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"DAVID MIERS is reported to be in the top 10 cage fighters in Gosford. He has some serious dish washing skills and thinks that Elizabeth Bennet is hot. Although he thinks that his wife Rowena is hotter. David works in youth ministry for a great church. Likes to: speak in third person, watch and play soccer, eat food and surf the web. He has never watched Star Wars."

Prayer Friday is back! (#17) Friday, March 30, 2007 |

Here is where we left off last year. Thanks to those who have asked for points and encouraged me to do this again. I value your partnership in Jesus.
>Thank God for term 1 of ccecyouth. Great term in juniors and seniors.
>Pray for our youth camp coming up in the holidays.
>Pray for my sister that she would have a healthy baby boy.
>Pray for Al Stewart in his new job. (If I were an anglican I'd vote for him to be the next ab!)
Have a good weekend. Check out our latest J-Walk & let me know what you think... How good is the cover!! Good job Nicole. (Make sure you check out the centre fold article... very good!!)

Pics from London Thursday, March 29, 2007 |

My bro has put up 5 of his fav shots from London. This is my favourite. Go check the rest out here (leave him comments so he feels special).

Digital Humanity |

Marty has just posted the 4th in a blog series entitled Digital Humanity.

#1, #2, #3 and #4 (my guess is the serious isn't over yet)

Interesting stuff.  Go check it out.

Doctor Who vs. Darth Vadar Wednesday, March 28, 2007 |

Keeping the Faith - smh radar |

Here (h/t Jodie).  What do you think?

Defence Force Chaplains Tuesday, March 27, 2007 |

Aaron has some good reflections here.

Making money on the internet |

Check out this site (h/t Relevant TV). Basically they are selling advertising space on their car & t-shirts to sponsor their trip across the USA. Clever... if it works!

I've often thought it wouldn't be too hard to make some money on the internet. Remember the red paper-clip guy!! Have you got any ideas on how to make money on the internet (not necessarily in the same category as YouTube, Google, Facebook, MySpace et al.)

Hillsong Colour on JTV |

JTV had a Hack report on Hillsong's Colour Conference.  Click here.  The conference seems to be all about empowering women... and doesn't seem to be about Jesus.  The ex-member that they interviewed doesn't really nail it with her critique.  And the angle that Steve Cannane takes in the report is more of a feminist agenda... There are some classic Bobbie quotes though!  What do you think?

I heart Saturdays Monday, March 26, 2007 |

1) In which unisex shop are we trying the glasses on?
2) I'm not an emo - why are my toenails black?
3) On which major road is the sky picture taken?
4) What car is Row standing in front of?

$1 to the first correct answer for each question.

My brother is now an international coffee snob |

Click here... by the way I went to Starbucks twice last week!

Power Napping |

Here is a link to a couple of sites with some tips on power napping.  I like power napping.  15 minutes feels like a few hours.  I probably only do them once or twice every couple of weeks.  But would love to do them more... I do think that they increase productivity.  Do you remember on Seinfeld when Kramer stopped going to bed at night and just had a power nap every 3 hours??  Funny kid...

Do you power nap?  What are your tips?

Youth Ministry: Most.passionate.song.ever Saturday, March 24, 2007 |

Listen to our 1st birthday episode of On the Poddy. Listen all the way to the end for a long and passionate song... good times! And make sure you help us to #1 in iTunes!!!

Youth Ministry: death2LIFE TALKCAST Friday, March 23, 2007 |

Here is a series of talks from youth group term 4 AD2005. This recording was from Shred Hotham '06.

Jeff Buckley - Documentary From BBC |

I saw this link from Challies this morning. There's a bucket load of documentaries. While doing some admin this morning I've had this Jeff Buckley one on in the background. Very good.

Matt McGill Sports Instructional: Swimming Thursday, March 22, 2007 |

(h/t Josh) This is classic! Matt McGill is one of the guys on the Simply Youth Ministry podcast. I'd love to do a series like this with ccecyouth. Who's in??

D.A. Carson MP3 Library |

Click here for a sweet list (h/t JT)

I have skype |


Youth Ministry: Why care about Y? Wednesday, March 21, 2007 |

Why care about Y? is a conference on how to reach Generation Y. The brochure says it will be a critically important seminar in understanding how to reach our 12-29 year olds. 9:30am Saturday 31st March 2007 @ Wesley Conference Centre (Pitt St, Sydney). $25. Greg Clarke & Jodie McNeill are speaking. Rego form here... Info here...

I'm thinking about going... are you keen?
(If you've already got ministry to Gen Y nailed - I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments!)

