Sunday, December 31, 2006

What I will take from 2006

I took this afternoon to translate some retrospective that I've done at my brazilian blog, this is the objective of this blog, but I have not done so much as I would like, but this is the moment to share it again! This year I have plant so many things that it is difficult to think 2006 as a year, because as you will see I have lots of things to be developed with basis build this year:

  • Hospital - I stayed a weekend at hospital because of a kidney stone, but it was not so complicated as the pneumonia my doughter got. She spent 16 days at hospital, I think my life stopped completely, it is hard to move on things while your thinks are on people you love. But it was a time when we could know better God's mercy and grace, mainly with the reaction of our friends and friends of my kid.

  • Projeto Mandaqui- This year we could really move on this church planting project. Though we are few yet, we spent the year preparing ourselves and dreaming for our mission. Even with serious problems that happened to each family of our project, we could end this year with weekly regular meetings, and I thought it as a great conquer! Next year will be the time to spread our project and to leverage our base group. I expect also that being on Mosaic conference, Origins at May, will be very important to return Brazil motivated a lot and also better prepared to build an innovative community that should spread a vivid message to North Zone of São Paulo.

  • Emergent Conversation- I should also highlight how good was to start meeting with other folks in São Paulo that are well interested to Emergent Church. We started with Sandro Baggio that have a great emergent community called Projeto 242, we started to meet, to learn and discuss what we have found at websites, at books and at our current evangelical context. We had just five meetings but those was very deep when I learned a lot. Next year we are preparing to promote some events to all people in order to have emergent church issues better known, our first event will be in March, I will let you know how it will be.

  • Nooma - At those meetings, I was presented to those DVDs, I have got very enthusiastic with this very rich material, not only for how spirituality is dealt but also for seeing a kind of communication that could talk to everyone whithout focusing just evangelical people. I could import all collection and apply to some meetings at Mandaqui Project, I am planning also to reach a larger people on January with some sessions at my home.

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    My reading in 2006

    As I have already done at my brazilian blog, I would like to highlight five books from all I read this year, due to Mandaqui Project I have been directed my reading to prepare myself for this mission, here you have:

  • The Emerging Church, Eddie Gibbs e Ryan Bolger - I thought it a very well prepared book about paradigm shift with post-modernity and how some communities are dealing with that, I could even dedicate some posts in my brazilian blog to describe the ten factors present to most emergent churches once this book is not translated to portuguese, and I doubt it will. As I have seen in other blogs and after reading it, I thought it a great book to understand Emergent Church.

  • The Shaping of things to come, Michael Frost e Alan Hirsch - despite the fact I've been reading this book since October and not finished yet, I thought it another great book to understand the emergent church, I thought content very rich and very well based.

  • Velvet Elvis, Rob Bell - I started to know Nooma, this year and I have got very well impressed with the way Rob Bell deals with spirituality, I saw this book as basis for the theology purposed at Nooma.

  • Everybody is Normal Till you get to know them, John Ortberg - I think community matters so much, community issues are so important to be discussed and so complicated to live! Author discusses the main matters to be shared and facilitates understanding of this issue, I think John Ortberg simplicity and good mood helps a lot to translate concepts to overall people in community, I think of his books as very good to work at church.

  • Leadership from Unlikely voices, Dave Flemming - nothing as a leadership book with christian basis without all the business things that most pastors love to apply at church!.

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    Originally uploaded by Lufe Batista.
    Yesterday we had our second round of Monopoly (Disney edition), and my doughter did it again! By first time I thought it was due her posessions of companies, but yesterday my wife got all companies and even with those got very close to bankruptcy, but I couldn't avoid it!
    Once again we set midnight to close everything, but I went bankruptcy prior to that.
    Though Maria Ester is not at all very used to change and to the rents table, she showed to be very lucky, some times the best strategy is not to have one!

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    Tuesday, December 19, 2006

    Close to Christmas!

