Posts by brian

COVID – 19 and Complicated Blessings…

Posted by on Mar 28, 2020 in Blog | 16 comments

I am writing this at a little after 3 in the morning, my jet lagged body refusing to accept that now is the time it is supposed to be asleep. Like many travellers around the world, I have been through a complicated process of rushing home as national borders close, and almost all international flights are cancelled. True, Rosemary and I had been so enjoying my sabbatical leave at Carson Newman University in the USA that we were tempted to miss the last flights out, and thought that there could be worse fates than being trapped on Carson Newman’s beautiful campus in Tennessee. But...

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As a decade begins…

Posted by on Jan 1, 2020 in Blog | 21 comments

With the twenty teens recently ended, I thought I would post a bit of an update about the blog, fill you in on an exciting new venture I am part of, add some reflections about the start of the twenties, and close with a prayer I have found meaningful. This site has carried 359 posts since it officially launched in August 2015. Some have been picked up by other sites and reposted over and over again, yet others have made it onto the reading list of a variety of courses and are sometimes quoted back at me, and yes, some have been read by only a smattering of faithful followers, before quietly...

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Why leadership matters…

Posted by on Dec 18, 2019 in Blog | 6 comments

Leadership guru Peter Drucker once said that only three things come naturally to all organisations: friction, confusion and under performance. Everything else requires leadership. It’s worth thinking about. My observation is that those in church circles have an uneasy relationship with leadership. They are conscious of how easily it can be abused, and of how some leaders embark on toxic quests for power and control, using the nobility of the mission of Jesus to mask their naked ambition. Consequently they are quick to point out that genuine Christian leadership is different, and they are...

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From FOMO to hello to here…

Posted by on Dec 11, 2019 in Blog | 2 comments

Do you, like me, often want to be somewhere else? It’s not that I’m unhappy where I am, it’s just that in a world filled with many options and possibilities – well, why wouldn’t you explore them all? Those younger than me tell me it’s FOMO, aka fear of missing out. Here’s the irony. FOMO can actually see you missing out, and get you to overlook what you already have. Recently I’ve been reading Padraig O’Tuama’s book In the Shelter. O’Tuama is the leader of the Corrymeela community in Northern Ireland, and brings a refreshing and hopeful perspective to Christian spirituality. He suggests we...

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When heaven is now…

Posted by on Sep 30, 2019 in Blog | 9 comments

I’m greatly enjoying Anthony Doerr’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel, All the Light we cannot See – a moving exploration of life set against the Second World War. One chapter is entitled “Heaven” and in it Marie-Laure, blind since aged six, is picnicking with the ailing Madame Manec. It is a rare and brief respite from the war that is raging around them, and they begin to discuss whether heaven is real, and what it will be like. One poignant insight follows another, and the chapter ends: The grasses toss and shimmy. The horses nicker. Madame Manec says, almost whispering, “Now that I...

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