Category Archives: Humour

Why I would never make a good farm hand

Thank you, Madam Toastmaster, for that amazing introduction.  After that, I can’t wait to hear what I’m going to say!


The following four stories are true.  They all happened to me, and they conclusively prove why I would never make a good farm hand, much to the disgust of my father-in-law, who is a good keen Southland sheep farmer.

BTW, why do cows like being told jokes? Because they like being amoosed!

First, I have chronic hay-fever.

I always knew I suffered from this ever since I was a wee lad in Nelson.  However, I had temporary respite when I moved to study and work in Wellington.  Little did I know, this respite was only because I happened to be working in air-conditioned buildings.

Fiona is also from the South Island.  We met in Wellington.  I went down to visit the in-laws on their farm in Southland.  Pops took me out on the trailer, on the back of this quad bike.  We rode through a field of tall grasses.  He looked back once.  He saw my eyes streaming.  He sent me back to the farm house.  Basically, to him, I was useless!

BTW, did you hear the one about the convict who had allergies?  He broke out.

The second reason, is my educational philosophy.

I always wanted to go to university.  My father-in-law was not impressed with my reasoning.  I told him I wanted to get a degree, because I hated getting my hands dirty.  I didn’t realise at the time that that could be interpreted to mean I thought I was too good for menial tasks.  Whoops!

BTW, I got a job programming computers.  How many programmers does it take to change a light bulb?  None; that’s a hardware issue.

Third, I’m a terrible shepherd.

Pops once asked me to help him herd the sheep into the sharing shed.  Somehow, I got in front of the pack.  They went the other way.  Not a great start.

BTW, an accountant was having a hard time sleeping and goes to see his doctor. “Doctor, I just can’t get any sleep at night.”

“Have you tried counting sheep?”

“That’s the problem – I make a mistake and then spend four hours trying to find it.”

The final reason why I would not make a good farm hand, is my lack of good tools.

This is not so much a fun story, but it is true.  I was 5 years old when my parents divorced.  I was raised practically as an only child by my mother, despite having 5 older siblings who were either out of the house or had gone with my father.  So I never got to observe my father doing odd jobs around the house.  And I never got to accumulate useful tools.  Instead, as I grew up, I had to acquire my own tools as various jobs arose.  However, this lead to my purchasing the cheapest and not always the best because I didn’t know any better.

Do you know that old saying, “a poor workman blames his tools”?  This is true on two levels.  The obvious level is that the poor workman is merely making excuses for his poor craftsmanship.  But on another level, a poor workman has poor tools.  This was certainly true for me.

BTW, some men in a pickup truck drove into a lumberyard. One of the men walked in the office and says, “We need some four-by-twos.”

The clerk replies, “You mean two-by-fours, don’t you?”

The guy scratches his head and says, “I’ll go check,” and goes back to the truck.

He returns and says, “Yeah, I meant two-by-four.”

“All right. How long do you need them?”

The guy pauses for a minute and says, “I better go check.” After a while, he returns to the office and says, “A long time. We’re gonna build a house.”


As you can see, I have four valid reasons why I would never make a good farm hand:

  1. I have chronic hay fever;
  2. My educational philosophy;
  3. I’m a terrible shepherd; and
  4. I have poor tools.

All I can say in my defence is, I found a job I like instead.

BTW, what do you get when you cross a robot and a tractor?
A transfarmer.


Engagement Speech

Ladies and Gentlemen, my name is James, I am Tane’s dad.

I have asked to be allowed to speak: to mark this happy occasion with a few appropriate words, to which Tane has graciously granted me his permission.

First of all, I wish to thank you all for coming, to share and celebrate the occasion, but especially those who have travelled the farthest.  I see a few Wellington friends here: (name them).  Welcome to you.  Welcome to Tane’s Aunty Naomi, who travelled all the way from Dunedin.  Where have other people come from?

I wish to express my immense joy and pride in my son, especially at this time.  When they were growing up, my 3 children always knew these 3 things:

  • We loved them all equally; there are no favourites.
  • If two of them argued unreasonably, then the 3rd one won the treat. This was usually Hamish.
  • I have always been proud of each one of them.

Tane was born on Star Wars day: May 4th, 1997.  I infected him with the love of science fiction early, and we’ve enjoyed discussing many shows of that genre.

His names means “Sunday Man”.  He was born on a Sunday, and was in church the following Sunday.  I’m pleased to report, he has never chosen to leave since.

Tane, in Maori means “man”, kind of like “Adam”, because he was our first little man.

Tane lived 6 months in Africa from June to December 1997.  He left NZ as a 7 week old new-born and returned a 7 month old rug rat.

Tane was baptised July 4th, 2005, when he was 8 years old, at his original home church of Wellington Elim.  I baptised him, because we were home-schooling him at that time, and we were his Bible teachers.  A funny thing happened when I dunked him: his bottom came up.  I froze, because I didn’t know what to do next (“he’s not completely immersed!”).  Somebody had to remind me to let him up.  No harm done.

We moved into Manurewa on May 18th, 2013, when Tane was 16.

He met Jess at a Church Youth Group in 2014.  They have been inseparable ever since.  When Tane went with Jess to her second school ball in 2015, is when I knew this was getting serious.

I couldn’t be happier for Tane in his choice of girl.  Jess has won me over, despite my reservations about their youth, for many reasons, these are just a few:

  • She’s a most excellent cos-player. For those not initiated into geeky things, this means she makes and wears her own costumes to science fiction conventions and such.  For 2 years running, Tane & Jess have won our church costume talent show as: Tarzan & Jane one year, and Mary Poppins and Bert the next.
  • She’s beautiful. ‘Nuff said
  • I doubt she knows this, but I was very impressed by something I overheard said one particular day. In our own wedding vows, Fiona and I promised mutual love and respect, but individually, I promised to support her and Fiona promised to follow me.  This may be quaint now, but it’s a vow we’ve always kept.  What I overheard was, while Tane was trying to sort out his tertiary study options, moving back to Wellington was a possibility, to which Jess’s response was a matter-of-fact, to paraphrase a certain Bible verse, “where you go, I will go.  Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God.”  Jess, you won my heart then.  John and Donna, I congratulate you on raising a wonderful daughter.

Tane proposed to Jess while on holiday in Paris on 17 August 2016, which brings us up to date.

As of yet, there is no wedding date to announce, because Tane has just learned he has been accepted into Unitech’s Drama Programme.  This potentially means 3 years of tertiary study.  Realistically, I would expect a wedding before then, so watch this space.

In conclusion, an engagement is a fun, but also serious occasion.  It is a binding promise, of the further commitment to come.  It is an opportunity for them to say to us, “This is our intent” and for us to say to them, “we will support you”.

To that end, will you please be upstanding, charge your glasses, and repeat after me: “we will support you.”

Humorously Speaking Project 1

Humorously Speaking

Project 1 – Warm up your audience


  • Prepare a speech that opens with a humorous story.
  • Personalize the story.
  • Deliver the story smoothly and effectively.



Title: The (On-Going) Adventures of a Motorcycling Noob.

Opening joke:

  • Setup – Imagine, if you will, it’s a cold, wet, miserable morning and I’ve got school. I don’t want to go, but my mum makes me get up. It’s my first day and she wants me to make a good impression. (Pause)
  • Punchline – After all, I am the Principal. (Pause)

Introduction (honorifics)

  • Setup – What’s a Noob, I hear you ask?   A Noob is short for someone who is new to something and therefore is allowed to make mistakes. Like me, with Motorcycling. Before 2013, I’d never attempted to get a motorcycle license. (Pause)
  • Punchline – After hearing these next 3 stories, you as fellow Auckland commuters, may wish I’d never started! (Pause)


