Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Is that fair?

I read a story about a new apartment building being proposed for anyone over 50 years old.
Apparently you can't be under 50 and live there...
And my first thought was, is that fair?

Someone else proposed a new benefit based on a normal part of life, and one I can't be involved in anymore...
And I wonder, is that right, is that even fair?

Sometimes I tell my kids we are about to do something...
And the anthem is clear and loud, "that's not fair..."

It is like as humans we want something called 'fair'.
Apparently fair means free from bias, dishonesty, or injustice, which is something we all like the sound of. But I have also seen that our own personal subjectivity flavours what we think is fair or not.

So today I have been asking myself if I should be looking for more fairness in my life?
Should I be going out of my way to create a world around me where it is more fair than not fair?
And for me I have come to the realisation that fair is too hard!
No matter what I do, someone will always try and accuse of me of unfairness.
And if I live my live striving for fairness I am probably going frustrate myself or someone else all the time.

So I am replacing fair with another word in my life...
The word is selfless.
Selfless means having little or no concern for oneself, especially with regard to fame, position, money, etc.; unselfish.

Imagine a world where everyone was selfless. Go on!
If we all got to that point, I think we would actually not wonder about fairness.
Selflessness conquers selfishness, which in turns creates fairness.

Jesus is our ultimate example of this...
The Son of God gave up all his rights and privileges in heaven, to take a punishment and death he did not to deserve, for a people who didn't care one bit about him.
That my friends is the ultimate example of selfless! 
And in doing the most selfless act in history, he creates a better world for us.

So do you want to keep looking for what is fair?
Or do want to the change the world and look to be selfless?

Something to think about...



Thursday, January 23, 2014

Capable

I was wondering how fast I could go...
"What am I really capable of?" was a question I was asking myself for many weeks.
Now don't get me wrong here, I am not trying to be some super athlete.
I am doing all this for my own enjoyment and health.
So as I lined up for last nights 5K race series, I had actually had no idea what I was capable of.

A man a looooong time ago faced this question over something far more important.
The people he was leading were in need of one of life's necessities, the need for water.
And we are not talking about a family or a business or even a Church, we are talking about a whole nation.
I think Moses reconciled in his our mind what he was capable of doing.
He remembered a day when they were in a similar situation. Where he struck a rock with his staff and the much needed water flowed. To his thinking, that is is what he is capable of, simply what he has done before...

But God wanted him to do more. To act out of an even greater faith.
To not just whack a rock for water, but in the sight of everyone who mattered to him, to actually speak to it.
The problem was that Moses didn't think he was capable of such a faith act, so went back to what he thought he could do. It worked in the past...so surely it could work again?

The trouble many of us have is that we are restricted by our thinking and our past when determining what we are truly capable of.


Do you truly know what you are capable of?
And how does that compare to what God knows you are capable of?


The challenge is two fold I think...
Basing our capability on what God thinks of us.
And having the faith, courage, guts...to live up to what he knows we are capable of in Him.

Again I will ask you the questions:

Do you truly know what you are capable of?
And how does that compare to what God knows you are capable of?

Something to think about...

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Famous Friends

We have been doing a teaching series called 'Friending' at our Church these last few weeks so I thought it would be a good idea to share something related to this...

While sitting deciding what angle to write from, I did some quick research.
Dived into my 'googler' and searched for Famous Friends.
The result surprised me or maybe it shouldn't have surprised me?
The tops search results were all celebrity based. The 'whose who of cool' in the western world right now or in times recent passed.
I was kind of hoping for people who have influenced history and made the world a better place, to achieve top search results.

Maybe that is the point?
In a world of cool and celebrity, in a world of image control, and a world of pretend...maybe that is why friendship has been so watered down.
Like we have learnt recently, in 25 years the average person has gone from 6 close friends to just 2. But at the same time we are connected via technology even more. More connected yet more lonely.

You and I don't need famous friends.
And we don't need cool friends.
(Just check out how many so called 'famous' ones don't last...)
We need great friends! Friends who can rely on us and us on them.
Friends who will love us in the best and worst of times.
Friends who make us better and not just a means to an end.

