I know; a number of you have reminded me that this epistle is long overdue. What can I say? Maybe I need to alter the way METTLE Newsletter works so that you all can contribute, like a truly collaborative blog. Hmm, let me see what I can do about that. Does anybody else like that idea?
Anyway, in April I:
- Read a book;
- Started a Kids Bible Club;
- Did no study;
- Started a new website for Align Church;
- Started Squash Winter Interclub; and
- Attended a funeral;
My hope is that this newsletter adds to your guidance about where in the world God wants to use your talents. If this newsletter has assisted you in this goal, we’d love to hear from you!
- NTH ASIA. This May 05 – 15 Mary & I will be in South Korea (5-10) and then I go onto Japan (11-15) to attend a special “closed door” mission conference that will focus on the unfinished task – relating to the Great Commission. In Korea we will be spending time with each of the 3 different WO teams operating in this country, one of which has its northern near neighbour very much on their radar screen for future ministry involvement. We would really appreciate your prayers for wisdom for the many meetings we will have, for good health & protection and that we also catch God’s heart for what the Holy Spirit is doing in this region of the world.
- KAIROS. The very popular and impacting KAIROS cross cultural studies that many World Outreach teams are involved in conducting, will this month see KAIROS expanding in Russia, Taiwan, and Korea. Pray that these mission awakening studies will see church leaders and individual delegates catch the heart of God for all nations, and come away with both a passion and determination to become involved in this end time move of the Holy Spirit.
- KEY POSITION. Attached, please find a job description brief for an Operations Director that World Outreach International needs to appoint – to be located here in S’pore – preferably before the end of this year. I would appreciate it if you could kindly circulate this information to your email network of contacts / friends. Who knows who’s heart the Holy Spirit is already preparing for this call! Please direct any interest to Luke Chong email@example.com in the first instance. The role of an Operations Director is a very key & important position in WOI, especially so with the organization steadily growing each year in both field personnel and ministries. Please be praying with us for the right person.
- BURKINA FASO. Danny Bayasen, WO field leader, writes: “We are raising up an army of young people (called Burkina Forerunners) to reach out to 5,000 children from least reach people groups by the end of this year. After training groups of young people form clubs to attract children to various activities. Two clubs have started, another two are about to, and more than 50 children are already attending. Some 20 of our young people went through training on “how to heal the sick.” During the practical, many people were healed. A woman was instantly healed of severe stomach pains, another woman who had pain all over her body felt as if cold water was being poured on her body. She was healed. A 5 year old boy who had weak legs and could not walk started to run. Two demonized women got delivered and many more.Do pray for the Burkina Forerunners to continue evangelizing and training others to evangelize.”
- WO TEAMS. Many WO fields today have more teams set ups than individuals / couples serving by themselves. While teams can accomplish much in a short period, at the same time the individual team members need regular input and encouragement, even in their busyness and seeing fruitful results happening around them. Please keep our different WO teams in prayer asking the Lord to bless them with unity, resources, favour, good health, also that the mothers & children too will feel part of the bigger (local) team picture, and that they all will have lots of good fun together.
- THAILAND. Please pray for Thailand. Things are very critical there with huge protests now into the 8th week. A European crisis groups says, “the political system has broken down. The stand-off in Bangkok between the gov’t and ‘red shirt’ protesters is worsening and could deteriorate into an undeclared civil war.” Pray that peace and order will return to the land and that righteousness will prevail.
- RESOURCES. Missionaries have big dreams and choose to let the Holy Spirit direct what they can / cannot do – rather than limited resources. This month I have compiled a “wish list” of financial project needs that many different WO ministries are looking to the Lord to provide them. Please pray with us that there will be an extra steady supply of resources in the coming weeks that will help bless the projects in need. Thank you.
Koinonia House News
IMPORTANT NEWS HEADLINES
- David Cameron Is New British PM
May 11, 2010
Conservative leader David Cameron has become the new prime minister after the resignation of Gordon Brown. Mr Cameron, who at 43 is the youngest PM in nearly 200 years, vowed to set aside party differences and govern "in the national interest". His party won the most seats in the general election last week, but not an overall Commons majority. The Lib Dem parliamentary party and its federal executive endorsed the coalition agreement by the required three-quarters majority at a meeting that broke up just after midnight.
– BBC News
- Pope Accepts Catholic Church Responsibility For Sex Abuse
May 11, 2010
The Pope has laid the blame for the "truly terrifying" clerical sex abuse crisis squarely on the Catholic Church for the first time as he arrived in Portugal for a four-day visit. Benedict XVI said that "the greatest persecution of the church does not come from enemies on the outside but is born from the sins within the church." His remarks were a repudiation of a string of senior figures of Vatican who in recent months have attributed the scandal to a shadowy conspiracy mounted by outsiders, ranging from a hostile media to liberals within the Church.