  1. Teaching Tane to Ride
    1. Setup – At around the same time as I was learning to ride for the first time, my oldest son was also ready to learn.   So we went out to a local car park and I did the IDEER principle: Introduction, Demonstration, Explanation, Execution & Repetition. Except, we didn’t get to the Repetition phase. I had just asked him to mount the bike for the first time and ride forward 10 meters, and stop, which he did perfectly. Unfortunately, it didn’t occur to him that he needed to put his foot down.
    2. Punchline – The bike promptly fell over and smashed both mirrors.
    3. Recovery – We were done with lessons for that day.
  2. Pulling my first wheelie
    1. Setup – Most recently, and most alarmingly, I was waiting at the lights, at the head of the queue. (You know how motorbikes can just slide up the middle to the front? That’s me.) The lights went green and I started out, but my front wheel started to do a sort of shimmy. I thought I was going to fall off. I just managed to right myself and get the rest of the way home. I thought that maybe I hadn’t maintained my bike properly. Maybe some cable had come loose. So I got out the manual for the first time (as you do) to try to figure it out. However, the first pages told me exactly what I’d done wrong.
    2. Punchline – Turns out, I’d pulled my first wheelie!
  3. Motorway accident
    1. Setup – Just prior to that, I had had a serious accident on the motorway. It happened like this: I was burning up the road, just north of Manukau, when a family of ducks were in mortal danger. I had to swerve to avoid hitting them. My front wheel slipped on the extremely greasy surface, and I went down, in front of an on-coming truck. Somehow, the truck managed to stop in time, but I was already bouncing up, after having gouged out huge chunks of the motorway, and was somersaulting over the ducks (remember them?). The bike slid into the car in front (narrowing avoiding the ducks), which had to stop to render assistance (the car, not the ducks, silly. Do try to keep up.). My forward trajectory was finally arrested (in standard hero pose), and I calmly gathered up my fallen steed and wheeled it to the side of the road, forcing all 3 lanes to stop for me. The guy in the car who stopped (who actually had pulled out in front of me) was this little Chinese kiwi man, who was so shaken up, he asked me for a hug!
    2. Punchline – so I gave him one!
    3. Setup – 10 minutes later, an ambulance arrived. They asked me if I required assistance. You know, adrenaline does an amazing thing to a man’s body. I shrugged my shoulders and told them I was fine to go to work. They didn’t quite believe me, but toddled off, leaving some advice to get myself to A&E if “anything changes”. 10 minutes after that, the police arrived. They took our statements, then after about half an hour, let us go. The Chinese man was so worried about me, that he offered to drive me to work.
    4. Punchline – So I let him!
    5. Setup – I got to work, in time for a special morning tea (my real motivation for going). During that time, the adrenaline started to wear off, and I didn’t feel quite right. So I toddled off to A&E for an X-ray.
    6. Punchline – The truth is I had broken my arm in two places.
    7. Setup – I was in a cast for six weeks! I had to recount my story to my boss (in order to explain why I needed time off work).
    8. Punchline – His retelling of my story was so much better that I prefer his version to my more mundane one!


  • Setup – I’ve come to the conclusion that as a motorcycling noob, I’ve made a significant and sufficient number of mistakes:
    • Forgetting to teach Tane to put his foot down;
    • Forgetting to read the manual; and
    • Avoiding ducks on the motorway.
  • Punchline – That I may well be, the safest motorcyclist on the road today!


The Green Thing

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In the line at the store, the cashier told an older woman that she should bring her own

grocery bags because plastic bags weren’t good for the environment.

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The woman apologized to him and explained, "We didn’t have the green thing back

in my day.  "The clerk responded, "That’s our problem today.  Your generation did

not care enough to save our environment."
He was right — our generation didn’t have the green thing in its day!!

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Back then, we returned milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the store.

The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled,

so it could use the same bottles over and over.  So they really were recycled.


But we didn’t have the green thing back in our day!!

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We walked up stairs, because we didn’t have an escalator in every store and office

building. We walked to the grocery store and didn’t climb into a 300-horsepower

machine every time we had to go two blocks.

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But he was right. We didn’t have the green thing in our day.!!

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Back then, we washed the baby’s diapers because we didn’t have the throw-

away kind. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning

up 220 volts — wind and solar power really did dry the clothes.  Kids got hand-

me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing.

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But that young upstart is right; we didn’t have the green thing

back in our day!!

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Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house — not a TV in every room. And the

TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen

the size of a whole wall.


In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn’t have

electric machines to do everything for us.

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When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used a wadded up old

newspaper to cushion it, not styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.

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Back then, we didn’t fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut the lawn.

We used a push mower that ran on human power. 

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We exercised by working so we didn’t need to go to a health club to

run on treadmills that operate on electricity.

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But he’s right; we didn’t have the green thing back then!!

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We drank from a fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic

bottle every time we had a drink of water.


We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the

razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because

the blade got dull.

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But we didn’t have the green thing back then…No not us!!

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Back then, people took the streetcar or a bus to work.

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Kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their moms

into a 24-hour taxi service.

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We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets

to power a dozen appliances. 

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And we didn’t need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed

from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find

the nearest pizza joint.

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But isn’t it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just

because we didn’t have the green thing back then?

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Please forward this on to another selfish old person who needs a lesson in

conservation from a ‘green-minded’  young person.

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The Green Thing….Really!….What do these young people know of the "Green Thing!"
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So let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest time if we do not give up. So then, whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good of all, and especially for those of the family of faith.

– Galatians 6:9-10

METTLE Monthly Newsletter Volume 5 Issue 12


Volume 5 Issue 12

December 2010

Hippolite Musings 

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In December, I:

  1. Finished rehearsals for Christmas Production;
  2. Attended Johnsonville Christmas Parade; watched Hamish march with St Johns (Aimee was at tap rehearsals);
  3. Attended Telecom Christmas Party at TSB Arena (see photos left);
  4. Attended Squash Club BBQ;
  5. Attended Angela Goodall’s Dance Academy end of year performance of Wonderland;  watched Aimee as a tapping blue caterpillar and Tane as a tapping Card Guard (photos and DVD available for viewing);
  6. Attended Elim One Service for Volunteers;
  7. Attended my first CAB (Change Approval Board) meeting; got my Change Request approved; implemented my final production change for the year;
  8. Gave dramatic performance as King Nebuchadnezzar in Elim production of It’s Cool in the Furnace;
  9. Immediately after the production, shaved off my beard;
  10. Attended Grenada Village Christmas Carols;
  11. Sent Christmas cards and newsletter;
  12. Had a Voice Test for a possible professional dramatic presentation (subsequently not awarded);
  13. Attended KBK (Kids Bible Klub) end of year performance; watched Aimee in a dramatic play;
  14. Attended final Dot Net User Group meeting; went out for final Geek Dinner afterwards;
  15. Attended final Squash Committee meeting re: current building crisis;
  16. Final Align leaders meeting;
  17. Took the kids to a movie; watched Voyage of the Dawn Treader;
  18. Finished work early; took an extra week’s holiday;
  19. Prepared house for painting; cleaned the house for guests; tidied up gardens (correction: Fiona and in-laws tidied up the garden; I took the trailer to the tip);
  20. Took all three kids to the orthodontist;
  21. Pickup in-laws from airport;
  22. Farewelled Daryl Burling from Microsoft;
  23. Distributed chocolate almonds to homes in Taita;
  24. Attended another BBQ; Christmas Eve party at Alan’s;
  25. hosted Align Christmas Service;
  26. Christmas BBQ at Tansley’s; and
  27. Commenced stripping, sanding; priming and painting the house.


World Outreach



  • MOZAMBIQUE:  Please pray for Kotie & Rina Smit, WO missionaries based in Nacala, northern Mozambique.  They have been attacked and robbed of cash, computers, mobile phones, cameras, and other personal effects, by a band of 6 thieves. Kotie now has a broken arm, cuts and some bruising resulting from the attack.  They tried to slash him with pangas (a machete like tool) several times. Rina said the hand of the Lord was on them as Kotie could easily have been killed. She said they had a real sense of God’s protection throughout the whole incident and didn’t sense any fear. Praise the Lord!  One encouraging aspect in all this is that when the local Mozambiquan community learnt of the robbery and assault, family after family visited the Smits to apologize, to pray and encourage them,. Some came from far away villages.  This really blessed the Smits who had often wondered what effect they and their ministry was having in the region. Kotie & Rina are now in Sth Africa getting medical attention. Kotie is experiencing pain and his arm cannot be put in plaster until the wounds are healed.  Please keep them both in prayer as they recover from this terrible and traumatic time.
  • IVORY COAST.  Janvier & Claudine Yokoinele writes: “The country is going through a situation which only prayer can sort out. After this month’s Presidential elections, the country finds itself in a dangerous situation with the two main candidates claiming to have won. One (the incumbent) is officially recognized by the constitutional council and courts, while the other is self proclaimed and supported by the international community. Only through prayer can this national dilemma be solved.  Civil war could easily result.  All schools have been closed for more than a week and people have been told to stay at home. There is a strict night curfew which will remain in place for at least another week.”  The situation is critical. Please pray for the Ivory Coast.
  • NTH ASIA. Please uphold a WO team living and ministering among an unreached people group in N-W Asia. A potential security issue has arisen that could jeopardize the team’s visas and the means for them to carrying on. Pray that all team members will be safe & protected by the Holy Spirit.   
  • BANGLADESH. Bruce Hills, WOI Leadership Development Director, is ministering at a national conference in Bangladesh this week and would appreciate prayer. Bangladesh is a nation that the WOI leadership want to dedicate more time, personnel and resources to in the training & equipping of leadership and church planters. Pray that Bruce will not only enjoy God’s hand of blessing on him during this time, but also that he will have some divine appointments along the way that will play a key part in helping WOI’s future strategy planning for this spiritually needy land.
  • INDONESIA. Sam & Carol Soukotta, along with staff & students at Tawangmangu Bible College (TBC) are now waiting official word from the Central Java government about reducing the gov’ts asking price for buying the leasehold land on which the TBC campus is located. After a recent meeting with the governor, he said that he was impressed with the “professional way” in which TBC was approaching the whole issue.  Sam Soukotta writes, “So for now we continue to pray and believe the Lord will intervene, through ‘our good example’.  It pays to be in the ‘good books’ of the government!”  Please pray that the land purchase price will be reduced to the present 30% deposit that has already been paid. 
  • David Elliott would appreciate prayer for himself and the multi-national team he is leading to the Living Waters base in West Kalimantan, Indonesia this week. Daily the team will be involved in practical work relating to the ongoing building projects, and in the evenings ministering to the 400+ children that are living on the LW base. Please pray for the team’s travel protections and good health during this 2 week period, and that they will be a huge blessing to all they come in contact with. 


