Monday, October 18, 2010

Ready Writers

As you may have gathered by now, I consider myself something of a writer.  I maintain a separate blog for my writing persona, David Seven. 

In fact, one of the regular series on this blog, and the other is one called Faith and Writing, wherein I explore the connection between my faith, and my writing.  For a more complete explanation of why I consider my faith to be tied-up with my writing, might I suggest this post.

Well, about a year ago I was attending a quite day, and doing some meditation on Psalm 45, when I came across verse 1.

My heart is stirred by a noble theme as I recite my verses for the king; my tongue is the pen of a ready writer.

bible-studying-pen-papgerAnd that verse kind of stopped me. Am I being a ready writer?  I know in the context it is referring to reciting verses of praise, but it got me thinking about how I use my pen.

Am I a ready writer?  Am I ready to use my pen to praise my King?

So I decided to register a new blog, called Ready Writer.  I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with it yet, but I decided to register it anyway. 

Except that I couldn’t.  The name was already taken. (By someone who isn’t even using it!!)  Then, while fiddling with other names, I found that Ready Writers was not taken yet.  So I registered that as a blog. 

And then I realised why I was supposed to set up a different blog; because it wasn’t going to be just mine.  I see it as a blog of some sort with many ready writers using their pens to glorify their King.

But I don’t know exactly how it is going to work. 
Am I going to use it like a Christian writing journal and ask for submissions? 
Am I going to do (daily/weekly) writing prompts and encourage writers to post on the blog? 
Am I going to do a combination of both?

Enquiring minds want to know.

What do you think?  Drop me a line, and tell me how you think I should do this thing.

Thank you.

Oh, yes.  The blog is on WordPress, and can be found here.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

What are we selling?

I was having a discussion with a friend of mine who is studying to enter the ministry.  He mentioned a question that they had had posed to them in their course. For their assignment they had to try and convert someone without using the Bible.  The idea was that you can never convince someone to accept the Bible by using the Bible.

Which makes sense I suppose. 

But how do you do that?  How do you convince someone of the truth of Christ’s saving grace, and his God-ship, without using scripture.

Well, you have to sell him something else. 

You have to sell yourself.

Bizarro_20100827_largeThink of it this way.  I can tell you that cheese tastes good, but you will never know what it tastes like until you try it.  So you have to be convinced of it’s taste. 

So I tell you it tastes good, that it will meet all your needs, and you will be refreshed eating it.  But if you don’t believe me; If you think it is poison, or that it is terrible, you will never eat it. 

So I have to sell you myself first.  I have to convince you that I know what tastes good, and that I am not insane, and enjoy eating poison.  I have to sell you the idea that I care enough about you to want you to have something that is good for you.

Then -  once you buy me, you might be prepared to try what I am selling.

model release a, b , property release, location; paris The same I think with evangelism.  We can not sell Christ, unless we are also selling ourselves.  We need to be seen to be caring, because otherwise why should they believe us.  We need to be trustworthy, we need to be loving, we need to be stable.  Then, when we say “I know a way that works, let me tell you why it worked for me,” they can rely on our tastes and trustworthiness.  They can trust that we know what we are talking about. 

If we aren’t building relationships, and living the word we preach, we are selling a product no one will trust.

And that is just wrong.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Where do you find your answers?

Some people find their answers in Jesus.

Some people find their answers in chocolate.


Some people find their Jesus in their chocolate.



I have nothing further.

Monday, October 11, 2010

I am a twit

It's official.  As of Saturday 9 October 2010, I am on Twitter.  @fishythoughts

I am so ashamed. :-(

For those of you who have been following me for a while, you know that I am violently opposed to the twitter phenomenon.  So much so, that my friend Katdish once remarked, "You know, someone recently told me I am the most stubborn person on the face of the earth, but I think you take that title.

Who could forget such vitriolic diatribes as "Twitter", "Who are you talking to", and of course, the classic "Why I like Twitter." ?
So why the change of heart?

