/issues/issue29.htm (sorry - at home where I still don't know how to do links from properly!).
Interesting article with fairly standard things - though useful.

However, the thing that struck me was one hint: do one risky thing each conference. I've been thinking recently about how easy it is to get into a rut even doing "experimental" things. So I'm going to hear that advice - and not necessarily do one risky thing everytime I'm running something - but frequently

Monday, March 01, 2004

Window into my brain this morning

I'm having one of those mornings when you are just in awe of the world!

I love those rare days when i get to see the sunrise - and today was one of those - and was this mornings Melbourne sunrise a treat this morning! When your day starts with something like that - how could you but be in awe of the world!

The other thing my day started with that I'm pondering is the story of the Good Samaritan. The words in the version I was reading went something like this "he wanted to justify himself so he asked 'Who is my neighbour?'" - pondering how often we ask questions like that to justify ourselves or avoid the truth.

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

Openness in our lives

A couple of weeks ago I had a lovely dinner with someone I had never met before - a friend of a friend who is in Melbourne. We talked about many things but one of them really stood out to me.
She is visiting Melbourne for a month and we were reflecting on the way she had been invited into peoples lives. Now on this occasion some Christians as well as non-Christians had done quite well at inviting her to be part of what they were doing.
But we had a conversation about how often as Christians we are involved in so many things that actually we can't ask other people into - certainly not at a casual level like "I'm doing this on Tuesday night do you want to join me". Our lives are so often taken up with "closed" events.
I've been conscious of this for the last few years and trying to rearrange my life so that the majority of the things I do are "open" rather than "closed" things but it's good to be made particularly conscious of it again ... actually because of how much a non-Christian friend of this person has been welcoming

Thursday, February 19, 2004


I heard a great talk the other day about us being the salt of the earth and the light of the world. And it's got me thinking lots about the implications of Jesus saying to us that we are the salt of the earth.
Salt is a preserving substance. So Jesus is saying (amongst other things) that we are preserving elements in the earth ... but the bit that really got me was how he goes on to say if salt loses it's saltiness how can it be made salty again. So if we lose our preserving nature - it's not saying how will the world be preserved but rather how will we be preserved.
So if we are not being the salt that we are, have been created to be, then we lose the saltiness that is our very essence.
Pretty huge implications really, I think

Monday, February 16, 2004

9.10am this morning

This is the kind of blog entry that Trish delights in, not my normal style - but as it was happening it occured to me that if it happened to Trish it would end up on her blog. So an entry dedicated to Trish!

At the office this morning I was making a co-worker a coffee. He had gone to get milk and as he came back, I asked him if he had sugar. He replied, "there's some there". I asked again, he looked at me strangely and said "yes we've got some". Once again, quite baffled really, I said "no do you have suger". He realised what I was meaning and we both proceeded to drink our coffee, milk with two sugars.
It was after all just after 9am on a Monday morning!

Emerging Church thoughts

Some people have been doing much thinking over rcent weeks about what exactly the Emerging Church is. This discussion led Steve Taylor to do an A-Z of the Emerging Church.
Also Darren has been blogging every couple of days of a few of the key things he has learnt through Living Room. This is Part E - which has lesson 8 & 9 and from there you can get to the previous posts.

Thursday, February 12, 2004


How much is the stuff that many of us talk about a Gen X thing? That has been one of the questions that I have been asking recently.
Over the last six months or so I have been thinking about how I so easily think of "millenials" (or whatever you want to call those born from about 1980 onwards) as having the same characteristics as my age group - and that is so not a correct assumption. Both generations hate to be lumped all together ... but there are some key things that define us. I've been helped in my thinking about this at a couple of conferences/talks I've been too where Fuzz Kitto and Mark Sayers respectively have talked about generations including "Millenials". And been quite embarrassed as I've realised just how much I haven't considered the difference (the sociologist part of me squirms to admit such a thing!).

