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Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Houston Public Toilets

The same toilet, but from the inside. Posted by Hello

Houston Public Toilets

Houston Public Toilet from the outside Posted by Hello


There's an interesting discussion going on about Schappelle Corby's sentence, and her conversion to Christianity over on Gush.

I thought this point was worth posting here:

- - - - - - - - - - -

(GodisWatching14 @ May 27 2005,20:03)
see thats thing only god no's if she done it or not....maybe her going to prision is because she did do it???

Quote (groovyjoss @ May 30 2005,00:45)
i would just like to say that God is not going to keep you out of prison just because you are innocent. God will put you exactly where he wants you when he wants you whether you are guilty, innocent or a three pound water buffalo.

May 30 2005,09:02)^ agreed... Jesus wasnt guilty, but he still had to die on a cross, and thats where God wanted him.

- - - - - - - - - - - -

(they then proceeded to discuss how much water buffalo weigh)

Monday, May 30, 2005

RSS & Feedburner

Now, if you're a regular reader here, you'd realise that I really don't know what I'm doing when it comes to web-tech stuff. Computers - I'm fine. Internet - I'm fine. Web (sites) - AAAHHH!!!

So, by some fluke, I've enabled an RSS feed for my site via feedburner. Feel free to subscribe (and, because I'm so generous, the subscription is free! haha)


"The Intensifire Band" played at "Force" on Saturday night. Force is an outreach initiative of Livewire Youth from Liberty Hill Christian Centre, in Chullora. We played before Crying out Loud, who I've heard before, and quite like. However, we both sounded pretty shocking on Saturday - the sound system was just a little bit too small to handle the volume we were producing.

I think my monitor was turned up as high as it went, and I still couldn't hear what I was playing!

It was a great night though - even though I couldn't hear out of my left ear for most of the night, people came to know Christ as their personal saviour, so that always makes a night a success :)

[40 Days] Week 2 : Fellowship

Surprisingly, I'm up-to-date on my reading (with thanks to freezing cold weather and a fantastic electric blanket).

Tonight I'm "running" our life group - that is, I'm taking the study for Week 2 : Fellowship - You were created for God's family. I watched tonight's study DVD yesterday afternoon (in the 2 hours I was home for), and it looks as though it's a good study.

The one challenge in our group is to keep the topic of conversation on-track - but then it's usually me who takes it off track, so maybe that won't be such an issue tonight! If we were to do everything suggested in the study guide, the life group would take around 2.5 hours....which is way too long if you ask me....maybe we'll just to the "required" questions, and see where we end up...


I just discovered that Hillsong has translated their songs into Pitjantjatjara, which is the language spoken by the aboriginal tribes in the area that I grew up in. We took Pit classes at primary school - unfortunately, I can't remember anything (I only remember slightly more from my 4 years of Japanese class!)

Friday, May 27, 2005

The Orange Side?

Interesting advertisement about the power of the dark side vs the power of hollywood execs :)

Thursday, May 26, 2005

[40 Days] Update

Well...sadly, I'm about 5 days behind in my reading. I forgot to read on Saturday and Sunday of last week, and then I left it at my Life Group on monday night - and I couldn't get it back until last night!!!

I've got lots of reading to do now - I'm leading the group next monday, so I'd better be up to date by then...

[AFL] Tipping Update

This quote from "The AFL Runner" (the official AFL email...)

"If you picked four winners last weekend then you know your footy. If you picked five, well, you're a genius..."

Needless to say, I picked 5 winners last week. Both my parents picked 4, my sister 2, and my brother 3...

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Thoughts On Anakin, Vader (and me)

** Caution....these thought are still in the process of being formed! **

Ever since watching Episode III last Thursday, I've been pondering some points of the movie. I understand that the movie was not written from any particular religious perspective (as far as I'm aware), but I've always thought that we can always learn from things around us; like when Jesus told parables. He was teaching biblical principles through circumstances that the general person could relate to, and experience in their every day life.

