Monday, 20 September 2010


After many years on blogger I've moved my blog... for reasons too boring or vain to go into here....

you can find it on Tumblr:

or as

See you over there!!!


Monday, 6 September 2010

Playlist - September 1.0

Satisfied Mind by Ben Harper & The Blind Boys of Alabama - There Will Be A Light
Run into Flowers by M83 - Dead Cities, Red Sea & Lost Ghosts
Atlas by Battles - Mirrored
Our Love Goes Deeper Than This by Duke Special & Neil Hannon - Songs from the Deep Forest (ltd.ed.)
Edgar by Modeselektor - Happy Birthday!
The Sound of Silence by Simon & Garfunkel - Sounds of Silence
Pretension/Repulsion (Four Tet remix) by Manic Street Preachers - Journal for Plague Lovers Remixes
Let Down by Pedro the Lion - Tour EP 2004
Lost and Found by Steve Mason - Lost and Found
Kanga Roo by Big Star - Keep an Eye on the Sky

Go on. Try it.


Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Justice League

I've always been a sucker for superhero teams - Avengers; Titans; Runaways; JSA; Teen Titans and of course the Astonishing, Amazing & Uncanny X-Men. But my favourite is the Justice League of America. It is kind of like the Real Madrid of the DC Universe. More often than not each incarnation of the team has included the iconic 'Big Three' (Superman; Batman; Wonder Woman) combined with other classic DC characters (The Flash; Green Lantern; Green Arrow; Aquaman) and many others too.

They are a team of fantastic individuals. They are powerful beyond imagination - yet only together, with the whole greater than the sum of the parts - can they defeat various threats to the world (or universe) (or multi-verse).

In one of my favourite JLA stories is the Pinocchio-esque tale of 'Tornado's Path' by Brad Meltzer in which Batman, Superman and Wonder look at reforming the team after the Infinite Crisis event.

Batman, the shrewd tactician, is intent on forming a perfect team - every skill and power present, every threat covered, full of experience and ability. But in the end they end up with a team of heroes who 'happened' to be involved in the 'Tornado's Path' story. Which annoys Batman until he is reminded that is how the team originally formed - when a group of heroes happened to gather round a disaster.

The team isn't who Batman would pick. It has holes. It has inexperience. It has relational issues. But sometimes the best team is not the one you would pick; it is the one that is there.

In my life I have sent up many prayers for better drummers/guitarists/singers/sound engineers. And that isn't wrong (I don't think!) but if my only plan to go forward is to get in 'better people' then when 'better people' leave we are left short and without a plan B.

The lessons I need to learn are more to do with the valuing and releasing of who is here already rather than looking to acquire new talent from outside. Embracing the creativity of our teams is key to their development and our collective growth.

Perhaps God does has have others He wants to bring to our teams but we need to be careful that our prayers don't slip into the realms of telling God that the people and resources He has given us aren't good enough. He doesn't make mistakes. I need to believe that.

I love Paul's beautiful imagery of the 'Body of Christ' in 1 Corinthians 12:
The eye cannot say to the hand, "I don't need you!" And the head cannot say to the feet, "I don't need you!" On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
It speaks of how our diversity is not just important or preferable - it is essential. It is God's perfect intention. Team is not optional - it is a necessity of the very design of the Church.

Before I pray for better people I need to seek to honour the people we already have. Sometimes the best team is the one that is there.


Friday, 27 August 2010

Music Heals

Recently I’ve bought a lot of new music - something I tend to do before going on holiday, to go with a pile of books, comics and a pair of cheap flip-flops. As I was listening to all this new music I felt all the usual joys and fascinations that fresh new music brings, but I was also experiencing something else; a peace; a calming effect; a refreshment.

I was experiencing healing.

My heart and my soul were being restored. It was certainly spiritual. Yet the music was not ‘worship’ music nor was it ambient or chill or remotely meditative. It was beautiful and creative and inspiring however. And that was healing me in ways I didn’t even know I needed healing.

When David takes his lyre to Saul in 1 Samuel 16 his playing refreshes Saul and causes his spiritual torment to cease. No words, no voices or songs. Just notes, just music. The spiritual power held in music is beyond our understanding.

I cannot comprehend how an electronic beat created in another part of the world that some how finds itself as an mp3 on my phone can hold the power to heal me. But it does.

I do not know why the resonant frequencies of a guitar or drum or piano would have the ability to reach into my soul and breath life. But they do.

Of course not in all music do I find healing. But some music resonates with the depths of your soul - causing it to be still, restoring things to their intended nature. It is a wonderful mystery - and an incredible blessing to find music that can do such powerful work.

Friday, 20 August 2010

Playlist - August 2.0

Vicious World by Rufus Wainwright - Want One
1 Thing by Amerie - The Very Best of Amerie
Boys Keep Swinging by David Bowie - Lodger
Summer Mood by Best Coast - Crazy For You
Unforgettable by Nat King Cole - The Nat King Cole Story
Monkey by Low - The Great Destroyer
Tired of Waiting For You by The Kinks - Picture Book
Vessels by Philip Glass - Koyaanisqatsi
Fancy Clown by Madvillain & Viktor Vaughn - Madvillainy
He Lays In The Reins by Iron & Wine and Calexico - In the Reins