Love Like Jesus – Combined Churches Worship Night

Worship team from multiple churches bringing an amazing experience of praise and worship

The Thursday before Easter saw the first combined churches worship night. Six different churches from various denominations joined together to celebrate the great love of Jesus. Often the Thursday night before Easter is called Maundy Thursday by mainline protestant churches (The word “Maundy” comes to us as an Anglo-French word derived from the Latin “mandatum,” which means “commandment.” It refers to when Jesus, in the Upper Room during the Last Supper, said to the disciples: “A new commandment I give you, that you love one another; even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” (John 13:34, Revised Standard Version)1). This reference to the new commandment of love which is at the heart of the Last Supper and the washing of the disciples’ feet as a demonstration of love was the focus for the Thursday night before Good Friday. Rather than following the ancient traditions of candles and darkness (Tenebrae), with the events of the last supper being told through readings and prayers, the Love like Jesus combined churches worship night shared the events and challenge to love like Jesus through worship, praise and reflections geared towards young adults.

It is amazing to see churches from different denominations working together. The spirit of God was moving powerfully during this time.

Love Like Jesus – Combined Worship Night
The worship team
The worship team

Keep an eye out for the next combined churches worship night, as it will be a time of amazing worship and praise that will leave you full of hope and joy, praising our amazing God.

Message Series for July – Together in Song :)

Singing is an important part of worship. In fact, we spend one third to over half our time singing when we are in church. More people remember the lyrics in songs than any point from a message/sermon. So in our new message series, we are going to explore some of the theology behind the songs we sing, both old and new.

Series starts July 1, 2018

Each week we will explore a different theology or theme within the songs we sing.

Week 1 – Singing the Creeds

Week 2 – Salvation Theology

Week 3 – Being at Mission

Week 4 – Our Personal Faith

Week 5 – Who We Are! – The Church

Stay tuned for a special announcement in the next week, regarding exciting news for NEW Beginnings!!!!

Establishing a Community of Believers

June is the last month of our 3-month preaching series called “Establishing a Community of Believers”. Each month we are focusing on a different aspect of this theme.

In April we focused upon how Jesus revealed himself following his resurrection to the Believers. Over the 4 weeks we focused upon 4 resurrection appearances:

Firstly to Mary

Then to the disciples on the Emmaus road

To Thomas in the locked room

Finally to Paul on the road to demascus.

In May we focused upon how Jesus establishes the Church. Looking at these 4 areas – Being Sent, Being Filled, Being Courageous & Being Loved.

During June our focus will be upon the community of the church, looking at a different aspect important to the Corinthian Church – Holiness, Freedom & Unity. In the Last week of June our focus will be upon “Our own Christian Community”

I would like to encourage you to be a part of these messages each week so that we may deeply understand what it means for us to be a Community of Believers.


Simon Lee

Lead Minister

We are creatures of Habit

All of us are creatures of Habit!

I pride myself on being willing to change and accepting of change. Having said that, I find myself realising that I am still a creature of habit. I realised this morning that there are certain activities that we do that make us feel comfortable and secure. These can be anything, something as simple as which car parking space we choose. I was arriving at the gym this morning and driving into the car park there was a car space that was free and closer to the entrance, but instead of taking it I turn the corner and looked to see if the car parking space that I have been using for the last couple of weeks was free.

Finding your personal vision

A man without a vision is a man without a future. A man without a future will always return to his past. (P.K. Bernard)

We are all busy people, with much happening in our lives. More often than not we go from day to day just trying to get through the day without much thought as to how you want your life to be in the future. At times all I have wanted to do at the end of a busy day is not think about anything, watch a bit of TV and go to bed so that I can do it all again. I feel that what is missing in my life and in many peoples lives is that have a lack of vision for the future of their life. You see, vision is important, it gives us the direction and the drive to push through the obstacles that stand in our way. Vision gives the temporary pain, the temporary hardship that we might be facing a purpose.

If you do not have a vision for your life, then what will happen is that you take the path of least resistance so that you can avoid as much discomfort in your life as possible. The level of sacrifice that a vision requires of you will determine what kind of person you are now and will become. One of the sacrifices that we make for our vision, is the use of our time. We live in a world of instant gratification, where things are done immediately, our modern technology has dulled us to the fact that giving our time and attention is an important sacrifice that we need to make for our own personal vision.

If we do not have a vision for our future then we will always go back to our past. Our vision bridges the present and the future. Our vision directs our attention and our decisions, and these choices, in turn, create our future that unfolds. As one of the proverbs says:

Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained but happy is he who keeps the law – Proverbs 29:18

If we don’t have our vision for the future then we really are unstrained and subject to the ebb and flow of the outside world. Our future becomes not what we make it but rather coincidental influences of the world and people around us. To use an illustration: if we have a vision for our future we are like a boat with an engine and navigation system, and we can head in any direction no matter the prevailing current. But, without a vision, we are like a small boat with only one oar. We can hold our position and at times move forward but if the current becomes too strong we are just swept along with it.

In our message last week, I explored “Your Personal Vision For The Future” and how it was important that our vision and God’s vision for our future are connected. Because God has plans to do something big in your life!


Practical steps to making certain that your vision for the future and God’s line up.

1. Spend time and focus your vision. Seek God’s leading in prayer. Enquire as to what God’s plan for your life is.

2. Integrate God’s vision for your life into your own vision. God has a plan for you and becoming a fully devoted disciple of Jesus Christ is to live out God’s plan for your life.

3. Share your Vision. Don’t just hold this vision to yourself, but share it with a few trusted people who can help you discern God’s call on your life. Also, these people will be able to celebrate your vision and encourage you in fulfilling your vision.

