Tag: Robyn

A new addition…

You may have noticed it’s a little quiet around here.

Here’s why.

This is Xavier Macleay Campbell. He was born on Monday. We think we’ll keep him.


Again, for the record, my wife is amazing, and I’m thankful to God for my little family – and I continue to be blown away by the wondrous marvels of modern medicine and Australian health care.

On plundered gold.

My project is finished.

Here it is (PDF).

It was an MA project and so was externally marked. I’ve been waiting nervously by my inbox for several weeks.

Feel free to read it. Or not. It represents a significant amount of time and thought for me, and a huge amount of sacrifice for Robyn, and others who love me and let me spend hours reading, writing, and editing. I do think it’s of value for more than just me, and it has certainly become somewhat paradigmatic for how I read the Bible, how I’ll teach it, and how I understand our task as communicators.

Writing this project almost did me in. I still have profound writer’s block. I’m still mentally exhausted. The thought of sitting at the keyboard and writing anything else still hurts a little. It’s fair to say I was a little too invested in this task.

I should also mention here, given this is my soapbox, that I’m exceptionally proud of Robyn (my wife, for context), who finished her own Masters project, and thus her M Div in the last few weeks. She is amazing. And she did it while heavily pregnant and chasing our 18 month old daughter around. I do have lots to be thankful for.

I’ll be posting some reflections on what this project contains in coming days. Once I recover from the ego-crushing soul-destroying heartbreak of reading the marker’s comments, and having the idol that was mine own writing crushed into powder and scattered in a garden somewhere. It hurt so much that tonight I vaguebooked.

On a related note – see this from XKCD.

Keller was right. You know how big an idol something has become by how much it hurts when it gets cast down. I just want to mope in a dark room.

But I’ll get over it.

Here is the abstract:

In this paper I develop a theological framework for excellent and effective persuasive communication consistent with the message of the gospel of the crucified Lord Jesus in a particular socio-historical context.

To this end, I outline the development of communication mediums and methods relevant to the production of Biblical texts. This culminates with the rise of rhetoric with a particular emphasis on Aristotle’s three proofs: pathos, ethos, and logos, especially as developed for the Roman context by Cicero. I outline a model of sublime rhetoric as described by Longinus in On the Sublime, suggesting that truly excellent and ethical communicative acts involve a “sublime” consistency between Aristotle’s proofs.  Next I provide an overview of relevant modern communication theory, including speech-act and public relations theory, engaging with influential Public Relations theorist James Grunig to assess current models for excellent and ethical communication with external publics.

At this point I turn to establish a theological framework for understanding the relationship between the communicative acts of the communicative God, and a proposed communicative praxis based on the incarnation as the paradigmatic act of contextual communication.

This framework emphasises the functional aspect of the imago dei, the link between the imago dei and the imitatio Christi in Pauline thought and praxis, and an understanding of creation as “gold” to be adapted and adorned for communication about the creator.  I then assess this framework against communicative acts contained in the Bible – the Wisdom Literature, especially Proverbs, and Paul’s Corinthian Correspondence, against contemporary communicative acts – the Wisdom of Amenemope, and Cicero’s De Oratore. Finally, I turn to Luther’s Reformation campaign as a model of an early modern Christian communicative praxis consistent with this framework. I conclude that Grunig’s four models of public relations are inadequate for Christian communication, and propose a fifth model – an incarnational, self-renouncing cruciform communicative praxis – as the basis for sublime communication about the crucified Lord Jesus.


How my wife hears Radiohead

A couple of weeks ago I spent $130 really well, and wasted another $130 at the same time. Robyn and I went to see Radiohead.

This video has some language in it. But it’s pretty much how what she experienced one of the best shows I’ve ever been to. It’s amazing what sitting next to somebody who is experiencing the same event you’re enjoying in this manner does to you…

Meanwhile, I was watching something more like this… (skip to 1:44:08, I can’t get the timed embed code thing to work…)

Five years… many reasons

There’s a bit of soppiness ahead – if that’s not your thing – and sloppiness is… check out this elephant flinging poo at a zoo visitor.

I’ve been married to Robyn for five years today. Time flies. I still love her, she still loves me. It’s a privilege being married to someone who, in the immortal words of Jerry Maguire, “completes me” in so many ways.


I do a lot of stuff, I couldn’t do half of it if Robyn wasn’t organising me, encouraging me, sustaining me, or keeping me humble. She also does lots of clever, surprisingly creative, and other person centred stuff every day.

I’ll never forget a moment at National Training Event a few years back, when, after I’d asked Phillip Jensen what sort of cures for arrogance he could recommend for arrogant young men, he said “get married” (before saying go to the foot of the cross daily) – it’s a slow working cure. But I trust it’s working.

