Sunday, April 30, 2006


......are our eyes trying to say with their tears?

Friday, April 28, 2006

We are not as strong as we think we are...

my heart is ageing...that i can tell....

'Well, it took the hand of God Almighty
To part the waters of the sea
But it only took one little lie
To separate you and me
Oh, we are not as strong as we think we are

And they say that one day Joshua
Made the sun stand still in the sky
But I can't even keep these thoughts of you from passing by
Oh, we are not as strong as we think we are

We are frail, we are fearfully and wonderfully made
Forged in the fires of human passion
Choking on the fumes of selfish rage
And with these our hells and our heavens
So few inches apart
We must be awfully small
And not as strong as we think we are

And the Master said their faith was
Gonna make them mountains move
But me, I tremble like a hill on a fault line
Just at the thought of how I lost you
Oh, we are not as strong as we think we are

We are frail, we are fearfully and wonderfully made
Forged in the fires of human passion
Choking on the fumes of selfish rage
And with these our hells and our heavens
So few inches apart
We must be awfully small
And not as strong as we think we are

And if you make me laugh
I know I could make you like me
'Cause when I laugh I can be a lot of fun
But we can't do that I know that it is frightening
What I don't know is why we can't hold on
We can't hold on.

It took the hand of God Almighty
To part the waters of the sea
But it only took one little lie
To separate you and me
Oh, we are not as strong as we think we are

When you love you walk on the water
Just don't stumble on the waves
We all want to go there somethin' awful
But to stand there it takes some grace
'Cause oh, we are not as strong
As we think we are

No, we are not as strong
As we think we are.'
(Rich Mullins)

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

In the Arms of the Angels...

...'in this madness, this glorious sadness', i wonder just what does bring us to our knees.......the wreckage must be bad when this is the only way some find comfort...

Friday, April 21, 2006

Terrible Prayers

'I have always been terrible at praying
I forget
My mind wanders
I fall asleep
I don't pray enough
I don't undersatnd what prayer is
Or what prayer does.

If prayer were school...
I would flunk praying

But prayer isn't school
It is mystery

Maybe the mystery is...
Jesus loves terrible prayers
When I can't think of anything to say, he says what I can't say
When I talk too much, he chersihes my too many words
When I fall asleep, he holds me in his lap and caresses my weary soul
When I am overwhelmed with guilt at my inconsistent, inadequate praying
He whispers, "Your name is always on my lips"

I am filled with gratitude, my soul overflows with thankfulness and I...
I...find myself saying over and over again, "thank you"
Praying the mystery

(Mike Yaconelli).........god i miss him...

Thursday, April 20, 2006


I am bloody angry! I have just witnessed an ignorance that made me shake with rage. 3 prominant evangelical church leaders have just been meeting here at the ecumenical centre and as they were leaving i overheard (maybe i was meant to) their conversation - they were ranting about the evils of the muslim people and how 'we' should have nothing to do with their darkness! Is there any wonder this world is so fucked up? In the end I followed them out and said, "gentlemen, it's a good job god is more merciful than we are, is it not?"

there was no reply...

i wrote this 2 years ago....and i stand by every word

One Blessing.

Soul troubled, moved, angry, lamenting, loving, feeling, trying to reach out, touch, feel, soothe, caress the weary and broken...

Have just come back from the city that according to the Chief of Police has moved from a place of 'if' to 'when' for an amazingly provocative conference. Run by the 'Friends of Al Aqsa' a friend and I were treated to a wealth of historic, spiritual insight and vision for the future regarding 'The Impact of Zionism on Jewish, Christian and Muslim Relations'.

There is a real danger when one assumes one knows a fair bit about a certain subject - when one feels one understands the situation pretty well - when one thinks one has the i's dotted and the t's crossed. Hmm, I find it worrying when I hear people make such assumptions. Here's my point, I thought I was reasonably well read - now I know that I know very little. My friend and I hooked up with our buddy Garth Hewitt whilst there as I'm putting together a similar conference next year - 'Sons and Daughters of Abraham: Three Faiths - One Blessing?' Surely we have to be about building bridges rather than burning them?

I found it so moving to see Jews and Muslims embracing each other as brothers and sisters, longing for peace and the chance once again to live side by side and learn from one another. I cried as a Palestinian Muslim, through his tears, felt that after 40 years of struggle somehow his work had finally been vindicated after hearing from the lips of Jews that the land should be shared and that spiritual history had been tampered with. Evangelicals speak of the presence of the holy spirit descending when anointed people speak. I have sensed this from time to time, but never like this man - who just happened to be a Palestinian Muslim, and an ex-terrorist! How little we understand about the character of our Maker!

I'm bloody fed up with a boxed-in God, with a people who have their heads so far up their spiritual backsides they can't see the whisper of God's spirit moving beautifully through our terror torn communities. The irritation is refreshed to go clear the land for a new culture. Not one of Zionism, but one filled with the fragrance of Gethsemene and Calvary. As Douglas Coupland suggests in 'Girlfriend in a Coma', "If you are not spending every waking moment of your life radically rethinking the nature of the world - if you're not plotting every moment boiling the carcass of the old order - then you're wasting your day."

It's time we started sifting our souls of the muck and mire of our spiritual ego's and think very hard what it means to take up the basin and towel in today's world! As the wonderful Desmond Tutu says, "God says to you, I have a dream. Please help me realise it. It is a dream of a world whose ugliness and squalor and poverty, whose war and hostility, greed and harsh competitiveness, alienation and disharmony are changed into their glorious counterparts."

