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Two Christmas gifts.
some superb coffee beans from a good friend, and some liquor soaked cherries in dark Belgian chocolate......from family....

Great free worship loop

I have actually had and used this one for a while....but now 'Eleven 72' are offering it for free.

Head over there and download it...for the best possible price.

It is a nice loopable background mpeg....great for fast moving uplifting praise songs.

2008 reflections

My family has been a continued source of blessing for me.
My wife continues to become the best cook she can be, cooking some incredible food, and demonstrating her spiritual gift of hospitality.
My son is growing into a great, well balanced, loving son.
My daughter is growing into a beautiful little girl, and this year I took her to swimming lessons, and saw her develop the courage to start to swim on her own.
2008 has truly been the best year of our church life
We have merged with Inglewood Church of Christ and become Inglewood Community Church
We have started meeting at the Inglewood Civic Centre, which has seen us become a more visible presence in the community, and start to attract visitors on a consistent basis....People know where we are, and when we meet. We run programs such as the Artisan Markets, which are an incredible outlet for community presence.

I have learnt how to use Photoshop and Sony Vegas, two great high end programs which have helped me become more efficient and professional in my work.

Personal prayer, devotion and holiness.....these are aspects of my life I continue to work on.

Rick Warren

When people from both sides of politics are villifying you, its probably a sign you are doing the right thing.
Rick Warren is clearly a biblical/conservative minister....yet Obama has picked him to pray a prayer of blessing on his presidency. I doubt Warren voted for Obama......
This quote from Warren from the LA Times speaks volumes for the wisdom of the man. I am so glad he is representing us in the media...

"I happen to love Democrats and Republicans," he told the gathering. "And for the media's purpose, I happen to love gays and straights. . . . Who ever came up with the idea that you have to agree with everybody on everything in order to love them?"Warren added: "And you know what my attitude is: You don't have to see eye to eye to walk hand in hand, and you can disagree without being disagreeable" (Source)

Vegas Vs Yosemite

A few years back a few good friends and I went to Sacremento to study the incredible ministry of churches under Paul Borden's leadership.
After the 14 day study tour, Wayne Field, Peter White and myself went on a driving tour, including such spots as Vegas, Yosemite National Park, Las Angelas, and a lot of the US in between.....
When I got to Vegas, and Wayne and I went on a tour, in our rented Chrysler 2am in the morning, I turned to Wayne and said,

"After seeing what God created for our enjoyment in Yosemite it's a disappointment to see what man created for our enjoyment in Vegas."

Wayne told me that U2 filmed their clip, "I still haven't found what I am looking for" there....which just about sums it up.

Psalm 100

"The source of confident joy and joyful confidence originates in the fundamental acknowledgement that "the Lord, he is God. It is He who hath made us and not we ourselves; we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture." Turning from divine praise to human dignity, the Psalmist celebrates the good news that we are neither alone nor autonomous. He confesses that God fashioned every single person, and that therefore every human being enjoys an inherent worth that can never be earned or even lost, and that therefore we enjoy His bountiful care. Many people, of course, do not view the world or people this way, and herein lies a great divide between two very different ways of experiencing life itself."

Mark Driscoll has a bad day...but learns some lessons

This is a really good post.
Pastor Mark Driscoll had a really bad attendance at Mars Hill Church, a mega church in Seattle. He is a edgy young pastor, with a influential ministry. He writes on his church blog about a recent service when it snowed heavily in Seattle (you may have seen it on the news) and it affected attendance negatively....

"I preached to 80 people at the first service in a room that seats 1300, and the best attended of the four services today was about 250 people....."

He has some pretty frank things to say... (Driscoll frank? Who would have thought!)

"Those who see it as a job are the first to call in and cancel their duties, not show up, dog it, or leave early. Those who see their service at Mars Hill as a calling go beyond the call of duty to cover for everyone else"

You can read the rest here

Inglewood Christmas Reflections '08

What an awesome Christmas Service we had.

The best Christmas Service I have ever been too....ever.

It started off on Wednesday really when Ernie, Bev, Q, Eliot, Jenny and Les and myself set up the 'winter wonderland' at the Inglewood Civic Centre.

We have always wanted to 'black out' the church and do this, but never been physically able to, until this year.

We 'blacked out' the centre by using black curtains and black paper.

Then we installed temporary fairy lights, roping them over the walls, and then strategically placed on the stage.

We installed a great nativity scene, complete with wise men, Mary and Jesus..using a reverse projecter, the congregation saw a stary night scene as a backdrop and fairy lights as stars, as well as mood lighting.

We used some great media, including loops of candles and other Christmassy type stuff.
People from overseas need to realise that for us Aussies, Christmas is normally sun, beach and prawns.....The service was designed to provoke a different response....

Awe, wonder and excitment for the kids...and we handed out battery powered candles for the children, which they got to keep.

That is the physical setup covered...pretty much, except for the fact we also had the service projected into the foyer where there is a huge LCD screen, so it created excitment from when people walked into the building.

Then Eliot and the Soul Jam Choir kicked off the service with a rocking version of "Rock a my Saviour"...which was a great feel for the rest of the service which included contemporary Christmas songs, mixed with rocked up traditional well as a exemplary item of "O Holy Night" (well done girls!!!)
I spoke on the importance of reflection, what have we done this year, using the lyrics from Lennon's song, "So this is Christmas, and what have you done, another year over..."
I spoke about the nativity story, and used various scriptures...but mostly talked about how the nativity was only the start...and Jesus ministry did not really begin until 30 years later. I gave testimony to how Jesus and His life inform and provoke my own, provide meaning and purpose for my life. It was a short...(hopefully) humorous message, designed to provoke people to reflect on where their life is going, not matter what their spiritual journey.

We finished the service off with a rocking version of "we wish you a Merry Christmas" and as I shook hands at the door, a huge crowd of happy people, who kicked off their Christmas Day festivities in the best possible way exited. It was a hugely enjoyable service.

However....probably the most exciting news was the offering we took up. There was some concern that we would not raise the necessary $1500 to build one well.

We should not have worried.
People gave more than enough to build two wells.

Our people were generous...and loving. A great Christmas gift to the world.

It's something....but it aint coffee.......YUCK!

The day before the day before the day

John Finkelde mentioned on his blog that he loves the 23rd of December....and wondered if he is the only one...he isn't...I do too!

Isn't the anticipation of something just as good as actually obtaining it?
Has not God designed us to be chase after?

I believe He has.

Last night I took the family to the 'Nativity' scene/drama in the city. It was awesome. Geoff Woodward (spelling?) from Metro Church and the evavenscent (spelling2?) Michael Battersby led the thousands of people gathered there in carol singing...I am friends with Colin, Michael's brother, and we often joke that despite their obvious similarities, Michael is the outgoing one...he is! Colin is an awesome worship leader, but their style is quite different.

Michael and his team did a great job.

Then Ted Bull (ABC) basically read the story from the bible, interspersed with drama, real camels, and carols. mention of Santa....candy canes or anything else.
Just the beauty of the nativity story, presented in a contemporary manner to thousands of non church folk...

What a blessing.....

There is a lot of 'Grinchness' around this time of year, let us not be among the green headed monsters....Let us instead celebrate this awesome time of year, an opportunity to reflect, to share our faith, to share our lives, to celebrate with famiy.....

I believe in a God who is exuberant, creative, fun, positive, visionary, celebratory...a God who commands His people to party...COMMANDS THEM!!!

