Wednesday, 31 October 2007

Impressionable Impreza

I'm currently looking to replace my car, the Falcon is getting old, and I'm starting to have too many problems (none very little) which are just costing me more and more money.

I'm also looking at something a little smaller. When I bought the Falcon I was using it to carry 5 people on youth group outings and camps, the extra space was really helpfull when you're going away for a few days and have 4 other people and their luggage with you. These days I'm finding 90% of the time it's just me in the car, which seems a bit of a waste being such a large car.

The only problem has been that I love my XR6, but I am coming to terms with the notion of getting rid of it.

I'd been browsing looking at later model Subaru Imprezas when I found a 2007 model with 133kms. Interested I looked into it a little more and found out the car is brand new, in Ipswich (amazing conincidence), and being run out because the new model Impreza has now arrived in show rooms.

2007 Impreza on CarPoint
I wasn't planning on buying a brand new car, but the price on this particular Impreza was amazing, so organised to go look at it, however the price was too amazing it seems, the car had sold by the time I arrived yesterday afternoon.

The salesman was really good though, he showed me the brand new model, let me take it for a test drive, did an evaluation on the Falcon and just gave me my option. He didn't pressure me on anything, knowing I hadn't particulary been planning to buy new, he even tried to find some used cars I might like but they had nothing.

I think they'd do me a really good deal on that new Impreza, but I don't think I can justify buying a brand new car, even at that price.

New Model
How's the new model Impreza drive though? Amazing! I really really liked it, the handling and grip is insane, but it doesn't quite have that exciting rigid feel my XR6 has. It's a tempting idea to own a car that's only been release for under a month, drives so well, and has one of the highest safety results in Australia.

But it's more than I had intended to spend, so I must fight the consumer within me that says spending a little more is ok...

Tuesday, 30 October 2007

Down In Flames.

I've never liked Acer computers, we have about 200 Acer workstations that were bought back in 2004. They're coming to the end of their working life with us, but they've always had hardware problems.

I sort of took it to a new level today though. Had an Acer workstation which wouldn't power on, we have a bank of spare power supplies, so I swapped them over and turned the PC on. Next thing I know one of the resistors on the mainboard (motherboard) melts, and lights up the plastic casing, which then lights up the plastic and silicon wires around it. It looked like a gigantic candle - which gave me the idea to pull the power and simply blow the flame out (lucky I've had 25 years to practise blowing candles out).

It created enough smoke to make the fire alarms beep, thankfully though there was not enough to set off a full evacuation. However everyone in my section learnt that burning computer components don't smell so good.

Sort of made the day a little more entertaining though.

Monday, 29 October 2007

An Old Drawcard.

Was just checking some stats on my blog. It seems one of the biggest link in pages for me is a certain post I made in May this year. It's one I really thought out, from a seeming random observation one day at lunch. I just read through it again and what I said still resonates deep within me.

So I thought I might post it again and see what other conversation it can develop, there were a few good comments on the original post so you can check that out here.

Authentic Christianity – Like Chinese Food.
I was eating some Chinese food for lunch the other day, one of the dishes that was being served was ‘Crunchy Chicken’. I didn’t buy it (choosing a freshly cooked soup over the pre heated dishes out the front), but noticed that the majority of customers were ordering the Crunchy Chicken.

I wonder exactly what ties Crunchy Chicken has to authentic Chinese dishes, and if the dish is more produced for an Australian audience, and that’s created the high demand.

I like Chinese food, but the distinct thing I remember when I went to China back in 1995 was how different the food is over there. My favourite dish was Gou lao ruo, which was pork pieces wok tossed in a sweet sticky BBQ sauce with some sour (or more savoury) herbs and chilli flavours… (Gou lao ruo translates into English as sweet and sour pork). Now if you order Sweet and Sour Pork in most Chinese Restaurants in Australia you get deep fried pork balls with a sweet and sour sauce, which is runny, not BBQ flavoured and has pineapple in it.

There was no pineapple in the authentic Chinese dish I loved in Beijing!

