GETTING BACK TO YOUR FUTURE

(September 9, 2018) Ed Delph shares another timely thought-provoker…

One of the most famous stories in the Bible is Luke 15. Although generally known as ‘the prodigal son chapter’ it is about putting three lost things back into circulation. It’s about…

  • A restoration of dignity and purpose.
  • Lost people getting back to the main road again after lengthy delays and detours.
  • How God’s compassion never gives up.
  • Seeing the essence of a person, not just the behaviour of a person.
  • Having the love to accept people for who they are but not letting them under achieve perpetually.

Lost… and without a good future
The chapter starts with Jesus talking to a crowd of people about a lost sheep, a lost coin and a lost son…  being lost they had no future. (more…)

THE GIFT OF FRIENDSHIP

(September 7, 2018) Carol Round shares on a precious gift…

‘Sweet friendships refresh the soul and awaken our hearts with joy, for good friends are like the anointing oil that yields the fragrant incense of God’s presence’ (Proverbs 27:9 TPT).

‘What are we celebrating today, ladies?’

When our waitress asked this question, I immediately said, ‘Our friendship.’

‘That’s a good thing to celebrate,’ she replied.

Friendships are forged
For over 12 years, I’ve been friends with a woman whom I call my soul sister. We are not related by human blood, but by the blood of Jesus Christ. (more…)

EVERYONE LOVES – NEEDS – A KIND WORD

(September 7, 2018) Robert and Maureen McQuillan encourage  blessing others…

Proverbs 16:24NLT makes a great statement: ‘Kind words are like honey – sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.’ ‘Kind words’ – noam emer in the Hebrew speak of suitable, delightful speech. A reality of life is that everyone needs to hear a suitable delight-bringing kind word at some point! Such contacts are blessings, precious connections.

Connecting
In respect to making contacts, in our May and June articles (The Inverted T Principle and Waiting at the Railway Station Called the Church) we emphasised the need to reach out – to connect – with people both inside and outside the church, that…

  • All Christians can do something to assist their pastor build their church!
  • The baptism of the Spirit is just not to enable us freely worship God in an unknown language, but supernatural enablement for kingdom service!
  • The principle of what Jesus said about his followers would be able to do if we ever came up against magistrates because of our faith can be applied to sharing the gospel: ‘Don’t worry about what you’ll say. When the time comes, say what’s on your heart – the Holy Spirit will make his witness in and through you’ (Mark13:11Mge).

(more…)

THE KING IS COMING, BUT…

(August 29, 2018) Dr Jim McClure, straight shooting theologian, shares…

‘Whenever I ask anyone about Jesus’ second coming, I seem to be given an answer that differs from other answers I’ve received from others.’

So wrote a concerned reader, adding, ‘Can you please give me an easy answer to my question: What can we know for sure about the return of Jesus?’

Easy answers can be suspect!
I wish I could give an easy answer to your question… but, like many things theological, an easy answer is often suspect!

The problem is that in the Bible God reveals to us many things that are not easy to grasp but he nevertheless wants us to be aware of them.  To help us he uses what theologians call ‘language of accommodation‘ – that is – terminology with which we are familiar to give us some insight into things that are unfamiliar.

The matter raised by this perturbed reader is in the area of eschatology, or concerning the doctrine of ‘last things.’ With reference to the return of Jesus Christ…

  • We know generally what is going to happen but –
  • We do not know precisely how it is going to happen.

(more…)

LET’S COME ALIVE WITH INFECTIOUS ENTHUSIASM ABOUT GOD’S LOVE!

(August 26, 2018) Jeff Benson brings a challenge…

There’s a lot to love about being part of one’s church community!

One of the things that I enjoy the most is engaging with people who have only recently come to faith in Jesus. One example is a particular young lady who gave her life to Jesus about 14 weeks ago… it’s been really exciting to see her come alive through experiencing God at work in her life.

Discovering God’s love is infectious!
As she’s come to understand God’s love for her and has been sensing his voice and guidance, she’s come alive with an enthusiasm that’s actually quite infectious. Here’s a snippet of something she posted on Facebook recently (She’s allowed me to use it):

‘Through the blood of Jesus Christ we have been saved, we’re free of sin and justified by faith! So many blessings have been just poured over me since I came to faith and it’s so overwhelming at times but I am so thankful because of how much my life has changed! God shined so much light into my life and knowing that I have a God who loves me so much, who is always there and has the best plans for my life is just so amazing.’

