Remember 'Remember the Titans'?
Culture change is tough - but it is worth it!!! I was reminded of this as I watched the movie Remember the Titans. A coach dropped into a chaotic situation must bring culture change for the team to survive... but he doesn't just want it to survive he wants it to succeed, and to dominate. In a way we want our ministries to do likewise so what ideas for culture change can we take from Coach Boon?
Thinking about sacrifice
If Jesus is King, what does that mean for what we want to do with out lives? [Image by Chris Bellerophon Dotson on flickr]
Back to the Mission
Reminded again and again about what we are created for. We are created for worship! But because there are some people who do not worship, we have been given a mission... to go and show people they were created to worship! - photo on Flickr by llamatofu
Appeasement verses Satisfaction
Do we look to appease our emotions, troubles, discomforts with earthy things that may provide some release temporarily, or do we look to God who is the source of complete satisfaction? [Image by donald_palansky_photography on flickr]
Prayer = Dependence
Even in the confidence I have in my own abilities - I am learning that I still need to be dependent on God if the outcome is going to be worthwhile for the Kingdom. Prayer is the key consideration in this! ~photo credit: wiedmaier on flickr
Monday, 31 January 2011
In 2011 City North’s Youth Group is striving to be a Christ Centred, Servant Hearted, Outward Focused Youth Community. If you are in high school make sure you get involved in our Friday night activities.
Come along on the 4th of February to the church at 7.30pm for our Kick Off Night. Meet the leaders, make some friends and play some crazy games. You will also be able to pick up your calendar to find out all the awesome stuff happening throughout the rest of the term.
The youth leading team is committed to effectively ministering to young people so expect to have great times every Friday night, as well as learning more about what it means to be a part of our youth community through the ‘God Spots’ and practically living out of Christ Centred vision together!
Katie's video is simply brilliant. And a must share here on my blog!
Friday, 28 January 2011
Christ is the central figure and the central focus of the Scriptures from Genesis to Revelation. He ought also to be the central figure and the central focus of our lives. To live otherwise and to call oneself a Christian is to be a living contradiction.
John the Baptist said it well, (John 3:30) "He must increase but I must decrease."
He must become increasingly more central in every area of my life, but I must become increasingly more peripheral in every area of my life.
Christ-Centeredness in life causes us to behold the glory of Christ, and in so doing to be changed into His likeness in ever-increasing degrees of glory. (2 Corinthians 3:18)
Christ-Centeredness in marriage enables husbands to love their wives as Christ has loved the church, and enables wives to submit to their husbands as unto the Lord. (Ephesians 5:22-26)
Christ-Centeredness in relationships enables us to love each other as Christ has loved us. (John 13:34)
Christ-Centeredness in the workplace enables us to do everything in the name of the Lord. (Colossians 3:17)
Christ-Centeredness in joy enables us to be completely filled with the very joy of Christ Himself, and in so doing to become increasingly freed from the poisonous pleasures of this world. (John 15:11)
Christ-Centeredness = Unbreakable Joy (Psalm 73:25, 27:4, 1 Peter 1:8-9)
(from Unbreakable Joy)
Wednesday, 26 January 2011
"A flagstaff was erected at Sydney Cove and possession was taken for His Majesty. In the evening the whole of the party that came around in Supply were assembled at the point where they had landed and a Union Jack displayed, I and my officers drank the health of His Majesty and success to the new colony."
Captain Phillip, Saturday, January 26th 1788
Happy Australia Day
Tuesday, 25 January 2011
“I don't leave a lot of things open-ended theologically. I believe there's one God. I believe that Jesus is the only way to heaven. I believe we're all sinners. I believe in a real hell and a real heaven. So I'm a Bible guy, for sure. I don't make any apologies about that.”
|The last toast to a single man|
The ceremony was exceptional. My nephew Nathanael was page boy, and at 16 months was just about the cutest thing you could ever see. He didn't make it down the aisle himself, but with much coaching from Mummy and Uncle Brett he got the rings to the front.
Brett was a mess as Tori came down the aisle. I've never seen him show that much emotion, so it was a special time indeed.
|Signing the register|
Brett's choice of reception location was spectacular. A hotel right on the edge of the Parklands (on Wickham Terrace), the reception hall was on the 10th story with 3 walls of glass to view the entire Brisbane City-scape. As the sun set over the city it was amazing to realise that a lot of it had been under water only a week ago.
|Nathanael with Uncle Brett and Aunt Tori|
The food was great, the speeches were all very touching and the whole day was just about perfect. The bride and groom have now headed to Fiji for their honeymoon and here's hoping that cyclone stays away!!
|Bride and Groom|
|Performing my groomsman duty|
|The sun setting over Brisbane|
|Not a bad view for a reception|
Friday, 21 January 2011
I have to admit it's a tad strange and a little unnerving to be the groomsman at my brother's wedding, when he's 4 years younger than me. Both my siblings will now be married while me, being the oldest, is still single.
