25th August, 2019
Flicking through TV Channels; the end of a Science Show was on ABCTV. The picture on screen was a Blue Planet like Earth only larger. The host suggested it might possibly support human life. Unsure if this was speculation or more, I dismissed it from my mind, until 9 News announced QLD Astronomers have discovered 10 New Planets.
As a Christian the idea of a New Earth isn’t a surprise.
Revelation 21:1-8 predicts a New Heaven and New Earth to replace this tired planet when it has passed its use by date.
That prediction from the Bible was written some 2000 years ago to focus the attention of Christians on Jesus as Gods Plan for their future, at a time when they faced difficult days!
Presently the world at large is facing difficult days according to a UN IPCC Report.
They cite emissions; need of good food production and food waste as issues of concern. So this worlds burgeoning population can be fed!
If only the world at large knew of Gods Plan to resolve the Spiritual and Physical problems facing this Planet!
In Matthew 28:16ff Jesus Commands His followers to go into ‘ALL’ the world to share the Gospels Good News so others can trust in Jesus as God’s Plan for their future.
By sharing Gods Love we give people opportunity to make an informed decision, so they too can have Eternal Hope.
18th August, 2019
It’s interesting what you can learn on local radio. As an instance, a hairdresser was interviewed to explain how shampooing works best. Who would imagine that each individual hair on our head has scales like fish have scales? As we wash our hair in hot water the scales open to release dirt.
Then as we condition our hair we use cold water to close the scales to protect our hair from breakage.
It’s said in the Bible God knows us so well, even down to the hairs on our heads. Matt 10:30
If you compare shampooing of our hair with what Jesus can achieve in our lives He washes away every aspect of hurt or failure in our respective lives. He gives us new life to trust in Him. To carry the metaphor one step further; Gods Holy Spirit conditions our lives by leading us the way Jesus would have us follow in truth & love.
In walk with God, people poured cold water on the idea anyone could benefit from knowing Gods Love at work in or through their lives.
Comments similar to “he will get over it” can come from unexpected sources. Perhaps you have fielded similar rebukes by people dismissive of your faith.
Let me encourage you hold to onto your faith in Jesus and let God minister in every aspect of Eternal Life.
Yours in Christ
11th August, 2019
Every generation has songs that appeal to them:
Two songs that stand out for me are ‘Amazing Grace’ and ‘How Deep the Fathers Love’.
The first was written by John Newton 1725-1807 after he admitted to himself his involvement in slavery was wrong. Gradually but surely he understood his need of God’s forgiveness. The lyrics continue: “Amazing Grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me, I once was lost, but now am found I was blind but now I see”. Once he realised the depth of his sin, he called on Christ and two Amazing things happened. 1st he was forgiven all his wretchedness. 2nd his life found new meaning serving God by advocating the end of slavery.
My second song choice: ‘How Deep the Fathers Love For Me’ was written more recently; by Stuart Townsend. It also uses the word wretch but the meaning is more general in application because anyone singing it could apply it to themselves: How Deep the Fathers Love for Me! How vast beyond all measure, that He would give His only Son to make a wretch His treasure.
The concept that God treasures us is lost to many today: Just remember God did not send His Son Jesus to condemn anyone He came to save people from their doubts fears and failures.
We can experience Gods Amazing Grace for ourselves simply by asking for Jesus help.
Then we can live for God with a clear conscience.
Yours in Christ’s Name
4th August, 2019
Charles Stanly shares on how to be led by Christ’s Spirit!
By citing Dietrich Bonhoeffer; who was martyred for his faith in WWII. He found self denial was necessary to follow Jesus.
"Self-denial means knowing only CHRIST, and no longer oneself. It means seeing only Christ, who goes ahead of us, and no longer the path that is too difficult for us. Self denial is saying: HE goes ahead of us, hold fast to HIM!''
The Apostle Paul was led by the Spirit as the following extract from Romans 8:14 and Galatians 5:18 share.
