Friday, March 30, 2007

God's Love

To a better world...

From the Micah challenge (check out their website and receive a free weekly prayer directive towards justice - it's great). Jesus demonstrates in John 13, 1-17 his servant attitude that offers a new way of relating to each other and points to a new hope and vision. 'God of hope deliver us all from self-righteousness so that whilst we may call the world towards a different way, we might also, in your name, become the answer to the prayers of the silent, suffering, struggling ones.'

In the new movie Amazing Grace, William Wilberforce answers the question, 'don't you want to make the world better?' to which he answers, 'I would want to make myself better first.' Stephen Court and Olivia Munn in their upcoming book (stay tuned for details) suggest that 'holiness is the solution to every problem'. Although the statement reeks of idealism and niaveness - the real rub of it is this: better people make for a better world. Let's be better and live for something more. For Swtichfoot fans: I Dare You To Move.

Where Is The Love?

The Black Eyed Peas have made a great song from a good question... the picture is from RAW delegates who showed solidarity with the poor and the increasing homeless crowd in Vancouver... demonstrating for justice.
"Where Is The Love?" - maybe we should ask this question more often!

What's wrong with the world, mama
People livin' like they ain't got no mamas
I think the whole world addicted to the drama
Only attracted to things that'll bring you trauma
Overseas, yeah, we try to stop terrorism
But we still got terrorists here livin'
In the USA, the big CIA
The Bloods and The Crips and the KKK
But if you only have love for your own race
Then you only leave space to discriminate
And to discriminate only generates hate
And when you hate then you're bound to get irate, yeah
Madness is what you demonstrate
And that's exactly how anger works and operates
Man, you gotta have love just to set it straight
Take control of your mind and meditate
Let your soul gravitate to the love, y'all, y'all

People killin', people dyin'
Children hurt and you hear them cryin'
Can you practice what you preach
And would you turn the other cheek

Father, Father, Father help us
Send some guidance from above
'Cause people got me, got me questionin'
Where is the love (Love)

Where is the love (The love)
Where is the love (The love)
Where is the love
The love, the love

It just ain't the same, always unchanged
New days are strange, is the world insane
If love and peace is so strong
Why are there pieces of love that don't belong
Nations droppin' bombs
Chemical gasses fillin' lungs of little ones
With ongoin' sufferin' as the youth die young
So ask yourself is the lovin' really gone
So I could ask myself really what is goin' wrong
In this world that we livin' in people keep on givin'
Makin' wrong decisions, only visions of them dividends
Not respectin' each other, deny thy brother
A war is goin' on but the reason's undercover
The truth is kept secret, it's swept under the rug
If you never know truth then you never know love
Where's the love, y'all, come on (I don't know)
Where's the truth, y'all, come on (I don't know)
Where's the love, y'all

People killin', people dyin'
Children hurt and you hear them cryin'
Can you practice what you preach
And would you turn the other cheek

Father, Father, Father help us
Send some guidance from above
'Cause people got me, got me questionin'
Where is the love (Love)

Where is the love (The love)
Where is the love (The love)
Where is the love (The love)
Where is the love (The love)
Where is the love, the love, the love?

I feel the weight of the world on my shoulder
As I'm gettin' older, y'all, people gets colder
Most of us only care about money makin'
Selfishness got us followin' our wrong direction
Wrong information always shown by the media
Negative images is the main criteria
Infecting the young minds faster than bacteria
Kids wanna act like what they see in the cinema
Yo', whatever happened to the values of humanity
Whatever happened to the fairness in equality
Instead of spreading love we're spreading animosity
Lack of understanding, leading lives away from unity
That's the reason why sometimes I'm feelin' under
That's the reason why sometimes I'm feelin' down
There's no wonder why sometimes I'm feelin' under
Gotta keep my faith alive till love is found
Now ask yourself

Where is the love?
Where is the love?
Where is the love?
Where is the love?

Father, Father, Father help us
Send some guidance from above
'Cause people got me, got me questionin'
Where is the love?

