Friday, March 25, 2005

Playing around with Photoshop

Ive been mucking about with photoshop trying to learn how to use it and put some different slants, and effects on some of my photos...check them out here Ive been photo crazy just recently!...see my photo blog, flickr Gallery and slideshow, and my old photo album. Ive been having a look around at photoblogs recently and there is some incredible stuff going on.. For example check out this flickr slideshow based on "transparent screens" basically where someone takes a photo of whats behind there laptop and uses it as the background to try and make it look like its see through check out these AMAZING examples Here are some of my picks of individual photos from my favourite Photobloggies finalists: Orbit 1 Chromasia Chromagenic Pixel Prints No Traces Durham Township Dont think I can take such awesome photos which an auto focus digi cam but I would recommend Canon in general, great products and great customer service.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Quickly on Gimiks

This is the 3rd time ive written loads on the new gimiks I have on my blog so now im bullet point sumarising!.. -My feed was down but now I think its back up sticking my head under the covers worked! -Ourmedia is a good new site for hosting your media check it out -Audioscrobbler is a key (not an awesome tool) but enables me to run the app below - Flickr is cool everyone seems to use it so I check it out see my photos (different from Byrnesys Photos) here Enjoy any questions comment and ill expand! Cheers

Feeling a little Rough about not coming home

Well Im taking a big long breath out Thanks to the fact Ive just finished the hardest essay Ive had I think so far in Uni, it touched on some really important doctrinal issues as it looked at Whether the Doctrine of the trinity has any relevance for the Christian life and its been a focus of my freakout this week as far as getting it done and also just thinking through some trinity theology, it was also written in a Quaestio format which Ive never written anything in before so it all learning with loads of reading. But yeah Im listening to Simon by Lifehouse who I havent listened to for a while. This was my last big thing to get done before Easter Break which is 3 weeks!...I still have an assignment to start and complete with alot of work but this is all I have to hand in before I leave for 3 weeks. Everybody is packing up and going home and Im somewhat regretting not being able to do that, but I guess that the way the cookie crumbles. It looks like I dont have any cool job to do over the 3 weeks which in a way will be good because it help me do a good job on the Popular Spirituality project, but I feel a little purposeless and the fact there are good reasons to be here but also good reasons to be up in St Combs so I think itll just unfold the way it unfolds.

Murder Mystery Video

Hey Guys I posted on my weekend with photos and then linked to a Video which apparently didnt work so I hosted it somewhere else. To watch it you will need Windows Media Player (which if you have Windows you probably have)...The best way to do it, is right click on the link below and select "Save Target As" as its 7mb file so it wont stream that great. Downloads the Video here

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

On a Lighter Note

Ive decided, Kurt Cobain didnt die, yes Ive jumped in with the conspiracy theorists..... This evening Ive been listening to some of the Greatest Hits Album by Nirvana in another attempt to revive my adolescence (see skating) Anyway back to my Consipiracy theory..Kurt Cobain became a Worship Leader!!...Yep as I was listening to those dulcit tones, whole songs with only 2 Chords in them (G and D I suspect, with the Eminor for the Chorus) I thought...busted Kurt Cobain swapped Identities and became a Christian Celeb. Think about it- - Cant play Guitar - Struggles to stay on the key when singing - Runs off and leaves his band members stranded - Has an annoying other half - Loads of adoring teenage girls The Evidence is all there. (im sure he'll be turning in his hypothetical grave, well its kind of a Nietzche is Dead thing)

Doing Church Now, in the Light of Yesterday with Expectance for Tomorrow

Doing Church Now, in the Light of Yesterday with Expectance for Tomorrow.... Well Ive been making skippidy skips on my essay which is I think been the hardest since Ive been at University...but anyway Im writing this to get away from that for a second.... I want to briefly pick apart a quote I used yesterday on an Island of Methodology: "This has affected the way we experience reality, and the way we do church. We are far more open to the past, more aware of the present (and less infatuated with the future). We celebrate the moment and redeem the time. Firstly This has affected the way we experience reality obviously I have to precursor this to explain it properly the following quote is what has "affected the way we experience...." Modern Theologians and missiologists, just like other social scientists of their day, were guilty of abandoning history and geography in their attempt at creating or translating universal truths. Pastors developed ministry programs to be universally appropriate in any place or time. Even much of the argument today about modernism vs. postmodernism happens in empty space, in the world of abstract theory and not in the real world of people, events, lifestyles and culture. Postmodernism interupted the abstract time and space of modernity. Andrew Jones, Time and Space: Being Now(h)ere. Now I don't want to start a huge debate about post-modernity but first of all lets just say that I resonate with a change in understanding of reality in being local... basically in not jumping on the bandwagons of ministry ideals: the change in relaity was one in which we read 10 ten tips of leadership took it, thought about it, then adapted it or wrote it off, not uplifted it as "the way". Recognising that church happens in reality, in time, in cultures not in the grey, blank, default world of theories, this is outworked by what I would call "living the life" not just "theorizing or thinking about the life" We are far more open to the past, more aware of the present (and less infatuated with the future). We are far more open to the past Its a new thing, Its a new be honest Ive heard that so many times in churches, mostly charasmatic and it makes me cringe, Ecclesiastes 1:9 (New International Version) 9 What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. now I understand the idea that God will bless something to fruition but I think the church needs to come out of the mindset that says that until the 20th Century, the Church was dead, and we have nothing to learn or bring to the contemporary setting of church. More aware of the present - We live NOW, not 50 years ago or even 5 years ago, now Im not advocating that we hold up "relevance" as the no.1 aim of the church, but Jesus talked about peoples lives in a language they could understand, he was accesible and I think as disciples of him we have a duty to be too. Check this out, I hope you understand the link to what Im saying less infatuated with the future We celebrate the moment and redeem the time - I really struggle with the revival mindedness of Church sometimes, probably I am recoiling from not such great experiences in the Charasmatic Church but I think in order to be aware of the present we need to get out of our revival prayer meetings sometimes and be salt and light, see if that makes a difference! What do you think??

