Blog

Disturbing the comfortable & comforting the disturbed.

Staff thoughts and life lessons about poverty, injustice, leadership, religion and other social issues in the world today.

Who's the standard here?

Thoughts by Dave Blundell – 5 minute read

We live in such a critical age. Why is it so deeply engrained in us to make ourselves the standard by which we evaluate other people? I think the answer to that question lies in our self-centered default. If we are the centre of our lives, we evaluate others by the filter of ourself. The more full of myself I am, the more I become God’s gift to the world that everyone should endeavor to be like. 

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Don't Just Stand There

Thoughts by Daniel Mack – 4 minute read

A few months ago, I wrote a blog called "What Does the Bible Say About Relief & Development?” There I made the claim, “...the Bible is significant and it has a significant amount to say about Relief and Development.” And, I’ll be the first to take the title, “Captain Obvious” on that one. But, looking back now, I feel like I shortchanged part of the conversation. Even though I quoted what probably seemed like half the Bible in that blog, I left out an important element: “Application.”

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What the Church is Not

Thoughts by Daniel Mack – 5 minute read

Every Christian arrives at their beliefs with preconceived notions. We carry fears, opinions and images into our perspective. Early on, these ideas (both positive and negative) shape our interactions. We might push away from Christ, His followers, and their activities based on our past experience. Or, we could feel led to learn more, to draw closer and seek Jesus because of who we understand these people to be. And, while God can bring someone from a harsh negative opinion of the Church (take Paul for example) just as easily as he can bring someone who has seen the warm disposition of Jesus (take Peter for example) to faith, I believe Christians can always do a better job of removing those obstacles. We don’t have to be the source of someone else’s negative opinion of the Church.

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Foreigners in “Our” Land!

Thoughts by Dave Blundell – 4 minute read

I am generally super careful about generalizations. But, anyone who has a problem with immigration—especially immigration based on desperate need—must be motivated by a threat to “our” way of life. By “our way of life” I mean religiously, socially, economically or just the simple preference to be around people who are “normal”… like me. “America (Canada) First” or any type of nationalistic protectionism is a profoundly self-centered position. 

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The Lever of Leadership

Thoughts by Dave Blundell – 2 minute read

Think for a minute about how much of human history, good and bad, has been impacted by a relatively small group of people. Constantine, Machiavelli, Martin Luther, Gandhi, Abraham Lincoln, Hitler, Billy Graham, Churchill, Martin Luther King Jr., for example, all have one simple thing in common. They are all leaders. Admittedly, this particular list is a sphere of leadership relatively few of us will ever operate in. However, the principle still applies regardless of how many people you lead. Whether you lead a classroom of students or a nation, the weight is heavy but the opportunity is the stuff that literally makes history. 

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What Does the Bible Say About Relief & Development?

Thoughts by Daniel Mack – 7 minute read

Christians know that the Bible is both a guide to life in this world and a defiant claim against what the world says we should be. Our source is—in my opinion—the most fascinating and, at the same time, challenging work ever written.

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Moments

Thoughts by Daniel Mack – 5 minute read

For most people who find themselves in the world of Relief and Development, they usually ended up there because of a life changing moment. A decision they made based on a culmination of events: They saw some incredible injustice, they were prompted by a move of God’s Spirit, or they were nudged by the gifts others saw in their lives. In that moment, something moved them, something significant happened, it changed them. It changed their direction.

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Leading Open and Closed People

Thoughts by Dave Blundell – 4 minute read

When it comes to leading difficult people, who do you continue to invest in and who do you stop spending time and energy on? We all work with people who can be difficult to lead. In fact, the strength of our leadership relies on leading other strong leaders. Leading followers is fairly straight forward but leading leaders is all together more challenging. When we work with people, leaders or not, we will inevitably agonize with the question of who do we continue to pour energy and effort into and who do we not. 

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2017 - A year in review

Thoughts by Dave Blundell – 10 minute read

I am ever more convinced that words don’t actually speak. Words come easy. It’s easy to talk about compassion, generosity, sacrifice and empathy. We all love those ideas. I don’t know of anyone, faith-motivated or not, who would argue with the importance of compassion and the need for generosity and sacrificial living. While everyone would agree with those concepts, not everyone lives them. For Christ-followers, our first gift to the world is not our words (no matter how true they may be), but our actions.

#ActionsSpeak

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Who Is Worse Off?

Thoughts by Dave Blundell – 3 minute read

For the past 15 years, the people I work with have repeatedly travelled to nations that Trump disparagingly referred to this past week. We have also sent thousands of people from all over Canada to experience and serve in these nations. People often go thinking that we have so much to offer them. The perspective is that we live in such great nations and our job is to help people all over the world live like us. It’s an understandable but ignorant perspective. 

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