Sing wit me y'all:
One world, one world (We only got)
One world, one world (That's all we got)
One world, one world
And something's wrong wit it (Yeah)
Something's wrong wit it (Yeah)
Something's wrong wit the wo-wo-world, yeah
We only got
(One world, one world)
That's all we got
(One world, one world)

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The Vision

THE VISION - Pete Greig

SO this guy comes up to me and says "What's the vision? What's the big idea?" I open my mouth and words come out like this…

The vision?

The vision is JESUS – obsessively, dangerously, undeniably Jesus.

The vision is an army of young people.

You see bones? I see an army. And they are FREE from materialism.

They laugh at 9-5 little prisons.
They could eat caviar on Monday and crusts on Tuesday.
They wouldn't even notice.
They know the meaning of the Matrix, the way the west was won.
They are mobile like the wind, they belong to the nations. They need no passport. People write their addresses in pencil and wonder at their strange existence.
They are free yet they are slaves of the hurting and dirty and dying.
What is the vision?
The vision is holiness that hurts the eyes. It makes children laugh and adults angry. It gave up the game of minimum integrity long ago to reach for the stars. It scorns the good and strains for the best. It is dangerously pure.

Light flickers from every secret motive, every private conversation.
It loves people away from their suicide leaps, their Satan games.
This is an army that will lay down its life for the cause.

A million times a day its soldiers
choose to loose
that they might one day win
the great 'Well done' of faithful sons and daughters.

Such heroes are as radical on Monday morning as Sunday night. They don't need fame from names. Instead they grin quietly upwards and hear the crowds chanting again and again: "COME ON!"

And this is the sound of the underground
The whisper of history in the making
Foundations shaking
Revolutionaries dreaming once again
Mystery is scheming in whispers
Conspiracy is breathing…
This is the sound of the underground

And the army is discipl(in)ed.

Young people who beat their bodies into submission.

Every soldier would take a bullet for his comrade at arms.
The tattoo on their back boasts "for me to live is Christ and to die is gain".

Sacrifice fuels the fire of victory in their upward eyes. Winners. Martyrs. Who can stop them ?
Can hormones hold them back?
Can failure succeed? Can fear scare them or death kill them ?

And the generation prays

like a dying man
with groans beyond talking,
with warrior cries, sulphuric tears and
with great barrow loads of laughter!
Waiting. Watching: 24 – 7 – 365.

Whatever it takes they will give: Breaking the rules. Shaking mediocrity from its cosy little hide. Laying down their rights and their precious little wrongs, laughing at labels, fasting essentials. The advertisers cannot mould them. Hollywood cannot hold them. Peer-pressure is powerless to shake their resolve at late night parties before the cockerel cries.

They are incredibly cool, dangerously attractive inside.

On the outside? They hardly care. They wear clothes like costumes to communicate and celebrate
but never to hide.
Would they surrender their image or their popularity?
They would lay down their very lives - swap seats with the man on death row - guilty as hell. A throne for an electric chair.

With blood and sweat and many tears, with sleepless nights and fruitless days,

they pray as if it all depends on God and live as if it all depends on them.

Their DNA chooses JESUS. (He breathes out, they breathe in.)
Their subconscious sings. They had a blood transfusion with Jesus.
Their words make demons scream in shopping centers.
Don't you hear them coming?
Herald the weirdo's! Summon the losers and the freaks. Here come the frightened and forgotten with fire in their eyes. They walk tall and trees applaud, skyscrapers bow, mountains are dwarfed by these children of another dimension. Their prayers summon the hounds of heaven and invoke the ancient dream of Eden.

And this vision will be. It will come to pass; it will come easily; it will come soon.
How do I know? Because this is the longing of creation itself, the groaning of the Spirit, the very dream of God. My tomorrow is his today. My distant hope is his 3D. And my feeble, whispered, faithless prayer invokes a thunderous, resounding, bone-shaking great 'Amen!' from countless angels, from heroes of the faith, from Christ himself. And he is the original dreamer, the ultimate winner.


