The Last Breath

The Last Breath

A couple of weeks ago when I was ministering in Auckland I woke to 36 missed calls and 120 text messages. Immediately I went to worst case scenario, not even I’m that popular that I would get that many good messages. Sure enough, I discovered the sad news that a nationwide search was under way for my uncle and aunty as they were missing. Eventually their car was found a day later upturned on a country road. Sadly neither had survived the accident. Devastating news for all involved. [Read more…]

New Blog: Freedom and Boundaries

Gen 2:16-17(NIV)

“And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden;

but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”

Everyone needs both freedom and boundaries for their work and life to succeed. God set up the ultimate work environment in the Garden of Eden. He gave Adam and Eve responsibility to manage the animals, the agriculture and every activity. He gave them specific instructions as to how things were to be done, and liberty of expression in fulfilling their tasks.

[Read more…]

New Blog: A Narrow Road

“But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” Matthew 7:14

As I am pondering this passage, the first thing that jumps to mind is ‘congratulations’ to those who have found the gate and the beautiful narrow path of salvation.

It is quite confronting as you read verses 13 to 14, as it describes only a few finding the pathway that leads to salvation. It is not a popular thought but it pushes me and motivates me to witness to as many people as I can while I have influence on this temporal planet.

New Blog: Unwholesome Talk

“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” Ephesians 4:29

The bible is quite specific and clear when it says ‘Do not let unwholesome talk come out of your mouth”!  In fact the whole of Chapter 4 of Ephesians is very challenging talking on the way we present ourselves and the art of forgiveness. For the Bible to say “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouth” it is quite confronting and I think it is easier said than done. How easy is it to be sucked into the lowest common denominator of cheap jokes, sarcasm and gossip and before you know it, you are somewhere down in the gutter again wondering how on earth you got there.

New Blog: One Drop Can Change The World

“Individually we are one drop, together we are an ocean” – Ryunosuke Satoro

It seems to me every time I look at the news the world is in chaos. Floods, famines, wars, earthquakes, rumours of more wars, mass murders…what’s the world coming to?

Often it feels overwhelming and quite confronting watching events come to you live with technology being so well advanced. Janine and I often think about these tragedies that we are confronted with and what our response is to them. Options are; we can send money, we can pray, we can go, we can raise awareness through social media or we can do nothing. I would like to say that I did something most of the time but the truth is it’s not until your heart is engaged that you really feel that compulsion to put something into action. The dying to self and to your comfort is probably the challenge that most of us face.

New Blog: Walking Alone

It is interesting that although we are surrounded with so many people in our workplaces, neighbourhoods and social media, we can all of a sudden have an overwhelming sense of loneliness.

I laugh out loud as I write this after Janine has just completed two weeks ministering in Cambodia. In that time my two boys and I have conquered basketball three times a week, swimming training, grandfather’s day, two cross country events at school, washing, cooking, homework, movies, Xbox and church. I have loved every minute of it. I wouldn’t have traded this time of being a father and juggling work for anything. However, once the business of life subsides, the boys are tucked into bed and I sit down to a cup of tea, a sense of loneliness becomes apparent. It is not that I am by myself and it is not that I am not busy; it is just that in that particular moment I am alone.

New Blog: Eternal Perspective

In James 4:14 our life is described as a ‘morning mist’. Paul says “Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes..”. Again in Psalm 144:4 our lives are described as: “They are like a breath; their days are like a fleeting shadow.”

It is sobering to think that our lives are so fragile and so short in the scale of time. In comparison to the enormity of God’s eternal presence our existence on Earth is fleeting – here today and gone tomorrow. The other week when I was ministering in South Africa my parents rang to say my brother had had a heart attack. This was an incredible shock to me because by all outward appearances he had looked healthy. Of course this sent me into prayer and to intercede on his behalf.

New Blog: There is Always Hope

The highest rating TV series in Australia so far this year has been the ‘Never Tear us Apart’, the story of the band INXS and its charismatic lead singer Michael Hutchence. I understand the interest in this story, because like so many Kiwis and Australians of my generation, I was a huge fan of the band. The music of INXS provided the soundtrack to my adolescence.

I must admit I couldn’t bring myself to watch the program because I knew how it all would end and I couldn’t bear to watch it unfold before my eyes. The music of INXS ended suddenly when in a moment of hopelessness Michael Hutchence, in 1997, tragically took his own life. At the time I didn’t understand the unrelenting pain and sense of hopelessness that brings people to the place of considering death as the only means to peace.

New Blog: Marriage Works

Over coffee with my father and mother-in-law we got talking about working on one’s marriage. (Worst nightmare territory, parents in law and talking about feelings/marriage, to be honest I’d rather just watch the Rugby). I felt like I was walking through a minefield: one wrong step and things would start exploding!