See most Chinese Restaurants in Oz cater for an Australian customer base. They also have access to different cooking styles. In both cases this has altered the traditional style of the food to be modelled on an Australian ‘flavoured’ dish. The desire to be a successful restaurant usually overpowers the traditional cooking styles so that they compromise on the authenticity to give the consumer what they want. Over a long period of years we all in Australia have come to accept this is Chinese food, many restaurants advertise ‘authentic’ dishes, but are serving the Australianised version of authentic Chinese food.

To the point where we now expect Sweet and Sour Pork to be a serve of deep fried pork balls with a runny sauce (with pineapples) to pour over them. In some cases places that don’t serve it this way may be questioned as to why they’ve changed…

Are we a bit like that in the Church? To appeal to the society around us, or because of some of the ‘access to different styles and mediums’ we have at our disposal, do we change slightly from our authentic beliefs? Has this been going on so long that now the general population just assumes that’s what authentic Christianity is? Has it been going on so long that we believe that’s what authentic Christianity is? Do we compromise on our authenticity to give the 'customer' what they want?

Has the culture of music, entertainment, risky thrills, wanting to fit in, wanting to be uncontroversial, consumerism and materialism added ‘pineapple’ to our faith? Does this compromise the core biblical basis the church was founded on?

Like the Crunchy Chicken that was the obvious favourite for most of Brisbane’s CBD, are people outside the Church drawn into churches that offer a culturally acclimatised experience? Is that because they haven’t seen how good the authentic stuff is?

All I know is that if I had the choice of pork balls or traditional Gou lao ruo I’d be going the original and the best! I just pray that I’m also seeking an authentic faith of the same kind.

Update on Jeff

Received this email this morning, please keep praying.

Dear Folks,
Many of you will have heard this news via the grapevine or you're on othere-mail lists. However I am going through Jeff's list now to make sure nobody misses out.
The sad news is that Jeff's illness has developed into an acute arthritic condition. After 10 days in the Hovd hospital the Dr referred him to Ulaanbaatar (UB) for tests and treatment. After two days of these the Drs strongly advised him to come home toAustralia in the hopes that avoiding the Mongolian winter would help the condition not tobecome chronic.
Jeff had really resisted the thought of coming home till then, but hasagreed it is good idea and he will be arriving 10.30am tomorrow Monday 29th (not Tuesdayas we were at first told). He is coming with just hand luggage and a return ticket, so youcan see he really believes he'll soon be well enough to return.
Please pray for a comfortable trip. He is coming as a wheel chair passengeras he can't walk many meters without becoming sore and exhausted. Many of his joints areaffected, so the long trip won't be easy. I'm praying that he'll be able to have his sore leg elevated somehow, and the long trip won't affect him adversely.
Thanks for your prayer support. I'm sure it's not easy for Jeff to suddenlyhave his plans and life changed. But we are trusting for God to be glorified in it all, andthat healing will come before long.
Blessings on you all,
Alan and Anne King

Sunday, 28 October 2007

Gold Coast Indy 2007

Here are some of the photographs I took over Indy Weekend.

[Will Power - Second Pole Position in 2 years, and second time he crashed out early too!]

[Aussie Racing Cars - look like great fun]

Saturday, 27 October 2007


It's been great to relax and just have some time off.

Many things to write about over the week, but I just decided to have a bit of a break from blogging too. Not think about too much and just take the week nice and slow.

Well it didn't start off slow with 4 days of Indy. Man there were some serious skills on display by the drivers to navigate that amazing circuit between the high rises of Surfer's Paradise. However you did have to keep you eyes off the balconies of those same high rises, and the general behaviour of people during the weekend was a pretty stark reminder of exactly what's going on in the world today... sometimes we forget within our Church walls.

Got home from the coast on Monday, spent Tuesday doing nothing productive at all - bit of a waste of a day actually... then Wednesday I went down the coast again, another swim and then had morning tea with a friend before dropping in to see my mates at 107.3 Life FM. Thursday I mowed the lawns and did some stuff around the house before driving up to Toowoomba to have dinner with another friend.