  • INDIA. Jess Le Bleu is full of praise to the Lord and wants to thank all who persevered in prayer with her for the India visa that she needed in order for her to go and minister in Bihar province. Jess and companion Michelle, fly into India this week.  Praise the Lord!

John Elliott

Why I Am A Climate Realist

BREAKING: Hottest year ever claims based on fake data

You hear it trotted out so often it’s tiresome, but for those who still believe the climate scientists who claim 2010 is "the hottest year ever", here’s a wake-up call: the data is fake. (another perspective here)

It’s a similar stunt I pinged New Zealand’s NIWA for a year ago. It seems anyone with access to a cereal packet is licensed to be a UN endorsed climate scientist these days.

You cannot extrapolate temperatures on a global level from areas where there are no accurate temp readings for hundreds of kilometres. It’s guess work, not science.

And just to pre-empt any timewasting by Ken Perrott, who has consistently tried to defend NIWA, may I remind Ken he has offered no coherent explanation for his flawed logic exposed here:

Meanwhile, some good news.

Air Con Climategate 2010 edition has finally gone on sale in NZ bookshops after we arranged for the US files to be printed locally in Wellington.

Whitcoulls and Paperplus are the best places to try first.

Posted by iwishart on December 15,

Why I Am A Creationist



Adam and His Kin

The Lost History of Their Lives and Times


Ruth Beechick

Dr. Ruth Beechick is author or editor of more than 100 manuals, workbooks and other items for Bible learning, as well as several books on education topics.  She is a former teacher and professor of education, and is known for her talent in making complex topics clear and understandable.  Adam and His Kin continues in that tradition.


Mott Media, Fenton Michigan,


Softcover, 176 pages


Journey Through the World’s Forgotten Years

History doesn’t have to be drab.  This book is entertaining, informative and remarkably easy to read.  Though not a novel, it weaves into one continuous story information from many sources – including linguistics, archeology, astronomy and other sciences; the Bible and other history; and ancient traditions and religions.  It is neatly arranged within the timeline as given in the Bible  This excursion through an almost forgotten world provides startling insights on many old questions.

  • HAVE history textbooks told us the truth?
  • HOW did mankind learn language?
  • WHERE did the skills of civilization begin?
  • WHY do ancient writings refer to a year of 360 days?
  • WHAT actual events lie behind the mythologies of the world?
  • WHO kept alive the memory of the distant past?



  1. The Beginning of Time
  2. In the Garden
  3. The Punishment
  4. Adam’s Children
  5. Cain
  6. Writing in the Stars
  7. The Preachers
  8. Noah
  9. The Year of 1656
  10. The Great Flood
  11. The Calendar Puzzle
  12. Starting Up the New World
  13. Trouble at Ararat
  14. Land of the Two Rivers
  15. The Tower of Bel
  16. Aftermath
  17. Gods and Goddesses
  18. The Death of Noah
  19. Abram


A. Writers of Genesis

B. Genesis 1:1 to 11:27a

C. Study Projects

D. Annotated Bibliography


This book builds upon the work of Dr. Henry Morris’ The Genesis Record, which in my opinion is the best commentary ever on Genesis.

It is achingly simple to understand.  You could read it to your pre-teen children and they would get it.  We did.

It successfully achieves its purpose.  The preface explains the author’s decision to write a narrative because “secular history books do not balk at guessing.”  I like that.

When starting with the Bible as your yardstick, the various histories of the world make sense.  Mankind is not evolving.  We are devolving.  We originally were created in the image of God.  Everything since then has been entropy – an increase of chaos, or a decrease of order.


Why I Am Pro Maori

Get a Grip, People

Again with the foreshore and seabed.  I usually like what the ACT Party have to say about personal responsibility and small government, but when it comes to Maori, they haven’t got a clue.

The original Foreshore and Seabed Act was racist because it specifically prevented Maori from exercising the rights of any other citizen of NZ, to have their property rights tested in a court of law.

The replacement Act has to address that imbalance.  This means some Tribes may be able to prove Customary Entitlement.  This means some land will be cut off from the public estate.  Big deal.  (White) private land owners have been doing that (and profiting from it) for years.

To assume that all Maori will immediately snap up prime real estate and sell it to overseas interests, or worse yet, lock it up for spiritual reasons, is blatant scare-mongering.

Stop bashing Maori, ACT.


How to… 

Engage the Culture

I’ve Been Thinking

Fiona and I have resigned from three committees each.  2011 will be our Sabbatical year.  Our responsibilities were:

  • Secretary, Northern Racquets Squash Club
  • Secretary, Grenada Village Residents Association
  • Treasurer, Wellington Home Education Network
  • Membership Secretary, Wellington Home Education Network
  • Budget Advisor, Agape Budgeting Service
  • Librarian, Wellington Home Education Network

We will be focussing on our missionary activity at Align Church Taita.  Specifically, we have voiced an interest in and willingness to head up family ministries there.  We already got a Kids Bible Club and Go Girls team running.  2011 we have been asked to put on a pre-marriage/relationships course.  This will be followed later in the year by a marriage course.


Great Scientists…

…Who Believed the Bible

James Clerk Maxwell (1831–1879)

What could be more different than magnetism, electricity, and light? Yet, in the nineteenth century, James Clerk Maxwell showed that these phenomena were simply different manifestations of the same fundamental laws. He described all these, as well as radio waves, radar, and radiant heat, by a unique and elegant system of equations.

Friday Fax


Dear Colleague,

You have another day to donate to the Friday Fax and receive a deduction on your 2010 US taxes. Go to and please give as much as you can.
We report today on a recent victory of poor countries over rich ones on the question of homosexuality.
We also report on how one abstinence program is saving lives.
Spread the word.

Yours sincerely,
Austin Ruse

Countries Reject “Sexual Orientation” Language in Treaty with Europe

By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.
BRUSSELS, December 30 (C-FAM) Developing nations recently slapped down attempts by the European Union to add “sexual orientation” to an existing treaty.
Seventy-nine countries from Africa, the Caribbean, and the Pacific islands sent a letter to the European Parliament that is notable for its strong demand that the EU stop pushing its homosexual agenda on developing countries.  

Supporters Say Truly Comprehensive Sex-Ed Gets Results

By Amanda Pawloski and Samantha Singson
NEW YORK, December 30 (C-FAM) Nothing gets the debate burning hotter at the UN than one over sex education for children.
Last Fall conservative UN delegations angrily protested a report claiming for children a new right to “comprehensive sexuality education.”   

Train a Child



  • Finished third year tap lessons with Commendation for Consistent Effort.  Was an impressive White Queen’s Card Guard in Wonderland.  We all hated the costume, but that’s show business.
  • Demonstrated his prowess at several BBQ by cheerfully being volunteered by his Dad to do the cooking.
  • Finally completed his (much awaiting, long overdue and completely easy just tedious) maths workbook, thus finally earning him Dad’s hand-me-down HTC Touch (Windows 6.1) cellphone.  He’s happy.


  • Proudly led St John Cadets in Johnsonville Santa Parade march.
  • I have commenced reading Lord of the Rings to him.  I have accepted his dyslexia unfairly prevents him from earning the right to watch the movies (a prerequisite I placed on Tane).  We are enjoying the journey together.  We finished The Hobbit last month.
  • Has happily accepted Tane’s hand-me-down Pantech 210C cellphone.


  • Was a competent and very cute blue caterpillar in Wonderland.
  • Is demonstrating responsibility by looking after a friend’s guinea pigs and budgerigar while they are away on holiday.
  • Is having to wear a plate to correct her teeth at present.  This is preventative, to avoid braces later.  So far, she hasn’t been very diligent and has had to have the plate reset twice.  The plate is a source of some fascination at Align Church among the kids.  I can see that their parents are not able to afford good dental treatment.  I see how the poverty cycle can be hard to escape.  It is a source of concern to me.

