Putting Rudd into Context

In light of our Prime Minister’s recent words regarding his position on the Bible, many issues that have been in heated debate over the course of this year still continue to be in debate; and it would probably be a good idea to put Rudd’s statements in the context of the bigger picture. His words on the ABC program “Q&A” (or QandA) has shocked both Christians and non-Christians for different reasons and brings forth mixed feelings and reactions. On one hand you would have Christians (such as myself) appalled at the Prime Minister’s poor handling of Scripture, and on the other hand you would have non-Christians give a round of applause in approval of his adaptation of the Bible into modern society.

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The Counter Break – Epilogue

It has been four years since I started this “chapter” of my life. The first post I made for this blog will give the context as to where my life was back then. And four years later today, I can now make a comparison and review how far I’ve in that time. Things are somewhat drastically different comparing where I am now and where I was four years ago. God has brought me much farther than I could have imagined all those years ago; and it only makes sense that I reflect and recognise what God has done in my life – that you the readers may be encouraged by my life, and also that I may work out how I should be moving forward.

There are many things that I need to be grateful for, and many things that I would never have imagined I would be doing today. And there are of course struggles that I still face. These are all to show that living and growing as a Christian includes reflecting on the past and also thinking hard about the future. Let’s start with the most broad heading and then I’ll proceed to smaller matters.

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The Beginning to an End

Perhaps now would be more or less a good time to reflect on my ministries for this year. Of all the things that will change from this year to the next, it’ll be my ministries (and relationships stemming from them) that will be tossed around the most. It saddens me to be stepping out of a lot of people’s lives in terms of the responsibility I was given to help them grow as Christians and such. How “effective” you are as a leader can probably be evaluated by how attached you are to the people under your care, and how much they were to you. Of course I wouldn’t be lying when I say that there were groups of people I wasn’t as attached to as others, and at that fact to not be attached in a way that suggests I was a “fair” encouragement to them. But sometimes this cannot be helped – not all relationships move smoothly as one may desire, and that may not be a fault from either party; that’s just the dynamics of relationships and ministry.

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The Backup Plan

Haven’t blogged in a while, and I need to find a way to procrastinate. This came to mind a long time back but the thoughts are clear in my head, so now would be a good time to put them down on digital paper. Consider this:

 

When we think of the idea of a backup plan, or plan B (in case of two plans, maybe the B is for “backup”?), we think of some sort of some counter measure that will help solve our problem, or reach our goal, in case our first action, plan A, fails. Of course what we really would like is that our first idea, plan A, succeeds. But of course to cover as many bases as we can, we account for possibilities that our plan A fails in which we come up with subsequent strategies that will ensure our goal is met. This is generally smart thinking. If our first plan will potentially fail to some contingent event in the future, then we’ll think one step ahead and see how we can work around such a contingent event. I don’t think I need to go too far into the matter. We do this for many things in our daily lives; like travelling to other places, organising social events, timetable preferences, university selection, etc.

 

However, what I propose is that our plan B doesn’t serve that purpose on most occasions. As we get smarter and wiser by learning from experience, we tend to come up with plan A’s that normally have a high rate of success. On most days, CityRail will get you to your destination. For socials, we’ll pick days where we’re quite certain that it won’t rain. And for high school youth, they normally can guess their ATAR and put the course they think they can get into as first preference. But even so, we all still have our plan B in case things go wrong. It’s like some sort of insurance; but on that note, since I do Actuarial Studies, life insurance really isn’t really worth it until at late ages when you know you’re more prone to dying than your average chance of  “whoops I got run over by a car” death. So in terms of life insurance, if you call that your plan B, you won’t really need it. It rarely comes into “play” and what you lose in exchange of coming up with a plan B is just the time and energy to think through all the “what ifs”.

 

What I propose is that our plan B’s, since we always come up with them anyway, serve rather as our reassurance if things go wrong, but our expectations is that our plan A will be just fine. What I think is that we’re relatively confident that our plan A will work out fine, but since we’re always going to have some sort of paranoia and fear that things will turn for the worse, our plan B will help us to not feel unconfident. Using an army as an example (whatever the era), as a foot soldier you feel confident knowing that your commander or general is there behind you, but you won’t expect him to have to charge into battle. What’s worse, if you lose your general, your “failsafe” plan B, then you lose a lot of confidence, because now you have no backup plan.

 

So maybe, we come up with backup plans for the sake of having them, and the psychological comfort it gives us. But in reality, we normally don’t expect to use it, and more often than not we don’t end up having to either. But it’s interesting that we sometimes don’t feel secure without them. Anyway just my two cents.