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is to worship God, and to glorify Him, through caring, equipping and mobilising people for mission.

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Living God's Story Together

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St.Marys SA 5042

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    Christmas is almost here!

    Wednesday, December 14, 2011


    Christmas is almost here, the snowflakes and reindeer are almost at the door and Santa has been slimming so he can fit down the chimney. The shops have ramped up their Christmas advertising, sales are in full swing and the carol services are well underway. Once the food for Christmas is finally organised the holidays are the next big thing on the horizon. Thus another Christmas and another year expires.

    Rather than just allowing another year and another event to expire I wondered about the opportunity to inspire you to be thinking about Christmas and it’s most important focus - the birth of Jesus Christ into this world. The older I get and the more I see the world’s gradual decline and disintegration the more I wonder what God was thinking in sending Jesus Christ to this earth. Why didn’t he just let us expire as a human race into the abyss of nothingness? Why bother with a human race that is so bent on rebellion against His authority and loving rule over our lives?

    If you knew what God knew, about us and our propensity to sin, what would you have done if you were God? I think I would have penned the final words of the last chapter, written ‘The End’ and then closed the Book. Remarkably God chose instead to keep the story of humanity going by writing another chapter and the chapter he wrote is by far the best in the Book. Most of the Book is written about us and that means a record of our failures and accompanying misery but this new chapter is written about Him and His Son Jesus.

    What an unexpected twist to the story when angels appear, there are sheep and shepherds, wise men and an animals’ feeding trough – not to mention a weary pregnant woman and her faithful husband. This story is better than anything the creative genius Max Lucado could have thought of or written, J.R.R Tolkien couldn’t even come close with his stupendous writing gift nor could C.S Lewis, with all his brilliance, have conceived a storyline like this.

    This is the story of a being so loving, so gracious, so eternally interested in His creation that He is prepared to sacrifice His Son and Himself as the Creator. The Creator lays down His life for His creation! No human being could ever have conceived such a plan, for this kind of sacrificial love is beyond our conception. Some might think that’s not quite true, surely some would lay down their lives for a loved one? True but Jesus gave His life for us while we were still sinners. That means we were His enemies, walking in opposition to His will, rebelling against His holiness and giving full flight to our sin nature.

    Christmas is the opening story in the chapter that defines God’s finest hour. It begins with a baby and leads to a cruel cross that silences heaven and earth, and then to an empty tomb, the dramatic finale that opens the possibility of heaven for all. A new chapter and a new story begins. What inspiration! What encouragement, hope and love is induced from the chapter that begins with Christmas. Fat Santa’s and overflowing trolleys don’t even come close to this yet unfinished story….






    The Power of the Tongue

    Wednesday, December 07, 2011


    I watched a documentary last week on the atomic bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki during World War II. The shear power of their destruction was truly astounding as the bombs flattened everything for many kilometres around. The physical destruction however pales into insignificance in light of the human destruction. It is estimated that at least 100,000 people were killed in Hiroshima and another 70,000 in Nagasaki, no one knows for sure. Half of the number killed died the first day of the bombings, the other half died a slow and painful death from flash burns or radiation sickness over the weeks and months that followed.

    As I reflected on the destruction and the facts and figures about the complete devastation brought about by this horrific event I was reminded of the Bible’s description of the potentially devastating power of the tongue. In the book of James we are reminded that the tongue has the capacity for great good in bringing praise to God but also great destruction in the damage it can bring.

    “Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.” (James 3:5b-6)

    The Bible warns us of the tongue’s potentially destructive power that can ignite and burn down a whole forest, and like an atomic bomb it can indiscriminately destroy everything in its path. I was challenged further this week in thinking about these things while reading a chapter of a book on the tongue with my accountability partners, which said:

    “The tongue has that scope of inflammatory power in human relationships, and James is saying that those who misuse the tongue are guilty of spiritual arson. A mere spark from an ill-spoken word can produce a firestorm that annihilates everyone it touches. Furthermore, because the tongue is a “world of evil,” it contains and conveys all the world system’s wickedness. It is party to every evil there is and actively intrudes its evil into our lives.”  (R. Kent Hughes, Disciplines Of A Godly Man)

    Thankfully, while reflecting on the potential of our words, I was reminded of God’s Words, communicated in various ways, that have brought such unimaginable blessing to this world,

    …“Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people. Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11)

    “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favour rests” (Luke 2:14)

    …“Look, the lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29)

    …“It is finished.”… (John 19:30)


    God’s peace to you in this Christmas season,

    Pastor Brian.







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