Thursday, August 31, 2006

'On mine arm shall they trust' Isaiah 51:5

In seasons of severe trial, the Christian has nothing on earth that he can trust to, and is therefore compelled to cast himself on his God alone. When his vessel is on its beam-ends, and no human deliverance can avail, he must simply and entirely trust himself to the providence and care of God. Happy storm that wrecks a man on such a rock as this! O blessed hurricane that drives the soul to God and God alone! There is no getting at our God sometimes because of the multitude of our friends; but when a man is so poor, so friendless, so helpless that he has nowhere else to turn, he flies into his Father’s arms, and is blessedly clasped therein! When he is burdened with troubles so pressing and so peculiar, that he cannot tell them to any but his God, he may be thankful for them; for he will learn more of his Lord then than at any other time. Oh, tempest-tossed believer, it is a happy trouble that drives thee to thy Father! Now that thou hast only thy God to trust to, see that thou puttest thy full confidence in him. Dishonour not thy Lord and Master by unworthy doubts and fears; but be strong in faith, giving glory to God. Show the world that thy God is worth ten thousand worlds to thee. Show rich men how rich thou art in thy poverty when the Lord God is thy helper. Show the strong man how strong thou art in thy weakness when underneath thee are the everlasting arms. Now is the time for feats of faith and valiant exploits. Be strong and very courageous, and the Lord thy God shall certainly, as surely as he built the heavens and the earth, glorify himself in thy weakness, and magnify his might in the midst of thy distress. The grandeur of the arch of heaven would be spoiled if the sky were supported by a single visible column, and your faith would lose its glory if it rested on anything discernible by the carnal eye. May the Holy Spirit give you to rest in Jesus this closing day of the month.

Charles Spurgeon

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

man of the year awards

3rd Place Albania

2nd Place Serbia

and the winner is Ireland......


5,000 Words

You can visit our new group blog here at 5,000 words

Check out some of the interesting posts and add your comments.

Monday, August 28, 2006

the authority of the scriptures

Check out what Ruth has to say, it is worth reading.

where did the weekend go?

So, where on earth did the weekend go? Friday night I got home and we ordered yummy Chinese takeout and watched the movie 'Goal' - I would recommend it, it was a good one. We went to bed really early as I was a tired little thing.

Saturday I got up and went to do the food shopping, I got home and helped get all our financial stuff up to date - yawn yawn yawn. Then.... I decided to put the pizza in the oven that I got for our lunch - we were both so looking forward to it - yummy Hawaiian - yeah baby. So I took the cling film off and put it in the oven. 15 minutes later 'ting ting ting' - the yummy Hawaiian pizza was ready to go. I went into the kitchen and took the said yummy pizza out of the oven - to find.... dom dom dom dom daaaaaaaaa. That this thick piece of plastic that I hadn't taken off stuck to the bottom - Grrrrrr. I tried to pull it off but couldn't and when I lifted it up to try again the topping all slid off.

I was not a happy chappy AT ALL I did have a bit of a giggle but due to the fact that I am looking after my hubby I was really discouraged by the 'pizza episode' :( I had crackers and cheese in the end and my SP had a sandwich.

Saturday night we went to the AFL and watched the Swans win. SP had to go in a wheelchair :( which worked out for the best
Sunday we had brunch with SP's parents who were in town and we spoke to his sister who was about to fly out to Bandeh Aceh, Indonesia to go see how some of the projects are going in getting the town back on it's feet since the tsunami. She did a lot of work there with the people after the Tsunami hit.

Sunday night we went to a training session called Growth Groups, on how to lead an effective bible study, it's going to be on for 7 weeks and it was really good fun and very interesting. I am looking forward to learning how I can better facilitate bible study and look after the people in our group.. Afterwards I went to have a drink with Han and then we went off to church and heard a cool sermon on Luke 12:35 - 13:9

What did you do this weekend?

