It's a holiday...

if only this was me...

Just like the Hobart Christmas Pageant... lame but bigger.

this was my sweet ride...


I ate some of these...

This is my "what am I eating?" face

washed it down
Campos coffee is the nectar of the Gods.


It's time... to vote

...for a new profile pic

Clean shaven

the bearded burglar...


Informed Voting

I'm on holidays in Sydney at the moment and it's imposible to get away from the election. In my quiet time this morning I felt the need to encourage some first time voters who read here to be informed and vote responsibly.

I also found the Australian Christian Lobby's website this morning. It's quite good and easy to use. I like it because it makes an honest attempt to present the views of all the parties without resorting to bias and empty rhetoric. The disappointing down side is that the Greens didn't reply to the survey sent out to all the political parties and so they don't have their policies on the site. As a work around the ACL did this assessment of their policies which you can download here.


Pryderi's public prang....s

"I was actually wondering if I could get a lift home with one of you..." said David Norman Jones while sitting in my lounge room. Damon David and I had just finished our meeting.

"...Pryderi's got the car bogged."

"You're joking it hasn't even been wet!?" I said.

"Yes he's on his P plates..." David's voice trailed off.

So Damo, David and I set out for Mt Nelson to get the car unbogged...

How'd he manage that? Note the driveway is at the level of the mud guard

After some ingenuity and digging we rigged a small ramp on one side drove the car forward then made another ramp over the rocks and David drove the car back up onto the driveway... easy.

"It's not the first time he's done something either" volunteered David.

"Mind if I get a couple of pictures for my blog then?" I asked, "I'll name and shame him for you."

"Certainly," said David eagerly with a dangerous Jones like glint in his eye, "I'll show you where he hit the wall."


How I voted...

This picture is not a reflection on how I voted. Rather it's just the first Duncan Kerr advertisement of any kind I've seen this campaign and thought it was picture worthy.

I voted early this year cause I'll be away. I take voting pretty seriously and make an honest attempt to think though the issues. It annoys me that people often vote along the same lines as their parents without thinking the issues through. "Uh I vote Labor cause my parents did" or worse still "I just donkey vote cause I don't care". Both these attitudes I find frankly pretty irresponsible. In Australia we're pretty big on whinging but pull up short when it comes to acting on something.

Being an informed voter (I use the term broadly) isn't difficult. Usually I talk to a few of my green, lefty and righty friends about what they think the issues are. I try to watch a bit of TV (I watched the Howard-Rudd debate and also their address to Christians early in the campaign) I then make my decision taking as many of the issues into account as I can (including my Christian world view).

Having said that last time I voted I succeeded in annoying most of my friends. While I'm not going to post now on who I actually voted for, I will say that my vote probably will again, succeed in annoying nearly all of my friends. What I can say is I gave it my best shot.


You got questions?

Mark Driscoll has answers. Check out the top 20 questions people would like to see him answer. You too can also vote for your favorite. He's doing a sermon series on the top 9 some time next year. There are some really good questions like;

Why do you make jokes about mormon missionaries, homosexuals, trenchcoats wearers, single men, vegans, emo kids and then expect these groups to come to know God in the same sermon?
The battle cry of the early reformers was "scripture alone!" Yet today, the Reformation has resulted in thousands of denominations, each with the correct interpretation of the Bible. Who's right?
It's good stuff head on over and check it out.


It's a party!

Considering the lack of effort put into my party the result was certainly worth while. Jonny and I had an awesome time. We played/attempted to play AC/DC, U2, Ben Harper, Crowded House and others that I can't remember.

Dave Gross* (above and below) sang. Here's a view from where I was playing. I took these pics during practice.

Pos shredded on guitar...

Jonny who ripped the bass

Me of course on drums... AND for the first time ever I managed to break a stick. Man I am hardcore!

Nathaniel joined us later on on keys. A special shout out goes to my other mate David Mackles who came earlier in the evening and did some easy going Crowded House numbers. Late into the night introverted Benny and Pos were also singing up the front**, although I'm not sure what...