On an Island of Methodology

"This has affected the way we experience reality, and the way we do church. We are far more open to the past, more aware of the present (and less infatuated with the future). We celebrate the moment and redeem the time. We are more committed to the local space, the ground, of where we minister. We are less abstract, more real, and more authentic, more holistic." While re-evaluating, re-vitalising and re-examining my position on Emergant Church, which I see as a revolutionary shift in structural Church, I still believe I can use the term (or please allow me the grace to use it and correct me in the comments) Emerging Church as something to describe people who believe in community, revitalising Church (a new wineskin) which is still centred around God not just catering to men and not holding onto the traditions which have become barriers, but respecting the ones which are edifying. The quote above really resonates with me, The quote above is extremly subjective, as I very carefully selected it and removed it from Skinny's stuff on Emergant Church check out the 3rd in his series on Emergant Church: PostModern sensability, I think he has some good points. I feel somewhat stuck on an island of methodology....I resonate with some of the emergent stuff, thought I can never communicate my point effectivly enough to be understood, while being hesitant to run away from my evangelical roots, I honestly think there is alot of great stuff still there and dont believe all "traditional" Churches to be dead. But I do see the need to be more than a sunday morning church, for church to be renovated and by that I mean the people which are the church, not the biblical roles for church, or God's Kingship over it. I resonate with many Orthodox traditions, im bored of 80's Charasmaticism, fustrated with the evangelicals, confused about the emergents!.....There seems to be 2 camps which I resonate with and neither of them fully work for me. So here I am on this Island of Methodology I think I'll stick to being a Christian, a term originally used derogativly meaning "little Christs", Man what a challenge, I know this is my first calling, while resonating with movements/institutions/denomination is fine, Im in an im-perfect church because its full of imperfect people, but Im fine with that because Jesus came for us, the failures, but Im gonna try as hard as I can.....

Blogging up Evererst This is Cool, Blogging your ascent of Everest! Key Dates are apparently * 28th March - Gavin leaves UK for Nepal * 1st April - Trek to mountains begins * 20th April - Island Peak climb & trek ends * 24th April - First climb on Everest * 24th April to 17th May - Load carrying up to South Col * 19th May to 28th - Summit window!

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

2 Books you might consider

Im Stuck in Trinitarian Theology essay mode which is frying my brain right now but while I am: Heres some things you may want to consider reading......I haven't read them....but you might want to Joe Thorn briefly comments on a book I havent read but would like to The Barbarian Way - Erwin McManus "Domesticated Christians are far too willing to abdicate the battle for the soul of the world. Civility focuses our energy on all the wrong places. We spend our lives emphasizing our personal development and spiritual well-being." Heres another book that looks like an interesting read check out the editoral reviews at Amazon God's Politics : Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It - Jim Wallis "While the Right in America has hijacked the language of faith to prop up its political agenda -- an agenda not all people of faith support -- the Left hasn't done much better, largely ignoring faith and continually separating moral discourse and personal ethics from public policy. While the Right argues that God's way is their way, the Left pursues an unrealistic separation of religious values from morally grounded political leadership. The consequence is a false choice between ideological religion and soulless politics."

Spring is Here

Spring is here!...Never thought it would come, Spring reminds me that summer exists which reminds me than I dont purely have to endure life!...excellent This is outside my flat which is normally pretty bleak, and the twigs for trees which have been there for ages have finally gone!..and we got blossom, it kind of reminds me of Hero

Sermon on the Passover by the Bishop of Sardis

Im not sure what you would call these but you can see below Ive blogged something similar, they seem to be confessions of faith, or explanations of Christian Tradition concepts anyway I read them on my travels trying to write this essay - Whether the Doctrine of the trinity has any relevance for the Christian life? But they stir me when I read them. Heres something by the Bishop of Sardis in a sermon on the passover around 1800 years ago. Click here to Read it (wait for it to load) .

On The Trinity This Morning

Im studying the trinity for an essay in for friday, its going over my head, but I was reading for it and this quote really stirred something in me so Ill leave it here for you:

It is the father to whom all existence owes its origin. In Christ and through Christ He is the source of all. In contrast to all else He is self-Existent. He Does not draw his being from without, but possess it Himself and in Himself. He is Infinite, for nothing contains Him and He contains all things; He is eternally unconditioned by space, for He is illimitable; eternally anterior (Placed before or in front) to time, for time is His creation. Let imagination range to what you may suppose is Gods utmost limit, and you will find Him present there; strain as you will there is always a further horizon towards which to strain. Infinity is his property, just as power of making such effort is yours. Words will fail you, but His being will not be circumscribed. Or again turn back the pages of History, and you will find Him ever present; should numbers fail to express the antiquity to which you have penetrated; yet Gods eternity is not diminished. Gird up your intellect to comprehend Him as a whole; He eludes you, God as a whole has left something within your grasp, but this something is inextricably involved in his entirety. Thus you have missed the whole, since it is only a part which remains in your hands; nay, not even a part for you are dealing with a whole which you have failed to divide. For a part implies division, a whole is undivided, and God is everywhere and wholly present wherever He is. Reason therefore cannot cope with Him, since no point of contemplation can be found outside Himself and since eternity is eternally his. This is a true statement of the mystery of that unfathomable nature which is expressed by the name Father: God invisible, ineffable, infinite. Let us confess by our silence that words cannot describe Him; Let sense admit that it is foiled in its attempt to apprehend, and reason in the effort to define. Yet he has, as we said, in Father a name to indicate his nature; He is a Father unconditioned. He does not, as men do, receive the power of paternity from an external source. He is unbegotten, everlasting, inherently eternal. To the Son only is He known, for no one Knoweth the Father save the Son and Him to whom the Son willeth to reveal Him, nor yet the Son save the father. Each has perfect and complete Knowledge of the Other. Therefore since no one knoweth the Father save the Son, let our thoughts of the Father be at one with the thoughts of the Son, the only faithful witness, who reveals Him to us. (Hilary of Poitiers, On the Trinity II.6)

Monday, March 21, 2005


FLAT FURNITURE UPDATE: We got a new Sofa...dont know if that is why I look so happy (i didnt have enough time to retake loads)....Comfy fun, so come and stay in Aberdeen we now have a comfy sofa (5 Star Student Accomadation)

My Weekend in Photos

Ive worked out how to link to specific things on my photo blog so heres my photo blog of the weekend Check it out
I had an awesome time at a Murder Mystery Dinner with the guys at Church, I was just gutted I couldnt get photos of me being gunged in Sunday School!

