Sunday, 30 December 2007

Project 1:8 Rwanda 08

In January 2008 the two Australian territories are sending a mission team to serve in Rwanda. Preparations are already well underway and the Regional Commander of Rwanda is very excited at the prospect of having a team coming to serve with them for 2-3 weeks in January.

At this stage the team is likely to be involved in a week where they will be training some of the youth leaders of the Rwandan Salvos in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda.

In the second week we are hoping the team will be spending 3-4 days each at 2 local Salvo churches - building relationships with the community and being involved in their local programs.

This is an awesome opportunity for people the team who are all ready to take the next step in their faith and wanting to serve their community with passion and love. Please pray for them as they prepare for this important journey

Matthew 28:19 (MSG)
19 Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, marking them by baptism in the threefold name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Saturday, 29 December 2007

New International Appointments


COMMISSIONER LINDA BOND, an officer of the Canada & Bermuda Territory currently serving as Director for Spiritual Life Development and International Ecumenical Relations at International Headquarters, is appointed as Territorial Commander and Territorial President of Women’s Ministries, Australia Eastern Territory in succession to Commissioners Les and Coral Strong who will be retiring from active service. Commissioner Bond's successor will be announced in due course.

LT. COLONELS PETER AND JESSICA DALI, officers of the Kenya Territory currently serving respectively as Chief Secretary and Territorial Secretary for Women’s Ministries in the Zimbabwe Territory, are appointed as command leaders of the Liberia Command, in succession to Majors Robert and Hester Dixon who will be taking up appointment responsibilities in their home territory, USA Eastern. Lt. Colonel Peter Dali is appointed as Officer Commanding, Liberia Command, and Lt. Colonel Jessica Dali as Command President of Women’s Ministries.

MAJORS LINDSAY AND LYNETTE ROWE, officers of the Canada & Bermuda Territory currently serving as divisional leaders in the Western Cape Division of the Southern Africa Territory, are appointed respectively as Chief Secretary and Territorial Secretary for Women’s Ministries in the Zimbabwe Territory. They will take up their new appointment responsibilities with the rank of lieutenant-colonel.

MAJOR FONA LING, an officer of the Hong Kong & Macau Command currently serving as Regional Commander, Taiwan Region, is to farewell from the region on 31 January 2008 and will receive an appointment in the Australia Southern Territory following furlough. From 1 February to 30 April 2008 COMMISSIONER VERNA SKINNER, a retired officer of the Australia Eastern Territory, is appointed to the interim leadership of the Taiwan Region.

MAJOR MELODY HANUNKA, previously announced (3 December 2007) as being appointed to the role of Territorial Secretary for Women’s Ministries, Zambia Territory, will now assume the role of Assistant Territorial President of Women’s Ministries in that territory. Major Saraphina Milambo will continue as Territorial Secretary for Women’s Ministries.

Genesis 31:49 (KJV)
49 And Mizpah; for he said, The LORD watch between me and thee, when we are absent one from another.

Friday, 28 December 2007

Finishing Well

Continuing in a theme at this point of the year, how about finishing well? My father used to say that you could tell a good carpenter or craftsman by how he cleaned up when he was finished. It has to do with completing the job and finishing well.

This would be true about our everyday responsibilities. Have we completed our tasks and have we finished them appropriately? We should.

So the year is coming to a close. Finishing well?

Matthew 25:23 (NIV)
23 "His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'

Thursday, 27 December 2007

Nearly Over

So the year 2007 is nearly over. In a couple of days we enter 2008. Is there something you wanted to get to this year? There's still some time left.

How about getting a jump on 2008? Why wait to get a start on something good to do?

Here are some through the Bible. . .start a daily prayer time. . . intentionally tell someone about your faith. . . upgrade your tithe. . . go back to church. . . do a random act of kindness. . .

There's more. Use your imagination...for the good. Today's a good day to start.

Psalms 73:2 (MSG)
2 But I nearly missed it, missed seeing his goodness.

