Tuesday, June 24, 2008

One Hit Wonder

Have advertised this before, but I reckon it's a really simple, easy to support cause.

All they ask is you give them a dollar, which they then give to the worlds poorest communities.

They're trying to raise like 7 million dollars, which means that 1% of the population of the internet would have to donate $1.

I'm pretty sure my blog readership isn't quite that high, but I'm doing my bit!

Get amongst it!

Life as a sermon

I thought about this a couple of weeks back, and again this week as I'm preparing to speak at a local church.

I find quite often that when I'm preparing for a sermon or talk or something at church, I always find myself being extra aware of making sure that I'm 'switched on God-wise' in my preparation and planning. Obviously when you get up to preach to a group, you want your words to be inspired by God, not just your own drivel.

But as I was thinking about that the other day, I was challenged to think about why it is that it's only in those times that I'm extra aware of putting in time and effort into my spiritual life?

Particularly in the kind of work that I do, and the kind of life that I lead, most people I come in contact with with never hear me preach-my life is my sermon. The idea about God that people get from me will not be from my words but my actions.

Now obviously that is not a particularly new thought or idea really, but I guess I've been challenged lately as to what it would look like for me to really and truly live that, and what difference that should make in my life.

I once heard somebody say that you should spend at least 3 times the length of your sermon in prayer and preparation time-which in reality is a bare minimum. I don't think it's possible to spend 3 times as long as I'm with people, with God, but it certainly is a challenging thought-particularly for an extrovert like me who spends 9% of my day with people!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

What to do with sexual offenders?

A very good friend of mine and I have been having this debate for ages, so thought I would chuck it up on here and see what others thought.

Basically, her idea is that all repeat sexual offenders should be either physically or chemically castrated. I clarified this morning and she includes females in this (although I must admit I'm not sure how you would do that with women or what effect it would have).

Having seen and dealt with far too many young women dealing with the long-lasting effects of all sorts of sexual assault, I can see where she's coming from, but completely disagree.

I agree that just putting people into prison doesn't work with these kind of situations (and I'm not convinced it completely works in many other situations either-but thats another story) and that extensive counselling/therapy/psychological treatment is needed. I know that's not 100% effective either, but I just think castration is a bit full on.

I'm not sure, maybe I am a bit biased as a male and the thought of doing that to another man irks me, and I am basing my decision on that rather than anything else. I've wanted to kick some guys in the nuts for what they've done to girls I've known, but effectively making somebody into an asexual being seems just a bit over the top.

The other thing is, that at the end of the day, I just can't see it ever becoming law in this country, I really just can't see it happening.

Is an interesting debate anyway, and raises a whole lot of questions about the role of the Govt and law, the question for me as a Christian of forgiveness, the effectiveness of our justice system etc etc.

Love to hear what others think.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

33 333 Visitors

I checked today and I have had exactly 33 333 visitors to this blog in it's lifetime, which if you believe the Christians who are really into the meanings of numbers in the Bible-is a great thing!

To preserve that perfect number, I want nobody to ever visit this blog again! But if you're reading this, it means you have already visited and ruined my beautiful trinatarian number arrangement! Dammit!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Coach Carter

Tomorrow is my first full blown effort at coaching a school sports team, the mighty Yr 7 Mt Erin AFL team.

I've learnt that a lot of the drills we do at senior training don't always work with these guys, and that maybe expecting them to get goal to goal without it touching the ground is a bit much. I think Zone Defence on the kickouts also went over their heads.

I'm off to bed early now so I can be up and raring to go with my CSM voice like the dude in Full Metal Jacket. I may have to swear and abuse the kids a little less than he does though...

I also need to make sure I'm o top of my own game as we're playing Somerville this week and half the kids from the school will be there to watch so I'd better practice what I preach to the kids!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

SYG=success

Had another quality weekend away at SYG over the past weekend, #8 for me, and probably the best weather wise. The one weekend of the year I'm glad for global warming!

This year we went as the PHAT (the Peninsula's Hottest Athletic Team) and in terms of sport, were the least successful we've ever been, but had ripper fun anyway.

We won the Basketball B and made the finals of everything else that we entered. We will have to work harder on and off the track next year to make sure we don't choke so often!

We lost footy for the first time ever to Ringwood CoC, who we have beaten in every semi or grand final the last 3 years, so they were stoked for a bit of revenge! Was a great game and lots of fun. I still reckon I won on the trash talking front though!!

Kim Hammond from Forge was the main speaker,a dn I thought he spoke brilliantly-despite being a smart-arse and mentioning me as the infamous prodigal son in the story of the same name. It was a really simple, clear message that was relevant to heaps of people-very very hard to do at SYG, and it was very well received.

Was up late getting all my assignments in beforehand, so was fair knackered going in, but still got through OK, and am so stoked to not still be doing any essays today!

So all in all, yet another great weekend at SYG, with a special thanks to Jesse T for doing all our organising.

