Monday, 31 January 2011

Noisy Plume

Sometimes when I rise in the morning,
I am so very aware that I'll only be this young today.

Fragile Graces, The Noisy Plume.

One of Fifi's favourite websites.

Friday, 28 January 2011

Scientific consensus and scholarly sheep

Think of this article, A Blot on Lincoln Historians as a parable, of sorts. For those who believe in scientific and scholarly consensus, it shows how easily it's possible to led and even misled by the zeitgeist.

The article begins:

These facts remain true: on April 14, 1864, President Abraham Lincoln sent a routine, one-sentence, handwritten order to Joseph Holt, the judge advocate general, pardoning a California soldier, Private Patrick Murphy, who had been sentenced to be shot for desertion. “This man is pardoned, and hereby ordered to be discharged from the service,” the president wrote.

The article concludes:

Shame on whoever tried to make of the Murphy order more than it is. And shame on all of us in the Lincoln studies profession for accepting it without question.

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Anyone want a sailboat?

UPDATE: The boat has gone to Sailability

I have a sailboat that about 10 years ago, for reasons best left in the dustbin of history, I decided to accept as a freebie from some very good friends and then never picked up or saw since.

The sailboat, like me, is older but no wiser, and is now available to anyone who would like to make a small donation to the Church Missionary Society. It's in Narrabeen (Sydney), it's about 1.4 metres wide and 3.5 metres long and could be lifted onto roofracks or into a trailer by 2 fit men. The mast is 4.7 metres long.

I am hoping to get photos of it up today or tomorrow, so watch this space. [UPDATE: Done!]

If you are interested you can contact me via facebook messages or via e-mail (ggordonc AT optusnetdotcomdotau).

Money or life

Mark Shead writes a website with blog called productivity501.

As far as I know he has no particular Christian concern, but in this post he talks about his decision to say no to a large amount of financial wealth, and why he did so.

From the post, his obvious (to Christians) conclusion:

A big bank account won’t provide the same amount of happiness you’ll get from spending time with the one person you decided you’d rather be with than anyone else. A bigger paycheck is poor compensation for missing out on raising your kids.

Mark's major concern, happiness, is not a bad one, and his chosen way of pursuing it makes sense. For Christians, happiness is not particularly important, but godliness is:

Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment

From here.

Incidentally, Mark Shead is the man who put me onto dropbox, which saves me the most inordinate amount of time and anxiety in my daily desire to stay organized and make sure I don't lose data. Click through and use, my friends!

Nicole's blog

Hot on the heels of yesterday's post where I linked to Nicole Starling's blog, I see that she has characterized her readers in this way:

Up till now, I have always done the blog with the assumption that I'm writing for a readership made up mainly of Christian women with young kids.

Oh well. I don't feel too embarrassed to reveal that I've always enjoyed it, and now I can rest secure in the knowledge that she says she'll

be trying a little bit harder to make things accessible and transparent for people who aren't (yet!) Christians or whose life situation is different from mine.

So who knows? A bit more on choral music, my favourite rock group, efficient use of space, or long distance running?

Only time will tell, but even if nothing changes, Nicole's blog is well worth subscribing to or following on facebook.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

School lunch season begins.

Matilda's back to school on Friday, Ruby and Lily Violet on Monday.

Found Lunchbox Treats—Twenty ideas for Wrap Fillings from a link on Nicole Starling's blog.

This year I have to get Matilda out the door by 7 am, so need to decide on whether lunch gets made earlier that morning, the night before, or on the Sunday before and then pulled out of the freezer.

Still inclined towards early morning, but perhaps I will experiment with Sundays. Thoughts welcome, here and on facebook.

Saturday, 8 January 2011

When Christians meet

I've taken on the job of thinking about what we do when we meet at 9 am every Sunday morning at church.

I've got a few ideas.

Our current format is that we start with a joke or friendly observation, end with a joke or friendly observation, have a very good sermon somewhere in the middle, and after the formal bit have morning tea.

I would like to keep everything pretty much as it is, except start with a bit of Bible, end with a bit of Bible, and reflect on all the bits inbetween. I have no problem whatsoever with friendly observations or jokes, and would like to encourage them to continue, as far as it lies in my power to do so.

Dear reader, please comment, I am away for about two weeks and will follow along with interest as I am able.

For those interested in vaccinations

Here's the rest.

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Better than resolutions

The right way to view New Year resolutions:

So, forget what lies behind, and then press on toward the goal. And any resolutions you make, make in the recognition that you are accepted and forgiven by God in Christ apart from any resolutions, and then seek to fulfill them in the power that God supplies (Colossians 1:29)

From Matt Perman.

Update: Resolutions? No! (from the Desiring God blog)