The voice of Queensland Baptists April 2011
Ask the right person! Life lessons Dangerous daughters
Print post approved ISSN: 11323-7829 The Queensland Baptist - first published in 1890. This series Vol 9 Issue 2.
a whole new way in aged care is here Seasons is more than just an incredibly exciting new way in aged care. It is a new industry benchmark, a direct and dedicated response to growing public dissatisfaction with existing options in aged care in this country. Developed by a team of Australia’s experienced and most innovative aged care experts, Seasons combines; • 24/7 low to high, dementia and palliative nursing care • own your private 1 or 2 bedroom self-contained apartment • allows couples to stay together, even if they have different care needs • welcomes all pets
freecall 1300 506 116 www.SeasonsAgedCare.com.au
Queensland Conference and Camping Centres. As a ministry of the Queensland Baptists, we exist to create life changing experiences through excellence in hospitality, service and teaching. Modern facilities and dedicated staff at our three breathtaking locations will make your next event easy and memorable.
your needs, our mission
This is all within the comfort and security of our unique, values-based communities. Inspect our Seasons communities today and see for yourself what so many have already discovered, that there really is no comparison.
BAPLinK investing in ministry
Access (at call) Not cheque accounts
Current interest rates and terms effective 01 JUNE 2010
Term Deposits QCCC Brookfield (Brisbane) – 150 beds QCCC Mapleton (Sunshine Coast) – 240 beds QCCC Tamborine Mountain (Gold Coast) – 300 beds QCCC Expeditions
SPECIAL RATES FOR TERMS LONGER THAN 3 YEARS
More information at www.qccc.com.au
BAPLink Interest Free Fund investing in ministry Interest free deposits at call to provide interest free loans to churches Please note: Rates are subject to change without notice, with the exception of fixed term deposits already lodged. Interest is calculated on daily balances and paid or accumulated half yearly unless otherwise agreed. Deposits under 12 months; interest paid on maturity.
BAPLink: PO Box 6166, Mitchelton 4053 Phone: 3354 5611 1800 650 062 (outside Brisbane) www.qb.com.au/baplink
37 QB partners
In this issue Comment: David Loder Speaking out: John Sweetman Baptisms QB Convention 2011 Around the regions Persecution brief Reviews Fun zone Classifieds
05 06 08 10 11 40 42 44 46
QB ministries Ignite (QB Kids) Uncool or too old? (QB Youth) Archives (QB Archives) R1202: The Hand (QCCC) Washing and guilt (QB Women) More training opportunities
14 16 17 18 20 26
Commissioned to go (Global Interaction)
Articles Imitating Jesus series Reflections on recent events We have a voice Life lessons The change process (part 2) Ask the right person! Outward bound for the soul The church is fine! About newcomers When making the ‘right’ decision is not enough
24 28 31 32 34 35 36 37 38 41
Our cover: Believer’s baptism pictures the connecting of the believer with Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. How appropriate to feature baptism on our cover as we focus on the real meaning of Easter celebrations! And come Easter Sunday, we can all say with complete and joyful assurance, ‘He is risen!’ ‘He is risen indeed!’
www.qb.com.au April 2011
News, views & issues
The qb is a member of the Australasian Religious Press Association, published bimonthly by Queensland Baptist Services Group in February, April, June, August, October and December. Editor: Robynne Milne Advertising: Emily Twible Design: Shell Graphix Print: Fergies Print & Mail
From the Editor A
s Easter approaches and we prepare our hearts and minds to focus on its real meaning, Fil Anderson (Outward bound for the soul) shares some thoughts about Lenten practices. Fil and his wife, Lucie, will be with us in May when Fil comes to share as guest speaker at QB Convention 2011. Author of ‘Running on empty’ and ‘Breaking the rules, trading performance for intimacy with God’, Fil has much to share about ‘being’ rather than ‘doing’. Sue Peters (Washing and guilt) hits the mark for mums again with her comments. John Sweetman (Growing closer to Jesus and the church) will cause you to think about which stage you’re at, and Ian Hussey (Engaging newcomers in your church family) draws on his research about how friendly we are to the new people who come to our churches. We hear more from those involved in the Queensland disasters and news from Christchurch where the beautiful old Oxford Street Baptist Church is now in ruins. Please continue to pray for those affected by these natural disasters, including people affected by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Jim Greenbury (Life lessons) continues his articles on the life of Asa and concludes: ‘It is not the act of a moment but the course of a life that most pleases or displeases God’. That’s encouraging for all of us as we strive to live as Jesus followers. Easter blessings! Robynne Milne Editor
Make a splash
This magazine is printed with soy based inks and paper from sustainable forest plantations. We welcome reader feedback and opinions about our articles. Remember to include your full name and postal address. Articles and advertising in The qb express the opinions of the authors, not necessarily the editor or publishers. Every effort is made to ensure the correctness of facts and information however we cannot accept responsibility for errors. The publishers reserve the right to accept or decline any advertising. Deadline for advertisement and copy: 10th of the month prior to the month of publication. PO Box 6166 Mitchelton Qld 4053 Ph (07) 3354 5633 Fax (07) 3354 5646 Advertising rates are listed at www.qb.com.au - follow the links to qb magazine. Prices are also available on enquiry and advertising packages can be tailored to suit your budget. Reduced contract rates apply to three bookings within a 12 month period. Please contact us for details. A limited number of inserts are also accepted. Copyright © 2003 by Queensland Baptist Services Group. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means without written permission from the publisher.