Wednesday, 26 December 2007

Boxing Day

There seem to be several ideas as to why Boxing Day exists. It is a holiday and well placed after Christmas. There's a huge Cricket Match versus India and the stores went wild with sales and customers. For some, it was a day to relax. All the while, Salvos are on duty, serving God by serving mankind. The daily realities of many people make the holidays particularly difficult.

God sees us through any and all of these issues. Trusting Him needs to be our daily posture and joy. He delights in these connections.

Hebrews 13:5 (MSG)
5 Don't be obsessed with getting more material things. Be relaxed with what you have. Since God assured us, "I'll never let you down, never walk off and leave you,"

Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Happy Christmas

John 1:14 (MSG)
14 The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood. We saw the glory with our own eyes, the one-of-a-kind glory, like Father, like Son, Generous inside and out, true from start to finish.

Sunday, 23 December 2007

Christmas Carols

There is a huge difference between Christmas Songs and Christmas Carols. The songs are those that are about the season and usually include references to Father Christmas, reindeer and the like. The carols speak to the message of Christmas and contain significant theology as well.

Of course, they are no replacement for scripture and in a number of cases, embellish the account and use poetic license to enhance the imagery of the story. It should call us to familiarise ourselves with the authentic account in the Word of God, even as we sing the carols we enjoy.

Have a happy Christmas.

Luke 2:13-14 (NIV)
13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14 "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."

Saturday, 22 December 2007

Christmas Caroling

As we travel through the shopping centres, we're seeing many carolers serving the Lord with music and collections. While the funds are clearly to help people in need, the caroling adds immensely to the season for everybody. The tunes are well played and the spirit of the representatives is quite positive.

Occasionally, I see them engage in conversation with shoppers and believe it to be a way to lead so many to Christ. We do so in the way we greet others and by the Christ-like demeanor and witness. For many people, it's a start on their journey to know Christ and the power of His resurrection. That will be great. God is present and a part of our holy relationships.

Psalms 144:9 (NIV)
9 I will sing a new song to you, O God; on the ten-stringed lyre I will make music to you,

Friday, 21 December 2007

Good Plan

We need to recognise a good plan when we see one. How would we know it? I'd suggest that we can know and go for it with confidence.

1. Is it consistent with the plan of God?
2. Is it aligned with our mission?
3. Does it have reasonable potential?
4. Does it come from someone you trust?
5. Is there a better way?

Depending on the plan there would be other qualifiers you might ask. I want to encourage you to go with the good plans. They don't exactly come that often. Try to say yes and make it happen.

1 Kings 18:24 (MSG)
24 Then you pray to your gods and I'll pray to God. The god who answers with fire will prove to be, in fact, God." All the people agreed: "A good plan—do it!"

Thursday, 20 December 2007


What is it that makes forgiveness so hard? Do you suppose it's our ego? Forgiveness can be even more complicated when a loved one has been offended and victimised. In these cases, it's less of our ego and more of our pain for another.

Now let me ask what good does being unforgiving do? Do we derive some satisfaction that we hold our position and don't give in to the offender?

What about forgiving ourselves? We can be pretty hard on ourselves by this approach.

Thank the Lord that He has forgiven us for the asking and gave His Son to death to do so. God extends His forgiveness to us before we even show an interest in Him and His provision.

Matthew 6:12 (GW)
12 Forgive us as we forgive others.

Wednesday, 19 December 2007

Full Day

Why waste a day? Take full advantage of what God has given you and give it your best. This is way more than simply a philosophical statement. I've heard it said, "life is too short to worry about the details." That is far from what I'm writing about.

Life is not intended for a default or fallback approach. We are made to make the most of our days and we can in the strength of the Lord. In His name we don't waste our hours with unfruitful vanity. We have the opportunity to be purposeful and effectual throughout the days, weeks and years.

Let them say, "this person lived life to the fullest." Let that mean that you are fully engaged in right living called holiness.