One scene from Ep3 that really stuck in my mind is when Palpatine is speaking to Anakin, confidentially. He begins to plant seeds of doubt in Anakin's mind. He says to Anakin "they (the Jedi Council) don't trust you!...that's why they haven't made you a Master". Palpatine even says to Anakin that if he truly understood the force, even the dark side of the force, that he would be stronger, more powerful, even, than the Master Jedi's. He manages to convince Anakin that the Jedi aren't looking out for him, that they don't have his best interests at heart - that they don't appreciate the Jedi that he is...that in fact they're planning to overthrow the Republic and take control of the parliament.

Does that sound familiar to anyone? I know it sounds familiar to me. What was it that satan said to Adam and Eve in the garden?

Genesis 3

The Man and Woman Sin
1Now the serpent was the shrewdest of all the creatures the LORD God had made. "Really?" he asked the woman. "Did God really say you must not eat any of the fruit in the garden?"

2"Of course we may eat it," the woman told him. 3"It's only the fruit from the tree at the center of the garden that we are not allowed to eat. God says we must not eat it or even touch it, or we will die."

4"You won't die!" the serpent hissed. 5"God knows that your eyes will be opened when you eat it. You will become just like God, knowing everything, both good and evil."

Just like how Palpatine planted seeds of doubt in Anakin's heart, so satan did in the garden of Eden. And, he continues to do that today. We become indecisive, unsure as to which way to go - we become unable to discern between that which is good and that which is not.

The seeds of doubt in our hearts can manifest in even more subtle ways. I know for me, satan constantly attacks me in the area of my identity in Christ. "You're not really that good....who are you to think that about yourself..." These attacks come to undermine our/my confidence in Christ.

Then there's the other side of the coin "Why didn't they pick you for that solo? Don't they realise that you're better than anyone else? You could have done a much better job than the person they picked..." These attacks come to create pride and arrogance in my life.

Satan's desire is that we lose sight of the prize that God has set before us (me!). And, he'll use any method that he can. In destroying our identity in Christ, we're effectively paralysed. We cannot fulfil the purposes of God for our life if we don't even believe that God has our best interests at heart!

How can I (effectively) minister if my heart is full of pride, no matter how hidden it may be? If I'm arrogant, how can I minister out of humility?How can I minister if I don't believe that God has called me, chosen me, annointed me?

I've enlarged and high-lighted verse 4 and 5 above for a reason. It was the reason that Eve took the apple and ate it. It was the reason that Anakin turned to the dark side. To become powerful, to live forever, to know all things.

As I mentioned at the start, this post is really just a stream of consciousness that I've been pondering for the past few days...and I know that I'll continue to think about. I hope it made sense...comments are welcome :)

Monday, May 23, 2005


Well I'll be the first to admit that my knowledge in the area of all things Hitchhikers is lacking.

However, that didn't stop me from going to see the movie. For one, it's British Sci-Fi Comedy, which is one of my favourite things to watch (I was raised on Red Dwarf).

The movie went for just over 2 hours, and I laughed the whole way through the movie. Some bits were simply unbelievable, and some bits you want to remember forever.

A memorable moment was when the Sperm Whale (who was previously a guided nuclear missile) is falling to the ground asking himself questions such as "Who am I? What is my purpose in life" "What is the reason for my existance" - for someone who's now in week 2 of "40 Days of Purpose", I found those questions eerily familiar...

BTW - if anyone knows where I can get a toy Marvin, please let me know!!!

[AFL] Round 9 Update

Well I'm officially on top of the family footy tipping comp, albeit by 1 point. (I backed the Swans, which is what got me over the line!)

However, I'm still in shock with the big upset of the round - Collingwood (booo!) defeated the Eagles! I'm sure that Bruce will havesome comment on that shock. I didn't see the football as I wasn't near a TV during the weekend, but with a score of 8.10.118 (collingwood) to West Coast's 15.5.95, I'm sure it would have been an interesting game to watch.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Quote of the Day : Episode II

"Doubt thou the stars are fire;
Doubt that the sun doth move;
Doubt truth to be a liar;
But never doubt God's Love"

Quote of the Day

I was sent this .gif file of a quote by Mother Theresa, so I thought I'd share it with you:

Star Wars : Epiosode III

Well I've seen it. And at the normal hour of 8pm on a thursday night, too.

I loved it.