Let us throw off those things that bind us..and Celebrate the King's Birthday.


We assume that we rule our lives, but we can't even hold our breath.

I miss my dad

I miss my dad.

He was a non communicative, dysfunctional father.....who I hardly knew.....

but I miss him like crazy.

I wish I could ring him up and ask him about how to change an oil filter, even though I know how.

I wish I could play squash with him, and go easy on him, because when I started thrashing him, he no longer wanted to play.....

I wish he was here to give presents to my kids...because he was GREAT at that.....

If your dad is still alive, no matter what he is like...don't take him for granted.

Merry Elves from the Edwards family!

The gospel driven church and why people may hate us....

This is an interesting blog....
here he defends Rick Warren and makes some good points.....

"No stranger to getting flamed by church people indignant over his writings and methods, Warren is now getting flamed by some very vocal supporters of President-elect Obama because he (Warren) is pro-life and against gay marriage. Shocker, I know."

"Here's the thing: Warren is not saying anything outrageous for a Christian minister. He is simply, as most evangelical Christians do, saying that babies should get to live and that homosexual behavior is sin. That he is getting branded a radical hatemonger for these things should tell us a lot about the culture we live in, which -- PAY ATTENTION HERE -- doesn't care if you're a cool, goatee-sporting, social justice loving, Obama voting Christian. If you simply follow the Bible's counsel about life and sin, you're Hitler." (Source)

It was really interesting to me that Obama mentioned 'gays' specifically in his presidential speach.

This is not a gay bashing site....there are plenty of them around, and this is not one of them.

But a Christian minister should stand up for something, namely that the Bible is true...and God does not like sin........Rick Warren is probably one of the sharpest Christian minds of our generation, and when interviewed, I have not seen him slip up. I dont think he did in this context either....but what he said may very well be offensive.

Carols this Saturday Night

Hi all who read this blog!

If you are looking for a Carols this Saturday night, and live in Perth or close enough....we would love to see you at ours, we are holding it outside in the open area at the Inglewood Civic Centre, 895 Beaufort St Inglewood (opposite IGA)

Christmas Carols Saturday 20th December 7pm for a 7.30pm start

Inglewood Civic Centre Forecourt 895 Beaufort St

(Carpark in the tenth st carpark off Beaufort St)

Bring a chair!!

Christmas Day Service Thursday 25th
9am Sharp till 10am Sharp Inglewood Civic Centre Beaufort St Bob Daniels Centre

Rove's Cousin to read Channel Nine News a move destined to upset the status quo, Channel Nine news have released details of their next sports reporter.....

here he is.....

I rarely watch TV but...

Why do we make this statement, "I rarely watch TV but I saw this show on how Brooke split up with Taylor etc etc...'
What is it within us that makes us apologise for watching TV...or feign guilt about it?
You don't hear people say, "I rarely go to the movies, but I just happened to catch Hugh and Nicole and she was so wooden...."

All things in moderation I reckon.
At present, with the non ratings rubbish on, thats pretty easy! But there is still some good stuff on. For me, Prison Break and Heroes. Lately I have got addicted to both of them, sometimes recording them when I am too bombed to stay up that late. Also 'Top Gear' (the UK version) on Monday nights.
And....with the 'Spicks and Specks Christmas Special' being essential viewing...enjoy your zone out moderation.

Church Leadership Team

I have an excellent Church Leadership Team...I suppose if they were terrible I would probably not post about them, but they are I can.

Last night we held our first ever Leadership Team Meeting for our new church, and it was a significant time. We decided on some key things, which reflect our inherant values as a church.
I was so encouraged.

I shared with the leadership team that I need three things from them.

1. That they keep pushing me to keep my eye on the big vision, and give me freedom to lead.
2. That they be my chief set of cheerleaders.
3. That they set good boundaries and keep me accountable for what I achieve

There have been years gone by when things have not been so good. Our church is already experiencing some fruit from good leadership, and this team is setting us up for more health.

Yellow and Crack

Well Richmond Football Club have drafted Ben......(after saying there is no way they would)

I actually am glad. I hope that he is aided in his journey back, and does his parents proud.
All of us have made mistakes, its just that Ben got caught...and he continued on with it....

But ultimately I suspect it wont be his much vaunted issues with drugs that bring him down but his hamstrings....and the feral Tigers fans.....

Awesome Sunday at church

We had a great day at church on Sunday.
Some things I can tell you about, some things best kept from huge public audience that read this blog (!)

A great time of worship, the band sounded great, and their was a real sense of freedom there, led ably by Eliot, who allowed space and freedom....great!

A good story of two told...and a good message on meditating on scripture, you can download it from our church website

About 10 visitors, including some real special people, which I can't go into here....but I am hoping they stick around, because together, we could make some awesome differences in our community....

The air conditioning kicked the 38 degree day out of the park...something we have not had the luxury of before....

Lets build a well

This year I had the sense that it was time for our church to try and do something special on Christmas Day.

We want to truly enjoy Christmas, and it is very enjoyable to give to those who go without.

A friend of mine, Steve Mc Kinnon, heads up Tear Fund, and he suggested we build a well....what a awesome idea!

You can read about it here.

Once inspired, go and build your own well...or even spend anything from $5 upwards on a very useful gift!

Blogging, Facecrack and relationships

Its not all bad you know.

Blogging has given me a great outlet, it has introduced me to a whole heap of people and also ideas that have helped a lot. It has been an avenue to internet resources, mult-media, the latest thinking and good books.

Facecrack....ooops...I mean Facebook...has given me access to relationships with a whole heap of people. The most valuable aspect of it is when I also have a 'real world' relationship with those I am interacting with online. In some notable cases it has actually really helped as I have tried to share and deepen relationships and conversations with people that although I see them 'face to face' we dont always get the chance to talk about spiritual matters. This has been really valuable even in the last 24 hours as I was able to articulate something concillitory which may have actually been a problem with someone who is on a faith journey.

I think the key with healthy online relationships is that they have some basis 'offline' as well. It may be too easy for there to be little accountability or reality undergirding the relationship if it only takes place in internet forums or blog comment lines. I am not saying this is always the case, but even those friendships I have developed with some overseas pastors, formed on the basis of mutual experiences, are relationships I have an innate desire to develop 'offline' as well.

While I don't like anonymous comments on this blog, because I think if you are going to say something, take accountability for it, I do allow them, because I hope the interaction can grow to the point where it allows for a certain vulnerability.

As our society and culture is already well and truly 'online', Pastors, those in the relationship and influence areas, need to have an online 'web 2' type presence. As people work more, and have less time free, Pastors need to be available (within their own boundaries of course) to interact with people, as people today are interacting.

(This post was formulated after a discussion with my good friend, Michael Bullard)

Only in America...

With apologies to all my American friends.....but over this side of the pond...this is nuts....

"A US gun company will market a pistol to elderly Americans that will be subsidised by the government in the same way as a wheelchair or walking frame."

Enjoying Christmas

How would it be if you put on a beautiful birthday party for your son.
All the invite his friends, you wrap his presents, you prepare wonderful food.

Then after the day is finished, you turn to your son and you say, "I hate your birthday, its such a hassle".....

enjoy the day....enjoy Jesus' birthday...its fantastic!

List of free Christmas Multi-Media

Here is the multi-media I have done up so far for the Christmas Season, feel free to use it....let me know if you do.

Nativity Loop

Nativity Countdown

The Word Came (illustration on Jesus's coming)

Merry Christmas Countdown

The bottom two you can find on this blog, if you want to preview the top two, I suggest you go to

to see the others.....