It's strange how life works out that way.
Anyhow I am really looking forward to sharing with Brett and Tori on their special day tomorrow.
Wednesday, 19 January 2011
It's very eerie being in a shopping centre that has no bread or milk, as well as very little meat and fruit. The consequences of the Qld floods are impacting everyone, whether directly impacted or through these supply issues.
Monday, 17 January 2011
Every single worm... literally thousands of them... had drowned in the water soaked soil. They'd obviously all tried to come to the surface as the soil was drenched, but because the ground was covered in water they then washed away and drowned.
It was simply incredible to see thousands of earth worms in gutters and up against paths. Nature in all its reality.
On Friday I went out to Chelmer (a suburb right on the south side of the Brisbane River) which had water up to 2m deep inundate the suburb. We helped an older couple clean out there house. We ripped out carpet, threw out dirty furniture and finished off by washing out the house with a high pressure gurney and disinfecting the floors.
I never though I would spent 90 minutes on a water gurney blasting the inside of a house. It was a very surreal feeling. The silt was pretty gross. In fact the smell reminded me very much of the Serekunda Markets in The Gambia, and that was my least favourite smell in all of Africa! Add to that the sound of generators running throughout the suburb and I had a very reminiscent moment about my African experience.
Outside, inside, everywhere was covered in a sticky mud. Only the gurney could move it off the wooden floor after the ruined carpet had been removed.
However in a sense it was a really good day. It felt great to help this couple, and they were amazed at how many people walked into their house to help, and how hard we worked. A team went back on Saturday to help with the cleaning outside - unfortunately I couldn't make it.
The people of Brisbane have been rocked this week, but from what I saw in Chelmer, they will survive and move on. Human spirit is amazing - maybe a little bit of a reflection of our creation in God's image.
More photos of the affected areas at http://www.flickr.com/photos/deanoqld/
Sunday, 16 January 2011
Thursday, 13 January 2011
We had all our problems last week when the rain was actually falling. It seems we only flood when storm-water runs down through the suburb and most of it then comes through our backyard. We dealt with that last week, saving ours and our neighbour's places from being inundated. But with the rain gone this week we've just watched as other suburbs flood due to a rising river.
My family in Ipswich have had a few more troubles. Mum and Dad's house is much higher than any water would ever reach, and we thought that Vanessa and Andy (my sister and brother-in-law)'s place would be the same. However they had to evacuate Tuesday and went to stay with Mum and Dad. They went back Wednesday and prepared the house as it looked like the water would possibly come high enough to get in. Praise God the water only reached their street, and the steepness of their block meant the water didn't reach the house. Unfortunately the houses on the other side of their street were not so lucky.
Mum and Dad's place has been without power since Tuesday. I've just heard they have regained power in the last 20 minutes. Now they are out helping friends and neighbours who have had flooding in their places.
I am now looking at the best way for me to help out with the clean up. It's going to take a long time, with so much mud being left behind as the waters subside. It really is an amazing thing to see the city I live in and love so devastated. The video footage and photos are amazing, but nothing like seeing it in person.
Pray for us in Queensland. God will need to bring peace to a multitude of people, and the church will need to help be the conveyor of that peace!
P.S ~ the photos throughout this post were taken by me at Breakfast Creek yesterday about 12 hours before the flood peaked. The water would have raised another meter and a half.
Tuesday, 11 January 2011
My parents, brother and sister have been cut off in Ipswich - all three of their houses are fine (on high ground) but there's not getting out there to visit them.
We're doing alright in Zillmere. We have problems with running water when it rains heavy, but I think we will be spared any damage from rising water. We're preparing for a few days inside though, and seeing if we can help any people from out churches by providing a dry space to sleep.
Here's a photo from our backyard a few days ago in the worst of what we've seen running through our place.
As far as the Western world would look at the above outline of my life, it would class me as a looser and a failure.
Luckily I can rest on the fact that I am right where God wants me. I'll admit that at times I see what the world would see and I long for some of the things the world would expect me to have by this age. Even some church-folk would judge me on my position in life - I know in Mark Driscoll's view I would not meet his 'definition' of a Godly man as I am not married and living with those responsibilities. Being a Bible College student might save me there, but I still feel that even people at church might think my life is not really the life a 29 year old should be living.
I still stand on the fact I am walking God's path. Hopefully he brings some of those things along in time, but as hard as it is not to fit in, I feel I can take strength from living in God's will.
I had some deep thoughts on my birthday yesterday...