Thursday, February 26, 2004

it's snowing!! how cool!? not that cool if you live in bristol and you need to take a bus home, i've just heard that the buses in bristol have been recalled until the council can grit the roads...


also, my wife and i are taking tomorrow off to have a long weekend. as an extra bonus, our very good friend, jacqui chan, is flying in from toulouse for the weekend too.

helped decorate one of our housegroup's house last night (just a wee bit of painting) and am really sore today! weird, getting achy muscles from painting?!

Tuesday, February 24, 2004

haloscan does Trackback

now i'm trying to figure out what it does... presumably would've made my latest exchange with nomes a lot easier (was i guilty of 'blogwhoring' then?).
comment on nomes' post dated 22.02.04

y'know, when you told me about that post, i was sorely tempted to wind some of those women up as i thought they were over-reacting and more than a wee bit touchy. but as i read the post and tried to read through the comments i thought better of it.

i think i realised that those women were genuinely hurt and offended, and although i didn't agree with their reading of the post, i guess it would have been nasty to aggravate things further.

at first, i was amused by their over-reactions, then bemused and confused! clearly these women are not having a go just for the sake of it (as i was about to!), but reacting out of their own experiences. now i can't relate to what they've experienced, but it must be fairly gutting to have lived through whatever's happened to them, so that a comment seemingly as innoccuous as that should provoke such a biting reflex. such responses aren't simply off the cuff; i must confess i wasn't aware of the depth of hurt around that issue. what have we done to these intelligent and capable women to make them react in such a way?

Friday, February 20, 2004

set up a new link to a website about martin luther king jr after a discussion in housegroup about one of his speeches. the discussion was about how king's speech, originally against the vietnam war, was relevant today and we spoke about a wide range of issues that night, though every one was concerned with God's justice.

what struck me was the insights that king had regarding his situation. he condemned his government for using an anti-communist stance as a pretext for all sorts of military actions (direct, such as vietnam, or indirect, such as providing arms to 'anti-communist' states in africa). the parallels this has to our situation today is unavoidable.

under the excuse of 'anti-terrorism' the UK and the US have invaded Afghanistan, ousting the Taliban. now, without the check of the Taliban to prevent this, the majority of the world's opium poppies are grown in Afghanistan.

under the excuse of 'anti-terrorism' the UK and the US have invaded Iraq and removed saddam hussein from power, only decades after they had assisted his wars against Iran by providing him with weapons.

under the excuse of 'anti-terrorism' the US supports the state of israel in its continued oppression of the palestinian people.

two quotes from his speech Beyond Vietnam:

"This is the message of the great Buddhist leaders of Vietnam. Recently one of them wrote these words, and I quote:

'Each day the war goes on the hatred increases in the hearts of the Vietnamese and in the hearts of those of humanitarian instinct. The Americans are forcing even their friends into becoming their enemies. It is curious that the Americans, who calculate so carefully on the possibilities of military victory, do not realize that in the process they are incurring deep psychological and political defeat. The image of America will never again be the image of revolution, freedom, and democracy, but the image of violence and militarism.'"

is this not true of the west in the eyes of the muslim world today? if the US is the self-appointed "policeman of the world", qui custodiet ipsos custodes? (who polices those who police?)

"It is with such activity in mind that the words of the late John F. Kennedy come back to haunt us. Five years ago he said, "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." Increasingly, by choice or by accident, this is the role our nation has taken: the role of those who make peaceful revolution impossible by refusing to give up the privileges and the pleasures that come from the immense profits of overseas investments. I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered."

nuff said. lets make disciples.

Monday, February 16, 2004

today, as i walked into work, i walked past an old man who looked like he'd been beaten up. what i'm ashamed to say is that i only registered his condition, thinking to myself, 'someone should stop and offer that guy some help', and it was some thirty seconds later when i realised that i should have been that someone. why did i walk on? i was concentrating on getting in to work on time, the quick pace of the 'late-for-work-employee' took me past him in barely three seconds. i don't like being this kind of person, i don't want my job to master my life. i don't want to be afraid of not having enough stuff, money, food, the right clothes, status, a 'secure future', 'peace of mind' and all that a career offers (but will only provide in exchange for your blood, sweat and tears). i don't want to get used to going home and thinking that because it's before eight it's not that bad. i don't want to be afraid of what others think of me.

why are north korean peasants forced to eat bark, while in the west there are more obese people than ever before (a recently published 'scientific study' confirms what is pretty bloody obvious - there is a link between being obese and consuming too many calories after all)? what is up with the world?!

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

been a bit busy at work recently, so am trying to discipline myself in having a lunch break and doing a bit of blogging a bit at lunch time. at the moment, work is non-stop, so the only breaks i have are when i visit the gents.

this weekend, i hope to be able to get away to our small group leaders training 'thing', and attendees have been given some homework to do as prep.

today i have the following two quotes to reflect on:

"Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of Hosts;
the whole earth is full of His glory"

Isaiah 6 v 3


"If you are a guide on a sightseeing trip, and you know the people are longing to enjoy beauty, and you come upon some breathtaking ravine, then you should show it to them and urge them to enjoy it. Well, the human race does in fact crave the experience of awe and wonder. And there it no reality more breathtaking than God."

john piper, Desiring God

yesterday morning, i was thrilled to see a bird (i think it was a thrush) on my birdtable. i guess i have been appreciating God's creation, and i ought to take that on a stage into appreciating Him. it's also a reminder of how much i need to acknowledge the adequacy of God, as set out in packer's Knowing God.

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

wot i have been doing today...



Monday, February 02, 2004

Click here to find out why.
i gave this a go on recommendation from my friend jon:

create your own visited country map

hey, did anyone else catch johnny rotten on "I'm a Celebrity" last night? i hope i don't misquote the chap but, on the subject of being stuck in an australian jungle, i think he said:

"God's got a lot to answer for, but He's also done a lot to be appreciated"

cf Romans 1 v 20

"From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that God made. They can clearly see his invisible qualities - his eternal power and divine nature."
the bird table is up! a few hours work over the weekend, in which i discovered my wife is far better at sawing in a straight line than i am. however, she graciously noted that my skewed attempts created a pretty zig-zag pattern on the edge of the bird table - quite frankly, i'll take any compliments i can any day!

and, as i happily put out the feed on our new, home-made bird table for the bird (the one regularly seen visitor, aside from a cat is one blue tit) i noted with immense satisfaction that there were beak marks in the food.

i was really encouraged this weekend when praying for people. i gave them some words that i thought God was encouraging them with, and i checked afterwards to see if they were right or not. as it turns out they were, i was amazed at how we are used by Him to help each other. i only wish now that i had checked earlier, instead of getting worried about being wrong and stopping praying quickly.

one of the things i really love about my wife is that we really laugh lots. just thought i'd say that.