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April 2011 www.qb.com.au
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DEEPER – Imitating Jesus
‘I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, (2) with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, (3) eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace’ (Ephesians 4:1).
I’ve had to wear a number of different uniforms over the years: school, Boy Scouts and Army. On some occasions, with each, I was told, ‘The reputation of this organisation is dependent upon how you behave whilst wearing this uniform’. Now Paul is telling us the same! ‘Walk in a manner worthy of the calling!’ We wear the ‘uniform’ of a Christ-one. Demonstrate what it is to receive that high calling.
an opportunity to outline the Board’s thinking in this area and to invite our pastors to reflect on what this means personally and for the churches in which they minister. So far they have been very well attended and enthusiastically received.
Here in these few verses are indicators: humility, gentleness, patience, understanding, genuine love and care for others and unity. While some of these characteristics are easy for us most of the time, we will be tested on all of them sometime. Often the hardest place to put them into practice is at home – even our spiritual home, the church. To do so is to imitate Jesus, wearing the uniform. Floods, cyclones and earthquakes! I would like to thank Queensland Baptists for their generosity in supporting our Flood and Cyclone Appeal. Much of this money has been distributed already with more claims being processed on a regular basis while money continues to come in. I am sure you have been shocked by the events in New Zealand and Japan. I have sent our sincere condolences to the Baptist Union of New Zealand and to the Japan Baptist Convention and Japan Baptist Union assuring them of our prayers. Imitating Christ Area Meetings We have commenced Area Meetings with our pastors around the State along the Board theme ‘Imitating Jesus’. This has been
Ordination Services Since Assembly approved the option for pastors to be ordained in their local churches, more and more have done so, to the point where there will be no candidates for ordination at Convention this year. Quite a number have been ordained in their local Church setting; either Stephen Ball or I conduct these services. Finally… Our focus this year is to be imitators of Jesus. Someone pointed out to me that an ‘imitation’ can also refer to a cheap copy. True, we have added that extra meaning to the use of this word. Sadly some people only offer a cheap imitation of the real Jesus. May it never be so for us! Let’s be the genuine article for Jesus in focussing our lives on Him through confession, renunciation, surrender, obedience and faith. David Loder General Superintendent, Queensland Baptists email@example.com
www.qb.com.au April 2011
Growing closer to Jesus and the church In 2004, Willow Creek (a large church in the USA) did a survey (called Reveal) of their church people to try to find out what helped people to grow spiritually. Since then the survey has expanded to include 280,000 people in 1200 congregations. The findings of the survey have great significance for all churches wanting to see people grow to spiritual maturity.
...results indicated that people who are living Christcentred lives really do make a difference for God.
The survey measured two area of spiritual growth: 1. Growth in spiritual behaviours like tithing, evangelising, and serving. 2. Growth in spiritual attitudes like love for God and love for people. While increasing church involvement did have some impact on spiritual behaviours, it had very little impact on spiritual attitudes.
Closeness to Jesus is the key So they looked for another measure that would predict whether Christians developed both spiritual attitudes and spiritual behaviours. They found that holistic spiritual growth could be predicted best by a person’s relationship with Jesus. The greater a person’s reported closeness to Jesus, the more likely they were to display both spiritual attitudes and spiritual behaviours.
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
This ‘closeness to Jesus’ was simplified into four basic stages: 1. Exploring Christianity - ‘I believe in God, but I’m not sure about Jesus. My faith is not a significant part of my life’. 2. Growing in Christ - ‘I believe in Jesus, and I’m working on what it means to get to know him’. 3. Close to Christ - ‘I feel close to Christ and depend on him daily for guidance’. 4. Christ-centred – ‘God is all I need in my life. He is enough. Everything I do is a reflection of Christ’. The results were consistent in that as people reported a growing closeness to Jesus, they also reported a growing desire to worship God, serve God, live for God, love people, lay down their lives for others, and share their faith (spiritual attitudes), as well as a willingness to tithe, serve the church, serve those in need, and invite people to church (spiritual behaviours). These results indicated that people who are living Christ-centred lives really do make a difference for God. The more you grow spiritually in your relationship with Jesus, the more you serve, tithe and evangelise. It really is worthwhile helping people to pursue a Christ-centred life. It will make a huge difference. As we draw close to Jesus, we see dramatic changes in how we live our lives and relate to others. Those who live close to Jesus do the most for God and his kingdom.