The Spread of Our Community

Read this on my RSS throught Planet Emergent today, Its absolutly crazy!! Brians Baunte comments on Jonny Bakers World Stats, what a web!!...check it out here Its a pull from Jonny Bakers Blog - Heres the original post "At the beginning of the 20th century 75% of the world’s Christians were in Europe and America. At the beginning of the 21st century 60% of the world’s Christians were in Asia, Africa and Latin America. In other words the heartlands of the Christian faith have dramatically shifted. In large part that is due to people who responded to the challenge of mission and dared to cross cultures to share Christ with others. We are probably all aware of the mistakes, the blind spots, the embarrassingly Western clothes in which the gospel was shared at times and the legacy that is still being worked through because of that colonial past. But by the grace of God the church has emerged in amazing ways round the world in the last hundred years. " Jonny Baker I have not much to say on it really apart from I am "energized by it like Brian Baute, of which this was my first visit to his blog but love the title "Relentless Grace - Grace Makes Beauty Out of Ugly Things" We have much to learn from our brothers and sisters in Asia, Africa, and Latin America as the gospel is incarnated in those cultures. And we in the West need the humility to follow these leaders on other continents and of other (non-white) cultures and races. Brian Baute

Friday, March 18, 2005

My Thoughts Column and Emerging Church Analysis

After finishing the last post, I decided to scrap the "recent posts" column as it didnt include any posts that weren't on the main page anyway so Ive replaced it with "My Longer Thoughts" hardly an Inspired title I know but its just alist of stuff Ive written about idividual things as opposed to stuff like "Its my Birthday woop woop" posts. I am journeying much faster in my discovery and thoughts on everything, to the point where I cringe when I read some of my posts from even a month ago, but what can I say Ive linked them all so Here am I "worts and all" as a british monarch once said. Interesting Stuff on Emergent today is: - Andrews Blogging some stuff about *Preface/Intro *Part 1- EmergAnt-1 Emergent Vocabulary *Part 2- EmergAnt-2 Countercultural History - Article on Emergent here in a WorshipLeader Magazine - Andrews a world celeb (check out the bottom!, hehe) - Interesting Article on Emerging stuff by Jessamine Journal (not sure what that is to be honest!) - Online Dictionary Definition on Emerging

Vision #2

Before reading thisyou may findi it helpful to read Vision #1 as its will be a helpful back drop..... Last time I talked a bit about some emergent models as de-constructive models and how these in theory in my view they can be un-helpful to Vision and being in passionate of pursuit of vision. This is not a "we shouldn't de-construct" church models its just a let make sure we re-construct even if thats not reconstruction which even vaguely resembles the model before (although I suspect it will not be hugely different in the end) The problem we can fall into is that as "post-modern" and "post-evangelical" movements and people come about it can very easily be "post-hope", cynical, confused people who are just doing enough in holding on. Now Im not condeming this position, Ive been there many times, but we shoudnt create churches around our commonolity of fustration is what Im trying to offer. The problem with this position is, its a human condition not a constant place for us to reside in and certainly not a situation for us to create a church around. The Gospel is a World changing Gospel, its full of brokeness yes, but its also full of Vision, Hope, Faith, Purity and a God centred Optimism. We need to be a people, and I pray God would continually mould me into a person that goes through the valleys still running out of the other side with Vision. Challenges are not meant to taint us in the way they so easily can, we can come out with wisdom, but often they steal that Joy, Hope and Optimism which the Gospel inspires. Community is something I believe in, but its not the centre of my life, as people re-discovering Gods design in us that we long for meaningful, and purposeful community shouldn't make us exalt community as "the way, the truth and the light" we need to recognise God has ordained community to work FOR HIS GLORY not for this concept "community". In some final thoughts in this section of thoughts on Vision, I personally would love to spend my life "enjoying God" being intellectual in thinking about God and how to live for God, its in my nature to be inquisitive and to theorise, I love thinking, and these are all good things in thier right place, but Im overwhelmed that the gospel is a gospel which inspires action from those who store it in their finish is a great quote that Roger Ellis said last week (in bold) but I thought the stuff around it was just as inspiring, and also James 2: 14-17 James 2: 14-17 (the message) Faith in Action 14Dear friends, do you think you'll get anywhere in this if you learn all the right words but never do anything? Does merely talking about faith indicate that a person really has it? 15For instance, you come upon an old friend dressed in rags and half-starved 16and say, "Good morning, friend! Be clothed in Christ! Be filled with the Holy Spirit!" and walk off without providing so much as a coat or a cup of soup--where does that get you? 17Isn't it obvious that God-talk without God-acts is outrageous nonsense? William Booth "How can anybody with spiritual eyesight talk of having no call, when there are such multitudes around them who never hear a word of God, and never intend to; who can never hear, indeed, without the sort of preacher who will force himself upon them? Can a man keep right in his own soul who can see all that, and yet stand waiting for a call to preach? Would they wait so for a call to help anyone to escape from a burning building, or to snatch a sinking child from a watery grave? Does not growth in grace, or even ordinary growth of intelligence, necessarily bring with it that deepened sense of eternal truths which must intensify the conviction of duty to the perishing world?Does not an unselfish love, the love that goes out towards the unloving, demand of a truly loving soul immediate action for the salvation of the unloved? And are there not persons who know that they possess special gifts, such as robust health, natural eloquence, or power of voice, which specially make them responsible for doing something for souls?And yet I do not at all forget, that above and beyond all these things, there does come to some a special and direct call, which it is peculiarly fatal to disregard, and peculiarly strengthening to enjoy and act upon. I believe that there have been many eminently holy and useful men who never had such a call; but that does not at all prevent anyone from asking God for it, or blessing Him for His special kindness when He gives it.The call, at any rate, had come for him. It was a call from Heaven, and from humanity as well."