Unfortunately as I was leaving home Thursday the electric window in the Falcon broke - I heard a snap, and then the window just slowly slid down. Not being able to lock the car properly I jumped in Mum's and drove to Toowoomba after organising to take the car into Bryan Byrt Ford on Friday.

So Friday took the car to Bryan Byrt's, which I usually do and then get dropped off at work. Well this time I went into the Brissie CBD just thinking it would be a few hours. I was having a service done as well, and it seems the same problem has occurred as the last time I had the car in there. Suspension issues - Bryan Byrts had made me buy new tyres after they told me the suspension was fixed, now those new front tyres after only 8000kms have been worn through again!!! The inside edge of the tyres are totally bald, for that to happen after just 3 months is pretty incredible. The people at Bryan Byrt's have no idea what's wrong and the car's gotta go back in on Monday. I'm going to be hitting them up for a new set of front tyres though, since they got me to buy them after fixing it last time! Either way, I think it's still gonna be expensive!

Today I went back down to Burleigh with my Bro for a swim in the surf and lunch by the beach. Good times.

Well expect some Indy photos, and some other ones I've taken during my time off. Maybe a few more random blogs from thoughts I've had in all the spare time this week.

Wednesday, 17 October 2007

Gold Coast - and Indy

Well 6 days on the Gold Coast sounds fantastic, packing up Dad's caravan and heading to Tallebudgera right on the creek and near the beach.

Though I'm hoping to get to the beach today, it's not the reason for our holiday... the Gold Coast Indy Carnival is this week, and Dad's there as one of the official chaplains, I'm just lucky enough to have a free 4 day pass!

So I've packed my Ford shirts, grabbed my Willowbank drags shirt to show off some local pride and I'm ready to hit the track. Plus I've got my camera so hopefully I'll have some nice shots to post next week.

Have a good one...

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

The Day Before....

Isn't it funny how on your last day before going on holidays you have to work extra hard, and stay an hour late to get stuff finished off and write a huge essay explaining the things you've been doing the last two weeks because the place has a good chance of falling apart because you aren't going to be there for a week and a half.

Woah what a long sentence.... big breath....


Monday, 15 October 2007

New Blog Layout

Holy dooly!!! Check out the new look!

I thought it was about time I took advantage of all the new features of Blogger Beta (which is now just the Google Blogger layouts). It was a little more indepth than I thought it would be, and once I started there was no stopping until it was up to my standards (which took a while).

If you want to know why the car up the top, well simply it's cause I just love 1969 Dodge Chargers... and that's just a really cool photo of one. I'm all about putting forth all the stuff God's put in my life, and the passion he's given me for cars has allowed me to move into ministries like sports chaplaincy, so I think putting my favourite car up there is in a small way giving God glory for the passions he's given me.

Well it's a much cleaner layout, so hope you like... let me know your thoughts.

Please pray for a friend in Mongolia

A letter from Jeff's parents here in Brisbane. Please uphold Jeff in your prayers

Dear Folk,
For some of you this will be an update on Jeff and for some of you it will be first time news.
Jeff was admitted to a private hospital in Hovd, Mongolia early last week with severe back pain. He could hardly walk and nor could he stay lying down for long. The pain started after he got extremely cold taking someone home from a wedding in the early hours of the morning on his motor bike, and gradually worsened despite medical care.

It seems to be a pinched nerve or some such as he is not sick and has no fever. We have been assured that he is in good care there. The Dr has a good reputation and the clinic is well run. His Field Leader had visited there recently and was impressed with it. Jeff himself was very concerned before admission, but it is evident now that he is relaxed about the care there.

Until yesterday he was not noticing any improvement except after injections for pain. But yesterday a neurologist from the capital had a clinic there and she ordered physio and acupuncture and new medication, and he was feeling slightly better last night, certainly in better spirits. They can’t xray as the machine has broken down.

Thanks to all who are praying. We are trusting for God’s glory to be manifest in this and that the devil’s wiles will be thwarted.

