Thursday, November 30, 2006

A Few Congrats ...

The Most Delicious "Bob" House in the Planet!

I took the picture above when I was in Korea earlier this year, but never got around to posting it. It's a photo that I wanted to dedicate to my life-long buddy Bobby Lee, who recently returned from a trip to Korea after decades of being away from the motherland. He and I were fellow "twinkies" growing up who couldn't speak Korean to save our lives ... and to my shock, after his visit to Korea, he is now getting into K-Pop and dramas (!) Oh man, that was a shocker.

When I took this photo, a worker came outside asking why I was taking a picture of his restaurant. I tired to explain (in my very fluent Korean ... ahem ...) that my friend's name is up there. As I was walking away, he kept staring at the roof trying to figure out what I was so interested in. Well Bob, it was just so I could get this picture for you =)

Happy BDay to EBae

A huge "Happy Birthday" to my buddy and partner in the Gospel, EBae. Your friendship has been a gift and a delight. Hope this next year is one of deeper growth for your faith and hope you can hurry up and finish your thesis ASAP! Have a great one and have fun exploring more of your backyard with your fellow Melbournians.

To My Favorite Mike and Jane Couple

And a final congrats (at least for today) to Mike and Jane Kim who will be getting married this Saturday! I can't believe how much you two have grown these past few years. I'm amazed and so happy to see how your passion for Christ and commitment to His Kingdom has matured and deepened. And I'm so glad that you two love each other so much and will be serving the Lord together as husband and wife in just a few short days. May God prepare you well for a lifetime of missions and may God use you greatly to glorify God and expand the Kingdom of God greatly within your lifetime ... and beyond.

Currently Listening
Rattle and Hum
By U2
In God's Country

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Final Stretch

To celebrate a great year of partnership, CB and Deep Surface (DS) had a nice appreciation dinner over the weekend at Hurricane's. As we head into the final stretch of our year, I want to say that I'm very proud of all the staff members and volunteers of CB Australia. It was great working with each person and it was an honor to be able to help His people in China and N*K* within a short amount of time.

I also have to say that Deep Surface has been amazing to work with. Their commitment to excellence and professionalism in all they did was wonderful to see. Not only did we strive to help each other succeed, an added blessing was to see the new friendship between us form. So if you need a great media/product line company, DS comes highly recommended!

Currently Watching
U218 Singles
By U2
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Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving!

With the US celebrating Thanksgiving and the country beginning the wonderful holiday season, I'd like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and hope your list is endless in terms of things to be thankful for. Though this year was one of the toughest years of my life, it's also a year I'm extremely thankful for.

* I'm thankful that God provided a sabbatical year of rest and restoration. I would have never planned it into my schedule, so I'm glad that God did! Through it I learned a lot about myself, both good and bad ... showing me how much I need Him and His grace each moment of my life. God showed me areas I needed to grow in as a son, a husband, a leader, a follower, a sheep, a shepherd, a servant ... I'm thankful for the challenges that both revealed and refined my character ... and for those that are still shaping me to this day.

* I'm thankful for faithful friends who have stuck beside me with prayer, laughter and meals throughout the year. God provided just the right gatherings at just the right times when I needed a community to connect with again. I'm thankful a certain couple who will be getting married soon because the marriage prep sessions became such a source of blessing and encouragement to me these past few months. I think I gained more out of those times together, even though it was for you!

"I thank my God every time I remember you." Philippians 1:3

* I'm thankful for gift of technology. Through Skype, Gmail, and Blogs, it was a wonderful year of re-connecting with old friends and finding new ones that have added great value to my life this year. I'm thankful for my family members around the world who pray for me and always sound so happy when I call them =) It was a great year to learn that faith and family really are the most important things in life.

"I thank my God every time I remember you."

* Most of all, I'm thankful that God is faithful even when we are not. That He is gracious, surrounding us with presents instead of punishment every day of our lives ... that He is merciful, not giving to me according to my sins ... I'm thankful that He is good ... loving ... and in control. I'm thankful that God is happy and that He loves when we share in His happiness. And I'm thankful that though I don't know what the future holds, You do ... for You hold the future in Your hands and all things that come from Your hand are good and beautiful in your sight.

And to my good and faithful God: "I thank my God every time I remember you."

