Lucky Faith












It can be a fine line between faith and superstition…

And we may not even realise that at times we cross over. How often have you heard it said (usually when someone is applying for a job or similar) ‘If God is in it then it will all work out – if not then its not his will’?

Really? Is that how it works? Sounds quite Islamic in tone, but for many this is how following Jesus can look.

Or when you miss out on buying that house you placed on offer on?… Then clearly it wasn’t ‘God’s will’ right? (Or maybe you just didn’t offer enough)

What about when you sense God leading you in a direction and you take the path and it doesn’t go well? Surely if God’s leading and we are following then all will go nicely?…

Yeah… Cause that’s how it worked out for Jesus’ first disciples…

There’s, the guy who tithes religiously and believes God will bless him with wealth – so when he doesn’t tithe he sees his lagging business as evidence of God’s judgement on him.

Why do we draw these conclusions? I imagine some of it is because we want to be part of a world where the divine is involved and that’s a good thing, but I imagine some of it is because we need an explanation for life’s twists and turns. We need a way of predicting outcomes in our world. We need security…

The problem comes in that when we develop either a fatalistic faith or a ’cause & effect’ faith we eliminate mystery from the equation and we veer dangerously into the superstitious. And security is funnily enough generally at odds with faith. That’s not to mention that we have to pin some stuff on God as ‘his will’, when in reality it may be at odds with all he hopes for.

Reality is we live in a screwed up world, so we simply can’t draw these simplistic conclusions no matter how they ease our troubled minds.

Sometimes you didn’t get the job because you’re a dick…

Sometimes your business can boom and you can give nothing away…

Sometimes … fill in your own story here… but let’s leave behind the childish equations that allow us to either manipulate God or explain him and lets accept that faith must go hand in hand with mystery and that’s a good thing


Car Insurance Tip


So I bought a car… Ok nothing new in that… I do it often

But I needed to insure it so I called the mob I am with (GIO) and their first quote to me was $1600.00. Really?…

I’m not 17, I haven’t been in jail… I have had one at fault claim in the last 5 years… Even though I paid for a no claim bonus protection it only applies to the ‘current’ policy, so if I take a ‘new policy’ I lose that advantage. That said if I switched the Cruiser policy to the Colorado it was still $1100.00 which seems like a lot.

A quick ‘compare the market’ check showed $900.00 as about average, which still seemed a bit high to me.

I went back to Progressive Online who we have our other car with and they came up with $825.00 so I bought it. Suddenly it seemed cheap!


Then I got to pick the car up early and I needed to move the policy start date forward by one day. How hard can that be?

With Progressive you can’t talk to a real live human so I had to do the email thing.

Eventually my advice was to cancel the new policy and ‘add’ the new car to the existing policy. I didn’t know you could do that and I anticipated a nutso service charge (skeptic that I am).

Because we needed it sorted asap I nearly baled on them altogether, but just in time I found the necessary info, got the emails sorted and discovered that by ‘adding’ it to my other policy the premium was now $383.00

The policy is the same as GIO’s, but you just can’t speak to a human. I think I’m willing to take the gamble for the saving.

As for you ‘YOUI’… after 30 minutes on the phone of never ending questions… $1800 was never going to be considered a fair price. And you even sent me the quote via email just in case I changed my mind.

Possibly not…

So – I learnt something there and it might be useful to someone else. I suggested Progressive may want to let us in on the idea of ‘adding’ a car as cheaper as I instantly saved over $400 as a result.

So that’ll pay for some new car accessories!

How Was Your Experience With Us?

Up to now pretty good…

It seems the latest trend in business is to send people online feedback questionnaires asking ‘how did we go?’

I dunno how many of these I have received in the last few months and no doubt you have too. I get that people want to improve their service, but chances are the only respondents will be those who had a very bad experience because they now have a place to vent.

The problem is that those of us who had a ‘normal to good’ experience are now a bit miffed at yet another email to process and discard. So in reality you may have just pissed off your satisfied clients…

There is a place for feedback in business, but if every time I call a tech helpline I am going to get bombarded with ‘were you happy?/please rate us’ messages (I’m looking at you Exetel…) then I am going to get a little grumpy soon, especially as I have already had to sit on hold and call you several times… And I may even seek another service…

Maybe there’s a better way…


But Because You Say So…

I woke this morning to a new year and began reading in Luke 5 where Jesus calls the first of his disciples and as I read I couldn’t help but notice his audacity in telling seasoned fishermen, who knew their stuff, but had caught nothing all night, to push their boats back out and give it another try.

Yeah right…

Simon frames their response well, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”

What Jesus asks seems like foolishness to them. It flies in the face of their many years of experience and does not make any sense. Better to just go home and call it day, maybe wait for the tide to change and come back tomorrow.

Simon kinda makes that point, but then goes on to say ‘but because you say so we’ll give it another crack’. I’m not sure of Simon’s tone in that conversation – was he humouring Jesus? Deferring to him but inwardly believing he was wasting his time?

Clearly they weren’t.

But I’m less interested in the outcome of ‘so many fish that their boats nearly sank’, than I am in Simon’s recognition that Jesus is the one who calls the shots and our role is to listen – to be in a place where we can hear him – and then respond in line with what he asks. The reality is that sometimes Jesus asks us to put the boats back in the water and the result is not a huge haul. But what does matter is that we trust his voice – whether it makes good sense or not.

Its the question I find myself asking men all the time now, ‘What is God saying to you? What is he asking you to do?’ Because if you know that then your opinion, no matter how informed, is not an issue.

Sometimes he will ask you to fall in line with good sense, sometimes he will take you down a back road for no apparent reason. But if we genuinely believe that there is a God who interacts with us – who seeks to guide – then we do well to ask him what he wants of us.

Too much of our thinking is shaped by contemporary wisdom – by what is smart, expedient, financially prudent and so on, but these things aren’t always Jesus concerns.

I’ve been challenged numerous times lately to do things ‘because he says so’ rather than because they are in the best interests of what my culture tells me is important and I imagine its an idea we need to keep continually returning to if we are to live a life of faith rather than a life simply reliant on our own smarts.