Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Coping with Non-Cooperation

Growing up in church, we heard a fair bit of teaching about how to carry-out one's vision, gifts and destiny.

But most of the teaching was with the assumption that we would always have a near-perfect mutual relationship with our church.

Our Pastor would always recognise our talents, and give us full space to express them...

It's like the only thing we needed to do was discover our gifts - because once we discovered our calling we would always have the full co-operation of our church to see our vision implemented. Wonderful.

Perhaps the only other thought that might have sometimes crossed our minds, was the thought that some unfortunate people - in other churches of course, not in our church - in a worse-case scenario might have to leave their church, but only to immediately join a different church - like ours - where their God-given vision would then receive 100% co-operation.

We weren't really equipped in advance with the knowledge of what to do in the event that we don't actually find that 100% co-operation all of the time!

But then reality starts to set in: and let's face it - that's probably one of the main reasons people get discouraged and discard their vision, isn't it? Not for lack of desire. Not even just because of sin. But not feeling cooperated with.

Understanding our gifts and calling is the easy part, really. But you're not going to get very far if you don't know how to respond when you encounter non-cooperation.

What are you going to do? with your gifts and calling, your vision. Unfortunately, since many haven't been taught much from the Bible about how to respond, they're left to respond the best they can, and usually they respond out of their own personality.

And it's usually somewhere between put up with it, or leave. With a fair bit of fed-up in-between. And often with some other traits too depending on one's background style.

But what should we do? What are the godly, spiritual, Biblical principles. Because very often it's how we respond at that point - and how we continue responding - that makes or breaks our destiny.

So that's where we need to be equipped in advance with a knowledge of some procedures to follow. Prepared for the inevitable event that we encounter some non-cooperation. (Along with all the inspiring stuff, about discovering your gift and calling and having a vision.)

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Co-operating with Incooperation

You're not always going to be able to just see everything done the way you'd like.

Noah preached righteousness, but only eight souls were saved.

Joseph dreamed of his brothers bowing down to him, but first he was sold into slavery.

Moses accepted the call to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt, but Pharaoh hardened his heart.

Joshua was eager to enter the promised land - he knew it was do-able - but he had to spend another 40 years in the wilderness, through no fault of his own.

David was told he'd be king, but had to run for his life and hide in a cave, for years.

The Prophets were persecuted.

Many times Jesus wanted to gather Jerusalem like a hen gathers her chicks, but they weren't willing.

Jesus warned the disciples to expect persecution.

We have a lot of teaching in churches about our gifts and calling and vision. But most of the teaching assumes a perfect scenario where your own church or denomination is going to fully co-operate with you and facilitate what you know is possible for your life, for meetings, for a church, for the move of God. But you aren't always going to see everyone doing what you want them to do. How you cope with that is therefore important.

Expect it. Don't be offended when it happens.

The main thing you can perfect, is your relationship with God. But you can't control others.

Politicians have to learn this. Maybe when they were a businessman they could do what they wanted, and their employees would obey them. But in politics he has to get voted-in in the first place. Then he can't just do all he wants. Congress might not vote in favour. A Judge might rule against his actions. Politics is an art of working with the co-operation you get. We have to learn that too, in Christian ministry. Christian ministry is not like being a mafia boss where the 'family' just does your every whim and wish.

Really, we have to have something else which satisfies our soul. And that can only be our own personal relationship with God. Ministry is not about self-actualisation. Find your fulfilment in God alone. Ministry is about loving others, with all their incooperativeness at times. Get your fill from Him. Find your peace and contentment in Him. And in His will. Then serve others out of that fulness. Your sense of fulness shouldn't depend on seeing others do all you'd like. You can rejoice to see it - but if you don't see it, you are still full.

The fruit of the Spirit is longsuffering - with joyfulness.

Joyful in tribulation.


In meekness instructing others.

Wait your opportunity.

Go where He tells you to go.  

And in all this, God will bring to pass what He said of you. 

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Mark 16:9-20

On the text of Mark. Almost everything stated in the passage in question, is mentioned elsewhere in the NT. 

So even if you reject the originality of that part of Mark, you still have to accept the ideas - because the rest of the Bible talks about it. 

