Category: Creative

Song leading at GAFCON Jerusalem 2018

At Gafcon Jerusalem 2018, I was privileged to lead the music on the Friday sessions.

On that day, I taught an ‘Aussie’ version of the hymn, ‘How Great Thou Art’.

For those who asked, here are the lyrics to the new verse:

When through the bush and on the beach I wander,
and hear the birds sing loudly in the trees.
When I look out across the vast horizon,
behold the land that stretches sea to sea.

Special thanks to Graham Stanton for first crowd sourcing the songwriting via Facebook, and to all who contributed to bring the lyrics to their final canonical form.


Over the past year I’ve been busily snapping away on my stimulus-package-supported Canon EOS 450 Enthusiast Kit.

I’ve compiled a collection of my favourite photos for you to enjoy.

Since Steve White inspired me to shoot RAW in October, I’ve been having a ball in the post-processing of the images.

Hopefully 2010 will bring more opportunities to release my shutter!

To view the album, click on the ‘Photos’ tab, or go to , or if you’re a FaceBook friend you can view it on my Photos page.

Over the holidays I’ve been busily nerding away on a major overhaul of my website.

It’s been nearly three years since I updated my installation of WordPress from 2.0.5 to the latest 2.9 release, and it’s only months away from the ten-year anniversary of

However, with this major update to the core ‘engine’ of my website, it was necessary for me to change the appearance of the website, given the fact that the template I previously used was not compatible with some of the features of the latest version of WordPress.

So, one thing led to another, and the result is that many new features have been added, plus some nice improvements in appearance and functionality.

For those who get excited about these kinds of things, here are some of the changes:

  • Added an RSS feed of my weekly ‘Modern Ministry’ blog at in the sidebar
  • Added a funky Flash word cloud of my popular categories
  • Installed a new Twitter widget that displays my latest Tweets
  • Re-organised my categories into ten top-level categories
  • Removed the event calendar
  • Added a large option of icons to enable the easy sharing of my posts with social networking sites
  • Updated my list of links, including an ‘Affiliations’ list
  • Created a Picasa account, and have provided access to my albums from the ‘Photos’ page (and a fancy ‘Latest Photos’ sidebar widget)
  • Enabled automatic tweeting of new posts

If you’re reading this on a FaceBook note or by an RSS feed, then drop by and check it out.

What do you think of the changes? Any other suggestions for improvements? Let me know in the comments.

It is remarkable to reflect on the way in which God chose to create his universe. Everywhere we turn there is evidence of his lavish love and creativity; the boldness of a sunset… the beauty of a tulip… the brightness of the sun.

One particular area in which we see his creativity is in music. Music has the power to move people in a way that words fail to achieve. It can lift us to new heights, and take us on a journey to places unexpected.

At the 2004 TWIST Music Conference, Mike Raiter spoke of the power of the song. In referring to the wonderful Colin Buchanan concert the night before, he said that because of his gift of music, Colin could have taken our crowd anywhere. “But”, he observed, “aren’t we thankful that he took us to God!”

We know the power of music. We use it every week to proclaim God’s praises. Yet, we want to make sure we use this powerful tool to achieve the best possible outcomes.

That’s why it’s important our musicians are well trained. That’s why the TWIST Music Conference is such an important event for our musicians.

Registrations close Monday night, and the conference begins the Saturday after. Don’t miss out on stimulating teaching from Mike Raiter, terrific congregational music from some of Australia’s most gifted musos, and invaluable hands-on training in many great workshops.

Full details at Don’t miss out!

When does style overtake substance? This is one of the perennial issues in youth ministry–especially in music. Read my latest column at

Here’s an excerpt:

Now I recognise that speaking this way does little to give me youth ministry street-cred (or whatever it’s called these days). I am at great risk of being labelled out-of-touch, over-the-hill, geriatric, or whatever term of endearment the younger folk might care to give me. But I wonder whether or not there are certain tempos and vocal styles that are incompatible with congregational singing, even for a group of people who are regular listeners of heavy metal?