Monthly Archives: October 2009

who has a disability?

I was reading around this morning and discovered the new ‘Social Issues Executive’ website. Terrible name, great website.

I was particularly heartened to see the lastest Briefing paper, entitled ‘Who has a Disability?’ Having had direct and intimate contact with a person with a ‘disability’ and knowing the issues that face someone like that entering into ‘mainstream’ society, I was glad to see some thinking on the issue and some resources being provided for churches to think through their approach to welcoming and including these people.

There are more people with ‘disabilities’ in our community than most people realise. According to the 2003 census, 1 in 5 people in Australia have a disability. Knowing some families of children with disablities, their experience is a hard one, where they have to constantly fight as advocates for information and access. Of all places, the church should be a place where they should not have to fight as hard, if at all.

I highly commend this paper written by Andrew Cameron, and the links that he provides to resources for churches to think through their approach.

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Q & A from James 1

Some good questions were asked via the sms during the sermon last Sunday at 7pm:

When going through trials do you think having wisdom means you will understand God’s master plan?- If you’re not seeing the big picture is that an indication of lack of wisdom?

Referring to James 1:6; I often find myself doubting and asking questions of my faith- How am I to help this? And is it natural to doubt as a growing Christian?

I see wisdom as an individual pursuit, but how can we encourage the foolish among us to seek wisdom, especially when they seem to think they are already mature & even more so when they are also in positions of authority?

Just how does a person ‘do joy’ when they are faced with redundancy or serious medical news?

For my attempt to answer these, check out the St Pauls Staff Blog here.

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who knew?

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world renowned scholar serves up a feast

I had the thrill of hosting Paul Barnett at St Pauls for a breakfast on the book of James.

Read about it here

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how mature christians can keep growing

One of the best ways to keep growing in your walk with Jesus (apart from regular time in the Word) is to be in conversations with others who are walking the same walk. Chatting to others after church, sharing your lives in small groups are vital.

Another method of conversation is reading Christian books. Over the past 2 years, we’ve been running the ‘Digging Deeper Bookclub’ at St Pauls and Glenhaven. Its a chance for a whole bunch of us to grab and read the same book at the same time, and have a conversation about it. One of the side benefits is that we can get books at cheaper than retail prices, and we bring them to you!

The book for term 4 this year is John Ortberg’s, Faith and Doubt. I have chosen it because it ties into some of the themes we will be touching on during the James sermon series, and because Ortberg is a faithful bible teacher & outstanding communicator.

Anyone can join the bookclub, simply by buying a book and giving us your details. We try to run several opportunities per term for people to get together to chat about the book, and we let you know once the term is underway.

Faith and Doubt will be available from this Sunday from the College of Ministry counter at the foyer of St Pauls, for $15.00 (RRP $20). See you there!

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Horror Film Wisdom

Found this…

  1. When it seems that you’ve killed the monster, never check to see if it’s really dead.
  2. If you find that your house is built upon or near a cemetery, was once a church used for black masses, had previous inhabitants who went mad or committed suicide or died in some horrible fashion or who performed necrophilia or satanic practices, move away immediately.
  3. Do not search the basement, especially when the power has just gone out.
  4. If your children speak to you in Latin or any other language which they do not know, or if they speak using a voice other than their own, shoot them at once. It will save you a lot of grief in the long run. Note: it’s unlikely they’ll die easy, so be prepared.
  5. When you have the benefit of numbers, never go alone.
  6. If you’re searching for something which caused a noise and find out that it’s just the cat, leave the room immediately if you value your life.
  7. If you’re running from the monster, you will most likely trip or fall. If you are female you will.
  8. Stay away from certain geographical locations, some of which are listed here: Amityville, Elm Street, Transylvania, Nilbog (God help you if you recognize this one), the Bermuda Triangle, or any small town in Maine, especially if it is called Derry.
  9. If your car runs out of gas at night, do not go to the nearby deserted-looking house to phone for help.
  10. When something bad is chasing you, bear in mind that when you try to start your car, no matter how reliable the vehicle is normally, you’ll have to crank the engine over many times before it will fire up.
  11. People arriving to rescue you generally get ambushed by the monster, so don’t rely on them as your only means of escape. In fact, expect to be surprised and delayed by encountering their flayed corpse at some point.
  12. Do not call the police as they are either evil and will turn you in or will not believe you and laugh at you. Either way, you must handle the problem yourself.
  13. If you are using a gun to combat the all-comsuming evil, it is a good idea to quickly find a new means of defense, because no matter how much ammo you have, you’ll run out just before you kill the monster (unless your name is Ash, in which case, you’ll never have to reload).
  14. If you have defeated the monster, pay close attention to the camera, if it pans away for no apparent reason at all, get the heck out of there.
  15. Skeptics are always proved wrong in some horrible, nasty, painful way. Be a believer.
  16. If you are a child, don’t panic! Monsters only attack overly horny teenagers. Children can NOT be killed in a movie, only possessed or absorbed. So cheer up!
  17. If you’ve beaten the monster into a bloody pulp and you’re sure he must be dead, take the opportunity to dismember, burn, eat, blow up or otherwise utterly destroy him.

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Maker 09 arts festival

Its not too late to enter any sort of art form into the St Pauls arts festival known as ‘Maker 09’ – know your maker, be a maker.

Details here or here.

Edit: lilnks fixed – sorry about that!!

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2 new blogs

I’m now part of a new blog. It is the staff blog of St Paul’s Castle Hill, found here: Come check it out!

The idea is to provide a direct link from all the staff to the people of the church (and beyond), to let them know ‘from the horse’s mouth’ what is going on. You can hear from all members of staff, on everything from what books they are reading, to events that are coming up, to thoughts from personal devtion time, to whatever!

It is an exciting development in the life of the church, I think. I will be reproducing some of the stuff from there here, but this will still be a place where I can muse more personally on things.

Our Senior Minister, John Gray, has also launched a personal blog, with particular musings on the topic of leadership, and regular entries from his personal daily journalling in the Bible. Defintely worth a look.

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wisdom #1

“God is like a pitcher tilted on toward his children, just waiting to pour wisdom over the trial-parched landscape of their lives, if they will but ask.”

Kent Hughes on James 1:5

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