Thursday, December 31, 2009

Twittering New Years Eve in the City

We live right at the base of the Southern Side of the approach to the Harbour Bridge. So, we are right there in the thick of it for New Year's Eve in Sydney. Should be noisy and fun.

Last year, Michael Winram and I hacked it out in Time Square in the cold. No such suffering this year.

It's 4PM on the 31st now. It's 77F, 25C, and we going to stroll the City with the kids now until maybe 6-7PM. Then we'll cook up a BBQ on the deck here, while watching the mayhem begin.

I'm hoping my kids don't learn any new words tonight -- maybe put them to sleep in the more 'sound-proofed' rooms. We may head out to the apartment of a couple who go to our church. And I could be climbing the Church Bell Tower or York Street for a view of the fireworks at midnight.

Will be Twittering HERE.

It should be interesting to be in the middle of it!

Enjoy your New Year.

Justin.

______________



Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Cost of Sin in Dollars


Click HERE.

Hooley Dooley.

_________________

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas> Would you prefer to bury him? (Herod's thirst)

Service Times are HERE.

And this is the introduction (basically) for our 11PM Service tonight:

Questions for you this evening…
  • How far will you go to find your creator?
  • How willing are you to beat a path to his door?
  • How thirsty are you to discover him? To locate him?
  • And then to love him and pay him reverence?
That is the question of our text this Evening (Matthew 2:1-18). The Wise Men go and find Jesus. They beat a path to his door.

But, in contrast, Herod sees how much this baby affects his life. And he goes to dark lengths to get him out of his life.

See, all of us –We live and we love and owe our existence because we were created by God to live and love and exist. I breathe because God allows me to breathe. Will I seek after my creator? Will I seek him with all that I am, and all that I have?

There is a verse in the Bible that goes like this:
'God determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. 'For in him we live and move and have our being.'
Have you thought about this?

God has placed you here in this city for a reason: That you might seek him and perhaps reach out and find him. He has you in this room to seek him and perhaps reach out and find him.

How is your heart? Is it reaching out to discover him?

I suspect – because I know my own heart – that many of us are lethargic in this one area. Except maybe on Christmas time. We are lethargic to God, and Christmas is like caffeine for God: A season – oiled by carols and traditions.

That’s not true in other areas in our life: Many of us are willing to beat a path to other things: Like the better job.

We are very thirsty –
  • For affection,
  • Or for approval,
  • Or for beauty,
  • Or for a child,
  • Or a spouse,
  • Or for a life of joy and ease.
  • We know how to track down a bargain.
And yet – if there really is a God-- and I know many of you think that there is – Then, surely, God must consume your heart and mind and actions.

There is the alternative question this morning with respect to God…
  • Would you prefer to bury him?
  • To make God go away?
  • Maybe even to find him in order to bury him.
(This is why some come to church)

That is what is going on in our text when the King Herod tries to find Jesus.

Now, I know you don’t think that you can actually do that: Bury God. But functionally, is that your preference? In terms of the way you operate your day, is that how you live?

That is: “I don’t want him running my life, and so I’ll find a way to make him go away.”

So in our text today (Matthew 2:1-18), we one who searches (Wise Men) and one who buries (Herod).

Which are you?

.................

___________________________



Saturday, December 12, 2009

In Defence of Schoolies

I'm won't, but Adele Horan writes in defence of Schoolies Week HERE. She says of those who won't go:
Unless your Year 12 son or daughter is ...
  • a strong-minded non-conformist,
  • a loner,
  • a Christian,
  • or a super-nerd...
... chances are that some time soon they will pop the question.

['Can I go to Schoolies?']
What do you make of that list?


______________________

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Praying for Healing

There are at least three people I know how are right now undergoing treatment for cancer. I am praying for two things: total healing of the illness and that all glory goes to God. These two are not synonymous. He may not heal (now), but he will receive all glory. That being said, these are my two prayers.

God knows who they are.

Friday, December 04, 2009

York Street Advent Preaching Program

Christmas is what you need. We need:
  • a Prophet who Challenges
  • a Song that Magnifies
  • a Hope that Satisfies
  • a Judge that Redeems
  • a Fear that Drives away fear
  • a Messiah who Saves
  • a Son who reveals
And so here is the preaching program through Advent and Christmas, starting SUNDAY

This Sunday, 6 Dec (Advent 2) -- Luke 3:7-18
John: You need a PROPHET (that challenges your Life)

13 Dec (Advent 3) -- Luke 1:46-58
Mary: You need a SONG (that magnifies your God)

13 Dec (Carol Service 7PM) -- Luke 2:22-40
Simeon: You need a HOPE (that satisifies your longings)

20 Dec (Advent 4) -- Luke 1:67-80
Zechariah: We need a JUDGE (to redeem our world)

24 Dec (Christmas Eve) 11PM -- Luke 2:8-20
Shepherds: You need a FEAR (that takes away your fear)

25 Dec (Christmas Day) -- Luke 2:1-11
Jesus: You need a MESSIAH (that saves you from your sin)

27 Dec (Sunday After Christmas) -- Luke 2:41-52
Jesus: You need a SON (to show you his Father)

Now, anyone know where I can find Eggnog in Australia?

____________________


Live Out Loud: Tickets at the Door...


TONIGHT (FRIDAY 4TH DECEMBER, 2009)
Buy your tickets at the door.
DOORS OPEN: 6:30PM
www.loudevent.com


Friday, November 27, 2009

Blogging London #5: The Lunchtime Business Partnerships

St Helen's began in the 1960's with a ministry to the London Business Community. I'm glad, because one of our 6 communities is the Sydney Business Community. So we have a model, then.

In 1961, Dick Lucas was preaching to the business community (mostly men) who worked in London. St Helen's was a (mostly empty) 13th Century church near The Bank of England, Lloyds of London etc. But it was a tiny community on Sundays ('a few people and 2 cats'). Apparently, the main income of the church was brass rubbings!

But there were keen partnerships in place that allowed both the Lunchtime Ministry and the Church to grow. From the partnerships, the Sunday Ministry grew.

I saw the big Tuesday Lunchtime meeting, which was good. Mark O'Donahue (top guy) leads the ministry there. I was able to visit with Chris Fishlock (ditto Mark) and his team at the Fleet Street Talks. At the Fleet Street Talks, I was able to get under the 'scaffolding' to see how they do it. And it is about prayer and teaching the Bible. Sure. But it is more that that: it is about forming partnerships to reach their colleagues.

So -- what have I seen that would be helpful at the York Street Forums?