Growing closeness to Jesus How do people grow close to Jesus? If those who live close to Jesus (4. Christ-centred) actually have the greatest impact in the world and the church, then helping people grow through to living a Christ-centred life is absolutely vital. But how does this happen? According to the surveys, the ministry of the church has a primary impact on the nurture of closeness to Jesus in the first two stages (1. Exploring Christianity and 2. Growing in Christ). Church services with their worship, teaching and fellowship play a vital role. As people move to stage 2, small groups are also important as well as participation in church ministries that involve serving others. But as people move to stage 3 (Close to Christ), the spiritual impact of weekend services and small groups drops in significance for personal spiritual growth. It appears that people at this stage are less dependent on the more formalised discipling of the church to help them grow closer to Jesus and more dependent on personal disciplines such as Bible reading and reflection, solitude and prayer. They are not dependent on the church to hold their hand. The church’s main role for the spiritual growth of stage 3 Christians is to provide opportunities to serve and to build close relationships with others. At stage 4 (Christ-centred), the spiritual disciplines appear to become valued daily practices as they provide the lifeblood for a deepening relationship with Jesus. Spiritual friendships and mentors also become vital and serving people in need seems to occur naturally without the need for a church program to facilitate it. Spiritual growth requires more individual effort as a Christian matures. This means that if Christians don’t eventually take responsibility for, and put effort into, their own personal growth, they will generally become stagnant spiritually, no matter how many church activities they attend. Stalled and/or dissatisfied with church The survey also asked people if they felt they were stalled spiritually. The results were Stage 1 - 42%, Stage 2 - 32%, Stage 3 - 15%, Stage 4 - 10%. This shows that people are much more likely to stall in their spiritual growth in the early stages. This is a good challenge for the church in a way, because at these stages effective programs (worship services, small groups, discipling programs, and service ministries) can make a big difference. If our church programs are Christ-centred and effective, we can really help these people grow spiritually.
On the other hand, dissatisfaction with the church appeared to be spread relatively evenly across the four stages. The figures showed dissatisfaction with the church being: Stage 1 - 24%, Stage 2- 17%, Stage 3 - 15%, Stage 4 - 18%. The stage 4 figures are concerning in that these people are most likely to be growing spiritually and to be doing most for the church and community. They represent our best evangelists, volunteers and donors. Yet 41% of those dissatisfied at stage 4 say that they are likely to leave the church. This has also been picked up by other research. There is a group of mature Christians who are leaving the organised church. Opportunities for the Church There are many encouraging findings in the results of this survey. To know that most people are growing spiritually through the ministries of the church is very affirming. I know that these are American statistics, but I suspect it would be the same in Australia. I see at least two major opportunities/challenges for the church. First, we need to get our discipling right in the early stages of spiritual growth. This is where most people stall. This is where the church can make the most difference. Worship, teaching, small groups, discipling programs and service ministries all play a vital role in helping people grow closer to Jesus. We must know what God is calling us to do and to do this well. Church ‘programs’ remain key for the spiritual growth of most people who want to follow Jesus. It’s easy for mature Christian leaders to forget how important programs are for newer Christians. Second, we need to support Christians in the later stages of spiritual growth. The fact that 18% of people deeply in love with Jesus and committed to serving him are disconnecting with the church suggests that we may have a way to go. Some contributions the church can make include valuing spiritual disciplines, developing prayer meetings and spiritual retreats, providing mature and wise leadership, offering thoughtful worship and biblical input, connecting spiritual friends, mentors and accountability partners, encouraging ministry outside the church, and supporting a variety of ministries to the needy. John Sweetman Principal, Malyon College John.firstname.lastname@example.org
www.qb.com.au April 2011
Deep things of the heart On 21 January, four brothers were baptised at Toowoomba Community Church. It was a joyful occasion as William, Chris, Marcus and Andrew Lehman walked into the water to be baptised by their father, Dale. Their mum, Heather, writes: ‘Parenting is full of highs and lows, expectations and hopes. Our four sons are in their teens and from parents who had gone before, we had many reasons to fear this season of life. It hasn’t been all plain sailing but I am thoroughly enjoying these years where our boys are maturing, becoming young men and growing much taller than me. It’s exciting to observe God work in their lives, discuss thoughts and ideas and make challenging God-directed decisions. ‘Last year they decided to be baptised together so things were set in motion to coincide with Marcus’ return from PNG and their ‘sister’s’ return from an overseas holiday. Over the summer as we chatted about their testimonies and what the day would mean, one or more of us would be emotional. Deep things of the heart do that. We prayed together asking that above all, God would be glorified. Dale only decided the week before that he would actually baptise the boys. ‘Our expectations for the day were low compared to what God had in store. The boys spoke so clearly and confidently of God’s work in their lives. When the one who was speaking became emotional, the others stepped forward to place hands on his shoulders, to encourage and support.