Why I Am Pro-Israel


Weekly Review: December 26, 2010

Dear Friend of Jerusalem,

Here are the latest headlines from the One Jerusalem Blog:

  • Christmas in the Palestinian Authority – A Latma Christmas Carol
  • Islamic War Against Jews, Christians, .. In Holy Land:  Nina Shea has published a troubling, enlightening, and timely essay on the Islamic war against the religions that make this season holy for most of the world. Shea writes:These figures in the Christmas story represent the principal monotheistic religions of…
  • "Israeli War Crimes" in Seattle:  A Seattle bus company has allowed an anti-Israel group to advertise anti-Israel propaganda on Seattle City buses.  A local Seattle media outlet has a poll asking for your vote.  Vote NO!…

Sincerely, The One Jerusalem Team


Husband Learns Love Is More Than Words

For the first 15 years of my marriage, I was a terrible husband. Diane held down a full-time job, became my secretary, mothered our daughters, and waited on me hand and foot without ever demanding that I lift a finger to help. I loved my wife very much, but I hadn’t yet learned how to show my love. I had a lesson to learn, and God used a vacuum cleaner to teach it.

I learned many things about vacuuming one day. First, I learned that our cat was terrified of vacuum cleaners. That kept me entertained for about an hour.

As I vacuumed in one direction, a stripe would appear. Going the opposite direction would create a stripe of a different shade. Entranced, I striped the whole room. Then I went crossways, creating a checkerboard pattern. I got so carried away that I dusted the furniture and straightened the entire house.

I was once again embedded in the easy chair, working on my crossword puzzle, when Diane came home. She struggled through the door with a bag of groceries under each arm, kicked the door shut with one foot, and then took in the house with an expert glance. Her mouth dropped open. Slowly the bags slipped from her grasp and dropped to the floor. "Who did this?" she asked.

"I did," I said. Without warning, she attacked. Diving on me before I could get out of the chair, she smothered me with kisses and hugs, showering gratitude on me for helping her. The kisses grew more passionate. We broke the chair. It was wonderful!

The vacuum cleaner taught me an important lesson that day. Love is expressed with more than just words.

—Ken Davis, Lighten Up! Great Stories from One of America’s Favorite Storytellers (Zondervan, 2000), pp. 123-124

Events Schedule


In this section, I highlight dates, times and venues of events either I am presenting at, or of interest to METTLE.  I’m available for bookings.






Robotics Fundraiser (Sausage Sizzle)

Noel Leemings, Porirua



Sunday Service

Wellington Elim

Sam Soukotta


Back to Work

Telecom, Grand Arcade


14-17 Jan

Missions for Africa

Hippolite House

Ross Campbell


Church in the Community

Stokes Valley Pool

Align Church


Sunday Morning Service

Wellington Elim

Bruce Corcoran


Church in the Community


Align Church


Church in the Community

Avalon Park

Align Church

10-14 Jul-2011

PDC 10



Bible Reading 

You can look up for yourselves at:

End Notes

  • METTLE is an acronym for Men’s Evangelical Team Together for Learning Experiences. We are primarily Christian businessmen from Wellington, who meet occasionally in the CBD to encourage each other in our daily walk with Jesus. This Monthly Collaborative Blog (MCB) is our primary means of communication.  If you know of anyone who may benefit from this MCB, you are welcome to forward them along. Similarly, if your circumstances are such that membership in this distribution list is no longer relevant, then hit reply and type UNSUBSCRIBE to have it removed.
  • If you choose to respond to any item raised in this MCB, please indicate clearly which items you wish to remain Private, as any correspondence may be considered Public and could be published.
  • If this newsletter has been of benefit to you, why not drop a line and say so.  Or better yet, visit the TVORNZ website to read past issues and add a comment!
  • Published by The Voice of Reason, New Zealand, copyright © 2006-2011.

METTLE Monthly Newsletter Volume 5 Issue 11


Volume 5 Issue 11

November 2010

Hippolite Musings 



In November, I:

  1. Conquered the Project Management tool which Telecom uses by entering 3 months actuals and 1 months forecast work for the 8 staff in my team.  I’m a trainee Team Lead!
  2. Finished Spring Interclub (Squash) competitions.  Harrumph.
  3. Attended Northern Squash prize giving (see photo left).
  4. Attended copious rehearsals as King Nebuchadnezzar in Elim’s production of “It’s Cool in the Furnace!
  5. Gave my Creation presentation once again, this time to a men’s group at Elim.  Took great questions.  Very positive experience.
  6. Attended Guy Fawkes Celebrations at Frank Kitts Park (courtesy of a BNZ staff friend).  Got out of the rain by going across the road (courtesy of Telecom House access card).
  7. Attended another Vex Robotics Scrimmage.
  8. Attended a mate’s birthday BBQ.  ‘Tis the season!
  9. Sent Aimee for her first camp away from home without us (St. John’s).
  10. Ran four Align Bible Club services.
  11. Received direction on how to maximise My Personal Performance (MPP) reporting.  This is corporate-speak for complying with my quarterly performance reviews.
  12. Fixing up WHEN library database in preparation for handing it over to somebody else.  Yippee!
  13. Sat and failed my Windows Communication Foundation exam.  Ah, well, there’s always next month!
  14. Studied (before and after exam) materials for said exam.
  15. Met with Martin Steel, pastor of Harbourside Church and mentor to Align Church.  Received (more) leadership training.  Asked seriously tricky questions.  Got straight answers.
  16. Took ABC class to Heaven’s Gates, Hell’s Flames drama at Avalon AOG.
  17. Took final minutes as Secretary for Grenada Village Community Association at AGM.  Presented finances as acting Treasurer.
  18. Assisted Fiona to handover Membership Secretary duties of WHEN.
  19. Align Leaders Workshop (Praise Centre, Wainuiomata).
  20. Guitar lessons.
  21. Gave promo of musical production at church.
  22. Delivered one project.  Picked up three more.  Christmas is always busy (people trying to get stuff finished before the shutdown period).


World Outreach



  • INDONESIA. This coming Monday, Nov 22 the Principal of Tawangmangu Bible College (TBC) and an attorney of Justice will meet with the Governor of Central Java to request that the authorities reduce their price for the TBC campus land to the 30% deposit that has already been paid. Other land owners on Mt Tawangmangu are also protesting the gov’t’s high freehold fee on their land, with most landowners not willing to pay.  Sam & Carol Soukotta ask that we remember to pray for this very important meeting on Monday, in particular that the favour of the Lord will be toward TBC. Thank you.
    Please also remember John LeRoy in prayer as he continues to recover after contracting typhoid and dengue fever last month in West Kalimantan, Indonesia.
  • MOZAMBIQUE. A WO team is presently in northern Mozambique ministering to some 400 Koti leaders and they request our prayers. In particular they are asking for wisdom to know how to encourage & guide some of the Koti who sense the Holy Spirit directing them to go and minister among the Mwani people group further north, near the border with Tanzania. Pray too for a rich anointing of the Holy Spirit on the Koti gathering, for healing of bodies that are afflicted with malaria and other diseases, and that the inner working of the Holy Spirit will continue to transform the Koti people from their former pagan ways, and baptize them afresh in the Father’s love.   
  • WO2010. Prayer is requested as members of the WO International leadership meet on Mon, Nov 29 to discuss and sign off on important policies relating to the organization’s journey of change that began back in 2003.  At present 90% of what was targeted to happen by the end of 2010 has been achieved. The Nov 29 meeting will help sign off on the remaining outstanding items.
  • VISAS. Please pray for Jessica (India), Tony & Annette (Thailand) and Jason & Anne (Indonesia) who all need the favour of the Lord for the approval of their visas so they can continue serving the Lord in their respective nations.   


  • THAILAND.  Lorraine Dierck, WO Thailand field leader writes: “Our church-planting teams are doing well with much fruit, and continuing to baptise new believers every day. Outstanding miracles continue to happen as these uneducated brand-new believers step out in faith and pray for blind eyes to be open, lame legs to start walking – and they do! The new churches are now preparing for their first Christmas as followers of Jesus, and as you can imagine, they are wisely planning how they can use the Christmas story to bring their families and friends to faith in Jesus Christ.”
  • ETHIOPIA. Daniels’ father Tammen is an important man who leads 5 mosques in South West Ethiopia.  Through the testimonies and witness of some friends, Daniel became a believer in Jesus Christ and steadily grew in his new found faith even though he experienced much opposition and persecution. He now is pastoring a church in a Muslim community. Recently he witnessed to the leader of the local mosque and the man and his whole family eventually became followers of Jesus Christ.  Within three days of the mosque leader’s conversion his oldest son suddenly passed away. He refused to bury his son in the traditional manner but wanted his son buried at the Christian cemetery.  Some five thousand Muslims attended burial and listened intently to a clear presentation of the Gospel.  Shortly afterwards when at Friday prayers, a Mosque Sheik told his congregation that they should beat the Christians and kill Daniel. As he was about to publicly announce this over the loud speaker system, a heavy rain storm fell on the mosque and surrounding area and nobody could hear the announcement.  Then a lightning strike destroyed the crescent and moon on top of the mosque and part of the building was damaged.  The mosque sheik was shocked and frightened by what had happened so declared, “don’t touch the Christians because their God is more powerful.”   Since then there is peace and Daniel has seen the church grow with more coming to listen to the preaching of the Word of God every week.

