Sorry for the lack of posts here recently, but tomorrow we leave this house and Sunday we fly back to Japan, so we’ve been quite busy trying to finish everything off here and pack everything up.
But yesterday I had the chance to have a really interesting conversation with someone. They’re part of a organisation which is having a bit of a revolving door problem at the moment: new workers are entering, sticking around for a couple of years and then leaving. The older workers seem to be quite happy, but the younger ones don’t seem to be able to settle. The organisation is haemorrhaging talent, and I’m not even sure it knows it. Read more about Everything must change
Over on Facebook, Jason made a very perceptive comment about my last post. He suggested that my section about FPTP being horrible disproportional was unfair, because the disproportionality between votes and seats is a function of having single-member constituencies, rather than the voting system.
But is it, really? Of course, we can test this. Read more about More on AV and proportionality
On May 5th the UK will have a referendum on a change of voting system. I will be voting for a change, because I think the order-of-preference voting (technically, the Alternative Vote or AV system) makes more sense than the existing winner-takes-all system. (technically, First Past The Post or FPTP) Here’s why.
AV Doesn’t Throw Away Information
So I sent messengers to them saying, “I am engaged in an important work, and I am unable to come down. Why should the work come to a halt when I leave it to come down to you?”
Here’s my new toy: a searchable database of articles, books, theses and so on related to missiology in Japan, with links where possible. Please let me know if you have any additions or recommendations for the database. Read more about Bibliography of Japanese missiology
In the first year of the reign of Cyrus, king of Persia, to fulfill the word of the LORD spoken through Jeremiah, the LORD stirred up the soul of Cyrus, king of Persia, and he sent a proclamation throughout his kingdom by messenger and also in writing. The message said:
“Thus says Cyrus, king of Persia: All kingdoms of the earth have been given to me by the LORD God of heaven, and He has appointed me to build for Himself a temple in Jerusalem. (which is in Judah)
A generally-excellent sermon I heard on Sunday (sadly not on th’Interweb yet) made an interesting point that stuck with me, quoting from Colossians 3:13. (“Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another”) The preacher said that forgiveness deals with the problem; bearing with one another is what you do until the problem is dealt with.
And that makes a lot of sense. God did not merely move on from the problem of sin, or sweep it under the carpet, or pretend it wasn’t really a problem any more. He did something about it, something painful and costly which dealt with the problem. Forgiveness has a point of resolution to it.
Now consider a situation where one person declares to others that they need to “forgive and move on” - forgive him and move on, that is. Read more about On forgiveness and moving on
The LORD God of their fathers sent messenger after messenger to try to warn them, because He felt pity for them and for His house,
But they mocked God’s messengers, despised His message and scoffed at His prophets until the wrath of the LORD rose up against the people until there was no way out.
And so He arranged for the king of the Babylonians to attack them, who stabbed the young men of Israel in the Sanctuary itself. He had no pity on the young men or the young women, or the old and infirm. God handed everyone over to him.
But who am I, and who are my people, that we would hold the strength to make an offering like this? All things are from you, and from your own hand we give you.
Foreigners are we before your face, and sojourners as all our fathers; our days upon the earth like a shadow without hope.
O LORD our God, all this multitude which we have established to build a house for your holy name, is all from your own hand. Everything is yours.