Category Archives: Mercy

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Australia: What are we doing???

Australia: Where the Government will try and put a sick baby on a plane but won’t do the same for a sick Cardinal.

This blog is inspired by a twitter post I read over the week end.

I’d like to continue the re-working of Bible verse this week with a look at Matthew 25 40 & 45

40 And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these… you did it to me.’
and
45 Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’

What would Jesus say to the idea of the government (working for the people of this country) sending a sick baby, who was born here by the way, to a detention camp? I think he would say something like, “Just as you did it to baby Asha, you did it to me.”

I don’t care what your politics are, which side of the line you sit, if you can tell me it’s right to send a sick baby to a detention camp I don’t think we’re going to agree on our views of Jesus (among other things).

For once this isn’t about Cardinal Pell or the Roman Catholic church.* This is about doing what is right – is it right for the government to try and deport a sick baby and yet not ask a sick Cardinal to come back and answer questions that he has to answer? Is it right that, in our name, the government are denying human rights to one group of people and yet defending (or at least not infringing them) in others? Are we seeing a double standard here? Foreigners are less important than Australians living overseas? Somehow Cardinals are worth more than Refugees?

Jesus never made that distinction. “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these… you did it to me.” 

I, for one, do not wish to stand before God with the deportation of baby Asha (or any of the asylum seekers) on the list of things I have done wrong – that list is long enough without adding to it. 

Australia – we are better than this! Far better. We live in the lucky country not the cruel country. Let’s tell those who have the power to make decisions that some things are just plain wrong and shouldn’t be done – not in our name.

just as you did it to one of the least of these… you did it to me!

* I have been accused of being anti-catholic and that is not true. Let me make it very clear here that I am not anti-catholic. I am anti-cover up; I don’t agree (and that’s putting it mildly) with the way some of the leaders of the Roman Catholic church seem to have covered up the systematic abuse of children in their care. If that is the case then they should have to answer for any crimes (and covering it up is every bit as bad as actually doing it in my book). I think that Cardinal Pell has a duty to answer, in person, the questions from the Royal Commission. I am not making any statement about his guilt or innocence, I don’t know anything about that – under law he is innocent until proven guilty but I think he should front up and not have the relative safety of a video link to hide behind.

If it would encourage him I point him again to Matthew 25 v. 40 and, in light of him not testifying yet, verse 45.

But like I say – this isn’t about him. He will face the Royal Commission and also a far higher judge soon enough.


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death is not the end

One of the ‘stuff’ of life issues  which I’m honoured to be part of is  that of taking part in funeral services..
There is a sense of beginning and ending, as one of my mates i met on the streets of melbourne put it, after saying goodbye to a mate, ‘I’ve come to the conclusion death is a mystery’.
This week I along with a club brother, we  support a family with six daughters age 18>4 as they farewell their dad, their mothers partner.
As we sat with them the second to youngest daughters handed us a letter she wrote, which she would like read out at the funeral
This is the stuff of life where the mysterious ways of God are often the only way to make ‘sense’ of tragedy and loss.
When you’re sad and when you’re lonely
And you haven’t got a friend
Just remember that death is not the end
And all that you held sacred
Falls down and does not mend
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
When you’re standin’ on their crossroads
That you cannot comprehend
Just remember that death is not the end
And all your dreams have vanished
And you don’t know what’s up the bend
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
When the storm clouds gather round you
And heavy rains descend
Just remember that death is not the end
And there’s no one there to comfort you
With a helpin’ hand to lend
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
Oh, the tree of life is growing
Where the spirit never dies
And the bright light of salvation shines
In dark and empty skies
When the cities are on fire
With the burnin’ flesh of men
Just remember that death is not the end
And you search in vain to find
Just one law abiding citizen
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
Songwriters
BOB DYLAN



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there is more to people than ‘looks’.

It is said that beauty is “skin deep”.
It is said ‘Beauty is in the eye of the beholder’.
It is said ‘Man looks on the outward appearance, God looks at the heart?.

A lot is said about ‘image’.

Image it has been said is ‘everything’.

Not sure about you but I reckon ‘reflection’ is more important.

Whose or what ‘image’ do you and i reflect???

Category : #Jesus , Bubba , Clone , Fear , Hope , Mercy


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An arm around my shoulder and a hand over my mouth

We all do it and some of us are far better at it than others. Some do it completely by accident, others are master’s of it and enjoy the feeling it gives; and we have all been on the receiving end of it and it’s rarely pleasant.

It’s that time when you sit and look at the speaker or you think in your head as the words come out, “Keep your mouth shut.”

It’s a real gift to be able to keep your mouth shut when you want to say something and its a gift that very few people seem to have anymore – and I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t have it in the kind of amounts I want or need.

Politicians certainly don’t seem to possess it – a quick google search comes up with some corkers –

I give you Australia’s Minister for Women’s Issues at the time he said this (oh and prime minister too) Mr. Tony Abbott –

“What the housewives of Australia need to understand as they do the ironing is that if they get it done commercially it’s going to go up in price and their own power bills when they switch the iron on are going to go up,”

Now for those who are worried about the impending war with the underwater animals, worry no more – President George W. Bush has reassured us that he

“ know(s) that the human beings and fish can coexist peacefully…”

PHEW!!

Then of course there is the (now ex-) governor of California Mr Schwarzenegger who set us all straight, no matter what we think of the subject – 

“I think gay marriage is something that should be between a man and a woman.” 

But of course it’s not just politicians – Princes have a good track record, one in particular, ladies and gentlemen may I present to you a few pearls from Prince Phillip – 

During a recession he mused: “Everybody was saying we must have more leisure. Now they are complaining they are unemployed.”

“You look like you’re ready for bed!”
To the President of Nigeria, dressed in traditional robes.