Jeff has a Mongolian couple, man and wife, in the room with him. They are from way out in the country and have never been anywhere past Hovd. They are enjoying Jeff’s MP3 player etc and marveling at modern technology. The clinic provides just one meal a day and relatives and friends bring other meals. Jeff shares his with them, and they share theirs with him. They’d never tasted fruit juice before, nor chocolate, and asked if they came from Australia. They didn’t realize such delights existed there in Hovd itself. He’s also been able to start sharing Better Food with them. Actually the lady has been a recipient of a hearing aid the team had given out on a visit to their little settlement.

Of course Jeff is unable to access the internet there and asked me to contact you all. We have no trouble ringing him on his mobile.

Digital Photography School Weekly Assignment

This week's assignment topic is quite close to my heart - coffee!!!

This week I need to give a really big thanks to Bon-Amici, a cafe in Toowoomba. I was up there last Tuesday replacing a server in the RACQ branch, and whenever I'm in Toowoomba (for work or otherwise), I always love to grab a coffee from Bon Amici - they use Merlo Coffee and make a great expresso.

This week I asked if I could jump behind the counter and take some shot of coffee being poured. However I made a rookie mistake, too high an ISO, and didn't account for light and movement... not one of those shots were any good.

However as I sat down to enjoy my expresso, I chose a table with some really unique lighting curtosy of a down light, and some sunlight coming in through the windows. So I still got a shot I really liked.

Flat on my back...

That's basically where I've been since Thursday. Without warning my back started aching again and I spent all day Friday lieing around home, unable to move.

I'm still sore, and had to be careful all weekend, but I am at work this morning - not planning on doing any lifting though. Only have today and tomorrow till I have a week and a halfs holidays so hopefully that will allow some more time for healing.

The only time I went out was Saturday night, went for a BBQ dinner at Southbank. I sprained my ankle when kicking a soccer ball with some mates...

Just my luck eh???

Wednesday, 10 October 2007

Finally a Gambian Blogger.

Every now and then I peruse the net for different blogs. One thing I keep an eye out for are bloggers who are from or in The Gambia.

The Gambia holds a special place in my heart after the time I spent there working as a missionary in 2004, they are a unique people, and I'm really glad to finally have found someone not only writing in The Gambia, but are Gambian themselves. is maintained by Amran Gaye and here's his little blurb about himself.

I am a Gambian, currently working at YMCA Gambia as a sysadmin. I am interested in writing, and this is my attempt to present my country, and my experience living here.
I also worked at the YMCA Technical Training Institute while in The Gambia, I was helping to start the Christian Union there, so I know the campus that Amran is working at, and I'm pretty interested to find out what sort of Sys-Admin work is going on there.

He covers some current affairs from The Gam, but also has some pretty humerous stories which relate to the life-style in the Kombos region of The Gambia.

I've added him to my blogroll.

Monday, 8 October 2007

I just had too...

To round off everything Bathurst.

This is especially for those of you who don't really know the extent of the history of this race in Australia - watch this video, made as an intro to the Channel 7 coverage this year, these are the drivers speaking a bit about the cars and history, but the end bit which is a walk through the track is just unreal.

Some great footage of big crashes from over the years, and some great quotes from the drivers... I love Lowndsey when he's talking about Skyline; "Then you come to Skyline... ooooh crap!"

Good sum up :-P

Garry Coleman

Well it seems fitting to round up a 'Bathurst themed' weekend of blogging with a Thumbs Up to the V8 Supercar Chaplain Garry Coleman.

When it comes to my chaplaincy work I guess you can say Garry is my boss... he organises and runs the whole motorsport arm of Sports Chaplaincy Australia. Putting this on top of travelling to every V8 Supercar event, ministering to teams and officials, and also looking after some speedway racing in Sydney, Garry's got a pretty busy job. He's not a young man these days, but does a fantastic job.

