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And they wonder why we don't respect them

At a memorial service for Nelson Mandela no less. Must have been a bit of a wheeze, eh?

Authored by Chris Hall

Favourite Podcasts #2

The logo used by Apple to represent Podcasting (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Another podcast to add to BeyondPod on my smart phone -

Back To The Gospel - Sean McIntyre!

Link to Sean's blog section for sermons
(http://www.seanmcintyre.org/category/sermons/)

Link to iTunes feed
(https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/sean-mcintyres-podcast/id774769005)

Authored by Chris Hall

My God is Awesome!

Sometimes a worship song comes along which really moves you. This one below from Pastor Charles Jenkins is one such. Awesomely so. Love the lyrics to it as well.



Authored by Chris Hall

Favourite Podcasts

The smartphone now makes it so easy to get access on the move to audio podcasts of teachings and direction from many people. Certainly I'm finding that I'm using my smartphone more in the car to listen to sound Christian teaching, doctrine and worship rather than the radio or the news.

Here's a list of people and ministries that I regularly listen to.


Messenger International with John and Lisa Bevere

Let My People Think with Ravi Zacharias

Another Day of Victory with Ulf Ekman

Daily Hope with Rick Warren

Insight For Living with Chuck Swindoll

Radical Living, Radical Life with Runnymede Christian Fellowship

Daily Radio Program with Charles Stanley
Any ministries that you'd recommend or think I would benefit from listening to?

My software of choice to listen to podcasts on my Android phone is BeyondPod.

Authored by Chris Hall

Invasion of the spiders

s. Bipunctata (Common False Widow) (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Seeing a lot in the news about the recent sightings of False Widow spiders in England. Given that it is one of the few spiders in the UK whose bite can break the skin then perhaps the worry can be understood although I expect it will die down soon with the coming of winter. It's bite can release venom and neurotoxins but it seems the more serious risk is from bacterial infection.

A good time to repost about the other forgotten invader, the Segestria Florentina or Tube Web spider. A few years ago these were harbingers of the end of Western civilisation but the world keeps spinning.

Here's some pics of one of the critters I found in my back garden a few years ago. It's big, black and with a bright green marking which gives the appearance of 'fangs'. This one flipped over on it's back when I disturbed it showing a what seems to be a well armoured body. Found another the following year in some brickwork. …

A society will be judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members

BBC News - Orchid View inquest: Pharmacist 'sickened by care home'
"Later, the inquest heard from the former regional manager Sarah O'Mara who denied claims she did not make enough visits to Orchid View, and also denied there was a policy of having no agency workers because of financial constraints.
The coroner said to her: "I haven't heard you take responsibility at all." Ah, 'responsibility', one of those old fashioned words that didn't make it into the lexicon of 21st Century Management.

Cover of Pope John Paul II "A society will be judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members" - Pope John Paul II

Authored by Chris Hall
Related articlesInquest into elderly deaths heard of inadequate careFive elderly residents died because of neglect at care home where there was 'institutionalised abuse'Daughter calls for 'dramatic changes to care system'Orchid View deaths: Inquest told of neglect and lack of support

The World Turned Upside Down

The Sermon of the Beatitudes (1886-96) by James Tissot from the series The Life of Christ, Brooklyn Museum (Photo credit: Wikipedia) In his recording of the Beatitudes St Luke says this:
Luke 6:29-30 If someone slaps you on one cheek, offer the other cheek also. If someone demands your coat, offer your shirt also. Give to anyone who asks; and when things are taken away from you, don’t try to get them back. Whilst it has a purpose for this world I don't think it was really meant as an operating procedure for the Metropolitan Police.