I think that Episode III was the only episode that I've seen at a "real" cinema; Episode II was seen at a country cinema, which means small(er) screen and not so good sound.

I'm not sure what I was expecting, but when I heard a fighter plane coming up BEHIND me, I must admit - I was alert, but not alarmed! I loved it. There wasn't much dialogue - I mean, you know what's going to happen anyway - they could have mimed and it would have made sense! The "intense negotiations" (ref: Ep II) were spectacular.

Even as Anakin turned to the dark side, I still felt for him. Inside, I was going "NO!!!! The power of good is ALWAYS stronger than that of evil - it's just that it's easier to be bad..."

I'm going to have to get Episodes 4, 5 & 6 on DVD now, so that I can remember how it all works out.

One flaw that a friend of mine pointed out: Padme (sp?) dies soon after childbirth, right? Apparently in a later episode, someone asks (possibly Vader/Anakin) Leia if she remembers her mother, and Leia comments that she was always sad. Sad? She was dead... I suggested to my friend (in all defence of Lord Lucas!) that possibly her adopted mother was sad, knowing what happened to Leia's parents...

And re the sabers - I thought the "baddies" had red sabers....but Anakin's was always blue, even at the end when he was Vader?

Thursday, May 19, 2005


Now I've heard some not so good reviews about this movie, so I was hesitant to watch it. However, watch it I did, and I loved it!

It's not my normal kind of movie, but it had an interesting mix of reality, comedy and drama, and it was very relateable. Adam Sandler even threw in a believable performance. The movie really moved me - I was really able to empathise with the characters on the screen. Tea Leoni plays a highly-strung wife very well!

There's a fantastic quote that I grabbed from the movie, but I'll post it later - I can't remember the whole quote at the moment.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005


Someone suggested that Firefox is the way to go in web browsing, so I thought that I'd give it a try.

So far:

I like how it has an inbuilt "live feed" reader, which is going to make browsing my regular blogs a bit quicker and easier. I also love the feature where you can open multiple pages within one window - the pages are tabbed, similar to multiple pages within excel spreadsheets.

However, I have encountered a few problems: even though it's set as my default browser, whenever I try and open my hotmail via MSN, it's opened in IE. Also, listening to streaming radio, where Media Player is embedded, doesn't seem to work, even though Mozilla assures me (via their web page...) that Firefox is compatible with Media Player.

Star Wars III opens tonight @ 12:01am...oh how I wish I didn't have to work tomorrow :(

[40 Days] Day 4

Surprise surprise! I'm still on track with the reading. And to prove it, here's a quote that I found interesting from today's reading:

" ...there are eternal consequences to everything you do on earth. Every act of our lives strikes some chord that will reverberate in eternity..."

I was going to add something profound here, but I forgot what it was : )

Have a great day!

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

[40 Days] Day 3

Well we had our first life group as a "40 days group" last night. It was a good night, the teaching was great.

I must admit that I'm struggling not to be sceptical about the whole thing. I'm always a bit wary of programs that promise success. And the fact that it's american (sorry Tom!) just makes some of the stuff a bit hard to swallow. So many "americanised" things just don't work here.

Eg: Rick (Warren) would make a joke and then laugh at his own joke - we'd just start laughing at him, not at his joke! And then he told us to give the person next to us a big cheesy grin...admittedly the DVD is made for new groups as well as established groups - but we've been together for close on 12 months now, so we felt like complete dills doing that...!

However, I am currently up to date on the reading. Last night I read the first two chapters, and this morning I read chapter 3. So far what I've read just seems like common sense.

"God has a purpose for your life." Yep, I agree with that.
"Life becomes simpler when you discover your purpose" Hmm, not to sure about that. It can make it easier to decide what to do, as you have something by which to compare/measure opportunities as they come along, but I don't think that that will necessarily make life simpler. (eg knowing your purpose won't stop your car from breaking down!)