Shine, Jesus Shine Tuesday, March 20, 2007 |

Last night we travelled into the big smoke for the Moore College Graduation. The talk was a cracker and it was super encouraging hearing what each of the grads are now up to as they preach Jesus in Sydney and beyond. It was fun to catch up with friends & family. I don't go into the city often... so took some pics to document our excursion. Congratulations to my brother-in-law Martin.

Did you go? Did you enjoy the song the pipe organist played at the end?!?!

Steve Jobs unveils the iRack |

(h/t marko)

Ten reasons why XXXCHURCH should be in Second Life Monday, March 19, 2007 |

xxxchurch.com has just set up a property in Second Life. Below are 10 reasons why they think that they ought to be in 2nd life. It's crazy how seriously 2nd lifers take 2nd life! It's crazy the amount of money spent on 2nd life! It's not that difficult to believe the dodgy stuff that goes on in 2nd life... it just reflects the reality of sin in our 1st life! I think it's a good thing to have Christians (lifechurch.tv have set up a posse in 2ndLife) in 2nd life... it's bizarre to think about - but there is a good opportunity to preach the Lord Jesus and his forgiveness of sin in this make believe world.
  • 1) There are 4.2 million members of the Second Life virtual world.
  • 2) Nearly half of all Americans who belong to online communities claim that the virtual world they inhabit is as important as the real world.
  • 3) In the last 24 hours over 1.7 million real US dollars will be spent in Second Life.
  • 4) Half of the most popular destinations in the Second Life world are pornographic.
  • 5) There is actual Second Life porn—shot and distributed exclusively in the virtual world.
  • 6) Sex brothels are common in Second Life and include the availability of virtual sexual encounters with children avatars.
  • 7) For 220 Second Life dollars (about $1.30) you can participate in a fantasy rape at a Second Life rape club.
  • 8) 44 percent of virtual sex in Second Life hermaphrodite/intersexed ageplay groups is father to daughter in nature.
  • 9) 50 percent of those on Second Life participate in gender bending. Gender bending: when your Second Life avatar is opposite of your real world gender.
  • 10) There are zero sanctions against virtual, Second Life, child pornography in the United States—worldwide only the Netherlands and Italy are taking steps to pass laws banning this activity.
From here

Complementarianism |

I was asked what my thoughts were on a woman's role and church (here and at church).  As requested, here is a link to a free book edited by John Piper.  Also this website has some helpful resources.  Plus this one (an Australian site).  Let me know what you think...

Why Does a Church Need an Art Gallery? |

The answer is simple: to spread the gospel, of course.  Read more...

Of Brokenness and Buddies Sunday, March 18, 2007 |

Mark Driscoll hasn't blogged much this year.  In this post he explains some of the reasons.  It's an encouraging post with some helpful wisdom on running the distance.

satanhateslife.com Saturday, March 17, 2007 |

This is one of the billboards that lifechurch.tv are using in a current campaign. Click here to view the campaign.

What do you think of the strategy?

Episode 46 - Tanzania Style |

Here is the latest episode of On the Poddy. Jono Vink is one of our link missionaries... super-encouraging episode.

Youth Ministry: New initiative Thursday, March 15, 2007 |

Crossfire has just kicked off.  Uber-exciting. Pray for Sam and the team.

Youth Ministry: Crazy Answers # 1 |

On the way to scripture today I reflected on an answer that I've heard many times from young teens (or late primary students). In answer to a question like: "Why did Jesus have to die?", they answer "If he didn't we wouldn't be here today."

What's that mean?? It may have some truth in it based on how history and culture has worked itself out over the past 2000 years, but is there any theological basis? I don't think so. The world would look different... but I think they've misunderstood something of what Jesus' death achieves.

Funnily enough there was one boy today who wrote the above answer almost verbatim!!!

Have you ever heard this response?
How do you respond to it?

Youth Ministry: Tim's Take on Terrigal Teenagers Wednesday, March 14, 2007 |

I caught up with Tim Baldwin yesterday afternoon for a coffee and too many Krispy Kremes! Tim is a great encouragement and I enjoy talking with him about Jesus, ministry and culture. We were talking about the dominant culture on the Central Coast. His reflection is that there is an idolatry of the lifestyle. Coasties LOVE the lifestyle. Coasties boast in the lifestyle. Coasties scorn Sydney-siders who must deal with traffic, pollution and people. One idea that Tim had was to tap into that culture by acknowledging how good a place the Central Coast truly is. But to help move people on from that and see that what matters is not where you live, but Jesus.

