2106, 2019

Proverbs for Your Pennies

By |June 21st, 2019|

Proverbs for Your Pennies The Bible has a lot to say about money and a variety of other issues related to it. Some people estimate there are, in fact, more than 2,000 verses about money and related topics in the Bible. This Sunday we are exploring Jesus’ challenging words in Matthew 6 v.19-24. Now, you might assume this wealth of material is a good thing. And you’d be right; we need all the help we can get to properly understand and manage our finances in a way that honours God. But there is also a dark side to this deluge of data. Because the Bible says so much about money the temptation is to develop an imbalanced theology of money; to focus on one particular aspect of its teaching to the neglect of

1406, 2019

The Armour of God

By |June 14th, 2019|

The Armour of God As a young child I recall many colouring-in-sheets and activities during church that were related to the armour of God, described in Ephesians 6. I recall these activities so vividly because the language used by the Apostle Paul in that passage to describe the armour is reminiscent of what a Roman soldier would wear, and I loved Roman history (I was a bit nerdy). More recently, I’ve found myself back in Ephesians 6, but this time for different reasons. It is a great reminder of the spiritual defenses we are equipped with as Christians to take our “stand against the devil’s schemes” (v.11). I won’t copy it all out here, but I encourage you to read Ephesian 6:10-17 sometime soon. The imagery used is a

706, 2019

Created for Community

By |June 7th, 2019|

Created for Community In the well-known movie, Castaway, FedEx employee Chuck Noland is marooned on an uninhabited island after his plane crashes in the South Pacific Ocean. In the film, a volleyball named Wilson becomes Chuck’s imaginary friend and companion during the four years he spends marooned on the island. If you have seen the movie, you can recall the devastating moment when Wilson floats away from Chuck into the vast ocean. I can still vividly recall Chuck’s pained cry: “WILLLSOOOOOON!”. Although Castaway is fiction, this particular story line points to the reality of our need for companionship. God has created us to do life with others. Paul Tripp puts it like this, “We weren’t created to be independent, autonomous, or self-sufficient. We were made to live in a

3105, 2019

An Attractive Lifestyle

By |May 31st, 2019|

An Attractive Lifestyle Let each of us please his neighbour for his good, to build him up. For Christ did not please himself… (Romans 15:2-3) God’s call for us in these verses is very counter-cultural. Think about it. Advertisers are always telling us to please ourselves, to treat ourselves to something nice and enjoyable. Why? Well, in the famous words of L’Oréal Paris, ‘Because you’re worth it’! The basic message is, ‘You’re most important. You deserve to maximise your enjoyment. Make sure to take care of number one – YOU!'. Yet Jesus, the only person we could ever say is actually worth it all, rejected the L’Oréal philosophy. He embraced an other-centred life, a life of self-sacrificial love that went even to the point of death for the sake

2405, 2019

Looking Back and Looking Forward

By |May 24th, 2019|

Looking Back and Looking Forward This Sunday after our 9am service we will hold our Annual General Meeting (AGM) for 2019. If you’re a member, let me encourage you to make sure you attend. It will be a wonderful opportunity to review the past twelve months, to cast our eye forward, and to give thanks to God for his goodness to us. In fact, as I’ve done that very thing this week—looked back and looked forward—I have been so encouraged and excited. As I look back over the last 12 months, it’s obvious we have much to be thankful for, including: The smoothness of the leadership A dedicated staff team, a devoted team of deacons, and a unified Church Council The successful launch of ‘The Park’, including the fundraising

1905, 2019

How Should You Respond?

By |May 19th, 2019|

How Should You Respond? On Friday, the day before the federal election, I asked the question: How should you vote? Today, the day after the election, I’d like to ask: How should you respond? What should you do now? You may be upset that your preferred party fell short (or looks like it will) or elated that yours will be in power for the next three years. Whatever your reaction to the result of the election, I believe, as a Christian, the right and required response is the same: to pray (1 Tim. 2:1-4). Andrew Moody is an adjunct lecturer at various Bible colleges around Australia, and he offers the following list to guide our prayers in the wake of the election[1]: Thank God for our stable and lawful

1705, 2019

How Should You Vote?

By |May 17th, 2019|

How Should You Vote? Who should you vote for in the federal election this Saturday? If your experience has been anything like mine, suggested answers to this question have filled your letterbox, social media feed, and television screen for the last few weeks. People have towed trailers, sat by the side of the road, and set up signs to tell you how to answer this question. And campaign volunteers will seek to answer it for you as you run the gauntlet of pamphlets and outreached hands to make it to the polling booth tomorrow. And for good reason, it is an incredibly important question. Good government matters. It matters to God (Rom. 13:1-7), and it should matter to us. But let me be clear right up front, I have

1005, 2019

Wrestling with Mother’s Guilt

By |May 10th, 2019|

Wrestling with Mother’s Guilt This weekend we celebrate Mother’s Day. It’s a day when women experience a plethora of feelings and emotions. Many Mum’s are looking forward to spending time with their children. Some Mum’s are experiencing grief over the loss of their own mothers or children, or perhaps heartbreak from wayward children. Some Mum’s are feeling forgotten by children who are busy with their own lives, or have moved away. Some Mum’s are feeling exhausted and didn’t even realise Mother’s Day was approaching! Then there are women, we might call them spiritual mothers, who have never had the opportunity to have their own children who feel a certain sting on this day. Talking with Mum’s from all walks of life, I know one thing to be true for