Walking around the pits at Queensland Raceway with him this year I got a small idea of the respect the entire racing community has for him. Drivers, engineers, media personnel, officials, marshalls and corporate staff all stop and take the time to greet and have a few words with Garry - well it's more that Garry stops to take the time with them - always with warm words and signs of great friendships which have been built over the 15 years of Garry's work.

The ministry model that Garry has with the V8 circuit (and what Dad and I have adopted at the Willowbank drags) is one of building relationships. Through being there in the normal life struggles, emotions and personal highs of people you build an unprecedented relationship with them... it's through that you can start 'injecting' Christ into their lives - sometimes without them really realising it. It's something that's apparent in Garry's relationships with everyone at the track.

From big things like marrying Steven Johnson, leading memorials for Peter Brock and speaking at the funeral of Mark Porter last year, to the small things of catching up on the health of a track commentator and checking the well being of merchandise staff, it all incorporates Garry's intent on showing people Jesus.

Garry's one big public moment of the year is the opening prayer on Sunday morning at Bathurst (and recently at Indy as well), the Bathurst one is always telecast and this year's blew me away. He spoke and prayed with conviction, remembering the family of people affected by last years accidents, praying for the safety of all marshalls, drivers and team members, and acknowledging that we are all imperfect beings who need God - even if we ignore that fact. And to top it all off it's proclaimed proudly in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord - AMEN.

Garry on the big screen at Bathurst 2005

He speaks with such God given authority, so that not one of the few million or so people watching world-wide could doubt this man's faith in God.

Garry's a great role model for me - and this is probably longer than most 'Thumbs Ups' but I can't say enough good stuff about this bloke...

1st - 2nd - 3rd - FORD!

With about 25 laps to go in yesterdays Bathurst 1000 I was thinking "This has been an uneventful, almost boring race."

Apart from it looking like a Ford victory, the first 135 laps really hadn't provided much to write about... sure seeing the Number 1 Rick Kelly/Garth Tander car struggle all day with brake issues was nice - the trip across the sand at 300km/h would have been a hairy one for Rick earlier in the race. Seeing the pace of the #6 FPR and #888 Vodaphone Falcons was heart warming, but nothing had really happened to make the race memorable.

Then it rained....

The small shower of rain suddenly changed the whole outcome of the race - within an instant Jason Bright went from needing an extra pitstop, to having a good change at an outright win, then only to slip on the wet track, hit the wall and end his race. A small clip of the wall by Mark Winterbottom meant the #6 FPR Falcon ended up with a flat tyre and took a hair raising ride across the sand at the bottom of Conrods Straight, leaving the pole sitter to struggle to a 10th finishing position.

Rain also took Russel Ingal and Mark Skaife out (two of the most experienced drivers in the field) when they slid at Regents Park and hit the wall - almost in tandem.

That left Craig Lowndes, Steven Johnson, James Courtney and Greg Murphy fighting hard for the last 15 or so laps of the race, all still on slick (dry weather) tyres on a damp and slippery track. The skill levels of these guys to fight each other for position without slipping into a wall or each other was exceptional. Steven Johnson's move of Lowndes at the end of Pit Straight to take the lead was fantastic! Unfortunately he slid a touch wide the next lap and both Lowndes and Courtney were able to pass him.

Those last laps were nerve racking - you had no idea if the next corner would be where they slid off, ran into each other or made a successful pass... 3 Fords up front with a Holden trailing close behind ready to spoil the show if any of the Ford drivers made a mistake.

In the end it was the second closest finish in Bathurst History (last year was the closest), but 2007 will be the most competitive finish, with 4 cars able to take the lead anytime on the last lap, and 10 cars on the lead lap at the end of the race.

Lowndes and Whincup made it back-to-back wins, which is just awesome. I've said before I'm becoming a big Jamie Whincup fan, and I've always been a Lowndes fan so I'm pretty happy they won. However, I wouldn't have minded if James Courtney/David Besnard had won, and would have been pretty impressed if the win had gone to Steven Johnson/Will Davison.

Having an all Ford podium is excellent - a proud day for Ford fans!

