Growing Genuises

Government has long claimed that education is the key to a prosperous future for our country. Whether they’re doing their part is debatable, but it’s clear that the rest of us don’t believe that education is important. If we did, would we tolerate the drek that passes for kids’ TV?

Our apartheid past made it a virtue to keep in line, and avoid thinking or asking questions. Lack of education was a major tool in the subjugation of black South Africans. One would think, then, that having awoken from our stupor, we would fling off our dull shackles and breathe deeply of the fresh air of free thought. Given our past, it is surprising that education has not become a banner of triumph in our democracy, but it is thoroughly disturbing that South Africans seem more interested in the warmth and gloom of their old blankets.

We’re in need of thinkers who can steer the country wisely, and we’re in need of entrepreneurs, artisans and problem solvers who can create jobs and combat poverty. We know this, but what are we doing to nurture future leaders? South African kids’ media reveals what we think they ought to enjoy, and how we’re training our kids to play and learn. Consider this brief sample from our national broadcaster’s morning line-ups: Continue reading

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Marriage of God & Man: A Wedding Sermon

EPHESIANS 5:22-33
 
All around the world, weddings are among the most festive and lavish of all our celebrations. The union of a man and woman in a life-long commitment, the creation of a new family, is one of the most important events in the life of any community. And the way in which marriages are held varies drastically from place to place. Some weddings are reverent, serious-minded ceremonies in which commitment is stressed; some take place in Elvis suits between a few rounds of drinks. I attended one wedding officiated by a New Age priestess in which everyone wore orange and pink, and lit candles together. But do you know why Christian weddings traditionally take place in a church-like meeting, and always include the seemingly unnecessary sermon that I am doing now? Have you ever thought about why we do weddings this way, and not another?

Continue reading

Springbok Emblem

I walked past a lampost today that proclaimed another twist in the ‘Springbok emblem saga’. Well that’s important enough to keep the announcement of the new World president off the headlines…

But seriously, why is everyone getting so worked up about this? People kicked up almost no fuss when the cricketers got labelled ‘The Proteas’ (not the most inspiring of emblems, but at least it’s not likely to spawn an annoying dancing foam-covered mascot). And what’s at stake here anyway? After all, we’ve grown used to some of the most appalling names and emblems, for example: Continue reading

Religion as the Enemy of Worship

A SERMON FROM AMOS 4

Introduction

In Amos 4 & 5, we look at God’s take on Israel’s worship. For us, worship is a subject of some confusion. When we speak about worship in the church, people are always very quick to point out that worship is not just singing, it’s our whole life. This is good and true, but the fact that it is necessary to have such a dictum reveals that we know that we’re often confused.

And of course, even when we remember that worship is a lifestyle, there’s still the question of what part our music and our church ceremony plays. For example, consider these two book titles:

  • Prophetic Worship – Releasing the Presence of God
  • (Winning Edge Min.) Worship Music in 3D: How to Sing Down the Presence and Power of God

Does our worship achieve this lofty end or not? Does God really need our permission to be ‘released’ or ‘present’?

And then what about lifestyle? We might say that our life is worship, but how widespread is this idea, and how seriously to we take the challenge? Continue reading