Well, actually it comes from one of my other personalities.  In my other life, as amateur writer David Seven, I am responsible for co-ordinating a group of writers who will be taking part in an insane writing project in November.  I'm sure you've heard me talk about National Novel Writing Month before.   

Well, in order to co-ordinate the writers in my home town, and organise write-ins and meet-ups, I thought it might be useful to create a twitter account.  Since I was the only writer in my writing group who didn't have one.  So I set up a group to keep them updated, and to send them encouragments etc throughout the month.

Well, after I set the account up, I became so frustrated with the Twitter site, that I installed Tweetdeck on my PC. 

That programme is awesome!

And I figured, since I had this application running on my PC, and it was so cool for running a twitter account, and my facebook updates, I might as well just add another one while I'm at it.

And it was all downhill from there.

Don't worry.  I shall still be a twitter snob, and act all grumpy.  I shall just do it on twitter.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Biblios Hokku - Revelation

The final chapter, in more ways than one.  I don’t imagine any book of the Bible is more talked about, or discussed than Revelation.

Revelation, also called Apocalypse in some older texts, is the story of the end of times. 

There are probably more interpretations of the book than there are verses in it.  Many people claim to understand it, and to be able to interpret the day-by-day calendar of the end of the world.

For me, the images of “end-times” and “raptures” and “tribulations” are no where near as exciting as the images of “A New Jerusalem” and “The Lamb on the Throne” and God “wiping away all tears”


Apocalypse now!
Through strife and judgment,
we win in the end!


Need I say more?

I think not.


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Review : Mystically Wired


We are designed to make connections to God through prayer in more ways than we can imagine.

Prayer can be so much more than a simple conversation. It can be a wordless connection with God, a step beyond the boundary of the separated self. It can be a way to listen to the silence. And it can be learned.

Click here to learn more.


I was looking for a book to help me deepen my prayer life, so when I was given an opportunity to review this one, I jumped at it. It says “Mystically Wired is a practical guide to cooperating with your brain’s innate capacities in order to experience a richer, fuller prayer life. Your brain is wired and waiting to pray in new ways, enabled by a fresh understanding of some ancient prayer disciplines.”

Sounds good, doesn’t it?

I have to admit the book didn’t do a great deal for me. The second half had some useful prayer techniques; and they are summarised nicely in the annexure, which is very useful. However the first half was focused on convincing us that our brains are scientifically wired to respond to activities such as prayer in a certain way. It felt at time as if the writer was trying to convince me that prayer was “scientific” and that our religious response is in fact a physiological response to the meditative aspect.

This is not what the writer was getting at, as he has some very real spiritual insights. But it felt a little apologetic at times, as if prayer needed to be explained.

I review for BookSneeze

I received this book free as part of the Booksneeze programme at Thomas Nelson.  I was not required to give a favourable review.

Visit Thomas Nelson.

Monday, October 4, 2010

I can see November from here

Ah, November.  11th month of the year; a sign of the approach of December.

And also the setting for National Novel Writing Month

As I mentioned last year, I am one of the insane writers who spend November trying to beat out a 50,000 word novel in 30 days.  (We have to be finished by midnight on 31 Nov.)

And, since I am a Municipal Liaison for South Africa, and also for my hometown, I will be spending a lot of time looking after other writers, and hanging around in the forums.

So just a bit of advanced notice.  I will still be blogging here, but probably not as regularly.  Unless I can save up enough posts by the end of the month to pre-load them for November.

Madness?  This is NANO!!!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Biblios Hokku - Jude

The book of Jude is another letter written to try and combat heresy.  Jude, possibly Jesus’ half-brother, urges his readers to “…contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.” (Jude 1:3) He warns that Godless men have crept into the church “…who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord.” (Jude 1:4b)

To put it simply, they were teaching that being saved by Grace, meant you could keep sinning and it would not held against you. 

Jude reminds them that this is not how it works, and that they must not be so easily taken in.


Contend for the faith.
Your freedom is not to sin,
but to live in Grace.


I am particularly proud of the double meaning in line two. :-)