P.S - Some awesome photography from

P.P.S - Adding this youtube video - a news report with a great round up of the race. Footage of the Kelly off, Winterbottoms trip across the sand and the amazing pass Johnson put of Lowndes.

Saturday, 6 October 2007

It's On...


I love it, I live for it, every year since I can remember I have been excited, anxious and totally pumped for a full weekend of racing on the world's most exciting race track .

With Lowndes and Whincup winning Sandown this year, it's looking good for another Ford win. I'm really into Whincup's racing this year, I think he's a young guy who has an amazing talent. To have Lowndes and Whincup in the same car certainly sets up the most potent driving combination in the entire field... both drivers could still win the 2007 Driver's Championship.

Will Davison is someone else who's really stepping up to the plate this year. He's the No.1 driver for Dick Johnson Racing, relegating Steven Johnson to co-driver. Will's been consistent in practice so far and is looking good for a nice Top 10 Lap later today. The new paint job on the cars looks great too.

Also in typical Bathurst style, there has already been one big crash - in qualifying yesterday Damien White clipped the wall coming into the Esses, the force of the impact knocking him out. The car then careered down the mountain before slamming the calico wall. It tore the car apart.

Damien White won’t be returning to the circuit this weekend after a horrifying crash at the top of the Mountain. Damien lost consciousness during the accident and was airlifted from the circuit shortly after the crash. He is now stable and under observation.

It is a blow to the team and Damien’s co-driver, Christian Murchison. The damage done to the #14 Team BOC Falcon means that it is unlikely that the chassis will be repaired in time for Indy in a fortnight, let alone Sunday’s 1000 kilometre classic.


So bring on another awesome weekend of Australian motor racing history. Bathurst always brings on memorable moments, heart break and overjoyed success...

Friday, 5 October 2007

Looking Over the Shoulder (Part IV)

Final Session of Rob Coyle's speaking from Psalm 16 at Recharge...

~David's Prophecy

v10: because you will not abandon me to the grave, nor will you let your Holy One see decay.

-let your Holy One see decay

  • Acts 13:35-37 - Paul talks about the Holy One again, David is here in Psalm 16 looking forward to Jesus.
  • The Hebrew word used here for decay means like an animal trap - caught to the point of death.
-you will not abandon me to the grave

  • Because Jesus will not be caught in this trap of death, he can reach down and lift us out of our pit of decay.
  • The great thing about being a Christian is the assurance that as we die Jesus is waiting to take us into heaven.

~David's Pleasure

v11: You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

  • Three tenses


-You have made known to me...

  • David is saying "God, you've helped me to discern and that has helped me in times past"
  • The Hebrew used for know here was used in Genesis and is the same word used to describe Adam and Eve's sexual relationship:: "And Adam knew Eve"
  • Describes a deep deep intimacy. Like a husband and wife.


-you will fill me with joy in your presence...

  • David is saying "God when I spend time with you now it brings me unmeasurable pleasure.
  • How often do we really get pleasure from our time with God?
  • Are our church services providing that time?


-eternal pleasures at your right hand.
  • The Living Bible Translation says "And the pleasure of living with you forever"
  • All sin will be gone
  • Not just an absence of sin, but also the overwhelming presence of God.
  • Something David looks forward to, as should we.


Looking Over the Shoulder (Part III)

Continuing with thoughts from Rob Coyle's Recharge messages from Psalm 16....

~David's Pliability

v7: I will praise the LORD, who counsels me even at night my heart instructs me.

  • Does anyone else have those moments at night, just before you go to sleep where so many answers to the questions you're facing in life just come to you? It seems David talks of the same thing
  • What are our reaction to those thoughts at those times?
  • Are we like a block of clay? Solid, but when exercised by an outside force it can be shaped and moulded into whatever the potter desires.
  • Or are we like a brick? A block which cannot be changed?
  • Pliable - like the clay, can be changed, reconstructed - it's solid but not rigid.
  • If we want to pick up God's plan we need to be pliable (reacting) to what he says
  • To get better at this we need to reduce the time between hearing God and doing it.