Partnerships.

I saw deliberate, prayerful, passionate partnerships in the Business Community. They invite people specifically to partner with them in reaching the city.

We haven't really developed partnerships of prayer and passion at the York Street Forum. Not this year. Sure, we preach Christ at the York Street Forums, and we teach the Bible (with interaction and Questions etc). All good. That's our job. But we need more.

Now, here is a confession. I plead grace in this: we have been in Sydney for 10 months etc. But we haven't included the *actual* business community in our plans and prayers. Can you believe it? We've just got a preaching program, and a time and a space.

I've been wondering why good men and good women (who are passionate about Christ) have come to the ministries for a month or two, and then we never see them again. Truth is, we haven't invited people to partner with us: in prayer, support, evangelism, training, care and support for their colleagues in the office.

I've got more thoughts. But this is all Ill say right now.

___________________
Pic on Flickr by Kevin Danks.

Blogging London #4: 'I'll fight the battles'

Heard this great story while in London about the early days of St Helen's:

When new Rector Dick Lucas came to the city to begin his work in the early 1960s (he was just a little younger than I am now), he had some very faithful and committed people who persuaded him to step up and do the work. They were evangelists; they were givers, they were bringers of friends. And they supported Dick all the way. It was great to hear that. I heard this great report of one of them. A Colonel (now departed) from World War 2 came up to Dick one day and said to him:
"Dick, you are the Bible Teacher. I am the soldier. You teach the Bible. I'll fight the battles."
I am praying for more saints like that here at York Street, and all over Sydney.

I have three more posts on 'Blogging London', that I'm hoping to post today. Three topic areas:

1. The Lunchtime Business Ministry
2. The 'Read, Mark, Learn' Bible Study Program
3. The Associate Program (MTS)

____________________


Sunday, November 22, 2009

Are you British, or are you American?


Are you British, or are you American?

As in, which do you choose if you had to?

Ich Bin Ein ________________?

Make your choice. You can't say 'both'.

______________


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Blogging London #3: Two things I learnt on Sunday

I missed a post for yesterday. But Laurel and I have been sun-up to sun-down with people and churches.

Best part about the whole experience is being with Laurel. We have been free to simply listen and learn and look at Churches without the pressure of leading one (me) or of rounding up kids all day (Laurel). We have grown closer.

Tuesday was all day with St Helens. (With their MTS program; their city lunchtime ministry; their staff meetings; personal meetings; 'Read, Mark, Learn' study and then dinner with Mark O'Donoghue and his lovely wife, Claire.)

Today was a day at Co-Mission Initiative. Co-Mission is not a city church, but they are bold. So they are good to be around. It is infectious. Richard Coekin was kind enough to give us near 2 hours of this time. He was challenging, as he always is. We are going to have to spend some time sifting through his challenges.

Tonight, Laurel and I went to All Souls to witness their training Program run by an magnetic person called Wanyeki Mahiaini.

Lots to say, but I wanted to post two things from Sunday I learnt that at St Helen's that are helpful for York Street:

1. A Financial District Church can grow to a vibrant church of thousands.

Guess how many people *live* near St Helen's?

Go on. Guess.

None.

Zilch.

Nada.

Maybe 4 people, says William Taylor.

The Church is situated in a place *worse* than St Philip's with respect to residents. People said to us over and over that St Philip's is not a good place because nobody lives nearby. But it's simply not true. About 20 people walk to St Philip's each Sunday. Many of them new this year.

And there are 38, 000 people that could walk to York Street (Postcodes 2000, 2007 and 2009). These are one of the communities we are trying to reach: those who live nearby.

The concept of the Sydney CBD being non-residential is wrong for three reasons:

1. Folklore -- We retell the stories about the time when people were leaving the city for the backyards;
2. Comparative -- we simply compare it to the amount of people working in the city, which swaps the residential population (good thing);
3. Not forward looking -- The City of Sydney is growing as a residential area. Take a look at this.

But here is what I love about St Helen's: *no one* lives nearby, and people *still* come, and they bring their friends. In fact, their friends come because its in the Square Mile, and so everyone knows where it is!

And more than that, if the prayer is bold, the vision is right, the Bible taught with passion and insight and people are trained to serve, then they will come.

It's simply got to be worth it.

That's all.

2. An Historic Church can be forward looking.

St Philip's York Street is old. Oldest Parish in Australia. It has its links on the First Fleet! And we have been given watch over a very old and grand building (the colours, the light and the symmetry are stunning). I like the space. And so do many others.

Of course, this kind of building can very quickly become a liability as people think more about the age and nature of the building, rather than of Jesus and his Kingdom. People can easily give up the best for the good.

We want the building to be an asset, not a liability. Not neutral either. Just used for the Glory of God.

Now -- we are 221 years old.

But guess how old St Helen's is?

Go on. Guess.

The Year of our Lord, 1210.

You heard it.

Like, 800 years old. It escaped the Fire of London. Shakespeare may have worshipped there. It's an Indiana Jones kind of building. Seriously. There are dead people entombed where we all had coffee.

And yet their building is wonderfully used for the Gospel, as it should be!

Now, I know that the conditions are different. London is different. The history is different.

But it can happen.

It'll be a long project. And we need people to pray, and people to join, and people to serve and reach out to their friends. But I've seen something of what it can look like here in London.

If you wish to join us next year and grow this thing under God, shoot me through an email with the Words: "I'm in".

___________________


Blogging London #2: Initial Impressions of St Helen's

I've only ever edited two pages on Wikipedia: one of them was on the St Helen's Wikipedia page. A couple of years ago, someone had used a pejorative word in their description of St Helen's, and I changed it to the current description: that it is is a 'conservative evangelical' Church. I'd never been to St Helen's, but I couldn't stand the slander.

But now I have visited the church that I once defended -- even if in an ever so small and virtual way. It is and ancient space (the building goes back to the 13th Century), and it is a city space. I get it.

Dr Laurel and I went to three meetings yesterday: 10.30AM, 4PM and 6PM. And in between, we had lunch with the Fishlock family: Greet peeps, and lovely kids. Chris is a curate at St Helen's -- about my age. I'll tell you more about him later in the week.

I heard three sermons from three different preachers: from William Taylor (Rector), Chris Fishlock (Curate) and Andrew Sachs (Curate). Three clear and insightful messages. A touch of humour in each. Each of them actually set up an issue by asking a question. And then they spoke to the issue, answering from the Scriptures. In other words, not a dud sermon in the day! :)

The most new thing that happened was that there were five adult baptisms. Five adults changing their mind about God. Five adults repenting before Jesus.

