Monday, February 15, 2010

Written on my Tombstone....

Was reading a book on church planting that was trying to encourage the reader to think about vision and values by thinking about what you may want written on your tombstone... your epitaph. This is what first came to my mind at 2am...

Brent lived life to the full. …But it wasn’t just for himself. His life centered around others and God, that’s what made it full.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

USA vs New Zealand Round 1: National Anthems

I read an article analyzing different countries' national anthems awhile ago that looked at the countries' values and worldview based on the national anthem. I thought it was a stretch, but more recently i was trying to memorize the New Zealand national anthem and thought to myself... So true about NZ! So here is to analyzing for the sake of analyzing :)

National Anthems
US: Celebrating the victory of the brave through their struggle for freedom of "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" (Declaration of Independence)
NZ: Plea for God’s defense of unity through love instead of strife and war

US: Unity through struggle for life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness
NZ: Unity through meeting in the bonds of love

US: Praise through triumph of strife and war
NZ: Praise through lack of strife and war

NZ’s anthem mentions God. (and NZ is more popularly classified as secular nation)
US’s anthem doesn’t mention God (and US is more popularly classified as a Christian nation)

Both seem to have a danger:
USA: Danger of Victory without God (God is not mentioned but assumed)
NZ: Danger of Not needing God for victory (God is mentioned but not always assumed)

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Last 2 Month Update

Story of the Month:

I picked up one of the ATC Trainme guys on my way to church Sunday morning at 9am. Turns out he was just walking home from a party the night before. Some of the teens lives that I watch baffle me. It turned out that none of the ATC guys i am working with went to camp, but we will start mentoring again once school starts up in February.

Last 2 Months-

Ignite- The Wesleyan summer youth camp happened Jan 8-11. It was our largest camp yet, it went smooth, and you could see teens hearts stirred especially towards missions. Starting with a youth group from scratch Paul and I prayed for 10 students to be involved with Ignite the previous year. It didn’t happen then, but I recently realized that over the past two camps we have been involved in getting 10 teens to camp, which was a cool answer to prayer starting from scratch 2 years ago.

Visitors- I have had a lot of visitors through this summer, which has also been a fun way to involve others in good conversations and enjoying New Zealand. I believe that one road trip last year was especially significant in connecting newer people to others and the church so I don’t ever count out these opportunities together.

ChristChurch- After prayerfully visiting Christchurch for a few days a few months back, I still don’t know what will come of the church planting idea here. As of now though I am planning on going through a church planting assessment over here in late February which will be interesting to see whether my giftings align with a church planting career path at all or not.

Thank You: Thank you to those who sent me presents and cards during this season. It is always such an encouragement and so good to hear from you.

"for though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again..."Proverbs 24:16a