Details like going out and preaching the Gospel. Baptising believers. Speaking in tongues. Casting out demons. Healing the sick. Being unharmed if you happen to pick up a snake. Signs and wonders following the preaching of the word. All of that and more can be found demonstrated, and taught, elsewhere in the NT - in the Book of Acts, and in the Epistles. 

At the mouth of two or three witnesses, let every word be established. 

Besides, the story of Mark would seem to have an odd ending, if verses 9-20 are omitted from the final chapter. The verses are a fitting part of it.

The idea that the passage mightn't have been original has wained somewhat in its 'scholarly' popularity anyway, since its peak popularity in the anti-charismatic decade last century. It's by no means been a foregone conclusion. 

Besides, if you apply the same criterion to the rest of the Bible that you use to reject that part of Mark, you would also have to reject so many other verses and passages - and even at least one entire book of the New Testament, some say. But you didn't hear that bandied around much, because it wouldn't have been acceptable to the wider evangelical community nor even to Catholics, and because it wasn't quite so anti-charismatic. 

The earlier Church widely accepted the entirety of Mark as genuine and authoritative. To reject it now, involves using our own criteria, and claiming that it's superior to theirs - yet they were closer (in history) to the fact (and to the author) than us. 

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Come As You Are

I read somewhere where a minister wrote a defence of some action he's recently taken, with the preface that this would be his last word on it.

And I thought, Doesn't the fact that he wants this to be his last word on something, make it suspect? Because when what we do is good, we won't want to hide it under a bushel - we'll want to let our light shine, that all may see our good works, and glorify our Father in heaven.

If we've found godly freedom, we'll always want to be ready to give a reason for the hope that is in us.

We'll always be delighted for another opportunity to tell the liberating truth of the Gospel.

Always happy to provide things honestly in the sight of all men.

We'll never wish that we'll never have to talk about something again!

We should be happy for our actions to always be in the light - because it shows that our action was taken in God.

The wish to keep a matter out of the open, means it probably wasn't done in God.

He's on a defensive foot - rather than lovingly outreaching with truth.

Basically, he wants the discussion censored.

If someone has a different conscience to his, he's not allowing them to make it an issue for him anymore - nor for his ministry, nor for his church, nor for anyone else within his sphere of influence. He wants them to keep it to himself, from now on.

But that's now how conscience works, and he should know that. When someone has misgivings about something, he can't only have misgivings about himself doing it - he also has misgivings about anyone doing it.

If something is wrong for him, it's wrong for you too. He wouldn't only grieve if he did it - he also grieves if you do it. Not only does he wish to be preserved from it, he also wishes to save you from it. He also wishes to protect others from coming under your influence to do it. He can't help it - that's how conscience works. Conscience creates obligation - not only to oneself, but to others.

We're called to walk in love. Love doesn't only have regard for one's own conscience - but also for the consciences of others. Love would rather refrain from doing something than to offend our brother.

Nowadays churches are eager to tell people "come as you are". Their desire is that churches become safe-spaces for people who are still coming to terms with issues, issues like addiction, sexuality, and theology.

But what if your issue is that you still believe what your very same church taught you about something, just a few years ago?

Maybe even the minister who wrote this article, believed the same way they do, just a few years ago. So isn't it a bit quick for him to demonise others who still believe as he himself likely believed just a few years ago?

People need a bit more time than that. If someone needs some time, before they're ready to completely reject something their own church taught them just a few years ago, is it really fair just to demonise them for that? Label them judgmental. Religious. Divisive. Pedantic. Shut down all future discussion about it.

What about giving them some space instead. Isn't that love?

Love should be our first consideration, not our own rights - even if we are right and others are unnecessarily conscientious about something.

But the problem is: taking that approach would highlight to him that it would have been better had he not gone and done what he's done.

And that's awkward for him: because it requires considering others rather than just doing what his flesh wanted.

So rather than accept responsibility for the impact of his actions on others - it's easier to blame others for any continuing issues caused by his actions.

He probably doesn't really want to blame others either though: so the only solution is to shut it down.

The only way to really shut it down though, would be for him to refrain from doing it. Because others can't deny their consciences. But he wants to keep doing it. So all he can do is blame others for feeling the way they do, then maybe the issue will go away.