Sunday Times....sigh....part two

After his fellow journalist at the Sunday Times, Jay Clark, was compelled to apologise in this weeks Sunday Times for making a mistake last week about Mark Harveys contract length....

(Bad journalism) one might have thought that Kim Hagdorn would get it right.

Apparently even though he is paid full time, and apparently studies and knows both West Aussie footy sides, you would think he might get the players numbers right, especially when talking about those numbers specifically!

"Other attractive numbers on offer to Fremantle's eight new recruits include Matthew Carr's No.9 and departed ruckman Robbie Warnock's 21, made more famous by respected former big man Justin Longmuir." (source)

mmmm....good one dork.

Anticipation and I love Sunday afternoons in Inglewood...

There is a lot of great things about being a pastor and involved in a church.
One of them is Sunday afternoon, relaxing after the glow of a great church service. The band did a great job this morning and we kicked off our new series, "how to enjoy Christmas"....I spoke on the 'Relly Bash" to enjoy Christmas with your relatives...My two main points were to create margins for yourself (boundaries) and also to invite Jesus to the party. Jesus first miracle was to turn 160 gallons of water into the best wine a 7 day wedding party. He wants to be invited to the party....

Then...after that...back home with number one son as wife and daughter are off to a birthday party and we did what dads and their sons do...ate some smallgoods and a good loaf of bread....he is playing 'sponge bob' and I am reading the paper...aaah.


This is good....could use this for something.....

Mark is Mr Busy

Lot on this week...hence not many postings.....
Getting ready for Christmas, January and AGM in February.
Budgets, multi media, Angus Buchan, Christmas services, holidays, fixing car...(oil, coolant, sparks, tyres)

and that is just the last two days.....

Dan Kimball nails it

Has the 'missional movement' been given enough time to produce fruit?
Dan Kimball appears to be getting impatient as he writes,

"Small, indigenous churches are getting lots of attention, but where's the fruit?

I hope I am wrong. For the past few years, I have been observing, listening, and asking questions about the missional movement. I have a suspicion that the missional
model has not yet proven itself beyond the level of theory. Again, I hope I am wrong"

The article he writes appears to me to ask some serious and compelling questions, comparing the growth of 'attractional' churches with the apparent lack of growth of those pursuing alternate methods of church.

"We all agree with the theory of being a community of God that defines and organizes itself around the purpose of being an agent of God's mission in the world. But the missional conversation often goes a step further by dismissing the "attractional" model of church as ineffective. Some say that creating better programs, preaching, and worship services so people "come to us" isn't going to cut it anymore. But here's my dilemma—I see no evidence to verify this claim."

I wholeheatedly agree that the measure of a method of 'church' needs to be, is it growing and seeing people move from non Christ follower to fully devoted disciple. Maybe I am a late adopter, or maybe its time for some serious re-evaluations of those who are the self appointed 'evaluators'


The word came Christmas Multi-media

Here is a shortish presentation I have made up based around John 1 and Philipians 2

You can download a quality copy by right clicking here
Please let me know if and how you use it.

Family Dessert Night

In our family we are trying to create memories for our children that will sustain them with joy as they look back at their childhood.

One inititive we have taken up recently is family dessert night. When guests come over, you often make up a nice dessert....Family Dessert night is when we make up a beautiful one, just for our family to enjoy.

This week it was Rollover Pavlova time....

I am so blessed!!!

Scheduling in ministry

This is so hard! Trying to get 5 different people together for an important meeting, in a volunteer capacity....around Christmas time!


Christmas Countdown

This is a countdown I have made up for our Christmas service. In my own copy I have included our church logo, and also the song from Jars of Clay "when love comes down"

You can get a copy, without the logo and song by right clicking here.

Please let me know if you use it, and how....

Christmas Lunch

Mmmmmmm...what do you eat for Christmas Lunch?
Today I went to some friends house and 'dedicated' their child in their backyard. Beautiful sunshine in their Freo backyard, lovely drink food etc.

Number one son is a real gourmet the age of 7. Straight past all the standard kids table and onto the I have some of this Gouda, and some Dutch smokehouse....a decent slice of cheese later, and he was checking out the olives and other condiments.

What does he want for Christmas lunch? None of that ham or pork dad, I want a seafood buffet, crab, crayfish, prawns and fish dad......

sigh..... :)

The standard of beauty

Watching Mark Driscoll's series on "The Peasant Princess" at the moment.
One thing he keeps saying, which really hit home for me, was this....'your wife should be the standard of beauty'...however she looks...that is beautiful...

Not hard when you have a pretty wife like I do....but in this image saturated society, a great reminder.

Free Christmas Multi Media

Here is an excellent example of some of the work of Muddy River Media.
I am going to use this in two weeks time, when I talk about dealing with the relatives at Christmas time. You can download this for free from

Financial Crisis...what crisis?

I realise this post comes from a position of a fair amount of forgive me in advance but....

Since the crisis has kicked in our family...

1. has had its monthly mortgage greatly reduced, meaning we have maintained the level of repayment, but are seriously eating into the principle, with the promise of further cuts to come

2. Our petrol bill has been reduced by a third, I got petrol today for 1.08, when last month I was paying up to $1.55

3. We are receiving $2000 from our new best friend, Kevin Rudd, which will pay for our holiday next July

What concerns me
Every government in the world is instituting massive public works projects, including China. This is not good for our long term environmental goals
Seniors who are dependent upon their Super are suddenly discovering their net worth is halved or worse....
Young people who have been full of optimism and courage about their future, and thus were willing to dream, may now have to reassess their life goals.

why is it...some rambles....

that churches with 'Grace' in their title are normally anything but...

that people think a version of the scriptures which has been categorically proved to be one of the most the one they insist using...

that some folk insist that a song written in the 1800's is somehow more holy than those written in 2008.....

that some who insist the church be tolerant....then are very intolerant of the church....

that sometimes people's selfishness riles me...when I struggle with selfishness....

that I encourage people to show faith...but struggle with courage to follow through on my convictions....and be bold.....

Free church media Worship House Media

These guys are awesome....and funny.
They are giving away a free piece of media in December, as they did last year.
Good stuff at the best possible price!!

Worship House Media

Kids celebration service this Sunday

should be a blast....sausage sizzle afterwards...see you there!!

Sunday Times Bias and Crap journalism

Jay Clark....take a enter the race for the newly announced and very prestigious Markedly award for crap journalism...and bias against Freo...
Jay writes in this mornings Sunday Times...

" the focus this summer under out-of-contract coach Mark Harvey was not making the top eight or winning the premiership, but rather playing to potential, and winning as many games as possible. "

Ummmm Jay...your a dork!! And seeking to whiteant the the rest of the WA Media...

Mark Harvey actually has a 3 year contract from 2007....which takes him up till 2010..

There is however one underperforming coach who led his side to a 15th finish...and a lets win at all costs to society mentality...who is out of contract at the end of 2009....

Axeheads dont float

Spoke on Elisha this morning from 2 Kings 6...

got an axe on the front stage and a big plastic crate full of water.
the axe did not float....mmmmm....

Used it throughout the message as an illustration that God can do the unexpected, the unnatural, the supernatural...we should not limit God to our own experience, or even natures laws.

I reckon if people can remember one thing during the week from the message, which is an encouragement, a blessing...something that challenges and changes them...that is good.

My favourite Saturday...

I love living where I do....and here is one reason why.

