Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Anybody in Melbourne I seriously encourage you to get along to this, Mark and John are both brilliant speakers, and always have great stuff to say.
Hopefully you can read what it says, if not just click on it to enlarge or something. Anyways, great stuff on leadership from the Forge crew. Check it out.
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Good angle on the prodigal son story

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Mim writes some good stuff, really like this take on the well-known prodigal son. I love looking at these kind of Bible stories, which i've heard tons of times before, and seeing them through new eyes. Great stuff

Monday, November 28, 2005

The Dog a Saint!

You beauty! Yesterdays national draft has the whole of Tyabb buzzing! Thats right, our boy, the Sweene-Dog (Justin Sweeney), got drafted yesterday by the Sainters!

I was at cricket when we all heard, and everybody was absolutely stoked-phone's were going crazy ringing everybody else, all standing around the radio listening in to our mate stumble his way through his very first (of many by the looks of the publicity he's generating) interview.

And what's more there he is on the front page, and then again on page 3 of the Herald Sun! He even got an article in the Age!

The funny thing about it for me is that I was only talking to him Wednesday night, and there he was telling me he wasn't training at all, when in fact he'd been training away with the Sainters. Some sort of secrecy thing apparently!

No doubt you'll be hearing more about the Dog, and of course the fine breeding ground that is the Yabbie Pond, in the future. Good luck big fella!

Friday, November 25, 2005

Experiential Prayer Exercises

Experiential Prayer Exercises
Stumbled across this today I was wandering around the internet looking for ideas and inspirations for a bit of a worship time I'm organising. Surprisingly enough we won't do heaps of singing, so I always love different ideas like these.

The site itself doesn't give much explanation of the theology or understanding behind this type of prayer/worship, but thats cool. I know I'll steal some of their ideas

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Australian Volleyball Champions of the World!!!

Woo-hoo! After three seasons of trying, we finally got our hands on the Holy Grail of Mornington Volleyball Leauge-the B Grade premiership!

We only lost one game all season, when we mucked around a bit too much and lsot to the team that we played in the granny.

It was an epic battle, we took out the first set comfortably, faltered slightly and lost the second, then well and truly lost our way in the third. Tensions were high, everybody seemed to have an opinion as to what the problem was, but we just needed to put our hands up and say we just weren't playing well.

The reason we play so well together is because we piss-fart around so much, and we started to lose that in the 2nd and 3rd sets. I did my best captain's motivational speech, gave them the 'this is what we've played all year for' and said we should go out, go back to mucking around and we'd win the game.

Like any champion team, we rose to the challenge presented us, and came out and blitzed the 4th set. With a few lucky tip ins and Mark Schwarzer like diving saves from yours truly, we were headed to a tie-breaking 5th!

Both teams were tiring, but the strength and inner determination, the ANZAC spirit, the true grit that personifies Australian sport carried us through to a massive win! I was particularly stoked as on Championship point I was able to do what I pretty much haven't done the entire three seasons I've played volleyball-win a point with a big spike!

The ten person crowd went wild, and despite being dacked mid way through my victors speech, the night ended up a beauty! Now we've conquered B-grade volleyball, we need another obscure sport to take on next year-I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Titles of Jesus

The last two weeks at church (Huddle) we've been discussing the various different titles given to Jesus-and exploring how, if at all, they change, challenge, confirm, call into question any of our previous perceptions and understandings of Jesus. The 7 we looked at-which I think is reasonably definitive, but don't know, as it was given to me in class were: Messiah (Christ), Son of God, Son of Man, Word, Lord, Son of David and Lamb of God. Now I think of it, there's the Lion of Judah and some other OT ones that I know are floating in the back of my mind.

Anyway, we were discussing the relevance and meaning of each to us today. One that raised a bit of discussion was the title Son of David. First because its not actually true, in that Jesus does not actually have any direct ancestral heritage to David. The ancestral line is traced back through Joseph, who if we believe what the very next part of the Bible says, wasn't actually Jesus' father.

Despite this, it would have probably still been important for many Jewish listeners to hear that Jesus was here to fulfill that Kingly role of David, to continue on, but also fulfill that Jewish ancestry. But is it OK for the Bible writers/us to call him that if its not actually literally true? Are we OK with it just being a figure of speech?

The other issue we discussed was the relevance to us of this title. We all admitted that we did not feel it was particularly relevant to us right now-that it placed no real bearing on our understanding or experience of Jesus. Is it OK to almost ignore that title of Jesus? Or are we missing out on some profound theological insight by not engaging with it more fully?

U2 are coming to Melbourne!!