Friday, August 25, 2006

introducing god book launch



Wednesday night was the Introducing God book launch night. I unfortunately couldn't make it as I had to get home to look after my injured hubby, BUT I heard it was a fab night and I would urge you all to get a copy, it's an excellent give away book to give to your friends. You can order it from the Introducing God office.

i just arrivd back from the land of narnia


Noooooooooo, I am not crazy and I am not mad . Last week when SP was in hospital I decided to read the Narnia series. I just received all of the books that my Nan brought me 20 years ago. A friend from England came for a visit and brought them out for me :)

So, I got on the bus this morning and started reading The Magician's Nephew and was transported into the world of Narnia. I love it when a book sucks you in and it's like you are not on the bus travelling to work with a bunch of other people but you are ACTUALLY with Digory and Polly riding swiftly on Fledge in the world of Narnia on the mission that Aslan has sent you on. I have loved reading this first one, I either never read it or don't remember it at all but how Aslan brings the world into existence is amazing.. I love it I love it I love it.

I have almost finished this one and actually when the bus stopped I was like - 'Oh yeah I am on the bus and I have to go to work', that waking up from almost being in another world. I am excited to read the other books and to one day read these books to my own kids.

Have a super Friday :)

Thursday, August 24, 2006

sad to not be at adventure club :(

Well, it's Thursday afternoon and the time I would normally be at Adventure Club with my beautiful little kids. I have to take a few weeks off while SP is unable to drive and get around because it is too hard logisitcally to work out, BUT a few people have kindly said they would help out which is lovely.
I love Adventure Club, I love seeing all the little ones learning and excited about our God. I will miss seeing them for a few weeks but it isn't forever and so it's not all bad.
I was so encouraged last week by little Thomas' comments about heaven and what it will be like and his confession of believing in Jesus, it was the most amazing week and I enjoyed every minute. Please pray for him and all the other kids we have at Adventure Club that they might truly know our great God and that they will continue to walk with him. Also pray for us leaders that we might be diligent and faithful in preaching to these little children and that God might work through the skits, talks and fun time to grow them into godly men and women who know and fear the Lord.

biblical lessons in love


A few of us at work were talking about the columns in magazines where you get 'love' and relationship advice and I wondered 'why don't you have that in Christian publications'. Now if you did it would obviously be totally different to what is in the secular magazines BUT just because we are Christian doesn't mean that there shouldn't be godly, biblical and practical advice available.

So I thought I would email MC and let her know my thoughts about this idea, we are going to talk about it some more when we meet for coffee. I just speak to people about this kind of stuff and think that many could benefit from this.

I am not saying that it is down to the 'agony aunt' and that they should be the source and wisdom in the whole matter but to suggest godly, biblical, practical advice for people struggling in certain areas might be good. God and what the bible says should ALWAYS be where we go to on this matter, but real life experiences and advice is also valuble. Anyway this is just something floating in my head at the moment. It might not work and it might be a bad idea but just thought I would float the idea out there.

What does everyone else think about this as an idea?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

some of the things I love

I love getting emails
I love giggling
I love palm trees
I love the smells of magnolia trees
I love my aloe-vera plant and feeling how squidgy the leaves are
I love having soft hair
I love it when the dentist says no we don't have any work to do here - your teeth are fine
I love staying in my PJs all day
I love cups of tea when it’s raining
I love cups of tea when it’s not raining
I love it when God teaches us how to be more like his son
I love snow in winter
I love giving presents
I love sending people packages
I love the smell of SP when he wears his special aftershave
I love Dory from Nemo because she is quite like me
I love that God is in control of all things
I love Creature Comforts
I love where I am from
I love Skyping with Han
I love brunches
I love that God is sovereign and we can trust him
I love talking on my phone
I love the weekends
I love the beach in summer
I love how God speaks to us in through his word
I love getting into bed at night and snuggling up
I love my Ugg Boots

What are some of the things you love?