4. Work on your Vision. Don’t just create the vision but do something toward fulfilling your vision. This is the hard part, this is the part that requires sacrifice, energy, and passion. But this is the part that changes your life, especially, when your vision is truly connected with God’s plan for your life.

5. Renew Your Vision. Over time it is important to review and renew your vision. Don’t let your vision for the future become stale. Cycle back to step one and focus your vision. The thing is that you might have achieved what your initial vision was and it is time to seek a new one. Or, you have been hitting roadblocks with fulfilling your vision, and this might be God saying to make a change to the vision or it might be that God wants you to keep going but it is important to refocus your vision of time.

Compassion Insights Trip -Haiti Day 7

Today is another day of travel. We are travelling from Cap-Haitien in the northern part of Haiti to Port-a-Prince, the Capital of Haiti. It is the shortest of our plane trips, only half an hour. However, it will take us most of the day. We have to get to the airport in Cap-Haitien then organise our boarding passes and pass through security (with is only an x-ray and metal detector). Then a wait for an hour and a half.  Part way through our wait the power cuts out and the aircon stops working making the waiting room stuffy and hot. Life in Haiti!

After landing in Port-a-Prince we meet our local Compassion specialist and travel to our hotel we finally get to have lunch and organise ourselves for the next few days.

Our hotel in Port a Prince is in a very wealthy area. The community has a security guard at the entrance into the suburb.  And when we arrive at the hotel we are amazed at the quality of the hotel. We feel very privileged to be staying in such a good hotel in Port a Prince. Where we are staying is so different to the children we will be seeing in the next couple of days.

The picture below: Houses just across the valley from our hotel.

Compassion Insights Trip -Haiti Day 6

Today we travelled back into the city area of Cap-Haitien to visit a Compassion centre running a Child Survival Program. This is where mothers and babies are cared for to help the baby thrive and to help the mother gain skills.

It’s a great program as it teaches much-needed parenting skills and important hygiene skills. The program covers aspects such as the need for proper nutrition for the baby, breastfeeding, immunisation, family planning. Along with this, each centre teaches different life skills to the mothers to help them earn an income. Also, they teach literacy, often these mothers had never been to school.

We had a great time with the mothers, the staff and the babies. In Haitian culture, it is very acceptable to hand around your baby to others and we all got to hold many babies.

We also had the opportunity to visit the clinic where they do the baby checks. I was really impressed with how well the clinic was stock with medications that could be given to the babies in the program if they were sick. No need for these poor mothers to struggle to find enough money to purchase the needed medicines, they are given the medication as needed. This is amazing work Compassion and the local church are doing. Also, the clinic has food formula and other supplements if a baby is malnourished. Each of the children is charted to make certain that they are thriving.

After lunch, we then visited one of the mums and her family in her home. She lived a short walk through the narrow streets. Her home which she rented, had two rooms and an entrance way. She lived there with her 3 children, her mother, her sister and her child. The two rooms had enough room for a bed each and those that didn’t fit on the bed had to sleep in the entrance way on mats on the floor.  About 90-95% of the mum’s income was used to pay the rent on the house. Not leaving much for anything else.  The support the local church and Compassion gives means that when her son was sick recently he was able to go to the hospital. We need to remember that we live in a very privileged society, and the energy and effort that we put into things that are supposedly important just pale into insignificance compared to the daily life of the majority of the world.

Compassion Insights Trip -Haiti Day 5

Today is Sunday and church. We were told that church starts early to avoid the heat and we should leave the hotel at 7.30 am to be at church around 8 am and that it was going to be okay that we are arriving half way through the service. The church where we went starts about 6 am and will go for a few hours before the heat of the day kicks in.

The worship was amazing with hundreds of people singing. The preacher was passionate and gave a message about: ‘no matter your situation, whether you are poor or not, God is with you.’

One thing about going to church in Haiti is that it is hot, and people are crammed into together. People were sitting on the stairs and any place they could hear what was going on. (Makes you think that we have it so easy in our church)

After church, some of us went on a home visit nearby with one of the sponsor children of a person on the trip. They had to climb halfway up the hills surrounding Cap Haitien, a steep climb but an amazing visit.

After lunch, we had the opportunity to visit one of the historical sites near Cap-Haitien. The Sans-Souci Palace is a Palace in Haiti in the town of Milot, Nord, located approximately 5 kilometres northeast of the Citadelle Laferrière.

Compassion Insights Trip -Haiti Day 4

Today we spent the day at a rural church and compassion centre just outside of Cap-Haitien. After about an hour bus ride we arrived at the church/centre and were greeted by a brass hand playing Advance Australia Fair, a very impressive welcome. We were then ushered into the church and formally welcomed by the senior pastor, compassion coordinator, parents and children.

Then we visited the children in a couple of their classes. The classes are broken into different age groups. We spent some time in a class observing their lesson on spiritual development, where they were learning about the attributes of God.

The other lesson that we were able to observe was a life lesson for the 15-18 year age group. In this lesson, they learnt the importance of good hygiene and how to wash your hands properly. Very practical and important. Another lesson that part of our group was able to observe was about HIV, the causes, how it is spread and how to stay safe. All important information that the church is giving these kids.

We then had time to interact with the children and play some games. Bubbles were a hit, as was Chris and the soccer balls. By the end of the time with the kids, Chris was soaked in sweat from all the soccer he was playing.

After lunch, we had a home visit with a teenage boy who was living with his grandmother because his mother had died when he was young. He lives with his brother, cousins and aunty all in a one-room house with a small garden out the back. A tough live with very little but they were grateful for the help provided by Compassion and his sponsor.