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Showing posts from June, 2009

NZ's Most Trusted

I watched with interest the TV One news story the other day on Breakfast where they announced who the most trusted New Zealanders were. I heard that Willie Apiata had won and that the majority of the top ten were sportspeople. This set me off. I thought, what? What does this say about our values? We value sport more than anything. A guy who does a great feat in a war is someone that people trust. I thought, trust in what sense? In a war, yes, Willie is the man. Or is he? I don't know him. He might have just been the man of a moment and really the rest of the time who knows? But, should I trust him with my money? With my kids? With a secret I don't want anyone else to know? Mmmmm.

The Evers-Swindell twins came in 2nd/3rd. Now they are great athletes, they appear to be lovely girls. But, are they to be trusted? I have no idea. How is it that John Kirwan makes it on. He was despised in his day as an arrogant Auckland tosser. I played against him, and that description was no comple…

When is a killing murder?

What the heck! How is it that you can go around to your former girl friend with a knife, stab her mercilessly 216x.

Clayton Robert Weatherston is on trial for allegedly doing this to Sophie Elliot in Dunedin in 2008. Supposedly he stabbed her 216 times with the knife. She had stab wounds to both eyes, her genitals, breasts, left cheek, left temple, left ear, the left side of the neck and 45 stab wounds to the front of her throat. He cut off the tip of her nose! That is utterly disgusting and my heart goes out to her and her family for what they have gone through.

He admits he killed her but claims 'partial defence of provocation' and claims it is manslaughter. Apparently he admited the killing immediately in a calm tone. Allegedly he told the office he killed her and mutilated her for 'the emotional pain that she has caused me over the past year.' It is alleged that he believed she had cost him a chance at a permanent lecturer's position at Otago University.

Supposedl…

Open Entry for Maori to Uni?

I see Pita Sharples is advocating that Maori should get open entry into university (http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10579221). Now, I am fully committed to seeing all NZers become well educated and am deeply concerned at the educational progress of Maori who consistently underachieve as compared with other ethnic groups. However, this can only be described as daft! Universities stand on their international reputation. We simply can't drop standards to let people in, no matter what their ethnicity. I am not sure that this would help anyway except in a few cases. Most who come in through the back door will not have the necessary academic ability to get through. It will lead to a deeper sense of failure and be counterproductive. I am sure there will be the odd student who would make it through this process. However, they have other ways they can do this. They can go back to school as a mature student or enrol in night classes etc. There are other pat…

Money, money, money!

Have you read this: http://www.philstar.com/Article.aspx?articleId=476585&publicationSubCategoryId=200. It is about a daughter who thought she would be nice to her mum. She thought she would buy her a new matress and get rid of her old one. She did so. The only problem was is that Mum had $160m stuffed in the mattress. This is a great illustration of how a good deed can go wrong. Last I heard they were searching for the mattress and money at the dump! Haven't heard whether she got her money back.

Then there is the latest news that Ronaldo has been sold by Man United for $205m NZ: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/sport/news/article.cfm?c_id=4&objectid=10577962. Ridiculous! We are in a global recession and this sort of nonsense is going on. What is the place of sport in our culture? It has got out of kilter. Sport is great to develop character, let off steam, enjoy our createdness, learn values and provide relief from the struggles of life. Yet, here it is totallyout of balance. No…

Technology and Community

I am intrigued by what is happening in the world as a result of technology. Last night I was sitting in my home in Auckland NZ and simultaneously was talking to the coach of my daughters Johnny B at Kaukapakapa about 60k's NE in the country on the land line; was chatting through Skype to Esther in Bristol, England; was talking to my daughter Gracie on MSN in Remuera across the city; and chatting on Facebook to my young nephews Sean and Tom at Brown's Bay about 10k away! My wife was in the next room talking to Gracie simultaneously!

Interestingly, I am as much up with my daughter Esther's life in Bristol on this trip as I was when she was home. There is no tactile contact, no hugs, no visuals (although we can use video link ups) and much is internet chatting by text.

Yet, there is a real sense of community with all this. What does it mean to be 'we' in this world? So much now is experienced visually through the box and the net, and by text on cell phones and chat opti…

Singing to the Lord 2; Another Response

I put this in as a comment, but it was too long. Here is another response George.

I agree with you. I don't think it is meant to work though either, if we are open to unbelievers, we will serve them including providing them with words and understanding of whatever we do. I think we all spend too much time worrying about what other people are doing in worship though. The only person on planet earth I can control and ensure isn't singing glibly or whatever, is me. Having said that, you are most certainly right. But, the solution to me is ensuring I am not one of these.
Hype is a problem for sure too. Again, I prefer to look past this and humour them. I will be hyped as I feel I should be authentically and in the Lord.
I understand on emotion. In many cases it is a bloke thing too, we tend to resist emotion. That is what makes us blokes I suppose. But Jesus was not amiss to shedding a few tears and accepting the most outrageously emotional worship (esp. Lk 7). I note there too that …

Singing to the Lord

I have just been to the gym and as I sat on the erg pulling away I was listening to Hillsong. Yes, Hillsong. In my circle of the faith, some people hear that name and smile appreciatively because of their love for Hillsong and their music. Others reach for a bucket, their grimaces betrayed their deep abhorrence of their music and all things Hillsong.

I do have some problems with Hillsong. Their theology is over-realised to a large degree. They sing of the already of the Kingdom too much and do not take much cognicance of the 'not yet.' Thematically, they miss out a lot of themes which are important such as repentance, prayer, seeking forgiveness, unity, dimensions of mission etc. Their songs tend to be generic, pop worship has to be, to gain the largest market. Yet, aside from this imbalance, their music to me is astonishing.

My concern in this blog is not Hillsong, but the reaction against singing among many Christians today. I understand it. The way we sing is a problem, with …