    Christmas dinner is next Sunday! Wow! If were not the Christmas songs last service I would not figure out we were on Christmas time! As I spent last week in Bogota at work, my December got very shorter, Saturday was my only free time to buy gifts for family.
    Last Friday we did our last meeting at Projeto Mandaqui, we remember of the kings` gifts for Jesus and changed gifts between one another. We might spent the new year day together, and after, we will have January out, just returning on February, I will spend a week out on this month as my other folks too.
    I believe we have got a good improvement when we started to meet weekly after October, we haven`t many people joining us as I wished, but I have a great hope that people will come on the dynamics of our relationships, as far as we have a weekly meeting, we will have allways this opportunity to bring new people here.
    We are planing a small camping retreat at Carnaval, a particular retreat for people like us, young couples with little children, this might be another opportunity to have new people with us, and an opportunity to get focus on our project.
    My hope is on God that things will happen in 2007 for Projeto Mandaqui!

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    Saturday, October 07, 2006

    As you passed here

    To tell that life has been such crazy is not so new, I've weaked up today likelly to post anything, so I would like to tell you some news: we are moving ahead our church planting in Mandaqui, we are very conscious of our condition, we are two christian families with small children dreaming to plant a church here in São Paulo, after meeting sometimes at Sundays to be pastored we have started yesterday to meet at a weekly basis open to friends to come, we know that as we have kids and babies, our meetings will be often interrupted by babies demands but that is who we are! We don't have other christian families to join us, now that's us facing outside our families with a very good support from a pastor friend of mine, he is also planting a church in his city 60 kilometers from here.
    I feel that I have written a lot here about this church planting, but now is the moment to act more than to ramble, to act more on relationships, to know what to do, how to do, how to invite our friends and how to be friend regardless of this church planting.
    We are very eager to have new people to join us, and in its sense I ask for your prayers.
    I will keep you informed

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    Wednesday, September 20, 2006

    Poor guys!

    They are allways the last here in my home!

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    Saturday, September 02, 2006

    Very blocked

    Well, very long time with no post, everytime when I open my blog to access others that pendency comes to my mind!
    Since the only time to post and to visit other blogs were reduced to my nights and weekends I have been very challenged to do it without been so away from my kids, it is I have to organize myself to have a good time with my kids and to have fun here.
    I am not thinking about closing this blog, I have met amazing guys through it, but unless I get to be very organized here I will still be slower than I desire to.
    Our church planting in Mandaqui have also been at slow pace, but we have been at least kept our focus, on next weeks we might define our help and I hope to have faster steps from this month on.
    Today is my baby birthday, so I have to go to fill up some balloons.
    See you later!

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    Saturday, July 01, 2006


    As game was set to Saturday there was no great arrengement for this game, I spent my morning with my baby seeing Portugal vs. England, and we could see Brazil vs. France at my home, quietly with my wife.
    Again, there was no great game and even with Ronaldinho more forward we could do nothing, our team was so apaethic and it seems the team went to see France play, again we saw the team exchanging ball between the defense players until the goal keeper, a kind of playing that got me nervous lots of times this World Cup, and France scored and we could see no great reaction.
    Our country will be back to life and we will see our team coming back to our continent together with Argentina.
    C'est la vie! As we tell in Brazil, we are France's customers now!
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    Tuesday, June 27, 2006

    It was bad but it is good yet!

