Monday, October 15, 2012


Many of you are poor starving students so you will understand poverty - though it is relative to our own section of this world, of course.

I'll get to my main point to you first up - so you know where I'm heading with this: 
You might be 'poor' now - but when you are financially in a better place - please do not forget the poor in our society and in the world at large.

I was listening to J K Rowling talking about her few years as a single mum in relative poverty. Obviously, now, she has no trouble paying her bills but she can still recall easily the shock of being an educated woman suddenly finding herself in a hopeless financial situation.

Personally, I've had my occasional share of relative poverty over the years also. A low point for me was being stuck in a housing trust maisonette with my wife, a young child and a baby. Our neighbours were abusive and violent. The walls were thin. The police were constantly being called out. The whole street was a squirming cesspool of moneyless hopelessness.

There is a domino effect in not having money. I needed to write out a resume to look for work. I couldn't afford ink for my computer printer, so I had to go to the library to book a computer and find coins to pay for the paper. I called the library, the computers were booked out, so I had to wait and come back a few hours later to use a computer. While I was updating my resume the teenagers next to me were looking up questionable sites and laughing - making it hard to concentrate. Eventually after buying the smallest pack of envelopes in the store and buying a single stamp - I'd send it off to a prospective employer. Hoping and praying to get more work to earn more money. This scenario was repeated. This is only -one- example.
Today,  I'll open up a document on my computer and print it out buy a handful of stamps and a larger pack of envelopes and send it off while I'm down at the store for something else. Time wise what once took me pretty well the whole day - I can do in 15 minutes. If you have always had cash-at-hand, it is hard to understand the daily terrible stress and trauma that lack of money brings. No one is to blame for 'having' or 'not having', that's certainly not my point - my point is, 'listen' to those who are poor - what are they saying? Hear their voice.

Also, let's stay away from talk about 'it's their choice' - those who choose poverty would be in the absolute minority. Most sane people do not choose to be in poverty.

I haven't mentioned the stress of trying to keep a car on the road when it finally gives up the ghost - you have to 'bus' it everywhere which takes an hour or two when it would usually take 20 minutes. You can't buy mulit-trips because it eats into the food money. You can't borrow money because you can't actually pay it back. This is all just the tip of the iceberg.

Money doesn't make you happy - but the lack of money brings terrible suffering. When you find yourself in a healthy financial position - don't forget the poor.  If you can, help them to get out of poverty but even more important, help them to get out and stay out. Then finally, help them to be able to help other people.

 "He who is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will  reward him for what he has done".
Proverbs 19:17

"Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me." Matthew 25:40

" My friends, if you have faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, you won’t treat some people better than others. Suppose a rich person wearing fancy clothes and a gold ring comes to one of your meetings. And suppose a poor person dressed in worn-out clothes also comes. You must not give the best seat to the one in fancy clothes and tell the one who is poor to stand at the side or sit on the floor. That is the same as saying that some people are better than others, and you would be acting like a crooked judge.
My dear friends, pay attention. God has given a lot of faith to the poor people in this world. He has also promised them a share in his kingdom that he will give to everyone who loves him. You mistreat the poor. But isn’t it the rich who boss you around and drag you off to court? Aren’t they the ones who make fun of your Lord?
You will do all right, if you obey the most important law in the Scriptures. It is the law that commands us to love others as much as we love ourselves." James 2

God be with you and help you to be prosperous. May God give you a heart that cheerfully and generously lifts up those who can't help themselves. May God bless you! 

Finally: "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich." 2 Corinthians 8:9

Monday, October 8, 2012

One night stands

You've discovered that you've got 'mojo' and out of the corner of your eye, you catch good looking strangers taking a second look at you. You are well above the legal age of consent, so you can take advantage of your new freedom.  One night stands are part of our culture and anyway, YOLO.

'One night stands' are acceptable in many quarters of our side of the world. I can't tell people who don't subscribe to the Christian faith how to live their lives but I can invite them - and invite you - to consider a few factors about the whole thing. I don't like or advocate 'one night stands'.

 I'm aware that to there are people who for recreation like getting  themselves hooked up after a night at the club with someone sweet/hot/cool/handsome/pretty for the night. Maybe it's the highlight of the week and something to talk about with your buddies from Sunday to Friday. I'm aware that on the whole 'no one is getting hurt' and that it is by 'mutual consent' or that it beats the mundane lows and loneliness of life for a short time.

My main problem is that a one night stand is really an exercise in mutual selfishness.

Don't believe me? Let's test it. (I'll say 'you' but these are general)

  • Did you have to get intoxicated/stoned to spend time with this person? If so why? Would you have gone home with them if you had met them somewhere else? If not, then what was your goal that night? Be honest it about them...or you?
  • Are you willing to look after and/or care for this person if they suddenly came down with the flu, or had a car accident? If not why not? 
  • Do you know and agree with this person's intellectual and spiritual beliefs? If you don't know - then have you thought about the effect this sort of intimacy has on your own spirit/intellect?
  • Do you know if this person is 'safe'? Do you know their background? Do you actually really - know - who you are being intimate with?
I could go on...not to mention the wonderful diseases that you can pick up...that pregnancy does contraception is 100% sure...but maybe I'll stop there!

My personal view is to get to know a person intellectually and spiritually first and learn how to care and support each other along the way.  It's  a big topic but I want to encourage you to think about it.

If you are a Christian and 'do' one night stands, then you may have to find chapters or passages in the Bible to support your actions -  because I don't see any in my own Bible.

Instead there are many passages about looking after other people and not being selfish.

1 Thessalonians 4:3-4 – “It is God's will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable” 

1 Corinthians 10:13 – “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”

1 Corinthians 6:13 – “The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.” 

Genesis 1: 27-28 – “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number;” 

Genesis 2:24 – “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.” 

1 Corinthians 7:2-3 – “But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband.” 

Hebrews 13:4 – “Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.”


"God is faithful and reliable. If we confess our sins, he forgives them and cleanses us from everything we've done wrong." 1 John 1:9

"For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God." (1 Peter 3:18a)

"In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace." (Ephesians 1:7)

Also see John 8:1-11

How do we live our life?

"Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ, God forgave you." (Ephesians 4:32)

If you want other Christians ideas, I'd probably go along with a lot or most of what this author says too: