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“It’s a beautiful moment when somebody wakes up to this reality, when they realize God created them so other people could enjoy them, not just endure them.” Donald Miller

 

Scary Close is the first book I read this year.

It’s tagline is “Dropping the Act and Finding True Intimacy.”  It is a book about the risk involved in choosing to impress fewer people and connect with more, about the freedom that comes when we stop acting and start loving. It is a story about knocking down old walls to create a healthy mind, a strong family, and a satisfying career.

It is a scary read.  It is a beautiful read.

At the end of it I felt a bit naked and exposed.  I felt a stronger call to be more authentic and to rediscover who I really am and to be that.  Not that I’ve been hiding, but that there was more to be and that I am a work in progress.  God is at work in each one of us, we are His masterpiece, created on purpose with a purpose.

It challenged me to be more vulnerable and to love more, to not be afraid of who perhaps I really am.

“It costs personal fear to be authentic but the reward is integrity, and by that I mean a soul fully integrated, no difference between his act and his actual person. Having integrity is about being the same person on the inside that we are on the outside, and if we don’t have integrity, life becomes exhausting.”  

I ended the year feeling really stretched and somewhat peopled out, and I look at that as a symptom of something, something a little bit undefined at this stage, but it means something.

My “one word” for the year is REDISCOVER and Scary Close was the beginning of that journey, that rediscovery.  It made me ask myself questions that I dont know answers too, or even that there were questions to ask.

“I LIKE WHAT THE DANCER MARTHA GRAHAM ONCE said, that each of us is unique and if we didn’t exist something in the world would have been lost. I wonder, then, why we are so quick to conform—and what the world has lost because we have. William Blake said about Jesus that he was “all virtue and acted from impulse, not from rules.” If we are to be like him, aren’t we to speak and move and do, to act upon the world and take new ground from the forces that work against our unique genius and beauty? What if part of God’s message to the world was you? The true and real you?”

So, hello 2016.

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We have to stop striving for what we want and just be IN LOVE with Him. His love language is LOVE. His expectation is LOVE. His gift to us is LOVE in the form of favor, power, authority, and grace. So, if you’re feeling a little withered and dry inside, if you’re feeling the need to be revitalized, if you’re feeling the need to revitalize the community around you, here’s your one step program. Your one-bullet-point sermon, your one trendy plan in two words: JUST LOVE. Talk to Him like you’d talk to a good friend. Listen like you would listen to a good friend. Worship Him with gratefulness. Spend time just being with Him and see what happens. Lindsay McPhail – The Fearless Experiment

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We can’t spread life and revival without being filled with HIS LIFE and HIS REVIVAL. There are no words or works that can ever replace the POWER and MIGHT that mark the life of a person filled with the Holy Spirit. We can try to duplicate it, but all attempts will come up empty and feel like old religion. It’s easier to play a part than to actually be filled with Him. It’s easier to control a situation than to risk being broken. It’s easier to whine about what we think we deserve than to surrender what we think we need. But how we know Him is how we share Him and expose others to Him. We have to stop trying to imitate and recreate what only HE can do. We are His unique creation. He is ready to do something new, in fact he has already started…we just have to be willing to let go and believe that what He has for us is eons more extravagant than anything we could ever try to do ourselves. ~ The Fearless Experiement

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“In every block of marble i see a statue as plain as though it stood before me shaped and perfect in attitude and action. i only have to hew away the rough walls that imprison the lovely apparition to reveal it to the other eyes as mine see it.” Michelangelo

Sculpting a masterpiece doesn’t happen overnight – it’s a process that requires time and careful work. The same is true for imperfect progress. God is chiseling us, making us new – and that requires time, careful work and a great deal of grace. ~ Lysa Terkeurst

 

Start is one of those loaded words in my life.

Like CONSTANT.  and OTHERS.  (think LOST)

 

Start is a book by Jon Acuff that revolutionised the way I live and think about living.  

I loved it so much that I made it required reading for our SAS course at The River.  

 

There are only two paths in life: average and awesome. The average path is easy because all you have to do is nothing. The awesome path is more challenging, because things like fear only bother you when you do work that matters. The good news is Start gives readers practical, honest, actionable insights to be more awesome, more often.

It’s time to punch fear in the face, escape average, and do work that matters. // Jon Acuff

 

Start is a bit like a travel guide into the unknown lands of adventure.  

It gives you scaffolds as you step out into new seasons and reminds you over and over again that to grow we must start.

It kicks fear and passiveness in the butt and ignites a spark for more.

 

More begins today.

When we start anything is possible.

 

I love the ad above.  Its for a telecommunications company here in New Zealand going through a rebrand.  Starting again.

It almost mirrors some of the stages Jon talks about in START.  Learning.  Editing.  Mastering.

 

Starting is the single most greatest force in the universe.

Start your big bang.

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“The human body essentially recreates itself every six months. Nearly every cell of hair and skin and bone dies and another is directed to its former place. You are not who you were last November.”

