Briarpatch Gospel

briarI have just finished reading this book by Shayne Wheeler, a Pressie minister from the USA. He is a church planter with the Presbyterian Church in America. He writes of his experience of planting a church in an area where many have been hurt by the church. The title is all about what it means to follow Jesus in the thorny areas of life. He wrestles with being faithful to Scripture and loving your neighbour. He pushes us as evangelical Christians to step out of our comfort zones.

In the Briarpatch Gospel, Shayne challenges us to stop leading safe, sanitized Christian lives and to step out into the real world – the briarpatch – and to follow in Jesus’ footsteps.

Shayne encourages us to build transparent relationships with people who look, think, and believe differently than we do. He reassures us that we don’t have to have all of the answers to the questions people might ask us about suffering, about life, and about faith – it’s okay for us to grapple with the tough questions just like everyone else.

He reminds us that we’re not here to judge others – we’re here to love others, even as we stand firm in biblical truth.

I highly recommend this book. Read it if you want to think through the issues of how to lovingly proclaim the gospel in a world that needs to hear of the gospel of grace.


school chaplains

The decision of the Australia High Court today has probably opened up a hornets nest. This appeal against school chaplains although motivated by excluding religion and specifically christian influence in government schools, has now got the complainant probably more than he bargained for. To the cheers of the greens it was found that the federal government did not have the power to provide such funding to provide chaplains in state schools. Although not struck out on religious grounds, and more on the grounds of what power the government has. If the greens are consistent then they should also be saying that funding for cultural, sporting and even “environmental” activities by non government organisations should also be stopped. interesting days ahead

high court and school chaplains


Well I better bring this blog out hibernation. I can’t believe it’poster 12 months since my last post. Fromnext week this blog will be active again


Dawkins under fire

This is an interview of Richard Dawkins by Ben Stein. Dawkins usually manages to run rings around most interviewers, but he seems to be under some pressure here. What does Dawkins really think about the origins of the universe. He seems a little confused

Best Coffee in Sydney

The debate where the best coffee can be found Is it Sydney or  Melbourne? I have had both good and bad coffee in both cities. While melbourne has long held claim to be the food and coffee capital. Sydney is now giving them a run for their money. There is a growing number of local roasters in Sydney producing quality beans. One of the best is Campos in Newtown. There beans are increasingly used in cafes across sydney. For the home roaster you can get good quality green beans, and there roasted beans are excellent quality and value from Interested on what others think.