Encouragement

57TH ANNY… GOING FOR 67 AND BEYOND!

(July 7, 2018) Robert and Maureen McQuillan share  some personal matters…

Noticed that our granddaughter, Bonnie-Jane Phillips, whom we married to Matthew Hoseini, a great young man three weeks ago, had happily Facebooked the following: ‘21 days ago I married my best friend! Cannot believe how quickly the time has gone by already.’

We’d Facebooked back: ‘Cute, cute. Only 21 days? Just wait until it’s 20805 days plus a few extra leap years’ days – that’s about 21000 days – as it’ll be for us come July 7! Then you can really rave!’

 

Blissfulness: A happy Matthew and Bonnie-Jane, only 21 days married

That, and some other happenings, led to sharing the following…

Asked last Monday what we were doing this weekend, we quietly said that on Saturday (today) we’d be happily celebrating our 57th wedding anniversary, some 21000 days if we count from the moment we first met (engaged within two weeks of blissfully falling in love!) but couldn’t get married being underage and unable to immediately win parental permission. Our friend’s eyes popped open wide and she remarked she couldn’t believe it! (more…)

WAITING AT THE RAILWAY STATION CALLED THE CHURCH?

(June 18, 2018) Robert and Maureen McQuillan share a reflection…

Recently I (Robert) was waiting in the church prayer room for someone I’m counselling to arrive.

As usual midweek I was casually attired, wearing my leather jacket, chinos and, not my Fedora, but my Greek fisherman’s cap. As time was going on I decided to stand  relaxedly looking through the room’s large down-to-the-ground windows onto the pleasant garden outside.

A young pastor happened by: Stopping, he commented, ‘For some strange reason, Robert, I had the impression you were casually waiting for a train!’

No, I wasn’t: I was just waiting for someone who wasn’t showing up… and waiting, expecting…

Christians waiting around for that good old gospel train?
Suddenly I had reminiscences of old glory ‘gospel train to heaven’ songs – and lines such as those from David Meece’s Gospel Train that declare ‘All aboard for the gospel train, my seat’s reserved, and my ticket’s paid.’

Then a picture came to me – one of many Christians from different churches waiting at that station called The Church, all confident that they were all right and would definitely be on board when the ‘gospel train to heaven’ eventually came along.

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‘GRANDMA, GOD MUST BE POOPED!’

(June 13, 2018) Maureen McQuillan brings an encouraging word…

What a wonderful day last Saturday was!

It was the wedding of our precious granddaughter Bonnie-Jane Phillips to Matthew Hoseini in The Farm Yarra Valley boutique venue in Victoria’s beautiful Warrandyte area and Robert had the privilege of marrying the couple.

Matthew is a handsome young man, very special indeed – and Bonnie looked the perfect happy, beautiful bride!

 

Romantic dinner with my husband!’ (Bonnie’s posting later on Facebook)


Happy memories

Some days before I was joyfully recalling many delightful happy memories we have of Bonnie – we’ve always had an incredibly close relationship with her; throughout her childhood she would often spend a lot of time with us and even this year – her 29th – she confessed that she still loves to come visiting us.

I reflected on how even when very young she would always be quietly observing things. Even while enjoying a Maccas she wouldn’t rush eating the food like so many other kids but would sit with us slowly and properly digesting her chosen burger and quietly observe people both adults and children around her. (more…)

ITP – RELATIONAL, NOT RELIGIOUS, CHRISTIANITY

(May 9, 2018) Robert and Maureen McQuillan bring a reminder…

It’s May, our fifth month already!

Interestingly, before the Jewish Exile to Babylon in 586 BC, this time of the year roughly corresponded to the month the Israelites called Ziv – meaning ‘brightness’ or ‘radiance.’ Determined Christians could make this a great month to radiate the reality of our relationship with Jesus!