My Celtic Prayer

The title of this is a bit of a rip from Arlens Blog, because he posted an awesome post the other day about daily celtic prayer but seeing as I have a prayer this morning and come from (Cornwall) and great celtic nation and live in (Scotland) a celtic nation I thought I would steal the title. Last night Forbes was talking about taking up your cross but I though about it this morning as I was spending some time, and really again tried to understand the implications of what that is: Faithful God, You are what exists when my hearts goes silent in the awe of who you are, Thankyou that you picked up your corss to "make all things new" and today help me live in the light of the forgiveness you bring Lord. I know that the cross prompts a response of brokeness from me, that I was hopeless without you sovereign plan, and so I choose to take up my cross, for my flesh to be crucified in the same way you chose to be, I offer myself no because you need it, but because its the groan of my heart to become more like you. Today I ask for your hand to guide me, your spirit to fill me and for your word to temper me. Thankyou Jesus, Amen

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Sacrifice and Vision

Well Ive been getting more and more excited about my vision for next year and I think the 75% option of me moving up to St Combs is moving toward the 90% and the 10% is the unlikely event of a herd of buffalo running me down before such a time of me moving! If your wondering what Im talking about check out my vision for the next year. I went up to Church tonight, and am feeling even more peaceful about, well peaceful not maybe the right word but I am excited at the prospect of moving up. Forbes talked tonight about Genesis 22 where God calls to Abraham to offer his only son, I was as ever blown away by this story, and challenged. I know moving to St Combs will make my degree a little harder, well maybe even alot harder, but I know that something resonates in me about commiting to the church in seeing awesome things happen there and God was calling me to offer up what I consider to be my treasured thing (getting my degree) in the hope that he will offer it back, but just the willingness for him to take it away. So tonight I offered it up, knowing that he may call me to sacrifice how much I could give to this degree, which is humbling but I know that whatever God calls me to it will be the best in a way I could never have orchestrated. Things even within a day are exciting me for next year, for the sake of Integrity I cant say anything yet but there are many pieces on Gods chess board and I have the honour of being able to see some of them move in great places.

Recent Blogger Activity

I havent had (or chosen to have to be honest) much time to really explanify thoughts on here for a few days, but Ive been busy Blogging on my new blog and put up some 400 word papers "Popular Spirituality in Contemporary Western Culture" Course which Im doing just now on my Essays blog. so feel free to check those out, Unfortunatly with the new photo blog each individual photo counts as a post, so I cant point you to any particular post but check out the photos from me rediscovering skating!...and some cool ones at the bottom of the page by now of me at the beach the other day.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Photo Blog

Well since getting my Digital Camera Ive been taking loads of photos so I decided today to start a photo blog so I dont just clog this Blog up with all my photos, so Check it out over at Byrnesys Photos, theres a link on the right now anyway. UPDATE: Ive been thinking this evening, I think the photo Blog will becoming the trash can of my mind/camera for me to be creative and random, as believe it or not I actually think about it when I post over here. So watch that space

The Future with Potnoodles

Well Im Living the student dream, its potnoodle for lunch, pretty mink I know but Im making my way through the back ends of my cupboard and as you can see having alot of fun doing it! Today I met with Forbes, and Stu and came up with some vision for the next year..... Feel free to stop reading anyone who doesn't know me outside of the blogosphere, as this will probably be of interest to people I know; but it looks like (75%) I may be moving out of Aberdeen next year. Today I met with Forbes (Pastor in Chief) and Stu (Friend in Chief) and we discussed the next year and I decided pretty much that nothing is opening up in Aberdeen as far as flats go so Im seriously considering moving up to st combs and travelling into Aberdeen. Stu and Emelie are looking at a house to buy and the house they are staying in right now is cheaper than my tiny little room here in Aberdeen. Also I may end up sharing the house with any possible gap year students, or a guy called Fraser whose moved up to live in St Combs. Im just leaving all that to God right now, but I looked into the practicalities of it and what my heart was saying, and how I felt God was leading me, and I think that I know I want to invest in St Combs Church as a Community effecting the community and so basically moving up there will just mean I get involved more with that which is really where my heart is, and see friends in Aberdeen during the day pretty much. I know it will sacrifice social stuff in Aberdeen to some extent but I really feel like I want invest and become purposeful in my involvement in this Church plant. So looking with Vision to next year, hopefully I may be moving into a place somewhere near st combs and getting a saturday job at first in somewhere like tesco but the church is also looking to start a cafe which they've bought land for already and I may be able to get a job in that which would be great in combining ministry and work! Anyway this is all speculative, but if things were to move in this direction then I would probably look at being up here for the summer excpet for a few weeks in Cornwall around my mums wedding and my grandparents anniversary. So thats the prospect for next year....Im just thinking with Faith, and praying that God will give me the heart, mind and will to do a degree and live up in st combs.

All Change...

Just finished my exam, was mediocre, I think I passes which will be a blessing for the amount or lack of I put into revising, but I think I wrote a bit too little. Anyway thats all done and dusted. POINT OF THE POST BEING Arlen is Moving to "Thoughts On The Way to the Abbey" from "Wanderer of the North" (which no longer exists even as a dormant blog) starting with a great post about holistic communion with God check it out here Uodate your RSS to If you've not read any of Arlens stuff before, start!...I think its great. Also you may notice Ive sorted the blog listings on the right into "Old Friends" and "elationships some of the "elationships" I do actually meet eg Andrew, but its just a place to put all those great people I meet, am linked by, and resonate with in contrast to my friends outside of blogosphere who happen to blog, not cutting there stuff down as John and The Walkers are blogging some great stuff of wider relevance than personal info. Also there are peeps in the elationships that im relating to more than a one off, thanks for the link emails, eg. Arlen, whose a great encouragement and always give me good stuff to think about. Im not justufying this move just letting you know the reasons for you nosey peeps. Also I nabbed the cool word "elationships" from Eric Keck, thought it was a great word for the context, not sure if he made it up, but props anyway.