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
It was a time of celebration for our church! People were still teary after the service and our young men received many hugs and handshakes from members of the church. Men and women were encouraged, deeply moved, challenged and inspired. Our boys were being obedient to God’s command to believe and be baptised but they witnessed God at work in other people’s lives too.’
A closer walk After sharing how they were both brought up in Christian families and were a part of the church in South Africa, Martin and Linda Van Rensberg said that they had never before experienced the closeness of Christian Family and walk with the Lord that they have found since moving to Australia. ‘We believe in Jesus, we have repented of our sins, we have trusted Jesus with our salvation. He is our King; we belong to Him,’ they said. On Sunday 22 February, Martin and Linda were baptised at Pastor Jabin and Tarnya Mills’ home in Mackay. It was a special day of blessing for the people of Beaches Baptist Church.
Martin, Linda and Pastor J
Please pray for these newly baptised believers: Bundaberg Michelle McConnell Shane McConnell John Milner Patrick Morris Darryl Quinlan Malcolm Quinlan City North Ashleigh Kamst Ben Lean
Leichhardt Michael Clarke Angela Ferguson Katelyn O’Connell Joshua Pryde
Mareeba Anna Wason
Mackay Linda Van Rensberg Martin Van Rensberg
South Bank Grant Butler Jude Butler Johnny Yang
Mundubbera Ken Patterson
Toowoomba Community William Lehman Christopher Lehman Marcus Lehman Andrew Lehman
www.qb.com.au April 2011
Going deeper… Imitating Jesus
Queensland Baptists’ Convention 2011 Don’t miss this outstanding opportunity to meet with other Baptists to praise, worship and learn together. Hear Fil Anderson, author and speaker. Book now!
We are looking forward to another fantastic time together at our annual QB Convention and to welcoming Fil Anderson among us. In line with the QB Board’s theme for 2011, our focus at Pastors’ and Spouses’ Conference and at Convention will be ‘Imitating Jesus’. In this issue you’ll receive a set of cards that will help you as we consider what it means to imitate Christ. I trust they will be a useful tool. Place them in your wallet or purse and refer to them often! And, plan now to attend QB Convention 2011. God bless! David Loder ‘Welcome to Brisbane’s southern bay-side region known as The Redlands. We believe this is a special part of God’s wonderful creation, with a coastal community and beautiful islands in the southern part of Morton Bay. The area has long been known for its rich red soil and many market gardens supplying produce for Brisbane and beyond. In recent years, the vegetables and flowers have given way to housing developments as the population of the area has grown. Now with centres at Capalaba, Victoria Point and Cleveland, it is a thriving retail and commercial community with some areas of bush, and even a few koalas. The Baptist Churches of our area are combining to present QB Convention 2011 to you. Our prayer is that as you join with us, you will be encouraged in your journey with our Lord and come to appreciate another part of his great world.’
Tuesday 10 May – Friday 13 May FOR PASTORS AND THEIR SPOUSES
(Detailed information has been forwarded to Pastors) QCCC Tamborine, 255 Beacon Road, North Tamborine • Tuesday 10 May – Thursday 12 May Pastors’ & Spouses’ Conference (registration required) Cleveland Baptist Church, 240 Bloomfield Street, Cleveland • 6.00 pm Thursday 12 May Appreciation Dinner (for pastors and spouses, RSVP required)
Richard Kingham Senior Pastor, Cleveland Baptist Church
Cleveland Baptist Church, 240 Bloomfield Street, Cleveland • 7.30 pm Thursday 12 May Thanksgiving Service, Speaker: Fil Anderson
‘Greetings to my Queensland brothers and sisters. I’m looking forward to meeting you and discovering what God has to say to each one of us as we focus on the Convention’s theme: Going Deeper...Imitating Jesus. I anticipate that drawing closer to God and you will be a remarkable encounter.’
• 7.30 am Friday 13 May Prayer breakfast (RSVP required for catering) • 9.00 am Friday 13 May (registration required) Assembly Business Day Devotion: Fil Anderson Lunch featuring Queensland Baptist Care (QBC) Fil Anderson Journey Resources
• 6.00 pm Friday 13 May Dinner featuring Malyon & CALAM (RSVP required) • 7.30 pm Friday 13 May Recognition Service, Speaker: Fil Anderson
Email: email@example.com Fax to: 3354 5646 Mail to: Convention 2011, Queensland Baptists, PO Box 6166, Mitchelton Q 4053.