John Elliott

Koinonia House News



  • 69 Children Saved From Prostitution Rings
    November 09, 2010
    A three-day federal crackdown on child prostitution rings across the country has resulted in the recovery of 69 children and the arrest of 884 people, including 99 pimps, federal authorities said Monday. There are now 39 Innocence Lost task forces and working groups throughout the country. So far, those units have recovered 1,250 children, and the initiative has resulted in 438 indictments, 625 convictions, 153 criminal enterprises disrupted and 58 successfully dismantled, authorities said.
    – CNN
  • Bible Distribution Nixed At Michigan Schools
    November 09, 2010
    A school district in southern Michigan is stopping a longstanding practice of allowing the Gideons to distribute Bibles in the hallways of its elementary school after a parent complained to the district’s superintendent. Superintendent Mike Potts told The Christian Post on Tuesday that the district is not taking a stand on whether Bibles are right or wrong but simply following regulations as a government agency. "We cannot condone the passing any literature of that nature regardless of who’s passing it out," said Potts.
    – The Christian Post
  • China and Russia Vow To Advance Military Cooperation
    November 09, 2010
    China and Russia, vowing to advance military ties, signed an agreement in Beijing Tuesday for developing military cooperation between their two countries. The signing came during a one-day visit to China by Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov, RIA Novosti reported. A spokeswoman for Serdyukov said the accord involves contracts to supply spare parts for air defense systems, aviation and navy equipment.
    – UPI
  • Oklahoma Sharia Law Ban Blocked For Now
    November 08, 2010
    A popular new law that bars Oklahoma courts from considering Islamic law, or Shariah, when deciding cases was put on hold Monday after a prominent Muslim in the state won a temporary restraining order in federal court. US District Court Judge Vicki Miles-LeGrange ruled that the measure, which passed by a large margin in last Tuesday’s elections, would be suspended until a hearing on Nov. 22, when she will listen to arguments on whether the court’s temporary injunction should become permanent.
    – Fox News
  • Intelligent Design in The Hebrew
    November 06, 2010
    In the Hebrew version of Wikipedia, the page on intelligent design translates ID with the phrase "tichnun tivoni," which means something like "intelligent planning." And so it’s translated regularly too in Ha’aretz and other Israeli news sources. The Wiki page is well supplied with the usual distortions that you’d expect from Wikipedia in any language, but never mind that. The question of how to translate "intelligent design" into the language of the Bible is an interesting one. Is there an actual Biblical phrase that captures the idea?
    – Evolution News and Views

Why I Am A Climate Realist

Climategate video of the year

James says:

This video is a hard-hitting exposé of the tactics used by Climate Alarmists to distort the truth and spread fear, uncertainty and doubt in order to advance, or at the very least maintain their grasp of tax-funded tenures.

Why I Am A Creationist


  • Pew survey reveals widespread religious ignorance
    When the Pew Forum surveyed Americans’ knowledge of various religions, no one really scored well. What are the implications for the Church? Gary Bates and Lita Cosner suggest a solution in their analysis.
  • Does chromosome fusion prove common ancestry?
    Evolutionists claim that evidence of chromosome fusion in humans, who have 23 pairs of chromosomes, proves that we were descended from apes, who have 24 pairs. But Dominic Statham shows that for evolutionists, their interpretation amounts to “Heads I win, tails you lose”.
  • Mammoth burgers served on buns?
    New Scientist has published new evidence of widespread flour production in ‘stone age’ Europe. In this article, CMI-Australia’s David Catchpoole shows how evolutionary assumptions about the diet of ancient humans caused scientists to completely overlook this evidence.
  • classic: The evolution train’s a-comin’
    Don’t the small changes we see in living things today prove that, given millions of years, those small changes could add up to evolution? In this classic article from Creation magazine, Carl Wieland says no; because the changes are heading in the wrong direction! Read The evolution train’s a-comin’ (sorry, a’goin’—in the wrong direction).
  • Exciting new feature. Get on your mobile!
    Need an answer on the go? Now it’s easy to access our over-7500 fully searchable articles through any web-connected cell phone: just go to
  • Creation talks by satellite—with a twist…
    CMI speaker and satellite scientist Dr Mark Harwood has commenced recording a series of 16 sessions of 30 minutes each for an Arabic Christian TV Channel that provides content for satellite-based channels over Australia and New Zealand, plus also for possible Middle East coverage. The interesting ‘twist’ is that the programs will be transmitted by a satellite that Mark actually designed! If you haven’t already got it, we highly recommend Mark’s latest DVD, Elephants in the Room.

Why I Am Pro Maori


Nominations for Kaumatua and Rangatahi representation on the Board of Te Runanga O Toa Rangatira Inc, are now open.

The Kaumatua positions are for

  • 1 x koroua, and
  • 1 x kuia

The Rangatahi positions are for

  • 1 x kotiro, and
  • 1 x tamatane

If you would like to nominate an iwi member to the Board of Te Runanga O Toa Rangatira Inc., please click here to access the nomination form on the Ngati Toa website or contact the Runanga office on the number listed below.

Nominations close on 6 December 2010 and nomination forms and supporting documents must be received at the Runanga office by 5pm, Monday 6th December 2010.

All nominees and nominators must be registered members through whakapapa, reside in New Zealand and be 18 years of age and over.

In the case of the Rangatahi (both kotiro and tamatane), the nominees must be at least 18 years of age and be no older than 27 at election day, that is 18 February 2011.

Voting papers will be sent to registered Iwi members. Postal votes will close 6pm Wednesday 17 February.

A Special General Meeting will be held Puna Ora, Takapuwahia on Thursday 18 February 2011 where a final opportunity to vote will be available. Voting will open at 10am and close at 3pm. 


If there are any questions regarding this information contained in this email please phone the Runanga on 04 237 7922 or email

Missy Te Kahu
Iwi Registration Administrator
Te Runanga O Toa Rangatira Inc
Phone: (04) 237 7922

How to… 

Engage the Culture

What struck me as odd this month was the Pike River Mine disaster.  The outpouring of grief; the decision to hold a state funeral; the unprecedented (I was a child and didn’t notice Erebus) public attention.  For 29 coal miners nobody had ever heard of before, at a West Coast mine nobody knew existed.

God got a mention.  This was good.  Even the atheists who want to ignore Him, couldn’t resist trying to lay the blame at His feet.  Which is highly amusing, because their faith position offers no hope nor succour to the families of the miners.  Meanwhile, the churches cooperation in Greymouth contributed to a very positive image of Christian unity.

And finally, I have to agree with the lone letter to the editor who exposed an (in hind site) obvious contributing factor to the accident: that the Greens value snails over the lives of those men by forcing the mine to tunnel rather than allow open cast mining. 

Snails are not taonga.  People are taonga.

Great Scientists…

…Who Believed the Bible

Joseph Lister (1827–1912)

Imagine making a discovery so important that a whole branch of science dates its calendar by it.  That is what happened because of a Christian doctor.  Joseph Lister’s discovery of antisepsis has led some to divide the history of medicine into the eras “before Lister” and “after Lister.”  His work did more to save lives in the hospital than any other in history.  Surprisingly, it took nearly a generation for his discovery to become accepted.  He faced strong opposition from doctors and surgeons who didn’t believe him and weren’t about to change their ways.  In the end, however, because of Lister’s perseverance in teaching what he knew was right, and from the dramatic success of those who followed his procedures, his ideas finally took hold, and at his death, he was a world-wide hero.

Friday Fax


Dear Colleague,

Today Terrence McKeegan reports on the Holy Father’s historic vigil for all unborn human life.  People from around the world participated in their local churches, and 10,000 people participated in Rome.  

Amanda Pawloski reports on the UN Youth Conference.  For lack of money, sponsors, and organization the conference might not happen next summer.    

Spread the word. 


Austin Ruse

Pope Leads Worldwide Prayer Vigil for Unborn Life

By Terrence McKeegan, J.D.

ROME, December 2 (C-FAM) Last Saturday, Pope Benedict XVI led an unprecedented global prayer vigil for unborn life in Rome that was repeated in countries around the world. Ten thousand faithful jammed St. Peter’s Basilica including many children who were presented to the Holy Father.

In his remarks, the pope offered support to those working in the pro-life movement. “I wish to express my thanks to all who have taken up this invitation and those who are specifically dedicated to welcoming and safeguarding human life in different situations of fragility, especially in its early days and in its early stages,” he said. 

Dithering Over UN Youth Conference

By Amanda Pawloski

NEW YORK, December 2 (C-FAM) If present dithering is any indication, the promised global conference celebrating the UN International Year of Youth may not happen after all.

As it stands now, governments at the UN cannot decide on a date, sponsor, funding, or venue. However, some fear that a hasty youth conference will be thrown together at the last minute, given the example set by the World Youth Conference in Mexico this past August. 

Train a Child



  • Had rehearsals for his tap class end-of-year production of Wonderland, playing one of the Queen’s guards;
  • Had rehearsals as a guard for King Nebuchadnezzar in Elim’s production of It’s Cool in the Furnace
  • Hmm maybe there’s a theme developing here.
  • Started attending The Rock Church’s FITE (youth group) instead of Onslow Community Church’s TYG.  Not sure of the desirability or rightness of changing, but at least he’s wanting to go to something reasonably positive.