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

teach me O Lord

I have been out of the loop for a while and so thought I would give you a quick update. SP or Scoot ;) is out of hospital now, he had his operation on Saturday and got out on Sunday - woo hoo. I have taken the last two days off to look after him, he is getting the hang of the crutches after he fell at the top of the stairs at the hosptial, thankfully he fell backwards and didn't hurt himself.
falling down concrete stairs = not nice.
Thankfully the operation was a success and it looks like he might only be in the cast the lesser amount of time (maybe 6-8 weeks) instead of 12 weeks. We go to see the surgeon in two weeks so will find out more then.
Please pray for patience and fast healing for Scoot and pray that I would be open to learn all the things God wants to teach me through this..
Just on the phone to my old housemates from London, one is from New Zealand (she just got back from a mission in Argentina) and the other is a Brit, so must go and chat.

Friday, August 18, 2006

update

SP Update:

I didn't end up going to work today as I wasn't sure if I would be needing to pick up SP from the hospital, he saw the specialist today who confirmed that is has ruptured his achilles tendon, it is totally separated so he needs surgery. We thought he might have it tonight but they were behind with there procedures and so he will be having surgery between 10am and 12pm tomorrow (Sat). I spent 4 hours at the hospital this afternoon and a couple of hours this morning, he has to spend another night in the hospital tonight as he needs to be ready to go in for surgery in the morning. He had his lesson for walking on cruches today - he passed with flying colours ;) It is very unfortunate that we have 3 flights of stairs up to our unit ;(

Despite panicking and wondering about the next few months without SP being mobile, with moving house and taking care of him, etc God is really good. I am sure this is going to teach me heaps about what it means to be a godly wife who cares for her husband, as hard as it could be I am excited to be able to do this for SP. Putting him first, serving him and loving him. I know this will be challenging as I can be so self-centered and life can often be about me, me, me, me, me! Pray for me that I might put his needs before my own and that I might be able to love him in the ways he needs me to over the next few months.

God has also shown me how much I miss the 'little' things that Scott does, like parking the car in our extremely small garage (I did it for the first time last night, 3 attempts later), the helping with the groceries and the things we can so easily take for granted. I am thankful for this refreshing acknowledgement and thankfulness for all the great things my husband does for us.

Please pray for him tonight and tomorrow as he goes for surgery and please pray for a quick recovery.

Thanks so much for all your prayers and messages - you guys rock ;)

i believe in Jesus and a trip to the emergency room

yes it is an interesting title and it's been an interesting night, you might want a coffee or tea before you read this....

Part One

The day started off as normal (it's now 1am - way past my bedtime) I went to work and left to go to Adventure Club as normal. I arrived at church totally excited as I missed the kids last week as I was off sick. I had my lesson planned, but was a little nervous, we played some games, had a little skit and then I did my talk to my lovely little group of K-Year 2s. They listened attentively to my talk on "I am the bread that gives life! No one comes to me will ever be hungry" and "The Feeding of the 5,000". It was cool to see them so excited I totally talked the talk up and got their attention. I will write more about the talk tomorrow - well it is tomorrow so I guess later.

One little boy called Thomas - who shall we say, can be a little naughty (and that's probably being generous) was really into it. After I had finished the talk we did a craft and made some "I am thankful for ......" notes to put in our "I am the bread that gives life" slice of bread they drew on and coloured. I started asking questions based on my talk about who gives eternal life? what does it mean to have eternal life? how many people did Jesus feed with 5 loaves and 2 fish? etc. Anyhoo Thomas started asking me all these questions:

Will Jesus and God be in heaven? What will we look like in heaven? and a bunch more great questions. I explained there would be no more hurting or pain in heaven that if we believe in Jesus Christ and trust him we will go to heaven. He turned to me with a big smile and true earnestness and said "I believe in Jesus". Now you have got to understand this is a major breakthrough with this little boy - it just melted my heart, I nearly burst into tears because the whole conversation was just beautiful and an amazing way to see our God at work. Everything is possible with him.

