24 March 2007

Tunnelling in Melbourne, Lane Cove and to you!

Originally uploaded by bobmendo.
Opening the Tunnel

Down in Melbourne, only a ten-metre section of road was the scene on Friday of a horrific accident. And as a result the Burnley tunnel, with a terrifying fusion of metal and fire that shattered lives and will disrupt Melbourne's roads network for days.

Overhead, four florescent lights were blown out and burned strands of cabling hung from the roof. Underfoot, the tarmac was blistered and sticky - a sobering testimony of the fierce 1,000-degree inferno that engulfed the tunnel thoroughfare.

"That being said our priority now is to get the tunnel reopened as quickly as we can." So said a spokesperson for CityLink. There were eerie shadows in the dim lighting as they worked against a soundtrack of ear-splitting generators inside what is usually a bustling city arterial.

Soon the repairs and the repairers will be gone. The tunnel will reopen and tens of thousands of vehicles will barrel through daily, like they have done for more than six years.

Up in Sydney, on Sunday, just hours after the polls closed for conquering premier Morris Iemma, the Lane Cove Tunnel will also open. Who delayed the opening until such an auspicious day...well, it's not even a guess now is it?

The costs will be free for a month, similar to drug dealers wanting us to get hooked on the need for such a 3.6 kilometre which will cost each motorcar another $2.55 each way each day. Shocking and shameful. We don't support drug dealers and we won't get hooked, you can count on it. And like the ill-fated CrossCity Tunnel, citizens will simply bypass the extra five bucks a day after the free month and stick it to the company and the government they just elected.

But don't worry, after the company defaults its loans and goes into bankruptcy, the government will bail it out. And taxpayers will pay again. Like the 3 year project wasn't long enough to pay with major inconvenience. Ah, but Mr Iemma will enjoy being driven to another hearing on the issue.

When will the Minister for Transportation listen to reason in Sydney and make the toll roads prix fixe rather than a la carte? A person living in Pennant Hills who works in Fox Studios would end up paying for use of his vehicle each day, for his petrol as well as $4.40 for the M2, $2.55 for the 5-light saving LC Tunnel, $3 for the Harbour Tunnel, parking then on his return trip, he would pay $4.50 for the Eastern Distributor, $2.55 for the LC Tunnel again and another $4.40 for the M2. All up, tolls alone will cost him an obscene $21.40. No one, and that means frequent users especially, should have to pay more than $13 each day for use of any of Sydney's toll roads. This prix fixe charge would ENCOURAGE rather than discourage people from using the roads and get the cars onto the expressways. Isn't that what government wanted?

Thinking about tunneling brings up a lot of ideas. God actually tunnels to us each day, digging through the things we put up to block Him away from us. And about 2,000 years ago God tunneled through the darkness of humanity, sending His only Son to us, to become like one of us and to die for us. Then God did something even greater...if that's possible!

Y'shua (some call him "Jesus") rose from the dead. And He lives to this day, and offers to everyone eternal life. It comes with a price, but you cannot and may not pay it. He paid it all for us in repairing our relationship with the Lord. All you have to do is to believe and enjoy being driven from darkness to light. That's a great deal. And soon the repairer will return and welcome us to Eternity with Him.

Want to go for a free ride? Not for a month, but for all time.

19 March 2007

Colma Cemetery

Originally uploaded by bobmendo.
Death and dying...true reality. One day it will bite us all. And what then?

Yesterday was the anniversary of my father's birth. He died 2 years ago. And there is not a week that goes by that I do not think about him. His wild antics, his silly jokes, his desire to make other people happy.

We had good times, not enough times, deep times and real hurtful times. But all together it was a good ride. I enjoyed my dad. He embarassed me at times and I was very proud of him at times. He drove to St Louis to see me in plays in uni days after having worked all week in and out of cars some 400 miles away. He loved Mom and that was top drawer.

But like everyone my dad passed away. And you will too. And you will end up with a gravestone like all these folks in Colma South of San Francisco.

What if they say of you that you are like this photo in Texas from a couple weeks ago

Grave Marker. Will you hope for a better signage?

What will you do with life after death? Will there be life after death for you? As Jewish believers in Jesus, we hold firm to the conviction that God has forgiven us and that we have passed from death to life. We await no further judgment. We are forgiven and enter into the presence of the Almighty.

What a great day that will be! And it can be great for you as well.


This is a test post from flickr, a fancy photo sharing thing.

08 March 2007

In like a lion

March was always the month I enjoyed in my youth in Kansas City. It heralded Springtime. During March, my grandmother, sister, father and cousin were born. And it seemed as though the earth did as well. The school saying in the US was 'March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb.'

Winter was almost over, school's ending was in sight, my life was taking a turn.

And maybe that's happening to you in the North as well. I've been in Texas and San Francisco this month and will return to Sydney on Sunday night. So I've been thinking more about March as 'in like a lion.' And 'out like a lamb.'

Lion and lamb. Sounds so biblical.
Listen to these uses of the phrase 'Like a lion'
For instance, in Job 10.16 ‘And should my head be lifted up, Thou wouldst hunt me like a lion; And again Thou wouldst show Thy power against me.
Psa. 7.2 Lest he tear my soul like a lion, Dragging me away, while there is none to deliver.
Psa. 17.12 He is like a lion that is eager to tear, And as a young lion lurking in hiding places.
Is. 38.13 “I composed my soul until morning. Like a lion — so He breaks all my bones, From day until night Thou dost make an end of me.
Jer. 12.8 “My inheritance has become to Me Like a lion in the forest; She has roared against Me; Therefore I have come to hate her.
Jer. 49.19 “Behold, one will come up like a lion from the thickets of the Jordan against a perennially watered pasture; for in an instant I shall make him run away from it, and whoever is chosen I shall appoint over it. For who is like Me, and who will summon Me into court? And who then is the shepherd who can stand against Me?”
Jer. 50.44 “Behold, one will come up like a lion from the thicket of the Jordan to a perennially watered pasture; for in an instant I shall make them run away from it, and whoever is chosen I shall appoint over it. For who is like Me, and who will summon Me into court? And who then is the shepherd who can stand before Me?”
Lam. 3.10 He is to me like a bear lying in wait, Like a lion in secret places.
Dan. 7.4 “The first was like a lion and had the wings of an eagle. I kept looking until its wings were plucked, and it was lifted up from the ground and made to stand on two feet like a man; a human mind also was given to it.
Hos. 5.14 For I will be like a lion to Ephraim, And like a young lion to the house of Judah. I, even I, will tear to pieces and go away, I will carry away, and there will be none to deliver.
Hos. 11.10 They will walk after the LORD, He will roar like a lion; Indeed He will roar, And His sons will come trembling from the west.
Hos. 13.7 So I will be like a lion to them; Like a leopard I will lie in wait by the wayside.
Mic. 5.8 And the remnant of Jacob Will be among the nations, Among many peoples Like a lion among the beasts of the forest, Like a young lion among flocks of sheep, Which, if he passes through, Tramples down and tears, And there is none to rescue.
Rev. 4.7 And the first creature was like a lion, and the second creature like a calf, and the third creature had a face like that of a man, and the fourth creature was like a flying eagle.

wow, what a list of creatures. leopards and eagles and bears, oh my!

Of course, Jesus is called the "Lion of the Tribe of Judah" and he is also the "Lamb led to slaughter" and the "Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world."

God is so kind to give us images to understand and to learn so we might be his kind of people.

And that will be the end of a spiritual winter, and your life will take a real turn.