26 April 2006

Rising at Easter

Chapter 20 of the Gospel of John begins "Early Sunday morning..."
I hope to kill 2 birds with one stone in this post albeit on the first item I am a week or more late.
Firstly, Easter sunrise services are terrific. No, they are essential to my commemoration of Easter. For the past 3 years I have made it a tradition to attend 1 or more. This year I only hit Bethel at 6:30 AM. As usual I took breakfast at Triumph.
Why do I enjoying waking early on Easter Sunday?
I think it has something to do with making Easter a bit different than the other 51 Sundays. Working with smaller churches it is difficult to create that kind of atmosphere. Lack of resources really becomes apparent during holidays. To avoid discouragement I blend in with one the larger congregations.
Secondly, this week marks the 90th anniverary of the Easter Rising of 1916, igniting to flames the embers of the Irish struggle for independence. Although the intent of the Rising failed to be realized (overthrow British rule) at that time, their blood (James Connolly, Seán MacDiarmada, Padraig Pearse, Joseph Mary Plunkett, Éamonn Ceannt, Thomas James Clarke and 10 others) awakened the Irish and precipitated the Irish War of Independence (1918-1921) and onward to some independence in 1921 (without the North). It's an intriguing history of events following 1916.
Well that's enough history. The dead are dead and remembered, BUT Jesus is live, his blood having covered our sins and his resurrection getting us the spoils of victory.
Slan.

14 April 2006

Wave a cross


Not much to comment on. Easter seems to have creeped upon me again. It seems like it was Christmas a few weeks ago or maybe I have bad sense of holiday.

Nevertheless have a blessed Easter!

Ah-ha...statistics

I found a lone, abandoned blog that had only one entry. I expressed a statistic that I had thought had been true- small churches win more souls. Yet we keep getting bigger. Perhaps we should just get small (and tip our hats to Steve Martin).
But do remember drugs and church planting do not mix.
Slan.

07 April 2006

Dicontented?

Probably the one thing that will hound the current generation is success. What is it? How do I know I have attained it? Does it even exist?
Most positively Christians will face the dilemma even more.
Here's a decent article, Divine Discontentment, from the Hundredfold Ministries that I find challenging concerning success. In fact this article is support enough for my theory on invisibility.
Slan.

Night of the train


Can you hear that thunder in the distance?
Like a train inside of downtown.

Perhaps one my favorite sounds is a train in the distance.

06 April 2006

The Red Rive preparing to bank-burst


Ice thawing on the river
Spring renounces
The winter shiver

Flood Fest

The Red River (of the North) has the habit of exceeding its capacity each spring. The only people who seem to care are those who live on the flood plains. However this year flood watching has become a spectator sport.
The Red crested sometime on 5 April and people were out and about around the dike and Main Avenue bridge to see it unseen at this time of year. It was like the flood was some kind of disturbing entertainment. I liken this response to the time Big Bird decided to greet Hurricane Bob numerous years ago (1991) as it hit the Northeast US. The irony to that was Sesame Street later did a storyline involving a hurricane hitting the neighborhood and destroying Big Bird's nest. I am sounding like a portent?
Perhaps a festival could be made of this natural event. It would bring people to the river perhaps generate revenue and if needs be there is a ready made workforce for sandbagging.

04 April 2006

Hungry?


There was a thin man from Killarney
Who fasted a fortnight 'for the big party
But he saw a sweet pie
Oh my, oh my
Then made it his sop most hearty

Ould past tymes in Eire


It's been over a year now since I stepped on Irish soil. It is a fact I left part of me in a Dublin airport restroom just before going to Knock. Feeling deathly sick I regurgitated much of breakfast, lunch, and perhaps my soul into the toilet. Was this a portent? Nonetheless, I wish not to relive that moment. There is more good craic to recall- worship night at St. Vincent DePaul, ALPHA retreat, marvelous jaunts in the country, a night out in Westport, travelling the twisting roads along the coast to Mulraney, dancing in the kitchen, traversing paddocks to get to a ruined church and a castle.
It's has been a rocky road since then and I only feel that I am just recovering. I have grown wiser and patient although I feel like an exhile. There are thoughts that I was just an interloper with ulterior motives. Risk casts for destiny but often catches heartache. I attest to that.
Yet was it worth it?
Yes.
I am not finished with Ireland and I bet she is not finished with me either.
Slan.