Currently Listening
By U2
The First Time

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Good Times

It's been a good month for me so far. God provided some cool opportunities (both planned and unplanned) to re-connect with a lot of great friends and partners that I haven't seen in quite awhile. And most recently, I had a great time catching up with Keith and Sharon, fellow Americans living in Sydney, over the weekend.


We actually share some unique things in common. Both of us met our spouses in Korea. Both of us, after getting married, have spent most of our married lives in Sydney. Both of us have family and friends in Chicago and Arizona. And for me and Keith, both of us miss and love talking football! It was also nice to share some things (both joys and struggles) that only expatriates experience while living in a foreign country. And we shared U2 pictures and videos from the concert a couple weeks ago. U2 must still be on my mind because last night I had a dream that I met them and had to show them around the city =)


Also this past weekend CB and Deep Surface did a follow up presentation at a local church on recent projects that were supported. Looking back on this year, I realize that CD and DS has had quite a great partnership helping each other succeed in our various causes. I'll post a video that DS created in regards to their CB partnership later on.

Dallas Cowboys

And "how 'bout them Cowboys!" The Dallas Cowboys beat the last undefeated team of the year on Sunday. The Cowboys topped the Colts 21-14 and showed a new spark under the new leadership of Tony Romo. Though I feel bad for Drew Bledsoe, it was a great move by Parcells and just in time too. They now look like the Super Bowl contenders people predicted at the beginning of the season. For fantasy football players, if you picked up Romo and/or Marion Barber III (their touchdown machine), you picked a couple of surprise winners for your league. I've been extremely impressed at the maturity and poise of Tony Romo. He's impressed coaches with his preparation during the week and then performs nearly to perfection on game day. A great attitude, a great work ethic ... a solid leader. Oh man, I hope they win it all this year.

Currently Listening
By U2

Friday, November 17, 2006

What Only God Can Do

A word of encouragement ...

And a surprise country that was featured in this week's Voice of Martyrs prayer requests:

AUSTRALIA Girl Who Rejected Islam Now Facing False Murder Charges - ASSIST News Australian media reports that on October 9th, 17-year-old Kaihana Hussain was attacked with a knife by her father, Dr Mohammed Hussain, after she reiterated her commitment to convert from Islam to Christianity.

According to the reports, Kaihana's mother was fatally stabbed when she tried to intervene, and her father attempted to kill himself after Kaihana escaped the apartment. Police confirmed at the time that Kaihana was not a suspect. Dr Hussain survived, and now alleges that Kaihana stabbed her mother to death and attempted to murder him because they disapproved of her boyfriend. Kaihana was subsequently arrested and faced a court on November 7, where she was charged with murder and attempted murder.

She did not speak and no plea was entered. Kaihana Hussain remains in custody until her trial, which has been slated for May 22, 2007. Pray God will reveal the truth in this matter and Kaihana will be set free. Matthew 10:26

Currently Listening
All That You Can't Leave Behind
By U2
Beautiful Day

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Confessions of a U2 Fan

Alright, so U2 had their first concert in Sydney on Friday and then their second one on Saturday. But their 3rd concert was on Monday, leaving Sunday as their "day off". So I'm thinking that since it's been over 10 years since they last came to Sydney, they'd have to visit the Opera House and various other key spots in the city. So what do I do after church on Sunday? I spend several hours on the look out for U2 in the city.

But after exhausting my legs in the search, I decided it's time to go home. A little sad that I couldn't create a chance meeting with my favorite band of all time, I head home and then one block before I get home, a huge vehicle stops in front of me ... I look up and who do I see? Larry, Adam, Bono and the Edge. That's right. U2! Right in front of me!

Gift 1

But sadly, no, it wasn't U2 in person, but it was a truck with a HUGE banner promoting their new "best-of" album that's coming out next week. And then the truck driver gets out of the truck to visit a near-by ATM and lets me take a ton of photos next to the truck, on the truck, behind the truck ... you get the idea. Wow, that totally made my day. I felt like it was God's small gift to me Sunday afternoon =) Hee hee ...