    As game today was scheduled at 12:00, we were not able be dismissed to go home, we had to see the game at office with our collegies, our people set up the projector and we could see a very good image of game, I took a quick visit at McDonald's and ordered my meal to be eaten at beggining of the game.
    Seeing Brazil vs Ghana at office was fun, but I had to keep my mood to myself, all leaders was there too, it was fun to listen a lots of tips to the players, complains to our uncreative midfield, to our coach and to the unhappy comments of Galvão Bueno.
    Fortunately we won the game, Ronaldo scored again and became the greater scorer of World Cup, our team scored the 200th goal in World Cups and we are at quarterfinals. I was very concern with the phisical advantadge of Ghana, but the match went almost fina, 3 goals is very much at football, but it was not good seeing our team playing directly at defense wating for counter attack, lucklly, very lucklly Ghana scorers was so unhappy to make goals, they got plenty of opportunities but were unable to score one, people are talking against our defense, but I think our defense is playing very fine! They at least made the conditions to kick very difficult!
    I got nervous until 80' and just later I could be sure we would make another step away.
    It's good the match will be against France, it will be a good opportunity for revenge for 1986 (Yeah, I remember) and 1998!
    Here a Photo I liked very much with the 15 goals of the fat one of our team:

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    Sunday, June 25, 2006

    We are very kind too!

    There was an experience made by Reader's Digest to find where you will find most cortesy, New York got the first place, but São Paulo got the 4th!!!
    Check it here
    By the way, thank you for reading my blog!

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    Friday, June 23, 2006

    Now it's just 16!!!

    The First stage has just finished with very few surprises, this stage was almost boring, this because most of the groups were already defined before third round.
    May be Ecuador and Australia had a very great first stage, I expected also that South Korea could go ahead instead of France, but they deserved it. My great disappointment was with Serbia and Ivory Coast, none of them could take Argentina out on the first stage like happened last year!

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    Thursday, June 22, 2006

    Well done!

    Brazil 4 x 1 Japan
    I didn't have a great expectation about this game becasuse, after Japan's game against Australia, they was not showing a very competitive soccer and losing for Japan for me simply was not an option. I believe not being arrogant with this, but though last games were not so fabulous for Brazil, we still have a great team.
    That is why I have got angry with the first goal against Brazil, and it went a long time without suffering any goal, when I was thinking our defense were doing so well! And there came the goals from Ronaldo (for the happiness of Galvão Bueno, comentator of TV Globo that is leading a campain supporting him), Gilberto, Juninho Pernambucano (who I thought would play against Australia and scores a goal in every match for Brazil) and Ronaldo again. Now he is the top scorer tied to Miller (though Argentinean commentators likes to remember that Miller scored the 14 goals in World cups in fewer matchs). I could not have a great fun with that because for me those goals were like an obligation.
    Now it is serious, against Ghana we will not meet a so fragile defense and we should not commit those mistakes again.
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    Sunday, June 18, 2006


    I'm back from my friends home where we could see Brazil x Australia, our brazilian team was not as terrible as the team list shows but we could make it!
    First goal was my preferred because the ball started from Ronaldinho Gaucho and went to Ronaldo and after to Adriano, they're terrible players, we are expecting more from them and if you give them space to play that is what happens.
    I know Gus Hiddnik is a very good coach and if I were him I would do the same, the think is to close all space to stop the ball. And we, Brazil, need more creativity to get along with it.
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    Thursday, June 15, 2006

    Mandaqui Project - Challenge and Prayers

    Last saturday we could resume to our biweekly meetings, we have arose some challenges that need prayers:

  • We need a church to send us, we need a visionary church with a mind open think in order to not suffocate us, but a church that could help us and could send us, because we cannot send ourselves; in this matter we will recognize God's approvement on our project
  • We need a solution to our children, our wives efforts to ministry to children have been tremendous but they are very needed when we are defining our group without let children without ministry, we need in this matter a very creative solution.

  • We count on your prayers

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    Culture piracy

    Copia Originale, by Torephoto
    Weeks ago I was talking with a group of friends about issues regarding emerging church and church culture. One of the guys was complaining about how church most of the times goes after culture and ends copying what culture presents instead of setting new patterns for culture, he explained mostly with musical examples.
    That made me think: How to spread the gospel and become really relevant to cuture?
    Beggining with Paul, (at I Co 9:19-23 NIV , but more conclusive at The Message) we started to think about strategies to reach people of other cultures, and in order to be relevant to their cultures, we started to state a kind of missionary approach:
  • go to places where we can assess culture,

  • get what are relevant to them,

  • apply message to culture elements risen

  • and launch the efforts to present Gospel with the culture elements of people in order to make them understand our message,

  • isn't that right?