Tuesday, March 27, 2007

The Insanity of Choice

Just saw this picture on the facebook group page 'Abortion is Murder'.
Check out again for some ideas on how to join in prayer for LIFE in Canada.
Let justice roll.
Oh, and while you're at it:
1. foster an unwanted child
2. adopt
3. sponsor a child oversees
4. volunteer to babysit for a single mom

just some other ways of being pro-life... any more ideas?

Justice in Canada

Steve beat me to the blog ( but please pray for Donny and the 4mycanada team who are speaking before a Parliamentary committee today (check out their website below). They are advocating to change the age of consent in Canada from 14 (a new low for developed countries) to 16 (at least). Pray. Pray. Pray.... the saints are coming.

Let's move God.

One of my favourite learning curves has been prayer - the non-stop, serious kind... you know, with dancing, singing, art, lying, binoculars (sniper fire), the kind that keeps the neighbours up... let's get to it. "God does nothing except in response to prevailing prayer" (John Wesley).

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Amazing Grace released!

It is finally out in CANADA. This is a must see for all world changers.


So Carla (and Melissa) hooked me up on facebook... it's quite an amazing connecting tool.
Check it out (the url is on the right side of my blog!)
Here's to great friends, good times and a yummy lunch! ;-)
thanks Carla.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

The Revolution Session

The whole session (Charlotte and Vancouver).
The saints are coming... I heard they want a revolution.

Friday, March 23, 2007

reinforcements from heaven...

another great night tonight at Kneedrill... most likely my last (although I keep threatening that!).
Tuesday night Kirsten Ivany was enrolled (as per picture above - with Jonathan and Aaron).
Tonight we transferred in Jenea Gomez... two solid warriors for the battle here.
What a priviledge to have them both on the line. Tara suggested we are going for the Spartan standards. I agree (although we could all work on our abs!).
If all that isn't enough we were able to pray and bless the new leadership of the local front here... Jonathan and Carla Evans and Aaron and Cherie White. If you thought the soldiers were buff - you should spend some time fighting alongside these leaders. Stellar. And speaking of that - maybe you really should.:-)
God is good. Let this shot encourage you:

Thursday, March 22, 2007

The War College


Just finished up at RAW (ready and willing)... what a great event! Thanks to the crew who led the charge (awesome work folks). 120 youth (on their spring break) crammed into a ghetto hall to worship Jesus by dancing on injustice... with their feet and their lives... while their friends were playing video games, these young warriors pushed into the Scriptures, prayer, and acts of mercy... laying their lives down for a few days of serious training for justice.

It was cool. This morning a bunch of us grappled with the idea that we were called to be Spartan like warriors - who were willing to make fighting for justice our whole life... not just a hobby, a job, a duty or a forgotten idea...

Micah gives us the training tools to measure our fitness:
1. walk humbly (agree with God about who you are)
2. love mercy (FEEL the heart of God for you and for others)
3. act justly (re-position your life to be in relationship with the 'other' - the lost, the last, the least)

some great ideas from a great prophet - now, to live the life...

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Nike Sucks (I forgot to mention it...)

My previous post about accountability and my Nike runners lounge was met with a great point:
"Nike factories workers are paid wages insufficient to meet their basic needs, are not allowed to organize independent unions, and often face health and safety hazards. Do they talk about this at the Running Lounge?" I think I'll bring it up!

I know a girl who tried to order a high end Nike sweatshirt (you can do this online and get anything embroidered on it) she ordered one that said, "this was made in a sweatshop". But they wouldn't fill her order! Let's keep thinking... and then just do it already!

