Jun 26, 2016
Truth or Snare
Posted by Phil Inglis
Series: MIND
When my kids were young, I told my them that if the wind changed while they pulled a face, then their faces would stay that way. I also told my kids that it was impossible to buy batteries to fit a certain very annoying, noisy toy! The important thing to note is that even though these were lies, the kids behaved as though they were truth. It's a principle that we need to be aware of, not just as children, but as adults. A lie believed as truth will affect your life as tho

ugh it's the truth. This is particularly important when it comes to the big questions of life and purpose. 

For instance how many of the little and seemingly insignificant decisions of our lives add up to larger life shifts because a little piece of us believes the lie, “If I'm not in control something bad will happen." What changes do you make to your life's goals and dreams because you partially believe that ‘If you could just get a new phone, house, car, boat etc.. you would be happy"?

One of the powerful aspects of my experience of faith is the shift in thinking I experience when I study and explore the teaching of Jesus. Jesus himself said “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” The more I immerse myself in the way of thinking Jesus taught, the more settled, content, happy and alive I feel. I feel free when I know the truth, deep in my soul, that Jesus, God in flesh, died to render my faults and failings null and void in the eyes of God.

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  • Jun 26, 2016Truth or Snare
    Jun 26, 2016
    Truth or Snare
    Posted by Phil Inglis
    Series: MIND
    When my kids were young, I told my them that if the wind changed while they pulled a face, then their faces would stay that way. I also told my kids that it was impossible to buy batteries to fit a certain very annoying, noisy toy! The important thing to note is that even though these were lies, the kids behaved as though they were truth. It's a principle that we need to be aware of, not just as children, but as adults. A lie believed as truth will affect your life as tho

    ugh it's the truth. This is particularly important when it comes to the big questions of life and purpose. 

    For instance how many of the little and seemingly insignificant decisions of our lives add up to larger life shifts because a little piece of us believes the lie, “If I'm not in control something bad will happen." What changes do you make to your life's goals and dreams because you partially believe that ‘If you could just get a new phone, house, car, boat etc.. you would be happy"?

    One of the powerful aspects of my experience of faith is the shift in thinking I experience when I study and explore the teaching of Jesus. Jesus himself said “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” The more I immerse myself in the way of thinking Jesus taught, the more settled, content, happy and alive I feel. I feel free when I know the truth, deep in my soul, that Jesus, God in flesh, died to render my faults and failings null and void in the eyes of God.

  • Jun 19, 2016Attitude of Gratitude
    Jun 19, 2016
    Attitude of Gratitude
    Posted by Sarah Walker
    Series: MIND

    While I’m not a fan of all things created or celebrated in the USA, I do wish we observed Thanksgiving in Australia. As if copious amounts of delicious food, a day off work and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade aren’t enough of a draw-card, I think there’s something of great value in setting aside a day to give thanks. 

    Initially a celebration for the year’s good harvest, Thanksgiving has become a public holiday in America where people spend time in community with friends and family, expressing their gratitude for all that’s been provided to them. In 1789, President George Washington issued a Thanksgiving Proclamation, assigning the 26th of November as “a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favours of Almighty God.” 

    Each day, I want to acknowledge God with a grateful heart. I want to find something in every circumstance that I can be thankful for, but the reality is that far too often I catch myself comparing what I have to what everyone else has. I’m sometimes so discontent with what I don’t have that I can’t even express my gratitude for what I do have. Unfortunately, when my mind is stuck in comparison, it’s nearly impossible to have a thankful heart. It takes conscious effort to filter my thoughts, to stop comparing and to experience contentment in my current season. It’s only when my thought life is in check, that gratitude flows from my heart. If my mindset is off, and I allow discontentment to set in, it’s hard to give thanks. That’s why I love the concept of Thanksgiving Day so much. It’s intentional time set aside to acknowledge that despite our circumstance, we each have a lot to be thankful for. I want to work on my thought life, to be intentional about the things I allow my mind to dwell on, so that each day I’m living with a grateful heart.