But it isn't really reasonable to expect that every church member immediately rejects what their own church taught them just a few years ago. Human beings aren't all that quick. Demanding it doesn't communicate love. And love should be the goal.

And then after all that, there's still the question of whether the action itself is right or wrong. 

Monday, 20 March 2017

Continuationism v Cessationism

I think many cessationists seem to have a misconception about the role spiritual gifts had in the early Church.
Spiritual gifts never were used in the first place as the original basis of New Testament doctrine.
Spiritual gifts never were the primary source of New Testament revelation.
The Apostles' doctrine didn't originate solely from spiritual gifts.
The Gospels and Epistles weren't written by the Apostles transcribing someone's prophesying or someone's interpretation of tongues.
Even in New Testament times, prophecies had to be judged (see I Corinthians 14:29).
Judged against what? Against the already-established doctrine of the Apostles.
And where did the Apostles get their doctrine from? From the Lord Jesus Christ Himself of course! Having been with Him in person, having seen Him, touched Him and heard Him (see I John 1:1).
Signs 'followed' the word and 'confirmed' the word - they never were the primary source of the apostles' word (see Mark 16:20).
Many could prophesy and see visions, including sons and daughters and household helpers (see Joel 2:28-32, Acts 2:15-21) - potentially anyone could prophesy (see I Corinthians 14:24,31) - but the doctrinal foundation of the Church was never established by depending solely on incidences of the gift of prophecy being expressed.
Prophesying served simply to edify, exhort, comfort, instruct, guide and reveal - but only in 'confirmation' of the Gospel - signs and wonders only 'followed' the proclamation of the Gospel. Because the Church was built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, with Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone!
So when continuationists say sign-gifts continue today, most of them don't mean that prophecy today automatically carries the same authority as the Apostles, nor that the canon of Scripture isn't already closed, nor that new doctrines not spoken of in the Bible can be promoted today. Because prophecies never had quite that unquestionable status, not even in the early Church.
Most continuationists just mean that the Holy Spirit still chooses to confirm the Word of God today in the same ways He confirmed it in the early Church. He still ministers to the Church today through all of the same means as in the early Church.
Think about it: cessationism actually requires extra-apostolic interpretation, not continuationism. Because continuationism takes precisely the same stance on spiritual gifts as the New Testament, whereas cessationism views, interprets, differentiates and applies the topic of spiritual gifts from a post New Testament position:

"...prophecies, they shall fail [not, have failed]; whether there be tongues, they shall cease [not, have ceased]..." ( Cor.13:8).

The foundation was already laid. Ever since, there's only one Church, one Gospel - not two different modus operandi.

"Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, and to day and forever" (Hebrews 13:8).

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Comparisons of Praise & Worship

Praise and Worship in Charismatic Renewal Days (     - late 1980s)

People were eager to arrive early. The congregation began singing spontaneously, song after song, before the service began.

When the song-leader rose to the platform to officially begin the meeting, the song-service was buoyed along by the bursting enthusiasm in the congregation itself.

People danced. Clapped hands. You could hear the congregation singing above the sound of the band.

At some point there would always be congregational singing in the spirit. The congregation responded to the Spirit as one man.The sound ebbed and flowed, rising to a crescendo and back to sweet worshipful strains, in one or more cycles.

The singing in the spirit would give birth to someone singing a spontaneous new song with their understanding, and the band would follow along. Then the whole congregation would pick up the song.

Prophecies would come. Or tongues, and interpretation. That was the peak. Every week brought a unique experience.

Sometimes a Pastor would invite people forward for the laying on of hands. But usually, the gifts of the Spirit that flowed from the congregation after a time of singing in the Spirit, was the high point of the praise and worship.

The lyrics and melodies were appropriate, likeable and memorable. People sang with eyes closed, hands upraised. The songs could easily be sung by heart, at home, on the beach, in the car, away from the band and overhead projectors.

Occasionally a good old hymn would also be sung.

We sometimes had someone minister to the congregation with a special number.

Worship was an experience, orchestrated by the Holy Spirit. We believed that God was present and enthroned on the praises of His people.

Our only beef was that the announcements often got in the way of things the Spirit was beginning to do in a service. I had a sense that there was more, that we were still falling short. We had a vision of a coming day when the manifestations of the Spirit would go to another level in our gatherings.

