Saturday, October 31, 2009

What is a Christian?

According to the World Methodist Council faith-sharing New Testament (sitting in a seminar):

A Christian is a person who believes that the living God is revealed in and through Jesus Christ, who accepts Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, who lives in obedient communion with God through the Holy Spirit and who takes his or place in the community of Christ's church.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Childhood Things

I don't why I thought to think of one of my favourite childhood movies, The Fighting Prince of Donegal. Perhaps it was Rhys' excitement at watching Finding Nemo. But I loved this movie (a Disney movie) and back in those days (the 70's) you didn't rent movies - you waited patiently until the Sunday evening Disney show played it again. I saw it maybe 2 or 3 times but it played out many times in memory in the backyard. I was the fighting prince Hugh O'Donnell liberating the Irish from the oppression of the English.

It's movies like this that cultivated a sense of the romantic in me. I am not a big cry-er. In fact, hardly at all. But if there is something to bring a tear to my eye its moments of achievement against the odds - I will shed a tear watching Olympic medal ceremonies where Kiwis are flying high.

More than that, I sometimes wonder whether it was movies like this with grand themes of freedom, redemption and overcoming the odds that kept alive a spark of what passed for faith in those days. Not faith in anything particular, but faith in transcending the human condition - that there was something more than biological existence. The thought never entered my head because the thoughts in my head were profoundly atheistic. But I can't help but wonder at the sustaining effect of these sorts of dreams.

John 1 describes the world prior to the Word becoming flesh - Jesus:

1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was with God in the beginning. 3Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

The passage goes on to say that the true light was coming into the world, but meantime there was this life that was the light of men. I think of it in these terms: just enough light to see that we need more light. In other words we're not left fumbling in the dark for the light switch. There's just enough light to see the difference true light could make.

I think of films like this and the grand themes they encompass as being part of that light for me.

Friday, October 23, 2009

My Secret Affair

Here she is...beautiful not hot...half the weight of my last one...slender, slim line skin...sensitive touch...mmmmmmmm

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Southland Lift the Shield!

Gotta love the underdogs! Southland grind out a 9-3 win over the Cantabs. Not sure what this means for Auckland now in the wider run to the semifinals. Now we just gotta make sure the Red and Blacks don't win the title! Hawkes Bay to win the rematch?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Rhett's Rugby Rant

Alright, so a first for my blog, a request for a topic! From Rhett the blogless one. He's so dying to talk about Rugby I will post...

First up Chris Rattue is a prize pillock. Today's article saying he will cheer the opposition in Wales on the AB tour is crazy and unpatriotic. There's a big difference between expressing a point of view about coaches and tactics and selections and turning your back on the national side. Go dropkick yourself Chris.

Moving to the most interesting part of the selection announcement, the coach reshuffle. This is how I see it:

  • Its a demotion for Hansen - Henry, the only coach who has actually succeeded in his specialist area of defence, moves into the trouble area of the lineouts - already his media offensive has been highly effective - lets hope his coaching is as good;

  • Its a demotion for Smith - he loses the backs and gets defence instead - now Smithie just work the old axiom "if it ain't broke don't fix it". The problem with Smith is he is full of great ideas but is a crap coach. Remember the flat backline anyone? I can see it now: "We are working on a new defensive strategy. Basically we are turning our backs on the opposition so that we are ready for pop kicks over the top and in a better position to chase opposition players who breach our first line of defence...we're calling it the back flatline....";

  • The only curious piece in this is Hansen getting the backs. Now the first point in his favour is that he was a back, despite his porcine tendencies towards front row physique. And he was coach of a successful Crusaders unit back in the day, who were masters of the counterattack. Of course if it doesn't work we can all just flush the dunny and move on...

As for the players? Kind of predictable in most areas:

  • Sad but expected move on Ross - lets hope he can still run when he comes out of the gym

  • A pleasant surprise on Messam

  • A shock on Delaney when everyone was picking the Manawatu lad, but the distinguishing features of age and a decent kicking game are revealing...

  • A big surprise with De Malmanche omitted. I'm picking this is Henry's first foray into "owning" the forwards - if I'm going to coach the lineout you better believe I am not going to pick someone who can't throw the ball in...

