Thursday, May 31, 2007

choose life.

Deuteronomy 30:19 (New International Version) This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.

Got some bad news today about a good friend who struggled to choose life, daily. I often wonder why God gave us free will when we use it against ourselves. The tragedy deepens when you know her family history. I'm mad at the devil. I want to break every generational cycle of sin - by choosing life. Could it be that simple? I think so. Just choose life. In every situation...
-when you want to speak 'death' - choose life instead, speak goodness.
-when you desire 'death' by addiction - choose life instead, seek help and community support.
-when you are tempted to give in to 'death' in relationships because they are hard - choose life instead by walking through the storm and finding peace together.
Jesus does not stand off. He is not at a distance. He IS life... choosing life is choosing Him... to be present in everything - to draw near... what's OUR part? simple. choose life. I wish my friend could have choosen it yesterday. God help us choose you today.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Thursday, May 24, 2007

24-7 prayer

so, I'm checking out THQ (territorial headquarters) in New York and have seen the prayer room (soon to be relocated to a more central location) and have been in the office where the plans to keep infusing the army with prayer ignite. It's quite a privilege. I was reminded of another Corps I visited recently who made an announcement that they were going to do an 'old army' celebration the next week. I wondered what that would look like. Turns out two significant things were different that day:
1. uniform (high collars... definately the cooler fashion choice)
2. kneedrill (yep, that's a prayer meeting).

Turns out the way we remember the 'old army' is through prayer. Perhaps that's the secret we've been missing for years. Here we thought it might be the uniform or the band or the programs.... we tell ourselves it could be our outdated mission strategies... and although all of those might have some validity I'm convinced it's just the prayer. We forgot to pray. We forgot how to pray.
In this territory (USA east) they are remembering, teaching and empowering people to pray. Just watch and see what God will do in answer to the earnest cry of his people.

I know all of us can pray without a prayer room. But, I gotta tell you - having been in a place without a specific place to pray for over a month now, it is difficult to fit it in. The rhythms of life drown out our time with God - almost naturally. It takes a determined effort to sustain prayer in our lives... and even more corporately. Let's do more, intentional praying together. be challenged. Start a prayer room - go 24-7 for at least a week... challenge, learn, empower people to petitiion God for their needs and desires... it think we could change the whole world.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Terminator meets Jesus

clear evidence that the gospel is hard to grasp for some people...

Friday, May 18, 2007

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Falwell Dies Trying

Jerry is a controversal figure in the States - and in my world as well.
Some Christians I know think he's the worst thing that happened to America and some love his programs! :-)
I'm not sure what to think:
Jerry Falwell tried to unite Christians to apply pressure to change the political landscape in America.
He used the numbers and influence of the 'moral majority' to lobby government to choose 'Christian' values over secular ones.
He was often controversial and on many occasion said things that made me cringe (and wince at the thought of people thinking he represented Christ)... from gay agendas to anti-semitic sentiments - Jerry didn't hit the mark. The tinky winky thing was over the top... enough to give any true blooded religious freak the giggles... really.

He did try though - and I think his trying was true. Which is to say, that at least he did something. That said, his political strategies confused me. I'm not here to judge the man - I'll leave that to God - but his life got me thinking:
The thing is: can we impose Christian values from without and use force, coercion and threats? And what are the 'christian values' we should be lobbying for? Or do Christian values come with following Jesus... granted Jerry did both (he ran a church, university AND tried to influence government), the questions his life and witness bring up for me are:
1. how do we influence politics without becoming judgemental? (can we offer alternative ways of doing life and community without condemning people who don't choose it?)
2. how do we invite people into the freedom of Christ without sounding religious? (Jesus was constantly hanging out and really liking people who didn't follow God... can we lose the 'insulating' nature of the 'evangelical right'?)
3. how do we inform people to think through policies and government strategies without 'herding' them into a group mentality and telling them what to think? (making critical thinking a priority for Christians instead of conformity?)
4. how do we operate as 'salt and light' in the world - making political differences without blurring the lines of church and state? (and why is that line so important?)
5. how do we decide what points are the ones worth fighting for? Falwell decided on anti-homosexual legislation - but didn't mind tax breaks for the rich.... is that consistent with scripture?? is poverty not a moral issue??

not answers or judgements here people - just questions. It's the questions...