In many charismatic gatherings, those with Latter Rain Movement undertones, the worship was modelled on the concept that worship in David's tabernacle was likely sometimes spontaneous.

Musicians were often off to the side, as much as possible part of the congregation rather than spread out in front of the church across the whole stage.

Sunday meetings typically lasted around 90 minutes.

You never wanted to miss a service, in case that was the Sunday the long awaited move of the Spirit I was still waiting for broke out.

There was great Bible-teaching. And evangelism. And missions.

The Contemporary Church Movement (late 1980s - ) 

But not all Pentecostals embraced the Charismatic Movement, or the Latter Rain Movement before it. Some second-generation Pentecostals of one particular denomination instead started a youth movement, in which music was modelled more on the secular rock concert than on Latter Rain concepts about David's tabernacle.

It was a deliberate strategy of reaching unchurched youth. Many got saved. It was a good outlet, while it was fuelled by participants who'd also been experiencing the charismatic movement.

In time the leaders of the youth movement became the Senior Pastors of the churches, and then members of the executive. Pretty soon the Sunday services of their churches all across the nation came to be run like their youth rallies. And this style of service eventually came to be adopted by charismatic churches on Sundays too.

Typically the music is loud. The congregation can't be heard singing. There's little to no spontaneity. Singing in the spirit doesn't usually happen. There isn't much expression of the Spirit. The lyrics and melodies aren't all that easily memorisable.

The River Movement (mid 1990s -)

Drama, lighting, programs became the go-to strategy of many churches. A new move of the Spirit was sorely needed.

When it came, it brought joy. The work of the Spirit became visible, congregation-wide, in ways we'd only dreamed about. It was so easy. Even the musicians and song-leader would be overcome by the Spirit, unable to continue performing. People got spontaneously filled with the Spirit, spoke in tongues, laughed in the spirit, cried, repented, confessed sins, got delivered of demons, interpreted tongues, prophesied, laid hands on one another, many had to be carried out of the meeting barely able to walk, and stayed under the work of the Spirit for days.

This broke out repeatedly almost every time the congregation gathered, even at music practices.

It was led by the Spirit, not by the stage, music couldn't get in the way because even musicians would come under the Spirit and end up on the floor.

Meetings typically lasted three-and-a-half hours, followed by around 30 minutes of spontaneous singing and dancing.

This was what we'd dreamed of.

The manifestation of the Spirit spread to university campuses, lecture rooms, schools - whole communities were visited with the presence of God. Whole congregations suddenly fell to the floor in one go. Children were on the floor for hours, seeing visions of angels, heaven and Jesus.


Contemporary, Charismatic, Latter Rain, and Pentecostal churches seem to have diverged into two types:

Contemporary - which is a carry-on of the style of the youth movement of the 90s; or

There's another style which in theory wishes for the move of the Spirit, and songs are often about the Holy Spirit,  -but it seldom happens that the manifestation of the Spirit is given precedence during the music time itself.

It differs from the River Movement at its height, in that in the River Movement the Holy Spirit completely took over the musicians and the music-time, and the focus turned to the work of the Spirit in and through the congregation - and then praise and worship would break out spontaneously again at the end of the meeting, after the Holy Spirit had truly had His way.

Nowadays it's reverted to being music-dominated. And the music is loud. The congregation can't really be heard, similar to the Contemporary style churches. And although the songs may be about the Holy Spirit, the lyrics and melodies, like those used in the Contemporary-style churches, aren't all that memorisable.

The Holy Spirit sometimes begins to manifest during a song - but usually the song-program continues, and usually dominates. So the manifestation of the Spirit doesn't usually spread to the whole congregation or become the focus of the meeting.

Holy Spirit time, if it happens, is usually relegated to an altar-call at the end, or maybe a prayer-tunnel if they're really getting radical. But seldom is the Holy Spirit given the chance to move upon a whole congregation, and for the congregation to respond as a whole to His move. It's still music-dominated. And stage-dominated.

Domestic Rainwater-Harvesting

I guess 652, 300 litres of water falls on my parents roof per year on average.

1,787 litres per day.