A Sobering Thought

This is a fascinating (autobiographical) article by LaShawn Barber:

A fortuneteller once told me I had a curse hanging over my head and only she could lift it. "What kind of curse?" I asked, pressing for details. She wouldn't specify until I'd paid $50 up front and booked more sessions with her. I laughed, but cringed inside. While I didn't return to see the woman, I already knew what the curse was. I was 27, and I'd been drinking almost every day for nine years. [more]

Monday, May 16, 2005

[40 Days] Day 2

Yesterday (May 15th) marked the start of my church's "40 Days of Purpose" campaign.

So far, I should have read chapter one and two of the book "A Purpose Driven Life". But I haven't. I'm really shocking with this sort of thing. I'm supposed to be reading a certain book, so I'll start reading another.

I did that with my cell study - Instead of reading "What's so Amazing about Grace", I read all 13 books in the Patricia Cornwell "Kay Scarpetta" series. Admittedly I was still reading the cell book, but at a much slower rate. (I still haven't finished it).

I've also managed to polish off a 600page whopper "Girls Night In", and I'm halfway through "Captivating" (the girls "Wild at Heart").

I'll probably go home tonight and read the first two chapters of the campaign book, as we're studying it at cell tonight.

My plan is, to follow my "journey of discovery" on this blog.

I'm actually in two minds about the whole thing. I'm interested to see what the whole deal is about, but I've read some reviews where they've mentioned the book not being theologically sound. So I'm going into it with my eyes wide open. I'm not sure if I'll double check all 1200 verses used in the book, but I'll try my hardest!

Friday, May 13, 2005

Pet Peeve of the Day

I've never really thought about things I don't like (too much!), but just then I came across one:

I was drinking a beautiful hot cup of tea, and went to take another sip, only to realise that my cup was empty - and you could have sworn there was still enough for at least another mouthful left in there...

The thing that annoys me is that getting a bigger cup is not the answer to this dilemma! (I should know, I've got a HUGE cup at home!) The problem with the bigger cup is that by the time you reach the bottom of the cup, your cup of tea is cold, or it's gone too tannic (is that even a word?)

So what do you do?

Find a genie and wish for a never-ending cup of tea to go with the "pack of tim-tams that never runs out?"

Slogan Generator

Somehow I came across this. Makes for some interesting slogans: so far I've had "Choosy Mothers Choose Paula" and "Built Paula Tough". Enter random words and see what you come up with!

[AFL] Tipping update

As we launch ourselves into round 8, I thought I'd let everyone in on how the family tipping competition is going, and who's tipped who for this round: The letter in the brackets after the team indicates who's tipped that team eg. Dad = (D), Mum = (M), Paula = (P), Kimberley = (K), Benjamin = (B)

Round 8

Game 1:Carlton vs Geelong .........................Geelong (MDPK) Carlton (B)
Game 2:
Hawthorn vs Melbourne ..................Melbourne (MDPK) Hawthorn (B)
Game 3:
West Coast Eagles vs St Kilda .......Eagles (MDPK) St Kilda (B)
Game 4:
Kangaroos vs Western Bulldogs ....Bulldogs (DK) Kangaroos (MPB)
Game 5:Adelaide vs Brisbane Lions ...........Adelaide(MDPKB)
Game 6:
Sydney Swans vs Port Adelaide ....Sydney (MDP) Pt Adelaide (KB)
Game 7:Collingwood vs Richmond .............Richmond (MDPKB)
Game 8:
Essendon vs Fremantle .................Fremantle (MDK) Essendon (PB)

Tipping Postions:

Dad: 31
Mum: 32
Paula: 31
Kimberley: 27
Benjamin: 32

Interesting Note:

If you are just tipping by default (ie tipping for all home games) you would be on 35, compared to 20 if you tipped all away games.

Album #2

Those who have been around my blog for a while would realise that late last year we released "Shout", our second live album. You would also know that I was privelaged enough to be part of the experience of recording and releasing a fantastic album.

In october last year at Intensifire (LCLC's youth conference), we recorded the live half of our first youth album, with plans to go into the studio and record another 4-5 tracks, and release the album at Intensifire 2005. I lost my voice the morning of the live recording, but if you listen carefully, you may be able to hear me - singing an octave below my normal range!

