Friday, July 16, 2010

Are you Free?

Are you free? Or do orphans of the AIDS epidemic bind our conscience and does our apathy chain us as slaves? Weird question, eh?

For English I am reading literature with my 14 year old son on Courage. We read the following poem by James Russel Lowell  who wrote this poem 20 years before the  American Civil War....he was a staunch abolitionist! As I read and reread and reread this poem to get my head around it all - it crossed my we do not have many slaves to bother our conscience as this poem suggests it should but how many Aids orphans are there to make you chained to the slavery of currant peers in Western Christian circles, where it is common for us to grow fat and rich while saying, " we can't really make a difference to all those orphans, can we? How many did you say....something like 147 million AIDS orphans?" 

I believe that if every single Christan gave financially and every single capable Christian made sacrifices and gave a home and a family to a child or more, we could indeed solve the world wide problem of Aids orphans...instead we chose to continue our luxurious lives dragging with us the heavy chains of slavery.  If our own country won't let us adopt, we can support locals in another country who can adopt.

"But I am not rich," you say. To which I reply, "If you have a computer, running water, food on you table every night, clothing in your cupboard, electricity, a roof over your head to keep out the rain and blankets on your bed, a job/an income -then you are rich and in enough to help an orphan!

Are the history books going to write down that we were the ones who stood up to fight for the well being of these children as abolitionists fought against slavery or are we going to stand by and watch them all die, without Mummies and Daddies, food and clothing and the very basics of life's necessities? Are we free enough to be moving our churches to touch these children? Or will the chains of laziness, apathy, inadequacy excuses etc  hold us unmoving, until it is too late? 

Are you a slave - not being prepared to take a minority stand and speak out for the fallen and the weak? I could never say it better than James Russel Lowell himself....even if he said it in 1843 over a differnt matter! May we look heavenward on this matter and know the heart of our Heavenly Father. If you don't know where to start, take a look here I plan to put more information on my blog about works in South Africa too over the next few weeks! 

Are we free, or does apathy make you a slave as you look away from orphans needs?

You cannot change the world but you can make a world of difference to one child! 

Stanzas On Freedom

By James Russel Lowell

Men! whose boast it is that ye
Come of fathers brave and free,
If there breathe on earth a slave,
Are ye truly free and brave?
If ye do not feel the chain,
When it works a brother's pain,
Are ye not base slaves indeed,
Slaves unworthy to be freed?

Women! who shall one day bear
Sons to breathe New England air,
If ye hear, without a blush,
Deeds to make the roused blood rush
Like red lava through your veins,
For your sisters now in chains,--
Answer! are ye fit to be
Mothers of the brave and free?

Is true Freedom but to break
Fetters for our own dear sake,
And, with leathern hearts, forget
That we owe mankind a debt?
No! true freedom is to share
All the chains our brothers wear
And, with heart and hand, to be
Earnest to make others free!
They are slaves who fear to speak
For the fallen and the weak;

They are slaves who will not choose
Hatred, scoffing, and abuse,
Rather than in silence shrink
From the truth they needs must think;
They are slaves who dare not be
In the right with two or three.

Monday, July 12, 2010

An absolutely, totally and competely must listen to....

We had a wonderful weekend away at Mapleton Camp site, joining up with a number of Reformed Churches (both Reformed Baptists  and Presby Reformed Churches in greater Brisbane with people from as far afield as Towmsville, Auckland, Tasmainia and Sydney.) It was so good to catch up with old friends whom we have not seen for a long time! when we first came to AUstralia 6 years ago we went to this camp within days of arriving, just before Timothy was born. This time we especially enjoyed going there and coming home, we also enjoyed the Glass House Mountains.  Malany Cheese factory, Landsborough Art Gallery and the Montville craft shops, the clock shop (with it's grandfather clocks and cuckoo clocks and weather clocks!)
and the chocolate shop and the African shop being the most interesting.)  We also stopped at Kings beach and Shelly Beach, in Coulaoundra to delay home coming in order to miss the crazy traffic jams from Sunshine Coast to Brisbane on Sunday afternoons. 

I have come home feeling refreshed and inspired, by far the most invigorating aspect of our few days away was the spiritual food! 

How absolutely brilliant good preaching inspires, encourages and moves the soul, it changes, moulds, and restores. And the good thing is you can listen to the same sermons online even though you weren't there! So take a look at 'Enduring Faith' and PLEASE do have a listen to some very good sermons - you take time to get fit, feed your face to nourish your body, relax with a cuppa coffee - take time to feed your soul - it's worth it!  You will come away refreshed and invigorated and inspired. See