  • Jun 12, 2016Strongholds
    Jun 12, 2016
    Strongholds
    Posted by Rebecca Inglis
    Series: MIND
    I (Rebecca) have a load of fears. I have a fear of mice. I have a fear of heights. I have a fear of public speaking. I have a fear of the unknown. I’m not sure I’ve ever conquered any of these fears. I’ve certainly faced them, as perhaps stronger than the fears themselves is my desire to not miss out on anything in life, any adventure, any challenge, any opportunity to follow Jesus more fully surrendered. So, while I would certainly still jump on the nearest couch, tabl

    e or bed if i saw a mouse and scream until someone came running to fix it, other fears I have intentionally not allowed to take over my life. I have a fear of heights but I’ve been bungy jumping. I have a fear of public speaking, but this week I will again get up and share God’s word with 200 people. I have a fear of the unknown, but I still say yes to God by placing my future and the future of my family totally in his hands.

    I would love to tell you that I have my fear totally under control all the time, but the reality is I have to intentionally prevent it from imprisoning me, controlling me, becoming a stronghold in my life. I do still worry about my future. I’m concerned about the unknown and things not going as I would plan. Sometimes this surfaces in my life in characteristics which could cause me to be labelled a ‘control freak.’ While thoughts of fear enter my mind, I refuse to let them become the theme of my life. I try to deal with the thought as soon as it enters my mind. The bible instructs, “We take captive every thought and we make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5)

    I can be obedient to Jesus, and decide to feel the fear but obey him anyway. Alternatively, I can be obedient to my thoughts, my fears and allow them to become a stronghold in my life and keep me a prisoner from the abundant life that God promised. Join us this Sunday as we continue to allow God’s word to teach us to better love him with all our mind as we consider strongholds in our lives.

  • Jun 5, 2016Attitude Check
    Jun 5, 2016
    Attitude Check
    Posted by Phil Inglis
    Series: MIND
    I (Phil) can’t stand some of the platitudes that people put up on facebook, you know, the ones usually accompanied by pictures of flowers or something else. These sayings like, “Your life is unwreckable because Christ’s love is unstoppable,” and “when you’re wounded by words run to the only word that brings healing,” are so corny and cliche that they make me want to gag. Maybe it's a bloke thing, I don’t know. This week however, I saw the statement, “A Negative Mind Will

    Never Give You A Positive Life” and while it is corny and cliche, it does accurately reflect the biblical proverb “As a man thinks within himself, so he is.” (Proverbs 23:7) I was immediately challenged by the irony of feeling negative about a corny facebook post warning me about my thinking and my attitude!

    Negativity seems to be a serious problem for Australians because we are generally a pretty critical and negative bunch of people. Perhaps the most obvious form this negativity takes even has a name, the ‘tall-poppy’ syndrome, which describes the way in which we tend to cut down those who reach the highest in our society. Our leaders, politicians, community leaders, celebrities and successful business people are all scrutinised and criticised whenever they make even the smallest mistake. I wouldn’t say that all Australians are like that, but there does seem to be more of them than in other countries.

    Regardless of our culture and country of origin we all have the capacity and tendency for negativity. In this new series we will consider how we can better love God with all our mind, and develop thinking that is more positive and life giving, because how we think truly matters. Join us this Sunday at 9am for a coffee and 10am for worship as we celebrate the God who died for us, releasing us from the bondage of negativity.

  • May 22, 2016RUN
    May 22, 2016
    RUN
    Posted by Sarah Walker
    Series: RUN
    Confession: I hate running. I love playing sport, I love going to the gym, I even love going walking. I just really don’t like running. I roll my eyes at people that tell me running helps clear their head because all I can think about while I’m running is when I get to stop. Long distance running is hard, and I’m just not very good at it. Don’t get me wrong, there have been times when I’ve set out to work on improving my running. I’ll set my alarm, get up and go each morning

    but the reality is, after two or three days my legs are shot, my feet ache and I just don’t want to go again. I then usually decide I’ve worked hard enough to take a week (or two… at least) break from running, so I take it easy. Then, by the time I go again I’m back to where I started. Okay, so it’s really not that hard to see why I never get any better at it.

