August 17, 2014


I have been giving a lot of thought over the past couple of days to how we as "modern Christians" possibly sabotage, neglect, or abort what God had in mind for us to do because we live in a results/success orientated world, and everything has to be accomplished at such great speed.
He gives us spiritual gifts that enable us to begin or establish something, e.g. prayer house, mercy work, group, community work, a business venture......etc.
As He blesses what He ordained we get excited, ambitious, proud, over-confident with the current success.  The result of this can be franchises as others view the results, invitations to speak and excite and encourage others, even decisions to fund raise to keep it going, forgetting His instructions in Philippians 1:6
"being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus".
Sometimes we have only done the preparatory work in bringing this to birth, get excited about the baby, and forget that it now has to be nurtured and watched over as it grows and learns to walk, talk, become independent!

If God began it HE will carry it forward and ensure that it continues!  We often forget the 'forward' part and camp out at the current point of growth, seeing it as completion.  Instead of using His gifts to continue in the work, quietly obedient and caught in heaven's flow, suddenly we are being carried along by human excitement, demands and values.  We shift off the intended course and purpose and lose sight of, or worse still, lose completely what God intended.  If we franchise what is good but incomplete and intended for us to serve Him in the place He gave us, we have sold off half of a good thing - it's a kind of robbery!

There are always adjustments and changes when a new baby arrives, but the core of the family remains the same just adjusting to the changes in dynamics that expansion dictates.  I wonder how much has been missed or sold short because we got excited at the half way point and didn't continue on making room for more to be added on the way to completion?

Good things, like good wine, take time to mature and deepen in quality.  Can we allow God to continue to use our lives and gifts as He knows He always intended to?
"For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God created in advance for us to do."  Ephesians 2:10

Let's be faithful in the call and gift as long as he wants us there.  Quietly hidden in Him until He leads or calls us elsewhere.  HE is ABLE to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us. Ephesians 3:20
Let's quietly and confidently embrace what is before us today, knowing that He can and will provide all we need, and that all the glory and success is His alone.
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.  Brothers I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it.  But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:12-14

August 10, 2014


At this moment in time, when we are being bombarded with media reports of the latest conflict in this world, it seems that it is all about 'good guys' and 'bad guys' and everyone has to take one side or the other.
My heart is very troubled and sad in the midst of it as I find myself grappling with myself as various friends I esteem highly are coming out strongly on one side or the other, and I find myself trapped in the middle of it all.

It seems that all of human conflict has been about one side trying to prove that they are right, and paying whatever price is necessary to prove that.  So much is justified by taking the moral high ground and endeavouring then to convince others that it is the right ground to be standing on.

I've lived in two countries that were pushing hard for the rights of one side or another, and in both cases it ended with bloodshed.  All around the world today the conflict and the bloodshed continues.  It does my head in trying to find a middle road through all the arguments...a road that leads into the hearts and homes of the ordinary people endeavouring to lead ordinary lives in the midst of it all.

Someone detonated a bomb and blew up an electricity substation near to the hospital right when my son was being born!  At that moment in time I wasn't too concerned with the noise, the shaking, or the reason...I was in the process of bringing forth a new life, someone to be loved and cared for, someone to be raised to be the best possible person he could be.  The message was lost on me in that moment, or perhaps in that moment another message became abundantly clear in my heart.

Wherever we are, whatever we are doing, each of us is doing life.  Life comes with responsibility for those around us, each and every one of them.  I cannot judge, and the Bible tells me it is not my job to do so.  But I am required to live, to love, and one day to give account of how I have done both of those things.

So now we listen to accounts of conflict that lean heavily on one side or the other of 'right', but all the while my heart is telling me that in the midst of it all, and on both sides, ordinary people are endeavouring to live ordinary lives and raise their children to be the best people that they can be.  I cry when I see that children have been killed or maimed, they sure didn't ask for it!  

Now the question comes about those responsible for the killing and maiming - taking into account that there are always two sides firing at each other.  There are two sets of mothers weeping, there are two sets of fathers fighting, there are two sides to every story on the face of the earth, and I doubt that either is 100% guiltless or responsible.

Maybe you and I can begin to change the world not taking sides but by doing the things we can do, day by day.  We can LIVE well, and we can LOVE well.  It might not seem a big thing, but the smallest act of kindness, compassion, and love, flies in the face of the death and destruction elsewhere.

I think someone began a movement like that with the hope that the world might be united and there would be a 'new man' created who was neither one thing or the other, not Jew or Gentile, Greek or Roman, etc., just a new man who could live, love, and represent the One Who is Love Himself to the whole earth.  Maybe He gave us a blueprint for peace and we just haven't implemented it yet!