― Donald MillerA Million Miles in a Thousand Years: What I Learned While Editing My Life

 

River Eyes Open River Touch Your World

i’m loving this new series we’re doing at our church, The RIver.  We have a TOUCH YOUR WORLD message in the morning, with an emphasis on turning our heart outwards to other people in our world and an EYES OPEN message in the evening at our 7pm service.  This week i’m preaching at 7.  Excited much and so thankful for the opportunity.

 

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ballet started yesterday!  yay!  i love our ballet teacher – she is the most positive and encouraging woman!  evangeline does so well in her class and has made some lovely friends.  this is the 3rd year this class has being together.  i take the opportunity to read and am reading CULTURE OF HONOUR by Danny Silk.  Its a required reading for SAS and so far chapt one has been awesome.  

 

 

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its our wedding anniversary on monday but we mostly celebrated last weekend as our babysitter was available then.  but its so inbetween movie season and also oscar season.  which means only meh movies or really intense movies (like 12 yrs a slave) and we weren’t really in the frame of mind for that.  in the end we rejigged our babysitter to come in the arvo and we went and saw JACK RYAN : SHADOW RECRUIT.  and loved it.  is the classic action move.  great hero.  great action.  good plot.  its based on a TOM CLANCY character.   i confess it was also lovely to in plush air conditioned surroundings at the Monteray Movie Theatre on a very hot day!

 

 

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we have entered into a new parenting phase.  we are now youth group parents.  our son started youth group last week @ The River.  and had an awesome time.  i adore our leaders and what they’re doing with the young people in East Auckland. 

 

 

and as always.  i love Jesus with all i am and all my heart and all my soul and all my days. For His glory and the building of His kingdom and the rescue of the lost.

 

 

so what are you totally loving this week?

… check out what other peeps are loving whatever day of the week it is over at MNM’s BLOG

things im loving

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In the book Outliers, author Malcolm Gladwell says that it takes roughly ten thousand hours of practice to achieve mastery in a field. How does Gladwell arrive at this conclusion? And, if the conclusion is true, how can we leverage this idea to achieve greatness in our professions?

Gladwell studied the lives of extremely successful people to find out how they achieved success. This article will review a few examples from Gladwell’s research, and conclude with some thoughts for moving forward.

You already know how Microsoft was founded. Bill Gates and Paul Allen dropped out of college to form the company in 1975. It’s that simple: Drop out of college, start a company, and become a billionaire, right? Wrong.

Further study reveals that Gates and Allen had thousands of hours of programming practice prior to founding Microsoft. First, the two co-founders met at Lakeside, an elite private school in the Seattle area. The school raised three thousand dollars to purchase a computer terminal for the school’s computer club in 1968.

A computer terminal at a university was rare in 1968. Gates had access to a terminal in eighth grade. Gates and Allen quickly became addicted to programming.

The Gates family lived near the University of Washington. As a teenager, Gates fed his programming addiction by sneaking out of his parents’ home after bedtime to use the University’s computer. Gates and Allen acquired their 10,000 hours through this and other clever teenage schemes. When the time came to launch Microsoft in 1975, the two were ready.

 

from ::: 10,000 Hours of Practice

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this would be my top ten favourite movies (that i can remember today)

some are old time favourites, such as krull, the first movie i saw on video ever, some are action, some romantic

some whimsical and some deep

but i totally love them

 

Les Miserables

Seven Brides For Seven Brothers

Defiance

Star Trek Into Darkness

Once

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol

Endless Sunshine of a Spotless Mind

Tristan & Isolde

Willow

Krull

 

special mentions: LOTR, The Hobbit (1 & 2), Star Wars (IV, V, VI), Tangled, Frozen, Dances with Wolves

 

 

so what are your favourite movies?

 

 

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l5536434_thumb1  Graham Henry – my favourite All Blacks coach

 

 

a coach helps others win by helping them to discover the knowledge, strategies, action plans, inspiration and accountability they need to excel and reach even greater levels of success. 

they:

help teammates to identify gaps in their businesses and personal lives

recognise and affirm the gifts of teammates

discover their teammates convictions and encourage them to create a vision consistent with those convictions

assist with creating plans necessary for further levels of success

keep teammates focused, passionate and on track in regard to their plans

pinpoint and assess their team’s resources

provide the fresh perspective their teammates may need to complete their goals and actions

hold teammates accountable to their commitments

 

 

as a coach we help to:

make sure they have defined their reality, to stop, think and truly asses their current situation

clarify their vision and define their goals, most people constantly react to events, people and things… and therefore are not driven by purpose

understand and address roadblocks to their vision, we are most blinded to the things that are most comfortable or familiar to us

test their thinking, opinions, and conclusions, we easily get caught up in insanity, “doing the same things over and over, but expecting different results”

establish accountability, too often people fall short by confusing intent with action

 

FROM ::: BECOMING A COACHING LEADER by Daniel Harkavy

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