Monday, March 19, 2007


So in direct contrast to 300 - check out Shooting Dogs... a film about the 1994 Rwandian genocide.
It is about the Catholic School that was the base for the UN and protected about 2500 Tutsi's from the massacre... that is until the UN was ordered to pull out... the priest of the school chose to stay - when his helper asked why - he said because God was among the suffering... WOW. The teacher left on the last truck. The priest gave his life to save some children - I'd say that was a good way to die. 'Sacrifice is the highest form of love' - the surviving girl says of the death of her priest in exchange for her life - now, to live well is a way to return the love.

The time we have been given is a gift. We should use our lives well to return the great love that Christ showed us when He died in our place. It is like a way of returning love to the Father. Not a bad definition of true worship.
The subtitle of this film asks the question, What would you risk to make a difference? I think that's a good question too.

300 movie discussion guide

Saw the movie 300: "At its most basic, 300 is a retelling of the Battle of Thermopylae, which took place in 480 B.C. Although the particulars are clouded in legend, the facts are not in dispute: an inferior number of Spartan soldiers (generally accepted to be 300) under the command of King Leonidas (Gerard Butler) held out against a vastly superior Persian force (estimated to be anywhere between 200,000 and 2,000,000) led by King Xerxes (Rodrigo Santoro). Although the Spartans did not win the battle, they dealt serious losses to the Persians which contributed to the defeat of Xerxes' forces a year later at the Battle of Plataea."
WARNING: This movie is very violent and explicit. (I don't recommend it for those reasons).
I've always used the Spartans as an example of warriors. When they approached the battle they ran towards the line (see David approaching Goliath) and it struck fear into their enemies - particularly the Persians who were paid to fight.
The potential discussion from this film is great - here's a few questions to get you started:
1. What is the difference between soldiers who are 'free' and those who are paid? Can you see a connect in 'ministry'?
This is a key question in our time in church history. There is a revolution of warriors who are rising as 'free' to fight in the thickest of battles... can you see a connection between the Kingdom and the Spartans?

2. How are Spartans like God's army? How are they different?
I was struck by the extreme realities of this answer in the film. Sometimes the things they would do (in training and battle) were worth emulating - and somethings were the exact opposite of the Christian faith... very interested paradox.

3. What is the significance of the 'hunchback' in the film?
Think about the excluded, the wounded and the hurt. Also, begin to think about how the weak and despised things can be the very things that are used for God's purposes... an interesting trajectory of thought here...

4. Is there any honor in choosing death?
Obviously a quick overview of Fox's book of martyrs will give you Spartan like courage in the heat of eternity... but also a quick read down the list of Muslim Martyrs in waiting - wanting to die by suicide bomb is sobering as well. In a New Testament concept what does a glorious death look?

Sunday, March 18, 2007

More Bono...

Great Preaching again!

Friday, March 16, 2007


Well, this month has mostly been about saying farewell.
The boxes arrived today and I've started the physical packing process. Oh joy oh bliss.
As much as it is a pain it is also a journey of remembering.
I'm not good at that usually. I'm more of an 'in the moment' kind of a girl. Thankfully, I'm able to turn off my emotional valve to avoid awkward public displays (to those of you who can't I'm not trying to rub it in!!).

But, as I'm wrapping, I'm remembering - everything I have to make my home a home is from somewhere and someone.
The $180 cast iron candle holder from a self denial auction (it was a bidding war between Steve and I)...
Candles from friends - their aroma still present in my life.
Photo's from around the world - memories of God's great faithfulness and grace in my life.
Priceless paintings of solid love.
Wedding gifts... still ablaze after (almost) twelve years of bliss. :-)

We had our official farewell last Sunday, so many people were gracious about the memories of our time here in Vancouver.
It truly has been a blessed experience... God has been here and is still. What a gift this place has been to our family. I think we honor one another and the Lord with these words: We will not forget.

It is important to God for us to remember.
It seems that the wisdom of the old is in the memories... lessons learned, battles fought, joys given, pain endured, hardship, sacrifice, love, relationships, fruit, pain... it's all there. In all of the memories in this place - God is the constant. He is present in all things... even the Prophetic lament (Lamentations 3) in the OT finds hope: "I remember my wanderings, the bitterness and the gall - but this I call to mind and therefore I have hope. Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed. For His mercy is new every morning. Great is His faithfulness."