Part Two

After Adventure Club I had a lovely night with Han, Ruth, Kym and Aimee. We had dinner at Ruth's and then we watched a girlie movie, it was lovely to hang out with these girls and catch up..

The beautiful Kym told me she would drive me home as SP was playing squash, so on our way home at about 10pm I got a call from SP who said he had hurt his achilles tendon and needed to go to the hospital - yikes. Kym dropped me home, 5 minutes later someone came and picked me up to take me to SP at the squash courts as he couldn't drive, I drive him to the hospital and he is now in a cast and is staying over night. It looks like he has either ruptured or torn this tendon which will probably mean an operation tomorrow and then 6 or more weeks in a cast. He has to stay overnight to get an ultrasound in the morning which will show them what the best course of action will be. I left him there in the not so "Hilton" type hospital room - poor fella ;(

Please pray for him that the ultrasound might not be as bad as expected and that they will be able to repair the damage effectively and completely. Please pray he might not be in too much pain. Please pray the "extremely important" meeting he was meant to be running tomorrow at work won't cause to many problems. Please pray for me as this will be my first big "take care of my hubby when he is injured" challenge, pray for patience, love, understanding and kindness - oh heck pray for all the fruits of the Spirit ;)

Herein lies the end of my busy day - this little chica must head off to bed, it's 1.30am...

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

ever feel like this?



I don't today but I do think this is really funny!!!

our new home

routine, routine! wherefore art thou routine?

I am highly surprised by this new revelation of myself. I am not really too much of a routine girl, more of a fly by the seat of my pants kinda girl. But this week my whole morning routine has been thrown into disarray!

SP has got a job he has to work on in the city at a client's office so he has to leave a lot earlier than I do. This is our 'normal' morning routine:

We wake up at 7am, I have a shower while SP turns on the coffee machine and irons anything we need ironing (I have such a helpful husband). Then SP has a shave and shower while I get ready and then I go and make our lunches and our breakfast. Once SP is ready he comes and makes us coffee. We sit down eat breakfast and then clean our teeth and off we toodle in the car, pick up SP's Irish work mate drive to Neutral Bay and then I get a bus into the city.

my new temporary routine...

SP gets up, gets ready and does his own thing, he kisses me good-bye (I am still in bed) and gets the bus to the city. I get up at the usual time and do my own little thing all by myself then I walk to catch the bus into the city... We both get our own breakfast and lunches.

This new regime just doesn't feel right, Oh well, it's only for two weeks.

One plus of this new temporary routine is that I have lots of praying time on the bus - horrah. I got to pray for lots of people this morning ;)

Routine, Routine! Wherefore art thou Routine?

What little routines do you have that you would be lost without?

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

my mum


I found out on the weekend that my Mum reads my blog, please say hi to her and maybe then she will comment ;)

love you Mum

these are a few of my favourite things.....

in no particular order:

skiing
the colour purple
SP
my sisters
my family
my friends
cows - esp black and white ones
sun-sets
sun-rises
weekends
the beach
a starry night
chocolate
talking
my heavenly father
24
jennifer knapp CDs

what are a few of your favourite things?

Monday, August 14, 2006

the weekend

SP and I had a lovely weekend, here is a breakdown of what we got up too.

Friday night we just chilled out at home and relaxed, SP was pretty tired after a busy week at work, we both spoke to our grandparents, I called mine in England. It was quite an emotional chat with mine as my Nan is pretty sick and my Gan-Gan is spending a lot of time looking after her. There were lots of tears but it was good to speak with them, I both look forward and am apprehensive to see them in December I know my Nan will have changed both physically, due to her meds and mentally as she has a form of dementure which is getting worse and worse. But I think the hardest thing is knowing that they don't know the Lord, it breaks my heart to know that. I pray that this trip SP and I might have an opportunity to talk to them about our faith and our relationship with God.