I was expecting the usual Anglican sprinke thing. But wooden boards were opened up before us, revealing a massive Baptismal pool in the floor of the church. I love it! Apparently it was Dick Lucas' idea after the IRA bombed nearby in the 1990s, leaving room for creative refurbishment of the ancient space.

Three of the five candidates for Baptism spoke movingly of their conversion. They spoke about what attracted them to Jesus. And each got fully dunked. Lots of joy and laughter and fun. And meaning.

I brought two church two people who are getting married at St Philip's next March. They live in London, so I brought them to church (naturally). I think that they may have been a little startled by it all -- there were about 400/500 young people in the room. And with this Baptism, it was hard not to be confronted by the authenticity of their faith.

One other thing I noticed: the music was joyful. And there didn't appear to be any tiredness; nor cynicism, which is something I see in some Australian churches from time to time. But who can tell from one meeting, right?

I also noticed three specific things that are relelvant for St Philips as a City Church. These I'll share tomorrow.

____________________________

Monday, November 16, 2009

Favourite Pic so far...

The Little Lady (with her old New York friend) in Central Park Zoo. Click to see bigger picture.

Should this be a caption Competition?

_______________________


Blogging London #1: Reasons for Visiting

(These posts will be blogged at a special Site at York Street Anglican.)

I'm in London. So is Dr Laurel. Nice. The kids are safe (Stateside) and having a great time with their grandparents. We miss them. We also miss our friends at St Philip's ( I heard that yesterday was a wonderful time with Ugandan preacher Alfred Olwa).

And yet being here is a gift of the Spirit to us, and so we are thankful to God. I'm going to Blog my trip, if that's OK by you.

Why are we here? The first reason that we are taking a break. We haven't really rested since July 08. We've taken a few days, but that was all in a Trans-Pacific move: hardly a break. So we are in the US for Thanksgiving with Dr Laurel's parents. We also visited dear friends at Christ Church NYC. All this explains why we are overseas, but not why we are in the UK.

The reason for being in London? When I arrived at York Street Anglican, I realised the obvious: that Sydney has very few models for doing church in a *financial district*. The Cathedral is our only viable model, as far as I can see.

In America (New York City in particular), the 'city' is a huge area that is basically urbanised (rather than sub-urbanised). If you or your neighbours have a detached home or a backyard, it is 'suburbs'. If it doesn't, its 'city'. So there are something like 8 million people in the 'city' of New York. But many of them live in residential areas. So Christ Church NYC was on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, which is a residential area. Wall Street is a financial district. And the Upper East Side is as far away from Wall St as Roseville is from the City of Sydney. See the Google Map.

But when Sydneysiders think of 'city', they really do mean the Central Business District. And maybe Pyrmont and Ultimo. (The official 'City of Sydney' also includes some Inner Western, Eastern and Southern suburbs, but the city usually refers to the 40,000 or so that live in the CBD, as well as all the people who work, govern, perform, buy and sell in the CBD.) And the suburbs are basically 5 minutes drive away. Even if those homes are not large, they are still what you might call 'suburbs'.

So we are in a new situation.

St Philip's York Street is located in a Business District. I know this because every 'bus that comes off the Harbour Bridge stops outside my home. I go to bed knowing how many people are still at work in the Suncorp Building. I can 'touch' Centrepoint from our balcony. It's finance and cubicles all around us. There are lots of residents within walking distance of our church, but it feels like business and commerce.

So we quickly realised that there are not many growing, vital and innovative churches in financial districts. Not even in NYC. The one church I knew was in the same position is St Helen's Bishopsgate in London. There were a group of us at York Street that surmised that it would be a good idea to see St Helen's at some stage.

As it would happen, I met the Rector of St Helen's at the Engage Conference in Katoomba in October. I had coffee with William Taylor, telling him about the excitement of being in the city, the passion we have to reach both workers and residents in the city, and of the enormous potential of growing a church in this central space.

He invited us to visit London in his classic English way: 'Do come.'

So York Street have sent us here to look at their ministries (mid-week Business ministries in particular), as well as at All Souls, and the Co-mission Initiative.

Laurel has joined me to see things firsthand, have some down time, as well as look at how family and children's minstries are configured in this City.

So here we are as guests of William and Janet Taylor. We have just come home from a day of church. And we have lots to report.

But I'll leave that for the next post. Stop by soon.

_________________________
Pic on Flickr by Anirudh_Koul.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Want to buy a Redeemer Church Planting Manual?

Hey Australian Planters, check on this: THE GENEVA PUSH. Great work.

Also -- I spent a great lunch this week in NYC with my friend Mark Reynolds from the Redeemer Church Planting Center. Great guy, with a heart for God. While I was visiting, I asked Redeemer about getting their Church Planting Manual sent to Australia. I know that some of you have wanted a manual, but have been prohibited because of costs. I spoke to the guy there who is willing to help us with shipping the manual at a good price.

It is a great Church Planting Manual, and we are using it to help in planting our New Evening Congregation in February.

UPSHOT: If you want to buy the Manual, let me know by commenting below. You can send me an email if you like too. We haven't figured out costs, but it should be around $A40-45 (more or less). That is with the Shipping. We'll work out that later.

I'll be ordering them on Tuesday. So indicate by then that you wish to purchase.

_________________

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Handle with Prayer

What do you think of this?

It's a new UK Sitcome about an Anglican Clergyman.

_______________

Sunday, November 01, 2009

A Five Year Old discusses Work



We are going on a break for a few weeks. I will continue to post here, but sporadically. York Street is in good hands. Dr Laurel is already in San Francisco at the wedding of her friend Marlene. We will join her tomorrow, and go onto the folk's place in Atlanta.

One of the things I will be doing is having 9 days in London on a Study Leave. I will be looking closely and learning from London City Churches like St Helen's Bishopsgate.

In the meantime, that is one cute kid! 

:)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

US Passport


We are going to take a break in November. I will be posting, but not as often. In the meantime, this is the Little Man and the Little Lady on the way to the US Consulate this morning to pick up his Little US Passport.

When we visit the US Consulate, the Little Man says: "We going to see the Government."

Nice.

For Points:

1. Where taken?
2. What movie?

____________

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Friday, October 16, 2009

Tasker on Christmas - I just ordered 10

Nathan Tasker has just released a Christmas album. I just ordered 10 to give away. And I'll get my church to order 20 to sell on our new bookstall.

Nathan says:
I love Christmas. I love Christmas music. I have always wanted to record some songs that should be listened to at Christmas time, helping us to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas, and preparing our hearts to hear the story of the coming of Jesus.