1 Corinthians 1:30 (MSG)
30 Everything that we have—right thinking and right living, a clean slate and a fresh start—comes from God by way of Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, 18 December 2007

God wins

Let there be no doubt in your mind, God is winning. He is constantly involved in our lives and pursuing us for our best. He stays with us where nothing can cause separation. Look around you and see Him at work.

I've seen Him speak to faithful servants today and watched His Spirit move through them in their minds and in their souls. When this happens, God wins.

When Jesus died on the cross and rose to new life in three days, God won. Our daily journey goes to prove His victory in the daily occurances. He wants to show you, personally.

1 John 5:5 (MSG)
5 The person who wins out over the world's ways is simply the one who believes Jesus is the Son of God.

Monday, 17 December 2007

Different Perspectives

You can go through the day hearing all types of ideas about life and what God expects of us. It is amazing to me how we tend to see the same things so differently. An interesting measure of the veracity of the commentator is the presence of God in their perspective. Is the grace of God evident?

I have a concern about our need to be judgmental about each other. Is it because we are so dedicated to the truth that we cannot bear hearing or observing anything we believe to be off the mark? Here's where I cannot take the liberty to become judgmental about those who are judgmental.

Let the point be our resolve to depend upon the Word of God to clarify our thinking when we have our differences...and be marked by the grace of God.

Ephesians 4:2-3 (MSG)
2 And mark that you do this with humility and discipline—not in fits and starts, but steadily, pouring yourselves out for each other in acts of love,
3 alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences.

Sunday, 16 December 2007

Love means Connecting

God is love.

He calls us to love Him and others.

It starts with getting to know each other. How about their name? How about their interests? How about what they do for a living? The love God speaks of flows from these connections and more.

How about your neighbours? How about the people in your corps or work environment? school?

If we would only start with the people we know and then get to know a few more people, we'd make astounding progress. Hallelujah!

1 Corinthians 13:13 (NIV)
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Saturday, 15 December 2007

Christmas Concert

Tonight in Ivanhoe, the Melbourne Staff Band and The Idea of North gave a Christmas Concert to a house full of appreciative attenders. We came to the night concert. There was also one in the afternoon. The Band was superb as usual under the baton of B/m Ken Waterworth.

The Idea of North is an acapella quartet of extraordinary quality and musicianship. Two women and two men make up the group that is absolutely top shelf. I understand they've been performing as a group for over ten years.

The Christmas music is a delight and worth listening to every word. There's great theology in the carols.

Luke 2:14 (NIV)
14 "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."

Friday, 14 December 2007

Mo' Christmas

The THQ Christmas party occurred this week. Thanks to all who made it a success. We are blessed with our people. There's joy in The Salvation Army. Bridgehaven is a residence for women in rehabilitation over drugs and alcohol. Some of the women are there with their children as well. The Christmas programme there was sensational. They had a brass ensemble, magician, two commissioners, father Christmas and a partridge in a pear tree. This is a great centre with a deeply committed team at work.

Today, we found ourselves at the St. Kilda Crisis Centre and the 614 New Life Centre. Do you remember that all of us in the ministry of TSA are Salvos? I'm convinced more than ever.

The next stop was a visit to the Aboriginal Cultural Centre - Narana. This, of course is where Salvationist Vince Ross works and where members of our Indigenous People's Committee met to visit this tremendous place and have a yarn about our role in the territory. We have much to do in this area.

The day concluded with a visit to two of our finest corps officers in their home. They are wonderful people with a clear understanding of their calling and mission.

God is blessing the territory with fantastic corps officers, social programme officers and employees, soldiers, volunteers and donors. This is all to support and worship the baby born in Bethlehem and laid in a manger.

Matthew 2:6 (NIV)
6 "'But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will be the shepherd of my people Israel.'"

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Open Blog to David


You know who you are. You're a seeker of God, although you don't admit to it. You see, we all are. The vacuum in your soul is the evidence of what I am saying. Please come to Him now while you still have the opportunity. Life is too fleeting and fragile to wait another minute. His joy is available to you for the asking. You can connect right now. God loves you. His Son died and went to hell in your place so you wouldn't have to. His resurrection in three days is living proof of His authority to give you life.

