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December 2013
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February 2014

The Cycle of Life

Struggle … caterpillar … earth bound Darkness … cocoon … transformation New birth … butterfly … flight New life … colour … beauty … Sudden death - one life for another All too soon. Is there more? [Mark Conner - January 23rd, 2014. Written after observing a willy wagtail eat a butterfly on a walking trail, leaving just it's beautiful wings. Note the ant already there] Read more →


Silence and Solitude

Day started well ... a walk, silence, conversation, coffee. Serenity invaded by noise. Walking away now … … Slow down An invitation … to silence … Just to BE. Sit down … stay awhile No rush … no hurry Still Peace. Joy. Loved. Content. Enough. Look … listen … No agenda. Together, that's all. One. Timelessness … present … this moment Now. Here. Today. With the I AM. Wait … No outcome … just experience ... and presence. Jesus walked everywhere In conversation Listened and observed Taught people from that Simple. Profound. Fresh. New. Life [Mark Conner. January 23rd. 2014] Read more →


Prophets

Prophets are poets Wordsmiths and craftsmen Musicians who muse Prophets are seers Artists and artisans Visionaries who venture Ears always open Listening to hear Waiting for words Attentive to sound Eyes always open Looking to see Watching for pictures Observant to images Bushes still burn God waits to see Most pass on by Few stop to look God's heart, God's mind Pathos and ethos then logos Words with power To change and transform Where are the prophets? Time to roar [Mark Conner - January 22nd, 2014] Next Poem - Silence and Solitude Read more →


A Very Different World

Cars replace donkeys The pub over the synagogue Image over character Looks trump who you are Crowded yet lonely Advanced yet stunted Welcome to our world Yet people are still the same Hungry and thirsty For meaning and friendship God is still the same too Speaking through burning bushes When people take time to look Busy, busy, always in a hurry Faster than ever before Distraction, obsession, boredom Attention deficit disorder Quickly moving on to what's next Hardly noticing … no time Packed but empty lives More turns out to be less Slow is actually fast And less is really... Read more →


My Poetry

Rhythm more than rhyme Feelings over form Words over whatever No thunder No lightning Just a whisper Listen then write Read then listen Inspired circle Express the heart Tease the mind Stir the spirit Articulate life Words have power Shape your world Never the same See the change Transformation [Mark Conner - January 23rd, 2014] Next Poem - A Very Different World Read more →


Remember Being Loved

Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. So I will bless you as long as I live; I will lift up my hands and call on your name. My soul is satisfied as with a rich feast, and my mouth praises you with joyful lips (Psalm 63:3-5). After reading the above psalm, take a few moments aside and reflect on a time when you felt loved. Remember the experience and the circumstances surrounding it. Remain there for a few minutes. Re-live the experience. How did you feel? What was it like. Now, Bring that... Read more →


Inner Peace from God's Love

[I] created you ... [I] formed you ... Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through the fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior ... Because you are precious in my sight, and honored, and I love you. Isaiah 43:1-4a Read more →


The Ultimate Goal of Preaching (by Rick Warren)

If God’s objective for every believer is to transform us into total Christlikeness, then the objective of preaching is to motivate people to develop Christlike convictions (to think like Jesus), Christlike character (to feel like Jesus), and Christlike conduct (to act like Jesus). Every other objective of preaching is secondary. At the end of the sermon, if people aren’t being transformed in how they think, feel, and act, I’ve missed the mark as a preacher. To put it another way, the ultimate goal of preaching is not information. In fact, giving people a greater knowledge of the Bible can cause... Read more →


The 18th Camel

A little wisdom goes a long way. When you give you will always get it back. A father left 17 camels as an asset for his three sons. When the father passed away, his sons opened up the will. The Will of the father stated that the eldest son should get half of 17 camels while the middle son should be given 1/3rd (one-third). The youngest son should be given 1/9th (one-ninth) of the 17 camels. As it is not possible to divide 17 into half or 17 by 3 or 17 by 9, three sons started to fight with... Read more →


The Power of 1% (by James Clear)

This Coach Improved Every Tiny Thing by 1 Percent and Here's What Happened In 2010, Dave Brailsford faced a tough job. No British cyclist had ever won the Tour de France, but as the new General Manager and Performance Director for Team Sky (Great Britain's professional cycling team), that's what Brailsford was asked to do. His approach was simple. Brailsford believed in a concept that he referred to as the "aggregation of marginal gains." He explained it as the "1 percent margin for improvement in everything you do." His belief was that if you improved every area related to cycling... Read more →


5 Reasons to Commit Your Goals in Writing (by Michael Hyatt)

A great recent post from Michael Hyatt, worth repeating ... As 2013 has rolled over to 2014, there has been the usual emphasis on New Year’s resolutions. Network television, radio shows, podcasts, and blogs have all had features on the topic. But the truth is, New Year’s resolutions don’t work. Get this: 25 percent of people abandon their New Year’s resolutions after one week. 60 percent of people abandon them within six months. (The average person makes the same New Year’s resolution ten separate times without success.) Only 5 percent of those who lose weight on a diet keep it... Read more →


Sabbath - time to STOP

A few thoughts on Sabbath by Wayne Muller ... "Sabbath is not dependent upon our readiness to stop. We do not stop when we are finished. We do not stop when we complete our phone calls, finish our project, get through this stack of messages, or get out this report. We stop because it is time to stop. Sabbath requires surrender. If we only stop when we are finished with all our work, we will never stop—because our work is never completely done." [Source] See also "Ancient Practices - Sabbath." Read more →


Planning for the New Year (Conclusion)

We've just spent the last series of BLOG posts doing some Planning for the New Year exercises. Over this time we have looked at six steps for leading your own life. Each of these six simple steps can also be applied to your church, your ministry, your organisation or business, your family, as well as your career. You need to know God’s (1) mission and your (2) roles. You need to establish (3) goals and organise your (4) time. You need to put your plan into (5) action and finally you need to take regular time to (6) evaluate your... Read more →


Planning for the New Year (Pt.13)

Our final step in Planning for thre New Year is ... STEP 6 - Evaluate. Effective life leadership requires that we take time to evaluate our lives and our progress. Every Christian needs to periodically take a spiritual “stocktake”. We need to bring ourselves to account, to see how we are really doing. It is very easy to live by the “clock”, focusing on working faster, harder and even smarter. However, going faster is not helpful if we are heading in the wrong direction. We must regularly take out the “compass” and ensure that our lives are aligned with our... Read more →


Planning for the New Year (Pt.12)

Happy New Year! Let's move on to the next step in Planning for the New Year ... STEP 5 - Do God's Will Paul’s instructions to the believers at Ephesus were action-orientated (Eph.5-6). He gave them things he wanted them to do. They were to take action, which meant to start doing things they weren’t already doing or to stop doing things that should not be done. He expected them to take full responsibility for the daily choices they made. A mission or a goal becomes effective only when it is translated into action. We need a balanced perspective between... Read more →