Wake up,
need to help beloved clean the house, she is in one of her cleaning moods...and the whole family gets caught up in the clean-a-thon....which is good...

Now.....the good part...
off to Lawleys for a loaf of divine Ciabata bread, and a lovely Danish for number one son....

Then down to the Barrista championships to see Jasper produce some stunningly good coffee...using his own blends ...( friend...2nd best in WA!! )

Back to my abode, pour myself the third flat white for the day...a long one this time, smear some butter on the bread....relax, read the some of the Test.

just some unformulated thoughts...

I am learning to be happy with who I am....and less concerned about what other people think of me....

I think this is important.

So many people have views on what a pastor should be, what they should do...
Obviously there is only one opinion that matters....Gods....
I have to continue to be grow in my joy with what I think God wants me to do, who He wants me to be.

There are so many who venture opinionon who a pastor should be, what they should do....they generally are not much does there opinion matter? It does matter...but probaby a lot less that I sometimes demonstrate through my actons that it matters.

What the Penninsula Golf Course can teach the a negative sense

Yesterday I headed off about 5.30pm to hit the crap out of 70 golf balls at the Penninsula Golf Course.
I was looking for a parking spot and noticed that there was about 15....yes 15 great spots right near the course. Only problem was...they were marked fact they were even closer to the course than the disabled bays. Unbelievable.
How did this make me feel? Well it was obvious who was the most important person there, not the customers...the staff.

What do we do at church which makes the visitor feel they are the most important person? What do we do as a church which ensures that those who are not yet part of the church community know...that we care about them? That we are placing their needs in front of our own?

Just one small thing I do as the pastor.
I don't rush out of the building when my 'stage work' is done
I don't hide away in a 'prayer room' after the service.
I don't go straight to my friends first and laugh with them.

I go to the exit....quickly...before the visitors rush off.
I make sure that I shake their hands, and introduce myself.
I make sure that nearly everyone who came to church that morning sees me, hopefully says hello, and if they have a need, I get to hear about it.

Its not about the Pastor being more important than anyone else, but they do need to lead well....and lead through being available to serve.

The most important people to me on a Sunday morning are those I have never seen at church before, and those who I have not seen very much. I cant apologise for that. I am here to see the church grow.
Those who come to church every week, I also want to touch base with them, and care for them if needed, but my priority is those who are not yet part of our church community, and I want them to know it.

Youtube converter

Here is an excellent little website.
Even better than zamzar.

Converts Youtube videos to whatever format you want, online....

Bon Jovi does Silent Night

Looking for your next contemporary Christian Christmas Carol?
Maybe you could get the guys to do this?

Jesus loves us so much.....

"With arms outstretched and nail-pierced hands, Jesus is saying, 'This is how much I love the world. This is how much I love the atheists, secularists, Democrats, and Republicans. And this is how much I love Muslims, Jews, Hindus, and Buddhists. I love them so much it hurts. I love them so much, I’d rather die than live without them.'" - Rick Warren

Conflict in church

The following post has nothing to do with my present church situation, thank God, but rather some stuff two friends are going through.

It follows typical and similar patterns.
Someone welcomes you with open arms...they are your best friend, your biggest supporter. Watch them....they will turn. When you stop dancing to their will become the devil incarnate.

Car park meetings, small group meetings. This is where the conflict is stirred up. Like a witch turning her the discontents turn their gossip.
The Pastor is very often the one under attack....why? Because their is so much money and power available (insert sarcastic smilie here)
No....often because he/she is a person dedicated to God, and His purposes. Often because they want something more for the church, for the church to grow, become missional, become relevant. For this...because he goes against the statue quo, against comfort, they are disrespected, gossiped about, openly slandered...and they are meant to take it, because they are the 'godly one'.

After fielding three conversations about this sort of crap this week, I reassured the people involved, they are not generally happens to us all.

Why do we put up with it? Many of us dont...we leave, we go do something easier. Our family suffers too much.
Others give in, and become the 'nice pastor' that people want us to be, but dont need us to be.

Others persevere and pray, and choose to lead with grace, strength and love, and true meekness. Not perfectly, plenty of humanity....but we choose to pray, persevere and lead none the less. And sometimes....heaven shines forth...and people are added to the family of God.

Toodyay Baptist Church

Spoke up at Toodyay Baptist Church today....stayed at a friends house and celebrated my wifes birthday.

Its a great church. Not big, but they are certainly punching against their weight.
They have a great facility on the main strip, with good audio visual equipment. They bought a former works factory building, and have renovated it
This is not only for them, but the building is used all week by various community groups, dancing, drum groups, parenting groups etc.

They also run saturday night family movies....which in a pretty quite Saturday night, attract a good crowd.
I was really impressed with their community minded outlook.

Enjoyed preaching there....but there is nothing quite like Inglewood... :)

Christmas Publicity

Getting ready for a fantastic Christmas Season...
This year we are doing this series at church....
Carols at the Inglewood Civic Centre...and Christmas Day service as well.
Getting a banner made up (Western Landscapes $100 for a 2m x 1m Cheap!) and hanging it overlooking Beaufort St.
The local Cafe is sponsoring our carols....should be a great night!

up a gear...

Busy busy Christmas!

holidays to come...
sand, beach.....swimming with my kids...
maybe some good coffee....

its all it!

Church today

Great day in church today.
The service seemed to 'flow' seemed like seemingly radomn aspects of the service were all interelated and with common themes....
We introduced our Ministry Team Leaders and Leadership Team to the church, and stood and prayed for them all.

I served communion to all the leaders....who then in turn went on to serve communion to the congregation. It was a visual reminder that leaders are servants first...and not above anyone else....

Then...continuing the 'flow' thought...I then radomnly introduced a visitor from Brazil to another girl who came from Portugal...not thinking they spoke the same language...which of course they do. (duh!) and off they happily prattled to each other, and ended up organising for the visitor to attend a home group...God is good..and knows far better than me what needs doing.

Melinda made some incredible morning tea.....little savoury cheese, bacon, tomatoe scorll thingos...and some lemon butter scroll things...mmmmmm...scroll things.....

Rick Warren on the church's role

This is excellent.
Rick shows how the church can be the third leg on the stool to bring about real change in the environment, social and spiritual issues in the world.

Steve Addison blog

Added another blog to ones I visit.....

Steve Addison has some interesting thoughts...and particularly of late as he has dealt with Baptists.....has been relevant and challenging to myself....

Beaufort St Inglewood/Mnt Lawley

So much social activity on Beaufort St today.
Went down to community centre to help set up for the Artisan Markets which our church administers. We set up a free bouncy castle and music, and look after the stall holders...its great.
About 30 artisan/craft and other stall holders....hive of activity and people.

Drove down the road, passed Mondo's butchers with their markets...
Bought some beautiful Ciabata Bread from Lawleys Market, picked up a coffee from the Beaufort St Merchant, just across from Elmars open street hot meat stall.....

I love living here!!

Theresa's House comes down

Theresa is the lady who lives across the road from the 6th ave church building I work in.

She has lived there for a long time. Today I met a former neighbour of hers who had come to celebrate. After putting up with the cats, the rats, the birds, the .....smell.....for so long I cant blame her....

Yet there is something really sad about today...for Theresa. Her house of many decades is now gone. For whatever reason, and however dysfunctional, it was her home...her families residence.

How Jesus dissapointed people

Do you think a Pastor should follow the example of Jesus? Be careful how you answer!!!

