Monthly Archives: March 2011

Another visit to the hospital!!

I spent another couple of hours at A & E late last night. From about 3pm to 10pm yesterday I somehow lost about 580ml blood into my stoma bag. The blood test at the hospital showed my haemoglobin had dropped from 112 to 95 so the doctors and specialist surgeon on duty did not consider I needed a transfusion. They sent me home at 12.30am but told me to return if bleeding persisted. By this morning there was very little new blood so just another unusual episode on the twisted journey through the valley.

What pleased me was that I could lose that much blood and not need a transfusion, and the fact that the blood was clotting well. Both positive signs

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Posted by on 11 March, 2011 in Medical, Personal


One of the King’s speeches

After cleaning up at the Oscars, The Kings Speech has generated a lot of interest in King George VI. I have attached the transcript of another radio broadcast speech of the King’s when a new front was opened in Europe in June 1944. Oh to have a King/ Queen, President or Prime Minister who would see things from the same perspective and be bold enough to declare them as King George VI did:

Four years ago our nation and Empire stood alone against an overwhelming enemy, with our backs to the wall. Tested as never before in our history, in God’s Providence we survived that test. The spirit of the people – resolute, dedicated – burnt like a bright flame, lit surely from those unseen fires which nothing can quench.

Once more the supreme test has to be faced. This time the challenge is not to fight to survive, but to fight to win the final victory for the good cause. Once again what is demanded from us all is something more than courage – more than endurance. We need a revival of spirit: a new, unconquerable resolve.

After nearly five years of toil and suffering, we must renew that crusading impulse on which we entered the war, and met its darkest hour. We, and our Allies, are sure that our fight is against evil, and for a world in which goodness and honour may be the foundation of the life of men in every land.

That we may be worthily matched with this new summons of destiny, I desire solemnly to call my people to prayer and dedication. We are not unmindful of our own shortcomings, past and present. We shall ask, no that God may do our will, but that we may be enabled to do the Will of God, and we dare to believe that God has used our Nation and Empire as an instrument for fulfilling His high purpose.

I hope that throughout the present crisis of the liberation of Europe there may be offered up earnest, continuous and widespread prayer. We, who remain in this land can most effectively enter into the sufferings of subjugated Europe by prayer, whereby we can fortify the determination of our sailors, soldiers and airmen who go forth to set the captives free.

The Queen joins with me in sending you this message. She well understands the anxieties and cares of our women folk at this time, and she knows that many of them will find, as she does herself, fresh strength and comfort in such waiting upon God. She feels that many women will be glad in this way to keep vigil with their men as they man the ships, storm the beaches and fill the skies.

At his historic moment, surely, not one of us is too busy, too young or too old, to play a part in a nation-wide, a world-wide vigil of prayer, as the great crusade sets forth.

If from every place of worship, from home and factory, from men and women of all ages and many races and occupations, our intercessions rise, then, please God, that both now and in a future not remote, the predictions of an ancient Psalm may be fulfilled:
“The Lord will give strength unto his people,
The Lord will give to his people the blessing of Peace.”

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Posted by on 7 March, 2011 in Articles


No-one knows the hour …

It has been pretty mind-numbing to watch the scenes of devastation following the Christchurch earthquake and to hear the cries of hopelessness and helplessness. It must be tough for the rescuers and searchers. It has also been interesting seeing the international aid that has poured in and where it has come from. Most from countries with cultural ties to NZ through Christian backgrounds and laws and other countries that have had citizens lost in the rubble. It has also been interesting to note the ideologies of countries that have not become involved in the rescue and recovery process. It is true that our worldview affects our compassion and a country’s religion determines its worldview.

The tumultuous event also demonstrates that none of us know the day or the hour when we are due to keep our appointment with death and to stand before the judgement seat of Christ. Ever since the sentence of death was passed on me 28 months ago in the colorectal cancer + liver and lung metastases diagnosis and prognosis, I have realised that the most important thing in life is to be ready for death whenever and however it comes. Jesus, through His death and resurrection, is the only one who can give us the peace to confront the last daunting enemy of death, whether it be slow or quick.

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Posted by on 7 March, 2011 in Devotional, Personal


Men’s camp

On Saturday I drove up to St Arnaud near Lake Rotoiti with some other men to the Hope Community Church Men’s Camp. The weather started lousy but turned hot by late morning. There were about 60 men and teenagers there and it was fun just watching boys with their grown-up toys. I did ask one man if off-road trail bikes would be half so appealing if they were quiet? There was clay-bird shooting, 4-wheel drive touring and some other cross-country adventure photographing activities we all participated in. Some blokes even made apple-guns using polythene pipes, ladies hair-spray and ignition switches to make a spark. The apples soared to great heights. The evening meal was spit-roasted wild pig and lamb. Deeeelicious!

There were also Bible studies, and I panel I sat on to answer questions. I also got to share about a series of men’s studies I will be doing at HCC over coming weeks. Everyone had a great time.

Some slept in tents, some in cars, some in the shearing shed

Meetings in the shearing shed

The camp-fire with 'apple-gun' being primed in the background

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Posted by on 7 March, 2011 in Personal


Liver bruising cleared up

The liver bruising I suffered after taking a hit on the Hanmer Springs Superbowl slide has now gone and I am free of all pain from that source. It was very painful for the 10 days I had it and a bit worrying that I was having to take morphine to function. Everything seems to be ‘normal’ again. There appear to be no aftereffects and my breathing and mobility are fine for which I am very grateful. From now on, I really will take things a little easier when it comes to adventure activities! Why do I learn things the hard way?

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Posted by on 7 March, 2011 in Medical, Personal


God’s agents are everywhere

On Sunday evening I was experiencing some acute pain in my right shoulder area. It was affecting my breathing and Bronwen felt I should get it seen to. The duty doctor arranged for a ‘non-urgent’ ambulance to collect me and take me to the Nelson Hospital A & E Dept.

As the paramedic was assessing me, it came up in conversation that I was a christian who had done mission work overseas. Nothing more was said until we arrived at the hospital. The paramedic sent his assistant to do a message, then confided in me that he too was a christian and would I be happy for him to pray with me before we went in. I agreed and was most impressed with the way he prayed: no hollow platitudes or faith avowals. Instead he asked that in whatever lay ahead for me, the Lord Himself would be glorified both in and through me.

Later, the St John’s volunteer who dispenses cups of tea to those waiting in A & E also mentioned a couple of phrases when we chatted about the Christchurch quake, such as “none of us know the day or the hour” and “Christchurch reminds us about building our lives on sand”. My interest was stirred and I soon discovered she was a member of a local Presbyterian church in the right place at the right time on Sunday night bringing comfort to a fellow believer who was in pain.

God has his agents everywhere. It is not hard to recognise them. They are mostly not the loud, brash ones. They often minister with a still small voice of wisdom.

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Posted by on 2 March, 2011 in Articles, Personal