I’ve particularly enjoyed watching Robyn flourish as a mother this year.

So, because blogging is the love language I most naturally speak (though it is not the love language she most naturally hears) – indulge me just one moment with this gushy stuff, where I address Robyn directly…

Thank you, I love you, I look forward to many more years of being married to you.

They say that behind every great man there’s a great woman – I’m not claiming to be great, but if ever I decide I want to be I’ve got that ingredient sorted.

Holiday snaps

So I’ve been absent from blogworld for a few days. What’d I miss?

In the real world our little family were taking our first family holiday – we had been planning to go to the Gold Coast hinterlands, right up until the car was packed, and I was printing out our wotif booking. Only to discover that some idiot had booked the accommodation for the wrong weekend. After a mad scramble around the interwebs we booked three nights in Stanthorpe at the Sommerville Valley Resort.

Soph was a bit excited en route.

Here’s the view from the balcony.

Here’s the view from the lounge room.

We saw the pyramids. Well, a slightly lamer Australian version…

Went to a fun jam shop where Soph charmed the storekeepers. Which was lucky.

Soph, in turn, was charmed by an ornamental peacock in our room. She couldn’t get enough of it.

We added a bit to the trip with a Tour De France style experience on the way home.

And now, the craziness of college begins for another semester.


Wow. What a semester. Luckily I’ve only got to do this three more times…

Sadly, my “break” is shaping up to be almost busier than the semester. Plenty of deadlines to meet. PR work to do. Sermons to preach. Coffee to roast (and make). Cafes to check out.

Hopefully we’ll get away somewhere for some days so if there are a few days of radio silence maintained here – that’s why.

In the meantime, I’ve got a backlog of things to post here that will hopefully keep you amused. No doubt I’ll find some semi-serious things to write about… In the mean time, here’s a cute photo of my baby girl – who is now just shy of half a year old.

I’m looking forward to spending some time with my girls in the next couple of weeks.

Robyn’s (and Sophia’s) first Mother’s Day

Today was fun. On the back of an incredibly busy weekend we spent the afternoon painting with Soph. This was Robyn’s Mother’s Day present.

Well. The painting, a photo, and a creatively paint stained white onesie. Which I’ll frame or something.

We appreciate that this day is both a) very commercial, and b) hard for many people, but there’s something nice about the opportunity to recognise mums.

I think one of the things that being a parent has taught me, in these four and a bit months, is the sort of emotional investment, love, and energy, my own parents made in me. So thanks mum (and dad).

I’m also incredibly in awe of Robyn’s transformation. She’s such a natural at being a mum. It’s incredible.

Welcoming Sophia Campbell

At about 10.43 this morning our world changed forever. Hopefully for the better. With the safe arrival, via Caesarian (somewhat unexpectedly after a routine appointment yesterday) of our amazing daughter Sophia. I’m very proud of my wife for carting our child around for nine months on the inside. And absolutely delighted to meet our daughter in the flesh. I suspected it was a girl all along.

We’re thankful to God for a safe delivery, great medical care before, during and after birth, and the love we’ve felt from friends and family who have expressed joy with us. Having children is not something we take for granted, and we grieve with those who feel a pang of sadness with this sort of announcement. But God is good – he answers prayers – and we can testify to that in a new way today.

Fatherhood changes a man. So much that my original very funny title for this post is now buried in the tags.





And great grandparents…

Are all overjoyed with the news. It has been a pretty rollercoaster year for Robyn and I, so this is a nice way to end it. And being a Christmas baby, I’m thrilled for my daughter’s sake that she doesn’t have to share my birthday.

Four Years

I have been married to my wonderful and talented wife for four years today.

That makes me happy, the prospect of seventy odd more years, and the impending birth of our first baby (in December, this is the first time I’ve mentioned it here) makes me even more happy.

Here she is showing off her talents with firearms at the Townsville army base.

Our jet setting lifestyle means blogging will be a little irregular here until next week some time. We came back from mission in Townsville, spent a week at college, hit the road to Byron Bay for our anniversary, and tomorrow we’re in Melbourne for a wedding – stay tuned for some cafe reviews on thebeanstalker.com.

I’d like to point out that I resisted the urge to refer to Robyn as “my smokin’ hot wife”… I do still think we’re cut out for church planting.

Bieber Fever: My wife is funny

My wife is pretty against things posted online that start with “my wife is” and end with a husband spamming the world about how awesome their wife is. We get it. You love your wife and she is awesome. That’s great. It’s why you’re married.

But my wife is going to see Justin Bieber’s 3D movie. She doesn’t know it yet. But that’s her punishment for signing me up to receive Justin Bieber’s ever popular twitter feed in my Google Reader. She’s funny, but this joke may have backfired.