You know that when you post derogatory comments I remove them from the blog. The purpose of this blog is to declare the love of God, affirm people on their journey and be an open portal to me. When anything posted is inconsistent with those objectives, I will consistently remove them.

Can you contact me with a return address so that we may have a proper opportunity to consider what's on your mind and how God can bring clarity?

I also know you have commented on other Salvo blogs. If one of those friends can help us to connect, I would be grateful.

Thank you, Lord, for David. May he see your grace.

Romans 5:8 (NIV)
8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Prayer Warriors

A prayer warrior contacted me today with her understanding of where we are and where we are going in the territory. She confirms the bright future that God has planned for us. He's amazing in the way He holds us and lifts us in His presence. He has shown us His favour throughout the years and recently in the Connections experiences. Hallelujah!

What is He saying to you about the days ahead? He is leading you and me to His grace and the revelation of His power among us. Drop to your knees. Expect the best. He only gives what is perfect for us. Yes.

2 Timothy 1:7 (NIV)
7 For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.

Tuesday, 11 December 2007


Ideas are flowing in as to how we can better connect going forward. We have quite an assortment of suggestions to consider. I'm also hoping that divisions, corps, social programmes and other groups will form to gain from what we've learned and can apply. Soon, a DVD set of the meetings and all will be available for those who weren't able to be there. You can also go to the THQ website and view the meetings if you'd like. I've even been known to refer to comments given on this blog.

We intend to fully review each and every constructive thought to honour God in our Army. These are exciting days. These are new days.

1 John 3:3 (MSG)
3 All of us who look forward to his Coming stay ready, with the glistening purity of Jesus' life as a model for our own.

Monday, 10 December 2007

Christmas Season

Today was a banner day in the Christmas Season. The Staff Band played in a Christmas Programme at the Hamer Hall. They were terrific. The Veteran's Band played a programme at the Town Hall. I wasn't able to stay for their programme, but the crowd was amazing and the band is always superior.

My next stop was at the 614 New Life Centre where the place is oozing with the love of Christ, and then to two separate advisory board members offices for personal meetings. In case you think the day ended from there, not so my friend. I was fortunate to connect at Flinders Station and witness the ministry of Captain Jason Davies-Kildea and musical partner for their duet of Christmas Carols. Well done.

In the evening, Carolyn and I went with a choice family to the presentation of the Seventh Day Adventist Churches, "The Road to Bethlehem." It was terrific and a blessing to be with our friends and to consider the birth of Christ.

This is why I love the Christmas Season. You can be reminded of God's love over and over again. Hallelujah!

Matthew 1:23 (NIV)
23 "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"--which means, "God with us."

Sunday, 9 December 2007

God is seeking you

The Scriptures declare it. The love of God proves it and the plan of God includes it. God is seeking you. Not aware of His love? Look around you and you will see how He is reaching out to you. Read His word and learn first hand how He shows His love to you before you have to do anything.

Along the journey and down the road? He still pursues you to experience His fullness and holiness. There's even more for you in the future. As our days add to our lives, so does His provision of love increase moment by moment. Now meet Him where you are and be prepared to know even more peace and joy and hope than you would imagine. Hallelujah!

Psalms 41:2 (MSG)
2 God looks after us all, makes us robust with life— Lucky to be in the land, we're free from enemy worries.

Saturday, 8 December 2007

Giving Thanks

With Connections pressing upon us, our celebration of the American holiday Thanksgiving was put on hold. Today we celebrated with some close friends, complete with Turkey and all the trimmings. With the newly set up Christmas tree and the food cooking, our house smelled glorious.

It was all worth it. We enjoyed the food, the conversation and the fellowship. It was a gift from God. Following the desert, we went around the table to express our gratitude to God from our unique perspectives. He was acknowledged for everything from the food to family to present circumstance and for life itself. We have much to be thankful for. He has provided abundantly. Hallelujah!

