25 July 2012

Worthy Is The Lamb - Darlene Zschech

Genesis 22:6-8 (NLT)
6Abraham placed the wood for the burnt offering on Isaac's shoulders, while he himself carried the knife and the fire. As the two of them went on together, 7Isaac said, "Father?"
"Yes, my son," Abraham replied.
"We have the wood and the fire," said the boy, "but where is the lamb for the sacrifice?"
8"God will provide a lamb, my son," Abraham answered. And they both went on together.

John 1:29 (NLT)
29The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look! There is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!

1 Peter 1:19 (NLT)
19He paid for you with the precious lifeblood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God

Revelation 5:12 (NLT)
12And they sang in a mighty chorus:
"The Lamb is worthy--the Lamb who was killed.
He is worthy to receive power and riches
and wisdom and strength
and honor and glory and blessing."

22 July 2012

Lorne - The Pier

The next morning, we did a little walk along the beach, to walk off the big breakfast we had at the hotel. Along the way we took a self-potrait of ourselves. Can you spot us?

Set against the lush Otway rainforest, this seaside town of Lorne was the first place to be declared an area of ‘natural beauty and significance’ by the Victorian government. How they come to determine that, I have no idea. However, I'm glad they did.

With the seaside setting and waters of Louttit Bay, the bustling cafe culture even in winter and the picturesque setting, there is little doubt why Lorne is one of the most popular holiday destinations in regional Victoria. After all, it is only 140kms south west of Melbourne.

The approach into town along the Great Ocean Road is truly spectacular, with the mountain scenery of the Otways on one side and the rugged Bass Strait coast on the other.

Lorne was established in 1871 and it quickly became popular with pastoralists from inland areas, leading to its development around the picturesque Louttit Bay. When the Great Ocean Road opened in 1932 Lorne became much more accessible; yet the area has remained relatively unspoiled with good beaches, surfing, fishing and bushwalking in the hills.

From the beach near the hotel, we could see Lorne's pier, which is at the Western end of Loutit Bay.

The first pier was built in 1879 to serve the logging industry. The pier was also used to land supplies to the small community of Louttit Bay as it was then known. However, as time passes, consultants determined that the old pier was deteriorating and some thing needed to be done. The options were to either fix it or replace it with a new one.

Construction on a new pier started on the 1st March 2006 and was completed almost exactly one year later at a cost of more than $5m. The new pier is nearly 200m long, the same as the old one. It was opened to the public on March 23rd 2007. A short section of the old pier was left as a historical reminder.

What stood out for us while at the pier was seeing a number of people swimming in the cold winter waters. What were they thinking?

I found out later that these people are volunteer life savers who belong to the Lorne Life Saving Club. The club organised and run the "GMHBA Lorne Pier to Pub" open water swim. It is said to be the largest open water swim in the world. If you are interested in such activity, click here to find out more. The actual swim race is held in January in the summer month.

The Lorne Pier to Pub started as an informal challenge among Lorne Surf Life Saving Club members. It's now an action-packed weekend attracting thousands who participate in the race and thousands more others who come just to soak up the carnival atmosphere. Sounds like a good time to come back to Lorne next year.

As with all piers, fishing is a popular activity. Garfish, salmon and barracouta are commonly caught here. Silver trevally, squid and pinkies are also found here.

If you fancy a seafood lunch or dinner, The Lorne Pier Seafood Restaurant is located on the water's edge at the start of the pier. Just next to the restaurant is a place where you can get really fresh fish. Hint, Hint, Blink, Blink.
For more pictures of the Pier, click here.

19 July 2012

Lorne - A Winter Weekend

It winter! While most (sane) people goes to the snow hills during winter to "catch" some snow, doing downhill skiing or cross-country skiing, tobogganing or just to play with the snow, we however did something really different.

We spend a week-end at the seaside town of Lorne, at Louttit Bay. If you are wondering where this seaside town is, it's in Victoria, Australia.

Lorne is situated along a popular tourist destination called the Great Ocean Road. That stretch of the Victorian coast is also known as the Surf Coast Shire. You can alway find something to do along the Great Ocean Road.

We wanted to take some time off to relax and to unwind, to enjoy the cafe culture, cellars, eating spots, shops, boutiques gift stores and galleries in the town and not forgetting also to see some of the area's surroundings. Beside the bay itself, we heard there are several beautiful fern gullies and waterfalls in the area that are worth the walk to.

Lorne is around 140km south-west of Melbourne. Passing through Geelong, the drive to Lorne via the scenic coastal route is 65 km. The route gives you the opportunity to take in the panoramic views as the road winds along the edge of beaches, across river estuaries, cliff tops and lush rainforests. There were many a time I wanted to stop and take some photos of the view, except that the road is narrow and windy; too risky to stop except for some designated scenic lookout spots.

If you are on the way to the 12 Apostles or other coastal attractions along the Great Ocean Road, Lorne is certainly one of the towns worth stopping, to rest and get a bite, especially if there is a farmer's market on the day.