  • Is getting jaded with the hard work of deconstructing and re-building robots now.  Now we’ll see if he has an engineer’s tenacity;
  • Is enjoying learning guitar chords from me, and we can play simple duets now;
  • Has discovered that St John’s award merit badges for community service, and that helping to lead Children’s Church at Align qualifies.  He’s much more focussed there now.
  • We sold his unused, second-hand drums on Trade Me.  He got a reasonable portion of the money.  He promptly chose a replacement toy.  We went to Dick Smith to buy a walkie-talkie set with 3km range.  We discovered the batteries were extra and expensive.  He negotiated a loan with me.  He was not entirely pleased with his new acquisition, until he’d earned some money to extinguish the debt.  Now he’s happy and learned a valuable lesson (so has Dad – I won’t do that again).


  • Went away on St John’s camp.  Made a friend.  Talked heaps.  Slept little.  A great time was had by all.
  • House was quiet in her absence.  Ah bliss.
  • Was also in Angela Goodall’s Dance Academy production of Wonderland.  Played one of the tapping caterpillars.  Very cute.  As the oldest in her class, was a capable leader.

Why I Am Pro-Israel


Weekly Review: November 28, 2010

Dear Friend of Jerusalem,

Here are the latest headlines from the One Jerusalem Blog:

  • He Didn’t Care if Children Died
    No we are not talking about Adolph Hitler or Joseph Stalin or Mao. We are reporting the words of a teenage Muslim who wanted to blow innocent people up at a Christmas celebration in Portland Oregon.  Mohamed Osam Mohamud is the…
  • Palestinian Blogger Arrested by Fatah: 
    The press keeps referring to Fatah as moderates, the civilized ones Israel should embrace. One Jerusalem has often documented the uncivil nature of Fatah and its Palestinian Authority (PA). To their long list of incivility to their own people you…
  • Muslims Violate French Law…While the Police Watch: 
    watch the video
  • Palestinian Authority Denies Jewish Origin of the Western Wall: 
    Over the years, One Jerusalem has recorded examples of Palestinian leaders denying an ancient Jewish presence in Jerusalem. Well this week they publicly displayed their contempt for Israel’s claim that the Western Wall was constructed by Jews. In an official…
  • Jews Are The Offspring of Pigs and Apes: 
    That Muslim children in England are learning such drivel is (unfortunately) not a great surprise. But what is surprising and encouraging is that the British news media is treating this story with the contempt it deserves.The Daily Mail, Britain’s largest…

Sincerely, The One Jerusalem Team


She Learned Her Lesson

I was the new teacher for the toddler-age Sunday school class, which included my 14-month-old daughter. During a lesson on creation, I’d ask questions like, "Who made the trees?" or "Who made the sun?" and the children would respond, "God did." I was pleased the children learned quickly that God made everything.

Teaching lessons at home was more of a challenge. I had tried hard to teach my daughter to pick up her toys, and she wasn’t learning very quickly. One day I walked into the living room to find toys scattered everywhere. In exasperation I asked, "Who made this mess?" My daughter looked at me with a proud smile and said, "God did!"

—Carol J. Rivest, "Heart to Heart," Today’s Christian Woman

Events Schedule


In this section, I highlight dates, times and venues of events either I am presenting at, or of interest to METTLE.  I’m available for bookings.






Advanced Students Concert

Raroa Intermediate School



Telecom Christmas Party

TSB Arena


4-5 Dec

Angela Goodall’s Dance Academy presents Wonderland

Memorial Theatre, Victoria University of Wellington

Tane & Aimee Hippolite

10-12 Dec

It’s Cool In the Furnace

Elim Church Wellington

James et al


Robotics Scrimmage

Scots College



Christmas Carols

Grenada Village Community Hall



TechNet Unplugged

Intercontinental Wellington



Kids Bible Klub EOY performance

Newlands Christian Assembly

Aimee Hippolite


2010 Final Wellington Geek Dinner




Elim Carol Service

Wellington Elim






10-14 July 2011

PDC 10



Bible Reading 

You can look up for yourselves at:

End Notes

  • METTLE is an acronym for Men’s Evangelical Team Together for Learning Experiences. We are primarily Christian businessmen from Wellington, who meet occasionally in the CBD to encourage each other in our daily walk with Jesus. This Monthly Collaborative Blog (MCB) is our primary means of communication.  If you know of anyone who may benefit from this MCB, you are welcome to forward them along. Similarly, if your circumstances are such that membership in this distribution list is no longer relevant, then hit reply and type UNSUBSCRIBE to have it removed.
  • If you choose to respond to any item raised in this MCB, please indicate clearly which items you wish to remain Private, as any correspondence may be considered Public and could be published.
  • If this newsletter has been of benefit to you, why not drop a line and say so.  Or better yet, visit the TVORNZ website to read past issues and add a comment!
  • Published by The Voice of Reason, New Zealand, copyright © 2006-2010

METTLE Monthly Newsletter Volume 5 Issue 10


Volume 5 Issue 10

October 2010

Hippolite Musings 


In October, I:

  1. Took the kids to Godspace at Hope Centre, Lower Hutt;
  2. Went to a Science Fiction themed party at my sister’s house for her grandson (school holidays);
  3. Attended and took the minutes of the committee meeting of the Northern Racquets Squash Club;
  4. Had a couple of family nights together (first one in ages – played Triominos, Yahtzee, discussed stuff & prayed);
  5. Played a couple of games of squash in the Spring Interclub season, all with varying levels of disappointment (some high, some low);
  6. Started rehearsals for Elim Church Christmas Pantomime “It’s Cool in the Furnace” playing the over-the-top role of King Nebuchadnezzar;
  7. Continued counselling a buddy facing tough marital issues;
  8. Received training on the Primavera project management tool used at Telecom;
  9. Took oldest son to watch Verdi’s Macbeth at St James;
  10. Conducted interviews for a development position here at Telecom;
  11. Attended Elim Church Wellington;
  12. Attended Align Church Taita;
  13. Attended and took the minutes of the committee meeting of the Grenada Village Residents Association;
  14. Received counselling for a marital issue of my own;
  15. Visited work colleague at home to coo over new born babe;
  16. Finally fixed the electric lawn mower (sourced the right fuse with the correct amperage and managed to jam it in);
  17. Took my son to battle robots at the VEX Scrimmage at Wellington High School;
  18. Attended Latino Fire conference at Wellington Elim to hear Sergio Scataglini speak.  Blogged it here;
  19. Attended Wellington SQL Server User Group meeting (first one in ages) on the topic of “SSIS and Powershell focused toward Database Maintenance and Investigation of Common Errors”;
  20. Participated in 100 day plan review – starting to become more forward thinking rather than reactive at work;
  21. Studied for exam 70-503: “Technology Specialist: Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 – Windows Communication Foundation Application Development
  22. Hosted Fiona’s niece;
  23. Attended a Microsoft seminar on “Delivering Business Value with Visual Studio 2010” at the Intercontinental Hotel;
  24. Attended and took minutes of the leader’s meeting for Align Church Taita;
  25. Took a day off work to spend time with Aimee for her 9th birthday celebration (got a haircut, watched “Legend of the Guardians 3D”, visited Te Papa);
  26. Travelled to the Wairarapa (Tauherenikau Racecourse) to learn how the St Johns Youth Competitions are run; and
  27. Visited family;
  28. Took kids to Halloween Alternative party at Johnsonville Salvation Army.


