Sunday, December 30, 2007

the cow worldview

(hattip rc)
You have 2 cows.
You give one to your neighbour.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and gives you some milk.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and sells you some milk.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and shoots you.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both, shoots one, milks the other, and then throws the milk

You have two cows.
You sell one and buy a bull.
Your herd multiplies, and the economy grows.
You sell them and retire on the income.

You have two giraffes.
The government requires you to take harmonica lessons.

You have two cows.
You sell one, and force the other to produce the milk of four cows.
Later, you hire a consultant to analyse why the cow has dropped dead.

You have two cows.
You sell three of them to your publicly listed company, using letters of
credit opened by your brother-in-law at the bank, then execute a debt/equity
swap with an associated general offer so that you get all four cows back,
with a tax exemption for five cows.
The milk rights of the six cows are transferred via an intermediary to a
Cayman Island Company secretly owned by the majority shareholder who sells
the rights to all seven cows back to your listed company.
The annual report says the company owns eight cows, with an option on one
You sell one cow to buy a new president of the United States, leaving you
with nine cows.
No balance sheet provided with the release.
The public then buys your bull.

You have two cows.
You shred them.

You have two cows.
You go on strike, organise a riot, and block the roads, because you want
three cows.

You have two cows.
You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary cow and
produce twenty times the milk.
You then create a clever cow cartoon image called 'Cowkimon' and market it

You have two cows.
You re-engineer them so they live for 100 years, eat once a month, and milk

You have two cows, but you don't know where they are.
You decide to have lunch.

You have two cows.
You count them and learn you have five cows.
You count them again and learn you have 42 cows.
You count them again and learn you have 2 cows.
You stop counting cows and open another bottle of vodka.

You have 5000 cows. None of them belong to you.
You charge the owners for storing them.

You have two cows.
You have 300 people milking them.
You claim that you have full employment, and high bovine productivity.
You arrest the newsman who reported the real situation.

You have two cows.
You worship them.

You have two cows.
Both are mad.

Everyone thinks you have lots of cows.
You tell them that you have none.
No-one believes you, so they bomb the **** out of you and invade your
You still have no cows, but at least now you are part of a Democracy.

You have two cows.
Business seems pretty good.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Down Under

Well, it's been a great few days over Christmas here in Melbourne. God has certainly shown up and revealed His gracious presence in our lives. Family (online!), friends, extended family - lots of grace and love revealed and celebrated. Good times. I was reading through 2nd Samuel this week - and got to the part where David finally realizes that while he's in a palace, God is in a tent. He speaks to the prophet and says he'd like to correct the imbalance. God politely declines his offer... so nice of him, but after all, God suggests - if He wanted a palace He would live in a Palace... in essence, the earth is His footstool (this is a subtle dawning on both David and me!). Sometimes it's just a good reminder that God doesn't need our help exalting Himself.

Then God gives to David this amazing promise about His family and His heritage being secure in Himself. I loved that. There was something amazingly significant about God's promise to David about His family being 'enthroned' and secure in God's promises with their obedience. And David immediately recognizes it as God's great grace. He doesn't presume the right just because He's king. He says, 'who am I and who is my family that you would do this for us?' - good question. I've been thinking the same thing.

I'm not sure where it is exactly that the presumption of entitlement happens in our Christian walk - but it's a nasty disease. Everything that is good, noble, right, true, whole and rich and free (and I could go on) is God's grace in our lives. I've been thinking about this and wondering out-loud to God - 'who am I and who is our family that you would be so kind?' I know this for sure... I'm so glad to know Him. May Jesus be glorified forever. But for the grace of God go I. My body is no palace - and it may resemble a tent more and more each day - but God dwells in me - WOW!
Ponder that and Be blessed.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

heaven is my home.

So, today I had the privilege of going to 614 Melbourne. For some reason, while I was there I had some emotions about home. I guess the vibe there reminds me of my 'home' ... and for the first time in Australia felt the major pangs of family disconnect. This was a bit sad - but also a good way of identifying albeit a small bit - but more, with those around the place who spend every Christmas without any place to belong. I began to think of the hundreds of families around this neighbourhood (Collingwood) and many like it, who live around the world from their family - without the hope of reconnecting anytime soon.
I've got a whole other kind of family in the Salvation Army - a community doing a great job caring for me and the fam. yet many of those people (other immigrant families) have no other supportive connection. That's a lonely season. I've been praying that God would hook us up with a family of two from this neighbourhood with whom we can share the fullness of God's great gift to us this Christmas. And of course, praying heaps for our own family, around the other side of the world and yet close in our hearts and minds.
And I've been thanking God for His definition of 'family' that widens to encompass the whole world through believing faith in Jesus.
I'm so glad He came. In the end, heaven is our home. I'm longing for that too.
Be blessed.