Cards from your Auntie

I got loads of awesome cards for my birthday, but this in the funny section was one of the best! Thanks Auntie Shelley, where would we be without our extended family.

Church Culture @ Doggie's Breakfast

Just had a learning and interesting conversation about "church culture" over at Stephens weblog, funny thing is I think probably we both agreed from the start had we been speaking face to face but on the journey to discovering that we had some interesting points. Check it out @ Doggies Breakfast

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Amy in Mission

Amys Letter My Awesome Friend Amy is helping lead a mission over in Ecuador (thanks John) Anyway, this is to my knowledge her first update...awesome stuff Today has mostly involved listening to Josh Groban check it out, not my normal cup o tea!

Vision Part #1

Taken off the Forth Road Bridge nr Edinburgh this weekend, thought it looked kind of like those cheesy encouragement poster which might say "Vision" then some catchy line under it! I believe that God loves us, but that our purpose on earth is more than to develop deeper relationship with him. There is more of a response required when we know who God is, and what he is calling us to be. After some teaching from Rodger Ellis over the weekend I asked him "what do we do and how do we respond when Visions seem to fail?" His answer was good and it reminded me of some stories Id forgotten. These are some thoughts of my own mixed round with some thing I remember Roger mentioning: Basically Vision is doing something bigger than yourself, encouraging others into purpose, you can be a visionary who inspires other people to do the vision you've been given but I think very often God gives us vision with a mind for us to get on with them. Im becoming more and more fustrated by travelling prophets and visionarys who speak stuff, then run off, now Im sure there doing some great things but to be honest I wish I could nail one down and get them to live out their words sometimes! Vision is not something that exists as a basis for our lives, Jesus is the rock, so failure of vision dosent mean a de-throning of Jesus, or his power. Gods plan will not and can not be hindered by our works, his Final plan is in the hands of the almighty. Vision also dosent need to be something that comes in a massive vision or dream, we can inspired by other people and scripture and just say "this needs to be done, I want to advance the kingdom in this way, and commit to being faithful in completing it. Roger had a great sound bite which stood out for me in his whole response, it was "Even id it dosen't work, when Jesus returns I want to be doing something for him, even if that is making mistakes" He also said that everyone, who has ever had their moment of triumph in vision will have a loads of failures that lead up to them So I think if we keep our eyes on him (God btw not Roger!) then we just need to see the over all plan sometimes, especially when we fail, just knowing it was for God only means we can trust God that if we throw out seeds hes the one who makes them grow or wither (nice biblical type analogy I thought! hehe) I was thinking over these things on the way to Edinburgh on the train, and I thought about a story that Mark Davy once told which has stuck with me (found on ServLife: The First Missionary to Korea By Joel Vestal June 2000 Today in the world millions of people are giving nothing else but their very lives for the sake of the Kingdom of God. The well known Christian martyr, Jim Elliott, wrote, “He is no fool to give up what he cannot keep, in order to gain what he cannot loose.” It has been said that the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church. This is surely true as you study church history. I came across a story that I would like to share with you. The first missionary to Korea, Robert J. Thomas, was ordained on June 4, 1863, at a little church in Hanover, Wales. He and his wife left in July, sent by the London Missionary Society, arriving at Shanghai, China. His wife died soon after arrival. In 1866, having evangelized for a few months in Korea and learning the language, Thomas rode the American ship, General Sherman, along the Taedong River (where the capital of North Korea is today). The Sherman became grounded on a sandbar. The Korean soldiers on shore were suspicious and scared. They boarded the ship waving long, flashing knives. When Thomas saw that he was going to be killed, he held out the Korean Bible to them saying, "Jesus, Jesus." His head was cut off. Twenty-five years after Thomas' death, someone discovered a little guest house in this area with some strange wallpaper. The paper had Korean characters printed on it. The owner of the house explained that he had used the pages of this book do paste on the wall to preserve the writing. Not only the owner, but many of the guests would come in and stay to "read the walls." This was the Bible that Thomas had given to his murderers. Today, it is said that South Korea is over 50% Christian. The largest church in the world is in Korea. I believe it because the heart and boldness of Robert Thomas that paved the way for others to carry the gospel to that land. He was a man not afraid to give his life so others would have a chance to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. 4HisGlory, Liam

Monday, March 14, 2005

Im Back (Weekend Update)

Yep returned from my travellings for the weekend... ..Short update - Crazy week this week, with an exam on Wednesday (feel free 2 pray, I will be!) - Big Essay - Course Project to get on with The Weekend was great..we spent an day and an evening with guys from Fusion, I had some interesting convo's and great teaching from Rodger Ellis who leads the Revs stuff down in Chichester (ill be blogging when I have time or a heart surge about some awesome revelation that came up through this). Also heard about vacancy in One Hundred Hours in Sept for a Bass Player (tempting but a pipe dream really). It was also great just to chill with some other students, hear their vision and see old friends like Colin Hewitt, Joy and Christa Lyth. Edinburgh Ive decided, though a beautiful city runs on its own time zone as we missed 2 busses home!...can you believe it. Church on Sunday, rockin' as ever, great friends to chill and live life with.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Bye for the weekend

Well Im away now for the weekend to Edinburgh for a Fusion meet up (Dunfermline for Scottish people), so enjoy yourselves

Heres some cool tool I just discovered, its a great idea but a bit complex to set up, well maybe I just dont have the attention span. But another interesting fact it to see the spread of international websites, Though the places with the most websites weren't really a surprise to me

A massive geographically based search engine type thing, basically see what websites are based in your area, or other for that matter!