I got a phone call monday, asking me to attend rehearsal on thursday for a "gig" that's coming up - the Intensifire band's been asked to play at a few youth groups. So imagine my surprise when I get there at 6:30 and discover that it's actually an album rehearsal too?! So that means, that I'll be playing keys for a couple of tracks on the album. I never thought that I'd get the chance to do that.

Oh - and the album's been given a name: Vol.1.
Original hey? I think a lot of thought went into that. lol

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Big Brother

Now, as I've already mentioned, I'm not planning on getting hooked this year. And just from what I've seen of the show, there's no-one that particularly catches my eye - apart from the twins, but that's probably because there's been a lot of attention directed towards them because of the challenge they have.

(If you don't know what their task is - it's to switch places every now and then, without the other housemates knowing anything about what's going on).

Basically, everyone in the house is single, young, and without inhibition. I've also noticed that a lot of the contestants are country kids who either still live in the country or have moved to the city. Now this is something I know about!

One thing about country boys that you may not know, is that they don't really talk much. Most of their communication is unspoken, or verbalised in grunts. SERIOUSLY!!! This was demonstrated fantastically when Glen (?) who's a shearer, was called into the house on a microphone violation. Big Brother told him off, and expected a response - but none came, until BB prodded him for an answer. Good fun.

Combine non-verbal country boys with chatty city girls? Interesting combo.

Also, there's the token "blonde bimbo" who announced the other night that she thinks that she's "quite intellect". I'm not joking - she used the word "intellect" three times, much to the other housemate's entertainment.

All this makes me think that the twins aren't going to have a problem going two weeks without anyone noticing their switches.

Asterisk Drinks ( * )

I've heard these advertised on Nova for a while, and since they're "99.9% fruit juice" I thought I'd give them a try.

Suprisingly, they're quite nice. But at $3 for 275mL, they're also slightly on the expensive side. I could probably get the same result at home with my favourite fruit juice and some mineral water...hmmm, now that's an idea!

Monday, May 09, 2005

Dessert Pizza

Sounds wrong, doesn't it?

I thought so too, until I had some saturday night after yet another trip to Hillsong Church.

Basically, it's a pizza base covered in Nutella (a choc-hazlenut spread), then custard and cream. The combination of the hot base and the cold toppings is brilliant, and it tastes great too!

My links

Paul suggested that I try www.allconsuming.net to manage my links for my books & music, etc. However, even though I'm "fluent" in computers, the net is a whole different kettle of fish - and since I'm running this site from work, I don't think there'd be enough time in the day to get my head around how to include it in my side bar - that is, unless someone has some easy hints on web page maintenance? I'm such a newbie here!


"Handsome Tom" over at www.lotrfanatic.com/blog/ extended a hello to me on his great blog, so I thought I'd say Hi back! (Or should I say G'day? - seriously, I don't think I've ever used that word as a serious greeting in my life!)

So, imagine my surprise when I was checking my humble stats, expecting to see that maybe 2 or three people have paid a visit to my site, and I saw that over 200 people had visited my site over the weekend! Happy days! Thanks to all who dropped in - feel free to stay a while and make your presence known!

On a totally different train of thought, Big Brother #5 kicked off last night. I love the challenge of the imposter - identical twins trying to pass themselves off as one person, without any communication between them! Should make for some interesting viewing - although I've promised myself that I won't get hooked this year. (We'll see how that goes!)

[AFL] Not happy, Jan

Well, my (football) weekend didn't go as planned. I think I got a measly 3 in my family's tipping competition, and to top it off, my team lost, and the team I detest (I'm not allowed to say hate) won. Pretty sucky weekend...at least we're playing Brisbane next weekend, so hopefully we should win pretty easy.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Ps Tommy Barnett

As I drove to Hills again last night (it only took 50 minutes this time), I was quite excited about hearing Ps Tommy preach. So after an amazing Islander presentation and worship, Ps Thomas Trask invited Ps Tommy to the stage to preach. Ps Tommy started off by saying how he always had to do something new at Hills, due to the fact that he'd preached there so many times.

So imagine my surprise when he launched into his "Multiplication & Dreams" sermon that I heard 4 years ago at Planetshakers?!

Don't get me wrong, it's a great message, but when he speaks about sharing something new and then launches in to what is at least a 4 year-old message?