(1100mm per year on average. Our roof area might be around 593m2. So, 652.3m3 rainwater per year.)

Our daily consumption of town-water averaged about 454 litres. That rose to 795 litres per day in summer when I was watering the lawns - and in addition to that I've been pumping water out of the ground.

But still, 1,787 litres per day of rainwater would be plenty - if we were storing it.

To store that amount of water at once, if the whole of our roofed area had underground tanks under the house - the tanks would only need to be about 1.1metres deep, I guess.

But you wouldn't need to store all the water at once: because it doesn't rain only once a year.

New houses could have water-storage spaces built into the external walls of the house. That would double as insulation, and sound-proofing.

Or external fences and walls could be made out of water-storage containers.

Or spaces under decking.

Electric water-pumps might cost around 30cents per hour to operate, guessing.

You might need some sort of water-purification system.

Grey water could also be stored. Ordinary dishwashing liquid is okay for lawns - it acts like a soil-wetting agent, softens the soil and water, allows more water and nutrients to be drawn up into the plant.

You could eventually recover the costs of installing the water-harvesting system from savings off your water-consumption bills.

Friday, 17 March 2017

Answered Prayer

MARK 11:22-24

22 And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.
23 For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.
24 Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

In this passage of Scripture, Jesus made answered prayer...

As certain as possible:

"Verily I say unto you".

For as many as possible:


About as much things as possible:


By the simplest means possible:


On the strongest foundation possible:

"in God".

With the only proviso:


What can you ask for today?

"Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit". 

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Casting Your Cares Upon the Lord

Some notes/thoughts after listening to Kenneth E. Hagin

Prayer is prayer. Yeah, sport is sport too, but different sports are played by different rules. Same with prayer. There are different kinds of prayer, which work differently.

  • The prayer of faith is a prayer to change things

  • The prayer of consecration isn't a prayer to change things. Thank God, Jesus wasn't trying to change anything when He prayed, "Nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt"

  • The prayer of casting your cares upon the Lord. While ever you haven't cast your cares upon the Lord, you're still going to be carrying your cares. But once you've cast your cares upon the Lord, the pity-party is over.

    Once you've cast it upon the Lord, you can't talk about it anymore. Just absolutely refuse to worry. Pass up some great opportunities to worry.  

    "Take no thought for tomorrow" means don't be overly concerned.

    Being anxious for nothing is something we practise, and get better at.

    Prayer is not only getting in His presence - prayer is living in His presence.

    You'll become an oddity to others, because others will talk like the Bible's true then live like everybody else. But you'll be anxious for nothing; you'll take no overly-anxious thought for the morrow.

    People might think you don't have enough sense to worry, when really you have too much sense to worry.

    We always walk by faith, not by sight.

    Sometimes you don't have to fast, nor increase your prayer-time - just turn it over to the Lord. Just marvellous things happen when you turn it over to Him.

    We have to do our part - but too often we're trying to do our part, God's part and everyone else's part, and still nothing happens.

    You can decide you're not going to lose one wink of sleep, and miss one meal (unless the Lord leads you to fast).

    Repent of the sin of worry. And then cast it all on the Lord, and refuse to worry. Say, "I'll never have the blues".

    How do you do it? By faith. God's Word is true.

    Turn loose of it - cast it on Him - roll it off onto Him.

    Alright, have you done it?

    Put your hand up and say out loud:

    "I don't have a care. I don't have a worry. I'm not overly anxious. I've rolled it all off on Jesus."

    Oh glory to God! Now put your other hand up and thank Him. Hallelujah! Thank you Jesus. Blessed be His Name. 


Which of the following was the Apostles' doctrine:

A. The Gospel is just a parenthesis B. The Law was just a parenthesis
Which of the following is taught in the New Testament: A. This Gospel was pretty-much unforeseen in Old Testament Prophecy B. The Gospel is the ultimate theme of Old Testament promise, shadow and prophecy