Thursday, March 10, 2005

My 20th in retrospect

Well my Birthday yesterday was really a great day for me....(life is dandy when your world can be small for a day, self indulgent?..probably)
Yesterday turned into a great birthday, I got a really great collection of cards signed from guys from church in cornwall, a some really great notes, letters and essays within cards from people today and yesterday, feeling loved is a good feeling!... ...but yesterday started with a lie in and skipping lectures ooops!...but the I had lunch with Claire (whose bithday it is tommorow!) and my first gift of the day a creme egg which was used a great dessert to lunch...
then I went off for a not so great football match, reminding me I definatly didnt grow up on football like everyone else who seemed to be playing, I let in some terrible goals to the great displeaure of my team mates, unfortunatly I wasnt taking quite as seriously as them and had a wee chuckle when they went in...not advised to anybody else who decides to play football for fun, that concept just dosent exist in scotland!....but anyway I redeemed myself if only slightly with 3 cracking saves in desperation at the end of the match.
From there I went to SOUL but check out my other post for the lo-down on that!... After Football I went to do some washing, Oh the fun of becoming 20, and then ended up having Pizza and watching the Village a film with a great twist in which is one of my favourites from ther last year and was even sweeter the 4th with Craig and Hannah.
After that I was quite tired @ 9ish and had planned to go to the bobbin (the local student pub) for a quiet drink with my friend Ben who was watching the football in there. I got in and we watched the very last part of the footy and he said lets pop back to mine for a quiet drink, I wasnt really up for it coz I was thinking of texting him before I got into the pub anyway to say I was just going to get an early night, feeling Id had an impressivly sensible 20th birthday and was content in my maturity. When we got close to his house I said "lets go over to the Pittodrie (an old man pub we'd gone for a chat and defrag the same time the week before) but he insisted he wanted to drop some stuff off in his flat, anyway to cut the long story short I got in there and a bunch of guys jumped out on me for some contorted but fun birthday party, where Graham played me my favourite un-owned album all night and Ben scarily danced, Dave rambunctiously jumped on me, Frazer joked, Ross and Phil laughed with me about Family Guy, so all in all it was a great night, and I felt real blessed to have such great friends after being up here for only 5/6 months.
So there it Birthday, here comes the 20's I Pray it'll be a decade of Action in my life in response to the Cross and the continual learning of what that demands as a response from my life...
note of credit Andrew did a great little photo blog the other day which inspired the look of this one, but I set this one apart with black and white film grain filters, you've got to love Adobe Photoshop anyway hope you enjoyed!...


After Football yesterday I went to SOUL for our soul@soul/emergent discipleship/unnamed meeting thing, Andy couldnt make it due to some emergency that I havent heard from him since!...but Stanton, the UCCF worker for Aberdeen came and lent his knowledge, with Claire and Ross endearing the conversation with their thoughts. Check it out Stanton enjoyed it so much especially because of his out of body experience exclusivly captured below!..hehe

We basically looked at how we can be like Jesus today which started with looking at contemporary pastoral methodology in contrast to Jesus' example methodology, this then led into a discussion about our perception of God in Anthropromorhic terms eg. seeing him as too much like us and not with the understanding that he has an "otherness". Also we looked at what it means to be "imitators of Christ", how literally we take that, and then we concluded with Stantons thoughts (which were extremly interesting to me, and which I have been thinking of since) about Churches and having mission statements and this being a sign that we view church as very much an end to a means whereas in reality church may actually be the end, and this ties into the platonic/greek thought thing brought up in renogotiating the church contract: The Life and Death of the 21st Century Church - James Thwaites, which Im now hopefully basing my Popular Spirituality in Contemporary Western Culture Coursework on (which constitues 50% of my grade) I am batting a couple of ideas round for my research title/focus, so vote now!..through the comments system that is

  • "21st Century Church and its attempts to connect with previosuly unchurched cultures - Contemporary models of inclusivity in the church"
  • "Is Church being re-invigorated in the 21st Century or are 21st Century Christians attempting to ressusitate a long dead model of Spirituality"
  • "Moving into the 21st Century models of Christian Community - Are there inevitably Problems with past Church baggage inhibiting new ideals?"
My preference is the 2nd to be honest because its broader...but vote now!

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

My (yeah I suck at post titles)

Well Ive decided not to really do much for my birthday (first sign of old age at 20!) today but its turned out to be a really relational day which is my favourite type so it could be very cool anyway! Im skipping my lectures today which is a bit heinous but I can catch up....I slept in as a present to myself though now I really wish id just started the day but nevermind. Im having coffee this morning...Having lunch, playing football, going to SOUL for the "conversation" meeting and then out at 9 with Ben for a nice quiet pint. It was cool to get a Happy Birthday Post from Sam (awesome new title!) this morning, cheers bro I was stoked. Well have a good day guys, Oh yeah and give me some feedback on the last 5 posts if you have the time to check them through and comment on them. These are the most recent photos of me for all of you in cornwall who might think Im running around wearing a kilt, but anyway heres pics of me doing my 3 most favouritist things!...
seeing friends
Playing Guitar
Chilling with a Byrnesy Americano

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

A Cry of the Heart

Well Ive posted like nobodys business today but I have done a good bit of Uni which is good but now I have to have dinner and go to work...heinous!...Anyway Ive posted some stuff which Id love to get comment about so check it out below (@ Byrnesys Blabberings if your RSS Reading this) Anyway the title of the post I hear you cry, yep well this was refreshment to me today, I resonate with a good part of this and may well adapt it to my uses later on, when I can express my current restlessness more eloquently, but for now read this, it refreshes the soul to hear people talk like this. Also I read and commented on this post by Eric Keck today about Daughters a classis John Mayer song. Radical Jesus Thoughts by Mike Todd below 2005/03/radical_jesus.html

To Stay the same We have to Change

I noticed that statement on Maggi Dawn's blog today under a book she'd contributed to called "The Post Evangelical Debate" (1997) It got me thinking "To Stay the same we have to change". In the last week or so Ive definatly had a shift in my thought towards emergent movements, and have been thinking in relation to those movements about my base doctrines (On Christ the solid rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand, An Old Hymn) and reminded myself thats its always the methodology that changes, in short to communicate and to live the gospel We Have to change because the minuite we stop changing is the minuite we adopt a church culture, of security. This is a difficult thing to do, when we dont try and pin things, concepts, methodologies down it takes the un-mentioned ownership of ministry out of our hands, but I think we can be assured it places it firmly in Gods hands. I was thinking today in relation to this, using contemporary modes of communication and modes of living....if Jesus was around today, what would he say to his disciples in a text message, How does Discipleship work here in the 21st Century? Answers on a postcard or alternativly on the comments section!....(WWJS?) What would Jesus Send??