Admittedly, it felt a little strange singing Christmas songs in July and August! But then again, it was summer time in Nashville, and I am used to Christmas occurring in the summer (back in Sydney), so it was a little familiar too.

I found that reflecting on the Christmas story, months before the Christmas season, allowed me to step back and see the beauty and wonder of the Christmas message. The promise that God would save His people finally comes to pass in the birth of a baby boy, His Son, Jesus. The angels can’t help but sing! The shepherds can’t help but leave their flocks to find Him (the one who would soon call Himself the Good Shepherd)! The wise kings can’t help but bow down before this child King.

God is with us.
Stop. Now. Get out your Credit Card.

And buy them -- 1 for $12. You can buy 5 for $50.

It's a no-brainer.

___________________


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

When did you first join a CULT?

I know it sound serious (cults are evil), but this post is *totally* fluff.

I want to know what cult classic you first followed. (Even if you didn't know it was a cult in the first place.)

I think that my first cult was a TV Show re-run through the 80s called: 'Monkey'. It was a Japanese show, dubbed in English, Kung-Fu fighting, quasi-religious...

It began each show with these words:
In the worlds before Monkey, primal chaos reigned. Heaven sought order. But the phoenix can fly only when its feathers are grown. The four worlds formed again and yet again, as endless aeons wheeled and passed. Time and the pure essences of Heaven, the moisture of the Earth, the powers of the Sun and the Moon all worked upon a certain rock, old as creation. And it became magically fertile. That first egg was named "Thought". Tathagata Buddha, the Father Buddha, said, "With our thoughts, we make the World". Elemental forces caused the egg to hatch. From it then came a stone monkey. The nature of Monkey was irrepressible!
Remember that?

What was your first cult classic: TV Show? Band? Movie?

______________________


Monday, October 12, 2009

Are Youth the Canary in the Coal Mine?

I'm preparing for the TWIST Conference in 2 weeks. Enjoying the prep. So I asked of of my early mentors, David Miles (he was actually my MTS Trainer), for some sermons he has done.

In one of them called 'The Call to Passion', he reflects on many passages of Scripture, not least of which is Philippians 3:10-11. David reflects on suffering, passion, and young peeps:
Young people are theological canaries [in a coal mine]. If they’re keeling over and dropping out. That’s an early warning signal that poison is in the air. The poison of passionless/sold out faith. It means we adults have lost our first love – and so we’ve stopped suffering…
I forget how important David has been in my life.

_______________
Pic by Flickr on Floridapfd.

Friday, October 09, 2009

ACL Links: How do they choose what to link?

Keep reading Dr Laurel's Post on why you need to read the Bible to understand Shakespeare. She is one smart cookie.

In the meantime: I'm right now making sure I'm a paid up and contributing member of the Anglican Church League. I've been back in Sydney a few months, and now its time! I'm looking forward to it. We've got Synod in a few weeks.

But I do have a comment about the ACL external links on their front page -- they have a kind of Blog. But its interesting what they choose to link. I understand why they link all the Anglican stuff -- Bob Duncan, GAFCON, Global South etc.

But it's interesting then that most other links are to US Reformed Baptists -- Dever, Carson, Piper etc. And very little links to our own local guys. I've seen links to Moore Lecturers: Mike Jensen, Andrew Shead, Mark Thompson, Con Campbell. But not a lot from them.

Would love to understand that. Will ask as I get involved.

_____________

_________________

Dr Laurel on Shakespeare and the Bible

In case anyone was wondering if Dr Laurel is a medical doctor, let me lay that to rest. She dissects words, not bodies. She has her PhD in Shakespeare, and we have pics to prove it.

Over at CPX, John Dickson, Greg Clarke and Simon Smart asked her to write on Shakespeare and Christianity. This is her first article, click on this:

'Take Up and Read'—the importance of the Bible in understanding the works of Shakespeare.

It's great -- and worth a read (and maybe even a link to your Blog!)

Here is a taste:
It is one thing to know that Shakespeare knew the Scriptures well; it is quite another to know the Scriptures and understand Shakespeare’s works in light of the references and themes that he uses. I agree with Shakespeare’s friends that we should read Shakespeare, ‘and again and again.’ But, in order to get under the skin of his plays and truly enjoy and understand what we’re reading, it would help us to also read the Scriptures that Shakespeare obviously knew so well. Reading the Scriptures, if only as literature, gives a contemporary reader knowledge shared by Shakespeare and his original audience, a group of people who, like Shakespeare, would have known the Bible and the Anglican Book of Common Prayer if not through their own private reading, then through their mandatory attendance at church services.
Love that Dr.

________________

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

#9 Being Australian (15 minutes around Postcode 2000)

BEING AUSTRALIAN:
Sydneysiders belong to 'multiple, highly-motivated global tribes which exert influence, not control'. Like most Australians, they are passionate about being Aussie, without any substantial understanding of what constitutes the national identity (unlike many Americans). Sydneysiders don’t know Australian history; they only know some Australian stories. Traveling brings out some sort of essential Aussie-ness, and so young people travel often and regularly, with families often holidaying overseas.
This one is my favourite.

________________________
Pic on Flickr audi_insperation.

Monday, October 05, 2009

#8 Morals (15 minutes around Postcode 2000)

MORALS:
Sydneysiders are generous, and younger generation of Sydneysiders are getting more passionate (or at least interested) in issues of justice. They want to serve and they appreciate service. However, there is no overarching moral vision of life, and most determine their own versions of right and wrong, and are quite defensive of their own beliefs and opinions.
Yes?

________________________
Pic on Flickr by psd.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

#7 Family (15 minutes around Postcode 2000)

FAMILY:
Sydneysiders are rarely interested in marriage until around 28. They regularly live together before marriage. And before then, they couldn’t imagine having a baby, but when they do they can’t imagine anything else. (Babies are burdens before marriage and accessories after marriage). As they get older, the men in particular are hurting, and they are sensitive to the possibility that they have not been close enough to their sons and daughters as they imagined they would.
That accessories bit is kind of harsh, but someone said it in our brainstorm session, and I'd be interested to know your thoughts.

__________
Pic of St Philip's on Flickr by Ian.Climacus.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Boba Fett, Bounty Hunting and Yoda

Conversation today in the car about Star Wars:
Daddy, who is 'Boba Fett'?
Me: He's a Bounty Hunter.

Daddy, what is a Bounty Hunter?
Me: A person who chases people for cashola.