    Sometimes not so much! Those items can become too summarized when we insert lens to the process. Things are not so simple. The thing is how we get cultural elements to become relevant to the culture?
    And my answer came when I could recognize the difference between copying cultural elements and diving into culture.
    Long ago a pastor was planning to preach at a kind of neighbor and told me that we should learn how to play samba as they liked, the thing was that we didn't like samba as the neighbors liked (not allbody in Brazil likes samba), if we rehearsed some samba music or compose some samba the results should be a disaster, mostly because it would lack authenticity.
    And this is the big ingredient that makes the difference when thinking about relevance, we have screwed up lots of thinks when we went to people thinking about spreading the gospel to them but thinking about them as targets, going to them with second thoughts. This is the danger of friendship evangelism, because you think first about evangelize and thinking about being friend in order to get very well impressed and to make them accept Jesus as saviour. Authenticity lacks here, if your friend does not accept your message, would you abandon him and go after another target?
    Unfortunately, these kind of urgency approach made us pirates with piracy music, piracy friendship and piracy culture. The music is not so real, its our music in another style, the art is not real, it's message without core.
    In this talk, a pastor quoted Francis Shaeffer when told that unfortunataly, church has been had a very utilitarian use of art, which has made them lack this so need authenticity. Art is expression, not strategy.
    I have learned that diving into culture requires a though job harder than just copying elements of culture. A more authentic approach makes you walk among people, learn with them, getting interest about them and present the difference of Jesus Chirst that applies to any culture.

    Originally posted at Dream Awakener

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    Wednesday, June 14, 2006

    I highlited in the morning

    "When I hear the voices accusing me, or accusing someone else in my thoughts, and I can't see who it is in the darkness, I need to remember who is really on the mat with me. It isn't my roomate or coworker or wife. I need to remember it is Satan face. My enemy is the same one who tempted Adam and Eve in the garden - and Jesus in another garder." Paul Thorson, Paiting in the dark

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    Tuesday, June 13, 2006

    It's Show Time!!! Brazil starts today!!!

    World Cup excitement begun here two weeks ago and since them it's all that have been talked so.
    Mc Donald's started to sell special sandwiches based on the seven winners of the cup (Italy, Germany, French, England, Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina). At TV most of the commercial it's about World Cup.
    In the previous week people started to decorate streets with Brazil's flags and green and yellow colors, as I live at an apartment I decorated our office at Tuesday with balloons, ribons and our Brazilian flag.
    We have a great expectation for this cup as we have won the last and at this cup we have an even better team with four of the best forward players of the world.
    Today, the day of our debut, we could see lots of people dressed with yellow or green shirts and lots of cars with brazilian flags, the world cup excitement is at the air. We could leave office at 3 in order to see the Brazil and Croatia, all offices closed to it and almost nothing works during game time.
    First half has ended and it's already 1x0 to Brazil, go Brazil!!! Let's get our sixth!!!