So I remember the constant presence of Jesus in my life. In all things, in all circumstances, in all friendships - He is present.
"I am" says the Lord - and I agree.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Accountability & Nike

So, for some months now I've been frequenting a Nike Runner's Lounge (I found it on my running route).
This is a place for runners to come and try on new nike shoes and gear and then go for runs compliments of nike.
It's meant to target a market group and build 'good will' and a brand allegience...

Although I know it's a marketing ploy - it's been a lot of fun.
One thing I was able to try was the nike+ system. This consists of a chip that fits into your shoe and another little thing that clips on to an ipod... then while you are listening to your tunes, every kilometer a person comes over the headphones and tells me how far I've run and how much further my goal is and what pace I'm running... it's quite amazing.

What I've discovered is this: I run much better with the system. I know it's a ploy, a commercial conspiracy... but the thing of it is this: we all run better with goals and accountability.

Measurable goals, and knowing you are reaching them is a good way to run the race.
It made me start thinking about the measurable goals in my own life and ministry: sometimes in my work people shy away from measurable goals because they think they are anti-relationship. But I disagree. Every relationship can have it's own goals of depth - meaning, accountability, covenant. Indeed, the marriages I admire are ones where the people have worked at being good spouses and bettering their relationship with one another.

Other people I admire make measurable goals with their relationship with Jesus.
I'd like to spend more time with Jesus in prayer. Good intention. Now how to make that a reality?
1. get up 1/2 hour earlier every day to pray.
2. book a war room shift once a week.
3. set up a prayer partner to pray with (and who will ask me if I'm praying - aka keeping my measurable goals).

Without being functionally rigid - I think we could do with more intentional goals.
Imagine the scandal of God using nike to stir me on.

Friday, March 9, 2007

A Meditation for Lent

by the Rev. Roger Bowen

Fast from pessimism; feast on optimism.
Fast from criticism; feast on praise.
Fast from self-pity; feast on joy.
Fast from bitterness; feast on forgiveness.
Fast from idle gossip; feast on purposeful silence.
Fast from jealousy; feast on love.
Fast from discouragement; feast on hope.
Fast from complaining; feast on appreciation.
Fast from selfishness; feast on service.
Fast from Fear; feast on faith.
Fast from anger; feast on patience.
Fast from concern; feast on compassion from others.
Fast from discontent; feast on gratitude

For those of you who haven't considered fasting for lent... try a few of these on for size!
Great Grace.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Bono's Acceptance Speech

you gotta listen to the end... it's one of the better sermon's I've heard...

Monday, March 5, 2007

Holiness is under-rated.

Olivia has been blogging some great reasons for being Holy. Steve Court suggests that holiness is the solution to every problem. (they should write a book about it!)
But, holiness has fallen out of fashion in the last few years, I wonder why?
Some suggest it's the word itself (conjurs up notions of old men yelling about hell and assigning women to domestic servitude) others seem to think it's that we live in Sodom (depth of sexual depravity) - SO, holiness just doesn't seem like a real option. I remember watching my husband give an unashamed, biblical pitch for holiness at a Territorial (national for the army beginner) Youth thingy (not the official name), and I stood amazed as dozens of young people came forward and wept for the blessing.

Afterward I was having a discussion (aka: hearing a lecture) with an adult about the 'dangers of preaching holiness'... and they went over a few. The story went: there are many ways to experience God and maybe we should recognize that and let's not set up young people to fail (blah, blah, blah). But the really sad part is that although there are many ways to experience God - holiness is almost never presented to young people as an option. That kills me. I realized that for many of those youth that day it was the first time someone said to them that holiness was even possible. That is a modern day tragedy. Above all things I want to believe that the God who saves is also the God who keeps.