No Longer

Today is offically my last day as a teenager!...Tommorw I enter the 20' use the comments system below to let me know what you wish you'd done before you left the teens!....and the best will be done tonight! Anyway more boring stuff is that I found a new + MSN RSS button thanks to FeedBurner Also worked out that if your on Haloscan you can set up your comments as an RSS feed and it comes in like a post everytime you get a comment so no need to go scrolling down the website anymore for comment numbers! Because of my work at Uni Ive given up on some of my reading list temporarily but Ive added books I want to read section. Tommorow, My Birthday should also mark the 3000th Visitor here so if you think its you scroll to the bottom of the page press the "Print screen" Button and send me the pic and Ill think up some awesome prize (well the awesomeness will be from my perspective) Anyway have a great day out there in Blog Land I have to run to a lecture....4HisGlory

Monday, March 07, 2005

Some Quotes for you...

They made me think in line with some parts of my life im thinking and grappling with today: COMMUNITY - Thanks to Wanderer of the North "Community is a terrible place, a place where our limitations and egoisms are revealed to us. When we begin to live full time with others we discover our poverty and our weakness, our inability to get on with others...our mental and emotional blocks...our frustrations and jealousies...." --Jean Vanier BEING JESUS - Eugene Peterson in Christianity Today from Arlen "How do we meet the need? Do we do it in Jesus' way, or do we do it the Wal-Mart way? Spirituality is not about ends or benefits or things; it's about means. It's about how you do this. How do you live in reality? So, how do you help all these people? The needs are huge. Well, you do it the way Jesus did it. You do it one at a time. You can't do gospel work, kingdom work in an impersonal way." Eugene Peterson MAKING A REAL DIFFERENCE ‘It may be a drop in the Ocean but the ocean is made up of drops.’ Mother Teresa LOCAL CHURCH - Eugene Peterson in Christianity Today from Arlen "One thing that I think is characteristic of me is I stay local...while all this glitter and image of spirituality is going around, I feel quite indifferent to it, to tell you the truth. And I'm somewhat suspicious of it because it seems to be uprooted, not grounded in local conditions, which are the only conditions in which you can live a Christian life." Eugene Peterson WORLD VIEW - Thanks to Where is Raed ? "the West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact, non-Westerners never do." Samuel P. Huntington LOVE "I have found the paradox that if I love until it hurts, then there is no more hurt, only more love." Mother Teresa

Life Update

Well heres the boring posts not necessarily pre-meditated which aren't going to enrich you but may encourage you to think of some things. These are the posts which are my life, the accountability posts that Andrew Jones and I were taking about, the ones which validate or contextualise the more formal ones! Anyway so much blab, ridiculous stuff!
Spent a community weekend up at church as ever, more of the youth made decisions last night which was awesome, and Stu has written and set up "closer" a evening at his and Emelie's house to go through what that means and how to live it out. Which is really great (im dying to use another word but I cant think of it). Now Im home anyway and the week ahead is hardcore!....2 Reports lots of reading, 1 big essay and an exam for next wednesday to revise for!

Also I was thinking about nature, I dont think Ill blog about it more than the next thought so I wont promise to, but I took this photo this weekend, not anything particularly great about it, but you dont realy get these types of views in cornwall, it too hilly, but there was something barren, and very North East about it, I love the way the pylons go straight into the distance, the environment there is how I feel at home, in s a strange way I think we get outside of our houses, out of the cities and we go home, to nature, to emptiness, I was reading a book for a paper I have to write this week, it a philosophy book and it quoted this: "...the religion that languishes in crowded cities or steals shame faced to hide itself in dim churches flourishes greatly, fillinf the soul with a solemn joy. Face to face with nature on a vast hill at eventide, who does not feel himself near to the unseen." A solemn joy, a knowledge which bring contentment, its a facet of what I was talking about in "Peace that Passes all Understanding". Anyway other than that, Im back to city living for 2 weeks now, as next weekend it seems like im going down to Dunfermline for a Fusion Weekend, which should be pretty cool, some good people speaking and some good friends going! So Im off now for a well over due shower and then working hard in the library.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Women of God

This a photo of (from left) me, John and Mikaela, John and I had an awesome time with Mikaela, Meegan and Amy over the summer, and it was great to pop down to St Andrews to see Mikaela the other day, have some coffee and chill (if only for 40mins).

Anyway I was thinking of the girls just because I read Meegan's post (on her sisters blog) about Pride etc. And while John and I were driving down to see Mikaela we were just real thankful for the friendship of them, and the life we'd spent with them. And I guess recently I guess Ive been really blessed for God to give me loads of "sisters" (and im not saying that in a very christian way, in just having a great non-romance deep relationship with them). I think as I was growing up Beth Gillespie was the first girl (not in my biological family) who was just such a great sister to me and for me. Awesome women of God Ive also been honoured to know have been, Miriam, Bursey, and more recently its been great to spend time and really love the gap year girls (Jane, Lindsay and Rachael). So right now Im praying for these great women of God that they will become Women of Purity, Passion and Purpose (OOh I feel a Christian Best seller coming on!)

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Peace that passes all understanding

What is the peace that passes all understanding, Im not going to quote great books or theologians, there are times to do that but right now I'll just post something I wrote in THAT place of peace...On a re-read its seems very airy, but its rooted in a knowledge of Jesus and his saving grace, which without I couldnt hope to come to this point. (these are a few slightly contrasting translations and para-phrases I think are helpful to cross read: KEEP READING Philippians 4:7 (New International Version) 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7 (The Message) 7Before you know it, a sense of God's wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It's wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. Philippians 4:7 (Contemporary English Version) 7Then, because you belong to Christ Jesus, God will bless you with peace that no one can completely understand. And this peace will control the way you think and feel. I like to think that these moments are tastes of heaven, pure thoughts, a silence of the soul that knows that nothing you can say can change the moment....soppy maybe but this is my transparency "When I disconnect from my physical reality*, I find it goods or bad, Im not sure. Its comfortable but indulgently so, the "peace that passes all understanding" is a contentment, not escapism, something which sees the world with its good, bad and ugly and says "He knows, it will come to the best". Waking up from this transcendent state of freedom I realise though that when all my physical needs are well catered for I have the luxury of searcing for transcendent peace." *Im taking about after a movie, a long play, a good piece of music which removes you from thew chaos and bustle of the day, not some meditation or anything.