The playground and trampolines are very popular with young children. There is even an outdoor swimming pool, but the pool was emptied since it is too cold to swim in, in winter. Even so, there were a number of children in shorts or short sleeves. They must have forgotten it is winter.

There are plenty of accommodations in town to cater for the summer crowd and in winter, you can certainly get some bargains. That however is a matter of differing opinions. There are some art works and sculptures placed around the town with some colourful home/accommodations and decorated cafes making the town look more like a seaside town.

For more photos of Lorne, click here.

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15 July 2012

How The Holy Spirit Works With The Father And The Son

1 Peter 1:2 (NLT)
2God the Father chose you long ago, and the Spirit has made you holy. As a result, you have obeyed Jesus Christ and are cleansed by his blood. May you have more and more of God's special favor and wonderful peace.
The Holy Spirit has the distinct honour of being one of the three members of the Trinity - the other two members being God the Father and Jesus Christ, His Son. This particular verse shows how the Holy Spirit works with the Father and the Son in the life of a believer:
  1. The Father chooses us and makes us His children.
  2. Jesus redeems us, having died for us while we were still sinners.
  3. The Holy Spirit draws us to the Lord and continues to work in our lives to make us pleasing to God.
As you can see, all three members of the Trinity work in concert to bring us into a relationship with God. For that reason, we see that the Holy Spirit is indeed an integral part of what has been called "the Godhead."

New Believer's Bible
Ps Greg Laurie

11 July 2012

Be Fruitful, Fill The Earth, Subdue It

Genesis 1:27-28 (NIV)
27So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
28God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden of Eden, a place of beauty and peace. They were place there with a mission; to be fruitful and to multiply, to fill the earth and subdue it, that is, to be master over the fish and birds and all the animals.

Adam's children and their children's children were to live under God's rule. They will extend the boundaries of His garden, His Kingdom with kingdom values, to the rest of earth simply by their devotion to Him.

This was God's Original Commission through the first Adam at the time of Genesis and still is today through the last Adam, Jesus in the Great Commission to his disciples.

Matthew 28:18-20 (NIV)
18Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

The Original Commission at the Garden of Eden was never abandoned even after Adam sinned. When sin entered the world, creation has been infected by darkness; manifesting itself as diseases, sickness, poverty, natural disasters, afflicting spirits, demonic influences, etc.

However, in redeeming man at the cross, Jesus retrieved what man (in Adam) had given away. In the process, the Original Commission was fully realized in the resurrection and ascension of Jesus and we, the church as disciples of Christ Jesus, were restored to God's plan as a people made in His image to rule over creation and over darkness.

We do this by preaching the gospel of the Kingdom of God, by being fruitful in making disciples of all nations in all the four corners of the earth, subduing it by having the nations replace their earthly values with the Kingdom of God, kingdom values. This is done as prescribed in Matthew 28:19-20.

By fulfilling the Great Commission, we rule over creation but it is now focused on exposing and undoing the works of the evil one.

Matthew 10:7-8 (NIV)
7As you go, preach this message: 'The kingdom of heaven is near.’
8Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely
you have received, freely give.

07 July 2012

Mt Macedon Memorial Cross - Snow, Foggy and Cold

This posting is last weekend outing, just to do something different from every other weekends and to do it with an overseas friend visiting us. We opted for a day out at Mount Macedon, a small township 64 kilometres northwest of Melbourne. Just about an hour drive.

The Mount Macedon Township was largely established by Melbourne's wealthy elite in the post gold rush era of the mid to late 19th century who used it as a summer retreat.

We've been to this township a year or two ago, but we never did make it to the summit. This time we did.

At the summit of Mount Macedon is a car park and a cafe called the Top of the Range, Tea Rooms and Gallery. About 200 meters from the car park and out of sight from the cafe, is a 21 meter high Memorial Cross which was erected to commemorate Australia’s war fallen. The Memorial Cross is considered to be Victoria’s next significant war memorial after the Shrine of Remembrance. Surrounding it is an extensive native forest of a variety of gum trees which cover the mountain and also surrounds the town.

The view at the cross is said to take in Melbourne city, the Dandenong Ranges, the You Yangs near Geelong, that is, the entire southern plain towards Port Philip Bay. Entry to the Memorial Cross is free.

The day however was not a day for such a view. It was a cold wet foggy wintery day. Nothing of the much talked about view can be seen.

I guess the lesson here is; check the weekend weather forecast before making any plans for the weekend, especially one with the intend of seeing the country landscape, get to a local farmers market, shopping and dining to sample the local produces. Well we did plan to pack the day with activities.

All was not lost however, for we saw our first snow for the year as we were having lunch at the Top of the Range tea room, much to our joy and others at the cafe, especially the children.

For a wet cold snowing and foggy day, it was surprising that the car park was fully parked with a steady stream of people walking to and back from the memorial cross. For more images of the Mt Macedon Memorial Cross, click here.

This video is a short clip showing people enjoying the snow just outside the cafe enterance. On loading this clip onto You Tube, I found that snow has already fallen at Mt Macedon as early as the 24th May.

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