There are plenty of things written about the various differences but one thing that I wonder about is whether much of what many see as some of the characteristics of the "Emerging Church" (for want of a different name - definately wanting to avoid the current debate about that name) - are they characteristics of an incarnational church for Gen X but maybe not actually characteristics of what an incarnational church might look like for Millenials? Certainly the "missional impulse" would be the same but maybe some things like the liquidity would look different.

Pondering and unsure.

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Yet another link!

I am doing lots of thinking myself and there is much that I could write about at the moment - but others are doing some great writing too ... and I will eventually get to writing some of the many things in my brain.
But for now: yet another link -
There is a great entry by Andrew Hamilton in Perth about Loving Jesus and letting that overflow in our lives. One of the many things I'm thinking about lots at the moment.

Monday, February 09, 2004

Some New Blogs on my Blog Roll

I've added a few links to others blogging about similar things, the person who writes Backyard Missionaries is based in Perth and those writing Signposts and Neurotribe are based in Melbourne. You might like to have a read of their blogs.
Corporate Mission

A while ago I blogged about my question of whether we should encourage people in "individual mission" or "corporate mission". It's something I've been doing lots of thinking about recently.
Darren has done a FAB job at putting how I think about it on his blog! Have a read.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Great Article

Just read this great article by David Beales. It's a longish article - although worth a read - about the way their church plant in England has developed. But this paragragh directly relates to my post the other day:
"The paradigm shift is simple. Whereas in the church paradigm, church gives shape to mission, in the mission paradigm, mission gives shape to church. Much church planting is church cloning, springing out of the church paradigm. Take between 20 and 70 people out of an existing church and they'll usually plant a church which looks like the one from which they came."

He also talks about the "Heineken principle" - reaching out to those that others can't reach. Interesting!

Monday, February 02, 2004

Poem of my Day

I read a poem today that I love - I've read it many times but today it hit me in a new way. It's a poem by a poet I love called Faith by Studdert Kennedy. A friend of mine first recited it to me when she was learning it and then a guy from one of my communities who knew I was enjoying some of his poems found a book of his poems in a second bookshop and gave it to me!

But today these words struck me:
"I bet my life on Beauty, Truth, And Love, not abstract but incarnate Truth."

Beauty, Truth and Love - that certainly describes the God I know.

Friday, January 30, 2004

Christology - Missiology - Ecclesiology

A statement that I have heard quite a bit is:
"Christology should inform our missiology which should inform our ecclesiology".
(it's probably someone in particular's quote but I have no idea of the originator of it - if anyone knows do let me know so I can give credit where credit is due!)

What?, you say. That is, what we know of Jesus and who he is and what we believe/know about him should inform how we live that message out/share that with others which in turn should inform the way we be/do church, the people of God.
Think about it for a while and I suspect that it will transform how you think about these things, and even more how you live them, like it has, and is even more at the moment, transforming mine.

I think often as Christians we separate all of these things our view of Jesus in one corner, our mission in another and our view of how church should be in another, or we certainly do it in a different order to this. I think often the way we do church (ecclesiology) comes first or at least second and especially informs how we do mission rather than the other way around.

I've been asking myself how would my life change if I really lived with these things informing each other in this order? What would look different?

Thursday, January 29, 2004

I've had a number of conversations over the last couple of years about handling the amount of information and contactability that is "available" to us these days, if not pressed upon us .... including some conversations with people who may be reading this blog.
If that topic interests you, you may well be interested in this article about Bit Literacy (http://www.goodexperience.com/columns/04/0128.bitliteracy.html) which Dave put on his site and which I found quite interesting.

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Reading a book at the moment by Sally Morgenthaler "Worship Evangelism" and loving thinking about the need to provide spaces where people can encounter God. It's helping me even more passionate than normal about our gatherings and our lives giving people opportunity to have an encounter with God - not just telling people about God.

