Posts by toowoombacrc

Posts by toowoombacrc

What Church is like for a person on the Autism Spectrum

“Like most people on the autism spectrum, I need some structure and predictability. Surprises are challenging. Unwanted physical exchanges can be difficult. I often can’t sustain eye contact. Some weeks I can’t participate in activities that fall in the category of fellowship. No one expects you to walk on eggshells or get everything right. Just aim for greater knowledge and empathy. Listening to our stories—including reading pieces like this—is a great start.” Read more…

Take the Long View

“Now politics is one thing, our lives are another. I wonder if as Christians we’re in danger of exactly the same sort of short-term thinking? What would it look like if I held Jesus to the same standards that I demand from a Prime Minister? I reckon I’d be calling for a leadership spill far too often. But that would only be because I had utterly unrealistic expectations about what should be happening. Yet I wonder if our increasingly short-term…

Is Reading the Bible a Chore or a Delight?

“How is the Bible to you at the moment? A page turner or a turn off-er? So, here’s a question worth answering: is there anything we can do to trigger a moment when reading the Bible stops being a chore and becomes a pleasure? In a dry spell, is there something that will foster some new spiritual energy? When reading has become a chore what, if anything, can shift us away from duty and toward delight?” Read more…

Not Worrying ≠ Not Caring

“Those nights when you lie awake, restless and tossing and turning, your mind churning over a future that is uncertain and unknown. Those days when your heart is heavy and your spirit is sorrowful while you imagine what will befall you or that person you love. There isn’t a human being alive who doesn’t know the agony of worry. There isn’t a human being alive who hasn’t allowed legitimate concern to devolve into illegitimate anxiety. But just because worry is…

The Doctrines of Graciousness

“The “doctrines of grace” are explosive — first mind-boggling and then, if they truly take root, inevitably life-transforming. When they land on a young and restless person, they can make him a kind of liability for a season (though a host of other benefits may come with it). Giving mental assent to the Bible’s teachings about our depravity and God’s election, atonement, and grace is quicker and easier than learning to live out the kind of virtues God pairs with…

But I’m Not an Evangelist

One of the biggest reasons people don’t want to share their faith is the belief that only people with the spiritual gift of evangelism are called to do that. I’ve heard it many times, “I don’t have the gift of evangelism!” Or “Do you really expect everyone in your church to be willing and able to share their faith?” And the answer is “Yes!” So why do I believe everyone who follows Jesus should be able to explain why? Firstly,…

Our Father Who Art in Parliament

“These precious and intimate words were given by Jesus to his disciples for so much more than to protect us from the slippery slope of secularism… So let’s not waste time fighting to save our culture by keeping The Lord’s Prayer in parliament. Rather, let us prayerfully go out into our culture and share the good news about Jesus, so that in Christ our fellow citizens can come to know that “Our Father in Heaven” can be their Heavenly Father…

Is your Church a Cray Boat or a Cruise Ship?

One day, while diving for crayfish off the east coast of Tasmania as a young man, I was invited on-board a professional cray boat. It was a big boat, designed to spend weeks off-shore setting and checking cray pots. I found it fascinating. It had narrow stairs that descended below decks that were so step they were almost ladders. It had a huge hold filled with sea water that had room for thousands of crayfish. The bridge was filled with…

Render Much?

“Governments are clumsy, lumbering entities that are insatiably fed by cash. But that is the way God wants it. The reservoir of funds is there to keep the beast fuelled so that God can use it. The fact that governments gush with overspending, splash out on the wrong pursuits, leak untold fortunes through inefficiency and corruption, is all besides the point. Let’s not forget whose money this is (hint: not yours).” Read more…

Our History and the Christian Connection

This past week was NAIDOC week and our article of the week this week will celebrate the stories of two people who spoke up for those unable to speak for themselves – our history and the Christian connection: “Before the 1960s, Australia’s indigenous people were not Australian citizens even though they had been born in Australia and their ancestors had lived here for generations. They were not allowed to vote, not counted in the census figures and didn’t have the…