Note how much this new Christian used the word ‘so’: So many blessings, so overwhelming, so thankful, so much light, loves me so much, so amazing! (more…)

I’M IN THE LORD’S ARMY

(August 12, 2018) Brian Bell reflects on an ‘old’ but relevant truth

You may be familiar with the words of this ‘old’ children’s song…
‘I may never march with the infantry; ride with the cavalry; shoot with artillery;
I may never zoom o’er the enemy but I’m in the Lord’s army – YES SIR!

In recent times to help it ‘relate better’ to a more contemporary generation a verse has been added which speaks about Superman, Spiderman and Indiana Jones!

A vital fact
On the surface, the lyrics may seem to have little ‘spiritual’ content – I certainly was of that view… for a time, that is.

On reflection, however, while the song may not mention the Bible or characters within its pages (such as Joshua) that we would associate with the Lord’s army, as believers we are in the Lord’s army and this is a vital ‘spiritual’ fact.

This was emphasised to me recently when looking at Deuteronomy 20, a chapter dealing with instructions Moses gave to the Israelites about going into battle. (more…)

INVESTING IN ETERNITY

(August 11, 2018) George Forbes, missionary spokesperson, challenges…

In Luke 19: 11-27 Jesus shared a powerful principle shortly before his crucifixion.

He told his listeners the parable of the ‘Ten Pounds’ and spoke of a prince who gave each of his servants the same amount of money with the instruction to ‘invest’ on his behalf. And that he made it clear he expected a return from each of them.

Then Jesus told his servants that the people of the prince’s country hated him and had sent messengers to say they did not want him to be their king.

After the prince’s  appointment as king he returned to where he had left his servants to invest on his behalf. He called for them to appear before him to see what the investment had returned and asked each one, ‘How much have you earned with the money I gave you to invest?’

Investment expectation

(more…)

CHOICES

(August 7, 2018) Robert and Maureen McQuillan ask a question that leads to a serious challenge…

It’s a simple question really: What does the word ‘choice’ mean, either in a dictionary or in the Bible? Well, it’s an act of choosing between two or more possibilities.

The reality of life is that every day we make choices. We have to! Begins each new morning… arising from slumber, deciding what to wear, what to have for brekkie. And that’s before we hit the street!

One thing is for certain… every day decisions have to be made in respect of our job, marriage, family, holidays, movie to see, TV program to watch, the home, purchases, clothing, meals… then along comes new car or home. The list goes on!

In reality very day we’ll all be making choices, hopefully good ones!

Let’s share a choice that I (Robert) made recently that proved a bad one… although there was a funny side to it! (more…)

‘AND THINGS THAT GO BUMP IN THE NIGHT …’?

(July 24, 2018) Dr Jim McClure, straight shooting theologian, brings another wake-up call…

Recently I watched Britain’s Got Talent.  The act that won was of a ‘comedian’ whose whole routine was about his homosexuality. The judges thought it was hilarious! The audience stood and applauded! And the voting public declared him the winner! (In another performance a man demonstrated his ‘skill’ by removing his clothes in a provocative way.) The show was concluded by a female guest singer who sang about wanting to kiss girls.

Another popular singer, Ariana Grande, has a new sexually explicit song on the market called God is a Woman. Some of the lyrics are a mockery of Christianity, such as, ‘Baby, lay me down and let’s pray’, ‘So, baby, take my hand, save your soul’ and ‘And boy, if you confess, you might get blessed.’ In her music video of the song Ezekiel 25:17 is misquoted. And Grande is portrayed in a flesh-coloured body suit with multiple breasts at which men suckle.

Disrespect for spiritual beliefs and standards
Sadly in recent years we have seen a disintegration of social principles and disrespect for spiritual beliefs and standards that have established a sound foundation for many nations for hundreds of years (more…)

‘AS IS’ – FLAWS AND ALL

(July 18, 2018) Carol Round shares a comforting truth …

Have you ever purchased a product labelled ‘As is’?

We trust the lowered price of the item we’ve bought will be worth whatever hidden flaws might emerge later on.

One secret to overlooking flaws
On her 50th wedding anniversary, a woman revealed the secret of her long and happy marriage. She said, ‘On my wedding day, I decided to make a list of 10 of my husband’s faults which, for the sake of the marriage, I would overlook.’

One of her guests asked her what some of the faults she chose to overlook were.

‘To tell you the truth,’ she replied, ‘I never did get around to making that list. But whenever my husband did something that made me hopping mad, I would say to myself, “Lucky for him that’s one of the 10!”’

Paul’s advice was good: ‘Christ accepted you, so you should accept each other. This will bring honour to God’ (Romans 15:7ERV). (more…)