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Monthly Archives: February 2009

209 people died in Victoria, Australia last week. Our nation will stop today for a national day of mourning. We, as a nation, have given over $100 million to help those affected; we have given clothes, furniture, cars, food, heath care items, personal care items, kind words and prayer. We have heard all about it in the media for weeks, we have come together from all across Australia and formed a sense of community that didn’t seem to exist before.

Those responsible for lighting the fires that took those lives are sought after, many wanting to see them dead, or at least in jail for the rest of their lives.

209 die. Everyone stops and watches in terror. Even on the other side of the world, USA and UK and others send their condolences, expressing their shock, grief and kind words of encouragement. Even Pupa New Guinea gave $1 Million to help us rebuild and get our lives back to normal.

Every source of media is overfilled with the news, stories, photos, opinions and forecast of the happenings. The morning news has special broadcasts, extending it until lunch time, the nightly news is broadcast live from one of the refuge centers filling our homes with the screams of desperation as we watch as the survivors realise what and who they have lost.

Our newspapers debate what the consequence of arson causing multiple deaths should be. Photos of burnt homes, sad families, large groups of people with no homes, no jobs, lost family, no smiles and who could forget the image of the burnt koala taking water from a fire fighter, are printed on the pages reminding us of what is unfolding.

The internet has up to the minute updates of death tallies, maps of the fires, hotlines to help find lost loved ones, ways to give to those affected and blogs from all around the world offering kind words. Here is the story in brief. There are facebook groups, Twitter updates, myspace bulletions and forums all buzzing with kind words, and offers of help.

Our radios have been playing interviews with survivors each telling their own story of survival, songs dedicated to the lost, those who lost someone and the fire fighting heroes who looked death in the eye and fought it.

209 die in a week in Australia. We all stop. It is a tragedy that affects us all and will take months, even years to rebuild.

26 500 – 30 000* die EVERYDAY due to poverty. Yesterday about 27 000 children died. Today about 26 000 children died and tomorrow another 26 000 children will die.

Few stop. Few take notice.

No national day of mourning.
No media saturated with the faces of those who died.
No one really knows who died.
No survivors telling their story about how they beat hunger.
No tearful mothers sharing with the world the hopes and dreams her son had.
No buzz across the world as we stand together to fight this evil.
No one offering words of hope.
No $100 million given by Australians in a week.
No extended special edition morning news broadcast explaining how and why this happened.
No one is hunting for those responsible for the crisis in order to bring justice, as those responsible is us.

What will it take for us to care?

Are you offended?

Did reading this make you think, “How dare she…” or “How could she..”?

Are you, right now, trying to think of what you have given or done, to justify yourself?

What will it take?

How many lives have to be lost before we stand up and fight?

Let’s open our eyes..

and see what’s really happening…

Here is part of a song – Give me Your eyes – Brandon Heath…

Give me your eyes for just one second
Give me your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me your love for humanity
Give me your arms for the broken hearted
Ones that are far beyond my reach.
Give me your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me your eyes so I can see

and the bridge from Jon Foreman’s song, Instead of a Show…

give love to the ones who can’t love at all
give hope to the ones who got no hope at all
stand up for the ones who can’t stand up at all

*Stats from global issues

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I never really understood what “christian music” was/is. I don’t really get why there is such a divide between christian stuff and secular… books, movies, clothing even video games are labeled. Why do we feel the need to put everything into a little box with nice neat label…? It reminds me of all the mothers who buy those label making machines and go crazy labeling jars in the pantry, school books, boxes, food in the fridge, crates in the cupboard.. in order to organise everything.. I guess it stops them from losing stuff… or finding things in the wrong places so they always know exactly what to expect.

What makes music christian?

Is it music that is about God?

Do all the band members have to be christian?

Do any of the band members have to be christian?

What if the band members are christian but the song is about something other than God?

What if the band releases their album on the ‘mainstream’ market?

What if the band members are christian but they don’t openly announce to the world their current spiritual state?

Do christians have to like christian music?

Does listening to secular music make a person less a christian?

For a song to be about God/Jesus does the song need to use the words God or Jesus?

Jesus died on the cross to save people, not bands, not music… people, right?

It’s funny how we (Christians) can so easily point the finger and say “look at what he did!” and “How could anyone do that?” and “What was he thinking?!” and judge (subtlety of course)… but I was thinking about it on Saturday, (work was fairly quiet and I was in a deep thinking mood)… I was also thinking about other issues that Christians so quickly point the finger and “judge” on, such as abortion, porn, self harm, homosexuality, depression, substance abuse and crime…

We (Christians) seem to have the monopoly on what is ‘right’ and anything else is wrong. So often we seem to express our opinions by telling an expecting girl that abortion is murder, by telling a pornstar that what she is doing is wrong and disgraceful, by telling a young girl that sleeping around is dirty and desperate and the Bible says “No” and the consequences are eternity in hell. But who are we to come into their lives at that point? where were we (the church) when the young girl was looking for love in the wrong places? Did we show her that Jesus’ love is pure and more powerful and fulfilling than any boy she could hook in with? or were we too busy telling her the Bible says “NO” to sex b4 marriage?
Where were we (the church) when the young boy was looking for acceptance and started doing drugs? Were we there to show him that God accepts him no matter what the boy’s father may think or say to him? Were we there when he got beat up at school?
Where were we when a father looking for help with getting his life together, as his wife left him? Where were we when nothing he did seemed good enough? Where were we when he lost it and did an extreme act, which he will never forget as long as he lives, neither will his other kids, or his ex-wife? I hope rather than simply pointing a finger and saying “the bible says ‘thou shall NOT KILL’ How could you!?!” We are praying, praying for him, for his other kids, for his ex-wife, for his other family, for all parents who sometimes struggle and don’t know this awesome God that we have to help us out in tough times…

I guess the point I’m attempting to make is that we need to be there for people always, not just when things go really against what we would do… or when we get offended. We need to show people that Christ isn’t about a bunch of rules but rather love.