We then talked about the teenagers on the Central Coast. He came up with 2 things:
  • Teenagers want to fit in
  • Teenagers want to be where the action is
This is one of the most fundamental desires of a typical teenager. The desire to fit in with the crowd. Teenagers want to be cool. Teenagers want to be accepted. One of the ways to tap into this desire to be accepted is to acknowledge that the teenagers you are ministering to are thinking like that... "I know that you're desire in life is to be accepted and to fit in at school..." (in the context of a talk) One way to challenge this would be to encourage teenagers to actually stand out for Jesus. Stand out and be different from their classmates... because of Jesus. This doesn't mean they have to tuck their shirt into their undies or wear socks with sandals etc... but to live radically different from their peers when it comes to what they value, what they believe and how they live.

This 2nd point goes hand in hand with the first one. Teenagers want to fit in... and be at the right place doing the right things. The right parties. The right beach. The right shopping centre. We need to show teenagers that JESUS is where the action is at! Meeting with Jesus' people around Jesus' word for Jesus' glory on a Friday night is far more profound than hanging out at Erina Fair! Ephesians 3 helps to show us just how BIG the gathering of church is in the cosmos. We need to show teenagers that if they want to truly be where the action is at - they need to be with Jesus.

I really like these two points.

What do you think?
Is that true in your context?
How do we tap into this culture?

Would love to hear your comments...

Tim Keller - Doing Justice Tuesday, March 13, 2007 |

Tim Keller at Resurgence 06 conference: listen here and leave comments...

Bono's Acceptance Speech Monday, March 12, 2007 |

What do you think?

I'll pay for my own lunch thanks... Sunday, March 11, 2007 |

Chatted to a guy at a 21st last night for about an hour and a half. I'd been praying that I'd be bold and take the opportunity to chat to him... one of the speeches was gold! It really lead well into a discussion. It was tragic to chat to this guy. The last thing he said was that even if I could 100% convince of the truth of the claims that Jesus makes about himself, he'd rather just stand before God and take his own punishment. Tragic. Row found this quote from John Stott (The Cross of Christ) today. The last sentence (in bold) pretty much summarises this chap. Pray for him that God would give him ears to hear.
The doctrine of substitution affirms not only a fact (God in Christ substituted himself for us) but its necessity (there was no other way by which God's holy love could be satisfied and rebellious human beings could be saved). Therefore, as we stand before the cross, we begin to gain a clear view both of God and of ourselves, especially in relation to each other. Instead of inflicting upon us the judgment we deserved, God in Christ endured it in our place. Hell is the only alternative. This is the 'scandal', the stumbling-block, of the cross. For our proud hearts rebel against it. We cannot bear to acknowledge either the seriousness of our sin and guilt or our utter indebtedness to the cross. Surely, we say, there must be something we can do, or at least contribute, in order to make amends? If not, we often give the impression that we would rather suffer our own punishment than the humiliation of seeing God through Christ bear it in our place.
Yesterday I got my mobile phone back from 3 months using a loan phone. This photo was taken last night. 7 warm fuzzies to the first person or reptile to correctly identify the car I was driving...

Youth Ministry: J-Walk has landed Saturday, March 10, 2007 |

Our brand new monthly magazine for CCECYOUTH has just landed!! We launched it last night. There has been some good feedback already... Shout out to Alex, Jackson, Josh and Nicole - they are part of team J-walk - and have done a fantastic job! Thanks also to Aaron, Andrew, Andrew and Kelly for their contributions.

Go check it out here

What do you think? Would love to hear your feedback...

Jono Incredible Friday, March 09, 2007 |

Funny feature on Jono's new phone. He looks like Mr. Incredible!!

Monergism.com Thursday, March 08, 2007 |

Busy finishing what I blogged about yesterday.  No time for longer than 30 second post.  Here it is: Monergism.com has a new design.  This is good.  Check it out - it's got great content.

Youth Ministry: J-Walk is coming Wednesday, March 07, 2007 |

J-Walk is the name of a new magazine that we are launching on Friday night at CCECYOUTH. The magazine will have both web and print content.

J-Walk has been a long time coming! In 2003 on a youth group camp a number of teenagers were flicking through some girly magazine (Girlfriend? maybe?). It was reasonably innocent at the time... but it got me thinking that there isn't really anything available for the teenagers in my youth group to read that will help them make sense of the world around them (that's what those girly magazines are doing) and also what it means to be a Christian living in that world. When I was a teenager there was a youth magazine that matthiasmedia had running for a year called Zed - it almost sent them bankrupt - so they canned it! But at the time I wasn't at a great church and it was actually Zed that helped me to keep going as a Christian for that year!