Friday, December 21, 2007


The spirit of Christmas or "Xcessmas"? (hattip: VC)

If the pressures of Xcessmas (presents, parties and panic) are threatening your Christmas joy throw away your Xcessmas to-do list and try the following to rediscover the spirit of Christmas.

Sit on a bench at the mall and watch for small babies going past. How vunerable and yet how infinitely precious they are. Smile at them and their (probably frazzled ) parents. Know that God has amazing plans for their lives! Pray for them.

Practise random acts of kindness. Hand Christmas cards to strangers. Visit your local old folks home with magazines and a smile. Anonymously send grocery vouchers to friends you know are doing it tougher than you. Drive kindly, let others into traffic.

Find someone sitting alone at the mall. Say "hello" and "how are you?" and then listen. Pray for them.

Many people find the pressures of Xcessmas overwhelming. Remind them about Christmas.

Find a Bible and read about the first Christmas.

Are you afraid?

The shepherds were afraid and yet they came to witness the wonder of God's Love.

Worried about presents?

God doesn't ask for that new microwave or the biggest mp3 player or the newest toy craze.

All He wants is you.

The Kings didnt get Jesus in the local kris kringle. They came to honor and to worship and to adore.

Wait until its dark. Go outside and stand alone under the stars. Gaze up. Let yourself feel very, very small.

Then remember

God Who made the Heavens and the Earth

LOVES you !

And that is all you really need for Christmas.

Monday, December 17, 2007

The Price of Apathy


The price of apathy towards public affairs is to be ruled by evil men.

Friday, December 14, 2007

An Aussie Christmas

If you'd like to join in the celebration:

On the first day of christmas my true love gave to me:
A kookabura in a gum tree...
On the second day....
Two pink galahs...
On the third day...
Three little penguins
Five Kangeroos
Six sharks a swimming
Seven possums playing
Eight flies a feasting
Nince cros a weepong
Ten wombats sleeping
Eleven emus kicking
Twelve devil fighting...
and a kookabura in a gum tree.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Canada Can Do Better

Canada Can Do Better

Check out this site - a great go by Canadian Advocates in the fierce debate raging on whether to legalize prostitution. Some FANTASTIC reading and resources to understand the issues involved in the struggle.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

speak up and live.

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
Martin Luther King Jr.

speak up and live.

Monday, December 10, 2007

John Smith and St. Martins

Had the great joy of being able to walk down the street to St. Martin's Community Church this sunday and join in their 'God Squad' celebrations. It's a fun thing to go to a church where 25 Harley's are parked on the sidewalk outside.
Inside it's filled with bikers who love Jesus and show it by their service to the community.
John Smith (a legend in Aus. and founder of the God Squad movement, St. Martins Community Church and Concern Australia - advocacy group) was on to preach. And what a great preach it was. Using Isaiah and the gospels (John the Baptist and Jesus as the main characters) he wove us a beautiful tapesty of deep, rooted, justice within the Christmas message. Check out Mary's magnificant song to that effect in Luke's gospel... the poor are exalted while the rich go away empty handed - God's economy!
the challenge was a full one... and in case anyone couldn't make the application - here's the classic quote to a prosperity philosophy, "Todays church is not grasping the Kingdom, they are bastardising it." thanks John for the reminder. Open-handed living is the answer for me... I'm prying my hands open daily - God help us!

Friday, December 7, 2007


buy in time for Christmas!

Wilberforce was a 'nutter'

I was given the honour of attending the William Wilberforce awards ceremony the other night where General Eva Burrows was presented an award for 2007 - for living a life in the spirit of William Wilberforce. I agree! What an honour - what a women of God.
To kick off the evening the president of Victoria Bible College, Mike Raiter, presented a short speech on Wilberforce - here's a taste:

"And you simply cannot understand Wilberforce apart from his Evangelical faith.
It’s fascinating reading about Wilberforce against the background of today where there’s so much discussion about religion and politics – so much concern about those who allow their faith to intrude on matters of public policy.
- and the striking thing is that when you read about Wilberforce how little – how very little - things have changed.
- the very same concerns were being echoed in his day.

The vast majority of his contemporaries viewed Evangelicals like Wilberforce and John Newton – with great disdain and suspicion – Enthusiasts – Saints.
Today the insults have changed – now Wilberforce would be tagged a ‘Fundamentalist’ – can there be anyone more injurious to the common good than any kind of fundamentalist?
Tony Blair sparked controversy this week by claiming that while PM he couldn’t speak openly about his deep religious faith because such people are viewed by society as "nutters".
Well, that was Wilberforce – he was a nutter.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

The world has gone mad...