Daddy, who is cashola?
Me: Cashola is green, and lots of people like it.

Daddy, so is Yoda cashola?
___________________

Friday, October 02, 2009

#6 Relationships (15 minutes around Postcode 2000)

RELATIONSHIPS:
Sydneysiders pride themselves in community spirit, helping fellow Aussies when in need. They value time to socialise, and they like crowded summer events (e.g. Cricket, NYE, and Australia Day). They have numerous social connections but often few deep friends. They are often sexually active, with the assumption that something is not right if they are not.
No?

_____________________
Pic on Flickr by inail1972.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

#5 Tastes (15 minutes around Postcode 2000)

TASTES:
Sydneysiders love to taste and experience. They like a superior beer and good food, preferring quality over quantity. They love good coffee (and are generally repulsed by the instant variety) and they eat out frequently. They use their eyes, rather than their minds.
No?
__________________

Pic on Flickr by d_web.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

#4 Lifestyle (15 minutes around Postcode 2000)

LIFESTYLE:
Sydneysiders choose pleasure over pain; beauty over ugliness; simple over complicated. They are comfortable and maybe even indulgent. They love the weekends over weekdays, knowing that Sydney is its own heaven. They have unusually good water skills, and they are into personal time, sport, sun, socialising, weather, concerts, movies, and the SMH. They care deeply *where* they live. They are green, but only when convenient.
Yes?

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Pic on Flickr by NSW Ocean Baths.

#3 Money and Career (15 minutes around Postcode 2000)

MONEY AND CAREER:

Sydneysiders are hard-working, straight-talking and even addicted to work. They invest in clothes, fashion, weekends, food and real estate. They identify themselves by their jobs, and this dictates their perceived importance or status in life. But they will often take less money to make life more enjoyable.
True or False?

Discuss.

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Pic on Flickr by Brianapa.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

#2 Education (15 minutes around Postcode 2000)

EDUCATION:
Sydneysiders are highly educated and professional, although not given to self-reflection. They are not driven politically. They are happy to talk about important things briefly, but not deeply.
True or False?

Discuss.

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Pic on Flickr by Convexstyle.

#1 Religion (15 minutes around Postcode 2000)

RELIGION:
Sydneysiders are interested, tolerant and polite about ‘religion’, (having engaged with Scripture in Schools), but skeptical that any one version is the only true version, and rarely motivated to change. They hate confrontation, but are open to Jesus.
Discuss.

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Pic on Flickr by Assaf F.

'Sydneysiders' is code for the people we are trying to reach: People in or near Postcode (Zip) 2000. Again, I stress that this list does not capture everyone (not least of which is the incredible amount of Asian people in our area of Sydney). It is simply meant to ring true of many Sydneysiders. See the original post HERE. And all posts in the Series HERE.

Monday, September 28, 2009

15 minutes around Postcode 2000 (Redeemer's People Profiles)

I learned a *lot* spending a year with Redeemer's Church Planting Center. But one of the things that struck me was the following simple list: The Profile of a Professional Manhattanite.

The list is an attempt to humbly work out (through a process of dialogue, listening and researching) specific and thoughtful people profiles for a professional Manhattanite.

I quote:
From brainstorming with the core croup and in the evangelistic encounter, Tim Keller developed the following profile of the professional Manhattanite:

a) extremely bright-experts; highly proficient in their fields
b) years of counseling, self-analysis; tend to think in psychological terms
c) very sexually active
d) absorbed in their careers--many/most relationships in their job field
e) liberal social conscience
i) commitment-wary (phobic); very private individualistic
g) somewhat lonely; experience numerous transitions
h) highly secular, yet have tried 2 or 3 religions or spirituality-systems
i) deep mistrust of organized religion and especially evangelical Christianity
Our Evening Church Congregation Planning Team have begun to write our own profiles for those we are trying to reach. We don't pretend to represent everyone (as Redeemer's doesn't). The idea is that they pick up the majority of people living withing 15 minutes walk, drive or public transport from Postcode 2000.

I will blog them this week. Two a day. They are based on our collective intuition, as well as some research, but we are happy to have them put through the fires of Blogging, and in our friendships with those who are not Christian.

You can read them HERE.

We've grouped them:
  1. RELIGION
  2. EDUCATION
  3. MONEY AND CAREER
  4. LIFESTYLE
  5. TASTES
  6. RELATIONSHIPS
  7. FAMILY
  8. MORALS
  9. BEING AUSTRALIAN
  10. CHURCH
Keen?

I begin tomorrow.

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Friday, September 25, 2009

Mike Baird to the the NSW Parliament

Mike Baird is a member of the NSW Parliament. He gave THIS SPEECH he last day or two. Nice.

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Thursday, September 24, 2009

MPJ's open letter to Nathan Rees

My friend Mike's Open letter to Nathan Rees made the news.

Nice.

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Thursday, September 17, 2009

Quotes from Today's Inspiring People #2

PLENTY MORE Inspiring People Events to go (and bring your friends)

  • Register HERE.
  • The next events are on Wednesday 23rd of September.
Here are some quotes from Today’s 'Inspiring People' Series (The quotes are not exact, but they are mostly correct):

John Anderson (Former Deputy Prime Minister) on Peter Costello:
"Peter rang [the vehicle help line] to have his car fixed. The woman noticed the name from the registration number and she said to him: 'You poor blighter, it must be absolutely terrible having the name 'Peter Costello'."

Dr Karin Sowada (Former Senator) on Archeology:
"I chose to study archeology because I love to uncover people's lives; their stories."

Dr Chris Hayward (Heart Specialist) on informing patients of their potential death:
"We have to be comfortable with our own deaths first."

Chris Hayward on patient care:
"I've only been in tears once this week."

Chris Hayward on the Age of Death:
"Death is not fair at any age."

John Anderson on Suffering:
After being asked about his personal experience of losing loved ones: "It is really empty and meaningless to make sense of suffering if there is no higher plan, no relief. It's all pointless then, in which case the pain is never ending."

Dr John Dickson (CPX) on Richard Dawkins:
"Very few academics today claim that an 'all-loving' God would necessarily stop suffering. There may be good reasons that we don't know for God to continue suffering. Even Richard Dawkins, (who is not adverse to running light arguments), knows not to run with this one."

John Dickson on God and suffering:
"We may not be able to trace his hand, but we can trust his heart."

John Dickson on doubt:
"You are allowed to come to God with your doubting muscles flexed."

