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.

  • The Federal Budget - what's in it for the poor?

    Posted by Tim

    7 May, 2012

    As Australia focuses on the Federal Budget and how our hip pockets will be affected, Christians are called to view it in another way. Jim Wallis of the Sojourners community in the US has often referred to federal budgets as moral documents. He recently pointed out that budgets reveal our nation’s priorities – who is important and who is not, and what is important and what is not. One very important priority for our nation is that of our overseas aid and development expenditure. As I have said elsewhere recently, most Australians don’t realise how little our Government gives in this area. Our current level of overseas aid sits at just 35 cents per every $100 of GNI. As Christians we are called to view the Federal Budget in terms of how God wants us to use our nation’s finances. It is about caring for the ‘least of these’ as described by Jesus in Matthew 25. This parable near the end of Matthew’s Gospel is a call to the nations; it seems to be talking about how the nations have treated the least of these. It is a call… 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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  • Love Jesus and Love [Pure] Religion! (A response to a YouTube phenomenon)

    Posted by Matt

    10 April, 2012

    I’m unashamedly proud of my local church. We have an incredible impact on our local community, from cell groups that gather people together to share meals and fellowship in homes, to our op-shop-come-food-bank that gives real help to our marginalised neighbours, and our RESPONSE program connecting new refugee arrivals from the Congo with an Australian partner family. I’m also passionate about the global Church’s impact on the world’s most stubborn issues; things like racism, global poverty, human trafficking. When the Church unites, she is an unstoppable force for good that no one can stop. That’s why when I saw Jefferson Bethke’s YouTube sensation Why I Hate Religion but Love Jesus, something didn’t sit right. Are you one of the 20 million people who have watched the compelling video posted by 22-year-old Jefferson? What did you think? How did it leave you feeling? Pumped up? Justified in your own discontent with “the Church”? More in love with Jesus? Or perhaps confused ... wondering if you should hate… read more

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  • In the Delhi of night

    Posted by Nils

    6 March, 2012

    Leaving India at two o’clock in the morning to catch our flight to our next destination, I stopped to reflect on the past previous ten days in this fascinating country. What had we learned? What could we take away? India is like no place on Earth. Of course that could be said of any place, but there is something about this country that I haven't found in other countries I've visited. For instance, Western countries have a vaguely similar way of life to each other. They are capitalistic, democratic, and predicated on the notion of economic growth. India however is different. It is a mixture of ancient and modern; it is founded on deep religious principles yet is being intruded upon by the forces of Western secularism. As an Indian colleague of mine pointed out, there is a tension in the country between a fervent desire to be like or imitate the West, and at the same time a disdain for the West and its influences. Perhaps it is this last reason which explains why India is - currently at least - able to maintain this tension. I wonder how long it can… read more

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