According to The Independent.
Police in north London have seized blankets, sleeping bags and food donations from rough sleepers in a crackdown on homelessness.
A local paper reported that the belongings, mostly donated by sympathetic members of the community, were snatched by police from a group of homeless people as they sheltered in an abandoned public baths for the night.
The nine people, including a man in his sixties, were seeking cover from a cold…

Being Honest in the Christian Life

Something is really playing on my spirit at the moment. It's something that I'm hearing from people close to me and I find myself cringing every time I hear it. It's the concept that how good your day, your life, your relationships are is dependent upon how you verbalise it and how your own state of mind is towards it.

In the secular world I come across it as 'positive thinking' or 'self-help'. Often you'll find that it gets intertwined with 'New Age' concepts.

In the church I look upon it as an aspect of the 'Confession and Prosperity Doctrine' or 'Name It and Claim It'. Only an aspect though, something small yet something subversive.

I'll raise my flag here right at the beginning. Believer or not, shit happens. I don't believe that being a child of God gives us a Get Out of Jail card that we can throw at life's slings and arrows. An episode of Postman Pat summed it up beautifully for me. Pat was delivering to the ch…

Tolkien the Anarchist!

Cover of J.R.R. Tolkien “My political opinions lean more and more to Anarchy (philosophically understood, meaning the abolition of control not whiskered men with bombs) — or to ‘unconstitutional’ Monarchy. I would arrest anybody who uses the word State (in any sense other than the inaminate real of England and its inhabitants, a thing that has neither power, rights nor mind); and after a chance of recantation, execute them if they remained obstinate! If we could go back to personal names, it would do a lot of good.

Government is an abstract noun meaning the art and process of governing and it should be an offence to write it with a capital G or so to refer to people … The most improper job of any many, even saints (who at any rate were at least unwilling to take it on), is bossing other men. Not one in a million is fit for it, and least of all those who seek the opportunity …

There is only one bright spot and that is the growing habit of disgruntled men of dynamating factories and pow…

Google+ Commenting

English: Google+ wordmark (Photo credit: Wikipedia) I think I'm going to try again with the Google+ commenting system.

Don't know if they've specced it up yet to accept non gmail commentators, will have to see.

Authored by Chris Hall

Cricket, Incredible catch assist on boundary.

Not a cricket fan but this really is impressive! Co-ordination, athleticism and teamwork.



 Authored by Chris Hall

Is it really so black and white?

English: Nakumatt Westgate in Westlands, Nairobi (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
There have been a number of attacks by what I will politely describe as 'Islamists' across the world in the last few days. One has made the headlines full time in the Western media. Another got a mention but was rapidly relegated from the headlines. Yet another was rarely mentioned and was probably not noticed by many people.

Let's have a look at these attacks:

Kenya, Nairobi, Westgate Shopping Centre

An armed group enters and takes control of the prestigious Westgate Shopping Centre. Those who are deemed to be Muslim from the answer given as to what was the name of Mohammed's mother were allowed to leave. Those remaining were cut down with grenades and bullets and others retained as hostages. So far 62 people have been killed and 170 injured.

Pakistan, Peshawar, All Saints Anglican Church

Two 'suicide' bombers targeted the church during the celebrations for Mass and blew themselves up, ki…

Obama's Tweet

Whipped off Twitter.

Comedy gold!



Authored by Chris Hall

The Battle for Spain: The Spanish Civil War 1936-1939

Spanish civil war monument (Photo credit: pixelnaiad) Just finished reading Anthony Beevor's book The Battle for Spain: The Spanish Civil War 1936-1939 and it really is an eye opener. I've already read a couple of works on The Spanish Civil war such as Orwell's Homage to Catalonia, William Rust's Britons in Spain, the History of the British Battalion of the XVth International Brigade and some references in Jack Jones' autobiography Union Man. But nothing of the horror comes across in those references as it does in Beevor's book. The Spanish Civil War really did nail down the adage that there's nothing civil in a civil war.

So Beevor's book tries to take an unbiased overview of the timeline of the awful events and I think he succeeds well. Neither the Republican or Nationalist forces and their respective backers come out well. Everyone is tarnished.

I'm not going to write a review but instead highlight some points which have stuck with me after finis…