- Netanyahu Tells Iran Israel Has No War Aspirations
May 11, 2010
As Iran’s military conducted military drills in the Gulf of Oman and the Strait of Hormuz, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu blamed Iran for provoking a war between Israel and Syria, and said Israel has no intention of attacking its neighbors. This is Iran’s fifth year of holding annual war games in the Persian Gulf, which are intended both to train Iranian soldiers and to intimidate its potential enemies. It is Iran’s second large-scale military exercise this year. The Strait of Hormuz is a narrow and highly strategic waterway between the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman. Iran has previously threatened that if attacked, it would shut down the strait, halting oil traffic.
– Arutz Sheva
- Teen Pregnancy Down But Single Mom Births Up
May 11, 2010
Compared with 20 years ago, today’s mothers of newborns are older, more educated, less often white, more often Hispanic – and less often married. A record 41 percent of American births in 2008 were to single mothers, according to a new study of census and other data released by the Pew Research Center in time for Mother’s Day. That’s an increase from 28 percent in 1990. That does not bode well for the kids. Traditional marriage is better for kids emotionally, academically and economically. But, after disturbing surges in the 1980s, teen birthrates and pregnancy rates are down to their lowest level in 20 years.
– Chicago Tribune
- UK: Flag of Jesus Frowned On As Religious ‘Advertising’
April 29, 2010
Rev Mark Binney, vicar of St Andrew’s Church, Hampton, Worcs, said he had been told he needed planning permission if he wanted to fly a flag "advertising Christianity" in future. The flag was put up outside the church in the week preceding Easter Sunday displaying the words ‘This is Holy Week’ and an image of Jesus on the cross. Mr Binney said the warning was "appalling", and he felt it was part of a gradual erosion of Christianity in Britain.
- Supreme Court Rules In Favor of Mojave Cross
April 29, 2010
The Supreme Court yesterday said a lower federal court was wrong to order the removal of a cross on government land in the middle of the Mojave Desert, and said separation of church and state "does not require eradication of all religious symbols in the public realm." The case, which involved a white cross erected by veterans more than 75 years ago to honor the dead of World War I, splintered the court, 5 to 4. The court’s conservative members prevailed, but six of the nine justices wrote to explain their views.
– The Washington Post
Why I Am A Climate Realist
I thought you may be interested…in a new satirical interview just posted on Youtube.
“Nicholas Smith”, Minister for the Environment and Minister for Climate Change Issues in New Zealand’s National Government, sat down with Renton Maclachlan for an in your face, in depth interview on the upcoming Emission Trading Scheme and other Climate Change issues.
"Nicholas Smith" – Emissions Trading Scheme & Climate Change
If you watch and enjoy the video, please send it on to all and sundry who you think may also enjoy it.
(It’s estimated that the ETS, starting on July 1st, will cost every NZ household around $2-3000 per year. In the words of Nick Smith 2005, “We need to bury this lemon.”)
All the best
Why I Am A Creationist
CMI-Australia’s Dr Carl Wieland was recently invited to participate in what was billed as a ‘debate’ (but was more of a moderated exchange) on South African national radio. It concerned a new fossil find in that country Australopithecus sediba, hailed as a crucial breakthrough in human evolution. Other participants were Prof Francis Thackeray, Director of the Institute of Human Evolution, University of Witwatersrand, and Dr Louw Alberts, a retired physicist who was introduced as “a scientist who is a dedicated Christian”. The issue is particularly ‘hot’ in South Africa, with overtones of national pride; their Deputy President said recently of this find:
“One of the most common questions a child asks when they are first capable of reason is, ‘Where do I come from?’ It has become increasingly clear in recent years that the answer to that question is ‘Africa — your ancestors are from Africa’.”
For a detailed discussion of the fossil find, see the article on CMI’s website Australopithecus sediba—no human ancestor.
Is it Noah’s Ark?
A Chinese/Turkish joint announcement in Hong Kong claims to have found a structure with wooden rooms buried under the ice at 4,200 metres (14,000 feet) on Mount Ararat. Others are saying that they are likely the victims of a fraud. The still shots are stunning, and obviously indicate wood, and it may be some time before anything is known for certain. For an overview, and an ongoing commentary (with updates as time goes on) bookmark our news item at creation.com/is-it-noahs-ark.
A formerly well-known Australian pastor of one of Australia’s largest churches has written a book to persuade people to join him in atheism. No prizes for guessing which book of the Bible he attacks the most.
Brian Baker book review
Why do diverse cultures have similar constellations?
It’s due to history, and the accounts we have from different people groups around the world show that it’s the Bible’s history that makes the most sense.
Read Constellations: legacy of the dispersion from Babel—one of our featured articles from our in-depth Journal of Creation.