"Both times the reference is to resisting ones own sinful -impulses as the flip side of one's own practice of righteousness. Taken rightly; LEADS means 'guides'. In Galatians 5:25 we find another reference to walking in the SPIRIT. This time how-ever, Paul uses a different and more descriptive Greek word----WALK. This word means to 'be in line with' or 'agree with'. The idea here is to walk in such a way as to avoid the moral land-mines buried all around us!”
When someone is following another there must be trust----even to the point of dependency!
"So I say, live by the SPIRIT and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature." Galatians 5:16
"Since we live by the SPIRIT let us keep in step with the SPIRIT." Galatians 5:26
Hopefully this offers you food for thought.
28th July, 2019
Colossians 2:8 Warns against becoming captivated by hollow deceptive philosophies based on human traditions… rather than on Christ.
This begs the question:
What is Jesus Christ to you?
Is he “the way the truth and the life” John 14:6? Or a philosophical concept, that you might be tempted to dismiss as obsolete?
The following extract from ‘Thought for the Day’ offers food for thought about the Person of Jesus.
“Truth is not just a concept to study. Truth is a Person.
JESUS did not say, 'I will teach you the truth,' HE said, 'I am the truth' (John 14:6).
When GOD gives you eternal life, HE gives you Himself (see John 17:3). HIS Holy Spirit, who lives in you, reveals truth... When the Holy Spirit reveals truth, HE is not teaching you a concept to consider. HE is leading you to a relationship with a Person. HE is your life!
When GOD gives you eternal life, HE gives you a person.
When you became a Christian,
JESUS didn't give you a thing;
HE gave you Himself!"
If or when someone seeks God’s will for their life God reveals the truth to them, alerting them to what He is doing in their life.
On that basis faith is an active interaction between God and the person who seeks to know Him rather than an idealistic concept derived from human tradition.
Knowing Jesus for your-self is important: a simple prayer for Gods help can overcome unbelief.
21st July, 2019
We celebrated the life of faith of our dear friend Bev on Tuesday. Narooma Church was packed with those who recalled someone who lived for Christ in good or hard times.
Each of our Churches were represented, but for those unable to be there let me share in part my recollections of Bev.
She was someone with a large wonderful generous and caring personality.
Undaunted by impact of Floods Bev arranged for Queensland flood victims to holiday in Narooma.
When Vanuatu experienced a Hurricane; Bev expressed her love of God and people in practical caring ways.
Together with Jim, Bev encouraged others to be generous &-loving as well.
Bev’s actions epitomized the essence of Christ’s Commands: To ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind’ and ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ [Matthew 22:37-39]
The point to take from the example of Bev’s life is she wasn’t trying to earn her Salvation! Rather her actions gave expression to her abiding faith in Jesus Christ!
If you recall Beverly Wilkinson remember she shared God’s blessing to bless others.
14th July, 2019
It is good to know people pray for us. As prayer creates inner awareness that others care.
In his letter to the church at Colossae the Apostle Paul assures the Colossians of his prayers of thanksgiving for their faith, love and hope.
He came by this knowledge when their minister Epaphras shared this good news.
But Paul doesn’t single out Epaphras as their sole minister. Rather he identifies all the people of the church as ministers; indeed he describes them as saints, because they had all attested to their faith. Paul further prayed their knowledge of Christ increase.
He prayed for their ministry to be fruitful and importantly he prayed they would be strengthened in faith. Col1:9-11
Those who rely on Christ’s redeeming love, appreciate Gods Holy Spirit of Grace reveals the Fathers love for each and everyone on earth.
Yet even after years as a Christian there is always something new to learn and share re Christ’s abiding Love.
There are four congregations within our parish and each has its own area of ministry.
Let me encourage you to be in prayer for the Bodalla Church. Thanking God for their faith love and hope! Pray their ministry is fruitful & their faith as Christians is strengthened.
Equally it is fitting to pray thanksgiving & encouragement for our Bermagui, Cobargo & Narooma congregations as well; as each gathering of faithful people is important to God and to us as a Parish.
May God strengthen you all!