I reckon there is a great book to be written entitled, "How Jesus dissapointed people".

I might right a sermon on that.

Jesus often withdrew to pray.
He often abandoned the crowds clamouring for healing
He very often did the exact opposite of what the religious leaders of his day expected of Him....

He upset a lot of people.

As a pastor, I reckon we often dissapoint people, upset them, and withdraw from them. Maybe, when we are at our best, we are just following the example of Jesus.

Pray for Obama

The world changes.........

Truth is, if you has asked someone 15...or even 10 years ago, if someone called Barrack Hussein Obama could be elected the US President, they would have been reaching for the white coats....

I am glad about the decision the USA has made today. It may not prove to ultimately be the right choice, but I can find many reasons why it is a good decision.

He is black.......I am old enough to remember racism.....and still see it today. Barracks election has shattered a lot of preconceptions. We are all equal before God. The colour of the pigment of our skin is totally irrelevant.
I have seen the videos of how coloured people were treated in the US. This is just the truth, an ugly part of their history, as ugly as Australia's. Enough people in the US have seen past the colour of his skin, and their own predjuices...and voted for him, wonderful.

He is relatively young. He seems vibrant, he seems to challenge. After what I saw of him in a SBS documentary, he seems to have integrity. One person they interviewed said that when he was elected the president of the Harvard Law Students Society, many thought he would divide the group, and promote people on the basis of colour. He did not. He dissapointed many initially, but then....they discovered he was fair, and concillitory. This is what the US needs.

I don't think Mc Cain would have been a bad choice either. He appears to be honest, good humoured and reasonable.

But what is good, is that it appears the election of Barrack has occured without riots, violence or other such things which unfortunately characterise other elections around the world.

If I was a US citizen I have no idea who I would have voted for, honestly.
But as a citizen of the world, and a Christian, I will pray for Obama....God bless him.

Addisons report on the future of Baptists

Steve Addison has nailed it on the future of Baptists.
He points to some very serious questions we need to be asking of ourselves.

"Baptist membership has been falling since 1992.
The gap between membership and population growth has been widening since 1911.
Church attendance has been growing since 2003 but the numbers may not be accurate.
The number of churches is increasing.
The gap between number of churches and population growth has been widening since 1911.
Mainline Protestant churches are in serious decline which outweighs the growth in evangelical churches.
The Australian population is growing at unexpectedly high levels and will continue to do so."

But we probably all know this....what is important is solutions....
This in particular caught my attention....

5. Build a church planting movement
There is no secret regarding what a denomination must do to multiply
churches in a healthy sustainable way. This is what is required:
a. Clarify the vision and ownership for multiplication.
b. Recruit and select the right candidates to lead church planting
c. Equip and coach leaders in the field.
d. Partner with healthy existing churches to plant churches that
e. Intentionally grow the leaders who will plant churches in 3-5
years time
f. Ensure funding strategies are sustainable and will not inhibit the
growth of a church planting movement.
We know what to do. The question is are we willing to commit ourselves
to relentless implementation?

Full report

ps.....we do need a new logo as well Steve!!!


My indoor beach volleyball has entered the nexus of confusion.
We have not lost a set yet this season (a set is 3 games)
We are on top of the ladder
We all turned around tonight and realised..... we are the old farts of the competition. Seriously.
All of us are closer to 40 than 30...most of the teams we play against are 20-30.....

I doubt this nexus will continue....but I am enjoying it while it lasts!

a blended congregation

A great crowd in at church today. Despite the fact I am sick sick sick, it was great to be at church.

An interesting comment from a visitor, who normally attends another church.
His comment, you have a real mix of all types of people, and we do.

About 50 kids under 12, a stack of parents, a few (very few) 40-50's and a good amount of the 'silver hairs'.
It is truly a generational church.
We try hard to do the blended type service well.
Most church growth manuals tell you that this does not work.
But with our songs, our worship leaders pick a good mix, but they are down in a contemporary style....but this seems to resonate with 99% of people.
This morning I caught a senior lady singing along pre service to one of the newest songs we do. That made me feel great.....
I read a lot, and read widely, and I think there is truth is a lot of material. But somehow our church does not have to follow the rules.

Leigh Brown axed

The Roos have delisted Leigh Brown, my former favourite Freo player.

Long Live the Anvil.


Angus Buchan Mighty Mens Conference Promo video

Here is the video that Q made up for our upcoming Angus Buchan Mighty Mens conference....
Men....don't miss it!

Thoughts from Stuart Robinson

Stuart Robinson is the former Senior Pastor at Crossway Church, possibly the largest Baptist Church in Australia. But you could not find a more interesting heritage on the way to being a mega church pastor than Stuart.

He became a Christian when he was 18, after being raised in a distinctly rough and poor family. After some experiences, he became a missionary in flood ravaged Bangladesh.

He came and spoke to us pastors on some very interesting and stimulating points, including the vexed issue of pastors and finances......
here are some points he made...

Stuart Robinson
Crossway Church
those young people who give you the most grief...also become your best leaders

Persevere with those wo give you the most grief

The forrest is full of those with no church background

No sanctimonousjargon
If you promise something from the front..deliver it!
The two things we wont have in our church is Disunity..... or a negative attitude towards growth
If we just talk about faithfulness....its because we are not being fruitful
Affluence is a danger to the man has no need of God...crisis brings out the need for God
More muslims coming to Christ if there is a catastrophe....if they have a loving relationship with a Christian...and the signs and wonders of God

Dreams and visions are bringing many Muslims to Jesus
Conservative in theology radical in activity
Relocation to stir up the spiritual sludge
What does God want....have the people confirmed it?

Great story in the age about Stuarts seccession plan

Beer is

“Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.”(Benjamin Franklin)

My name is Mark Edwards

I have started a new Facebook group, entitled, 'My name is Mark Edwards'. The only requirement is that your name is Mark Edwards, middle name irrelevant....

I started it two days ago, and have six members so far, from all around the world.
I know this says something socialogical....but I dont quite know what, yet. If indeed it says anything.

I watched a facinating documentary last night on networks, and I was particularly drawn to the ideo of hubs of networks, entitled, "How Kevin Bacon Cured Cancer". "We used to think the way in which web pages, power grids and people tied together was more or less random. But recently two young physicists independently discovered that fundamental laws govern networks"

As I watched this fascinating documentary, the theory put foward was that everything in the world could be analysed in the paradigm of networks, and every network had hubs...or as I might designate them, hives of activity. The reference to Kevin Bacon is a throwback to the idea that every Hollywood Actor was seperated from Kevin by only a small amount of degrees.

This theory is fascinating in its application to church work.
Both in the church being a hub of activity within the community, and the leadership of the church. I believe in leadership through influence, consultation, prayer, community.

The position is nowhere near as important as the influence, and being a hub.

Edit: you can download this documentary here

Church Planting Thoughts Part Two

Just some more thoughts....
1. One interesting comment from John Finkelde really resonated with me.
They have planted a new church every 3 years....That sounds do-able to me.
2. Another from Michael Bullard
Like produces like. What is our churches dna, values etc...within reason and creativity, we will likely produce something at least similar to ourselves. That does not mean it wont be different. But as a child is different and similar to their parents.
3. Unless we create ministry and leadership opportunities for young leaders, they will become young leavers....Some may say then that planting churches is a cynical exercise...not at all. In our own home, children grow up and need to lead...and create...for themself.
4. I am favouring, because it suits my dna, the idea of satellite churches. I have seen these work and produce results in Perth.
5. There are some exciting possibilites as I consider the spiritual and physical artery that is Beaufort St.....a church which is cafe culture, almost inner city, and at night.....
6. Without growth, our church will die...we need to consider this now, in our formative years, so it becomes part of our dna moving forward.
7. The senior pastor needs to set the agenda and make it happen. He needs to be a releaser, not a restrictor, and be confident and assured enough, that he can let good things go. He also needs to set the agenda, not have the church set the agenda for him. (yes I said that twice, it bears repeating)

Free wi fi

Coming January/February to a Mc Donalds near you....

all Mc Donalds Australia wide will introduce free wi-fi to their customers.....