    Saturday, May 27, 2006

    Two more books finished

    This week, I was able to finish reading two books:
    Orbiting the Giant Hairball, Gordon Mackenzie - This book was strongly recommended to me by Pastor Sandro Baggio, this is a book mostly about creativity, not with techniques, but with lots of stories and reflections about how the contemporary thinking, very standarlized by our industrial and economic system, is eroding our capacity to create and to be original. He compared most of our business systems like a Hairball, you have an idea and start make money with that and you have a hair, in order to have more control of your new company you starts a culture, and attaches policies, procedures, benchmarks, each of that is another hair unit that is tied to your idea and origin a hairball, but once you are at the hairball, you cannot think anything new outside the hairball, you can only get anything new when you start to orbitate the hairball in the space of ideas, but not far enough to loose touch with the hairball and starts to be etereal and your ideas loose reality.
    That's it! There are 24 very funny stories about Mckenzie experience at Hallmark, which I also compared with my experiences at Market Place but mainly with Presbiterian church, where I have a great interest to give something new in this kind of environment.
    Finding Faith, Brian McLaren, I felt very interested about this book when McLaren himself recommended at his another book "More Ready than you realize" as one of the rare postmodern apologetic books. I was told this book as very like Mere Christianity, from C.S. Lewis, and I found a very good book about spirituality search. I liked the honest way McLaren discussed and walked on the spirituality way. It would be a book I would recommend to a friend with a search for God, but it would be after Mere Chrisitanity. I liked very much how McLaren defined faith and how he recommended a church, as long as I am very concerned about the kind of church I would like to plant here in São Paulo, those chapters helped me in a lots of issues that I should value to reach people today at my city. I planned to read this book aside with Mere Christianity, but after the pastor of our planting group lended me The Contemporary Christian, I will set a chance for rereading Mere Christianity later.

    There is a third book, The Contemporary Christian, from John Stott that left two chapters to finish, great book also!

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    Posts now... just out of office

    This week my explorer at office was unable to access most of the blogs that doesn't have own address, weblogs derivates sites also are unavailable at office like Technorati, Blogger, Flickr etc.
    Posts now, just at nights and weekends at home.

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    Thursday, April 20, 2006

    For a matter of being cosmopolitan

    You Belong in London

    You belong in London, but you belong in many cities... Hong Kong, San Francisco, Sidney. You fit in almost anywhere.
    And London is diverse and international enough to satisfy many of your tastes. From curry to Shakespeare, London (almost) has it all!

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    I have seen in some blogs this kind of tool and seen as a matter of tendency in the blogosphere, I don't know if I understood this enough, but I am trying now for a matter of easy search and to deep the issues.
    If my tagging is not good enough I appreciate your help

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    Sunday, April 09, 2006

    Growing Faith, are you ready?

    my first sunflower, Sabrina Stash

    On beggining of his book "Finding Faith" Brian McLaren starts to define how faith does grow:
    1st stage - Simplicity - at the beggining things are right or wrong, black or white and the follower see things in a very dualistic view, following the authority will make him be in the good side while others would be at the bad side, identifiying who's the enemies is the great deal;
    2nd Stage - Complextity - faith gains complexity and the follower try to be effective in his faith and to get independance on getting trained by his authorities, he identifies other alternatives to do things and looks for the best way, he tries to be more pragmatic at this stage;
    3rd stage - Perplexity - Here he makes more judgements and tries to find autenticity at relationships, the follower recognizes that he does not own the Truth when accepting other point of views, he tries to be fully honest with others and with himself and allows himself to question about his faith. Though, he run of being controlled as it was at previous stages.
    4th stage - Humility - He recognizes other stages, recognizes weakenesses of others at previous stages of faith, but try take advantadge of his journey to help others and to fullfill all his potential.
    Beside to think about what stage am I, I was wondering about how the churches close to me deal with this kind of faith growth. Here in Sao Paulo you can find lots of churches in all paths you choose, but I believe the great majority (about 80%) are more likely to recieve people from the first stage of faith and works to their followers stay at this level, they like to works with fear, to set enemies and to disencouraging questioning when tell that questioning might be the tool of devil to start new heresies; also, I can see most of the traditional churches working with stage 2 of faith, stimulating a more pragmatic view , training followers to be more effective but not as far as to free stimulating ideas. Some people will get accomodated, but some will have their faith growing, and when it happens, they will look for another place if their church does not receive their growth with genuine interest.
    This kind of evolution is also reflection of our history, once we were very well prepared studying Evangelism Explosion or taking with us the booklet Four Spiritual Laws to evangelize, but today many people will not accept these tools as much as they accepted before.
    As long as we are preparing for the starting of a church I wonder: Are we prepared to receive people from 3rd stages on? Will we be prepared to foster and encourage this kind of growth of faith?