…Who Believed the Bible
Louis Agassiz was the father of glacial geology and a great palaeontologist. He believed in God and in His special creation of every kind of organism. When Darwin’s Origin began to gain favour, Agassiz spoke out strongly against it.
In a Friday Fax exclusive, we report on an impending meeting in Geneva where abortion proponents Amnesty International, Center for Reproductive Rights, and the UN Population Fund will try to get two human rights monitoring bodies to make a right to abortion a human right.
We also report on efforts of the Canadian government to resist American efforts to make abortion a part of the upcoming G8 meetings.
Spread the word.
By Samantha Singson
(NEW YORK – C-FAM) This week, abortion advocates the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) and Amnesty International (AI) are teaming up with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) to host the "first-ever" briefings on "reproductive rights" for the committees responsible for monitoring compliance with the Convention Against Torture (CAT) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR).
According to the CRR website, the briefing with the UN Committee against Torture (CAT) will focus on "reproductive rights violations" such "denial of reproductive healthcare services, including abortion and post-abortion care."
By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.
(NEW YORK – C-FAM) The campaign to insert abortion funding into maternal health initiatives has dominated the media coverage leading up to the 36th annual G8 Summit, which will be held in Huntsville, Canada in late June. The host government, Canada, has come under considerable criticism from the United States (US), the United Kingdom (UK), pro-abortion NGOs and the Canadian media for refusing to bring abortion into the debate.
Train a Child
- Tane began assisting Align Church on their sound desk with setup and PowerPoint presentations;
- Hamish is growing in confidence in his guitar playing. He has also recently conquered bicycling. This is huge. His dyslexia and dyspraxia made him especially clumsy. The fact that he is now able to concentrate and focus enough to ride a bike is an especially heart-warming chapter in all our lives, because it gets us closer to my goal of a family biking holiday. Tane is slightly annoyed that Hamish is more geared to be able to easily retain and recall knowledge he has seen and/or heard. Hamish usually gets Bible quizzes and other tests of comprehension right. We just remind Tane that he was blessed with more physical co-ordination.
- Aimee challenges me to find innovative ways to motivate/punish without smacking. Apparently (I am told that) yelling is not a viable alternative. Aimee talks non-stop; questions every command; is loud; messy; in short, precocious. She’s my little girl and I love her very much, but she’s just so different from the boys! Nobody can tell me that gender differences are purely societal. She was born with them. She’s not off the rails (yet), loves art, paints me colourful pictures of “I love you Daddy” so who can stay mad long? Not me.
Why I Am Pro-Israel
Dear Friend of Jerusalem,
Today, Wednesday, May 12 marks the 43rd anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem. It was in May of 1967 that Jews and Christians were finally able to return to the Holy City, after 19 years of exile. It was also the return of Jerusalem as the sovereign capital of the Jewish people after nearly 2,000 years.
Unfortunately, Jerusalem is once again facing barbarians at its gates. The Palestinians, under the leadership of Mahmoud Abbas and Salam Fayyad continue to attack the Jewish attachment to Jerusalem – continue to deny the emotional, religious and symbolic attachment of Jerusalem to the Jewish people.
We cannot let them succeed. The reason One Jerusalem was created is to make sure that truth prevails. It is our mission to give voice to the millions of people across the globe who know that the Palestinians are perpetrating a lie.
Not only do the Jewish people have ancient historic and religious ties to the Holy City of Jerusalem, but they have been the best custodians of the holy sites of other religions within Israel. Under Israeli government control, Christians, Jews and Muslims have all been allowed to visit their holy sites.
Can Abbas and Fayyad claim the same? Remember how the Palestinian mob destroyed the tomb of Joseph while the so-called Palestinian police stood by and watched? Remember how the Palestinians destroyed the Shalom Al Yisrael synagogue in Jericho?
It is critically important that we remember the destruction of all the Jewish synagogues, schools, and graves in Jerusalem — perpetrated by Arabs in 1948. We must never allow such atrocities to happen again. On Jerusalem Day, we ask you to reaffirm your commitment to Jerusalem.
Make sure all your friends and family know the truth – that Jerusalem must remain the united and undivided capital of the Land of Israel. Use this opportunity to remind President Obama of the difference between Arab and Jewish sovereignty in Jerusalem.
Tell Obama to keep his hands off Jerusalem. As always, we thank you for your continued support. It is only because of you that we are able to keep fighting for Jerusalem, the undivided capital of the Jewish State. Happy Jerusalem Day.
Allen Roth & David Goder
JESUS IS LORD OF LORDS
Current Age: 90
Truth………..from a man the media has never been able to throw dirt on…..amazing!
He has certainly hit the "world" on the head!
Billy Graham’s Prayer For Our Nation
THIS MAN SURE HAS A GOOD VIEW OF WHAT’S HAPPENING TO OUR COUNTRY!