World Outreach



  • INDIA. WO missionary & midwife Jes La Bleu is still waiting to receive her residency visa so she can join her colleagues in Bihar province where medical assistance will be offered to pregnant village women.  The waiting time back home in the States has not been wasted as Jes has benefited from various ministry events, but she is now ready to go.  Please pray that the authorities will issue her visa in the next few days.
  • PAKISTAN.  The urgent need now for victims of the horrendous floods that covered 1/5th of the country recently, is warm clothing & bedding in time for winter. The floods destroyed so much that all most families had were the clothes they are wearing. World Outreach is hoping that through the generosity of God’s people we can remit  hearty sum of funds by the end of November that will allow our Pakistan flood relief partners to buy blankets & warm clothing for hundreds of vulnerable families.  Please keep Pakistan in prayer. The nation needs the Lord. By demonstrating the love of God to the destitute through kindness, will help open their hearts to receive the love of God.
  • UK / EUROPE. Mary & I covet prayer as we travel to the UK & Europe (Oct 27 – Nov 16) for a series of ministry engagements and World Outreach meetings over 3 weeks. Besides keeping safe and in good health along the way, we desire wisdom, favour and the anointing of the Lord on us for our various appointments and ministry times.   
  • MOZAMBIQUE. Emmanuel & Martha Mulenga are conducting 2 leadership training events this Nov in Quelimane (10-13) and in Nampula (14 – 21) and request that the preparation and the actual programs themselves be covered in prayer. While many of the invited leaders are passionate in serving the Lord, they are also young in their new found faith, therefore solid Biblical teaching & training is essential for them and the people they are discipling. The Mulengas ask that we also pray for travel safety & protection for all involved and that a rich anointing of the Holy Spirit will be present and experienced at both events.  Thank you.  
  • INDONESIA. Sam & Carol Soukotta are truly grateful for the generosity of God’s people who have given to help Tawangmangu Bible College (TBC) secure the ownership of the land where it is located on in Central Java.  They have put a 30% deposit down on land price and in total have received more than 60% of what the gov’t valued the land for. Other people / businesses on Mt Tawangmangu are also in the same position of needing to buy their (leasehold) land from the gov’t, and many of them have appealed against the high valuation that the gov’t has imposed on them. The Soukottas have reported that things are very much in limbo while these appeals are been considered by the gov’t, and ask that we pray that the gov’t will reduce their value price for the TBC land.  The next couple of months will be critical. 
  • Remember too Jason & Anne Kelly and ministry colleagues in the eastern islands of Indonesia. Their humanitarian & community program to poor ‘M’ children in one particular island / village has drawn attention & criticism by some in the local gov’t.  Please pray for the team’s protection and that the work can carry on unheeded.       
  • NZ. Allen & Charlotte Teal write: “We would really appreciate prayer for a Missionary Enrichment Retreat we are conducting, to be held in Taupo from 26th – 31st October.  There are 18 participants and this is a precious time as they take time out for refreshment and renewal.  Please pray for rest and refreshment for the 18  participants, for good bonding and building of trust in the group, for God to meet each person where they are in their experience, and for spiritual, emotional and physical renewal for those who are exhausted.” Thank you.   


  • PAKISTAN. Earlier this month WO conducted a leadership conference in Karachi where some 550 delegates were registered from many parts of the country – see photo attachment. Two of the three night meetings were open to the public with 3000 and 5000 coming respectively.  The numerous testimonies afterwards reveal that the conference was truly a life changing experience for many. On two distinct occasions the Holy Spirit moved powerfully over the delegation for a prolonged period of time, and delegates soaked in His presence.
  • RETREATS. Two separate regional field retreats were conducted for WO personnel in Thailand & Indonesia (West Kalimantan) in the past few weeks.  The respective 42 and 70 field personnel who attended were so blessed, encouraged and refreshed by these “time out” events that saw them step away from busy schedules.     
  • TESTIMONIES. # Along with members of a WO team in Thailand we are rejoicing over the salvation of a Buddhist monk who came to surrender his life to Jesus after his ‘favourite nephew’ witnessed to him and prayed for healing of both the monk’s eyesight and leg problems.  Jesus healed both and today he is passionately following the Lord and studying His Word.  # Lila, a businesswoman & former Hindu before she encountered and fell in love with Jesus Christ this year for the very first time when a friend witnessed to her. With a God given passion she took every opportunity to share Christ with whoever came to talk business, whether or not her business benefited financially. Her boldness caught many customers by surprise. And God blessed her, so much so that in the past six months she has seen more than 150 people become followers of Jesus Christ, some being whole families. She has had the joy of water baptizing each one of them. Her love for Christ and obedience to His Word has also seen numerous healings, miracles and deliverances as she speaks the Word of God over lives.
  • Please continue to pray for “spiritual breakthroughs” for our many and varied WO ministries around the world. All our teams know that unless the Holy Spirit inspires and breathes upon their outreaches / programs / enterprises, then it can be a lot of hard work but little fruit. Our combined longing is to see new souls added to the Kingdom of God!  

John Elliott

Koinonia House News



  • An EMP Spells Disaster – Without The Kaboom
    October 27, 2010
    The sky erupts. Cities darken, food spoils and homes fall silent. Civilization collapses. End-of-the-world novel? A video game? Or could such a scenario loom in America’s future? Electromagnetic pulses (EMP) are oversized outbursts of atmospheric electricity. Whether powered by geomagnetic storms or by nuclear blasts, their resultant intense magnetic fields can induce ground currents strong enough to burn out power lines and electrical equipment across state lines.
    – USA Today
  • Dead Sea Scrolls Fragments in Texas
    October 26, 2010
    Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (SWBTS) in Fort Worth, Texas has just added three Dead Sea Scroll fragments to its existing collection of three, making it the most sizeable group of scroll fragments to be held by an institution of higher education in the US. SWBTS acquired the new fragments from a European private collector through a gift from a friend of the seminary. The new fragments contain parts of Deuteronomy 9:25–10:1, Deuteronomy 12:11-14, and Psalm 22:4-13.
    – SWBTS
  • Did ‘Molecular Tinkering’ Cause Evolution In the Cell?
    October 25, 2010
    In a study published in the online scientific journal PLoS Biology, the team gathered evidence to support their hypothesis that nuclear receptors evolved through "molecular tinkering." They wrote, "Our findings indicate that NR LBDs evolved their functional diversity by tinkering with a ligand-dependent transcriptional activator." However, the authors overlooked a few important considerations, each of which would make their conclusion premature.
    – ICR
  • China Denying The West Its Rare Earth Metals
    October 19, 2010
    China, which has been blocking shipments of crucial minerals to Japan for the last month, has now quietly halted some shipments of those materials to the United States and Europe, three industry officials said this week. The Chinese action, involving rare earth minerals that are crucial to manufacturing many advanced products, seems certain to further intensify already rising trade and currency tensions with the West.
    – The New York Times
  • Extreme Surfers For Christ
    October 05, 2010
    For the 18th year running the extreme sports missions organisation Christian Surfers UK have held their big outreach surf contest, the Jesus Surf Classic. The organisation was able to attract more than 100 of the UK’s top surfers to the North Devon’s Croyde Bay, providing a great opportunity for Christian Surfers ‘to be a Christian presence and witness’ in the inspirational world of the surfing community.
    – Inspire Magazine

Why I Am A Climate Realist

Dairy Cows Produce Fewer Greenhouse Gas Emissions Than Previously Reported

Much has been written about cows’ role in producing greenhouse gas emissions. (Think burps and farts.)

A 2006 United Nations report stated that livestock were responsible for 18% of these emissions. To be fair, this statistic also included land use and degradation, deforestation, pesticide use and water pollution. Cow flatulence, however, continues to incur blame (not to mention really dorky jokes).

Fear not, bovine lovers: Researchers at the University of Arkansas and Michigan Technological University have found that the dairy industry is responsible for only about 2% of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions………………

Read full article at:

Why I Am A Creationist


Doctor to the Disadvantaged

Dr. Lara Wieland (daughter of CMI–Australia’s Managing Director Dr. Carl Wieland) turned down a comfortable career in general practice to provide vital medical care to Australian Aboriginal communities. Her decision was directly influenced by the teaching she received from a young age that all people are equal because we are all in God’s image, and all descended from Adam.

Her inspiring story shows the practical results of believing the Bible’s history.

Biblical Creation provides answer to problem of suffering

If God created the world ‘very good’, why is there death and suffering? Intelligent design advocate William Dembski attempts to answer this by arguing that the Fall was retroactive. But even he admits that biblical creation has a stronger position. Read CMI–UK/Europe CEO Philip Bell’s review of William Dembski’s startling treatise called The End of Christianity.

Is Nature a 67th book of Scripture?

Some progressive creationists argue that God’s revelation in nature is as authoritative as Scripture. But general revelation functions differently from special revelation. Read our analysis in General and Special Revelation.

Who should teach children?

In a weekend feedback one correspondent believes that parents should not indoctrinate their children with Christianity.
Lita Cosner responds and argues that this is precisely the Christian parent’s most important responsibility.

This week’s classic: “It’s not science”.

In this article from 2002, Don Batten explains the difference between origins science, which deals with unrepeatable one-time events in history, and operational science which deals with repeatable and testable phenomena. Understanding this important distinction allows us to answer people who claim that evolution is science and creation isn’t. This is a key article in helping us understand that we do not need to be intimidated by science.

Why I Am Pro Maori


Ahakoa he iti, he pounamu: Māori Stormtrooper 

How to… 

Engage the Culture

My mate Matt has this to say…

Hi James and Dave

Gentlemen, I thought you might both be interested in the following Stuff article.

I am unsure of the context for this discussion, so I cannot draw huge conclusions from it. It suggests that this is part of the Bishops’ Synod, so perhaps it is for shaping Roman Catholic policy??

In fact, I find some points made to be confusing. The comment at the end quoting a senior Sunni Muslim advisor to the Lebanese government seems to be nebulous to me.  It is not clear what the intention of the speaker’s statement is. Indeed I find myself asking the question, did the speaker deliberately make a nebulous statement that is open to interpretation?

The statement is quoted as:

"There is the rise of fundamentalism inside Israel, and in Christian and Zionist movements in the United States, and there is the rise of Islamic fundamentalism also," said Sammak.