  • Ben Smith was the selectors way of making sure NO ONE got the full team right...lets hope its not another roll of the dice aka Wulf, Gear, Tuitavake etc

  • Guildford is rewarded for solid form and he has in Kirtonese language - "gas" - there's a novelty in recent AB sides a winger with pace...

Thats all from me - have at it Mr Snell! Or we could meet for coffee and gasbag about it all :)

Oh and while I am now officially being solicted for blog posts would anyone like me to blog about the politicisation of the family unit and a critique of aspects of rights theory especially as applied to women?

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Jesus the Word - a word so pure, so powerful, so perfect, that to speak it would be as if every word ever written, every word ever spoken, every thought conceived was but a stillborn whisper. A word so far reaching that to utter it could change everything – the past, the present, the future. A word so true, so right, that to speak it would bring something out of nothing. Now imagine that word taking for its meaning a new definition – one phrased in human flesh. A medium at once limiting in its constraints but richly expressive in the nuances it could bring to its human readership.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Super Pastor?

So a little back story - the Auckland metropolitan area is made up of a number of cities each with their own infrastructure - the plan is to combine them into a super city. Now a certain high profile pastor decided that the super city needed a super church so a bill board was made...

And now cessioncommunity's youth pastor has made this...

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

What the Hell?

Two interesting thoughts:

"Let me sum up my thoughts: Hell is a freely-chosen identity based on something else other than God that goes on forever. But even while you disintegrate, you refuse to admit what hell is. You think that it is God who cast you in hell, but it is a self-chosen identity. There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, "Thy will be done," and those to whom God says in the end, "Thy will be done." All that are in hell choose it. Without that self choice, it wouldn't be hell."

"...this reality, this forgiveness, this reconciliation, is true for everybody. Paul insisted that when Jesus died on the cross, he was reconciling ‘all things, in heaven and on earth, to God.’ All things, everywhere. This reality then isn’t something that we make true about ourselves by doing something. It is already true. Our choice is to live in this new reality or cling to a reality of our own making."

Monday, October 12, 2009

I Am Feeling Olympic

So Rugby Sevens is an Olympic sport eh? But its not the first time Rugby has been played at the Olympics. Without googling it, who is the reigning Olympic Rugby Gold Medallist?

I'm not sure Netballs answer to Sevens and 20-20 Cricket will survive but glad we beat the Aussies!

Tuesday, October 06, 2009


So we have this opportunity for people to identify with cessioncommunity as partners and as part of that we invite people to enter into a covenant with us. I recently received the following slightly reworded covenant from a new recruit - I'll leave you to work out which bits were added:

Partnership Covenant/Contract/Soul-selling

I,………………………… wish to covenant with the cult of cessioncommunity as together we reach for our vision of flying away on our purple spacecraft to greater glory and
life encountering truth as we reflect and offer Christ

I will align my efforts with the Mission of the cessioncommunity by seeking to become a growing follower of Christ who grows followers of Christ. To do this I will join the community in:

• Connecting our lives to God and drawing others into that connection
- Through regular attendance of the worship gathering
- Spending quality relationship time with God
- Being a 'fool' for Christ

• Living life together in authentic community (commune)

Through attending a cell group at the movies or pub
Committing to "open" relationships with people - sounds like my kind of church!

• Impacting our neighbours with love

Living out God’s command to love my neighbour
Being a part of our corporate community influence events
Phoning noise control wherever possible
Getting drunk and trying to get others to do likewise

• Reflecting and offering Jesus Christ to others

Sharing Jesus with those I’m connected to - scratch that: I don't share
Being a part of what we do together to reach others and inviting friends and family where I can

• Pursuing and encouraging life transformation

Taking time to learn and apply more of the bible* to my life
Bringing all that I am and have to God from time and talents to financial and other resources - do you have change for a button?

* The "Bible" being Fashion Quarterly

Well it made me laugh!

Saturday, October 03, 2009


So someone sent me an email following Sunday's sermon. It was a gentle correction on something I had said:

"First, i wasn't going to say anything until i double checked, but i was pretty sure you were claiming to make up a word that i had heard...awhile back..."

Whoops! Busted!

But the truth of it was: I really had no idea the word my conclusion was:

"Wow! That’s so cool. Yes I did claim to make it up – actually I DID make it up – its just someone else made it up first – which makes me even cooler: I made up A REAL WORD! That makes me awesome, just a little late."

You can spin anything I guess :)