How about this: A. At some future time God must put aside His current focus on the Gospel and the Church, and start fulfilling the main themes of Old Testament promises and prophecies, or B. The Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ is the scheme by which Old Testament promises, shadows and prophecies see their fulfilment.
Or this:
A. Israel's Prophesied Messianic Kingdom-Salvation has been completely delayed until the future B. The Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ is the precise manner in which Israel's Prophesied Messianic Kingdom-salvation sees its fulfilment
And this:
A. The Gospel is for Gentiles now, then it will be for Israel in the future; or B. The Gospel was to the Jew first, and also to the Greek
A. The Gospel of grace, received by the Gentile Church, is something else; or B. Gentiles were grafted in to the same salvation that was experienced by Jewish believers first

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Tonight's Milkshake

100ml cold water
100ml full cream milk
Natural Vanilla Essence
Thickened cream
Four ice cubes
Ground cinnamon
Cadbury's Drinking Chocolate Powder
Nestle Malt Drink Powder
Cocoa Powder
Nature's Way Just Right Drink Powder


Monday, 13 March 2017


How many believe it would be really awesome if shofars were in key! 


The thing about conscience is that when someone feels unsure about something, he's unsure about it - no matter whether it's him doing it or us doing it.

That's why it's unreasonable for us to expect someone who feels unsure about something to keep his conviction to himself and not to have misgivings about us doing it.

Because if something's indeed wrong, it wouldn't only be wrong for him, it would be wrong for us too!

So we shouldn't demand that someone keeps his conviction to himself and not take issue with what we do - because that would mean we don't really understand how conscience works.

Or, we know - but don't want to be responsible for it. Because if we know, it means we have to make allowances not only for our own conscience, but also for our brother's.

It might mean we have to modify our behaviour to suit our brother's conscience - because we can always refrain from doing something and still have a clear conscience: but our brother can't be expected to go against his conscience.

We have to take responsibility, rather than place a responsibility on our brother which is impossible for reasons of conscience.

If we shut down discussion on the matter, accuse our brother of not walking in love for having a conscience - that's not really walking in love on our part.

Therefore the onus of keeping the peace, is not with our brother who feels something might be wrong, it's with those of us who think it's fine.

I'm talking about non-essentials. Things we can live without.

Love makes provision for others' consciences, it doesn't just do what we want.

That's maturity.


When a church is in revival, the congregation can't wait to get to church, and can't stop talking about it afterwards.

When a church is not in revival, it's mainly only the Pastors who Post how excited they are about preaching, and how much they enjoyed the day. 


When great miracles are happening, you can barely stop people spreading the news of how they got healed.

When it's the minister doing all the reporting, the miracles likely weren't all that obvious. 

Friday, 10 March 2017

Territorial Spirits

MARK 3:27
27 No man can enter into a strong man's house, and spoil his goods, except he will first bind the strong man; and then he will spoil his house.

A former missionary to Japan said the reason church-growth in Japan has been small, compared to South Korea's, is because in Japan the 'strong-man' was not first bound. 

The 'strong-man' over Japan, he said, was fear, a spirit of fear, fear of man. 

Throughout the history of Christianity in Korea, Christians were more boldly willing to die than deny their faith; but In Japan, Christians tended to bend their commitment to Christianity, and accommodated it to fit their fear of the establishment, he said.

I don't know the history thoroughly enough to know how true that is. But assuming it's true, how would we deal with that - how would we 'bind the strong-man'?

Is it by speaking directly to the spirit of fear over Japan, once and for all? Is it by confessing the corporate sins of Japan on their behalf?

What if someone else, or some other group, has already done that? Do you need to repeat it?

Paul mentioned pulling down strongholds. But he said the strongholds were imaginations, thoughts. And he said the weapons of our warfare are mighty through God to pull down strongholds.

So the main arena of the battle is the minds of men, not just the heavenlies. And one way to bring thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ is to preach and teach the Gospel.

Fear, specifically, is cast out by perfect love, John said. So ministering specifically about the love of God, would be strategic. 

But Paul did also ask churches to help him in prayer too.

One time in our city of Ipswich, Queensland, we went through a time when there was a small crime wave: lots of break-ins and theft. Even our church-building was broken-into, and musical equipment was stolen.

So our Pastor asked one of our youth-leaders to pray a prayer of binding that particular strongman over the city. He did so, commanding directly.

In less than a week the church's stolen musical equipment was returned; and the crime-wave in the city seemed to stop.