I had plans at one stage to do a larger-scale project (ie Nation-wide)- but thought that I'd rather launch something specific to our context and our group - that other teenagers would be more than welcome to download and read as well. So each month we plan on putting out a printed edition of J-walk (glossy cover - with simple black and white pages), having a pdf downloadable from www.ccecyouth.com + a number of interactive articles online.

Basically the aim of J-walk is to help teenagers understand the Bible and the World. The key to understanding the world is understanding what God says about it in the Bible... my prayer is that our teenagers would be able to understand the world through the Bible's grid.

In the first edition I have an article that explains the title and what it means... so stay tuned! (I might even post it here)

A month ago I made this post on the youth site. And this guy found it and linked to it. It lead to 1000 hits of traffic - he has a very popular blog! They all said they liked the graphic in the comments section...

Do you like the logo? Do you think this whole J-Walk thing will be effective? Time will tell...

Leading better Bible studies |

Guthers wants some ideas on bible study leading.  Go help him...

I know you're special. Now give me my fries. |

This pic is from here. This lady does these cool index card sketches on her blog each week. Often very clever. She just got a book deal too.
Thinking that we are at the centre of the universe is taught in schools. I think it is at the root of sin - thinking we are at the centre rather than the Son (not sun) in his rightful place at the centre of the universe. Pray that 2 Corinthians 5:14-15 would be worked out in your life.

The Prayer of a Dying Man |

This is an exciting story.  One of my favourite parables.
This is even more exciting.  It's not a parable.

'For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.' So they began to celebrate.  I can hear the angels in heaven now!

Saying Sorry # 2 Tuesday, March 06, 2007 |

Last week I spoke about saying sorry.  Here is a great example of an apology.  I appreciate his willingness to take responsibility and there are some helpful reflections on racism that apply to our context as well.  (We spoke about racism in Australia on The Poddy this week... with particular reference to the Cronulla riots.)  I'll repeat what I said last week: Sometimes we are slow to apologise. I need to be quick to apologise.  Maybe you do too...

Episode 44 - Attack of the Pooping Pelican Monday, March 05, 2007 |

Here is the latest episode of On the Poddy. Good times.

Around the web Sunday, March 04, 2007 |

This blog post is being sent in from my email account.  It means that it's a lot quicker to update your blog.  I'm not planning on using it all the time - I don't think it will allow posting pictures - and I like having pictures.  So this is a bit of a test.  Some stuff:
Hope you've had a good weekend...

Jesus' tomb is empty Friday, March 02, 2007 |

I'm not sure if you have followed this story in the last week. There have been stacks of great responses from Christians. Click here for a summary (h/t JT).

I just listened to John Piper give a brief blurb on his response. Listen here.

Eight Reasons Why I Believe That Jesus Rose from the Dead
By John Piper
A summary:
1. Jesus himself testified to his coming resurrection from the dead.
2. The tomb was empty on Easter.
3. The disciples were almost immediately transformed from men who were hopeless and fearful after the crucifixion (Luke 24:21, John 20:19) into men who were confident and bold witnesses of the resurrection (Acts 2:24, 3:15, 4:2).
4. Paul claimed that, not only had he seen the risen Christ, but that 500 others had seen him also, and many were still alive when he made this public claim.
5. The sheer existence of a thriving, empire-conquering early Christian church supports the truth of the resurrection claim.
6. The Apostle Paul’s conversion supports the truth of the resurrection.
7. The New Testament witnesses do not bear the stamp of dupes or deceivers.
8. There is a self-authenticating glory in the gospel of Christ’s death and resurrection as narrated by the biblical witnesses.
Read the full article here

Plankton on Teamwork Thursday, March 01, 2007 |

Aaron "Plankton" Plunkett is back from his month long boot-camp with the army. It sounds like it was a good time for him... but it will be good to have him back. (He might be able to use his new skills to keep rowdy punks quiet at youth group!) I can't believe he has a gun!! Guns don't kill people - Aaron kills people! Go check out his site for some more pics.

Yesterday he posted on some thoughts on teamwork. He has some great reflections on teamwork in the army and for Christians. Here is a snippet:
It's amazing how closely I bonded with the recruits of 16 platoon. We all had a common goal and learnt to work together on any given task and to rely on each other when times were tough... I reflected on this and how we as Christians have a common goal much more profound than that of the Australian Army. We are one in Christ with a common goal to glorify Him and further His kingdom. How much more should we as Christians be sticking together and working as a team!?!
Go read the rest here...