Revelation 7:12 (NIV)
12 saying: "Amen! Praise and glory and wisdom and thanks and honor and power and strength be to our God for ever and ever. Amen!"

Friday, 7 December 2007

Grace of God

Let there be no doubt in your mind of the beautiful grace of God. His unconditional love is an excellent example to us of His most penetrating power. That is the power to change hearts. All we need is to receive His love and we will know His grace...and forgiveness...and renewal.

Now consider that this holy relationship continues forever.

Remain in Him and He remains in you.

There is nothing better. Hallelujah!

2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)
9 But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.

Thursday, 6 December 2007


There are some pretty terrific people out there being used by God in mighty ways. From the smallest donor to the largest, we are fortunate to have the hand of God upon us to be the recipients of resources from these generous people.

Occasionally I have the privilege to meet these God led people. I am amazed with each one who has such confidence in The Salvation Army to share their hard earned money with us. Hallelujah!

God bless them each. We are grateful to you for them.

Philippians 4:12 (NIV)
12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.

Wednesday, 5 December 2007

Connections Candidates

We read and prayed through the list of Candidates for officership which indicated their interest at Connections. There were 45 in all. Hallelujah! Everyone is precious and will demand individual consideration. May the process be one of holy discovery and joy.

I'm grateful to God for everyone at Connections and throughout the territory who will say to God, "I'll do what you want." From Junior Soldiers to the most senior officers, it's the right answer for today and the right answer forever.

1 John 2:17 (MSG)
17 The world and all its wanting, wanting, wanting is on the way out—but whoever does what God wants is set for eternity.

Tuesday, 4 December 2007

Northern Victoria Division

With Lieutenant Colonel Jocelyn Knapp and Major Cilla Bone farewelling soon, their divisional farewell meeting was tonight at the Bendigo Corps. The hall was packed and the crowd's responsiveness to these leaders was strong and sweet. In their roles they have demonstrated effective female ministry, competent team ministry and committed leadership.

We are grateful to God for them and look forward to their new scope of influence throughout the territory.

1 Corinthians 3:7 (MSG)
7 It's not the one who plants or the one who waters who is at the center of this process but God, who makes things grow.

Monday, 3 December 2007


Before tonight, I didn't know what that meant either. It stands for Salvation Army Basketball Association Victoria. There are 37 teams and hundreds of young people involved in male and female basketball competition. The award banquet was tonight where trophies were given to deserving players. Lt. Graeme Mawson organised the event and had much to do with the leagues. Good work.

So is this something we should spend energy doing? Absolutely. Good experience in a healthy exercise, mixing Salvo youth with many who are unfamiliar with the Christian context. I have no doubt that God is honoured in these activities. Fun is still a part of God's plan.

1 John 1:4 (MSG)
4 Our motive for writing is simply this: We want you to enjoy this, too. Your joy will double our joy!

Sunday, 2 December 2007

Captain June Knop

One of the newly commissioned Captains gave the message at Box Hill Corps today. She is Captain June Knop and she gave a great message. With confidence, good preparation and a pure heart, she spoke to us from the Word of God on this first Sunday of Advent.

Captain Knop is one of the people that convince me that we have a new day in the territory. She, and her associate Heralds of the Good News give us reason to celebrate God's active interest in who we are and what we're doing. She's a wonderful representative of our Lord.

Isaiah 61:1 (NIV)
1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners,

Saturday, 1 December 2007

Lt. Colonels John and Judith Jeffrey

Lt. Colonels John and Judith Jeffrey completed their "active" officership yesterday. We were with them as they left the office to head for home. As you know, Judith has been the Territorial Secretary for Women's Ministries and John has been the Chief Secretary of our great Australia Southern Territory. They have served well and deserve our gratitude.

They, of course would redirect our thanks to God who has sustained them through the years. If you're looking for examples of how God works excellently through His children, look no further than the Jeffreys. Know too that retirement will not cease their ministry, only reshape it.

Thank you Lord, for these wonderful people.

Proverbs 12:14 (MSG)
14 Well-spoken words bring satisfaction; well-done work has its own reward.