Aug 062017

Thank you for the feedback following the talk Cheryl and I gave in church last Sunday.  If you were not there and are interested, jump on St Philips Cottesloe website, press on the Podcast button and you can hear it.

We addressed 1 Peter 3, where Peter says, “Wives submit to your husbands.”  Of course Peter said much more than that and that text of all texts deserves a context, both culturally and for its place within the letter as a whole.

I particularly want to acknowledge and honour the journeys, bits of which have been shared with me, of some folk whose lives have been shaped negatively by the misuse of such texts.  I also want to thank the sharing men and women who have [and do] wrestle together in the shared responsibility of covenant relationship and continue to do the work of fitting in to one another out of reverence for Christ and each other.

And …. I want to mention the passionate warnings of one person who practises in this area and exhorted me to tell women, particularly, that if you think you are in danger, you ARE in danger.  And the only right thing to do is to call anyone who will provide immediate physical safety and get you and your kids out of where you are to that safe place.  My friend went on to say not to worry about things, perceptions, what will come next and so on.  Just get out.  All those things do, invariably, sort themselves out.

My friend explained that there are two support places in Perth that ‘get it’, and you, in that sort of situation and either will help or tell you what to do.  Those places are your local Magistrates Court [better than the police but if you are in imminent physical danger, call the police].  The second is the Women’s Legal Centre.

My friend warned that the first week after leaving is critical and these two resources should be at the top of the list in giving you specific action steps.

My friend also suggested that if someone approaches you saying they are afraid and need protection [even if you know the partner and the partner is a lovely person……blah, blah!], believe them and protect them!  In John 17:11,15 Jesus prays that his Father will protect the disciples.  Protection is so fundamental to wellbeing.  Jesus doesn’t question us, he protects us from all evil.  As confusing as it may seem at the time, be  protectors one of the other.

I have been quietly praying for protection as I pop off to hospital for surgery tomorrow morning.  I want to thank fellow travellers for the generous support, advice and sharing of geriatric toys that seem standard in orthopaedic recovery.  I am pleased to stand with the growing retinue of fellow cyborgs.  Aren’t we just incredibly fortunate to have access to such treatment and remedial care?

Please don’t visit me in hospital.  There are three agendas there – chop, physiotherapy and rest – then they kick you out.  Feel free to visit me at home but give me a week to get over the crisis phase.

It’s been lovely to see God’s gentle and mirthful hand in this.  Paul and Helen turned up at church  last week with an electric Gofer for sale and have lent it to me.  We have never had a Gofer turn up at church before!  Why, the week before I need one?  I’m not supposed to drive a car for six weeks but no one said anything about a Gofer!

Also, Cheryl has struck up a real friendship with a lovely Swiss woman who has been attending St Philips playgroup.  Her hubby is the surgeon who assists my surgeon.  We have had picnics together.  Who would have thought?

God is good . . .  all the time.  Prayers with you as you appropriate his love, truth, grace and presence.

James is the ‘boss’ for the next four weeks. 
If you need to, ask him.




Jul 232017 Play in new window | Download (Duration: 32:31 — 11.2MB)Subscribe: iTunes | Android | RSS | Why not subscribe?Readings: 1 Corinthians 10:23-33 1 Peter 2:11-18; 3:1, 7

Jul 162017

I woke up this morning absolutely exhausted after the sleep of a dead man.  Why was I feeling so tired? The day before I had taken a funeral.  One thing people do not realise when they watch the ‘pros’ do things like funerals is just how challenging we find them.  For me, it is not the grief necessarily, it is the difficult place I find myself in with nominal or secular families, longing that they might know the truth and [continue reading…]

Jul 092017

In the Bible all manner of sacrifices and offerings are recorded. In Scripture, the nature of a sacrifice or offering is normally a religious act belonging to worship in which a material offering is made to God.  Sometimes the item may be destroyed or consumed by the worshippers or given for redistribution for others.  Sacrifices and offerings can come with all manner of motives.  In the Old Testament many of them were to appease or atone for the sin and [continue reading…]

Jul 022017 Play in new window | Download (Duration: 33:10 — 11.4MB)Subscribe: iTunes | Android | RSS | Why not subscribe?Readings: Genesis 22:1-14 1 Peter 1:1-12

Jun 112017 Play in new window | Download (Duration: 32:51 — 11.3MB)Subscribe: iTunes | Android | RSS | Why not subscribe?Readings: Proverbs 31:1-9 Proverbs 31:10-31

Jun 042017 Play in new window | Download (Duration: 25:24 — 8.7MB)Subscribe: iTunes | Android | RSS | Why not subscribe?Readings: Proverbs 13:20-25 Proverbs 14:1-7

May 282017

Last Sunday I reflected on the wisdom of the men and women of the Midweek Communion community, the simple yet profound responses they gave to the questions, “How does Jesus impact your life day to day?”,  “What does knowing him actually do for you?” Their answers, you may recall, included three basic elements.  Firstly, they said, he is present to them.  As Jesus said in John’s gospel, “I know my sheep, my sheep hear my voice”. Secondly, having grown to [continue reading…]

May 212017 Play in new window | Download (Duration: 31:43 — 10.9MB)Subscribe: iTunes | Android | RSS | Why not subscribe?Readings: Proverbs 3:1-11 Hebrews 2:1-11