Sunday, January 25, 2004

Great blog entry

Here's a great blog entry by Justin about missional communities - don't agree with what he's saying but he raises questions that I wrestle with. You might like to have a look: Missional Communities blog entry

Friday, January 23, 2004

Spirituality Interest

Somethings been really bugging me lately - the way so many Christians think that people outside the church aren't interested in spirituality ... and I so disagree with that!
In my experience, people are so much more interested in spirituality than most people in the church give the impression of ... and are quite insulted by the implication that they are not interested in spirituality ... often they are more passionate about their search for meaning/God/an experience of the "Other" than we in the church & search for it in more genuine ways

Thursday, January 22, 2004

A Predicament

Here's the situation a friend of mine found herself in.
One of her friends is involved in a political/activism group, that my friend also has an interest in, and was heading up some times on holistic health within that scene. My friend, naturally, was invited to take part. Along the way she discovered that one of the people involved/going was quite into spells and that kind of thing and wanted to do chant type stuff over everyone. Should she go?
Two opposed lines of thoughts:
Firstly, going opens you up to a range of spiritual influences.
Secondly, what better opportunity to be a presence of the kingdom!

What do you think?

Monday, January 19, 2004


Almost out of nowhere I started thinking about the concept of allegience today. It was like a thought completely left of centre that just made alot of sense. Not sure if words can give it justice - but I'll try.
I thought about how in an army or when I think about things like ancient times - the concept of someone changing their allegience from one kingdom, one persons ways of doing things to another seems very real and natural. You need to de-program yourself from the ways of kingdom y because you now belong to kingdom x.
Struck me in a new way that is what it is like for us who are followers of Jesus - our allegience is a changed thing, and that it is about learning slowly but surely what that allegience to Jesus and the kingdom of God means.
All stuff I've even talked about heaps - but today a new level of hit my wholistic understanding.
And the key question - am I spelling allegience correctly?
Blogging Quiz

For those of you who are bloggers, you might like to take this blogging quiz - I enjoyed and came up with a score that indicated that I was a dediated blogger but that I still had a social life. That's about right!
Here is the url - I am still trying to work out how to put links in.

Sunday, January 18, 2004

I have been conscious that I haven't written for awhile - but also conscious that I'm quite tired and while I have been thinking of plenty of things to write about they aren't quite coming at the time I could sit down and write.
One of the many things that I have pondered in the last week has been "what does it mean to be the presence of the kingdom of God in the world"?
I wonder what it means for you today?

Monday, January 12, 2004

Email Lists and Web Communication

One of my communities email list has had a sudden influx of emails about the bible and questions that the Old Testament raises about the character of God and that kind of thing - which has then prompted a discussion about the usage of the email list and about email/web communication - all good stuff actually.
One of the questions has been around the fact (?) that you don't have body language etc to mitigate and filter what you say in email/web communication. I have been thinking about that and the various forums in which I am part of web communities of sorts. In my experience, where you have some experience of the person, or knowledge of the person, then you read what is written in email or discussion through your knowledge of them - and that picture builds over time and interaction, however that interaction is. I do think that physical interaction is important but that is where the strength of the kind of email forum I am talking about comes in - it is one of many interactions possible within the given community, with plenty of other types of interaction possible.
Within all this I've been thinking about the difference in the way people view things like web communication and have blinkers on the types of communications they consider "normal" - even though the questions raised about web communication are perfectly valid and helpful too.
I have also been thinking about emotion, tone and freedom in such communication.
Just small issues!

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

In Adelaide - sightseeing and stuff of the like, having been with a Beach Mission team for a few days in Port Fairy ... lots of time to be prompted by things to blog about (now in an internet cafe):

First thing that has been prompting thought in me is the Parable of the Weeds - have a read of it. But the thing it made me think about is that it seems to be a kingdom principle to let both the good (the wheat) and the bad (the weeds) grow side by side so that in pulling out the weeds you don't kill the wheat that is there. I think so often I see weeds and want to get rid of them straight away and in doing so actually kill wheat along the way. What do you reckon? What thoughts does it prompt for you?

I've been reading a book called Mass Culture - different perspectives on Communion. Been thinking about whether this meal that Jesus instituted is for his followers and the role that it has for people who are not followers of Jesus What do you reckon?