Lion hugging lady...

woman found an injured, malnourished lion that was

near death. She took him home and took care of him.



When the lion recovered, she called the local zoo to

give him a proper home.



This was the reaction she got when the lion saw her

again for the first time.


I dunno how legit this is, but it's a nice story and cool video either way!

Friday, June 06, 2008

Most confusing parable ever...

As I head off to the coldest weekend in the history of the world-State Youth Games, I leave this parable for you to all ponder, even though half of my readers will probably be down there as well!

Anywho, I expect the rest of you readers to have come up with an interpretation of this that makes any sense at all by the time I get back on Monday! Well at least come up with something better than the rubbish I came up with for my essay!

Luke 16
The Parable of the Shrewd Manager
1Jesus told his disciples: "There was a rich man whose manager was accused of wasting his possessions. 2So he called him in and asked him, 'What is this I hear about you? Give an account of your management, because you cannot be manager any longer.'
3"The manager said to himself, 'What shall I do now? My master is taking away my job. I'm not strong enough to dig, and I'm ashamed to beg— 4I know what I'll do so that, when I lose my job here, people will welcome me into their houses.'

5"So he called in each one of his master's debtors. He asked the first, 'How much do you owe my master?'

6" 'Eight hundred gallons[a] of olive oil,' he replied.
"The manager told him, 'Take your bill, sit down quickly, and make it four hundred.'

7"Then he asked the second, 'And how much do you owe?'
" 'A thousand bushels[b] of wheat,' he replied.
"He told him, 'Take your bill and make it eight hundred.'

8"The master commended the dishonest manager because he had acted shrewdly. For the people of this world are more shrewd in dealing with their own kind than are the people of the light. 9I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.


I've heard Mike Frost explain it really well one day, but have totally forgotten what he said, so any help appreciated :)

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Matt 18:21-35

Check out the link for this other interesting story.

Again, initially it seems to be bth about how much God forgives us, and how much we should forgive others. Both good points, and not bad things to conclude.

But if you look at v.21-22, they are about how much we should forgive others, but then v.34 shows the master not following these directions himself. If we read the master as a God figure, then it leads to some interesting questions.

I haven't really thought this one through fully yet, just some initial questions.

Whilst we're in the mood for discussion

Other than writing log posts, I am actuay in the middle of writing an essay right now, about Jesus' parables and how they relate to power and wealth. Interesting,a nd time-consuming.

Am going through a fascinating book that really deconstructs a lot of the parables and queries any assumptions that we have often thought to be true.

Like Matt 25:14-19 which we have often understood to be about how we should use the talents and gifts God has given us-which seems to be quite a reasonable conclusion.

But, if you look into the social system of the day, and realise how much somebody like the landowner had to screw people over to make money, and more specifically how much his servants would have been exploitng people to make that money, you wonder if the 3rd servant was actually the one who did the right thing by not particiating in the landowner's exploitative practices...

And on the subject, if anybody can throw some light on 'Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him' in v.29 that'd be most helpful.

Just for the record...

I don't actually advocate the slapping of Kiwi's, I'm sure that the whole country can't be blamed for Russel Crowe...

Just wanted to cover myself in case somebody slaps a Kiwi and tries to blame me for provoking them!

Seriously though, this whole joke thing has triggered a whole bunch of debate I never thought it would, which in itself is quite funny to me.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

When to help and not

Had an interesting, but short, discussion last night about something that has been on my mind for a while now.

It's about when we are the ones to chase up others about somethign we can help them with, or how much we make them chase us down. If somebody needs your help-finanicaily, emotionally or whatever, do they haev to ask for it, or should you offer. Do you just help somebody out and give them a way out, or let them suck it up and feel the consequences of their bad decisions.

Particuarly in mentoring situations, do I as the mentor chase them up to catch up cos I know they have stuff they need to work through, or just let them float on with their life and wait for them to aknowledge the crap that needs working through (and potentially let it fester into something worse) or not.

And within al of that you need to be aware of the potential for you to think that the other person's welbeing is all about you, and forget that often you are just another cog in the wheel.

Just some stuff I've been processing over the last little while.

Would Jesus have been funny?

According to an anonymous commenter, my last post was too offensive, and not something Jesus would have laughed at. I obviously disagree-but that's another issue.

This commenter aso raised the question 'Would Jesus laugh at all?' which to me is a no-brainer, as he was human and laughter is a natural human emotion/response to an emotion.

But the more intriguing (althought completely irrelevant) question is whether or not He would have been funny? It's not recorded anywhere in the Gospels-but arguing from exclusion is a poor argument anyway, but I wonder if he would have started off the Sermon On The Mount with a couple of gags? Probably not in that case, but I'd like to think in other cases he did, that he was a funny guy. Not sure why, but is just an image I like, of him cracking jokes and mucking around with the disciples.

Anyway, just an interesting thought for the day.