Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Sledgehammers and other holy things

There seems to be a bit of a theme happening in the conferences I've been at of late - idols. Interestingly in scripture when God is on the move - and wants to mobalise the people he first calls them to smash their idols. I've been thinking about our idols in culture... fame, success, wealth, comfort, beauty - to name a few. What does it mean to smash an idol in todays context? In Minehead it meant taking a sledgehammer to some cans/cabinets that represented various aspects of our idolatry... people were naming their own idols and we smashed them together - figuratively. I couldn't help imagining what it would look like if thousands of Christians actually smashed their idols... TVs flying off balconies and out of houses/alcohol bottles flowing as they come crashing down/computers and ipods??

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Volcanic Ash and other fun things...

So, turns out the whole of the UK transit system is in lock down due to a volcanic eruption in Iceland. Who knew? I was remembering watching those end of the world movies where everyone is stuck and can't get to safety - turns out that it may not be that far fetched. Loads of people are either stuck in the UK and can't get out - or stuck out and can't get in. Heathrow airport is deserted.
I wonder if it may just be a divine hint to slow down and enjoy life a bit - a life always on the run is fun for a while but there is sometimes an invitation for us to take a break, slow down and smell the roses - hang with friends - waste some time.
I'm terrible at this. I'm much better in a constant state of 'catch up' where everything is pending and depends on me... this is a driver for me - the next book to be written, trip to take, speak to give, project to launch etc... but sometimes, if we listen we can hear the voice of God saying - let's just hang out and have some fun... could that be God?
The sabbath instruction was along these lines... it was to be a constant reminder (economically, socially, emotionally, spiritually) that the people of God were not born to be slaves!! That I can 'amen'. I'm praying that all of those people 'stuck' would listen and hear the divine invitation to throw their lives in the hands of a playful God - and simply have some fun. That would/could cause it's own volcanic eruption - in praise perhaps?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


Not sure I can describe the events of the last few days. People saved, delivered, healed and the people of God allowing His Spirit to transform them... it's exciting days at Springharvest.
Malcolm Duncan delivered a call to 'stand up and fight' - using Esther's declaration 'if I die - I die' as a foundational scriptural call to be counted for change in the world. He used William Booth's words 'I'll fight' and wrote this poem for the occasion - I LOVE IT... it's a powerful word. Read and apply:
I want to be a God-gazer,
captured by the brilliance
that springs from the radiance
of You.
I want to be a God-gazer!
Not a cheap food grazer
or an easy option lazer.
I want to be a trail-blazer
for the ordinary, everyday life.

I want to be a God-gazer -
not just copying the halcyon ways
that shimmer brighter in the haze
 of by-gone rays and the good old days.

I want to be a God-gazer!
Looking beyond the trappings of success,
cutting through the stucco of respectability
like a laser piercing darkness.

I want to be a God-gazer!
Reaching for the stars and
seeing beauty in the moment by
becoming fluent in the language
of the God Who is here, Who is now.

I want to be a God-gazer
until my imagination is saturated;
until my thirst is sated;
until my passion is stirred;
until my intellect is stretched
as far as it can be;
until my yearning yearns
for others to be free.

I want to be a God-gazer -
 not a meetings manager
or a people pleaser
 or a 'tea and sympathy' vicar -
not a leadership trainer,
not just a speaker
but a seeker.

I want to be a God-gazer...
and for the moment I want God
to gaze through me.
I want others to see
His eyes
and Love
above everything else in me.

I want to be a God-gazer
captured by the brilliance
that springs from the radiance
of You.

I want to be a Life-giver
not a life-sucker,
I want my life to be releasing
not appeasing or placating.
I want to be a Life-giver,
A drainpipe without blockages,
A circuit without stoppages,
A connector without breakages.
I want to be a Life-giver!
A 'you can do it' releaser,
A 'have a go' preacher,
A 'you were born to do this' pastor.
I want to be a Life-giver -
Seeing rivers flow, not die,
Seeing others rise and fly,
Helping friends reach for the stars
even if they sometimes miss.
At least they can say they tried.
I want to be a Lie-giver,
Generous in spirit and in heart,
Letting the forgotten make a start
at being Life-givers, too.
I want ot be a Life-giver
because I am a God-gazer
not because it's about me
but because it's about Him
because life can't spring
from any other 'thing'.
I want to be a Life-giver
connected ot the Sorce
and pointing to the Son -
standing in the shadow of the Light
celebrating Him.

I want to be a World-changer
not just a furniture re-arranger
or an 'it could be better' winger
or a 'have the left overs' stinger.
I want to be a World-changer!
A doer, not just a talker.
I want to spread the clothes of heaven,
No more or less than a poor man's dreams,
beneath the feet of Jesus.
I want to be a World-changer -
'Cos on a morning many winters ago
the tomb was open
and the curse was broken.
Death had to let go
and re-creation burst out
of an old wineskin
like water from a geyser,
Like the cry of a child
pushed into the world
and nothing
would shut Him up.
I want to be a World-changer
because it's started...
because the vanguards on the move...
and love is pushing out hate
and light is shining out
and darkness can't understand it
beat it
change it
hide it
kill it
stop it
I want to be a World-changer
because there's safety in this danger.
There's meaning in this purpose.
There's joy in this mission
and too many others are missing
the power of life in all its fullness.
World-changer? LIfe-giver? God-gazer.
God, break in - then break out
Fill - then make me leak.
Plug me in and push me out.
In me, through me, around me
Make me a Patrick.
Make me a Brendan.
God-gazing, life-giving, world-changing.
Capture by the brilliance
that springs from the radiance
of You.

Malcolm Duncan
January 2010

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Easter Camp and Jesus

So, I've been traveling the three campuses of Easter Camp (the New Zealand youth movement at Easter time) this weekend. What a trip. :-)
It was incredible to see so many young people (about 9000 all up) engaging with the events of Jesus' death and resurrection. So many folks were first time seekers and the stories seemed to stream in endlessly about Jesus showing up in their lives - warming their hearts and impacting their futures.
What an amazing God we serve. I was humbled and inspired by what I saw. God really means what He says 'those who seek me will find me.'
You know, this culture really curses young people. the main message seems to be that the most they can hope for is to be good consumers, stay dissatisfied and unhappy and hope to express themselves in extravagant sin. But the gospel is good news for THIS time. They/we/you can be free, holy, true, pure and the redemption shapers of todays world... this is all TRUE and it's only the beginning of what Jesus wants to do in all of us. I'm pumped up. Jesus really is alive - I saw Him all over New Zealand!