Sunday, April 24, 2005

time to do some listening...

I have always enjoyed the prophetic voice of Rich Mullins.

Only listened to his music and read a little about him, but had always hoped to listen to him live. Wiki has a good collection of information about him. check it out here - link

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Countries I have visited...



create your own visited countries map

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Wise Words

"The church must renounce worldly principles and standards in order to accept the truth, and the way it must go will always lead to some form of martyrdom. It is important for us to realize that we cannot bring about unity by diplomatic maneuvers. The result would be a diplomatic structure based on human principles. Instead, we must open ourselves more and more to God. The unity that He brings about is the only true unity. Anything else is a political construction, and it will be as transitory as all such constructions are. This is the more difficult way, for in political maneuvering, people themselves are active and believe they can achieve something. But we must wait on God, and we must go to meet him by cleansing our hearts." - Pope Benedict XVI.

Johann Christoph Arnold writes a very interesting article about his friendship with Ratzinger over the past 10 years.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

The book of common prayer

Check out this site for the book of common prayer 1662 - link

An invitation to prayer



follow link

Saturday, April 16, 2005

I have got tried of paying £40 per kg!

I have got to that stage of my UK life where I am fed up with paying £40 per kg for Biltong. So I resolved to make some of my own. I bought some meat (still not the cheapest thing in the UK), soaked the strips in vinegar and added some spices. I constructed a drying box from cardboard and an old lamp and here is the evidence...

I will let you know what it tastes like!

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Food for thought via the blogsphere

via Jonny Baker

"We are the fragrance of God in the world, the hint of God, the poetry and prose of God, not the propositions of God. We are the questions not the answer, the aroma not the substance. Let us turn away from the times we have tried to compel others and turn back to the ancient call by which we live beautiful, Christ-like lives in the world."

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

The Emerging Conversation: Unabridged

The complete conversation between Worship Leader and five of the emerging church’s leading thinkers where they voice their thoughts to help explain a new generation of worship.

Check it out here

Want to let blogging make money for you



Check out ProBlogger, as Darren is using his gifts and talents to earn a bit of money.

If I were a South Park Character

http://www.planearium2.de/flash/spstudio.html gives you a chance to create your own South Park character. Here is mine...


I have not named him yet, but am open to suggestions...

Monday, April 11, 2005

Alpha and the Emergent Church

Todd Hunter, president of Alpha USA, was interviewed by Off The Map about Alpha and the emerging church. Here are links to that interview on Todd's site...

Part 1

Part 2

Updated Layout

I was a little bored over the weekend, just sitting around waiting for the new baby. So I decided to revamp the site. I took a while, as I had to get to grips with the various layout elements of blogger, but I am happy with the final product!

Ta

Saturday, April 09, 2005

It's the end of the world as we know it...



One of my favorite songs of all times is “It's the End of the World as We Know It … And I Feel Fine” by R.E.M. I was recently reminded of this song when I heard an old man tell a story about being in church on New Year’s Eve of 1948. He was there, along with the rest of his congregation, praying all day that they would be counted worthy when Christ returned at midnight for His church.

The Pastor had told the congregation “Jesus is coming back at the end of 1948.” This Pastor’s eschatology was “premillennial” and he believed that Jesus was going to return that year because the State of Israel had just come into formation on May 14, 1948, thus fulfilling the last Biblical prophecy necessary for Christ’s return. Obviously, since we are still here, Jesus did not come back on New Year's Eve 1948.

Eschatology is the academic word for the study of “end times.” This might seem funny, trivial, or quaint to some, but it is a big deal to a lot in Christendom. For example, there are over 4,500 books currently for sale on Amazon.com dealing with eschatology. A search for “eschatology” on Google returns 224,000 hits. In addition, the number of sermons preached on this subject every year makes these other numbers look small by comparison. There are three basic eschatological positions: premillennial, amillennial, and postmillennial.

Premillennialists generally believe that there will be a “rapture,” where Jesus comes back to earth and takes His church with Him to the New Jerusalem, where they will reign with Him for a literal thousand-year period, after which Satan will finally be defeated, and they will then spend the rest of eternity in Heaven. Advocates of the pre-mil view usually believe that they can see how far away the rapture is based on a culmination of specific prophetic events in history, which include signs such as natural disasters, wars, mass deception, and apostasy.

Postmillennialists believe that the thousand years is not a literal period of time, but rather is used symbolically to indicate a lengthy finite period instead. During this period, the presence of God's grace through the church gradually overwhelms and minimizes the presence of evil in the world. The predominance of the good culminates and is fulfilled by Christ slowly converting the grace that already exists within His church.

Amillennialists believe, as do the post-mil advocates, that the thousand-year reign is a figurative period. However, unlike the post-mil view, amillennialists do not believe that the thousand years described in Revelation 20 indicates the rule of Christ on earth. Instead, they believe that both good and evil continue to exist in the world until Jesus returns and the final judgment. And that the Kingdom of God is present in the church, but is not progressing towards fulfillment. Christ rules His church, but He does not reign for any specific period in the world before His second coming.

I am sure by now you are wondering why we should care about the different eschatological positions. Well, I believe how people view the end times significantly determines how they deal with life today. For example, I know of several individuals who were caught up in the “Jesus Movement” of the 1970’s, and were so convinced that Jesus was coming back in the next few years that they put their life on hold. They did not attend college or prepare for a career, they did not save for retirement or a house, nor did they invest in helping further the Kingdom of God because it did not matter as Jesus was coming back soon. Today they are broke and unhappy because they were not good stewards of their time, talents, and the life God gave them. I also know of other people today, who have maxed out their credit cards and are paying outrageous interest charges every month. Once again, they don’t see this as irresponsible because Jesus is coming back soon, so what does it matter. The Bible clearly says that we are to live our lives in faith and as good stewards until the day we meet our Lord, whether that be through rapture or death.