Of course we’re meant to splendidly radiate Jesus every month, not just May – in both our churches and our locales; exhibiting biblical truths and principles. After all, Jesus, who was light in a dark world (John 1:4-5), declared that his followers are meant to be the radiance of God’s glory – ‘You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colours in the world. God is not a secret to be kept’ (Message 5:14Mge).

What we explain below about relational Christianity is really a very simple biblical truth and principle – and the joyful response by troubled Christians we shared it with recently was one of ‘Ah ha! That’s what it’s all about! We get it.’

ITP
We call real relational Christianity ITP – the Inverted T Principle – and it’s all about being relational not religious!

What’s the inverted ‘T’ principle? you ask. Well… image a large upper case letter T, then invert it – now image the upright as a centre piece that is connecting with two bottom bars that extend widely both right and left.

Now what you have is a big … (more…)

THE TITANIC TWELVE… 12 ‘IF ONLYS’ OF LIFE

(April 14, 2018) Robert and Maureen McQuillan share…

Titanic’ means of exceptional explosive strength, size or power. Such are the titanic ‘if onlys’ of life that can sink us! Today, April14, we recall another titanic… the RMS Titanic.

106 years ago – April 14 1912 – at approximately 11.39pm, on its maiden voyage the Titanic struck an iceberg. Three hours, one minute later, at 2.40am Monday morning the so-called unsinkable, luxury liner was gone in the calmest but coldest seas (28degrees under).

1523 souls perished, including John Harper, a brave young Baptist minister, who kept encouraging people to trust God and to accept the Lord Jesus… even as he too sank into the deep.

Only 750 were plucked from the frigid sea. It was a very sad time indeed, as the Walter Lord’s prolific 1955 book called it, A Night to Remember (Made a  movie in 1958).

 

 

 

 

 

 

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DRAGONS BEWARE!

(March 17, 2018) Robert and Maureen McQuillan challenge fearful Christians…

Hic sunt draconesHere be dragons!

Some people think that ancient globes depicted dragons as warnings of the unknown ahead in unexplored territories. Not so!  Well… one did – the tiny copper European 1510AD Hunt-Lenox globe.

Paper maps were different. It was the medieval practice to depict sea monsters, beasties and other fearsome mythological creatures beside uncharted areas: cartographers of ancient maps adapted this to indicate possible dangers ahead.

Hic sunt draconesHere be dragons! was the warning to brave explorers, adventurers and land pioneers who, like our modern Star Trek heroes, dared ‘to boldly go where no one has gone before.

Scripture’s ‘dragons’
Ancient dragons were mere mythical fantasy!

But as the church determinedly moves forward in 2018 – ‘boldly going where no one has gone before’ (or should have gone by now!) – Christians will do well to remember the general warning of dangers ahead in that ancient line, Here be dragons! (more…)

7 CONCERNS AND CHALLENGES

(February 28, 2018) Robert and Maureen McQuillan write…

Like this Gypsy Smith quote below? It’s from the cover of Stuart Reynold’s latest book, Getting Ready for Revival.

A challenge for every Christian, not to think ’Maybe I’ll do something later’ but to act on now!

Reawakening needed!
One of Oxford Dictionary meanings of ‘Revival’ is: ‘A reawakening of religious fervour, especially by means of evangelistic meetings.

It’s been many years since the days of genuine ‘religious fervour’ in churches with regular testimonies of sinners saved, lives changed, growth in one’s faith, sick people healed at every meeting.

Something has been missing for some time; church life has definitely changed! We’ve become too sophisticated, too locked into restricting ‘in-house’ systems, and the absence of the unchurched.

That golden oldie, Give Me That Old Time Religion, declaring salvation being good enough for everybody; loving one another; taking us to heaven;  and ‘it’s good enough for me’ had something going for it!

