Archive for September, 2013

25
Sep
13

“Pride” Before A “Fall”

PRIDE
Yesterday I found out I’d won two first prizes in an art competition.

I was awarded “Best Abstract” for Metamorphose
metamorphose

And Best “Mixed Media” for Redemption

redemption

FALL

There were four entries in the Abstract category and three of them were mine.

There were two entries in the Mixed Media category – both of them mine.

While the “wins” are not as prestigious as they initially may have seemed – at least there was a little prize money to be reinvested into new materials and/or reference books.

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17
Sep
13

Early Spring Garden

gardenWhat a difference turning the page of a calendar can make!

As soon as spring arrives it seems more appealing to get into the garden to pull weeds, dig garden beds and plant new things.

My garden is looking much better already. Garlic is doing well (planted last autumn) and onions are starting to look promising after a late planting. The first crop of broccoli is almost ready and we’ve already eaten the season’s first asparagus.

Throughout winter we’ve been able to pick self-sown lettuce as needed, and it is now taking over a large part of one garden bed.

New plantings include capsicum, chilli, zucchini and Lebanese cucumber. I’ve also sown corn, carrots, beetroot and butternut pumpkin.

So far a good year seems to be ahead.

06
Sep
13

Overshadowed

Overshadowed 2

When you enter the land that the Lord will give you as he promised, observe this ceremony. And when your children ask you, ‘What does this ceremony mean to you?’ then tell them, ‘It is the Passover sacrifice to the Lord, who passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt and spared our homes when he struck down the Egyptians.’” Then the people bowed down and worshiped.

Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, ‘Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.’

_____________

Not a very good photo, but the best I’ve been able to take of this painting, the top few centimetres of the painting were missed. Faintly stencilled on the upright to the left of the cup are the words “What does this mean” (not visible in the photo).

05
Sep
13

Who Do You Choose When There Is No Choice?

Only two days until the Federal Election and I’m still not sure what to do at the ballot box. Only two things are certain: 1) Voting is compulsory 2) I don’t feel I can vote for, or give preference to, either major party.

For some time I’ve been thinking of attending the polling booth but leaving my ballot paper blank. That way I’ll be fulfilling my legal obligation and also exercising my responsibility to vote for the candidate of my choice.

    Why I can’t vote for the Liberal-National Coalition?

 

I find them untrustworthy. Their refusal to reveal key budgetary data for scrutiny until a day or two before Election Day (to me) shows there is something they want to hide for as long as possible. They also rely too much on parroted slogans instead of intelligent debate. How often do we need to hear the “Stop the Boats” mantra? This is something I addressed in a post a couple of days ago where AGAIN we are faced with the likelihood of important information being withheld to hide facts.

Their tactic of misrepresenting economic reality through meaningless, unprovable slogans: first we had the “interest rates will always be lower under the coalition” replaced with “the economy will always be stronger under the coalition”. Such statements present a desirable outcome that can never be delivered in a provable way, as can be seen in the recent switch from the first slogan to the second after interest rates reached record lows under the current Labor government.

Interest rates and “the economy” are subject to International events as well as Government policy. And recently despite some of the worst EVER international conditions that decimated most world economies, the Australian economy was kept in very healthy territory. By accident? Or by shrewd economic measures courtesy of a Labor Government?

I also don’t take well to being bombarded with one-eyed political propaganda like we’ve had in the Murdoch press anti-labour campaign. The Murdoch headlines over recent weeks have been appallingly biased – remember this is the same Murdoch whose papers were at the centre of one of the worst ever media scandals in Britain recently (remember phone tapping anyone?).

And finally I don’t see Tony Abbott as Prime Minister material. (If Malcolm Turnbull had been the potential PM I think there would have been no doubt about where to allocate my vote).

    Why I can’t vote for Labor?

The thing that REALLY swung the balance relates to Kevin Rudd’s appearance on the ABC TV programme Q & A a few nights ago.
While I give him credit for appearing on the show and facing some very difficult questions (unlike Tony Abbott who declined), it was his response to one question that overshadowed everything else. The question came from a church pastor who asked about Rudd’s about-face on same sex marriage. (see here for my earlier comments on Rudd’s change of mind: https://onesimusfiles.wordpress.com/2013/05/23/irony-in-the-homosexual-marriage-debate/ )

Now it’s not Rudd’s decision to support same sex marriage that I find objectionable. For some time I’ve recognised that a secular government under which homosexuality is legal has no logical reason to deny same sex marriage. The issue I have with Rudd is his attempt to score political points by demonising a Christian pastor by misrepresenting, misquoting and effectively denigrating scripture. Not surprisingly he also showed considerable ignorance of the New Testament message, basically saying that it’s all about being nice and tolerant towards all of mankind.

Mr Rudd needs to know that scripture does not portray homosexuality as a natural way of life. In fact scripture has some very strong things to say about same gender sexual relations. It says things that homosexuals would find very offensive:

“God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men” (Romans 1:26)

He also needs to know that (despite his claim) the bible doesn’t portray slavery as being a natural condition – a claim he made clearly to undermine the validity and authority of scripture (Apparently it was Aristotle who made that claim, not anyone in scripture).

And he also needs to know that gospel isn’t about being nice to each other, it’s about turning away from our tendency for rebellion against God and His standards, through putting our faith in Jesus Christ. Choosing His way above our own desires and submitting ourselves to the changes He wants to make in our lives, turning from sin – not finding ways to convince ourselves that it’s acceptable.

If Rudd had justified his changed stance on same sex marriage on secular, logical, legal grounds then I would have found his response adequate and acceptable in the context of secular government, but he foolishly chose to present a religious stance and in the process showed the shallowness of his “Christian” faith foundations and did so in a way that belittled the REAL gospel of Jesus Christ. And that’s something I can’t accept from a “Christian” who hopes to lead his country.

05
Sep
13

Before Me A Door In Heaven Opened

Before Me A Door

I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And a voice speaking to me like a trumpet said, ‘Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.’ At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it. And the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and ruby. A rainbow that shone like an emerald encircled the throne.

___________

I don’t think this is finished yet, but I’ve taken the painting as far as I can for the time being. I need to put it aside until later before I add or change anything. It’s quite likely that I’ll change the title and the related bible reference. Those that I’ve used above would mean the painting’s subject is the Apostle John, but he was approaching 100 years old when he received the visions that he recorded in the book of Revelation and the face I’ve painted is far too young for a man of that age.

04
Sep
13

Stop the Boats!

Asylum seekers coming to Australia by boat has been a major political issue for more than a decade, and the Liberal-National coalition has made a key part of their current election campaign.

The article in the link below, makes it seem like Tony Abbots political mantra “We will stop the boats”  is more an example of political newspeak* than a genuine promise he intends to fulfil.

It’s not necessarily the arrival of boats that he will stop; it’s the ANNOUNCEMENT of boat arrivals that will stop. So if the boats keep coming, we won’t know about it and it will APPEAR that they are no longer arriving.

Coalition may censor boat arrivals

http://au.news.yahoo.com/election/a/18775934/coalition-may-censor-boat-arrivals/

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*“newspeak”  see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Newspeak




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