I remain thankful to my Muslim and Jewish family...We're one but we're not the same...we've got to carry each other, carry each other, carry each


'I dwell in possibility.'
emily dickinson

maybe in the end we are the ones who shape our destiny and not some divine puppeteer. i never bought into predestination, the seed of choice planted deep in our soul is possibly the greatest gift we have been given and the very grace that ultimately allows us to dwell in our possibility...

Wednesday, April 19, 2006


"We are all visitors to this time, this place. We are just passing through. Our purpose here is to observe, to learn, to grow, to love...and then we return home."
Aboriginal Proverb

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


It's hard to see the stars when you are out in the heart of a city of blinding lights. To look with a pilgrims eyes and dream with my heart to see what really matters is a journey i want to make....i don't know where it will lead me, but it's a journey i must undertake if i am ever to find out who i should and possibly could pip says, the beautiful human i am becoming.

I have been thinking about brokenness of late, and i am starting to see the beauty from within its heart. I think it was Kierkegaard who said that those who He (and She) would use, he (she) first reduces to nothing, i suppose meaning that we need to be broken before we can be mended - if we are to truly mourn with those who mourn we need to have suffered first ourselves. Adversities do not make a weak person, they reveal what strength they have...

Liverpool, England has been in the media spotlight of late. the BBC have been filming the L'Arche Community for a programme on how friendship can help the spiritual life of people with learning disabilities. The programme asks if the example of L'Arche can offer other people lessons about their own religious communities and how inclusive they are. I get the feeling that when we are truly inclusive (regardless of race, colour, creed, gender etc etc) we find real lasting beauty in places this world dictates beauty shouldn't belong.

An openness to the weak and those in need helps us to open our hearts to all humanity. Jean Vanier suggests that we should be 'helping people to break free of the egotism inherent in us all and to grow towards greater maturity and inner discover our common humanity, allowing us to be ourselves, intertwined with each other, receiving and giving life from one another.'

We all share ther same sky, and we all belong to God whether disabled or not in some way...the man of sorrows revealed a new kind of beauty. He did show us that it is possible to accept our limits and our handicaps and allow us to see that they may just be our gifts...we should never cover up our weaknesses, rather allow our own shadow areas to inform our life decisions because they are the directions for the road of compassion...the pathway of suffering with others and seeing beauty from within that.

'We are simply human beings, enfolded in weakness and in hope, called together to change our world one heart at a time.'
(Jean Vanier)

Monday, April 17, 2006

Broken humanity

We are all fundamentally the same. we all belong to a common, broken humanity. We all have wounded and vulnerable hearts. Each one of us needs to feel appreciated and understood; in truth, we all need help.

But here's the secret, i see more clearly now that those who are weak and broken and in need have a secret power to touch hearts and bring us together into mutual belonging, whatever our background...i think i have said this before, but i don't mind saying it again; the strength in Christianity is found in the fragrance of gethsemane and calvary...not pentecost

Sunday, April 16, 2006

regret? you miss this place? Yes, every you regret leaving?...never....

the sunshine of our life... many great days do we have in our lives? maybe easter is about new chapters, new opportunities and graces, maybe...

"Every good and true thing is given to us from heaven, coming from the Father of Lights." (James 1:17)

Friday, April 14, 2006


...maybe we all are...lost, that is...and maybe that's not such a bad be lost enough to let ourselves be led. Maybe that is what this holy weekend is about. truth is i am pissed off tonight...yes i screw up, yes i fail those i love...but am pissed all the same...i wish i could understand more than i do. my crazy friend campolo says it's friday....but sunday's coming, and he is right, period. yet living in the cosmic saturday where you have to deal with all the shit is not easy...

i have let down and i feel let down today...sunday seems a long time coming...

Watch with him...

Something Jude said has been pulling at my soul...'We have all betrayed and been betrayed, yet I still have no idea what it must have been like. Can I not watch with Him one hour?'

Makes me realise i am no different...i would have slept and denied also...

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Growth... sure to make mistakes, make a lot of them, because there's no better way to learn and grow...

Wednesday, April 12, 2006


'Even if our efforts of attention seem for years to be producing no results, one day a light that is in exact proportion will flood the soul.'
(Simone Weil)

...for all those who seems to not be able to find the light switch...

Monday, April 10, 2006


my boy looked out of the window, seemingly bemused by the heavy rain, and asked, 'daddy, why is the sky crying?'

Sunday, April 09, 2006

happiness...'s not about getting it's about knowing when something is wrong and doing something about it....

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Eternal Vessels

"I too am a vineyard and like new wine I shall be kept in eternal vessels."
Kahil Gibran

...for our futures, no matter what they may hold....

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

A question...

...someone explain to me the malady of the human heart...cos i sure as hell can't.

Monday, April 03, 2006

The wounded

'How strange that we should ordinarily feel compelled to hide our wounds when we are all wounded.'
M. Scott Peck, A Different Drum

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Tree Spirit

'They also serve who only stand and wait.'
Milton, Sonnet 16

I have always loved trees so i suppose it was hardly surprising that i ended up being an arborist until a few years ago when my shoulder finally said enough was enough. As a child i climed hundreds, falling out of many of them, but it was only in later years that i realised the importance of these precious creations.

Trees hold great treasures, they are mysterious by nature, beautiful by design, and have inspired and been involved in many life changing moments from history. In the garden of eden, the trees are the creations that hold the answers to life and death. The buddha received enlightenment under a peepul tree, and Jesus was killed on one...Tolkein used tree beard and his brothers as a parable to warn of what will happen if the world continues to abuse the sensibility of trees...the greed and stupidity of those hell bent on destroying the wildwoods of this world must be stopped.

The human debt to trees is absolute, they are sentient and are the prime players of this created world...we are dependant on their survival. they are icons pointing on beyond themselves and they should be revered.

here endeth my sermon...