I don't know why I was amazed at the desire of young people to be holy: Understandably, holiness can often turn quickly into a deep seated religion and hard set of rules, but holiness that is about reckless abandon, holy zeal and unrestrained mission - that's attractive. I call it expansive holiness... inside-out, infectious holiness, or Fullness works for me (thanks to JM for living the dream!).

This whole thing reminds me of the time I coached a high school basketball team. We went on road trips to get some competitive games and when on the road trip (often saturdays) I'd do some preach prep. by asking the girls what they thought of the scripture I was reading. One easter weekend I read the story of Christ's death. The responses of the girls convicted me. They asked why Jesus had to die? Did he rise from the dead? Why would God let that happen? etc...
in other words, it quickly dawned on me that they had never heard the gospel. And this is the rub: I assumed I was dealing with a youth culture that had rejected Christ, when clearly I was dealing with people who had never heard of him. I think the same exact thing may be true about holiness. Let's start an Uprising...

Sunday, March 4, 2007

The War College

Here is a picture of 614 Vancouver's Corps Training Secretary... the trained warrior (mighty man) that will lead the charge of The War College on our front. Have you checked out ( or it's worth a look - you can read all about people around the world whose lives have been changed forever because they took one year to get trained for mission and ruined for the ordinary. This year we are inciting a revolution... next year we are igniting fires everywhere. Don't miss the fight.
I'm quite pumped about it right now, because there are heaps of war college grads visiting these days - and their lives are impressive. They are sold out, mature, keen, willing and ready warriors. None of them are concerned with how much money they make, or what 'position' they hold - all of them are content to find a good fight and get to it... sacrificially laying down their rights, rank and lives for the lost, the last and the least. They have great stature in God's kingdom it's clear. What a privilege to know them and to fight with them for God's Kingdom come. I'm praying for even more... we mean to change the whole world. I hope I can keep up... I think we're getting ready for the horses (see Jeremiah 12:5).

Friday, March 2, 2007

God at kneedrill!

Thursday night is always fun at 614 Vancouver's kneedrill.
In the heat of the hood we meet to fix our eyes on the King and ask Him to usher in the Kingdom.
He does.
Tonight He did it with the crew from Charlotte 614 Firecrest team leading the charge. It was sweeeeeet.
Add the visit of Linwood House (our friends and partners from the beginning), the parents of War College students and the many people from our community (cell mates, phase 2 leaders, adopted warriors, crossculture teens, and outposters) a reunion of some rowdy worshippers and you've got yourself a recipe for a party.
And a party it was. God is love and I love to worship Him. And I love to worship Him WITH my friends.
What a great God we serve.
God let the party expand, continue and overflow into the streets of the downtown eastside! Your Kingdom come.
the picture below is of another night.... but you get the hang of it I'm sure.
I think Kirsten was armed with a camera so stay tune for more fun pics of some serious dancing...

Thursday, March 1, 2007

The New Friars

So, my friend Olivia lent me a book to read on my last trip.
Scott Bessenecker presents a great overview of 'the emerging movement serving the world's poor'.
It's inspiring and I highly recommend it - it actually surprised me that what we are aiming for is so clearly part of a larger movement of God's people on the earth... here's the five essential ingredients he suggests:
1. incarnation
2. devotional
3. communal
4. missional
5. marginal

another 30 day experiment finishes...

So, this is the last day of Feb. and my 30 days in the war room experiment is over. Incidentally, this day just happens to be the 3rd year celebration of non-stop prayer in the Dowtown Eastside of Vancouver. So, my last shift of this month's experiment is the culmination of our time together in prayer and a celebration of God's faithfulness to that end. Cool.

It's amazing how God can make a small room in a slum hotel into a holy place of intercession. Only God could think of this. And, one thing I'm going to miss intensely about this community is The War Room. It's significance can only be under-rated by us on this side of heaven. I'm convinced this habit is a world winning strategy... and I'm already praying for a holy space in another city around the other side of the world to spring up soon...

My next 30 day experiment: MOVING!!