‘Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to seek your direction and guidance.
We know Your Word says, ‘Woe to those who call evil good,’ but that is exactly what we have done.
We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values.
We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery.
We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare.
We have killed our unborn and called it choice.
We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable.
We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self esteem.
We have abused power and called it politics.
We have coveted our neighbor’s possessions and called it ambition.
We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression.
We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.
Search us, Oh God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin and Set us free. Amen!’
Commentator Paul Harvey aired this prayer on his radio program, ‘The Rest of the Story,’ and received a larger response to this program than any other he has ever aired. With the Lord’s help, may this prayer sweep over our nation and wholeheartedly become our desire so that we again can be called ‘One nation under God!’
Think about this: If you forward this prayer to everyone on your e-mail list, in less than 30 days it would be heard by the world. (It’s worth a try!) ‘One Nation Under God!
An Absolute MUST WATCH
The most beautiful seat belt advocacy commercial ever
A married couple in their early 60s were out celebrating their 35th wedding anniversary in a quiet, romantic little restaurant.
Suddenly, a tiny yet beautiful fairy appeared on their table and said, "For being such an exemplary married couple and for being faithful to each other for all this time, I will grant you each a wish."
"Ooh, I want to travel around the world with my darling husband" said the wife.
The fairy moved her magic stick and abracadabra!
.. two tickets for the new QM2 luxury liner appeared in her hands.
Now it was the husbands turn. He thought for a moment and said:
"Well .. this is all very romantic, but an opportunity like this only occurs once in a lifetime, so, I’m sorry my love, but my wish is to have a wife 30 years younger than me".
The wife and the fairy, were deeply disappointed ….
but a wish is a wish.
So, the fairy made a circle with her magic stick and ….
abracadabra! the husband became 92 years old.
The moral of this story..
Men might be ungrateful idiots,
But fairies are…
World Phone Survey by the UN
Last month a world-wide survey was conducted by the UN. The only question asked was:-
"Would you please give your honest opinion about solutions to the food shortage in the rest of the world?"
The survey was a huge failure because of the following:
- In Eastern Europe they didn’t know what "honest" meant.
- In Western Europe they didn’t know what "shortage" meant.
- In Africa they didn’t know what "food" meant.
- In China they didn’t know what "opinion" meant.
- In the Middle East they didn’t know what "solution" meant.
- In South America they didn’t know what "please" meant.
- In the USA they didn’t know what "the rest of the world" meant.
- In New Zealand they hung up as soon as they heard the Indian accent.
In this section, I highlight dates, times and venues of events either I am presenting at, or of interest to METTLE. I’m available for bookings.
The Pilgrim’s Progress
||The Pilgrim’s Progress
||From This World to That Which Is To Come
||Delivered Under the Similitude Of a Dream
Wherein Is Discovered
The Manner of His Setting Out, His Dangerous Journey And Safe Arrival At The Desired Country
Born at Elstow, near Bedford, in 1628, the son of a brazier. Service in the Civil War on the Parliamentary side. Became a preacher in 1657; and pastor of a congregation in Bedford, 1671. Intermittently imprisoned for unlicensed preaching from 1660 to 1672, and again in 1675. Died in London on 31st August 1688.
||First published 1678
Revised text with new Introduction and Notes 1954
Last reprinted 1964
Aldine Press, Letchworth, Herts, Great Britain
It is a masterpiece of religious allegory transformed into intense drama, its style unsurpassed, its characters superbly individualized, indelibly alive, and as memorable as the landmarks on Christian’s perilous journey toward salvation.
Since becoming a Christian from an atheist background in 1992, I’d heard a bit about this book, but I never knew that next to the Bible, it is the world’s most published book.
Coming from a Kiwi public education, I was somewhat familiar with Shakespeare, but never actually bothered to read any of the Bard’s works myself. (I liked Mel Gibson’s Hamlet.) So I was greatly intrigued by the grammatical style of this book. The words sounded the same, but were used in completely different patterns to what I am used to.
I loved the allegory. It greatly amuses me that the author felt the need to put an apology at the beginning of the book, because he knew there were Christians who equated fiction with lying.
I never knew this song that I learned at Nelson College (school assembly) came from this book:
Who would True valour see,
Let him come hither;
One here will constant be,
Come Wind, come Weather.
There’s no Discouragement
Shall make him once relent
His first avow’d intent
To be a Pilgrim.
Next month, I’ll review The Pilgrim’s Progress Part II, written 15 years later, about Christian’s wife Christiana’s journey. The two stories were both included in the one publication I read.
I really liked the imagery here (on page 62):
A more unequal match can hardly be:
Christian must fight an Angel; but you see
The Valiant Man by handling Sword and Shield,
Doth make him, though a Dragon, quit the field.
Soon, I will move this to the new Align Church website.
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