Can I encourage to make good choices about the people you class as friends?
The righteous choose their friends carefully... Proverbs 12:26

Jealously guard your best for the best people in your life.
Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces. Matthew 7:6

And go after the ultimate friendship with everything you have, that never will to let that go!
One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24

Something to think about...

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

A Movie called Lincoln


I had been meaning to watch it for a while and on my day off this week I sat down to enjoy a movie called Lincoln.
Basically it retells the last few years of his life, his leading of a nation in civil war, and navigating strategically through his attempts to destroy slavery.

As I sat watching in somewhat of a tired mental state (due to our naughty neighbours partying all night) I found myself really having to concentrate on the dialogue. When was the last time you had to do that watching a movie? But yet this was the case for me...

The script it seems had purposely been written as close as possible to the language and speaking style of that time in history. And it struck me how sophisticated their language was compared to today. 
Even insults had a poetic ring to them. Everything they seemed to say had thought out purpose.
It was though they considered all their words to have vital and valued meaning, and just blurting a thought wasn't nearly good enough. It needed to be considered and delivered as effectively as possible.

This got me thinking about us today and how much it seemed to me our language wasn't the same as them. Was that a good thing or bad thing, or even a thing to be pondered?
Has the quickness of life dumbed our communication down?
Has the invention of 140 characters or less in tweets and text language all conspired against us in some way?
Has sharing an 'opinion' as though it is valuable at the time been really that beneficial for us all?

I think that what this challenged in me could be something we could all be challenged by...
To consider more carefully what we say and how we say it in every area of our lives.
With our family, or friends, or workplaces, those we meet on a street corner or even in a cafe.
Maybe our words should be held in higher value by ourselves and treated as something valuable, amazing and even powerful. Words able to bring good change and even reflect something of God to the world around us?

God's Word talks a lot about how we could and should use our words.
Here are few passages of the many that I am reading, meditating on, and seasoning my life with today...

There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. Proverbs 12:18

Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits. Proverbs 18:21

For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned. Matthew 12:37

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. Psalm 19:14

Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person. Colossians 4:6

Something to think about...

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Cupboard

I was supposed to be on some sort of a holiday break over the Christmas/New Year period...but couldn't help myself!
I realised there was some things I just wanted to deal with before facing a brand new year.
Some things that I didn't want hanging over me.
Some things that I was concerned would potentially hinder me.


You see there is this cupboard in my office.
It is a mystical place where all sorts of things are stored. Actually when we didn't know where to store something, we simply put it in that cupboard. And after 4 years of deliveries to this crazy abyss of mess and function, I couldn't put it off any longer! 
I didn't want to start the new year with this cupboard in the form that it was. Totally messy, unusable and tormenting me as I sat beside each and every day.

So even though I was supposed to not work I decided enough was enough and set to the grand and liberating task of resolving my clutter problem.
Now when I walk into my office it feels ever so much better. Not because you can see my work, but because I know that what was hidden is now resolved and finally in right order.

Over time our lives can be a little like this cupboard.
We accumulate all sorts of things from all manner of experiences.
Sometimes good stuff to savour and enjoy the memory of, along with the not so savoury, the baggage that can feel like it weighing us down...even hindering us.

When Paul wrote a letter to the Hebrews, he said this phrase in the middle of an important statement...
"...let us throw off everything that hinders..."
Why?
Because he understood that to follow Christ there are some things that we carry that won't help.
It is like a cloak you have to throw off otherwise it will slow your running.

Is there anything you need to throw off?
Are there things that are hindering you?
Maybe a habit? A bad relationship? A memory? A hurt?...
If you are reading this and thinking of something you know in your heart is slowing you down in Christ, please be brave and take steps to remove it from your life.

I truly want this year to be outstanding for you. I want that for myself as well...
"...let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,  fixing our eyes on Jesus."

Something to think about...
There was an error in this gadget