Micah Challenge Australia Blog

 

The Micah Challenge blog is a space for discussion and debate about the issues of global poverty, faith, advocacy and justice and the Millennium Development Goals. This blog aims to provoke thought and challenge you to learn more about the issues discussed. We welcome your comments.

Micah Challenge is a global campaign of Christians speaking out against poverty and injustice. Click here to visit the Micah Challenge website.

  • Looking Forward With Hope

    Posted by John

    21 May, 2012

    This week's 'Looking Forward' series aims to wrap up our reflections on the Federal Budget, and plant the seeds for what comes next as we continue with perseverance, hope, passion and courage to change the hearts and minds of our nation's leaders. _______________________________________________________ It’s politics 101. You manage the public’s expectations, making them think something is going to be really bad, then you deliver something that is a little better than what people expected. I confess....I fell victim to it. I was overseas when I first heard that the government had delayed their commitment to reaching 0.5% GNI to aid by just one year. I had received word that the budget could be bad, so I thought “that’s not too bad. It could have been worse" Politics 101 - they got me. Since returning home, the more I sit with their decision, the angrier I get about it. Why Mr Swan? Why Prime Minister? At the same time I am asking myself why? I’m a pretty relaxed person, so why am I so angry? Is it broken… read more

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  • I'm tired of saving the world! (Some perspective please)

    Posted by John

    17 April, 2012

    It's a new year. I sit down around a table with a wide-eyed and passionate new batch of Micah Challenge interns. After some initial introductions, the first thing we do is to spend some time looking at the story of the prophet Micah. While most people know the famous challenge Micah issued to God’s people – to act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God (Micah 6:8) – not many people actually know much about who Micah was. At the time Micah lived, the Israelites were under threat of invasion from the largest empire of the day – the Assyrians. The external pressure of potential exile was coupled with gross injustice within the nation – idolatry, oppression of the poor and misuse of power. Micah’s message into this context was not a popular one, but this 8th Century BC prophet was a courageous man who spoke God’s words to the people of Israel at a time when they weren’t particularly interested in listening. I make sure to spend some time in the story of Micah at the beginning of every year because it gives… read more

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  • What will Mr. Rudd's resignation mean for the poor?

    Posted by John

    23 February, 2012

    My answer to the question posed in the title of this blog is simple – I don’t know yet. The obvious reaction to Mr. Rudd’s announcement for us here in the Micah Challenge office is to get focused on what this will mean for the campaign. How should we respond? What strategies should we develop to ensure Australia’s commitments to the world's poorest people are maintained and strengthened? I was in that space this morning when I read something from a Pastor friend of mine who said this on Facebook: ‘"@twitter reveals the dysfunctional heart of Aussies in response to the crisis. A better response? Pray with me 4 @JuliaGillard & @KRuddMP" It was a timely reminder for me. The focus for Micah Challenge this week has been our PrayACT campaign. We have been encouraging people to focus on prayer as the primary action we should take as Christian advocates for the poor. No doubt we will also spend time over the coming days, weeks and months thinking about how we can best use our voices on behalf of the poor in this… read more

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  • Too cynical not to pray

    Posted by John

    16 February, 2012

    Are you like me? Do you get so wrapped up in everything on the to-do list that you forget to pray? But is it really forgetfulness? If I'm honest, if I really believed in the power and importance of prayer (and I do!), surely I wouldn't forget to do it. There must be other reasons why prayer slips down the agenda of importance. About 15 years ago, a mega-church pastor from the US, Bill Hybels, released a book entitled Too Busy not to Pray - the implication in the title is obviously that the busyness of life is a reason to spend more time in prayer rather than less. I wonder whether there is need for a second book in the series called 'Too cynical not to pray'? There is a potential drift into cynicism that happens when people of faith get seriously engaged in the issues of our world. I know from experience that it is hard to be persistent in prayer when you are daily confronted with the reality of brokenness in our world. I long for God to intervene in that brokenness, but I don't always seem to get what I long for. Consistent injustice and evil… read more

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