- Who we are
- What we do
News of the missile attack on Malaysian Airlines MH17 over Ukraine has brought shockwaves of grief and sadness.
We are saddened when natural disasters cause human loss, but we are outraged when death comes from deliberate human actions.
Yet regardless of the circumstances, God leads us when we grieve. He loves us and brings us comfort in our time of sadness.
We see a beautiful picture of this in the way that God brought relief to Hannah in her great anguish and grief (1 Samuel 1:16-17).
And we see how God brings relief to his people by providing the true leader who brings us certainty for eternity, even as we feel the fresh reminder of the frailty of human life.
As I reminded my High School Scripture class today, we cannot plan for the day we will pass away.
But if we trust in the Lord Jesus Christ then the day of our last breath will be the day we meet Jesus in paradise.
This is the real hope that comes from knowing and trusting the real Jesus.
This Sunday morning we launch ‘Kids’ Church’, our new children’s program at 9am.
We have made this step to help serve the children and families of current and future members.
This new program aims to help the children learn and grow in a way that suits their age and stage.
It also helps the parents and carers focus on church without needing to attend to their kids.
The kids will sit with their parents at the start of church and join them for songs and other items.
Then after around 15 minutes, the Kids’ Church leaders will escort the kids to the hall across the road.
We’re praying this new program will help us grow and reach young families throughout our region.
We’re also praying it will help the kids grow in the knowledge and love of the Lord Jesus.
The conviction this week of Rolf Harris for multiple cases of sexual assault is tragic for many reasons.
Above all, it is a tragedy for the girls he indecently assaulted.
We should pray for them and for all victims of sexual abuse, as they seek to recover and rebuild their shattered lives.
Yet the sins of Rolf Harris impact all of us as we feel the ripples of his abuse of trust.
As an Officer of the Order of Australia, and a much-loved Aussie icon, we expected him to act lawfully and respectfully towards women and children.
Yet in the midst of this abuse we must be reminded again of the real impact of the real hope in the real Jesus.
There is hope for victims, knowing that God will deal justly with those who have harmed them and their loved ones.
And there is hope in knowing that God promises eternal life without sadness and suffering for all who trust in the real Jesus.
Let us pray for healing and hope for those who are hurting.
Come Lord Jesus, come.
At the end of last week’s Bible talk, I read a famous poem by Charles Studd, a British missionary and international cricketer. According to Wikipedia:
“As a cricketer he played for England in the 1882 match won by Australia which was the origins of The Ashes. As a British Protestant Christian missionary to China he was part of the Cambridge Seven, and later was responsible for setting up the Heart of Africa Mission which became the Worldwide Evangelisation Crusade (now WEC International).”
He was a man with a great passion for seeing the world evangelised for Jesus, and did this at his own personal cost.
As requested by a number of people on Sunday, here is a link to the poem for which he is so famous: http://hockleys.org/2009/05/quote-only-one-life-twill-soon-be-past-poem/
Here is the final verse of this great poem:
Only one life, yes only one,
Now let me say,”Thy will be done”;
And when at last I’ll hear the call,
I know I’ll say “twas worth it all”;
Only one life,’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last. ”
It’s been a big week for sport, with success at the State of Origin, and a great performance at the FIFA World Cup.
We Aussies love our sport, and for many people, it’s the closest thing to organised ‘religion’.
Some joke that their favourite sport is the one that will be played in Heaven.
The Bible doesn’t tell us about whether or not there will be sport in heaven, let alone which game will be played.
But if sport is played then the umpire’s decisions will be fair, players won’t get injured, and no-one will ever grow weary.
But what is certain is this: Jesus will be the man of the match, as we celebrate his achievement of the greatest victory of all.
Jesus is victorious over sin and death, and all of us who trust in him will join in the spoils of his achievement for us.
“Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? […] But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Corinthians 15:55, 57)