~God's Place

v8: I have the LORD always before me, Because he is at my right hand I will not be shaken.

  • God is in two places at once... before me, and at my right hand.
-before me

  • When someone is right in front of you, you can always see them
  • You see what they are doing
  • It is easier to follow someone who is right in front of you
-he is at my right hand

  • Your 'right hand man' - someone you're dependant on, your strength, your trust.

  • The way we are always able to take the right hand of God is to always put him before me.
  • Have we this week in situations that shake us set God before us?
  • Do we act like we know he is in control?
v9: Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body will rest secure

  • You know when you are in the wrong place with God.

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

This weeks Photography Assignment

ASSIGNMENT: In My Life....

As a Motorsports Chaplain, car racing is a big part of my life, it's also a great passion.

However as a chaplain, when I'm working at the track I don't wear any supporters clothes... It's a bit hard to have a chat with a driver when you're wearing an opposing teams hat and t-shirt.

So with the Bathurst 1000 this weekend (all you non-Aussies may not know it, but the biggest race event in Australia, and one of the toughest in the world) this is a very big part of my life at the moment.

I'm not going to Bathurst as a chaplain, so sitting at home watching it this weekend I'm free to don the Ford gear like a true fanatic... I think this photo captures that just a little :-P - I am wearing my Official V8 Supercar cap though, just to remind everyone I am still the chappy at heart...

A break from the messages...

Urgh!!! This morning I was helping unload a heap of new computers off a truck (great thing to do with a sore back eh?) and I got hit in the throat with the corner of a cardboard box.

Hard cardboard, made into a point by the corner of a cube... I think it bruised my larynx... gee it hurt! For the first few seconds I could hardly breathe, it scared some of the guys who were there... it still feels a bit weird, swallowing has been uncomfortable all day and there is still a mark right on my Adams Apple.

Tuesday, 2 October 2007

Looking Over the Shoulder (Part II)

[From Session 2 of Rob Coyle's messages at Recharge 07]

~David's People

v3 & 4: As for the saints who are in the land, they are the glorious ones in whom I delight.

The sorrows of those will increase who run after other gods, I will not pour out their libations of blood or take up their names on my lips.

-glorious ones in whom I delight

  • It is who we choose to hang around with that will infiltrate who we are.
  • David chooses to hang around people who run after God as Lord (see part 1)
-The sorrows of those will increase...

  • In Hebrew sorrow translates to a meaning of intense anguish
  • Used in the same context as what Job experienced.
-I will not pour out their libations of blood...

  • God won't accept the sacrifices offered by people who are running after other gods.
  • Some people of Israel would sacrifice to both God and other gods, just the act of preparing a sacrifice doesn't mean God will accept it.

  • Who do you hang around? Do you spend a priority of times with saints or the sorrowful?
  • Evangelism isn't negated in this, spreading the world amongst the lost is important, but as in John 13:34 and 35: "A new commandment I give you, love one another, as I have loved you. In this way all men will know that you are my disciples." People will know that you are Christ's disciples by the way you love other disciples. That is the greatest evangelical tool you have, the relationship with other saints.

~God's Plan

v5 & 6: LORD, you have assigned me my portion and my cup, you have made my lot secure

  • God's plan is like a fantastic feast, something you just want to continue eating and eating and eating.
  • Why then do we feel like we are eating brussel sprouts?
  • God doesn't just give us amazing riches? Our lives don't become easy, however when you find out what God wants you to do with your life, when you live his plan, that's when you feel like you are dining at that amazing feast.
  • Your feast may be a successful management job looking out for a group of people in a Christian way, or maybe your feast is living in a remote village in Africa, with no power, no hot water, learning another language but teaching and living in a community learning about Jesus.
-you have made my lot secure
  • He secures your life - "Like dice that always roll double sizes" - you have the assurance that he is looking after your well being.
  • God's plan for you is a penthouse with a magnificent ocean view - you will always love the look of it.
  • "For Mother Theresa that penthouse had a balcony overlooking the slums of Calcutta" but she never grew tired of its beauty.