She loves a little bit of Justin. She sings his hit song that goes “Baby, Baby, Baby Oh” when she thinks I’m not listening. She’s been looking forward to the movie for a while. I have a photo to prove it.

My wife is funny. And hot. We’re going to plant a mega church. Justin Bieber will be our “Worship Director”…

The last of the Mexicans

That would be a Daniel Day Lewis movie I’d watch… However, if you have a picture of our non-Mexican Mexican friend to submit for the “Make Him A Mexican” challenge – today is the day. Last chance to win a fabulous Mexican prize. I promise you will be disappointed by whatever it is I choose to send your way should you win.

Entries have dried up somewhat, but a couple of people have suggested they’d be entering, and haven’t yet. So get cracking. Here’s a late submission from my wife, Robyn, who is working up some mad photoshopping skillz.

The “Make me a Mexican” Challenge

Ok. So yesterday I posted about how I’d received a misdirected email with this photo and the words “make him a Mexican”…

Not knowing the original sender, or the guy in question, but being a helpful soul I complied. And I asked for further submissions. This post will serve to store all sch submissions (I’ve also asked my Facebook friends to help). Feel free to pass this on to everybody you know. I want as many Mexican photos of this guy as I can get, and I’ll eventually send the link to the guy who sent me the photo.

These three are examples of how easy making a Mexican is. All three have simply googled “Mexican Man” and stuck the guy’s head in the picture. This was Robyn’s first go at Photoshopping (well it was GIMP actually). You can do whatever you want. Use MS Paint. Just give him a Mexican flavour.

I will conjure up some sort of Mexican prize for the best.

1. From Therese (who used the same image and approach as me, though with tidier edges and a less fu manchu moustache)

2. From Robyn

3. From Ben

4. Another one from Ben.

5. And another one from Ben.

6. And another one from Ben.

7. Simone went for an artistic approach.

8. And a passport.

9. I had a couple more goes. Including two Doritos versions

10. And an old Mexican man in Black and White.

11. Here’s one from Andrew.

Raising dough

If you’re here for a post on breadmaking you’re in the wrong place. Robyn might do that later. The only thing I use a breadmaker for is roasting coffee… which tangentially leads into the point of this post.

Today is Robyn’s last day of teaching. Next month I’m giving up my job. We’re going to be poor uni students again which means stepping out of DINK time (double income no kids) into the great unknown of government supported poverty. We’re trying to come up with ways to earn money on the side. I am seriously investigating the possibility of upgrading my roasting capacity and flogging of roasted coffee to friends in Brisbane – if you’re interested in cheap, but quality, coffee beans – let me know.

Anyway, I’ve just read a couple of stories that had great ways to save (or make) money that I thought I’d share with you.

Frequent Flier programs are pretty much a license to print money for some US residents. They’ve cottoned on to this great scheme in courtesy of the Federal Mint. Now, this won’t work in Australia – I bought a $1 coin at our Mint for $2 when I was a young lad… I’m not sure what they cost now…

Here’s the scheme that has been cooked up in the states

At least several hundred mile-junkies discovered that a free shipping offer on presidential and Native American $1 coins, sold at face value by the U.S. Mint, amounted to printing free frequent-flier miles. Mileage lovers ordered more than $1 million in coins until the Mint started identifying them and cutting them off.

Coin buyers charged the purchases, sold in boxes of 250 coins, to a credit card that offers frequent-flier mile awards, then took the shipments straight to the bank. They then used the coins they deposited to pay their credit-card bills. Their only cost: the car trip to make the deposit.


BoingBoing reports on a guy who makes $45,000 a year cashing in discarded betting slips that are actually winners.

Mr. Leonardo, who is married with two teenagers, is hardly living on the fringes. He said that stooping brings him $100 to $300 a day, and more than $45,000 a year. Last month, he cashed in a winning ticket from bets made on races at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif., for $8,040. His largest purse came in 2006, when he received $9,500 from a Pick 4 wager (choosing the winners of four consecutive races) at Retama Park Race Track in Selma, Tex.

Got any cool money making schemes for Bible College students? Share them in the comments…

More on appropriate iPhone use

I meant to post this photo with the iPhone flowchart I posted this morning.

Clearly iPhones are designed to be used when you’re on holiday in Townsville…

They’re all playing LineUp.

Peddling Townsville

Given that I’ve only got another month or so of official duties “peddling” Townsville to the world, I think it’s a good idea to get out and enjoy the scenery while we can.

Robyn and I bought bikes a couple of months ago.

Yesterday we took to the streets (and parks) of Townsville in time to take some sunset photos at Aplin’s Weir.