All posts tagged: wisdom

Say NO With Conviction, Girl

She learnt to say “no” this week. From pursed little lips it sprang, clear as the blue of her eyes. “No.” And again, practicing. “No.” Her 17-month-old face was delighted rather than deceitful as she formed the new word, parroting her Mum, the weight of that one syllable yet to dawn. And later, my sweet daughter had already forgotten the obnoxious, if petite, declaration. Phew! Well… not exactly.

Those War-Bruised People Who Will Soon be our Neighbours

If Tony Abbott knocked on my door last Wednesday, I would have kissed him, ushered him in, poured him a glass of our best wine. A day earlier, the reception might have been different. I don’t envy your job, Mr Abbott. What a tense couple of weeks it’s been for you and your cabinet, but as one Australian voter with a deep concern for vulnerable people – even those beyond our shores – I want to say thank you for listening. As you know, less than a week ago the Australian government announced it would welcome 12,000 extra permanent refugees from the Syria conflict, with a particular focus on women, children and families from persecuted minority groups. Australia will also pay for the direct accommodation of 240,000 refugees seeking asylum in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. Watching the news footage of women pushing prams along railway tracks, of fathers crying into the necks of their children, of cities leaning like ashen boxes in rubble gardens, we have wept. Their blood has run down our faces as tears. …

It’s Small, Slimy and Can Kill

It still shocks me what is said on social media with its few degrees of separation. The no-holds-barred statements laced with hate, the offensive name-calling and the lies. They hide behind their tablet, computer or smartphone and muster the most loathsome messages to pierce reputation and self esteem. The pack mentality of those who follow suit is the lowest game of follow-the-leader. Speaking of pack mentality – we’ve seen it alive and well at the footy with the Adam Goodes booing controversy. No one should be subject to public, repetitive, malicious words delivered from the anonymity and distance of ‘the crowd’ – whatever form that takes. The problem is nothing new. In fact, the problem is a very small slimy thing that also gives much delight in devouring mum’s apple crumble or pulling silly faces or kissing our beloved. “The tongue has the power of life and death,” Proverbs 18:21 reads. The tongue – as a symbol of our individual voice and right to use it – is a dangerous weapon. Never has it been more important to …

Five Questions to Ask Before You Post THAT Comment or Photo

Rules bring freedom.  It’s strange but true that a certain amount of structure and regulation enables us to live – and to do so with a decreased (or non-existent) shackle of worry regarding safety, wellbeing and enjoyment. Red light means stop, green light means go; a rule that brings the liberty to drive from Point A to Point B, without risk of injury to self or others. In the fire safety book that my three-year-old son has fixated on, there’s a “Two-metres from the heater” rhyme.  We have the freedom to enjoy a heater’s warmth, without its burn, if we adhere to such advice. Sundays in our household are TV-free days.  This rule gives us freedom to enjoy each other’s company more completely – to read, talk, play boardgames and go for long walks. Rules protect us. If ever there was a sphere that lacked healthy regulation it would be social media.  Nowhere will you find more disrespectful, hateful, abusive or crude material as in the annals of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and all those …

Introducing April’s ‘Fool’… Jesus

Would it be ruining it if I mentioned that it’s April Fools Day tomorrow?  It would? Sorry. And would it surprise you if I pointed out that the Bible calls its own hero, Jesus, a fool, a weakling even?  By the world’s standards, anyway. The reference is in 1 Corinthians and, like any piece of startlingly inimitable literature, the passage (verses 18-31) unfolds new meaning and beauty with each reading. “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.  God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things – the things that are not – to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.” (verses 27-29) What is foolish and wise by our standards is not foolish and wise by God’s.  I could imagine the writer Paul punctuating the air by his ears with finger quotes if he had been asked to voice his sentiments. So called “foolishness”.  So called “wisdom”. Jesus …

“Get Wisdom” and Get Informed Ahead of Election Day

Apathy (a-pa-thy, noun): lack of feeling or emotion; impassiveness; lack of interest or concern; indifference. A good word for describing a large chunk of Tasmania’s population who are of voting age and will be expected to scribble on a ballot paper this Saturday.  I’m not going to make any outlandish statements about God smiting human beings who fail to hold a conviction on which party to vote for. Vote whichever way you choose.  But don’t be apathetic about your vote.  I was once.  Not anymore, because I see what a difference it makes to the way we live in this lovely little state, girt by sea. With years come wisdom. Proverbs 4:5-7 speaks of wisdom (and, might I add, she’s personified as a woman!): “Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or swerve from them.  Do not forsake wisdom and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you.  Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom.  Though it cost all you have, get understanding.” King Solomon is believed to have written …