Here's proof I'm eighteen.... thanks Erica for the awesome little cake.

Thanks Jerome for the cricket set. It should be useful at Jane next year.

Thanks also to all the people who came along I had a great time. Thanks also to all the people who gave me gifts for my birthday and wished me a happy day. You guys are grouse

*AKA Pablo's Dad's brother... connections.
** They weren't drunk


Speaking of my party...

If you haven't got an invitation please accept my apologies. You are welcome to come. It's this Saturday night over at Jonny's house. We've called it Jonny's 40th and Jolly's 18th. Him being approximately 40 and me being approximately 18... that and I never had an 18th, and he's never had a 40th.

We're going to have a live band which you can be a part of if you feel the urge on the night. Anyway should be a good time. Probably won't be stacks of people there but it would be great to see you there. More details chuck us an email or check facebook.

Peace out.


I need a holiday...

I'm pretty close to reaching the end of my abilitiy to function humanly speaking. I don't mean that I'm tired but I'm becoming increasingly absent minded and lacking in focus. Also my relational skills are beginning to fray around the edges.

I also just realised I double booked myself (for my own birthday party of all things). I'm finding it difficult to concentrate on actually engaging in meaningful conversation without being distracted. It's been a long year and I'm looking forward to a break. More prayer, less doing and more being.

Bring on holidays next Thursday.


Lite on...

That's how I describe my blog more recently. I've recently been busy working on administration including an AFES Area Committee Review of Sam and the FOCUS ministry. I've also been thrown the responsibility of acting secretary for the AFES Area Committee.

I've reached the realisation that administration is a real sink for sucking away time. I've spent too much time this year doing admin. The problem is I find admin really easy to do as I'm a pretty organised bloke and enjoy oragnising things. Compounding this glut of admin is the fact I've been asked to organise the MTS Conference next year. On the upside I'll get a cool title... maybe "chief duder".... "Head honcho"... "Director".

I've also been working on a sermon on Micah 5 for the NTE Conference. Rather than write a formulaic dead sermon though I've turned it into another talk that I can use for FOCUS or teenagers next year. It specifically uses the frame of heroes to talk about the Gospel.

All this has meant that haven't had much time to write anything specific for my blog. I've got heaps of ideas... including a post on Christians and arrogance inspired by my anonymous friend Jennifer. Another day...


For my birthday...

I was lucky enough to get the following for which I am very thankful

From my parents apple bluetooth mighty mouse and integrates perfectly with my laptop.

From my other parents an apple bluetooth keyboard which after a quick download also integrated perfectly with my laptop.

Now my desk looks something like this... you'll see the extra screen that I attatch when I'm working or browsing at my desk.


Hot Tub*

Part of the new look FOCUS will be having Committee meetings that rock. Today was no exception as you can see from the photos. We spent time looking over 2007 student year, learned the history of Christian student groups, examined the new Mission and Strategy document, and looked at some very exciting plans for 2008 and of course there was the...

There are more shocking photos on facebook as well.

We also looked at a video to introduces us to our new associate staff worker Luke Hansard... it's worth a look for Shem's guest appearance.

*Thanks to the Denholms for use of their house and hot tub.


It's my birthday... cart

It seems a bit funny but I went to a mates late birthday bash this morning. His birthday was back in August and it's taken a while to get a booking for the go carts. Mind you it was probably one of the best birthdays I've had. It was an absolute blast.

This stuff isn't for the faint hearted. This is me on the top corner. I had a pretty specky high speed crash later in the day a little further round this corner.

me again... you can get up to 100km/h coming into this corner... not sure I was that fast.

A few of the people along for the drive...

For those wondering about the price.... It's well worth it. About half the cost of a speeding ticket and way, way more fun.


Mission and Strategy 5.0

Over to the students...

Community (Students)
Community is a vitally important part of FOCUS’ ministry, expressing that we are a loving spiritual family united to Christ. While staff led events will contribute to this, it remains the primarily the responsibility of the members of FOCUS with particular emphasis on the Student Committee. The Committee, in consultation with the staff, is responsible for formally organising community activities over each semester. These events serve to unite the many varied groups and people within FOCUS. Individual members are also encouraged to informally organise regular social events.