Gift 2

Anyways ... another great gift for me was seeing my good buddy EBae (Eric Bae) from Melbourne on Monday. It was good catching up with someone who was a great "go-to" guy for me in ministry and someone I was blessed to see grow so much over the years. He's a cherished partner in the Gospel who was always went above and beyond what was expected of him. I miss partnering with him, but I was thankful to hear that he and his gang in Melbourne are pushing each other to stay faithful to Christ and are sharpening each other each day. Hurry up with your Ph.D bro and come back to Sydney ASAP! =)

Podcasts Updated

And on a final note, my podcasts for memory verses and sermons are updated for the week. Enjoy! And may the favor of God rest upon you this week!

Currently Listening
By U2

Monday, November 13, 2006

U2 Concert in Sydney 11.10.06

Sorry for the delay, but it took awhile to upload all the videos. :)

Here's the set list with links to some video clips from the actual concert:

Main Set

City of Blinding Lights [complete song + Vertigo intro]
Vertigo [short clip]
Until The End of the World [short clip with Edge]
New Year's Day
Beautiful Day [most of the song + clip 1] [clip 2] [clip 3]
Yahweh [most of the song]
Walk On
Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own [complete song]
Love and Peace
Sunday Bloody Sunday [short clip of "no more"]
Bullet The Blue Sky [short clip]
Miss Sarajevo
Pride (In The Name of Love)
Where The Streets Have No Name [Intro + short clip]
SMS Fight for Poverty [clip 1 + clip 2]
One [short clips]

Encore 1

Zoo Station [short clip]
The Fly [Intro + Ending]
With or Without You [complete song + clip 1 + clip 2]
SMS Thanks [The names of those who texted]

Encore 2

The Saints Are Coming [short clip]
Angel of Harlem [complete song + clip 1 + clip 2]
Kite [complete song]

Back to Him

It was simply awesome. U2 are an amazing live concert band so it was totally worth the 8 month (!) wait. It was possibly the fastest 4 hours of my life ... and it was cool to be surrounded by other die-hard fans to sing along with for every single song.

And as usual, there's always at least one powerful spiritual moment for me when I hear them live ... this time around it was during their songs "Yahweh" (with 70,000 crying out to God) and "Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own" ... truly a worshipful moment for me. I can't wait till heaven (or maybe sooner?!?!) when I can meet them and do some songs together, praising our Savior (hopefully Edge will let me play guitar with him!).

Currently Listening
Saints Are Coming
By U2 & Green Day
The Saints Are Coming

Thursday, November 09, 2006

U2 in Sydney Tomorrow Baby!

Where the Streets Have No Name

FINALLY!!!! :) I am super excited right now!! :) They rocked the Gold Coast Tues night and are now heading to Sydney. The video above is one of my favorite songs of all time ... and an awesome reminder of heaven. And it's one of my favorite versions of the song too, performed at the Super Bowl after 9/11. There's more to U2 than just awesome music. For a closer look, here are some links: Interview with 60 Minutes, Interview with ABC, Interview with Australia's NINE.

In the City of Blinding Lights

Currently Listening
How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb (Deluxe)
By U2

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

A 10 Minute Feast for Your Soul

The Supremacy of Christ


This is an invigorating way to spend 10 minutes of your day :) This video clip brings waves of worship and strength to my inner being. I hope it does for you as well. A couple of things to keep in prayer ... obviously the whole Ted Haggard scandal that's rocked the evangelical world this past week.


Man, every time I hear of pastors falling it saddens my soul so deeply ... and brings with it a splash of cold water to my face, reminding me how weak we are apart from Christ and that there is an enemy out to steal, kill and destroy all who hold allegiance to Christ. My prayers go out for him, his family, his congregation and for those who have grown cynical to Christ because of the Church's sins (including mine). May God bring healing and restoration to His servants and to our witness in this world.


Another thing to keep in prayer would be the nations that are in need of leaders who will lead with justice and truth. Recently, there was a study done that revealed the most corrupt governments in the world. When the righteous thrive, the people rejoice; when the wicked rule, the people groan. [Proverbs 29:2] Interesting to see which countries are getting better and which are getting worse (USA!).

U2 Baby!