Saturday we got up and drove 2 hours to Newcastle which is up on the central coast, we went to spend some time with a childhood friend of Scott's and his wife. It was such a lovely weekend, the sun was shining and so we decided to go to the Hunter Valley (I love it there), we went for lunch and then we did some wine tasting. It was also challenging as they are not Christians and they are actually quite "anti" Christian, they don't really understand and Mark has seen such change in Scott that it has affected their relationship. I managed to talk to Mark's wife a little bit about 'my values' and about why I choose to do things a particular way because of my faith. She finds it amazing that SP and I didn't live together before we were married, so I try to use these times to explain a little bit why we live life like we do but I haven't gotten around to talking through the whole Two Ways To Live explanation of Christianity or anything. I am not sure where to begin or how to start. Gabe has written a post on this at the same time as I have been thinking about sharing my faith. It's hard as I don't know this couple very well at all so to just bombard them with what I believe and why in their own home is hard BUT I see their real need to know God personally and so need to pray through ways in which I can express it and share it given their obvious dislike of Christianity - suggestions are welcome.

Sunday was another beautiful day, I almost got panda eyes:

sun and sunglasses and no sunscreen = potential panda eyes = not a good look

But it's the middle of winter I tell myself, in England you would never catch the sun out in winter, you are lucky to see the sun in summer let alone winter.

Anyhoo, we drove to a little place on Lake Macquarie to have lunch with Mark's parents, it was beautiful there and it was where we spent two nights of our honeymoon so it was nice to go back. We travelled home and went to church that evening to hear a great sermon by Dominic on Hypocrisy. I got to sit next to the lovely Hannah and see some of my beautiful friends before heading home to do my hours worth of shoulder exercises (yawn)..

Now it's Monday morning and I am back at work ;( Come quickly next weekend!

Friday, August 11, 2006

refine me

Last weekend I went to pick up all of my Christian CDs that I haven't had in Australia for about 18 months, I had put them all on my iPod before I left England and then after about 6 months of being here I 'accidently' deleted them all - I know I know, silly me.. So anyhoo, my friend came over from England in February and left some of my books and most of my Christian CDs at her Mum's house (she is actually Australian and just married a Brit). SP and I finally got around to picking them up last weekend and it has been such a delight to listen to some of my favourite CDs. Jennifer Knapp is probably one of my favourites and as I was listening to her Kansas album, the words of this song really struck me:

Refine Me Lyrics

I come into this place
Burning to receive your peace
I come with my own chains
From wars I've fought for my own selfish gain
You're my God and my Father
I've accepted your Son
But my soul feels so empty now
What have I become?

Lord, come with your fire,
Burn my desires; refine me
Lord, my will has deceived me
Please come and free me
Refine me

My heart can't see
When I only look at me
My soul can't hear
When I only think of my own fears
They are gone in a moment
You're forever the same
Why did I look away from You
How can I speak Your name?

Lord, come with Your fire,
burn my desires; refine me
Lord, my will has deceived me
Please come and free me
Come rescue this child
For I long to be reconciled to You

It's all I can do
To give my heart and soul to You
And pray, and pray, oh I will pray

Lord, come with Your fire,
burn my desires; refine me
Lord, my will has deceived me
Please come and free me
Come rescue this child
For I long to be reconciled to You

Refine me, refine me
Refine me, refine me

Jennifer Knapp - Kansas


What a great song to sing to our God!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

peanut butter


Crunchy or Smooth?

why did they build the great wall of china?

I love the advert on TV at the moment which has the little boy in the back of the car and his Dad driving. It is advertising broadband internet (find the right answers on the internet for your kids questions), their little conversation goes like this:

Boy - "Dad, why did they build the Great Wall of China?"

Dad - "Is was in the time of Emperor Nasi Goreng and it was to keep the rabbits out............. too many rabbits in China"

Next scene has the little boy standing up in front of his class mates about to give his talk on China. Oh no!

What a funny ad, I am sure most of you have seen it but it cracks me up everytime.