Another time when I was a student at Bremer State High School, when I was praying, I imagined a strongman over the school, over the youth of our society. And I prayed about that.

Immediately I felt I started seeing more people saved more easily.

However, Daniel was able to effectively engage the unseen realm of angels and princes unknowingly and indirectly - simply by setting himself to pray and fast about a matter.

Kenneth E. Hagin said the Lord told him something like, "You deal with the demons on earth, and I'll deal with the demons in the heavenlies". 

Thursday, 9 March 2017

Pork & Prawns

Something can be cleansed and sanctified in one sense, but not cleansed and sanctified in every sense.

For example, Paul explained that an unbelieving spouse is sanctified by the believing spouse; and he said that if that was not so, their children would have been unclean, but in fact they were holy. But that didn't mean unbelieving spouses were saved.

Similarly, speaking of formerly unclean foods in a vision, God instructed Peter, "Call not common what I have cleansed". So in one sense at least, those foods were cleansed of their former "common" status. But did that mean those foods are clean in every sense?

For example, could some flesh still be less clean than other flesh in a physical sense, even though all "unclean" flesh has been "cleansed" in a sanctimonious sense?

Was any flesh ever unclean in a physical sense? Jesus did explain that it's not what goes into a man that makes him unclean but what comes out from his heart. So maybe there really never was any flesh that was utterly unclean in a physical sense. Or maybe He just meant food couldn't make a person unclean in a sanctimonious sense.

Some flesh might have always been better than other kinds of flesh though. And of course, too much of a good thing can be bad. The Scripture says that: "Hast thou found honey? eat so much as is sufficient for thee, lest thou be filled therewith, and vomit it."

Monday, 6 March 2017

Lawn Care

Recording my thoughts on lawn care here, and adding to it from time to time.


Grass doesn't like wet feet. So you need good drainage. A base of chitters can therefore be good. With a few inches of loam on top of that.  


Scarify in Autumn.

Use a dedicated scarifier; or just keep mowing it lower and lower.

Vertical Mowing

Vertical mowing encourages lateral growth for a tighter sward. It breaks up patches where there's been high growth spurts. It can help eliminate incidences of scalping while mowing.


Hollow core, and leave the pulled dirt-plugs on the grass.

Using a normal pitch-fork can further compact the soil.

You can get hollow forks which pull out plugs of dirt.

Top-dressing immediately before coring, may have benefits - as well as immediately after, as needed.


Scalp, but leave enough time for the grass to recover before the cold starts at about ANZAC day (Southern Hemisphere).

Top Dressing/Levelling

Top dress with certified washed pit sand, or river sand, weed-free. But some people prefer a courser sand, because it doesn't compact as much and allows better drainage.

Dethatch first.

Fertilise two weeks beforehand, so the grass is empowered in advance to recover.

Growing season is the usual time to do it.


Over-seed with pure, certified grass seed of your chosen variety.


Check the pH levels of the soil - 6.6 is ideal. If it's too acidic, add lime. Too alkaline, mulch.


Water deeply twice a week, rather than lightly more often - it encourages deep root-growth rather than shallow.

Water-retaining granules can be put onto the grass: they can absorb three times their weight in water.

Water in the early morning, when the grass has begun photosynthesising but evaporation is still low. The heat of the ground will help draw the water downwards. It also gives the ground a chance to dry-out before nightfall, and helps avoid moisture-induced fungus growth.

Spear-pump water is higher in iron than town-water. Iron can be good for the grass.

Spear-pump water is also saltier than town-water. Iron and salt increase the electrical conductivity of the soil.

Lightning might add nitrogen to rainwater. Nitrogen can be good for the grass.

Town water tends to be more acidic than rainwater which tends to be more alkaline. So the source of water can affect the pH of the soil.


Spot-treat weed with herbicide, rather than apply it to the whole lawn.

For Nut grass, Sedgehammer, Kenpra (from GTS), Sempra, and Zempra have been recommended.

For Summer grass (weed) a paspalum killer, Kamba, Ronstar, or Dimension have been suggested.

For what I think is called Creeping Indigo (Prostrate Spurge), Dicamba, or Apparent, or Associate, have been suggested - but using Dicamba mightn't be suitable if it's in Sir Walter, only 'couch'.