    In 1 Corinthians, Paul compares the Christian life to a race, and urges the Corinthians to run like winners. That just sounds exhausting to me, but I can understand Paul’s thinking. Life can be chaotic, it’s a long journey, and running that distance takes discipline and a clear focus. If we want to keep running until the end then we have to commit, we have to be consistent and we have to persevere. The way we run matters, and this week we’re going to look at what it takes to run in such a way as to get the prize.

    - RUN - Sarah Walker".
  • May 15, 2016You’re Invited
    May 15, 2016
    You’re Invited
    Posted by Rebecca Inglis
    Series: EATS
    The breakfast show on our local radio station has a segment called ‘bad siri’. People write in with their questions, and a robotic voice answers the questions in a really cold and heartless manner. It’s hilarious! Last Thursday someone wrote in saying that they had been invited to a wedding 4hrs drive down the coast. The listener didn’t want to spend the money to drive down there, especially considering she would have to buy a new outfit and gift and spend money on fuel

    and accomodation. The question posed to the computer was, what should she do? Bad Siri’s advice was:

    “The question is, do you see this person still being a part of your life in 5 years time, if no, then you have probably just been given an invite to boost numbers. If yes, then you should make the effort and go to the wedding. You will at least have a free meal and maybe your cold heartless heart will thaw out a little bit being surrounded by love. Don’t be so tight and so boring. You go!”

    This week we take a look at the story about a man holding a giant banquet. In this story, the original guests offer some pretty lame excuses at the very last minute as to why they won’t be there. New property, possessions and relationships result in their lack of attendance at the party. So the host of the party tells his servants to go out into the streets and compel the marginalised to come in. The host anticipates that some who have been ostracised and left alone and who fall into the 'never invited' camp will need to be convinced to come. It isn’t easy for the marginalised to come to the banquet. They are the never-invited, never-expected and never-hoped. The story shows us how God’s kingdom is like a giant table, laid out with so many good things and all are invited.

    This Sunday at 10 as we think over this story, we remind ourselves that EVERYONE is invited. The challenge is, will you sit at the table or will you be distracted and turn down the invitation? Will you help convince others to come and sit at the table too?

  • May 8, 2016You Can’t Say No
    May 8, 2016
    You Can’t Say No
    Posted by Phil Inglis
    Series: EATS
    My mother taught me manners. I know, its a cliche, but it seems to be a Mother’s role to instruct children in such things. If kids need instruction on how to fill water balloons, skate, or climb a tree, it tends to be a father’s thing but, instruction in civility often seems to be a mother’s task (not an easy one in my case). Fortunately for me, my wife picked up the training when we got marri

    ed and I’m almost ready for graduation.

    Over the last couple of weeks we’ve been talking about Jesus’ table manners, but we have not actually defined what ‘manners’ are. So I thought I would do some extra study and get advise from an expert. The most famous book on etiquette (according to google so it must be right) was published in 1922 by Emily Post. According to Emily Post, “Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter what fork you use.” Well that’s good to know, because I am always confused about what fork to use.

    At the meal table we look at this week, Jesus is invited to the house of a senior religious leader for dinner. The host arranged for a sick man to be at the dinner, right in front of Jesus, in order to try and trap Jesus into religious lawbreaking. Jesus masterfully reveals their lack of manners, their lack of awareness of the feelings of others, and leaves them speechless.

    Join us this week as we celebrate the mothers and women in our lives, and give thanks for the times they have displayed a 'sensitive awareness' of us and others.

  • May 1, 2016Wash Your Hands!
    May 1, 2016
    Wash Your Hands!
    Posted by Rebecca Inglis
    Series: EATS

    One of our parents is a little bit paranoid about washing hands before meals. Once, our children returned from a day at their house complaining that they had been made to wash their hands six times! In the meal we look at this week (Luke 11:37-52) Jesus deliberately avoids washing his hands and it may seem a little bit dangerous. We don’t want to go overboard, but we do want to teach our kids to wash their hands before mealtime so they don’t get sick.