Monday, August 07, 2006

psalm 103

I do love working for a Christian organisation, this morning when we had our little staff meeting one of my colleagues read us a Psalm which had encouraged her this weekend, I hope it also encourages you.


Praise the LORD, O my soul;
all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
Praise the LORD, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits-
who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
The LORD works righteousness
and justice for all the oppressed.
He made known his ways to Moses,
his deeds to the people of Israel:
The LORD is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.
He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;
he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
As a father has compassion on his children,
so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;
for he knows how we are formed,
he remembers that we are dust.
As for man, his days are like grass,
he flourishes like a flower of the field;
the wind blows over it and it is gone,
and its place remembers it no more.
But from everlasting to everlasting
the LORD's love is with those who fear him,
and his righteousness with their children's children-
with those who keep his covenant
and remember to obey his precepts.
The LORD has established his throne in heaven,
and his kingdom rules over all.
Praise the LORD, you his angels,
you mighty ones who do his bidding,
who obey his word.
Praise the LORD, all his heavenly hosts,
you his servants who do his will.
Praise the LORD, all his works
everywhere in his dominion.
Praise the LORD, O my soul.

Psalm 103

Saturday, August 05, 2006

what kind of monkey is that?


About a week after I first arrived in Australia I went on a Christian camp with church. During the night I had heard some loud noises outside and wondered what is was. The next morning I woke up and asked the other girls in my room, "What kind of monkeys do you have here, I heard them last night" KF replied "we don't have any monkeys here", I continued "But I heard them last night" and KF insisted "There really are no monkeys here". I carried on determined "But they went like this, OOH OOH AHH AHH"
Then there was hysterical laughter "It's not monkeys you can hear, it's Kookaburra's"

DOH.... How was I suppose to know huh, I am a city girl from London. As you can imagine (and probably rightly so) I have NEVER lived that down.

I can hear a Kookaburra now, I think it is probably one of my most favourite sounds now.

What sounds do you love hearing?

Friday, August 04, 2006

home owners

Yes, it's official SP and I are now owners of a cute little unit. Today we did the "signing of the contract" ceremony, this is where you sit for 45 minutes to an hour reading through a thouroughly boring BUT highly important document called "the contract".

So now the contracts have been "exchanged" and we are now the proud owners of a little home. We get to move in in ten weeks, mid October if all goes well.

I am very exciting but also a bit overwhelmed, it's a big decision. I can't wait to move and start "nesting".

SP and I are going out to dinner tonight to celebrate.

Sorry, not sure why I have gone """"""" "nuts". Excuse me!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

c s lewis


"I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else."

the english language is a funny thing - part 2

Let's face it - English is a crazy language.

There is no egg in eggplant, nor ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple. English muffins weren't invented in England or French fries in France. We take English for granted. But if we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.

And why is it that writers write but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce and hammers don't ham? If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn't the plural of booth, beeth? One goose, 2 geese. So one moose, 2 meese? One index, 2 indices?

Doesn't it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend? If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it?

If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat? Sometimes I think all the English speakers should be committed to an asylum for the verbally insane. In what language do people recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship? Have noses that run and feet that smell?

How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites? You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out and in which, an alarm goes off by going on.

English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the creativity of the human race, which, of course, is not a race at all. That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible.

PS. - Why doesn't "Buick" rhyme with "quick"

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

my chicken wings hurt


I have been having some problems with my shoulder since January this year. About 6 weeks ago I went to the doctors had x-rays and ultra sounds which turned out clear. My doctor then referred me to a physio who is now working with me to get my shoulder better. I have some tendinitis in the shoudler, have lost muscle definition so am really weak and have something wrong with my chicken wings (I think you might call them shoulder blades). Good news is it isn't too serious and he has given me exercises to do at home, the bad news is it has to be done EVERYDAY and it takes me 50 MINS. I have been doing it for 3 weeks and am a little over it by now. I have at least 3 more weeks to go so please pray I might be disciplined in getting them done. It really is quite a bore, but at the same time I know it's good for me ;)