I have 5 Kids and my house isn’t always tidied (or ‘Shocking news for those who have no idea but give advice anyway’)

5 kidsI have 5 kids…

That means my house isn’t always tidied
It means it’s not always clean to the standard we would like
It means that some day to day stuff doesn’t get done
Having 5 kids means we have extra hands

HOWEVER

It ALSO means we are investing in 5 lives…
At an intimate levelgrowing who they are
We’re growing young leaders… who aren’t easily swayed
We’re creating adventures… and the explorers who are curious enough to want to have the adventures.
People who care about the people and community they live in.
People who walk humbly and have strong faith in God

I know what I want to invest in…
And I can always clean, tidy and vacuum tomorrow

We don’t live in muck and rubbish… but what I am saying is that when there are days that my kids need more attention… or are struggling… they get our attention first.

On tough days… our house is a mess…
And do you know what???
We are OK with that…

Because at our house… life is about people not things.


Our house is tidy OFTEN

But if you pop in and it’s not tidy… it just means we have been investing in other things!

 

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14 year old leads the way in anti-bullying

Growing up in New Zealand is pretty special.
This little nation in the South Pacific was the first in the world to Split the atom, climb Mount Everest and give women the vote.
So it is really no surprise that a 15 year old from Christchurch (in the South Island of New Zealand) decided it was time for someone to stand up against bullying.

Nakita Turner had experienced bullying herself and seeing how it affected other young people, decided someone had to do something about it.
That person was going to be her…
So Nakita went about interviewing about 180 other children and hearing stories from them about how they felt after being bullied.

So what do you do after you have a whole lot of stories that are so powerful and connected to the people you have interviewed?
Well in Nakita’s case she touched base with local band Dukes (who are known for their singles Vampires & Self-control) who mentored her.

The result is this amazing song ‘One Voice’

Draw in local talent from Dukes, hip-hop group Restoration, Massad and a local children’s choir… add all this to Nakita’s own amazing voice and you have an instant hit.

Sound wise Nakita is like Australia’s Missy Higgins… and has the lyrical sensitivity of people like Brooke Fraser

If you like this song… spread the word
…and even better if you want to add a voice to the anti-bullying message then join in the conversation at onevoice.net.nz and make sure you go to Nakita Turner’s music FaceBook page and click LIKE.

What ever way you want to do it… make sure you spread the message.

Album Review: Rend Collective ‘The Art of Celebration’

Rend Collective ‘The Art of Celebration’

I’ve had a month off from doing reviews or adding to my blog as a bit of a cleansing thing.
You know, step back and focus on the things that matter.

But now we’re back… and what a great time to be back.

I was super excited when the new album from Irish group ‘Rend Collective’ landed. ‘The Art of Celebration’ is most likely one of the most uplifting albums you will hear this year, and the year has only just begun.
Not only are you thrown into the Irish infused toe tapping Mumford-esque beats and rhythms that fans would expect from this group, but you are bombarded by truths and promises and uplifting words that speak to your soul…

It’s laced with the beautiful harmonies and melodies that come naturally to the Irish nation, and you can’t help but smile, sing along and watch as your foot taps involuntarily to the rhythms as they invade the soundscape of your soul.

Some times in the hardest moments of your life you not only need to PRAY through a problem, but PRAISE through (like Paul and Silas did in prison). ‘The Art of Celebration’ gives you  the tools to do that!
One of the focuses of this album is “God didn’t give us a spirit of seriousness… but of JOY” and you can’t help but think that these guys have nailed that brief.

Most of the album sits in the space between bluegrass rhythms and Irish tinged folksy ditties  that help us sing about ‘Joy’ and ask God to help us “Burn like a star, Set a fire in our hearts”. Then in sneaks ‘Immeasurably More’, a pop driven song that is maybe more in line with the type of tracks you would find coming out of the Passion conferences. It’s no surprise to see it was co-written by Chris Tomlin.

I would have loved to see a bit more experimentation from a group who had made a name for itself playing all sorts of random instruments. While the feel of this album works for the theme of ‘Joy’, I wonder if they could have cast their experimental net further. That will be my only real negative critique of this album… it was the experiment, the unknown, the things I HADN’T heard from a worship group that made me take interest in their sound. However, lyrically they have still got a poetic way of saying things we are starting to take for granted. A great example is the sing-a-long friendly  ‘Finally Free’

“Your mercy rains from heaven, Like confetti at a wedding, And I am celebrating, In the downpour” 

You don’t hear lyrics like that, so hearing them in a familiar setting (such as a folk song) brings it into context.

If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands… or if you’re sad, and struggling….  PRAISE, SING, CELEBRATE…

It’s great to hear such a positive album with no airs and graces, simply with good melody and good lyrics and joy at it’s very heart.
There is already too much doom and gloom and people wanting us to jump on their cause, when the joy of the Lord is our strength.
So why don’t we celebrate the fact that we have so much to celebrate?