    The Pharisees who Jes

    us shared a meal with didn't wash in order to get rid of germs. They washed as part of a tradition to cleanse their hands from spiritual defilement that might be taken into the body. In reality, the actual washing didn't involve soap or scrubbing, but rather dribbling some water over the hands. It was an act of spiritual cleansing, not physical cleansing.

    When Jesus is pulled up on his table manners, making the most of the opportunity, he challenges the religious leaders of the day, who were so concerned with outward purity that inward purity was neglected. “You Pharisees are so careful to clean the outside of the cup and the dish, but inside you are filthy—full of greed and wickedness!” (Luke 11:39)

    Jesus challenges us to search our own hearts about hypocrisy. Do I ever try to make myself look better than I actually am? Do I ever try to appear generous but actually have a heart of greed? Do I expect to be treated better than others because of my status or position? Do I hold other people to standards that I do not meet?

    Join us this Sunday at 10am as we increasingly allow Jesus example of relationship to be our benchmark and the culture we set for our lives, our families and our church.

  • Apr 24, 2016He Eats With Sinners
    Apr 24, 2016
    He Eats With Sinners
    Posted by Phil Inglis
    Series: EATS
    What is one of the most significant relational moments in the life of a human being? The day when two people declare their love for one another witnessed by friends and family. In our culture a wedding generally involves an hour long ceremony followed by a couple of hours hanging around, then a shared meal that lasts for hours and includes many courses, dancing, drinking, music, car decorating, gift giving, speeches and probably some mildly embarrassing stories. In other p

    laces around the world the celebration of a wedding lasts for a week or more but always ends with a giant shared meal.

    Meals are significant. A vast majority of the milestones of our lives are celebrated with a meal. In religion meals take on special meanings. For instance the Passover meal is a central feature of the Jewish faith and the symbolic meal shared by Jesus at the Last Supper is repeated in christian gatherings all around the world.

    In the gospel of Luke, 1 in 5 verses are about meals. Jesus is either going to a dinner, at a dinner, or leaving a dinner. In Luke 5:31 when Jesus is accused of eating and drinking with dodgy people he responds that it is his mission to do so, to save the sick, not the healthy. It’s perhaps no wonder that the Gospel of Luke has been called the Gospel of the Salvation Army.

    This week we take a look at this accusation levelled at Jesus in the first of our series called EATS. Around tables throughout his ministry, Jesus modelled an acceptance and tolerance that we must first accept for ourselves, and then extend to others. Join us this Sunday at 10am as we draw close to God and know more fully how much he accepts and loves us.

  • Apr 17, 2016The Blessings of Obedience
    Apr 17, 2016
    The Blessings of Obedience
    Posted by Phil Inglis
    This week we are camping. The campsite is beautiful and we are with great friends but have no electricity. Don’t stress too much, I have enough battery power for lights and charging a phone for emergencies (and Facebook) but there is no TV, no video and no computer games. It brings up some fun memories from my own childhood. Every afternoon when I got home from school I was NOT allowed to watch television. In fact, in the first few years of school my father used to take

    the TV and put it in the garage during term time! Now I am the parent torturing my children, restricting not just television on school days, but all forms of electronic entertainment.

    I had always believed, as a kid, that I was being punished for something. I was having my rights restricted because I wasn’t doing well enough at school, or wasn’t practicing my music hard enough. It hasn’t been until I became an adult and a parent, that I started to see what was really going on. My parents realised very quickly that television wasn’t just a distraction from school work, it was a barrier to community, to connection and to family life.

    This is not a rant against TV and electronic devices, although we need to make sure they don’t have a negative impact on family and community life. Rather it’s an illustration of what God was doing in Haggai’s time. God took things away from the Israelite people, not because they needed to be punished, but because he wanted them to focus on him. God knows the value of community and relationships, and relationship with Him above all. Without the distraction of wealth and excess, they rebuilt the relationship with God they had lost. They found courage, strength, assurance and power in that relationship that propelled them through centuries of hardship and difficulty until the coming of Jesus Christ.