Baptist churches around Queensland • Sunday 15 May Queensland Baptists Day of Prayer
Yes! I would like to attend QB Convention 2011 Name(s): Address: Prayer breakfast (No charge – donation at door) No of person(s): Business Day (lunch provided) (no charge) No of person(s):
Malyon/CALAM dinner ($10/pp) No of person(s):
PAYMENT: o Cheque o Visa o Mastercard
PAYMENT Amount: $
Name on card:
Around the regions
can play in supporting them and acting out the Kingdom that Jesus talked so much about.’ For more information visit http://www.ewafrica.org/ click ‘Break the Cycle’.
Tim and friend
Do you like fries?
Four enthusiastic and very fit people will soon attempt a gruelling mountain bike ride. Three of the four are Baptists, and one of those is Tim Burns (Bracken Ridge Baptist). Tim writes: ‘In July and August this year a small team of slightly unhinged, yet determined cyclists are attempting a monumental ride: “How big?” I hear you ask. Well, about 5700km in 28 days, averaging around 202km a day. To put it into perspective, Brisbane to Perth is about 4300km! ‘The aim of this ride is to draw attention to the orphans and vulnerable children (OVCs) of Southern Africa and the work Eagles Wings is doing there, through local churches, as part of the Acts Initiative. A documentary will be produced along the way. It will compare our physical struggle on the bikes with the daily grind of life as an orphan, and it will show our visits to ACTS Initiative partner churches in order to highlight the great work they do in supporting OVCs in their communities.
A personal face for City Tab
Between 7am and 9am on the first Friday of each month, the church at City Tabernacle Baptist fire up the barbecue and heat up the espresso coffee machine to serve breakfast to those who pass by. The event provides a personal face to the big old building that is shut during CBD peak hours during the working week. The regular breakfast creates opportunities for promoting upcoming church events, and allows engagement in some deep conversations with people who seek to know more about God.
Ray Loakes and John Baskerville.
Tim in Zambia with Eagles Wings. His next trip will be VERY different!
‘When Reid Anderton (Executive Director, EW Australia) invited me to ride with him, asking, “Do you like rides?” I replied “Yes” because I thought he said, “Do you like fries?” Well, needless to say, I do like fries, and apparently I also like riding a bike! ‘So here we are, starting to prepare our minds, bodies and hearts for the journey ahead. ‘I love Africa. It is alive and vibrant and full of surprises! My hope is that this ride and documentary will give a new voice to the millions of OVCs in the region and the role we, here in Australia,
With all the rain we’ve had, it made sense to hold the first Annual Mundubbera Lawn Mowing Competition recently. Held at the School, the grass was long, the plots where marked and the mowers primed. The first competition was an artistic extravaganza, as contestants worked hard to create a winning pattern. Some even resorted to spray paint to improve their attempts! After much consultation the judges agreed that entries from Elsie Kimber, Dave Holleran and Raymond Loakes were the best and ‘The Golden Shears’ award went to Dave for his outstanding interpretation of Calvary. It was fun to watch Ray Loakes run rings around some of the older drivers in the ride-on section and Hayden Crofts excelled in the push mower event. Next year promises to be bigger and better, with better prizes, a parade of champions, and hopefully, fireworks. www.qb.com.au April 2011
Around the regions
‘We say with Peter in response to Jesus... “Where else are we to go, you alone have the words of eternal life” (John 6:68).’ Alongside his busy schedule as church planter, Andrew is also chaplain to the Association of Surfing Professionals’ World Long Board Tour. He attended the World Longboard Titles in Hawaii last year and in his capacity as chaplain performed four memorials including one for the Past World Champion Andy Irons. Andrew presents memorial trophy; Hawaii
Real truth about Jesus
Baptist pastor Andrew Carruthers is the church planter at SALT Baptist Church, Peregian Beach. The SALT website www. saltbaptist.org.au has some good things to say about being real:
Andrew has also produced a feature length Christian Surfing movie – FLUX which portrays the journey of ten surfers across different generations; aged from 13 – 58 years as they live together and wrestle with how to follow Jesus, the 1st century son of God, in a 21st century setting. How to live today’s lifestyle and still be authentic followers of Jesus.
‘We are REAL, by this we mean that what you see on Sunday is what you get on Monday. We believe that knowing and worshipping God is not just a Sunday event, but is a reflection of everyday life...the great, the good and the not so good are all in the mix of a life of worship. ‘We believe that Jesus was a REAL man, both completely human and completely God. He was not some kind of pseudo Swedish beauty pageant entrant with a purple sash and feathered blowdried hair. He was a Jewish carpenter with rough hands and a weatherbeaten face. He was followed around the countryside by a rough looking bunch including fishermen and tax gatherers. He was working class. But Jesus had a piercing gaze that went straight to the heart.