Karin Sowada on John Anderson:
Karen: "John came up to me in parliament and said to me 'how can you be a Christian and in the Democrats'?"
John: "I was just being friendly. :) "

Karen Sowada on being a Christian in Parliament:
"The rubber hit the road when it came to godliness. How do you be godly? It's the same as being a Christian businessman. How do you be honest? How do you face the temptations and still be godly."

John Anderson on Aussie attitudes to politicians:
"I would greet a group of school children and ask them how many of their parents had said to them before they came to Canberra: 'Oh all the politicians are crooks'. And almost all these kid's hands went up. We forget how good we've got it."

John Dickson on Christianity:
People have to allow Christianity to put its best foot forward."

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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Quotes from today's Inspiring People

Here are some quotes from Today’s 'Inspiring People' Series (The quotes may not be exact, but they are mostly correct):

Colin Buchanan on his time Outback:
“The desert does its work on people”

John Dickson on being in 'In the Silence':
“The band didn’t want to be famous and shallow, so we split up and 3 of us when to Bible College.”

Ken Handley on the pressures of being a judge:
“You need to be thick skinned, and I’m well qualified.”

Ken Handley on being on a panel with 3 musicians:
Moderator: “Can you play anything?”
Ken Handley: “I can play the fool”

Colin Buchanan on creativity:
“There are so many cracks in the pavement to fill with all sorts of creative activities.”

Ken Handley on the domestic life of a judge:
“Don’t think for a minute that I win the arguments at home.”

Anne Robinson on the Poor:
“You read the Scriptures, and it’s really between the eyeballs that God cares about the poor and needy.”

Colin Buchanan on Integrity:
“It’s the private moments that define the public moments.”

Colin Buchanan on Jesus:
“He says ‘Follow’ and I said ‘OK’.

Colin Buchanan on parenting an adult:
“My son is 19, and so he’s putting the world together.”

Colin Buchanan on Church:
“I’m at church every Sunday.”

John Dickson on Jesus:
“If the greatest person on the world died on a cross, then greatness must be in being humble.”

John Dickson on Ken Handley:
“I was at this camp, and I’d made a mess of my eggs and bacon, and I handed my plate to a man who got his hands dirty with my mess. And someone said to me: ‘that man is a judge’. It was you, Ken. I could see humility in action.”

Colin Buchanan:
“When Jesus talks about the weak, he is talking about all of us.”

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Register HERE for tomorrow's LUNCH:

The Hon. John Anderson, Toby Hall and Davyd Thomas
Download Invitation and Information HERE
Wed 16th Sept (12.15PM)
Lunch $45 at Hilton Hotel, 288 George St, Sydney

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Friday, September 11, 2009

New Series at York Street: Beyond Myopia

Colossians: Beyond Myopia (Beyond a Small Vision of life.)
  • Beyond Myopia
    (6-Sept) Colossians 1:1-14
  • Beyond Power
    (13-Sept) Colossians 1:15-23
  • Beyond Apathy
    (20-Sept) Colossians 1:24-2:5
  • Beyond Legalism
    (27-Sept) Colossians 2:6-23
  • Beyond Banality
    (4-Oct) Colossians 3:1-11
  • Beyond Anger
    (11-Oct) Colossians 3:12-17
  • Beyond Dysfunction
    (18-Oct) Colossians 3:17-4:1
  • Beyond Fear
    (25-Oct) Colossians 4:2-6
  • Beyond Friendship
    (1-Nov) Colossians 4:7-17
More Information to come...

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Thursday, September 10, 2009

Toby, the Middle Child

My friend and colleague, Toby Neal started a post called The Middle Children of History.

Take a look, and make some comments.

The blog is named for a quote in the movie Fight Club:
We are the middle children of history—no purpose or place. We have no great war, no great depression. Our great war is a spiritual war. Our great depression is our lives. We’ve all been raised on television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires and movie gods and rock stars. But we won’t. We’re slowly learning that fact. And we’re very, very ****** off.
I like how Toby has gone for a quote with Gravitas.

My Blog, on the other hand, is named after a much less substantive quote, from a far less substantive film. Some would say.

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Download Inspiring People Information HERE.

There are lots of events for 'Inspiring People' in Sydney. I'm excited. On the website, you can read the profiles of each of the people, and see what events you can go to.

Thanks to Google pages, you can download and forward invitations to the first two CBD events here:

Colin Buchanan, Anne Robinson, and Ken Handley
Download Invitation and Information HERE
Tues 15th Sept (7.15AM)
Breakfast $30 at Union Club, 25 Bent St, Sydney

The Hon. John Anderson, Toby Hall and Davyd Thomas
Download Invitation and Information HERE
Wed 16th Sept (12.15PM)
Lunch $45 at Hilton Hotel, 288 George St, Sydney

I will be present at both of them, and on the Panel on Wednesday 16th.

Register by clicking HERE.

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Monday, September 07, 2009

Nothing kills joy like sexy or cool

Joy is the New Black.

Of course, You can make anything the ‘New Black’ if you can find a few people to nod while you say it. 

My latest post on the Sydney Anglican site HERE.

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Pic on Flickr by lancelot_milano.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

I do miss Tipping...


I do miss tipping, since leaving the United States.

Find out why.

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

'Inspiring People' for City Workers

What inspires people like Peter Costello, Allison Shreeve, John Anderson, Steve Mortimer and Roger Corbett? How do they tackle life’s challenges and achieve results - from the boardroom to the sports field? This is your opportunity to hear a panel of some of Australia’s most inspiring people discuss their successes and failures, celebrations and difficulties, faith and doubts.

'Inspiring People' is a series of events planned for September and October in Sydney, as part of the strategy to reach the Central Business districts. It is organised by Connect 09, the Anglican Diocese of Sydney, (And JAAL, CBF and CPX). Some things:

1. They are designed to attract outsiders, even those who don't know a Christian - hence we will advertise extensively in the CBD.

2. They will feature high profile Christians in prominent positions, who will tell their life stories, including their testimony, during panel discussions.

3. These discussions will be integrated with an offer to explore the Christian faith through the "Life of Jesus" course using "The Essential Jesus".

Choose from events over five weeks, either before, during or after work in the CBD, North Sydney and Parramatta. Starts Tuesday 15 September.

Of course we expect that many Christian city-workers will make the most of this opportunity to bring friends to a significant event where they can hear from: Commissioner Andrew Scipione (NSW Police Chief), Dr Michael Spence (Vice Chancellor of Sydney Uni), June Dally-Watkins, Professor Graham Clark (inventor Bionic Ear), Brad Mackay (Rugby League International), Lt General David Hurley (Vice-Chief ADF), Professor Alanna Nobbs (Macquarie Uni) and many more inspiring Australians.

