Friday, December 8, 2017

Trav's Day

Just playing with some creativity here - but though it was worth posting ... also, there's some great thoughts on creativity from Richard about halfway through!


Saturday, November 18, 2017

Love isn't Love

I've said "I love you" so many times to my wife.

Mainly because I just do.

I think she's amazing.

I choose her everyday.

I can't help but join her in celebrating.

I can't help but grieve with her in loss.


Sometime I say "I love you" to divert her attention away from my failures.

Sometimes I say "I love you" so I can get what I want.

That's when love isn't love - when it isn't coming out of a place of truth.

And it seems to me that truth cannot be solely found in what I'm feeling at the time.

Love is Love

"I'm just feeling so grieved"

The man stood in our shop and beleaguered the point of his sadness over the YES vote winning this week.

He was too loud, too conservative and too bigoted for my liking.

But there was no doubting his sadness.

Here he is, a man in his 60s, shaped by a worldview that upholds the sanctity of marriage as the cornerstone for a functioning society.

Even though society had long disregarded his own perspective, at least the law still upheld the traditional Christian practice of a heterosexual monogamous union.

Not anymore.

And he was deeply grieved.

If love is love, and the expectation is to accept people no matter what their story or preferences, then what does love look like for the loud conservative bigot?

I didn't vote

I couldn't.

Out of good conscience on religious grounds I couldn't support the view that the definition of marriage should be changed in Australian law.

Out of good conscience on relational grounds I couldn't support what the no campaign represented and the inadvertent damage it brought to the name of Jesus.

I'm glad that people I love can celebrate their sense of acceptance in our nation.

I have questions over what this means for future generations.

I want to get busy telling the story of Jesus and seeing what He can accomplish in people's lives.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

when a house of cards falls ...

HOUSE OF CARDS: a structure, situation, or institution that is insubstantial, shaky, or in constant danger of collapse.

The irony is hard to ignore.

In the wake of Harvey Weinstein's inexhaustibly public downfall, the accusations toward Kevin Spacey, his ill-conceived response, and subsequent string of sexual assault allegations have seen an untouchably professional reputation come crumbling down.

No doubt, the choices of individuals to mistreat others is simply abhorrent.  As is the seeming institutionalised culture of threatened shame of those who are victims.

It's just horrible.

Enough, it would seem, to bring the entertainment industry to its knees.

Unless we choose to continue to ignore the cornerstone of this elaborate house of cards structure.

The currency of sexualisation, objectification, and the denigration of human dignity carries untold value in the modern-day art of story-telling.

Could it be that our thirst for power or pleasure is not quenched, but enflamed through the trading of this currency?  Where our consumption of stories which so reduce the value of our humanity, are actually fostering the horror of Weinstein and Spacey in our own minds and hearts?

Could it be that Weinstein, Spacey and others are living as residents of the house of cards that they, and society at large, have built for ourselves to live in?

Could it be that the magnitude of their demise is enough for us to identify the cornerstone of this house, and remove it entirely?

I suspect it's been dislodged slightly.

I'm hoping for justice and healing for all who have posted #metoo.

I long for us humans to find our identity, purpose, sexuality and dignity in a grander story than our world is telling us.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

the reason why

I'm coming off the back of 4 days on the Sunshine Coast at my third and final intensive with "Arrow Leadership".

One of the cool challenges we were given was to give the heart of the reason why our organisation exists - this has always been hard for me - but this is what I came up with:

There is an ancient story that speaks of a deep origin.

This story describes the ache of human separation and brokenness, and longing.

This story reveals the relentless pursuit of inexhaustible love, unparalleled sacrifice, and unexpected victory.

This story resolves in hope-filled purpose and flourishing.

This is the story of God.

There is an emerging generation who are mostly UNENGAGED with this story.
The communities who carry this story are largely UNCERTAIN in how to change that.

AccessTheStory longs to step into this space.

"arrow" reflection

Last night I was given the brilliant opportunity to share some reflections on my experience of the Arrow Leadership Course I've been a part of this year.

Standing before 20 other peers in leadership was a little terrifying to be honest, but it was great to be able to share some of my experience:

Intensive One led me to a FOUNTAIN - Back in March we spent 4 days unpacking the ideas of INTEGRITY and SELF DECEPTION with a focus on our personal leadership.  I was drawn to the need for me to have my strength regularly refreshed in what God notices about me, and since then I've been practising the discipline of regular journaling through parts of the Scriptures.   This has proven to be a fountain of personal refreshment.

Intensive Two led me to RECEIVING - In June my cohort of leaders from faith-based organisations met in Geelong, and we faced the results from a 360 degree review.  Ten people we each worked with filled in a survey regarding our leadership behaviours ... I don't know what I was expecting, but the responses I received were super-affirming.  Interestingly I quickly slipped into "deflect" mode, and I knew I needed to allow myself to sit in the responses given, and receive the encouragement.  If others saw me in a positive light as a leader, then maybe I need to drop the false humility and let me see myself in the same way.

Intensive Three led me to the HORIZON - the focus of this last week on the Sunshine Coast has been around leading an organisation.  Amidst the 'information overload' (at least for me) on strategic planning and governance and risk management, there were some very helpful gems that apply to AccessTheStory.  More encouragingly, I found myself in the midst of other expert practitioners, and in the midst of some great conversations.  One of those had to do with 'strategic horizons', and as I considered the embryonic nature of my own organisation, I was challenged to consider what I need to do now that the next generation of leaders can steward the fruit of the investment being made now.  The Horizon might not be the only place for harvest, but I'm looking for who is around me now - who is being raised up for the harvest on the horizon?

One of the guys in my cohort prayed for me today, "That he might see an abundant fountain bubbling up now, and turning into a stream that flows out all the way to the horizon."

That's a pretty cool prayer.