VOTE // BEST GOAL #WORLDCUP 2014

#CAHILL

Brazil 2014 has been a great World Cup so far, great goals, great matches, lots of drama. The round of 16 has just been completed and there are now 8 teams left. I picked 7 of the 8 teams. I’m looking forward to 2 full nights of sleep before the quarter finals start! I thought it would be fun to vote on the best goal of the tournament so far. It won’t take long…

ZOE’S STORY // WHERE LIFE BEGINS & ENDS

When Helen Thomas was 19 weeks pregnant she was told that her baby was ‘incompatible with life’ and was advised to abort, but she and her husband decided not to have an abortion. Helen spoke to Simon Smart about her reasons for not having an abortion and the remarkable story of her daughter Zoe.

An extraordinary story from The Centre for Public Christianity.

DEAR @SOCCEROOS, WATCH THIS VIDEO OF @NEDZELIC FROM 1991 AND THEN BEAT THE DUTCH AGAIN. LOVE FROM AUSTRALIA

#GOSOCCEROOS

Dear Socceroos,

In 1991, Ned Zelic scored two goals to beat the Dutch and qualify for the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. The second goal was one of those “wonder goals”. Some of you may not remember it because you weren’t yet born. I remember it, I was 11 years old. We watched replays on BTN at school; and we tried to mimic Zelic at soccer training. In case you missed it, here’s a video:

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AMERICA, IT’S TIME FOR #GUNCONTROL

#GUNCONTROL

I’m not sure if “America” will read this blog post, but I do know that there are regularly Americans who read this blog. So if that’s you, please pass it on to the rest of your country.

Whatever your opinion on the politics of former Australian Prime Minister John Howard, his bold leadership on gun control in 1996 is an important legacy. In the wake of the Port Arthur massacre, when 35 people were killed, Howard brought in sweeping gun reforms. These reforms have changed Australia for the better.

It was good to hear that US President Barrack Obama mentioned Australia’s example in being tough on guns after another school shooting in the US. I’m saddened with every new report of more school shootings in the States and baffled by how easy it is to get a high powered gun. Just get rid of the Second Amendment from the Constitution, amend it out of there! I hope and pray Obama has the bullets to stand up and lead.

I’m not sure if you’ve seen these 3 videos, they were shared around via social media last year, but they are worth watching. John Oliver compiled them for The Daily Show, and they show how government-mandated gun control actually can work. He highlights the political leadership of Howard (as well as Tim Fischer and Rob Borbidge) in bringing about the changes.

See below for the 3 part series:
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KAKÁ RESPONDS TO BEING LEFT OUT OF THE #BRAZIL2014 #WORLDCUP TEAM

He helped lead the Brazilian National Football (Soccer) team to the 2002 World Cup Championship. Over the last 12 years he has played on two more Brazilian World Cup squads, was considered the best professional player in the sport (2007), and on multiple occasions worked to overcome serious injuries just to get back into the lineup. He played with no fear.

With the 2014 World Cup games to be hosted by Brazil it was time for this soccer legend to return home and bask in the spotlight. But Ricardo Izecson dos Santos Leite, commonly known as Kaká, would not get that moment. Still battling injuries, and for reasons known only by the Brazilian coach, Kaká was left off the 23-man squad for the 2014 Cup.

What is Kaká’s response? Discouragement? Controversy? Devastation? Uncertainty? Or something else?

From I Am Second.

NIKE FOOTBALL: THE LAST GAME // FT. RONALDO, NEYMAR JR., ROONEY, ZLATAN, INIESTA & MORE #BRAZIL2014 #WORLDCUP

Did you miss my videos last week to get you warmed up for the World Cup? Go check them here. And above is another one. Nike Football are known for producing excellent videos, especially at the time of the World Cup. This one is great.

Disclaimer: soccer is good, but not God. It used to be the other way for me. But the message of some of these Nike football videos is a message that could easily apply to Christians. “Risk Everything” is something Christians should do for the sake of Jesus and His Kingdom! He is someone worth losing everything for. Play every game as if it’s the last game? Live every day as if it’s your last (see # 52).

Sorry for the spiritual content on this World Cup post. Actually, #SorryNotSorry :)

CITIZENS ALBUM IS FREE ON NOISETRADE

citizens-citizens

Citizens are one of the most exciting bands making music for Christians to sing as they gather. Based in the local church, Mars Hill, many of their songs have grown out of Bible teaching in their church and make much of Jesus. Creatively they are producing a distinct, yet singable sound.

I’ve posted 3 of their films clips here, here and here. I recently recommended one of their songs in a post on newish songs to sing in church. And I included their Christmas EP as one that doesn’t suck. It’s safe to conclude I’m a fan :)

You can now download their debut album for FREE from via Noisetrade.

(If you’re young and cash-less… go crazy on the “free” part! If you’ve got cash, I reckon the album is worth a tip)

The Free download is for a limited time only.

WARM-UP FOR #BRAZIL2014 #WORLDCUP

#WORLDCUP

The FIFA World Cup 2014 is only a week away! My calendar is locked and loaded with important games throughout the middle of the night. The following are some #WorldCup related videos to help you warm-up for the greatest sporting event in the world:

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GUILTY PLEASURE // RAISING AWARENESS OF THE HARMFUL EFFECTS OF PORN

guilty-pleasures

It’s not just religious nuts who think that pornography is harmful. Today I heard Dr William Struthers, a neurologist from the USA, speak on the harmful impact porn has on the brain. He is in Australia doing some events during June with non profit Guilty Pleasure. This was my first introduction to Guilty Pleasure, but it looks like they have some really valuable resources on this topic.

