The Game

*GOT Spoiler Alert

Luke 22:47-48 Judas, one of the Twelve, was leading them. He approached Jesus to kiss him,but Jesus asked him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?

In the series Game of Thrones, Ned Stark, like Jesus sacrifices his life while trying to achieve the greater good for the people of the seven kingdoms.  What instigated the demise of Ned was that he had too much faith in the people he trusted, Lord Varys and Lord Baelish which contributed to his downfall. Similarly, for Jesus it was one of the chosen twelve, Judas that assisted in the Pharisees quest to have Jesus sentenced to death. So, what were the motives that led to the betrayal?

I would argue in Varys and Lord Baelish’s case it was to strengthen their own power so their influence on the decision-making process of the political and economic policies in the seven kingdoms would lead to their preferred outcome. Contrastingly, for Judas he perceived that the goal of Jesus’s mission conflicted with his own purposes which led to his betrayal. The question is did Judas, Varys and Lord Baelish’s actions enable them to achieve their own objectives? However, ultimately, they were destroyed by the leaders who they went to for their betrayals.

For wicked men are found among My people, They, watch like hunters lying in wait; They set a trap, They, catch men.  Jeremiah 5:26

I sometimes wonder if people walk into a situation that may contain many pitfalls, i.e. high risk, high rewards. For Jesus it was going to Jerusalem knowing that the hierarchy of the Jewish faith and the Roman rulers perceived that he was threat to their own power, while the crowd saw Jesus as the one who could overthrow the power base. However, in this instance, Jesus was writing his own narrative where he would challenge the Jewish and Roman Leaders on how their rule differed from his own mission which was to proclaim God’s Kingdom. Additionally, the crowd turned on him when it became abundantly clear that his life’s end goal was not to overthrow the Jewish and Roman rulers but to sacrifice his life so that everyone would have the opportunity to gain eternal life.

Conversely, with Rob Stark who hears of death of his father, Ned and immediately assembles the Northern armies to oppose the rulers and the armies who ordered Ned’s death.  Instantaneously, Rob Stark is enacting force creating a conflict between selfish ambition and what he perceives to be for the Greater Good.  The Northern Armies massage his ego with cries of “King of North”, and encourage his actions to achieve their goals. Nevertheless, one of the Commanders of the army, Rob Bolton, defected to the enemy and was promised the position of Warden of the North. It culminated in what the Stark’s believed to be a Wedding Celebration that would result in a strong alliance with the Frey’s instead it was a trap that resulted in the death of Rob Stark and his mother. Hence, Rob Stark’s narrative of becoming King of North was reliant on the allegiance of the Commanders of the North endorsing him as leader and in Rob Bolton’s case that loyalty could be brought for him to defect to the enemy to enhance his own power and position. Thus, Rob Bolton by setting the trap demonstrated his lust for power hardly a template for future job security.

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.”

 Jesus’ unconditional love for the marginalised sets him apart from other leaders as he was all about inspiring them to change their lives which in turn saw them in many cases go on to change other peoples’ lives, e.g. Zacchaeus who vowed to give half his possessions to the poor and pay back 4 times the amount to those who he cheated in tax payments. Therefore, for Jesus it was about empowering people to change through his teachings, miracles and his ability to exhibit his love for people that he hoped would inspire them not only to change heir own circumstances but for others as well. Hence, creating a better world.

Contrastingly, with Jon Snow, who has the story reaches its conclusion wants what is best for the Seven Kingdoms not what is best for Jon Snow. He is a person who is loved by the people and his peers but is reluctant to be King not because of the responsibility but it is role that others would not stop at any lengths to dethrone him. I believe that Jon doesn’t want to be preoccupied with making decisions about maintaining his own power but rather how can we best feed and clothe the people of the Seven Kingdoms just not for the present but for the future.

Hence, Jon Snow wants to leave a legacy that can be read about in books for thousands of years to come. Just like Jesus whose gospel teachings have continued throughout Christian Churches. However, for Jon the question is what sacrifices will he have to make for this to happen?

My Mum


 In Proverbs 31:10 “A Mother of noble character who is worth far more than rubies.”When I reflect about who my mother is, I think this verse about my mum is very apt. She would always put others before herself both at home and in her workplace. Her behaviour was always beyond reproach never ever getting flustered by any challenges she faced but always patient and tolerant in how she dealt with the issue. Furthermore, was how she was held in such high esteem by her work colleagues who always praised her work ethic as well as positive relationships with all members of staff.

 “She provides for her family from her earnings she considers what she buys.” 7 She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. Proverbs 31:16 & 17.My mum always spent on my sisters and I before she spent money on herself. We were fashionably clothed and went to private schools which gave us the best opportunity for our future careers. Her meals were appetising and when she didn’t cook, we were lucky enough to enjoy takeaway. She always amazed me how she could work full time, cook a meal, nurse us when we were sick and get all the housework done. What it showed to me was her great discipline and selflessness as she had very little time to pursue her interests.

She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.Proverbs 31:16 & 17. My mum has a quiet but strong nature, where nothing ever phases her which meant when she speaks, I listen. Her favourite sayings are “a still tongue is a wise ahead” and “don’t walk into situations like a bull at a gate.” They have been two edicts that I have I have tried to live by throughout my life. She introduced me to British comedy and her laughter would echo around the lounge room when she was watching one of her favourite shows. It was so infectious that I would sit down and watch them with her. Occasionally, I reminisce and view the odd episode or two of her favourite series.

 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Proverbs 31:30 The most striking feature about my Mum today is her unwavering faith. She prays and reads her bible everyday with the knowledge that she is loved by God, her family and friends. Always fairly reluctant to talk about herself I love how she is now sharing stories with me about growing up in the South Australian Country town of Jamestown, riding a horse called Jack and playing with a black Kelpie called Nigel. Later on, when she met Dad, she would ride on the back of his motor bike I would have liked to have seen that. I really look forward to reading her memoirs and finding out things that I didn’t know about her before. To me mum will always be a miracle in her lifetime.