    Thursday, March 23, 2006

    In this present Darkness

    WebMuseum Paris - Bosh Hieronimus: The Temptation of St. Anthony

    Years ago, I was presented to “This Present Darkness” from Frank Peretti, it was my first 200 pages book that I could read in a week. Thanks to this book it was a time when we started to talk a lot about Spiritual Battles and the importance of prayer. Frank’s very good narrative gave us a view like movie scenes of what Temptation could be and how we could succeed in this kind of war.
    However, people here in Brazil started to go away from the message of importance of prayer and readiness. People started to develop a kind of mystical theology where they could draw maps of the city with regions where certain devils would operate, very detailed hierarchies for angels and devils, tools to defeat devils etc... This kind of influence developed a kind of church that is steady until now.
    Latelly I have finished a book older than “The Present Darkness”, it was “Screwtape letters” from C.S. Lewis. I though it a somewhat humourus book where we can taste another close description about how we get tempted. But the idea is not close to the conspiration showed at TPD, temptation at SL is much more subtle, danger is not an heresy or a new kind of order that would take place, but danger is inside ourselves: our pride, our perfectionism, our agenda, our kind of spirituality, our own matters. I believe temptation in this book is also more lethal. Devil is not so interested about how world is going on, but only if it can help him take lives away from God.
    But my point here is: if this book came earlier, why did this book not have the same impact that TPD had? Would people rather hunt devils and save his neighborhood than to realize how their ego is jeopardizing their marriage? Might it became more interesting to defeat new age heresy than to defeat their kind of spirituality that is taking them away from the care of people close to them?
    I believe this situation arises the fact of how we run for confronting ourselves and for admiting our falts. Raw Material of temptation at Screwtape Letters are located inside ourselves, we are just stimulated, and our evil desire makes all work. But when we pretend to exercise our heroism, evil is located outside us and we could fade our weakeness and our dependance on the grace of God.
    I remember of Rm 12:3 when we are exhorted to have a real figure of ourselves. I believe this is the origin of evil defeatness, when we are aware of ourselves, of our weakeness, of our evil nature and start to depend on God to win His battles.

    Sunday, March 05, 2006

    Two Questions for you abroad

    - I had not seen the first season of Lost, if I start to see from the second season on, will I understand what is being happen?
    - I was looking for Christian Children resourses at Internet, do you have a good one to me?

    Thanks for your help!

    Wednesday, March 01, 2006

    Lent Challenge

    Last years I have been learning about taking seriously Lent period, in Brazil Lent is not observed by any of the evangelical churches, Lent is seen just as Catholic issue, but I have learned how important is to observe and reflect about Easter and Life and Death of Jesus for us.
    What to do on Lent?
    - There is populating in blogosphere OrangeJack Lent Challenge, he purposes reading all gospels in this period. I'm in! And it begins today, of course.
    - I also found at "ship of fools" 40 ideas for Lent, very interesting.

    Monday, February 27, 2006

    Carnaval: License to sin

    Carnaval in Rio, by VideoVik
    It's Carnaval in Brazil, today Carnaval is all that TV is showing about. There is beautifull parades in great cities and, all night parties at street and at some clubs.
    This is our biggest holliday closing our summer,(it's ever on Tuesday, and people back to work after Wednesday ashes) as it usually stays at the beggining of the year, most people (and even business) uses to take the year seriously just after Carnaval, it is because people uses to set up their vacations until Carnaval and after that, most people are back to work. Even churches have slow attendances in January and waits for this holliday to make some camps and after that, to start their seasons.
    Carnaval was a ancient party tolerated by church where people used to have a more free behavour before observing lent, this is the spirit of the party here (except for the observation of lent), people go to party very ready for casual sex. We have lots of parties at TV showing very liberal behaviour.
    It is ironic the origin of this party, it implies a very religious concern but in a legalistic context. It is, you are free to sin now, because when lent starts you will be santificating yourselves and you will not have this opportunity. In this context, sin is a need to be avoided instead of a bad thing that brings bad consequences to ourselves and to our relationships with God.
    I believe this all happens because the way churches and religious people has preached about sanctification. Preaching against sin requires you mostly that you know how to persuade based on what you have learned, but showing a santificated life requires you integral practice of what you have learned. We know the way of God is allways the best, but how have we proved it? And how have we shown it? (James 1:22-25)
    If you are thinking if you already read it last year, you did. I rewrited this text to be posted at Dream Awakener