Ps Thomas Trask (the President of the World Congress) is speaking tonight, but I'm going to Insight (young adults @ LCLC), so I won't be there, unfortunately.

I think that Ps Tommy is speaking again Saturday night, so maybe I'll go again...

Thursday, May 05, 2005

AOG National Conference & World Congress

Last night I went to the AOG National Conference & World Congress at Hillsong Church. It was amazing knowing that I was in the company of some of the most incredible pastors from all around the world.

The Chairman of the World Congress got up and introduced members of the International Executive and also members of the AG Executive (America's AOG). It's interesting to note that the AOG is not truly an international movement. The World Congress could be compared to a meeting of the Australian Christian Churches (ACC) over here. - Churches with different names, but same beliefs.

We were also introduced to the Pastor of New Life Church, in Baghdad, Iraq. He'd just flown in that day. Imagine that - starting a church in Baghdad!

Ps Brian spoke on Ps 23. He spoke about how it's a Psalm of PURPOSE - the Lord IS my shepherd, I SHALL NOT want...it's all about how we choose to see things. If we live with purpose, our perspective changes.

I'm planning on going again tonight, as Ps Tommy Barnett (from the Dream Centre in LA) is speaking. Last time I heard Ps Tommy speak was at Planetshakers a few years ago, and I loved it.

It took me an hour to drive to Hillsong last night - I left @ 5:30, and got there at 6:30. Luckily, I have friends there who saved me a seat :) Hopefully it shouldn't take as long tonight, but then again it might take longer, it being thursday night! I hate traffic.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Evangelical Blog Awards

They do exist! I started including some of these in my blogroll, but it's already getting rediculously large - so much so that I forget which ones I regularly read!

So, here are the winners of each category. Be sure to check them out.

Best Evangelical Teen Blog
To Be Least

Best Evangelical Group Blog
Dead Yet Living

Best Evangelical Youth Pastor Blog
Stu’s Rants

Best Evangelical Missionary Blog
Under The Acacias

Best Evangelical Blog-Humor
Rantings of a Lord of the Rings Fanatic

Best New Evangelical Blog
Amy’s Humble Musings

Best Evangelical Blog-Pastor
Mark D. Roberts

Best Evangelical Blog-Apologetics
Weapons of Warfare

Best Domestic Evangelical Blog (U.S.)
From The Morning

Best International Evangelical Blog
Tim Challies

Best Evangelical Blog-Ministry
21st Century Reformation

Best Evangelical Blog-Politics
La Shawn Barber

Best Designed Evangelical Blog
Tim Challies

Best Overall Evangelical Blog
Alpha and Omega Ministries, The Christian Apologetics Ministry of James R. White

People’s Choice Award (highest vote total overall, including nominations)
Alpha and Omega Ministries, The Christian Apologetics Ministry of James R. White

So, does attendance = engagement?

I discovered the blog of STU, a youth ministry/STUdent ministry in the US (well, that's my guess). Grant had discovered an interesting article in an online magazine that he found challenging.

It challenged me too...so here it is:

Attendance ≠ Engagement

I was reading in Youth Specialties new Magalog...which is kinda cool. It's got articles in the front, all the resources in the back.

Anyway - I'm reading this article and for the life of me I can't remember who wrote it but the first line slayed me. Don't mistake attendance with vulnerability or engagement. You can have a student who shows up every week and still no one knows them. You can have a student who makes it twice a month but is vulnerable and has lots of "off-line" contact with others and/or a mentor. That second student may just be more on the journey than the one who shows up every week.

More here

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Joke of the Day

What's a Hindu?

It lays iggs!

(Sorry! I laughed so much when I heard this that I had to share it!)


I've just been playing with the site lately - updated the "Links" section; the links have now been categorised, and added to. I'm also thinking of adding (in the links section), links to my favourite books and/or cds...

Monday, May 02, 2005

[AFL] Oops - Correction!

As Bruce so kindly pointed out, it was the Swans who played the Eagles, not the Crows, who were playing the Kangaroos.

I think my head was a bit fuzzy that day! I think I confused my SA home team with my NSW home team...hey, at least it was still another "bird" team, so my title still works :)