Crows Foot, and Nut Grass, Sledgehammer has been suggested.


Sometimes use organic, slow-release fertilisers.

Synthetic fertilisers might put more nutrients into the soil than the plant can take-up.

Include a soil wetting agent with fertiliser, to facilitate the uptake of nutrients into the grass.


Sometimes mulch the clippings, other times bag.

Mulching Sir Walter grass might encourage the runners to grow on the surface.

Mulching can increase the acidity of the soil.


Mow the grass in different directions.

Mow in the mid to late afternoon, to avoid heat stress.

Ensure mower blades are sharp, to avoid tearing the grass-leaves and making them susceptible to disease.

Mowing three times weekly, lower the cutting height by half a millimetre each time, until you reach the desired cutting height.


Using a grooming machine, groom in opposing directions each time.

Plant Growth Inhibitor

Plant growth inhibitor might slow down the growth of the height of the grass, and instead put that energy into the quality of the grass-blade, which is what you want.

Examples include Primo Max, Trinex and Nufarm. Available from Living Turf Warehouse Wacol, or GTS.

It can be applied monthly.

It's been recommended wherever reel (cylinder) mowers are used at low height.


Use sprays that don't harm bees, birds and fish.

After spraying, spray again seven days later.

Moths means grubs.

And beetles.


Worms can be good for the grass.

Nitrogen Fixing Plants


Some grass types stripe better than others. Queensland Blue stripes quite well.  

Let God Take Care of It

One day I picked up the phone, to call the City Council.
We were seeing increasing numbers of Common Myna's, acting aggressively towards two native Peewees.
The Peewees lived in our yard. One of them followed us around the yard, or tapped on the window wherever we were sitting inside - my parents became a little bit fond of it.
At first I thought of getting an air-rifle.
Then a couple of days later I came across a pile of black and white feathers in the garden, and I really wished I had: because it looked like one of the Peewees had met his day.
But I found out air-rifles are illegal. So I was thinking of inquiring about bird-traps which the Council offers particularly to trap Common Myna's.
Just when I was about to dial the number, however, I felt in my heart not to worry about it.
"I can take care of it," I seemed to hear the Spirit of my Father say.
I relinquished control of the matter, and committed it instead to the Lord.
And I'm not sure that a Myna has been seen in our yard ever since!
Today I overheard mum happily telling dad that there were three Peewees on the back deck - two adults, with a young-one. I can hear one chirping away as I write.
What can God take care of for you?

Thursday, 2 March 2017

When Less is More

Sometimes the way to have a better ministry among a certain people, is to have less of a ministry among them.

Some people, when they realise God has used them to have some input in a certain group, and it's appreciated by the group, feel they want to sure-up their ministry in the group, or maximise it, by attempting to continue to pave more interaction for themself in that group. Sometimes it's the group itself that seems to be wanting you to have more of a role.

For example, they might seem to want you to be continuously involved in the nitty-gritty, ongoing affairs of their lives. Or you might want to try to become somewhat of a pastor to that group. But you might not be cut-out for that, even though at first you might think you are. And they might not feel like relating to you fully as a pastor, like you might be expecting, even though at first it might look like they would like to. In time that can over-burden the relationship. You might not know in advance what the cracks might look like, when they begin to appear.

Whereas if you'd contented yourself with the initial input you had, or the specific role you had, for which you were greatly appreciated, and resisted the pressure or the urge to assume more of a role, then your burden on the relationship would have remained light, and you would have continued to be appreciated for what you genuinely contributed, for what your God-given role really is. The relationship would stay fresh.

You might desire to feel connected - but let God connect you in the Body the way He sees fitting.

Sometimes resisting too strong a connection in a group, is the way to be more ideally connected to the group.

When people were so impressed with Jesus' ministry they wanted to take Him and make Him a king, he slipped away from their company. It wasn't Jesus' time! Jesus set His face like a flint, towards Calvary - to the point many were offended that He didn't visit or stay longer in their villages. But had Jesus given-in, He couldn't have gone on to become their Saviour.

I once heard Dr Rodney Howard-Browne say that he was more of a blessing to Africa by having left Africa.

Stay your course in life! That's where the ease, the freshness, the blessing, the best relationships with everyone will be.