    Tuesday, February 21, 2006

    Bono's Prophetic Vox

    Yesterday we had a terrific show of U2 for 70.000 people here in São Paulo, today we will have another one, but I could see the show at TV, unfortunately tickets was very difficult to get and was beyond what we could afford to (phisically and financially).
    Today I have found at J.R.Woodward part from an enterview with Eugene Peterson talking about U2 and their prophetic voice.
    Worth to read!

    Saturday, February 18, 2006

    Just Started!

    Yesterday we have our first meeting to plant a new church in North Side of Sao Paulo. We could count on nine adults, four kids and trhee babies for this first meeting. We could talk about our thoughs and emotions on planting a church and meditate on our needs of relationship rather than our cronogram on planting a new community here.
    I am happy to see this start up, we know we are beggining a journey, and not a small one. On this journey we will surely have more people gathered to us as well as some people leaving us on the way. But though we are far yet from effectivily planting this church, we had a hard way to get to this point, and I am so thankfull to see this dream of a new community comming true.
    Counting on your prayers! We are just beggining. Our next meeting will be on March 3rd.

    Equipper Blogs

    On February, Kairos L.A. is lauching Equipper Blogs, I could saw JR Woodward project regarding those blogs and I found a very good plan that should cover most of what our churches need to be relevant today. Today those blogs are integrated to Woodward church, but he has plans also to cover a broader range of churches in this network.
    I am participating on Dream Awakener blogs and the post below was my first participation on that. I would encourage you to follow what is going on these blogs:
    Dream Awakener (Apostles)
    Heart Revealer (Prophets)
    Story Teller (Evangelists)
    Soul Healer (Pastors)
    Light Giver (Teachers)

    Should we be indignated too?

    Crowd, by amberdc
    It was not difficult to be impressioned on those reactions to Mohammad cartoon crisis, as with many things in Muslim lives, Islam showed a great zealously in their faith. Besides every controversy regarding press liberty or free attack to faith, in those times we are not free from comparisions, should we also react with such indignation? To what?
    Should we indignate to people that deny God or mistreat Jesus as the son of God? Should we indignate to films that cheat on people that follow Jesus? Should we defend Jesus to defend our faith?
    Considering the example from Jesus, his counter-reaction was not so alike, he sttoped Peter when he tried to defend him, He even healed the soldier that was arresting him (Mt 26:47-56), also, He cried to God to forgive people because they were not knowing what were doing (Lk 23:26-43).
    But Jesus reaction was far from doing nothing, he reacted with Love. As told in Mt 25:31-46 He directed our indignation to unfair situations and our reaction to service.
    If we wanted to defend him, we should see him as the hungry people, or as the thirsty people, or as the homeless, or as the shivering, of as the sicks or as the prisioners we see everyday, and react to this situation with service and love.
    Yes, we should also be indignated! Instead of getting flags, lets get ourselves and react!

    Wednesday, February 15, 2006

    Starting up

    Friday will be the day we will meet people invited to join us to church planting. I had very good responses and it is good to know that people invited were praying about it and are seeing this gathering a prayer answer!
    I expect to joing nine adults, three children and three babies for this first meeting. We are walking with prayer and after this first meeting, we might have a better idea of how things will go on.
    I have already found a good place to start meeting for our outreach programs, it is a hotel facility that would rent at a very good price to a small group like us.
    Also, we have a very good responses from people that is following this church planting with prayers and it is the most important, I am counting also with yours!