What do you need to do?

1. Pray. All are welcome to come and find out more, and pray for the impact of these events. There will also be a special segment at the Connect09 Prayer Day today: Fri 28 August 2009 at Chapter House.

2. Encourage the city workers you know to get involved. We need prayer support, help with promotion and of course, people to invite their friends. All the event details are on the website 'Inspiring People'.

Please promote these events on your blogs, facebook pages, websites, everywhere!
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Pic on Flickr by Shadphotos.

Auckland Churches (Advice please)


Anyone know any good evangelical churches in Auckland?
Good with the Bible and not crazy etc.
Someone from New York would like to know...

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Derek Church Planter

Stephen and Cathy George are good friends from York Street. They put this together: (It's tops)



And I spent years with Mr Woodhouse -- MTS and all that.



Great talent. Love these guys.

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Are Contemporary Songs Trinitarian enough?

I will post a report on our Evening Church Planning soon. But just to say that we visited Church By the Bridge on Sunday at 5PM. It was great to be there, and I'll write some thoughts about it soon -- things I am thankful to God for. Mark Smith gave a great sermon on the Trinity. And it got me thinking lots. Which is good.

We sang a set of four contemporary praise/worship songs at the beginning of the service -- all good etc. But the sermon prompted me to think about the songs: they were all very unitarian, rather than Trinitarian. Lots of 'Praise God' and 'You are Holy', and 'How great is God'. Lots of wonder in God; the stars speak of his majesty etc. They were good. And we loved singing them. But they seemed to lack the depth and power of a Trinitarian faith.

Now, this is just a gut impression. I haven't really checked out whether its true against the lyrics.
  • So is my impression true?
  • Are the classic Hymns more Trinitarian? (besides Be Thou My Vision!)
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Pic on Flickr by Forgiven!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Legacy (William Cowper Thanksgiving Service)

Here at York Street Anglican, we celebrated 200 years since William Cowper arrived at the colony. The Governor came. It was grand.
Will post up my Sermon Download from the Sunday Sermon when our new office manager can figure out the best way to do that!

Worth a read.

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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Is Darth Vader a micromanager?


We watched Star Wars with the kids. Top stuff.

But Dr Laurel observed that Darth Vader was a micromanager.

Discuss..

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Twist Conference for Sydney Musicians



Twist Conference website.

I'm looking forward to it.

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William Cowper Celebrations at York Street Anglican

William Cowper Celebrations on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

William Cowper was Australia's first Parish Clergyman. He was given charge of a parish: St Philip's in Sydney (rather than being a chaplain). 200 years ago next week, he arrived in Australia, and his descendants, along with St Philip's Church, have organised the following events to remember his life and contribution:
  • SUNDAY 16TH AUGUST (10.00AM): Thanksgiving Service at St Philips.
  • MONDAY 17th AUGUST (5.30PM): Book Launch: William Cowper (1778-1858): The Indispensable Parson, by Dr. Peter Bolt will be launched at the Mitchell Library at 5.30 for 6.00 pm. Click here to RSVP. And you can also read about Peter Bolt Publishing.
  • TUESDAY 18TH AUGUST (NOON): Civic Commemorative Service. Preacher: Archbishop Peter Jensen. (In the presence of the Governor of New South Wales.)
You can read it all HERE.

And you can RSVP for any of it, or any questions can be made by clicking HERE.

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Come back, Word Verification, Come back

Almost two years to the day that I killed my Word Verification (Begone, Word Verification, Begone) I'm bringing it back.

Too much spam lately.

I'll see how it goes. Hope it doesn't stop you from commenting.

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Sunday, August 09, 2009

On Richard Johnson

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On Richard Johnson.

Essay by Craig Schwarze, who is writing a biography of Johnson.
4 Essays in anticipation of the Cowper celebrations at St Philip's.

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To an 18th century Englishman, Botany Bay was as hostile, distant and isolated a destination as could be imagined. The convicts imprisoned aboard the ships of the First Fleet were transported by force. For the marines who were guarding them, Botany Bay was an opportunity to further their careers.

But there was one man travelling on the First Fleet who was not compelled, and for whom Botany Bay gave no career advantages at all. His name was Rev. Richard Johnson, and he was the chaplain.

What motivated him to travel to Botany Bay, to Australia?

He was well aware of the difficulties he would face. He wrote:
The idea of leaving my parents, relations, friends, the dangers of the sea, the place to which we were going, to the very ends of the earth, to a country wild and uncultivated, to be exposed to savages, and perhaps to wild beasts... Those ideas so impressed my mind with fear and terror that I almost resolved to decline the offer.
He did not decline the offer. Instead he traveled to Australia, spending 12 difficult years here, struggling with a brutal environment, and preaching to an indifferent audience. Why did he do it? We find the answer in a small tract he wrote to the colonists in 1792. It begins –
I Beseech you, brethren, suffer this word of exhortation. Your souls are precious. They are precious in the sight of God. They are precious to the Lord Jesus Christ. They are precious in my esteem. Oh that you yourselves were equally sensible of their value.

We have now been here almost five years. During this time, I trust, I have been faithful in the discharge of my duty, faithful to my God, my country, my conscience, and to your immortal souls.

I would, nay I do, humbly hope, that my labours have not been wholly in vain. Some of you, I trust, have been convinced of your folly, sin and danger; you have earnestly sought, and happily found mercy with God through a Mediator. You can now approach him as a God reconciled, a merciful Father and Friend, and are evidencing the reality of your conversion, by an upright life and conversation.
We see here both his motivation and his message. His motivation was his belief that the souls of the marines and convicts were "precious in the sight of God". He was motivated by love and concern for their eternal well-being. His message was the gospel - that mercy and reconciliation with God can be found through a Mediator, that is, the man Jesus Christ. This is the same gospel that has been preached down through the centuries, and is still preached by Christ's faithful ministers today.

Johnson gave up everything to preach this message in Australia. It is a great tragedy that his name is largely forgotten today, even amongst Australian Christians. He was the first gospel preacher in our country, a true ministry pioneer. We ought honour his memory, but even more, we should seek to follow his example.

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William Cowper Celebrations:
  • SUNDAY 16TH AUGUST (10.00AM): Thanksgiving Service.
  • MONDAY 17th AUGUST (5.30PM): William Cowper (1778-1858): The Indispensable Parson, by Dr. Peter Bolt will be launched at the Mitchell Library at 5.30 for 6.00 pm. Click here to RSVP.
  • TUESDAY 18TH AUGUST (NOON): Civic Commemorative Service. Preacher: Archbishop Peter Jensen. (In the presence of the Governor of New South Wales.)
RSVP, or any questions can be made by clicking HERE.