What is the correct eschatological position? The short answer is I have no idea. Don’t get me wrong; I have some strong thoughts and opinions on the matter. However, ultimately what I think does not matter, as there is no way to prove eschatologically who is right and who is wrong. The Bible is ambiguous on this issue. I believe it is so, because eschatology is not the main emphasis of how we live out the Christian life.

Our challenge is to not to get caught up in all the arguments over eschatology and dead religion, but focus on a deeper spiritual walk with Christ- doing the things He tells us to do today, regardless of when He returns. Luke 10:27 commands us to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and, love your neighbor as yourself.” That is the true secret of the Christian faith, not obsessing, worrying, or arguing about when Christ will come back.



In the end, we know Jesus is going to come back to earth someday because the Bible tells us so. It does not matter if that event occurs two years from now or 200,000 years from now- there is plenty to do in the meantime. You only need to look around your city, state, country or world to see endless opportunities to share the love of Jesus Christ with a sick and broken society. I have my eyes fixed on serving Jesus today and am not worrying about tomorrow, so as the song goes “It's the end of the world as we know it … and I feel fine.”

[Todd Albertson is a filmmaker and writer living in Los Angeles. He can be contacted through his website: www.toddalbertson.com]


Taken from Relevant magazine

Friday, April 08, 2005

News from SU South Africa

Pastors equipping their churches

"Pastors can wax eloquent all day about 'facilitating', 'mentoring', and 'equipping' the saints. But here is the proof of the pudding: Let that pastor leave his congregation on its own without any stated leaders for six months to a year, and he will quickly learn how well he has equipped the church." - Frank Viola

Thursday, April 07, 2005

why pastors quit the ministry...

"many people have asked me why i am stepping out of pastoring, at least for a while. there has been a great deal of conjecture on my behalf. some think it has a subversive twist to it. others imagine that i am absolutely distraught with life and cannot cope anymore. neither extreme really addresses the central issues i have faced. here are a few of the reasons why some of us tend to fade away"



via link

Emergent churches attract worshippers with alternative religious experiences


via link

When Christians Quit Church

An alarming number of Christians are staying home on Sunday mornings. Charisma researched how this trend is affecting today's church.

via link

Classic Job Advert for a pastor

Emergent Church Seeking Additional Leader

You probably connect with today’s culture if your iPod is part of your wardrobe; if your play lists include U2, Black-Eyed Peas, Moby, and Coldplay; if your library shelf contains N.T. Wright, Leonard Sweet, Bill Easum, Jim Collins, John Grisham and John Steinbeck; if your DVD collection goes beyond Disney to Cohen brothers, Oliver Stone, and Mel Gibson; and if you can successfully order at Starbucks without tripping over your tongue or holding up the line.

xxxx Community Church is seeking a strong teacher/communicator and team player who connects with the inquirer as well as the seasoned Christ-follower and who accurately and passionately exegetes Scripture and culture. This catalytic leader must guide the ongoing theological and cultural dialogue while exploring different approaches to ministry. Five years experience in an emergent church would be ideal as well as a master’s degree and/or seminary training.

Please send resume accompanied with DVD of a RECENT speaking engagement to: xxxx

Sunday, April 03, 2005

in memory

Pope John Paul II

The Vatican said the pope died at 9:37 p.m. on Saturday evening.

Quotes from the around the world about Pope John Paul II:

“We all feel like orphans this evening.” - Vatican’s Undersecretary of State Archbishop Leonardo Sandri

“Quite apart from his role as a spiritual guide to more than a billion men, women and children, he was a tireless advocate of peace, a true pioneer in interfaith dialogue and a strong force for critical self-evaluation by the Church itself.” - U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

“It is the emotion of losing a grandfather, like losing a living stone to which we have clung for so long.” - Monsignor Patrick Jacquin, the rector of Notre Dame.

“Throughout a hard and often difficult life, he stood for social justice and on the side of the oppressed, whether as a young man facing the Nazi occupation in Poland or later in challenging the Communist regime. He never wavered, never flinched, in the struggle for what he thought was good and right.” - British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

“He promoted inter-faith understanding and dialogue, with a willingness to address the past, and a profound determination to build a future of understanding and brotherhood between all faiths.” - Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom.

All news on the pope from the popeblog at http://breakingnewsblog.com/pope/

Is good good enough?

"It is a sin to be good if God has called us to be great." -- Thom Rainer

some thoughts??

Internet Evangelism Day 2005

A focus day for churches, Bible Colleges and other groups, because ... nearly 1 billion people use the Web
... the Internet is changing the world
... God is using the Web to transform lives
... “We’d love to use the Web for outreach, but we don’t know how”

Internet Evangelism Day is here to tell you about …

  • what God is doing on the Web
  • outreach strategies that work online
  • how you, your church or Christian group can use the Web for outreach – and how to make church websites reach into the community
  • planning an Internet Evangelism focus day for your church, Bible college or Christian group; in April, or convenient time later in the year
calendar graphic for Internet Evangelism DayThe date for your calendar ... 24 April 2005



click here for more

A useful resource?

I am not sure how useful this will be, but i might give it a try sometime. Try it out and let me know what you think.

http://hollywoodjesus.com

About me

I am an African living in Scotland. A son, a father, an ex-husband, a boyfriend, a teacher and friend trying to piece together the stories that my God, my parents, my ex-wife, my girlfriend, my pupils and my friends are telling me, so that I can tell my own story. Thanks to all for your support and advice. I still love good coffee and popcorn.

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