The movie was produced in the context of living together in New Zealand, surfing and studying the Seven ‘I AM’ statements in John’s gospel. The movie is due for release on the Australian Christian Channel in May and as a DVD in July. Go to www.saltbaptist.org www.fluxthemovie.org www.saltimages.com.au
‘Jesus was also the true and accurate representation of God. He was God in the flesh (John 1:14; Colossians 1:15). Everything we need to know about God has been displayed in the person of Jesus (John 1:18). Jesus has made God known. This is for REAL. ‘Because of this we value speaking and teaching REAL truth about Jesus. Not just good notions and pithy sayings. We affirm Jesus as the Son of God, Messiah, the only way to heaven and only mediator between God and Man.
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
Archbishop Aspinall, Archbishop John Bathersby and Rev Bruce Johnson at the Sunshine Coast event. Courtesy of The Catholic Leader © Conan Whitehouse
Leaders share their personal faith journeys
Christians in the South East Corner have enjoyed the opportunity to join together to hear Church leaders share their personal faith journeys at the Living Jesus – 2011 Christian gatherings. One of the meetings was hosted by Cleveland Baptist Church, where the speakers included QB General Superintendent, David Loder. He was joined by Archbishop John Bathersby (Roman Catholic) and the Reverend Noel Noack (Lutheran Church). Archbishop Phillip Aspinall (Anglican Church) and the Reverend Bruce Johnson (Uniting Church) participated at meetings in other areas.
Around the regions
Sheep among wolves
Dr Michael Youssef, the Egyptian-born pastor of Church of the Apostles in Atlanta, Georgia (USA) and founder/president of the global media ministry Leading The Way, will be ‘preaching the uncompromising Truth with real passion’ at four evening meetings that will be open to the public when he next visits Australia in May. Singer/songwriter Steve Grace will accompany Dr Youssef. Entrance to these events is free, but tickets are required to ensure a seat. The Brisbane event will be held at City Tabernacle Baptist Church, 163 Wickham Terrace on Friday 27 May at 7.15 pm. In Matthew 10:16 Jesus says, ‘I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves’. Dr Youssef will unpack these words of Scripture and explain what it means to be sent as SHEEP AMONG WOLVES. Visit www.leadingtheway.com.au to register for tickets, phone 1300 133 589 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
of Mount Isa Baptists. Everyone is also encouraged to bring along something to share during the thanksgiving segment memories of the Isa or something that has happened since leaving, presented as a brief comment; a song, poem, artwork, drama, or a Bible verse. Of course, if you prefer not to do this, that’s fine too. Ann McGrath would love to know if you can attend and would like to keep you up to day via email. Please email email@example.com.
On the move
Mount Isa Baptist Reunion
On Saturday 30 July, anyone who has been associated with Mount Isa Baptist Church is welcome to attend a reunion to be held at Clontarf Baptist Church at 6 Alice Street, Clontarf. The McGraths, Forrests and Kents are planning an event that will commence with morning tea and a catch up with others at 10am, to be followed by lunch and a time of thanksgiving afterwards. Please bring morning tea and lunch to share (food can be heated if required). Tea and coffee will be provided. Also bring along memories, photos and musical instruments. This will be an informal time designed to provide an opportunity to remember, renew friendships and just celebrate being a part
• Rev Ross Wardill has accepted a call to Deception Bay • Rev Richard Morris’ has concluded at Tamborine • Rev Michael Pocklington has accepted a call to Lawson Baptist NSW • Rev Ray Airosa has accepted a call to Hervey Bay • Rev Justin Petrie has concluded at Heritage • Rev Matt Govan has accepted a part-time call to Clontarf • Pastor Luther Ramsay has accepted a call to Kingsridge • Rev Colin Stoodley has accepted a call to Beachside • Pastor Daniel Wallis has accepted a call to South Toowoomba • Rev David Toscano has accepted a call to Ipswich as Pastor for Mission • Pastor Karen Haynes has moved from part-time to full-time at North-East
Living Jesus 2011 – time to chat at Cleveland Baptist
www.qb.com.au April 2011
QB kids & their families
We had a great day at IGNITE. Some days are days you will remember... I think IGNITE 2011 will rate a mention for many years to come. • How effective are our churches in evangelising families in our communities? • Are the families in our churches providing spiritual nurture to their children? • What is the role of children’s leaders in the local church? • Are our programs and strategies for outreach and sharing our faith in relevant ways working? In recent weeks, Mark Griffiths put these questions to children’s workers and church leaders right around Australia in his keynote addresses at Children’s Ministry Network conferences in Perth and Melbourne, and in Queensland at the Ignite Conference. Mark is the leader of the Warfield Churches, a family of Anglican based churches based outside London, UK. He also oversees children’s ministry to 25,000 children every summer. He has spoken in a wide range of church contexts nationally and internationally over several decades, teaches in several theological colleges and is the author of six books. In 2009 he
Mark Griffiths delivers his address.