Here’s some more info from their about page:

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5 NEWISH SONGS FOR CHURCH

newish-songs

On the look out for some new tunes to sing at church? Below are some newish songs we’ve recently done at church, youth or I’ve sung at other places. I haven’t heard the final one by Kings Kaleidoscope done anywhere, but I think it would work. Let me know in the comments of any others you think are worth checking out. Here they are:

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A TALE OF TWO PHOTOGRAPHS

A-TALE-OF-TWO-PHOTOGRAPHS

This post was partially written two months ago and I only just found it in my blog drafts. Why the delay in publishing? Our delightful daughter was born a few hours after the draft was last saved! Although the two photographs aren’t as current as they were then, I think it’s still a relevant tale worth sharing.

Two photos, both released within the same week, part of two radically different narratives. One taken of hungry people desperate for food in a war-torn country. The other of glamorous people desperate for attention in a celebrity-worn country.

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HOST A TAKE LOVE EVENT // #TAKELOVE

ANGLICARE Sydney and Fervr.net invite you to host a TAKE LOVE EVENT in June 2014!

Host an event in your youth ministry, school or Christian group and join us as we pray for ASYLUM SEEKERS and REFUGEES and the issues they face in our world.

For more information and to register go to: takelove.com.au

I love some of the youth initiatives that are coming out of Anglicare. At Soulies we plan on hosting a #TakeLove event on Friday 20th June and then following it up on the Saturday with some #TakeLove projects.

More related links:

LEVEL-UP // #ESCAPETOREALITY

LEVEL-UP

Movies, entertainment, celebrity culture, video games, digital media and social networks are often used to escape from reality. The goal of this 4-part series is to consider how to escape to the reality that comes in knowing Jesus.

Part 4 of #EscapeToReality

THE GAMIFICATION OF LIFE

I recently learnt about an emerging trend called the gamification of life. It’s basically turning life into a game complete with points, incentives and levels. 1 point for cleaning your teeth. 5 points for taking rubbish out. 10 points for inbox zero. 20 points for doing your most dreaded tasks. After a certain number of points, you can reward yourself or somehow move onto the next level.

From the examples I’ve read online, it looks like a useful way to get things done!

Using little incentives is not just for those “gamifying” their life, we use all sorts of little incentives in different ways. Maybe if you complete a certain amount of study you’ll get to go for a surf. Or if you achieve this goal, you’ll treat yourself to something special.

When it comes to the Christian life, followers of Jesus don’t need to create little incentives and rewards. There is a bigger incentive and motivation.

DO NOT LOSE HEART

In 2 Corinthians 4 the big goal of the Christian life is to “not lose heart”. It’s the idea of preserving until the end in the Christian life. Like a runner lasting to the end of the race, the Christian is to keep going and keep trusting Jesus.

In this series ‘Escape to reality’ I have argued that movies, entertainment, celebrity culture, video games, digital media and social networks are often used to escape from reality.

My biggest goal has been to show that we all need to escape to the reality that comes in knowing Jesus.

This passage one of best “escape to reality” passages in bible. It will help us to see the forest from the trees.

It’s easy to get caught up on the here and now. We are so easily distracted by the things in front of us: the smartphone, gaming console, the guy or girl you’re interested in. But we fail to see the bigger picture of eternity.

2 Corinthians 4:16-18 will help us to see the big picture and give us the ultimate level-up.

There are three things that we see will give us the persecutive so that we will not lose heart.
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GREATEST COMEDY SKETCH OF ALL TIME?

Abbott & Costello’s* routine – Who’s on First – would have to be the great comedy sketch of all time. Don’t you think? The routine is a brilliant play on words with confusion over the names of baseball players. It’s quite a long script, but worth enduring because of the quality of the word play.

What do you think? Other contenders for greatest comedy sketch of all time? Feel free to leave a video in the comments, probably best to keep it PG.

*not to be confused with the current Prime Minister and former Treasurer of Australia…

#SNIPPETY // #ANZAC #EASTER #NIGERIA #KIDNAPPING #RETWEETS #PARENTING #SNAPCHAT #KILLCLIPART

#SNIPPETY

A mix of articles and resources in this latest #Snippety. I’m not quite sure how to title these posts. The last one received lots of hits because of (inadvertently) leading with homosexuality. This post is all hashtags. If you have an opinion on #Snippety titles, let me know.

Retweeting compliments is one of the most annoying things from friends and acquaintances on twitter! So if that’s you, read the 3rd article! Also – if you see me do it, you have permission to call me out on it!! Peace.

Anzac And Easter 2014 – Phillip Jensen

Christians, together with all sane people, find no joy in war. Peace, not war, must always be our goal. Yet when war is necessary those who take up arms on our behalf must be supported and respected. When they are injured in the course of such action they should be confident of our nation’s assistance. When they are killed, we should give thanks to God for their sacrifice, and maintain fitting memorials to remind us, and future generations, of the cost of our freedom.

234 girls were abducted last week. Why aren’t we talking about them?

Stolen from their boarding school by gunmen in the middle of the night. Packed into the back of open lorries as the buildings around them were burned to the ground… A handful of the teenage girls escaped by hiding in a dangerous nearby forest; others jumped from the lorries in their desperation to escape.

TO RETWEET OR NOT TO RETWEET: THE QUESTION OF RETWEETING COMPLIMENTS

I propose we stop the bad habit of retweeting compliments, and then perhaps move the conversation forward as we spill some ink (pixels?) on more edifying subjects like dealing with the underlying sin in our hearts that rises up whenever we read (let alone retweet) such compliments.

Cyber Parenting on snapchat

It’s the app where every message is meant to self-destruct. But is snapchat a suitable program for your children?

Lightstock – Say Goodbye to Clipart

Faith-Focused, Cheesy-Free Stock Photos & Footage

Peace.