Glad to see Vancouver has it's priorities straight. (ht:sr)
Read the full article but keep in mind THE Vancouver housing crisis and an inner-city that is a blight on the western world - (Canada's poorest postal code where living conditions border on develping world conditions!)...

The characters were designed by the Vancouver and Los Angeles-based Meomi Design. Their characters have been used as part of iGoogle, a customizable homepage option from Google, as well as Electronic Arts, Girls Inc., Time Out Magazine, Cyworld, Nick Jr., Bang-on Clothing, and CBC4Kids.

The Vancouver organizers have a CDN$46-million merchandising program; previous Olympics have made as much as $100 million from mascot-related products.

René Fasel, Chairman of the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) Coordination Commission commented that "The IOC welcomes these imaginative new additions to the Olympic Family as they take their place on the world stage today - a symbol of the Games and of Canada. We know that when Olympians, Paralympians and visitors from around the globe arrive in British Columbia at Games time, they will fall under the spell of these captivating characters."

The characters first appearance will be at a Bay store in the Lower Mainland; HBC is a major sponsor of the Games. They will then make their way to schools, take a break through the Christmas season, and fly to Ottawa for the Winterlude festival.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Kingdom moves...

So the Lord is gracious. That I know.
This last day particularly God has been revealing much to me.
One of the major events in my life right now is trying to finish at one home and move into a new one. It may not seem like rocket science - but it is hard work. And time consuming. So, through this very physical act the Lord has been revealing some spiritual truth (in keeping with his teaching style!).

1. packing up is hard work but necessary. Not just a wipe down but a scrub and even in places you don't see... this is also necessary spiritual work if you want to move somewhere new in the Kingdom.

2. moving in is also hard work - and God is wanting to establish new things... this means we must be adaptable, flexible and willing to put in some hard work! New things are often harder because we have to start at the very beginning (think, utensils and brooms)... but you can make sure that you are doing it correctly and well from the beginning.

There is a cost to moving into the new things of God - but it's one we can count with JOY. For what God is doing promises to be worth the effort.

Hey - there is another cool little thing I was reminded of during our prayer finale (the 2nd 24 hour slot our community has been blessed with) and that's this:
the apartment we are moving into is brand new (built for this occasion) but it's built into a very old foundational building in the neighbourhood. This, we believe, is what God is up to. Building on an old and sure foundation - but doing something new... WOW. We serve a great God.

The Well Is Deep...

Had a deep sense of the Lord's history in Collingwood tonight.
We had the great privilege of having Major Allan Lorenze come to the kick off of our 2nd 24 hour prayer slot in the community. We started at the Penitent Form (or what used to be the Collingwood Sr. Corps mercy seat) - which is a now a patch of grass that we happened to have our last finish of our first 24 hour prayer slot (mostly because it started to rain!)... and the VERY spot Major Allan had his 'calvary experience' many years ago. I knelt with him - what else could I do? What an honour. Then we walked the 'march' route of the early salvationists - pausing at each spot they did open-airs to sing, reflect and pray. Good times.
I was reminded of the time in Gen. when Isaac comes to places and finds wells that are all plugged up (by the Philistines usually) and he unplugs them and recognizes them as his father's well - he reclaims them. That's what I felt like we were up to tonight...even still all through the night our small band of warriors is praying hard for the things God did then (1800 in an average meeting... 150 plus on the march... and need for a 'stretcher sergeant' whose job was to transfer people falling under the weight of God's presence to 'the glory room' so they could have longer times with God!) to do again - in OUR day, in OUR time... Oh God hear our prayer! Tomorrow we 'take some land' quite literally as we move into the neighbourhood.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

How Long Oh Lord?

Not much has changed in the Downtown Eastside

As Pickton jury deliberates, women still going missing from Vancouver stroll

Brian Hutchinson, National Post Published: Friday, November 30, 2007

Check out this story - featuring Jen Allan, an old friend and a strong and confident believer who with God's help defied the odds and became a light in the darkness.
I get inspired by her and pray for her daily.

I wondered again today when God is going to answer all of the prayers for the downtown eastside? I know He is already - Jen is a great example of that and there are more than her... but I cry out with the psalmist, Jenn and the women from the dtes and the martyrs before the Throne - 'how long oh Lord?' and I continue to pray with the believers who still fight on that front. To them I say be fearless and keep your forehead like flint - we are going to win - God is on your side! To Jen I say I'm proud of you and stay close to Jesus. To the countless women who still remain in the clutches of the enemy and in the way of destruction I say you are not alone and pray for your protection and complete freedom. To the city of Vancouver and the country of Canada I say release the funds and programs for affordable housing, protection and exit programs for these women NOW. And to myself, loudest of all - I say - PICK UP YOUR GAME... and fight, fight, fight. These are our people. God hear and answer prayer.