Spring 2019 :

News & Perspectives

things to think deeply about… have fruitful conversations and prayerfully dreaming together to find solutions … to then prophetically engage and network, working for the good with community, as God gives wisdom and leading

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The concept and reality of shalom denotes presence –

presence of joy, presence of hope, presence of wisdom, presence of God.

Speak and impart shalom:  “speak peace to this house” (Luke 10:5)

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Even a quick skim of the Bible makes this fact obvious: God loves to bless. He is a fountain of blessing. The word bless, in some derivation, occurs nearly 70 times in Genesis alone. Right from the start, God blesses what he makes. To bless is God’s first act toward humankind (see Genesis 1:22), and his sustained act throughout history….

Make your life an act of blessing. Choose to receive God’s extravagant blessing, and choose to pour it out extravagantly. Start now. How can you bless everyone in your family today – your wife, your children, your dog? How can you bless your neighbours and co-workers, your boss or employees? The mail lady? The cashier at [your local grocery store]?  And how can you teach your children to live that way?

Mark Buchanan, Chair Continuing Education and Pastoral Formation Associate Professor of Pastoral Theology, Ambrose University

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The digital age has great advantages. Through e-mails, texts, and tweets we can communicate quickly. The disadvantage is that it doesn’t cultivate in us a desire to think about things deeply. You can’t micowave personal growth; it requires a cockpot…. Take time to reflect.  

John C. Maxwell in How Successful People Think, 2009

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The power of the Bible

The power of the Bible for people like us living in times like these is that it shows us what it looks like to resist what needs to  be resisted and critique what needs to be critiqued while holding on to the conviction that there is a sacred mystery at the heart of every human.    Rob Bell

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There is an inherent quality in mankind that hopes for honesty in all people. They tend to give the benefit of doubt, and shrug off the suspicion that someone would deceive them. In their desire to accept well structured patterned information, subtle, hard-to-detect clues of manipulation escape thm until it is too late.   

Bud Allen & Diana Bosta in Games Criminals Play – how you can profit by knowing them, Rae John Publishers, 1981/2017

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Jesus has always been so much bigger than our ideas about him, our readiness to surrender to him, and our ability to love and allow what he clearly loves and allows in creation. He is the microcosm of the macrocosm. He is the Great Coincidence of Opposites as St. Bonaventure taught. Only the Jesus Paradox (i.e., Jesus being at once God and human) gives us the permission and freedom to finally and fully love the paradox that everything already and always will be….                                                                         If we are humble and honest, Christians must acknowledge that most of our churches and leaders have not consistently read the Gospels in a contemplative way or with “the mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians 2:16). Without contemplative consciousness, we severely limit the Holy Spirit’s capacity for inspiration and guidance….We are unable to comprehend that Christ is our wholeness (see 1 Corinthians 1:30)—set forth for all to imagine, trust, imitate, and comprehend. He is the Exemplar of Reconciled Humanity, the Stand-In for all of us.

excerpts from Richard Rohr, CAC The Jesus Paradox, 1.29.19

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We have some things to talk about ….

Trump is in the White House. Men are having sex with robots. Evangelicals are losing credibility. Kanye is going off. Vaping is harming our teens. The church is uninformed. Christians are losing confidence. Socialism is gaining popularity. Identity politics are king. Tech is exploding. Guns are up for grabs. Nationalism is spreading. Gen Z wants change. And being woke isn’t about your alarm clock.

I’d say we have a lot to talk about at Q2019, wouldn’t you?  Will you join me in Nashville April 24-26 [or on-line] as we discuss these pressing issues (and more)?

Gabe Lyons, qideas.org 1.23.19

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To cancer patients everywhere…. There is hope!

Tap into the power of prayer. Transform your moments of fear and hopelessness into a life filled with faith and hope and love. It’s here. Open your heart.

From the introduction of  Cancer & the Lord’s Prayer – Hope & Healing through history’s greatest prayer- , by Greg Anderson, Turning Point Communications, 2006, 2009

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Nimrod and Babel (Genesis 11)

What does this story tell us about what it means to be human?  We have tremendous power and ability as humans.We can invent things and build things and dream things up and then make them. It’s extraordinary, and it’s to be celebrated and enjoyed… We also have tremendous capacity to use our energies and minds and power and abilities to further our own purposes through greed and empire building at the expense of those around us, making the world less and less of a peaceful place where everyone is thriving…..This story here about the Tower of Babel has enduing power because of its reminder that we’re building the world. We’re creating something…. It’s a story, but it’s also a warning…. this tremendous capacity ….can also be used in destructive ways to oppress and dehumanize others.

Rob Bell in What is the Bible?

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In tough times we tend to pray “fix-it” prayers to somehow get ourselves back to what we remember as normal. But in these days of uncertainty, it’s the perfect time to pray “fulfill-it-all” prayers, crying out in hope for God to accomplish all that He has promised to do in the lives of others. As we pray, so shall we hope.

Steve Hawthorne, Waymakers in Seek God for the City 2019

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Preserving our private world -inner life

Amidst the busyness of society and pressures to obtain success, it can be easy to lose sight of what’s most important. Denver Seminary Chancellor Gordon MacDonald believes that preserving our private world is one of the greatest battles of the new century. His timely talk will urge us to take the inner life seriously, and then start living from the inside out.

from www.qideas.org/videos/our-inner-life/

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Therapy dogs to roam Pearson airport to relieve traveller’s stress

Therapy dogs are coming to Canada’s largest airport to help sooth stressed travellers. The Greater Toronto Airports Authority says 15 dog teams from the St. John’s Ambulance will be roaming terminals 1 and 3 at Pearson International Airport on a weekly rotation in an effort to relieve traveller’s tensions.

Excerpt from “with files from the Canadian Press “, The Epoch Times, Feb. 21-27, 2019