"Even though some things are bitter in taste, they are sweet inside because that's where God wanted you to be"

**That's session two wrapped up, session three and four coming up soon.

Looking Over the Shoulder (Part I)

Ok finally it seems I can sit down and write up some of my notes from the main speaking sessions at Recharge.

I went to Recharge with a real hunger to learn something new. I'm glad I decided to take notes (a last minute decision), because the teaching from Rob Coyle was fantastic.

Rob had been the Executive Director of Youth Dimension in Melbourne for 28 years. Youth Dimension's passion is reaching every school with the message of Jesus, hoping to see young people have an authentic relationship with Jesus and also to change a culture where the family is disintegrating.

Rob also barracks for the Essendon Bombers (woohoo).

Rob's message series was called 'Looking Over the Shoulder' and was taken from Psalm 16, a psalm which gives this over the shoulder look at David's life and faith, just some of the core details of David's life.

In true preacher style each main point begins with P.

~David's Protection

Psalm 16 - v1: Keep me safe, O God for in you I take refuge.

  • We can feel physically unsafe
  • We can feel emotionally unsafe
  • We can feel spiritually unsafe
-"keep me safe"

  • in Hebrew the 'keep' and ' safe' has the same meaning as in Job where Satan says to God "You have protected Job from me"
  • means like a thorny impenetrable hedge which is placed around a camp. There's no way anything can get in.
-"in you I take refuge"
  • God is where David is actively turning for protection.

~David's Position

v2 : "I said to the LORD, "You are my Lord, apart from you I have no good thing.""

-LORD and Lord translate differently.
  • LORD: Yahweh - the most reverent name for God
  • Lord: Absolute ruler, controller of a kingdom.
-David is stating his position, the God of everything, his creator, the all powerful is his absolute ruler.

-apart from you I have no good thing
  • It doesn't matter how you act or what you do. The only thing that makes anything I do look right in God's eyes is whether or not I position God as the Lord of my life.
  • If you want to have this same position as David, Jesus expects no more from you than what he went through himself...

That's the end of the first session - I was going to do them all-in-one but it seems it will be the longest post in the world if I do that. Expect part 2 tonight or tomorrow...

Monday, 1 October 2007

Prayerful Leading.

It's been a little while since I've had the opportunity to give someone the Thumbs Up (Want to know what this is? Click the image above and read all about it).

I haven't been to a AM service at Whitehill for a little while, but went along yesterday because I was planning to go to City North in the evening. I've never really taken much notice before, but I realised I have always enjoyed the way one of the older guys (Ian) takes church prayers... (and before I get in trouble, Ian isn't that old... just older than me).

Instead of just praying through the prayer requests, Ian mentions each one and gives time for everyone to pray individually. Though it's not spoken allowed I think this creates such a real situation of 'corporate' prayer, because instead of just listening along, suddenly the responsibility to pray is on the individual, and if the responsibility is taken up, then the entire church is corporatly praying for the issue.

It's the way Ian's always done it, but for some reason I only realised its value yesterday.

Notable Mention

Well my back is continuing to heal - still sore, but nothing near what I was experiencing Thurdsay night.

Had a very quiet weekend because of it, got to sit and watch all the lead up to the AFL Grand Final, which was nice, especially with all the tributes to Hird and Sheedy. Oh and to see the Cats demolish Port was pretty awesome too...

I also spent a bit of time reading James Hird's autobiography Reading the Play, great stuff, and expect a blog post on it once I'm done.

The Recharge blogs are still coming, just couldn't sit in front of a PC long enough to type up my thoughts.

However a boost for me this morning was to check out the Digital Photography School blog for the weekly mini-contest results. My birthday cake shot was the first of the 'Notable Mention' shots. Needless to say I'm stocked that out of over 100 photos mine was picked in the top 3.

Check it out here dPS Blog - This Week in the Digital Photography School Forums.

You can see the photo below in this post.
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