Proceeds of Crime

Catholic Election Video

I really don't know what to say about this. Don't assume anything by me posting this here. All I will that it is a very interesting video.

H/t Herding Cats

Stuart Robinson

If you are around, this should be good.

As much as things change....

they stay the same....

never again....thats it.

Church Planting

Had an interesting discussion today with someone from CRM about church planting.
They used the analogy of a person who grew to the age of 19 or 20...and instead of leaving home, stayed there, comfortable and getting their parents expense. Is the church like this? Growing old and fat....and not having any children? Not growing old?

I look at my own denomination and I wonder where all the church plants have gone. Back in the '80's and even 90's churches where being planted, my father started two himself!

Now...I struggle to think of a new church plant.

We need young leaders, young pioneers...we need old guys willing to give it a go.

We need churches who put aside their own fattening needs and plant churches.

I want to be in the church planting game. Thats scary.......We need to get our church to maturity, so we can start planting churches. If no one else will, we will.....and in inner city areas as well......

The greatest period of evangelism and growth through evangelism generally takes place during a church plant, the first few years. We need to do this.....

mmmm...I can feel God giving me some vision!

Cross Glow Loop

Cross Glow Loop
just a nice little loop I made up for Sunday

Right click here to download

Qld Baptist Convention funnies...

If you are a Baptist, then head over to this post by of the funniest pieces I have read for a long time.....don't be drinking your coffee while reading may end up with coffee in your keyboard!

Baptist Convention Queensland Calender

11, 000 hits

This video I made up has been viewed 11, 000 times....thats pretty cool..for me!!

Baptist Union Logo must go

This is not a protest letter, but rather a communication letter. If you dont communicate, people dont know what you are thinking. This logo represents something I am proud of, the Baptist Churches. That does not mean I am Baptist to the core, in fact what I like about Baptists is our diversity, and abiliy to embrace the best that we see in other traditions and denominations, and movements. For this reason, our logo fails to present us as we are, a vibrant movement of churches....

I am going to mail this letter tommorow. If you are a Baptist Pastor, and want your name included, let me know via email today!

The Baptist Union Logo
Time for Change

According to the Baptist Union Website, “Australian Baptists today are a diverse community. During this twentieth century they have witnessed considerable growth, partly through immigration but also through vigorous evangelistic endeavours. Since the 1970s the impact of the charismatic renewal movement has led to changes in worship and leadership styles”

The Baptist Union is one of the few church denominations experiencing real growth in Australia. We have much to thank God for.

We have steadily grown into a contemporary and relevant movement, and it is time our logo represented us as we are today.

According to the Baptist Union Website our present logo is described thus.
“The circle represents the all-encompassing love of God and the world for which Christ died; the empty cross pointing to our resurrected Saviour and the significance of his death and resurrection for our life; and the open Bible to indicate that we are people of the Word. “

This logo has served us well for a number of decades, and yet it is time for it to more accurately present the vibrant and contemporary nature of our organization.

The following Baptist Pastors believe it is time we had a logo which sends the right message to a secular society, one that depicts us as we are, a relevant, contemporary, and vibrant Australian organization. We respectfully ask that a marketing company is commissioned to design a logo reflecting this which will replace the old one.

Pastor Rowland Croucher John Mark Ministries
Pastor Rob Douglas Baptist Care
Pastor Mark Edwards Inglewood Church
Pastor Wayne Field Australind Baptist Church
Pastor Andrew Hamilton Brighton
Pastor Alex Huggett Ellenbrook Baptist Church
Pastor Colin Lituri Woodvale Baptist Church
Pastor Craig Lydon Beaumaris Baptist Church
Pastor Ian Packer Pennant Hills Baptist
Pastor Karen Siggins Lesmurdie Baptist Church
Pastor Jackie Smoker Como Baptist Church
Pastor Allan Thomas Kalgoorlie Baptist Church
Pastor Hans van Asselt Mandurah Baptist Church
Rev. Steve Turnbull Emu Plains Community Baptist Church
Pastor Peter White Beechboro Baptist
Pastor Zaw Win Myanmar Baptist Church

Green cars...

This post should go under the category....Mark rambling about things he knows very little about....

I dont understand why people say they are buying a Prius...when buying a new car surely uses more resources than what a Prius ever saves....

I dont understand why hippy greenie lefties drive old bomb cars which are incredibly inefficient and dont have catalytic convertors...which I know from previous experience in the industry, actually are very effective at reducing harmful gases.

Either way....

Prayer...Jesus withdrew

Jesus withdrew to pray....

Right click here to download

Feels like summer....

What a beautiful day to be in Perth....
Had a great service this morning, the band was great, and Colin spoke well...we also heard about Sandy's trip to Karratha and Colin's trip to India....both opportunities to serve...

I tucked my head into the Babylonia Cafe this week...and dropped some 5 senses beans in. I am hoping we can work together on some community events, and it would be good if he could serve up some great coffee from his central coffee shop...really nice guy.

Then this afternoon we had a family lunch...and a nice bottle of Amberly followed by a daughter is learning to swim....she is so cute.....just perfect (except when she is arguing with her brother!)

Two funerals and a wedding

The pastors life....
Kicked off the week with a wedding. A lovely couple, the wife comes to our church and is involved.
A small and quiet simple ceremony, with just immediate family in attendance, and Eliot singing a John Lennon wedding song....

Then two funerals yesterday. One for a ladies husband who I have only known recently...amazing what sort of things come out at a funeral. He was an Irish larrikan, a likeable sort of fellow who worked as a nurse at RPH for 30+ years. Quite interesting to think of a male nurse starting up in that profession that long ago....aparrently a jokestar....always up for a laugh...

Then the funeral of Brian Brand. He was an amazing guy, and it showed with who was there for the funeral.....many members of WA politics, and social standing. Brian was devoted to helping others, quick with a joke, the sort of guy who was incredibly personable and warm and generous....

Draining! Even though I did not perform either funeral, in some ways it was a draining day. Emotional, seeing people go through all that stuff....

The world is peripheral to the church

Here is a video I made up for our church launch.....
The original is almost 100megs....but if anyone wants it, I will try and upload it shortly.

Life is

A church video I made up based on the idea that we need to 'be still and know that I am God' in a busy world. You can download a wmv version by by right clicking HERE. Just let me know how and if you use it.

Proposed letter to BU

Hi all......
If you are a Baptist Pastor in Australia, and have not recieved the letter I have just sent, and would like to put your name on this letter....please let me know. Dissenting views are also okay!
I feel passionately about this. Its time we said something better about ourselves...because we are doing a great job as churches.....I intend to send this letter to our own BU WA council...and to the national union.