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Vancouver 614's FREEDOM WALL...

Great idea for action on the human trafficking front in your local area... sponsor a FREEDOM WALL... (more info on

Create a Freedom Wall – a fantastic way of publicising STOP THE TRAFFIK and getting people to sign up! The idea is to put the text of the declaration onto a wall, and provide a means for people to add their support. Be creative – there are lots of different ways you could do this!

First, find a wall in a public place – perhaps in your office, your school hall, your college, your church, or in the community. You’ll need permission of course, so contact whoever owns the wall.
Decide when to do it. Choose a time that will have a lot of impact – during a village fete, while a school production is going on. If you want to use a wall outside, it may take a while to get permission from the council so plan ahead.
How permanent can your Freedom Wall be? If you can, use paint so that it will last and lots of people will see it. You may need to give the wall a fresh coat of white paint to make the declaration stand out. If you can’t paint on the wall, use large rolls of paper to cover it.
Put the text of the declaration in the middle of the wall, using paint or marker pens, or by printing it out.
"People trafficking is wrong. I support STOP THE TRAFFIK in its call to: Prevent the sale of people, Prosecute the traffickers, Protect the victims."
Decide how you want people to add their support.
Adults could sign declaration cards and add them to the wall
Children could add handprints in paint
Take photos of the wall so you have a record of it. Send us a copy and we might put it on the website. Have a look at the Freedom Walls that other people have done here.
If you do a paper-based Freedom Wall, you could roll it up and keep it to display at your Freedom Day event.
At the end, collect in the declaration cards and send them to STOP THE TRAFFIK.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Friday, May 11, 2007

FULLNESS - prayer and fasting

There is an event happening this weekend that ROCKS... it is FULLNESS - being held in Vancouver where a bunch of passionate warriors get together to fast and pray. That's right - the wholehearted, fighting of intercession.
If you are anywhere near there - go. The spiritually full Janet Munn will surely lead the charge heavenward. If you aren't near (like me - arrg.) then pray with them (and fast - why not?). Great Grace.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Goo Goo Dolls - let love in

Jason Upton keeps telling people to change the way they pray. We've been praying 'open heaven' but heaven is already open. What we need to pray instead is 'open earth'. Dear God, 'open earth' and let love in.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

What the Heck is Social Justice?

From another helpful article by Rose Marie Berger (The Hungry Spirit: What the Heck is Social Justice?):
"The goal of social charity and social justice is furthering the common good. Social charity addresses the effects of social sin, while social justice addresses the causes of such sins. Brazilian Catholic Archbishop Hélder Câmara famously said, “When I feed the poor, they call me a saint; when I ask why they are poor, they call me a communist.” His phrase indicates the societal pressure to separate charity and justice. The two can not be separated. It would be like taking the heart out of a body—neither would live for long."

When was the last time someone called you a communist? When was the last time anyone was uncomfortable with the questions you ask and the way you live? If we cannot separate charity and justice - what will social justice look like in the context of our current system (the salvation army)?

Thursday, May 3, 2007

The Causes of Incalculable Human Suffering

"An indispensable building block of moral thought is that all human life is equal. The fact that the deaths of Americans and other westerners attract saturation media coverage, while third word deaths typically fail to register on the media radar highlights a fundamental shortcoming of the value-set of much of the western world. The failing is the cause of incalculable human suffering.

It is the reason that much of the third world continues to starve, while over-eating is likely to the number one health problem in the western world by the end of the next decade."

This is from an article called, The Causes of Incalculable Human Suffering by Mirko Bagaric, BA LLB(Hons) LLM PhD (Monash), is a Croatian born Australian based author and lawyer who writes on law and moral and political philosophy. He is the author of 20 books and over 100 refereed scholarly articles. He is not connected with any political party or other interest group.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007


and people say the uniform is out... wow. How can you resist this beauty?

Social Justice...

(hat tip to facebook Rob) ;-)

Two of my favourite saints...

Saint Theresa's prayer:
May today there be peace within. May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith. May you use those gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you. May you be content knowing you are a child of God. Let this presence settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love. It is there for each and every one of us.

special props to TA for the hook up! ;-)