Posts

ODJ: God's garden


Last spring I planted a herb garden, even though I don’t have a ‘green thumb’. In fact I only sporadically watered the plants when their environment reached desertlike conditions. But, fortunately, I was able to enjoy cooking with the fresh produce of my work throughout the summer. A year later, though, I looked out at my garden and realised that my garden—like my life—was in a different

ODJ: why baptism?


The announcement couldn’t have been clearer: “Water baptism is not an option for the believer in Jesus. Please sign up for baptism. Baptismal classes begin in 2 weeks time.”

ODJ: correcting blind spots

In The Call to Joy and Pain, Ajith Fernando, a Christian leader from Sri Lanka, wrote: “The church in each culture has its own special challenges—theological blind spots that hinder Christians from growing to full maturity in Christ. . . . I think one of the most serious theological blind spots in [today’s] western church is a defective understanding of suffering. . . . The ‘good life’

ODJ: experiencing community


Respondents to a recent survey listed the following as key elements of their church life: connecting with God, experiencing transformation, gaining new insights and feeling cared for. All of those things happen as individual believers come together and use their gifts to bless and edify one another.
So often the idea of a ‘personal relationship with God’ is emphasised in our experience wit

ODJ: lawn libraries


Nancy Johnson went for a walk and discovered a little library in a neighbour’s garden. It’s estimated that there are now between 300 to 400 small libraries lodged in people’s lawns around the world. Each has a take a book/leave a book policy. Nancy commented, “What a nifty idea . . . I like the sense of community.”
Many of us are looking for a way to connect with people who share our i

ODJ: expecting fruit


My neighbour planted some apple tree seedlings. Several years later the mature trees bore fruit. But there was a problem. The first bushel of apples my neighbour picked contained some unwanted guests. Worms were found, leading his wife to conclude that a few bad apples do indeed spoil the whole bunch! Since that fateful day the only things that have munched on my neighbour’s apples are wild de

ODJ: rebuilding the altar


I love knowledge. As a child, after stumbling across a picture Bible in the library, I wanted to read the real Bible. I had the impression that it was simply a thick book with tiny words, full of information like an encyclopedia. But as I read the real Bible I realised that knowledge is good but wisdom is much, much better. 
Their first step was not to rebuild the temple. Instead they chose to r