The Baptist Union Logo
Time for Change

According to the Baptist Union Website, “Australian Baptists today are a diverse community. During this twentieth century they have witnessed considerable growth, partly through immigration but also through vigorous evangelistic endeavours. Since the 1970s the impact of the charismatic renewal movement has led to changes in worship and leadership styles”

The Baptist Union is one of the few church denominations experiencing real growth in Australia. We have much to thank God for.

We have steadily grown into a contemporary and relevant movement, and it is time our logo represented us as we are today.

According to the Baptist Union Website our present logo is described thus.
“The circle represents the all-encompassing love of God and the world for which Christ died; the empty cross pointing to our resurrected Saviour and the significance of his death and resurrection for our life; and the open Bible to indicate that we are people of the Word. “

This logo has served us well for a number of decades, and yet it is time for it to more accurately present the vibrant and contemporary nature of our organization.

The following Baptist Pastors believe it is time we had a logo which sends the right message to a secular society, one that depicts us as we are, a relevant, contemporary, and vibrant Australian organization. We respectfully ask that a marketing company is commissioned to design a logo reflecting this which will replace the old one.

Baptist Union Logo

Okay....I have got a bee in my bonnett....
is this the lamest logo you have ever seen?

What does it say to you?

To says we don't care about the non churched....because it communicates nothing to them.

We don't care about peoples perception of us as a organisation, because it says we are traditional, old fashioned...and too lazy to do anything about it.

Baptists are notoriously slow to change. Its time to change this. And not in a half hearted way, it needs to be changed completely....and done properly...but a marketing company.

Lets redo the whole logo, lete reframe the image we are presenting of ourselves.

We need to send the following messages.

We are contemporary, we have life, we are relevant, we are not some two bit organisation.

All the above statements are least of WA Baptists....its time our logo reflected that, and reflected who we are, and who we are becoming.

boring to the other side of the globe

My son often asks me if we can go to China....goodness knows why, it may have something to do with the fact all his DS games come from there. I said to him once, start digging, thats about the only way we are going to get there. Seems I have to rethink that. If I start digging, we are going to get wet, thats all.

To see what I mean, go to the map tunnelling tool. It shows you were you would end up if you could dig yourself to the other side of the globe.

Church on Sunday

Tired......looking forward to Eliot and Colin being back!

Great great day today. Great crowd of people in, and in Colin Battersby's word, "a great spirit in this place"

I agree. There is something special about being together and worshipping together. Colin does a great ministry, sensitive, passionate and humble. He lifts the people around him, and works great with anyone.

We continued our series and I spoke on the beattitudes. A number of people commented on how passionate I was this morning...thats true. I finished the sermon with the thought, "who is the light of the world?"

I read the appropriate verse from Matthew five, and even then people gave the wrong answer!
Which hopefully made my point.

We are the light of the world, the Church is salt and light....we reflect His glory and his values and attributes through becoming a truly "blessed' people...a people who are poor in spirit etc etc.

Spring in the Valley...or Mark is getting old...

Headed out to the Swan Valley for 'spring in the valley' today.
In years gone by we have sampled some good wine, cheese and meats...enjoyed the time touring a beautiful part of our city.

no more.....Spring in the Valley has been transformed into a massive attempt to get as many 20 year old lads and laddetts plastered as quickly as possible, with a wide varieties of wine and beer.......

Various bus companies are cashing in on the phenomenon transporting thousands of barely dressed young people to the mulitude of accepting places. I dont know if your daughter was one of the girls there....but I hope not!

Dont get me wrong, I am no wowser....but it really is not great if your looking for a nice day out with your family.

None the less, we had a great day, and sharing it with some new friends from another country made it even better. The Margaret River Chocolate Factory was great, we had a nice picnic near the river, and Edgecombe Brothers was a good change from the overflowing lines of people and crowded wineries. .
We actually had a great day, and ended up finishing up at the Rose and Crown for a bite and a drink. Suprisingly the R & C was not letting bus loads of yobs in, so we got a good table in the beautiful weather.

Mark Sayers on communication

This is one of the best and concise encouragements to contemporary preaching I have read for a while.

To all you preachers out there, please read this.
It will either confirm you are on the right track, encourage you to do better...or annoy the heck out of you. If it annoys you, need to change! :)

Here is the first and best point for all you slack bums.

If your message is infectious, you won‟t be just talking to the people sitting in front of you, you will be talking to their friends, family and contacts. Think beyond the room. How can you communicate your message in a way that will „live on‟ beyond that moment? Shape your message so that they will tell their friends, who will tell their friends, who will tell their friends etc. Are you preparing this weeks sermon, or are you crafting a message that has potential for exponential growth?

The rest

Vale Brian Brand

Brian Brand was a strong Christian man, married to Jennie Bickmore Brand.
I do not know much of his history, but I knew from meeting with him often, that he was a great and strong leader, quick with a joke and a smile, but intense and purposeful as well.

He lived life to the full. There was nothing he was afraid of. He was incredibly relational.

So very sad to hear of his shock passing.

I know he is now with Jesus, but he leaves behind a beautiful wife and strong leader in Jennie.

The lucky ones...

this fresh off the Mark Edwards message line.......

ready for this Sunday's message....

"Going by worldly standards, who would you say the lucky people are? People with money and possessions? People who have extraordinary abilities? People who are famous? People who are powerful? People with a high education? It’s these kinds of people who the world calls lucky. But Jesus comes along and turns this way of thinking upside down. Jesus says no! It’s actually the lowly people, the down-and-outers, those who are doing it tough that are lucky. And it’s not just that they are lucky, they are blessed by God. They have God’s approval. They have God’s thumbs up."

Light of the world... stepped down into darkness, opened my eyes let me see...

Beautiful song, almost could be used as a interpretive psalm of Phillipians 2....

Interesting aspect is that in Matthew 5 it is actually us, the church, who are the 'light of the world'...a though echoed in Ephesians 1.
We are the reflected light of Jesus, called to not hide our light under a bushel.
Thats an amazing thought.
All this time, I thought in that verse in Matthew, Jesus said He is the light of the world. In fact in this context, the context of the beattitudes, we are. As we become like Christ in our attitude, we display the light of Christ to the world...amazing.

Trade Week

The media are like a pack of seagulls around trade week. There is so much blatant gamesmanship going on.
Port Coach Mark Williams has said publicly they dont really know if they want Josh Carr. After seeing him be part of tearing apart the Eagles in the 2nd derby, I dont think anyone believes him.

And Carlton offering pick 24 for Warnock...sheesh.
I just hope Freo are able to get something good for him, he is a great 'bet' in terms of becoming a very influential player.

By the way, one of the key searches that brings people to this blog is "West Coast Eagles Jokes"...well they are...jokes that is!!! :)

Stay at home dads

As per usual, Driscoll does not flinch from what he believes.
With all the namby pamby 'lets water down the bible' types around at the moment, I admire him for that.

I reckon if you are a lazy bum husband/father...who just cant be bothered providing for your family, you probably need a kick in the pants.

However there are many situations where grace and understanding is needed.

I can also think of plenty of fathers who for a whole raft of reasons look after their kids while their wife works. Me for 1!! Melinda has always chosen to work part time, and I generally look after the kids one day a week, have done from birth...and I love it. It is a privilege and a joy to be a part of their lives.

Repent for the Kingdom of God is at hand

Melinda and I went up to the Kalamunda Markets on Saturday. They are great markets.
Lots of interesting stalls...delicious and varied ethnic foods....etc etc...

One interesting stall had this sign up, which I should have taken a picture of....