In respect of something being missing in many churches (not all of course, praise God!); perhaps the following is on your mind too … (more…)

MOVING AHEAD… AND THE WOMAN WHO STOLE FROM JESUS

(January 20, 2018) Robert and Maureen McQuillan share a 2018 encouragement…

Well we’re right into 2018! It’s so obvious from the way that so many people – including church leaders – are acting and talking about moving forward this year, that 2017 with its disappointments as well as highs has been forgotten about. There’s an enthusiasm about this new year, a decidedly good spirit in many people, a fresh happiness, and a feeling that we are moving ahead this year with a determination that good things are going to happen.

Incidentally… we’re picking this up among unsaved people, not just Christians! But we Christians particularly should be even more determined to move forward in 2018… after all we have the Holy Spirit of God – the all-powerful CEO of the church of Jesus Christ within to assist us!

Safe in Jesus in a dark world
Admittedly the world is still a dangerous place… the media’s bad news continues to tell of troubles in our own nation as well as in other countries. Increased crime, unstable governments, crazy governmental decisions, rumours of war, horrific mudslides, sicknesses… the list goes on.

Of course good news comes through too we admit… but we long to hear the real good news, the gospel of Christ, being heralded in the media! We’re seeing thousands attend the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne and encouraging their stars… how wonderful it would be to see thousands longing to attend churches and acknowledge Jesus Christ!

It’s good to discover Christians who are determined to honour Jesus in 2018, are seeking God’s will for their life and desire to move forward no matter what goes down or comes against them or their churches. (more…)

WHY WORRY? IT’S CHRISTMAS

(December 14, 2017) Maureen McQuillan brings an encouraging Christmas linked thought…

Worrying doesn’t solve our problems or lift our burdens! In fact it causes us to ‘stew’ over matters and they hang around causing additional headaches and trouble minds and hearts!

Thought: It’s almost Christmas… think of young Joseph and the burdens that he could have been carrying some 2000 years ago and worrying over…

  • Newly married… to a young girl with whom he’s never been sexually intimate and discovers she’s pregnant!
  • Then has a strange notification by an angel that the baby was conceived by the very Spirit of God!
  • Has to take the pregnant Mary with him to Bethlehem to register for a census!
  • This approximately 160km trip would have taken them 8-10 long days of walking.
  • Probably a scary, uncomfortable journey for the young pregnant Mary, but what about Joseph?
  • Then at Bethlehem, he’s unable to find lodgings as the time of her delivery of this babe draws so close!

Joseph’s attitude
I like Joseph’s attitude to his uncertainties when he first contemplated what lay ahead if he honoured marriage with his beloved… like his forefather, David, he too was obviously a man after God’s own heart. (more…)

DECEPTION – A DIFFERENT VIEW ON ‘THE CHRISTMAS STORY’

(December 8, 2017) Robert and Maureen McQuillan share …

Great! It’s almost Christmas! And what a joyous time it can be!

This Sunday several churches with present their Carols by Candlelight evening, believing for a grand turnout of joyous Christians to celebrate the birth of the Saviour of this fallen world – and to worship our gracious God from full hearts.

Of course many Christians are aware that ‘Christmas’ as such isn’t mentioned in scripture, that no one really knows the exact date, let alone month, when  Jesus was born – but that’s okay for those who really know what this season is truly  all about and celebrate from the heart, not the head!

We’re really celebrating God’s incredible love for every sinner in willingly giving us his Son, born incarnate of the virgin Mary and destined to become our redeemer by dying on Calvary’s cross as our substitute for sin’s penalty (John 3:16).

Traditionally Christmas is a 5F matter… food, family, fun, fellowship and freebie gifts. But the genuine Christian aspect is all about our celebrating that God so loved the world that he freely gave us the greatest gift of all – Jesus – and that forgiveness and full salvation is available on repentance of sin to everyone who accepts Jesus as Saviour.

What an amazing event that so-named ‘first Christmas’ was!
No wonder the angelic host heralding that first good news declaration proclaimed to the bewildered shepherds: ‘Don’t be afraid. I’m here to announce a great and joyful event that is meant for everybody, worldwide: A Saviour has just been born in David’s town… Glory to God… Peace to all men and women on earth who please him.(more…)