completed his PhD in child evangelism and released his latest book, ‘One Generation from Extinction’. His research looks at the origins of the Sunday School movement from 1780 and the work of Robert Raikes. Raikes saw his idea grow to reach 300,000 unchurched children within five years. Mark Griffiths’ work reflects his extensive research. He considers what makes children ‘tick’, what basic theology is at work in Christian outreach and what is working around the world today. 93% of children in Australia have no connection with a local church. Mark’s work provides some interesting insights into the effectiveness of our existing strategies and programs. Download Mark’s keynote address at www.igniteexpo.org.au/ brisbane2011 and add ‘Don’t Tell Stories, Change Lives’ to your ‘must read’ list this year! Julie Terry for the QB Kids and their families Team
The team’s display stand at Unite.
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
QB kids & their families
Comments from Unite: ‘One of our primary responsibilities to our children is to live out and present the true Jesus story, not just one of society’s stories that is spiritualised to look and sound like the Jesus story.’ (Matt Govan, Pastor for Children’s Ministries at Clontarf Beach Baptist Church)
‘Mark Griffiths reminded us that we need to let the Lord Jesus do his transforming work in our own lives as we seek to minister to these precious young lives.’ (Michelle Farley, Kindy Coordinator - City Tabernacle Baptist Church)
‘Jesus will mess up your structures for the sake of the one.’
- Mark Griffiths (Jo Stotschek, Mother of child in Kidlings, Gateway Baptist Church)
‘It is hard to find Jesus when he is wrapped in western Christianity! The Jesus story is great news.’ - Mark Griffiths (Ruth Peckman, Pastor Toowoomba Community Baptist Church)
The QB Kids and their Families Team is planning one event this year and YOU are invited. QB Kids Connect is about Pastors, Church leaders, Children’s Ministry Leaders and Children’s Ministry Teams meeting together and catching up. It’s about being inspired by thought-provoking input from Tim Hanna (CEO Compassion Australia) as he unpacks ‘Children in the Kingdom of God - imitating Christ’s attitude’ and being encouraged by others who share your journey. Put Saturday 16th July in your diary now and RSVP by 12 July.
www.qb.com.au April 2011
Uncool or too old? Two questions I often get asked are, ‘Can I work with young adults If am middle aged or older?’ and ‘Can I have a ministry with Young Adults if I am not cool?’ Well, let me answer those questions by introducing you to one, David Rodigan. Rodigan is English, bald, white and middle aged. He looks like a cross between George Costanza and your high school geography teacher. He is basically one of the dorkiest looking men you could encounter. Of course there is nothing wrong with that…but there could be when you take into account what Rodigan loves to do. Soundclashes are competitions that began in the ghettoes of Jamaica between rival DJs, and their respective sound-systems. The DJs play their best tunes, and the crowd declares a winner. It is not a competition for the fainthearted. In the brutally competitive world of Jamaican Dancehall reggae soundclashes, David Rodigan is a legend, due to the fact that he is almost unbeatable. Rodigan regularily defeats DJs and selectas half his age. To the uninitiated, Rodigan’s antics look like the dancing drunk uncle that you wish had not shown up to your wedding. Yet in the whole Jamaican soundclash scene, despite being an outsider, he garners massive respect. So how on earth does someone who is so obviously not cool gain such respect in a world where coolness is essential? 1. LONGEVITY: Rodigan has been travelling to Jamaica for years to hone his craft. His respect has been built on years of being on the ground and testing his skills and building up support. I remember someone telling me that ministry 16
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
is spelt T.I.M.E. Rapport cannot be built with young adults overnight. Instead, respect is built over time. Stick around long enough and people will start listening to you. 2. KNOWLEDGE: Rodigan knows his stuff. His encyclopaedic knowledge of dancehall and reggae is what gets props from the people in the know. Ministry is the same, people will listen to you if you have something to say; something interesting, relevant and important to their lives. 3. PASSION: At the end of the day, Rodigan jumps around like an embarrassing nut, but after watching him for a while his sheer passion, lostness in the music that he loves is what is infectious. If you have passion for God, passion for ministry and a passion for young adults, it will cut through what is cool, hip and ephemeral. 4. RELATIONSHIP: Rodigan was friends with Bob Marley and just about every reggae luminary you can name. At the end of the day young adults, like all people, are desperate for genuine relationship. In ministry, like in life, relationship trumps age. And besides, somehow Rodigan’s total uncoolness ironically makes him so much cooler, authentic and engaging than the sight of pastors trying to fit into skinny jeans. Mark Sayers is the Creative Director of Uber. He is a writer, thinker and highly sought-after speaker in the matters of young adults ministry, pop-culture and mission to the west. Mark also spends his time doing mission and ministry with Red Church in Melbourne, where he is the Senior leader. He is married to Trudi and has a daughter, Grace, and twin boys, Billy and Hudson.