And I shall end today on a happy note. It's an exciting week for me with U2 finally in Australia! They began their Vertigo Tour again last night in Brisbane and I'll be heading over to their first Sydney show this Friday. I'm so excited. Seeing them in the news and getting interviewed all over television here, the excitement level is building with every passing day. 2 days and counting! =)

Currently Listening
The Joshua Tree
By U2
Where the Streets Have No Name

Monday, November 06, 2006

Sea U Later

Researchers have calculated that at the rate we're going, we only have about 50 years left before we deplete the world of seafood as we know it! So by the year 2048 (yes, within OUR lifetime!), bye-bye beloved crabs ... and most things "under the sea". I can't believe we can bring an end to a whole genre of food/species ... and that future generations won't be able to enjoy it. What was my first thought? "I gotta find me some crabs!" And my second thought? "I'm going to have to find a way to farm my own crabs somewhere." :p

But it is a sad statement on our generation and what we've done to the environment. And if you've seen the movie/documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" by Al Gore, you know that our generation has a bigger responsibility beyond just seafood. We're potentially on the point of no return in terms of what we're doing to the environment around the world.

We're really living in the last days ... in all aspects. And on a final note, I updated my podcasts for weekly memory verses and sermons. I'm glad to hear that some people have been benefiting from the various podcasts. I'll be starting from my 2002 sermons from this week and eventually work my way back to 2006 ... hoping to archive everything online ... eventually.

Currently Listening
Achtung Baby
By U2
The Fly

Friday, November 03, 2006

Here I Am to Worship ...

One thing I have come to miss greatly throughout my sabbatical in Australia has been the ability to find a balanced place of worship where both the praise and the preaching is Christ-centered and Biblically sound. With the abundance of good churches in America, I think it would be difficult for the average Christian in America to realize that even in a free country like Australia there is a massive drought happening. It's not a country in the 10/40 Window nor is it a country where believers are persecuted. Rather, Australia is a wealthy, Western, "free", "Christian" country (though less than 10% of the population goes to a service on Sundays).

The teaching ministries of the internet and books have taken on a whole new level of importance for my life this year. At times I've felt like I'm living in an unreached nation ... which has created deep thirst and hunger pangs on a weekly basis. So the clips from books and sermons and videos I share have become more than just blogging ... it's become an expression of my fight to keep the passions of my heart burning ... as well as to sharpen and challenge myself so that I might finish this race well. As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another (Proverbs 27:17). I thank God for those who sharpen me.

If you have a corporate place of worship to attend this weekend where you're soul is fed and and your spirit uplifted, consider yourself extremely blessed. May you be filled with thanksgiving for that congregation and may there be many prayers of intercession for its leaders. And if you have a heart for church-planting, I ask that Australia and its major cities (Sydney, Melbourne, etc.) be in your prayers, and that more workers be raised and sent to this nation. Like Ezekiel 37, the surroundings are very dry ... and also like Ezekiel 37, only You Lord can breathe new life into the people.

And to leave you with something enjoyable for the weekend, here's a clip a cute baby who can't stop laughing. It's pretty adorable. Well ... have a great weekend of worship ... and may your love for Christ grow stronger as a result.

Currently Listening
Sometimes You Can't Make It on Your Own
By U2
Sometimes You Can't Make It on Your Own

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Piper ... the Good and Bad

This (When I Don't Desire God) is my next book I'm going to have to re-read and dissect some more. Piper's one of my "go-to" guys in terms of reigniting the passions of my heart and to check to see if I'm properly focused. I thank God for people like him who function as arrows to point us back to Christ. People who can sharpen our focus, clear the clutter, and remind us again why God gave us life on earth ... O, to have more arrows for Christ in this world! O, that I would have the honor of being an arrow. And O to believe and manifest in my life that Christ really is ALL ... and everything.

And on a lighter note concerning Piper, someone edited Michael Jackson's song:"Bad" and combined it with a Piper sermon. Then someone makes a video version for YouTube. What's the result? "John Piper is Bad". I got a kick out of it :)

And Firefox 2.0 is out now and available for download. It's a much superior browser to Internet Explorer. If you haven't switched over yet, give it a try ... IE has been trying to change and catch up to Firefox since its release. While new versions of both browsers were released recently, for the first time, Firefox is leading in downloads ... so make the switch and have a more enjoyable internet experience. In a lot of ways (esp. thanks to Google and Firefox), it looks like the once mighty Microsoft is heading for a fall ... who would of thought several years ago they would lose their edge so quickly.

Currently Reading
Hearing God's Voice
By Henry T. Blackaby, Richard Blackaby
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