"Repent for the Kingdom of God is at hand"

Today I told the story, as I spoke about the John the Baptist story....
Of one 'non churched' knows what this means, it probably does exactly the opposite of what the intent is....


They were there, they did have good intentions ( I presume)....good on them for that!

just some thing I have been thinking about.

RIP Emerging Church

"We have failed to address our own souls and our own sense of self. We have pointed the finger - analysed and critiqued church patterns, missional models and Christian culture, but have remained naive to the way in which we ourselves as individuals have co-opted by contemporary culture. For we carry within us viruses. Parasitical organisms which are capable of ruining all of our plans, of wounding, weakening and even destroying our movements, churches, communities, ministries"


How many of those who seek reform within the church, do so from the frings, occaisionally throwing stones, occaisionally asking the church to support them financially, all the while...what we really need are those who commit themselves to the Body of Christ...fight for Her, protect Her....restore for Her best and Her growth....
It may only take one of those within a local church to stick around and commit themselves..and earn the respect of those within see Her rise up and take hold of what God lays before us. The fields are white for harvest.....

1st century evangelism

Matthew 2

7Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. 8He sent them to Bethlehem and said, "Go and make a careful search for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him."
9After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east[e] went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. 12And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.

I love this story.

Here are a bunch of people...weirdos really...from miles away, foreigners actually.
They follow stars for goodness sake. They believe that stars are this case they are right.
Some key points.

They find joy when they find Jesus
They bring gifts
They work to protect the fragile child

Prayer..............God....that I would see this happen. Those far from God would find joy in Jesus, bring gifts and work to protect his name.


Its an interesting phenomen that I am a part of.

Like any electronic medium, it has its communication issues. Nothing beats a face to face conversation for understanding. Everything else falls short. God has designed us with the innate ability to read body language, tonal inflections, eye contact....or lack of...the ability to discern a whole raft of emotions....from sarcasm to spite.

However I do like the network aspect of it. To be able to be a part of peoples lives on a level you are comfortable with.

Someone commented that the only people on Facebook are pastors and women...I dont know what that said....but stacks of my mates are on Facebook...but a heck of a lot of them are pastors. I reckon Pastors are big on communication, connnection and networking.
Mark Edwards's Facebook profile


"Hollywood does an incredible job of making fake things look real & Christians do an incredible job of making real things look fake."
Phil Cooke's Branding Faith H/T Kem Meyer


Matthew 1
18This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. 19Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.
20But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,[
c] because he will save his people from their sins."
22All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23"The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"[
d]—which means, "God with us."

What a beautiful piece of scripture....God with us. Reassuring, glorious, Creator, powerful, with us. Something to be thankful and contemplate....outside of the 'silly season'.

Sony Vegas Tutorials

What on earth did we do before the internet?
As the steep learning curve for Vegas continues, I found myself wanting to add some video effects to a loop I was making up for our new series.
What to it of course. (Does anyone else use any other browser?)

There....found about 10 different You Tube and other videos which I could watch, showing me exactly what I needed to do...which is just as well because the help files are no good. They assume a lot of knowledge....Will show you the results just as soon as the file is rendered. Sony takes a lot longer to render videos that I have been used to, something to do with the greatly increased quality I suppose!

Top Five Church Websites

Here are the top five websites decided by me...with no real credibility....just my opinion.

5. Soul Purpose
Nice use of graphics, updated regularly. Good mix of info and graphics.

4. Crossroads Church
Love the graphics and subtle use of flash

3. Community Christian
Check out the 'about us' page for something really creative

2.Mars Hill
Whoever does the graphics for one of the best. Mix of old school ideas with funky images.

1. Inglewood Community Church
Yes its mine, thats why its number one! Apart from that, it has great contemporary colours, creative design, updated regularly and gives the right impression of the church. Some websites you may get the idea the church is huuuuge, when in fact its not. This site accurately portrays us as we are.

Website tips
Dont use animated gifs.
Dont use music
Use a standard font through out Same colour, same font, two or three sizes only.
Use Colour sparingly.

Church Vision Sunday

Today was Vision Sunday at Inglewood.....great day.

Here is a summary of what I shared......God willing....we will fulfill what He lays in front of us, we will seize it, hear His Voice, and be His people in our city.

The fool

Rob Bell's video, "All things are spiritual" is a fantastic and inspiring piece of art and thought.
As we were watching it, he talks about a illustration of what it would be like if we lived in a two dimensional world. Rob used the example of Flatland, a story written by Edwin A. Abbott in late 1800s about the inhabitants of a two-dimensional world. When someone from 3d land tried to interact with someone from Flatland, to Flatlanders, the interaction would appear as lines and dots since the "depth" dimension does not exist; a sphere would appear as a circle, a cube would be a square, and so on. This is the illustration Rob used to illustrate how far we are from understanding the true nature of God, yet how close God could be from us and yet would we still not realize it.Two people are there, and they both see something coming toward them.
Rob uses the illustration of his wedding ring being poked through a napkin. He is in 3d...but the two people are only in 2d...what do they see?
He muses that one of them sees and feels that there is something more. The other one does not.

The question we asked in our small group was, "What is the difference between the two?" Why do some people see God in circumstances and nature, why do some not? It is a vexing question.
Bell references the scripture which bodly declares, "the fool says in his heart there is no God".

So often those we consider intellectual may have actually made a heart decision. That they will not see God, even when creation screams out His name. They may be fools.

The Bible

If you are visiting this blog for the first time, or dont know me...this post may seem strange, or a bit weird...or you may think I am 'one of those'.....but here goes.

Since when did the Bible stop being the foundation of our faith?
Since when did we start interpreting the bible as 'just a bunch of stories' with no practical instruction and even 'shudder' commands?
Since when did the Bible stop being a prescriptive document?

Is it because post modernism is pushing us too far the other way? Maybe, yet I have never resonated with modernism. Logical and rational arguments for proving God will only get us so far, we need faith. Someone wise mentioned to me the other day that we often interpret spiritual principles through a Greek mindset, to the detriment of the Hebrew one. I agree entirely with that.
Truth is that we need to understand that the Bible is true in all it affirms. And it affirms some very basic things about God, and His plan for our life.

If someone is not a Christian, thats one thing. But if someone says they are a Christian, and a church leader....then lets agree that the Bible is the place we turn to for truth, absolutes and what is sinful and against Gods nature. There is plenty of things I dont understand about God, His principles and why He operates the way He does. But I still surrender to what is clear from the scriptures, even if it sometimes grates against my culturally sensitive, post modernist mind.

Graham Mabury Video now online

Thanks to Q's cleverness, you can now watch the Graham Mabury video online if you would like to.
Just go to our Church's website and download the file, its about 40megs.
Church Resources

Philosophy, Monty Python and Murdoch Uni

I took a minor in Philosophy when I did my Theology Degree at Murdoch University.
This appeals on many levels.....

We count our children

Paul Borden's words ring in my ears, 'you count what is valuable to you'.

On Sunday we served communion to over 140 adults, which means there were more than that there.
But I can tell you exactly how many kids were there. I can tell you their names. I can access their phone numbers and addresses.
This is because our Childrens worker counts them, and keeps a record of their visit.
They are valuable to us.
They mean the world to us.

But we will focus on children. They need to hear and respond to the gospel. Not in some sort of 'Jesus Camp' way, but in the sense that the Bible speaks of, letting the children come to Jesus.
Steve Addison asks the question, "Where are the children?". Well, 59 of them where at Inglewood Community Church on Sunday, thats something to be proud of, something to take joy in.