Gmail Invites

I said when I got them Id post them for all to see! -> Here they are (UPDATED->)49 Gmail invites, Just mail me @ with the subject "invite me to gmail so bad right now" and Ill send one straight over.


Internet Identity

In thinking of Church models in Aberdeen, Stobie and I discussed the use of a community blog to virtualize a spiritual conversation and network the city more efficiently but we had reservations due to what we believe is an unhelpful facet of the Internet, basically its ability to be usurped in creaing false identities, this we percieved to be completly unhelpful when moving towards meaningful community as it dosen't create a transparent accountability with which, the problem with this is that People can be who they say they are, and not be seen in their fullness. READ MORE Also it can create a separated life virtually on the net that dosent necessarily exist in the natural, which at the end of the day is the place is where we all havwe to live and ultimatly where the rubber of our lives hit the road of our journeys with Jesus. I've grown up knowing loads of those kids who endlessly play computer games, watch movies and spend forever on the internet. The last one I was guilty of, this I believe is an outworking of escapism, where people are dying to leave their lives and become their hero in a computer game, or movie. For us to impact our wider communities we need to engage with them. Anyway I brought this up with Andrew and he came with some good thoughts: Firstly as far as blogging theology etc. blogs are actually much more accountable as it is not simply a collection someones best thoughts but you can see the process of thoughts with their sources and influences while also discovering what type of pizza they has had that night. Also the idea that all life can be lived in the physical is not necessarily conducive with city living (something Ive failed to see from living in a village for so long) Life obviously does have to happen in reality but if we use new media as a communication tool not life then it works, Andrew used the example of Pastors/church leaders could not do their job without a telephone just saying "thinking of you etc" and thats not the reality of the relationship its merely a tool to complete the end purpose. So while blogs cannot be true meaningful community they can, he said be a tool which enables them to work in a new city space. In conclusion, this was one of the smaller topics we talked about Ill be blogging other things I learned, gleaned and realised although it was a short time with Andrew, we were challenged and though we may not go in completly the way Andrew suggested it was good to get a more radical mindset to make sure we weren't settling for mediocrity. Plenty of bating each other, good banter about our geographical origins and good food, a good night!


Today what a day...Im exhausted but ive had a good day. This morning I had a confusing lecture on Amos where I just couldnt connect to what was going on. Then I played football with the guys from my flat and some guys from CU. This afternoon/evening I spent with Andrew Jones, was cool to see him again and definatly made Andrew Stobart and I re-think our vision for Aberdeen. Other things it brought up which Ill blog about soon where: - Blogging Accountability - EmergANT or Emerging - 4th Gen Blogging (although I wont fully until he does) - neo-fundamentalism Anyway Andrew was tired so I let him sleep after a fine meal of Gammon Steak, potato, carrots and peas made by the most excellent stobie. Also I got my camera back so Ive camera'd all of this yet I am so used not having it I left it with Ben at his flat. We (Ben and I) went out for a beer in a local pub, and I got to talk out some of my thoughts and then just generally talk about stuff and life, always a pleasure After that I was walking home past Claire's house and stopped off for some great banter and good convo's during which her fish died, it was very traumatic but we are doing well!...;)

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Korn Guitarist becomes Christian

To be honest I expect this to be Christian bandwagon in the same as Passion etc.. but I cant say Im not stoked, I was never into Korn even though I was in that whole scene for a while but I dont think this can be anything but a good thing For more info check these:

Tonight Im Praying..

By St Augustine: "Watch O Lord with those who wake, or watch, or weep tonight, and give Your Angels and Saints charge over those who sleep. Tend Your sick ones, dear Lord, rest Your weary ones, bless Your dying ones, soothe Your suffering ones, pity Your afflicted ones, shield Your joyous ones, and all for Your Love's sake. Amen." Found @ World of Sven

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Long time no chat!

Well I've been silent for the last week or so which since the start hasn't really happened but mainly it was 2 issues, John and Jute my good friends coming up to Aberdeen (Johns blogging some good stuff check it out) and also my broadband has been down for the whole time and I was pretty reluctant to blog at Uni. Anyway in other News....I had a great weekend spending time with friends and God, which really (sounds cheesy) but reminded me of who I am, I know that drawing close to God reminds us of our purpose and the ways in which he's fashioned us, also seeing John helped me remind myself of my heritage which spiritually obviously is based in Jesus but also has a home in Cornwall and a part of my growth (and its continuation) is thanks to the Gillespie Clan! Also just was stoked to be blogrolled by Brad over at 21st Century Reformation, which is a great blog, so heres a link back. Ive had loads of stuff to think about so hopefully some of it can encourage you in your adventures. Somebody said to me the other day at Uni "Oh I found your website, you have alot of time on your hands" well, to be honest thats a bit ironic as I really dont update this thing as much as the links and referrers I recieve but I set it up to keep in contact with guys in Cornwall with whats going on up here as Im in University in Aberdeen, a good few miles, (about as far as you can go in the UK, and incidently the furtherest University in the UK from my home!) But basically its emerged (ha I know you can see where this is going!) to be something where Im just commenting on my adventures in understanding my life in relation to Jesus and learning what it means to live in community and do that! Exciting stuff is moving along with that actually as Stobie and I meet with Andrew Jones tommorow to discuss some emergent discipleship models for Aberdeen. Update soon! Until then check out these great people (who incidently link me..hehe..but also write stuff that encourages this adventure Im on):
Brad - 21st Century Reformation