I'm fully stoked and will be doing whatever it takes to get myself some tickets to this gig! They are No 1 on my list of bands to see live, and if Ben Harper will get off his arse and get out here again I'll be a very happy man. I'm already knocking Xavier Rudd and John Butler Trio off the list at Pyramid Rock over New Years, where the might Grinners will also be playing. Then the White Stripes will be knocked from the list-providing funda allow for Big Day Out tickets! If only Antiskeptic were playing, I'd be satisfied to never see another band play live. That is until Live, Metallica and Fatboy Slim tour here next...

Friday, November 18, 2005

Speaking in Tongues

I can't believe I haven't even got around to posting about this show yet! I'm a massive fan of John Safran, and have been ever since the days of Not-the Sunscreen song and blowing cigarette smoke under Warnie's door to try and get him to lose his nicotine patch sponsorship. Then came John Safran vs God-one of my favourite TV shows for a long time.

Not sure if this one will be up to that standard, but its definitely got potential. Its basically just John and Father Bob, the most contankerous old priest I've ever seen-sitting around discussing the weeks news, with a spiritual twist, and getting various bizzaro guests in. Last week there was a hooker who had a Muslim dude marry her for half an hour so they could have sex, then divorce her. Kinda misses the point of the whole no-sex-before-marriage thing...

One of the funnier segments is where they get people from small cults/sects in to try and hook them up with single people from their same religion.

Anywho, check it out, its well worth a look. He always makes ya think, thats for sure!

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Very cool illusion

Very cool illusion
This is indeed a very cool illusion! Check it out!

Monday, November 14, 2005

Movember

Movember
Hehe, Movember-such a funny word and such a great concept! I wish it could be Beardvember and I'd be kicking arse!

Friday, November 11, 2005

Pointing to Jesus...

Have finally finished Tabor for the year!! Woo-hoo! And whats even better-I've got all of my essays in on time. One was about postmodernism and preaching, and the other was critiquing the Christology (stuff about Jesus) in the Da Vinci Code. I wanted to do Jesus Walks by Kanye West-but didn't think I'd easily be able to find other references so went for Da Vinci.

My closing paragraph, which again came up when discussing contemporary portrayals of Jesus and Jesus-related themes, was basically about what I'm calling 'pointing to Jesus'.

There is a paragraph in the middle of Da Vinci, when Teabing and Langdon are revealing to Sophie the 'truth' about Mary, Jesus and the Holy Grail etc. Sophie says that she has never heard any of these stories about Mary-that the ideas are all new to her. Teabing replies 'Magdalene's story has been shouted from the rooftops for centuries in all kinds of metaphors and languages. Her story is everywhere once you open your eyes'

See I think its kinda similar with Jesus. Jesus is absolutely everywhere in our society, in movies, music, TV-all over popular culture. His story is told everyday through nature, through the loving care of a nurse who cares for old people in a home, through anybody when they stop and reach out to the poor, who talks to the loner kid at school, anybody thats unconditionally loves and puts the needs of others first-through people all the time-in an absolutely myriad ways.

So perhaps it is our job as Christians to point out to people the Jesus they meet everyday, to open their eyes to see Jesus through movies like Fight Club, Unleashed, the Matrix, Remember the Titans or whatever, to open their eyes to the Jesus they meet in the poor and marginalised, to encourage them to name the Jesus they inherently connect with in nature. Instead of trying to tell people about Jesus-we just need to open their eyes to the Jesus they can already see.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Belonging to God?

Recently I got pointed to the Princeton Theological Seminary for Youth Ministry website, and particularly their free audio journal CD they send out to interested parties.

I'm always up for free stuff, and this looked pretty quality, so I thought I'd give it a look. Particularly good stuff that will make the many hours i spend in the car a little more useful.

The theme of this issue is Belonging to God, which sounded interesting. So obviously it came up a few times amongst the little sermons and interviews, that we do indeed belong to God. The phrase 'the question is not who are we, but whose are we, is whats important to young people' came up a number of times.

I don't know if its just me, or if I'm thinking about it the wrong way-but I really don't like the idea of 'belonging' to God, as if God owns me or something? I would like to think that I am in some way every day giving my life over to God, surrendering my life to His will (something I am still learning so so much about) but I still don't like the idea of being owned by God. Maybe its just a semantics (words) issue?

They make some good points about encouraging young people to not define themselves by what they wear, who they hang out with, how much money they have etc (stuff that totally applies to adults as well) but to define themselves by the fact they are a child of God-made in God's image. That is a metaphor I'm a lot more comfortable with, but still need to unpack a bit.

I dunno, do we belong to God? What do you think?

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Why men hate church

Rick Warren's Ministry Toolbox
The fact that I even followed a link to this site indicates that I am wasting time I do not have, so I'll read into this one a little more and respond after all my essays are in-which will hopefully be soon!

Seems like a pretty decent read. Its funny cos at the moment the Huddle has the oposite problem-we don't have any chicks! But we're working on it!