DARLENE ZSCHECH CREDITS PSALM 91 FOR MIRACULOUS CANCER HEALING
Worship singer Darlene Zschech is behind some of the world’s most widely-sung worship songs, including: “Victor’s Crown,” “In Jesus’ Name,” “Worthy Is the Lamb,” “At the Cross” and the global anthem “Shout to the Lord.” Now, she is set to release a live DVD/CD album entitled “Here Am I Send Me,” a project that was born out of one of the darkest struggles of her life, her battle with cancer. The album opens with “You Are Great,” a powerful declaration of the greatness of God written with Martin Smith. “When I was at my sickest, Martin flew over from England to sit with us, sing songs over our church and walk with my husband and put courage in,” Darlene told Charisma News, recalling the dark days after her unexpected diagnosis of breast cancer.
“It’s Week One of treatment and you think you’re going to die, and Martin said, ‘Darls, I know you’re going to want to write songs about this season. What do you want to say?’ And I said, ‘I want to say ‘He is great!’ And so we wrote this song together,” she said. “That’s where it started … In the midst of the fire, it doesn’t change who He is.” That one song turned into an entire album and eventually, a “miraculous healing.” “The medical world doesn’t like to use the word ‘healed.’ They like to say the word ‘remission,’ she said. “But I’m believing God’s report over my life. I speak Psalm 91 over myself every day; I take my medicine and I take the Word of God, and I do my best with what I can do in the natural and trust God with those things over which I have no power.”
The main message of the alum is to worship God with your whole life, no matter how long, short, painful, or joyous it may be. “None of us know how many days we have,” says Zschech. “Whatever days I have, and I’m declaring a ripe old age, I want to live them intentionally. I want to live the love of Christ.” Integrity Music released the highly anticipated album on March 3rd. It was recorded with her team at Hope Unlimited Church on the Central Coast of NSW and features nearly a dozen songs penned by the likes of Paul Baloche, Jenn Johnson and Leeland Mooring. While Zschech may have defeated cancer, she says she still has a lot to learn on her journey towards understanding God’s love. “It’s a journey. I’m not there yet, but that’s the journey,” she said.
Problems evident in Victoria’s youth justice system will not be solved simply with new prisons and tougher sentences, and certainly not by just blaming politicians or police. We need to replace the current fragmented system, which works within timeframes that are too short to be effective, with a strategic whole-of-Government and whole-of-community approach. There is a growing cohort of young people who are dysfunctional at many levels, whose backgrounds may involve domestic and family violence, unstable housing, problems of addiction, and perhaps an inability to find positive social identity through education and durable employment. Senior police have said for years that, most of our interventions come too late, after these youths have already fallen into aspects of crime.
Last year the Chief Commissioner of Police organised a youth summit that provided a very fruitful conversation. We must build on this, particularly to examine how society can better link the preventative and responsive work of the health, education, community services, mental health, housing, police and youth justice services with the work of such non-Government agencies as Anglicare and Brotherhood of St Laurence. There are no short-term solutions. We need a long-term bipartisan approach, based on a 20 year time-line so policies and programs can assist young people, their families and communities find healthier lives.
GREENS PARTY FIGHTS IT OUT OVER DI NATALIE’S LEADERSHIP
The factional fight within the Greens is escalating into an all-out public brawl, with a senior member of Richard Di Natale’s team now openly questioning the party’s direction and prospects under his leadership. NSW senator Lee Rhiannon claims the party is at a “crossroads” and should channel the radical worker-driven policies of US presidential candidate Bernie Sanders to re-energise supporters, but her comments have drawn fire from party elder Bob Brown, who has re-entered the political fray to label her a wrecker and the “Greens version of Tony Abbott”. Other Greens figures say they are worried the party is losing votes to Labor and other minor parties under Senator Di Natale, as he attempts to steer it away from its protest roots and into the mainstream.
There are concerns too from Greens in and outside Parliament the party has become “invisible” under Senator Di Natale’s less media-driven approach. But Senator Di Natale’s supporters say the mostly NSW-based dissenters are just bitter about losing power and influence.