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Friday, August 07, 2009

Hello Optusnet Reader....

Someone in Sydney, with Optusnet, has just spent 5 hours reading what appears to be my whole Blog. That's a long time. Email me! Keen to know your interest.

My contact details are in my profile.

Thanks.

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Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Kyle, Jackie O and the smell of hell

My latest post on Sydney Anglicans, for people who don't want to comment there:

Kyle and Jackie O were suspended indefinitely from 2DAY-FM yesterday after last week’s lie detector stunt.

John Birmingham rightly asks on his Brisbane Times Blog:

In what moral universe does interrogating an underage girl about her sexual history, while she’s hooked up to a polygraph and sitting in front of a live microphone, strike anyone as anything other the basest, most grotesque and abusive form of media exploitation imaginable?

There were so many things wrong about the stunt that it is hard to know where to begin. So I read secular articles, opinion pieces, and blog comments from the Australian public to see what they said.

There are at least ten things about the stunt that smells like Hell, even to the public:

1. Placing an underage girl on the radio and interrogating her about her sexual history.
2. Doing this for the purpose of entertaining the public.
3. That her plea “I’m scared ... it’s not fair” was not enough to pull the stunt in the first instance.
4. That a mother brings her daughter to a radio station to ask her about sex and drugs.
5. That lies exist. (Why do we live in a world that has lie detectors?)
6. That this kind of stunt has happened before, and Kyle and Jackie O did not learn from it then.
7. The glib response of Kyle when after the revelation of rape: “Right, is that the only experience you’ve had?”
8. The rape itself (Police are investigating the claims.)
9. That the mother knew about the allegation a month before and still brought her in.
10. That this stunt is like so many other sordid ones that Kyle and Jackie O have done with the lie detector.

But perhaps the greatest smell of hell is what all this says about the listening public. One Blog Comment by ‘Dirk’:

YOU got what you wanted – now what? WE are the ones who endorse a gradual degradation of sensitivities…. This is what we asked for: a constant erosion of moral behaviour by clowns that push the boundaries of ethics. Everyday. … As I said – we elected a pig like him to represent our need for entertainment.

Tough words.

When it’s obvious, sin, injustice and bullying are named. And then shamed. And I’m glad that this is the case on obvious things. Like this stunt.

But Jesus said that this is true of all sin in Matthew 10:26-28:

There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs. Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

May God show mercy.

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Work 4 Hours a day... and be happier

Caroline West, senior lecturer in philosophy at the University of Sydney, defends working 4 hours a day in order to be happy! She says in this Sydney Morning Herald article:
In a lovely little 1932 essay, In Praise of Idleness, he [Bertrand Russell] wrote: "If the ordinary wage-earner worked four hours a day there would be enough for everybody, and no unemployment – assuming a very moderate amount of sensible organisation."

At the time this suggestion met with ridicule, but as the toll of long working hours on individuals, families and communities becomes increasingly apparent, the time for taking Russell’s idea seriously may slowly but surely be arriving.
Lots of other insights there about comparisons, self esteem, treadmills, pride etc.

Thoughts? Could it even be done?

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Pic of Betrand Russell

First Sunday of month: BEG (New PM Congregation)

I can't think of anything better than being linked to a missional church like Christ Church Inner West Anglican Communities, led by my friend Andrew Katay. His post, Missional Moving Out is worth a read.

It is a pleasure to be quoted by him.

York Street Anglican had our first Evening Congregation Planning on Sunday Evening. As we said, we met to beg God to act.

15 peeps squashed into our new lounge area in our new apartment with a view down Jamison St to George St.

We read the Bible (Isaiah 40, Ephesians 3, and Colossians 1); we begged God to act; we talked through some city profiles; proposed our 'song sheet' and went home with homework (an activity about providing a thoughtful and considered profile of the City.)

We filled our apartment with singing to Jesus like:
  • All creatures of our God.
  • Come, Thou Fount.
  • See Him Coming
  • How great is our God
  • O Lord My God
We then walked down to the Cargo Bar on the King St Wharf (Darling Harbour) and had dinner.

Room for plenty more. If you want to join the planning, then...
  • EMAIL me if you think God is leading you.
  • EMAIL me if you simply want updates for your prayers.
  • Send THIS LINK to people who may be interested.
And happy to partner with CCIW in whatever way seems good.

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Pic on Flickr by p.altuna.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Have input into the DNA of a New Congregation...

We are having a meeting this Sunday Evening at 4PM. I write this note for your prayers. Or maybe you want to contact me about being a part of this journey.

At York Street, we have an opportunity: We have a central city space, willing hearts, and an actual key to a large, stunning building not currently being used in the evening. So we seek God’s will in planting a new Evening Congregation: a new community, and a new kind of church reaching a new kind of city. And in partnership with other churches who preach Christ.

We want to truly seek the face of the Lord, and follow his Spirit. Maybe he is not in the project. And we want to find that out. So we are gathering for passionate and fervent prayer this Sunday afternoon. We will be approach God’s throne, asking him what kind of Congregation he wants for a new kind of City. It is Tabula Rasa stuff (Blank Slate). You can read more HERE.

It is rare to be a part of a community in its formation; to have input into its DNA. It will be fun. And we’ll have dinner in the city.

Let me know by emailing me if you are planning on coming. I need to work out how many Redeemer Church Planting Manuals to order.

THE MONTHLY PLAN

BEG (1st Sunday of the month)
We beg God to move and act by his Spirit. We ask him to cause deep repentance. We sing and take joy in Jesus.

PLAN (2nd Sunday of the month)
We argue and eat and discuss the best way forward. Lots of sticky notes and whiteboards. We will work with the Redeemer Presbyterian Planting Manuel.

EVANGELISTIC WORSHIP (3rd Sunday of the month)
Perhaps we go to the Church Building, and do church in a way we pray is good for our friends. Just us. Or maybe our friends join us and help us.

VISITING (4th Sunday of the month)
We visit other churches on this Sunday, looking for the best in them. We will go as a group to other churches, coming back full of joy to share what we learn.
Three ways you can be a part of it:
  • EMAIL me if you think God is leading you to plan with us, and we will talk.
  • EMAIL me if you simply want updates for your prayers, and I will email you.
  • Send THIS LINK to people who may be interested.
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Pic on Flickr by Idle_Type.