Thursday, April 29, 2010
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
"…psychiatry has been transformed from a profession in which we talk to people and help them understand their problems into one in which we diagnose disorders and medicate them."
Alison Pearson below seems to prove the cultural problem:
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1269376/Depressions-curse-generation-Im-struggling-grasp.html#ixzz0mQJbor9H
Monday, April 26, 2010
(H/T Dash House)
Sunday, April 25, 2010
I hadn't misheard.
As todays Rich List shows that there are a few who have a lot. They always have done but they seemingly now have even more.
"The richest people in Britain have seen a record boom in wealth over the past year. Their fortunes have soured 30% even though much of the UK is struggling to recover from recession...." (Sunday Times April 25th 2010)
Urgh? I am confused and just can't be any more because it is making me angry. I am reading Whoops and Injustice. I will let you know what I discover.
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Injustice: Why social inequality persists is certainly a follow up read to the Spirit Level which I have been banging on about to anyone who will listen. Daniel Dorling is a geographer which is a very fine thing to be. Guess what I read a University?
No jokes please
"Is a pastor or a CEO better equipped to lead a growing church?"
As part of this I have been thinking about Vision and some words of John Ortberg were helpful to me.
One reader complained about not being able to comment so I have unblocked the comments (the arrival of Chinese porn with regularity made me turn to moderation so we will see how we go)
We are re-doing our church website. If you have a favourite church website then feel free to post a link to it and tell me what you like about it. One I liked was CCK in Brighton and especially the idea of a testimony on the home page.
A great picture Safe on Daddy's arm and Two essential traits of great leaders
Justin Taylor explores the future of books.
If God wants me happy why am I suffering so much?
McClaren somehow lost his way and here are some thoughts on how it happened.
The work of God in the life of a leader might be a good listen?
I watched this and was left thinking why not get on with it instead of faffing around on you iPad to do list!
Finally, if you like finding new blogs then Adrian Warnock has a selection from his time at New Word Alive that I may look at when I have time.
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
One way to cultivate an understanding of politics is to read more about it. Here are five of the books that got me interested and engaged with politics.
1. One of us: I did my university dissertation on Thatcherism (remember her!) This is a highly readable biography by the brilliant Guardian journalist Hugo Young. It gives an amazing insight into both the woman and her political philosophy.
2. The Alan Clarke Diaries : These are now infamous but Clarke wrote so well and his descriptions of his time working in the cabinet helped me understand what a complex and difficult task we give to politicians
3. All too human: This is a gripping account of the Clinton years that I found hard to put down. This is the West Wing before it became television.
4. Letters to my Grandchildren: Tony Benn is one of the greats of British politics and he is nothing if not consistent. These are a set of letters he wrote to his grandchildren and encapsulate the things he has given his life for and still believes.
5. The Long Walk to Freedom: This is quite simply a book everyone should read at least once in their lives.
Monday, April 19, 2010
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Eugene Peterson, Practice Resurrection, Page 5
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Friday, April 16, 2010
Thursday, April 15, 2010
First a confession. I bunked my Greek class (fortunately no one reads this blog so I should be ok) Anyway, all was not lost after a fantastic start to the day studying 2 Corinthians 4 with Paula Gooder when one Greek word was all I needed. It will keep me going for some time.
This passage is all about keeping going. The word for 'lose heart' in Greek is 'egkakew' which is the word used for the pain a women feels in and prior to child birth. It is the pain that proceeds the joy. The joy a mother feels once the baby is placed in her arms. The pain that was so real at the time but is so quickly forgotten.
So if you are losing heart or are in pain be encouraged. The joy is coming. Joy, such amazing joy. It really really is.
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1. Who are we?
