Monday, September 29, 2008

Experiencing the Journey

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People ask me how I am going, and if I am looking forward to Commissioning and other questions of the like.
At present most cadets have assignments their completing, and I've got a good handful left, but am learning much about: the nature of God, who 'I am' in Christ, some historical learnings about the Church in the Reformation Period (1500 - 1600s), and King Henry VIII (16th C) who started a breakaway from the Roman Catholic Church and thus the beginnings of the Anglican Church.

I'm excited to see where some officers are appointed and moved to, as this is communicated in the next couple of weeks.

Last night I heard Tim Costello speak at 'Melbourne Corps 614' and he spoke about:
* The fact that Kevin Rudd attended New York to attend a gathering primarily focusing on Governments fulfilling their role in 'Making Poverty History'. Kevin Rudd promised that he would raise Australia's contribution up to 0.5% of Australia's GDP, by 2015. (The promise was initially 0.7%). America is currently at a lousy 0.1% and President George Bush has not done much to rectify that! Governments can help alleviate world poverty; but will they choose to?
* We have a responsibility to live out our Christian faith by supporting the powerless in our communities; the addicted, the homeless, etc.

So the journey of College is slowly coming to an end, but there are still many exciting experiences within College to be a part of: Agressive Christianity Conference, a silent Retreat, 6 Assignments, A spiritual Day, A Convenant Day, A pancake Day, A special morning tea Day, and lots of other days. Will keep you posted on the journey...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Mindless Survey

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I did a little mindless survey during the TACO Trivia Night at the Training College. There were 10 tables, each with a pen to be used for answering the questions. At the end of the night I collected the ten pens. This is what I found:
* 5 of the pens were in the same condition
* 3 of the pens were without lids
* 2 were chewed to billio.
So next time you're giving out pens, expect 20% to be gnawed like there's no tomorrow.

Jim Scorse said to me recently, '7 days without prayer makes one week (weak)' Nice.

'Don't let your service be dictated by your feelings, but rather let your feelings be dictated by your service'

The word laity comes from the Greek word 'laos' which means, 'people of God'. There was never meant to be a clergy and laity divide. We are all part of the 'laity'. Officers and priests are not more important than other believers in Christ, they just fulfill a different function within the body.

For your information:
* 68 days til Commissioning time
* 75 days til Jo's having a baby

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Generals, High Councils and other tidbits...

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Check out the update on the TACO Trivia Nights: www.taco-trivia.blogspot.com

* We had Commissioner Wesley Harris come and speak to our class today. He spoke about the start of what is called the High Council, which first happened in 1929. The first General of The Salvation Army was William Booth, followed by one of his sons, Bramwell. The issue then arose about how does the Army elect a new General? Well, the High Council was formed, and Edward Higgins became the 3rd General in 1929. He led the Salvos through a stormy time apparently, and this was the first time The Salvation Army was empowered and led by someone outside the 'Booth Family'.

* There's joy in the understanding that a God who created everything, knows you and loves you.

* Aggresive Christianity Conference is happening soon in Melbourne. 1st Oct - 3rd Oct. Come along if you're around.

* Major Mim Adams spoke today about the program called S.A.G.A.L.A. What a facelift this program has had. We no longer work with kids from the stable family unit, with a reliable, caring Mum and Dad and lovely younger sister to play games with. Some families are broken; the Dad comes home drunk, the brother has A.D.D. and the Mum or Dad doesn't always put breaky on the table. S.A.G.A.L.A is really a creative way to engage young people in developing life skills, while finding a relationship with Jesus in amongst it all. It's updated, kids love it, and sometimes whole families find faith in God!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Can I get a Witness on?

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Do you know that the word witness, comes out of the word martyr? Interesting. In Acts 1:8 it says that you will have power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, to be my witnesses...to the ends of the earth. The kind of witnesses that radically live out their faith in Christ no matter the environment; faith or no faith; secular or spiritual; political or humanist. Whatever the world view, whatever the fabic of society holds to, there is a culturally relevant message of Jesus to be shared in every community.

The last two years at the Training College, I've been a part of the Witnesses for Christ session. In fact for the rest of my life, this sessional name will ring in my ears. To me, it conjures up images of connecting with society and the unchurched. I think of sitting around the BBQ with a mate talking of faith issues, discussing the political atmosphere with someone on the train and my Christian's view on those politics. Or, giving a positive repsonse to the Supermarket check-out assistant, or witnessing of the death and resurrection of Jesus at the Men's breaky on Saturday morning.

Witnesses for Jesus in the haunts of sin and shame...
Do some witnessing for Jesus wheresoever you may be...

Friday, September 5, 2008

Sacred and Secular

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In parts of the Church you hear about a divide between the sacred and the secular. Quite often we compartmentalise our Christianity, that is, we put faith in one box, and then we put work in another box, thinking they are seperate.

Here's the thing... We can no longer talk about 'attending church' on a Sunday, as if we are fullfilling our time at 'Church', and then forget about God throughout the week. When someone becomes a follower of Jesus, they offer their whole lives as living sacrifices before God. It doesn't matter if you're praying, shopping or cleaning the toliet, why not offer it as a time to honour God.

Don't look at your work as seperate from your faith. Don't have a 'go to work' and then 'go to church' mindset. Rather have a 'Lord, let my faith be lived out at work and in the church' kind of mindset.

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