Well, for Australia tomorrow is it. The time we’ve been waiting for. A federal election.

And it’s been reminding me of the last federal election - exactly three years ago, and long before Covid changed everything. It was called “The Climate Change Election” - and yet it returned to power a government with terrible climate credentials.

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Right now, the world is reeling from the Russian invasion of Ukraine. And some Christadelphians are excited about it. Just like so many times before. Prophecy is unfolding before their eyes. The end times are here, and the return of Jesus is just around the corner. It’s the fulfilment of God’s great plan, and anyone who happens to be hurt by it is just unfortunate collateral damage.

But that’s not really what I want to talk about. I want to talk about prophecy that really does come true.

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In 2020, Covid-induced work from home allowed me to see more sunsets than usual. In 2021, I added some sunrises to the mix (it turns out that, like sunsets, sunrises can be slightly addictive - though they’re still too early in the morning). So what better way to mark the transition to 2022 than watching the final sunset of 2021, and the first sunrise of 2022?

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“The world envies us”. Ever heard these words?

Here in Australia they’ve often been rolled out by politicians to excuse failures: Yes, we might not have got it perfect, but we’re still doing better than the rest of the world. And there’s some truth to the words, but there’s also a lot of complacency - past success is not a guarantee of future success, and we can’t expect Australia to be immune to what other countries are experiencing.

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Ten years ago today, I was in India, in the final week of my final mission trip. It was my fifth trip, and my longest. I haven’t returned to the country since, though maybe one day I’ll go there as a tourist. Now, looking back on it, the whole endeavour just feels odd.

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Five years ago today, I wrote a welcome post for this blog. The anniversary has crept up on me, but it still feels important to mark it somehow. It was something new that I wanted to try, but I didn’t (and couldn’t) know what running this blog would come to mean to me. It’s been an interesting ride, and sometimes a frustrating one, but I wouldn’t be without it.

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Last year, Covid hit and made 2020 an exceptionally unpopular year. At that time, I feel like we heard a lot about “returning to normal”. Maybe this would happen later in 2020, maybe it was for 2021, but it was going to be sometime in the not-too-distant future. In the meantime, Australia was (largely) CovidFree and we were told the world envied our freedoms.

Fast forward to mid-2021, there were major outbreaks in Sydney and Melbourne, over half the population of Australia were in lockdown, and the message had changed to “living with Covid”. Other countries were managing it (which perhaps gave them a break from envying us), so why couldn’t we? Vaccination targets were established for re-opening, the vaccination program was sped up, and both NSW and Victoria are now officially “living with Covid”.

The politicians have been out in full force for months selling it. But what exactly is being sold?

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This time last week, we were still in lockdown, with our curfew continuing to apply right up to midnight. We’d been told that we weren’t going to have a UK-style “Freedom Day” where all restrictions were ended at once - and we didn’t. But somehow the “70% fully vaccinated” target morphed into a moral obligation to the people of Victoria, and so we got a “Freedom Midnight”.

It was a big deal. A time to celebrate. It was supposed to be the end of lockdown. Not just the end of the lockdown Melbourne had been in since August, but the end of lockdowns in Victoria forever.

So how better to celebrate it than a moonlit walk?

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