2. What is important to us?
3. Where in the world are we?
4. Where do we want to be?
5. What can we do?
6. How should we do it?
7. When will we do it?
8. Who will do it?
9. How are we doing?
10 Was God pleased?
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
“Three pastoral acts are so basic, so critical, that they determine the shape of everything else. The acts are praying, reading Scripture, and giving spiritual direction. Besides being basic, these three acts are quiet. They do not call attention to themselves and so often are not attended to. In the clamorous world of pastoral work nobody yells at us to engage in these acts. It is possible to do pastoral work to the satisfaction of the people who judge our competence and pay our salaries without being either diligent or skilled in them. Since almost never does anyone notice whether we do these things or not, and only occasionally does someone ask that we do them, these three acts of ministry suffer widespread neglect.’
Eugene Peterson, Working the angles, Page 3
Of all the things I have read, Michael Hyatt's review has been the most thought-provoking and I commend it to you. He thinks the iPad is ...'an elegant solution in search of a problem'
As an aside, I am glad that the Church Mouse is confused and pondering [as I was] about 'Shoe-throwing' and it's implications.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Monday, April 12, 2010
Sunday, April 11, 2010
Thursday, April 08, 2010
Peter Hitchens talks often about 'religion' and very little (unless I missed it) does he speak of Jesus. He loves church buildings and hymns and tradition but aside from his art gallery moment it is not clear how his spiritual encounter has worked itself out in his life. I enjoyed this book for a very particular reason that will most likely be less interesting to you. Hitchens uses as his main argument in favour of God the example of the failed atheism of Russia in the 20th Century. He lived in Moscow for many years , as did I (seemingly at the same time though we never met), so his story-telling on this had great resonance with me.
Sometimes I don't finish books but I did finish this one. I am glad I did too. On the very last page, Peter describes a simple meal he had with his brother in Washington DC. Through this meal he comes at last to a place of peace with his brother and lays down the war he has fought with him for nearly 60 years. Maybe this is the moment I had been seeking for all the way through the book, a Jesus moment. I think I found it and it really moved me.
You can watch the story of the book here .
Wednesday, April 07, 2010
Monday, April 05, 2010
I preached on Joshua 6 and some may have wanted to avoid vs 21. I tried to, but in the end I took it on,
'They devoted the city to the Lord and destroyed with the sword every living thing in it-men and women, young and old, cattle, sheep and donkeys'
It is called 'The fall of Jericho' and you can listen here.
I also commend the sermon by Adam on Ananias and Sapphira called 'No room for falsehood' which you can also find here.
A commitment to preach the whole counsel of Scripture will lead you to difficult but at the same time hugely rich places.
Sunday, April 04, 2010
Saturday, April 03, 2010
Also from today's Times the first reviews of the iPad and a really good one here.
Thursday, April 01, 2010
We are gearing up for some all night praying. If you come at 3am there will be a man playing the guitar rather poorly leading the people of God in worship. I wonder who? It's all guitars to the pumps I'm afraid! A few weeks ago we preached on Acts 4 as we go through the whole book and at the end of the service felt a call upon the intercessors. They came forward- a lot of them. The mark of the Spirit upon them was tears. Lots and lots of tears. So, as a result, tonight these very same people are doing what God has called them to do. Get us all praying and seeking Him.
Here is the story of the 1859 Coleraine Revival in Northern Ireland I mentioned yesterday that may encourage and excite you if you are coming tonight:
"A schoolboy in a class became so troubled about his soul that the school sent him home. An older boy, a Christian, went with him, and before they had gone far, led him to Christ. Returning at once to school, this new convert testified to his teacher, "Oh, I am so happy. I have the Lord Jesus in my heart." These artless words had an astonishing effect; boy after boy rose and silently left the room. Going outside, the teacher found these boys all on their knees, ranged along the wall of the playground. Very soon their silent prayer became bitter cry; it was heard by another class inside and pierced their hearts. They fell on their knees, and their cry for mercy was heard in turn by a girls' class above. In a few moments, the whole school was on their knees. Neighbours and passers by came flocking in, and as the crossed the threshold came under the same convicting power. Every room was filled with men, women and children seeking God"
Raised with Christ [Page 170]