    Understanding the Bible

    I have just read Understanding the Bible, from John Stott. In a midst of very good relaunches, one of our great editors launched this one.
    I thought this book simplier than I would thing regarding Stott's books, he gave a very good summary of Old and New Testaments, summaries with nice details and edited by a way that would give the reader a very good understanding of what he is reading, specially when reading the Kings and prophets stories. I usually like to read Bible from Genesis to Revelations, and this kind of summary help me even more.
    He gave us some reasons to trust Bible and the people that wrote Bible. Also, gave us some good tips about understanding and applying Bible truths by a very honest way.
    We have a surge of lots of evangelical churches based on prosperity which sell truths very different that what was purposed from Bible, or purposed to a very different people by a different way. This is why I see Bible study as vital for our communities today, we need to search even more the Bible to get deep wisdom to help us and to reach people that are starving for it.

    Friday, February 10, 2006

    We are there too!

    Though I saw snow just once in my life when I was in Chicago, five years ago. I love to see those winter sports and I am also glad when Winter Olympic games starts also. We might rarely have snow in all our territory but our staff in Turim is a very nice group.
    Go Brazil!!!

    Thursday, January 26, 2006

    Close to decision

    Once I was dreaming of planting a church, but I had plenty of dreams a friend to talk about it and a great wish to fullfill them but so far to be fullfilled, that I could only pray about them. I felt there was like a lost link between the dreams I had and the condition I was.
    As I told in previous post, a pastor friend of mine could move close to my town and joined us to these dreams, but also got his church assistance and after that we started not only to pray and dream but also to pray and plan.
    We have talked about planting a church in north side of Sao Paulo, we have plenty of churches here in my region, some presbiterian churches in north side of my city, but it is hard to find one that dare to have a better communication to reach souls and to dare to implement agressive vision.
    And now we are planning to plant a good alternative here. In Mandaqui, a neighborhood in north side of São Paulo. Our region have few commercial and business centers but we have plenty of houses here. People live here and works in other places of our city.
    After previous conversations we are foreseeing the date of February 17 to make our first meeting, we are planning to congregate in this first meeting families that once had a very close commitment to some churches but, after some sad experiences are not so like now.
    Until February 17 we have 3 concerns:
    - Our group: We are counting with three families for our kick off: seven adults, three children and three babies. We are also inviting more three families to attend first meetings. We are looking forward to consolidate our group from 10 to 20 people and starting some outreach events for unchurched.
    - A place: Here in Brazil it is not as common to find cafes that should receive our meetings, even more when we have families with children and babies, for our first two meetings we are planning to make in my appartment and later we are searching for meeting rooms at hotels of our region.
    - Our children: We have now four children with 6 years average, and the families we are inviting are also in their beggining too. For first meetings we will search for help in order to entertain our children while we consolidate our group. After, when we start outreach events we ourselves must be prepared not to entertain but to reach children also.

    Well it have been very exciting days, but days which I feel so dependend on God, we need Him to be the first in all process, and for this case I ask for your prayers.
    As soon as we walk ahead, I will share our news.

    Tuesday, January 10, 2006

    A good quote to start up 2006!

    With this new year I started to read "Leadership wisdom from unlikely voices", a very nice book for emergent leaders, so far I have liked very much. Dave Flemming have collected many good quotes and I would like to share one here:

    "It is far easier, though not very easy, to develop and preserve a spiritual outlook on life, than it is to make our everyday actions harmonise with that spiritual outlook. That means trying to see things, persons and choices from the angle of eternity; and dealing with tem as part of the material in which the spirit works" (Evelyn Underhill)

    Actually I don't think to develop a spiritual outlook on life easy, for me, seeing things from the angle of eternity is a real challenge to me. I believe that our great spiritual conquests have this condition behind.
    Anyway that is a great challenge for me this year.