"This is a negative phenomenon, and not only Christians are suffering from it."

A core of the topic is fundamentalism.

Does this mean:

  • The speaker considers fundamentalism in itself as an “evil” in all societies and religions?
  • All fundamentalism/fundamentalists are the same?
  • Fundamentalism is negative and causes suffering?
  • That fundamentalism and extremism are always closely aligned positions?
  • Zionism is linked with fundamentalism?
  • Zionism is linked with extremism?
  • Zionism is necessarily negative?
  • Christianity in the United States is linked with fundamentalism?
  • Christianity in the United States is linked with extremism?
  • Christianity in the United States is necessarily negative?
  • Fundamentalism is rising within Israel? Does the speaker mean fundamentalist Jews or extreme right-wing political beliefs? Or even a simple commitment to maintaining Israel as a democratic state

The problem I have with this is that there is no clear definition of “fundamentalism”. Moderate Christians, Jews or Muslims might believe in the fundamentals of the Bible, the Torah or the Koran; does this make them instantly aligned with fundamentalists who cause damage? If a person calls themselves a Christian, then they throw a grenade into a mosque full of Koran believing Muslims, because he or she believes that the Bible is instructing them to do so, are they are fundamentalist or merely deranged (probably the latter – please note, I am deliberately making this person a Christian rather than a Muslim or of another particular religion and/or culture)? And do people realise that there is a difference between fundamentalism and derangement? Are the people in the mosque fundamentalists too, if they firmly believe their religious writings and rites?

I believe that there is a difference between holding a fundamental belief and being a person so focussed on the fundamentals that people do not matter, to the point that they practice extremist actions. I also believe that someone who truly holds onto the fundamentals of the Bible is a sound person, someone who wants to rely on the precedents and precepts that God has recorded and installed for us. This person might well be referred to as a “fundamentalist”. And a pragmatist. And someone who might also show compassion, love, decency and other Godly attributes.

What are your thoughts? James, Dave, please feel free to publish this discussion on your blogs, if you see fit to do so.


James says: I have read that article, and concur that it left me with a vaguely unappealing feeling of the moral equivalence of all religions, or some other such nonsense.

Also, in political news:

Submissions for the Tax (Income Sharing) Bill has been extended to Friday 10 Dec, so that give us a little more time to make submissions and to lobby politicians.

Follow link on

Interesting to note that the Labour Party at their conference this weekend are now talking about putting in place policies to support at-home parents, supporting investment in parenting and other family friendly measures. The language is getting through!


Here is my submission (reference number PD8GYMA):

I believe Income Sharing is the fairest system to support families.  There are already plenty of other systems in place to support solo parents, but two parent, single income families get the rough end of the deal currently.  I have always believed Income Sharing to be fairer, ever since we did a study of it back at secondary school over 20 years ago!  Please support my wife and I to continue being the primary carers of our own children.  Tax redistribution via Working for Families makes little sense when the IRD and WFF adds no value to the process and only "clips the ticket" on the way through. 

Great Scientists…

…Who Believed the Bible

Bernhard Riemann (1826-1866)

Bernhard Riemann developed the concept of non-Euclidian geometry, which was used by Einstein in his development of the theory of relativity. Riemann was also a Christian and had hoped to go into the ministry until he got sidetracked by his interest in mathematics. He apparently made several efforts to prove the validity of the book of Genesis using mathematical principles.

Friday Fax


Dear Colleague,

I continue to welcome you to the new and improved Friday Fax. Besides better and crisper writing and editing, we are also running positive stories rather than the continual rasher of negative stories.

Today, we report on a near revolt of UN member states against a special report calling for a new “right” to sexual education. It was heartwarming to see so many countries rising up en masse against such radicalism as this.

We also report on the phenomenon of the Manhattan Declaration which has nearly 500,000 signers and has inspired similar documents in three countries and one US State.

Spread the word.

Yours Sincerely,
Austin Ruse

Countries Slam Attempts to Create New “Right” to Sexual Education at UN

By Samantha Singson

New York, October 28 (C-FAM) – Angry delegates took to the UN floor this week to denounce a report that promotes a new human right to explicit sexual education for young children.

The African and Caribbean blocs led the widespread hostility toward the report by registering their “strong rejection” and “strong disapproval.”  Read More

A Global Movement On The Rise

By Amanda Pawloski

NEW YORK, October 28 (C-FAM) The authors penned their declaration a year ago not knowing it would spur an international movement.

Now nearly a half million backers have signed the Manhattan Declaration, a “call of Christian conscience” originally spurred by concern that U.S. leaders had lost sight of the meaning of religious freedom. In the months since, the declaration has not only reaffirmed Christian values, but has spawned similar movements on two other continents and an unprecedented display of ecumenical unity.  Read More

Train a Child


In October,

  • Tane discovered he doesn’t like opera (but at least he went to see for himself first); he is negotiating appropriate friendships in a Christian youth group setting;  he is experimenting with appropriate disclosure via Facebook.

  • Hamish discovered it’s harder to construct a robot than to deconstruct one; he is learning the value and sheer hard work involved in grooming the yard; he is experimenting with various manual skills at Techni-Craft (wood, metal, fabric) class.

  • Aimee discovered the joy of longing (for her much anticipated birthday at month end); she is settling into her role as junior helper at Align Church; she is so cute in her St John’s uniform!

Why I Am Pro-Israel


Petition to the UN

Prosecute Ahmadinejad

On September 23rd, Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad addressed the United Nations General Assembly.

While some left the hall in protest, many stayed and even applauded this madman.

We believe that the next time Mahmoud Ahmadinejad appears before an international tribunal, it must not be as an honored guest before the United Nations General Assembly. It must be as a criminal in the dock of the International Criminal Court. And we have some very important friends who share this belief. We have joined forces with these friends to produce a powerful new video promoting our petition to indict Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for the crime of incitement to genocide. We pray you’ll join us too by watching the video and then signing the petition.

Click to watch video

For the sake of those who died in the Holocaust he denies,

For the sake of those who would die in the Holocaust he threatens,

For the sake of all who could be victims of future genocides,

Sign the Petition

Blessings to you and those you love,

Pastor John Hagee
National Chairman
Christians United for Israel

David Brog
Executive Director
Christians United for Israel



Resourceful Woman Finds Police

Portland, Oregon, Chief of Police Mark Kroeker tells this story about when he was an officer in Los Angeles. A woman was upstairs in her bedroom when she heard someone breaking in downstairs. She crawled under her bed with the phone and called 911, but the emergency system was having a problem, and it gave her a menu of options. Realizing that this would take a minute or more, her mind raced for other ways to reach the police.

She devised a resourceful plan. She grabbed a phone book and called the nearest Winchell’s donut shop. She asked the employee who answered if there were any police officers in the shop, and the answer was, "Of course!" An officer was put on the line, the frightened woman told him her problem, he sprinted to his car and arrived in time to capture the thief.

—Mark Kroeker, from a speech given at a banquet for Multnomah College (March 5, 2002), in Portland, Oregon

Events Schedule


In this section, I highlight dates, times and venues of events either I am presenting at, or of interest to METTLE.  I’m available for bookings.

When What Where Who
3-Nov Why I Believe in Creation Science Elim Church Wellington James
5-Nov Guy Fawkes Celebration Wellington Waterfront N/A
6-Nov Robotics Scrimmage Wellington High School N/A
6-Nov E-Day Westpac Stadium N/A
7-Nov Flexi-Sunday Align Church Taita N/A
9-Nov Gas Bags LifePoint Dunno
13-15 Nov Heaven’s Gates Hell’s Flames Avalon AOG N/A
13-Nov Gladiator Movie Salvation Army Johnsonville N/A
13-Nov Phoenix vs Mariners Westpac Stadium N/A
15-Nov Grenada Village Residents Association AGM Grenada Village Hall Bruce Patterson,
James Hippolite
19-20 Nov Flourish Women’s Conference Upper Hutt AOG  
26-27 Nov Stayin’ Alive
Pro-life workshop for youth
Grace Hall, 8 Tongariro St, Paraparaumu

Bob McCoskrie (Family First NZ)
Brendan Malone (FLI NZ)
Greg Flemming (Maxim Institute)

4-Dec Advanced Students Concert Raroa Intermediate School Tane
4-Dec Telecom Christmas Party TSB Arena N/A
10-12 Dec It’s Cool In the Furnace Elim Church Wellington James et al
12-Dec Robotics Scrimmage Scots College N/A

Bible Reading 

You can look up for yourselves at:

End Notes

  • METTLE is an acronym for Men’s Evangelical Team Together for Learning Experiences. We are primarily Christian businessmen from Wellington, who meet occasionally in the CBD to encourage each other in our daily walk with Jesus. This Monthly Collaborative Blog (MCB) is our primary means of communication.  If you know of anyone who may benefit from this MCB, you are welcome to forward them along. Similarly, if your circumstances are such that membership in this distribution list is no longer relevant, then hit reply and type UNSUBSCRIBE to have it removed.
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