To the Aircraft Research Association: “If you travel as much as we do, you appreciate the improvements in aircraft design of less noise and more comfort – provided you don’t travel in something called economy class, which sounds ghastly.”

To the General Dental Council: “Dontopedalogy is the science of opening your mouth and putting your foot in it, which I’ve practised for many years.”


I’m sure there are many others from many different people – me included!


Over the next few blogs (unless something else comes up) I’m going to try and give some old Bible quotes an update. Take Psalm 141v 3 “Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord…” I believe what David is saying here is Lord I pray the you keep your arm around my shoulder and your hand over my mouth. Amen.

So the point is, and I’m writing this for me and letting you all read it (aren’t I nice?), remember the old Chinese internet meme that goes – “You have two ears and one mouth so you can listen twice as much as you talk.”

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BUT FIRST COFFEE

Ok Ive had my coffee now and Im ready!!

After returning from a two week holiday it has been a rude shock getting back into work and the ‘normal’ routine.

Just five days after returning I along with my partner (The Ruth), officiated at a wedding, it was a little over an hours drive, so we decided rather than come home after the practice run we would stay with friends and drink coffee.

It has been 4years since we last spent time with them, so it was a great time of eating and talking, oh and coffee !!

As we chatted about what events both personally and globally had taken place since we last spoke it wasn’t long until wefound ourselves in familiar territory, as we drank coffee.

sorry this is really bad!!

Issues of strained or broken relationships, conflicts in work environments along with confronting family matters, all part of the challenges we face and we deal with the stuff of life, as we drank coffee.

It is so good to have people who are able to share the stuff of life, both difficult and joyful with us, more importantly, having been entrusted with this stuff we need to be trustworthy.


As we face the challenges and joys of 2016, may we in the positions of trust and support, honour and respect this trust, so together we share the journey of life, over coffee.


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IMAGE IS EVERYTHING.

A business in the building next to my office declares ‘Image is everything’, it is also the subject for my ‘sermon’ on Sunday.

Im finding it a tad confronting?

I’ll let you know how it goes.

Meanwhile i may take the advice my 3 year old grandson gave to his mum recently………….

Jed – “Mummy why do you do brush your hair every day? “
Me – “To stop it getting knotty and to make me feel pretty”.
Jed – “but your not pretty”.
Me – “well…. maybe not today, because I’m just in trakkie daks, but when I get dressed up I look pretty, dont I? “

Jed – “um, not really, even then, you should look in the mirror more Mummy”.

Time for a look in the mirror me thinks??

PS: welcome to 2016.


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ten things i hate about Christmas…only ten? I hear you ask!!

1: buying s stuff for people we don’t like and they don’t need

2: the intense loneliness and pain it brings for some

3:pretending its a sacred time but still buying into the craziness

4:the ‘debate’ over Xmas vs Christmas, Satan vs Santa.

5: stupid sayings i.e. he’s the reason for the season, to which I reply, what summer (or Winter if you’re else where)

6: threatening kiddies that Santa won’t come if you’re not good!!

7: wasting food and money

8: there is no number eight!!

9: stupid Church signs including Jesus was born to die??

10: we trot baby Jesus forgetting he grew up!!

Christmas is really
for the children.
Especially for children
who like animals, stables,
stars and babies wrapped
in swaddling clothes.
Then there are wise men,
kings in fine robes,
humble shepherds and a
hint of rich perfume.

Easter is not really
for the children
unless accompanied by
a cream filled egg.
It has whips, blood, nails,
a spear and allegations
of body snatching.
It involves politics, God
and the sins of the world.
It is not good for people
of a nervous disposition.
They would do better to
think on rabbits, chickens
and the first snowdrop
of spring.

Or they’d do better to
wait for a re-run of
Christmas without asking
too many questions about
what Jesus did when he grew up
or whether there’s any connection. 


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life is like a cup of hot chocolate

Its 645 am on an overcast Tuesday morning, people are out, running, riding, exercising or rowing along the yarra river. People every where are rushing to work or  going about their daily business,
not me I’m loitering, with a thermos of hot chocolate blended from several ingredients in my hands.

The homes under the bridge are silent as residents sleep, stirring occasional, unaware of  the activity, seagulls wait impatiently for them to stir as they await the crumbs of their food.

I sit quietly, waiting, watching and contemplating, as the residents continue their slumber.

After some time I leave the thermos and cups at the entry to the home under the bridge and go about the day, wondering who will i meet today, whose story will i hear and what will become of the hot chocolate??


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blessed are the cheese makers!!

Sleeping rough near a building used for Church, because it is the ‘safest place I know’ explained a bloke to me recently as we chatted.
Mean while inside we conversing at our evening service eating cheese and drinking juice.
I took a plate of cheese and crackers out to ‘J’ and invited him to join me for breakfast the next morning. ‘J’ was a no show.

On arriving at my office today, on my desk was a hand written letter from ‘J’, expressing his thanks for the cheese, which really hit the spot, along with an apology for no turning up for breakfast, a contact number for him and a request to ‘do’ breakfast soon.

Im not sure who is meant by the ‘least’, and what we should do or if cheese is even mentioned, but as far as I’m concerned blessed are the cheese makes because they made an impact on ‘J’.

I reckon the kingdom of heaven belongs to ‘J’ and all who share a similar journey.

thanks be to cheese makers!!
Amen


Upcoming Events

Mar
1
Sun
3:00 pm St David’s Day Gymanfa Ganu
St David’s Day Gymanfa Ganu
Mar 1 @ 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm
Guest conductor from Wales National Eisteddfod of Wales blue riband winner / soloist 2 other blue riband winners 5 local Welsh voice choirs Congregational hymn singing Projected 700+ in attendance. Wow….should be wonderful!!!