Prayer (Students)
FOCUS looks to prayer as vitally important, not just as a devotional activity but as the cornerstone to all that we do. The student committee accepts leadership and the primary responsibility for this aspect of the ministry. The Staff have the responsibility to model this. Regular member-led prayer meetings are held throughout the semester with a focus on encouraging students to work hard at personal prayer as a discipline.

Discipleship (Students)
FOCUS values discipleship. Our discipleship is chiefly done on an informal basis relying on the strength of a functional efficient student committee. At the same time individuals are expected to take responsibility for their personal Christian growth seeking out the staff when needed. When called upon, the staff are responsible for encouraging and empowering the students for this task. Student Committee members are particularly encouraged to take part in this process through establishing mentoring relationships with new students as well as working in peer-to-peer relationships.

*Edit added AFES Doctrinal Basis


Mission and Strategy 4.0

The shared strategy...

Evangelism (Shared)
Our evangelism is concerned with the clear, truthful and loving proclamation of the Bible as the Word of God to all students, both local and international. In doing so we seek to evangelise the lost and present a rigorous, consistent and coherent Christian worldview. This functions in also building students’ confidence in their faith and in the Bible as the word of God. This is achieved as staff lovingly, but boldly defend Christianity from the attacks of the secular world. Individual FOCUS members are encouraged in friendship and one-to-one evangelism, with the staff taking responsibility to lead by example.

Support (Shared)
It is vital that FOCUS is properly supported through prayer, finance, administration, and local church commitment to the FOCUS vision. Staff and the Area Committee accept the primary responsible for the administration of FOCUS mission as well fundraising. Students are expected to participate when called upon and where possible seek opportunities to promote the FOCUS’ mission and strategy both formally and informally in their local church context.


Mission and Strategy 3.0

Following on from here and here I'm going to gradually post up all of the detail from the FOCUS Mission and Strategy Document.

Bible teaching (Staff)
Bible Teaching is primarily the responsibility of the staff at FOCUS. We desire to see our mission achieved through systematic, faithful, preaching and teaching of the Bible to all people. This comes about through staff exposition of the Bible on a weekly basis with an emphasis on working through whole books, allowing the Bible to set the agenda, and modelling confidence in the word of God. The culmination of this goal is a weeklong conference in the middle of each University year (MYC) and the National Training Event (NTE) at the end of the University year. In addition individuals are encouraged to be regularly reading the Bible and attending church.

Training (Staff)
FOCUS values training as vitally important to Christian growth at University. We encourage students to cultivate a tertiary understanding of the Bible and Christian doctrine. To facilitate this, the FOCUS staff form groups of members for the purpose of training in different aspects of the Christian life. There is an emphasis on the staff equipping members with the skills to be faithful to their local church, as well as becoming discerning citizens who live in the world.


Assorted stuff

I created a birthday event on facespace for myself and Jonny. We are calling it Jolly's 18th and Jonny's 40th.

I lost my/Christine's ipod.

I am angry.

I am taking it easy today.


7 to 12

Grade 7... Notice the massive lump of hair in the center and the part down the side. I think I look quite cheeky in this one.

Grade 8... Not a bad one (but still the bowl cut)

Grade 9... Eeek what's with the tie
Grade 10...and again

Grade 11... This is what my hair would look like if it was long

Grade 12... and again errgh



Technorati is a popular site that ranks and searches blogs and all things internet. Here are some of the statistics

My blog

Christine's Blog

Pablo's Blog (crazily popular)



Very very clever


and then...

Housing inspection...
"No honestly really we've been looking after the place"


They've arrived

25 boxes of joy... and it only took over 5 months... The irony was that it came at 7:30am this morning a half hour earlier than they said. It has been a happy day off for me unpacking.

It was a reminder that I am married to a woman who still has lots of clothes... still it will be very nice to not see the same things over and over again.