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Quoatable Warren

Thursday, October 30, 2008 by Sam

“Only secure people can serve. Insecure people are always worrying about how they appear to others. They fear exposure of their weaknesses and hide beneath layers of protective pride and pretensions. The more insecure you are, the more you will want people to serve you, and the more you will need their approval” 
Rick Warren

Character

Wednesday, October 29, 2008 by Sam


The reason many of us ignore the formation of our character is because it will slow us down. Many ministry leaders want success, a big church, or a crowd. But how many of us want a real life? How many of us want a life in God? We can have that. We can have a character that produces love, peace, patience, kindness…but it will slow us down. It might mean the church won’t grow as big as quickly. It might mean the crowd will get smaller.

But the alternative is both devastating and all too common. The alternative is a ministry of high impact but shallow character. “In the bible it was a miracle when God spoke through an ass. Now it happens everyday.” Translation: God is speaking powerfully through many pastors, but their characters show nothing of God’s life. These leaders, along with their anger, pride, bitterness, and cynicism, are tolerated by many churches because they are able to “fill the room.” Their powerful spiritual gifts, like Samson’s, deflect the flaws of their characters.

Many of us opt to ignore the slow, hard work of character formation because we simply don’t want it. It is a matter of intention. We don’t want to be slowed down in our pursuit of ministry impact and tangible achievement. In order to have a life in God, a life full of his character, we have to want it more than anything else.

What do you want?

Have a great labour weekend!

Saturday, October 25, 2008 by Sam

And if you get the chance sometime, check out this amazing documentary about a group of retired folks singing in a choir together.  It made my eyes leak.  


NT Wright once again

Wednesday, October 22, 2008 by Sam

I am speaking tomorrow night at Blueprint, which is unusually intimidating for a couple of reasons.  Firstly I am following the exceptional Chris Marshall who has just completed a two week series on the Kingdom of God.  An absolutely outstanding couple of weeks.  Secondly I am attempting to explain concisely and clearly some of NT Wrights theology on heaven, resurrection, new creation, kingdom etc.  Which is a big ask for a simpleton like me.  And thirdly its scary because I have a couple of hours to get the guts of the talk ready, and to be honest I am pretty weary after a couple of weeks on the road.
However I am thoroughly enjoying engaging with NT Wrights writing and thought once again.  
For a bit of a taster I would recommend reading this interview which gives an idea of what his book "Suprised by Hope" is all about.  

Manic October

Wednesday, October 15, 2008 by Sam

October was always going to be a fairly crazy month, I am grateful for pacing myself before silly season.  The last week has been fantastic, but very tiring.  Spending time with a whole bunch of great friends, Tash, Stu, some old family friends, the guys from Life Fm, Aaron, as well as meeting a bunch of people from all sorts of different churches over the last couple of days with the Tear Fund guys.  
In the midst of long days, lots of travel and lots of lugging gear around, the ol brain has being ticking over.  Every night I am hearing this guy Grant Norsworthy talk about worship, and there are a couple of things that have got me thinking.  Firstly this idea of paradox that Grant brings up in his talk.  Its something I have spent a long time chewing over in the past, but again I am amazed at how much of my faith sits within this idea of paradox.  I am again making a list of things that kinda sit in the paradox box in my worldview in my little notebook that may work its way into a talk (and guaranteed to work its way into a few conversations).

And secondly, Grant is a prophet - not in the download from God type of way, but in the "you've forgotten the poor, we need to bring some realignment to what it looks like to follow Jesus" more Old Testament style prophet.  And it makes me uncomfortable.  But I like it even though I dont (ohhh paradox).  Sadly I think that prophets arent really welcome in our churches for the most part.  We dont really like people challenging our culture.  And we all think we are experts.  Not the easiest climate for a prophet to rock on up.  But then again, has there ever being a good time?

Whats Happening

Friday, October 03, 2008 by Sam

Things are pretty manic at the moment, its funny how there are seasons where life is really chilled, and then all of a sudden it goes nuts.
This weekend the blueprint staff, and a couple of elder type figures are spending the weekend praying, yarning and discerning the way forward for us as a church next year.  If you have a moment to pray that we would have wisdom in the calls we make, that would be sweet.  

On Monday I move into my new flat... im pretty amped about this.  I have had rocking flatmates this year but the flat we are in is pretty lame, ive being broken into twice this year, the place is a bit of shambles.  My new flat is in breaker bay in Wellington, here are a couple of pics of the view from my new lounge..

Its gona be a good flat for the surfing, the running and the general mental health.  

On Thursday its off up to Auckland to join the Tearfund guys for a tour round the north Island with a guy called Grant Norsworthy to promote the Soul Survivor festival in January.  Dates and locations are here, im really looking forward to catching up with a bunch of mates over that time.  And the on the 18th of Oct we have a "Soul Active" day in the Manawatu, which again should be freaken sweet.  

So as you can see there is a butt load to organise with all this happening, but its all such amazing stuff to be a part of.  

And here is a cartoon that kinda nails where blueprint is at right now : )