Anne Klose receives award from Eric Kopittke, Chairman, Baptist Heritage
ARCHIVES Anne Klose wins Essay Prize Baptist Heritage Qld has announced that Anne Klose (Gateway Baptist) is the winner of the 2010 Heritage Essay Prize conducted biennially in association with the Malyon College course on Baptist history and principles. Anne was presented with her cash prize at the February meeting of Baptist Heritage Qld. Anne is studying for a PhD in Baptist theology and submitted the winning essay when she participated in the Malyon course conducted by Dr D Morcom last year.
and music teacher who appeared at a crucial point in the very early history of Rockhampton Church after moving from Victoria. His arrival proved to be a God-send! Thomas W I’Erson (b 1812) spent several years in Geelong after arriving from the UK in the early 1850s. As well as working at various schools as a specialist teacher and a promoter of the arts in the town, he was an active member of the Aberdeen Street Baptist Church. When his wife Phoebe died late in 1869, he had a profound spiritual experience and received a call to Christian ministry which followed up on an earlier desire for missionary service.
The essay topic explored the influence of interpretations of the 17th century origins of the Baptist movement on contemporary Baptist life. The essay focussed on whether the historic Baptist position was strongly in favour of independent local churches, or whether they favoured links between churches.
His son-in-law had already moved to Rockhampton because of his work with a nationwide firm of stock and station agents. So, acting on his dying wife’s last wish, Thomas followed him; arriving early in 1870. His fine singing voice (bass) was recognised at the first Baptist service he attended and he was soon engaged in sharing the preaching with some other key laymen. This was during a difficult period in the life of the church which had been formed only eight years earlier. The church had been without a pastor since the first pastor had been forced to leave for family health reasons.
Contrary to some current views, Anne found that there was strong evidence favouring definite relationships between local churches, but that, over the years, various factors had undermined this conviction. Anne argued that one of the major reasons for the current failure to develop proper links between churches and with the Baptist Union was a lack of theological clarity among members and leaders. The essay concluded with a plea for Baptists at local and denominational levels to develop a more profound understanding of the biblical and theological teaching about the nature of the Church.
Although in his 60s, Thomas I’Erson soon took over the preaching and became an honorary pastor after ordination to the office. After many years, the church offered him some financial support. A full-time pastor (also from Geelong) was eventually secured in 1881 and the two shared the ministry in the growing town, with Thomas looking after the work north of the river. His contribution spread far beyond the Baptist community. He was well known in other churches and in the local community for his artistic work and energetic service to people. He was responsible for forming a philharmonic society in the city.
The full essay is printed in the current edition of QB Forum available by mail for $2. You may also wish to subscribe to QB Forum ($10 per annum). Subscriptions include membership of Baptist Heritage Qld. (Enquires archives@ qb.com.au phone 07 3878 3178 or mail to Baptist Archives c/- PO Box 6166 Mitchelton Qld 4053.)
Sadly, during a later pastorate, misunderstandings occurred and relationships deteriorated, causing Thomas I’Erson to drop out of the work. However, he remained in the town. In 1892 a celebration of his selfless service to the churches and wider society was held to honour him on his 80th birthday. A broad range of people attended, indicating the esteem in which he was held. After having witnessed the arrival of many Baptist pastors, he finally died on 20 July 1902. He was a man who acted on the call of God and even though he found life burdensome at times, he made a great contribution towards the survival and growth of the Baptist church in Rockhampton.
Just at the right time People often appear in the life of the church to give it a boost just at the right time – to save it from difficulty, or even disaster. A great example of this was an art
The Baptist Archives Email firstname.lastname@example.org Phone 3878 3178, 3354 5642 Mail The Baptist Archives, QB Centre, PO Box 6166, Mitchelton Q 4053
www.qb.com.au April 2011
R1202: The Hand At last month’s Christian Venues Association Outlook Conference (for leaders of major Australian campsites) the keynote speaker was Tim Costello. Together with several of his World Vision staff, he made a strong case for a social gospel where a campaign of works and community involvement is integral to effectively sharing the gospel. It provoked a lot of discussion about the approach to ministry and mission in the camping context, and caused a collision between two different worldviews on what constitutes legitimate ministry. Some sites have strongly held views on the primacy of compulsory Bible teaching to all camps where others are taking a more pragmatic approach to how they cater for their secular guests. The internet age and the rise of a virile and antagonistic secular humanism in the public school sector means that the day is not far off, if it is not already upon us, where twentieth century style Bible teaching will become a barrier and stumbling block to secular schools and community groups accessing Christian campsites. This situation was highlighted during a discussion between the World Vision guys and the advocates of Bible teaching when talk turned to World Vision’s work in Afghanistan. The question was posed: ‘Would you rather we insist on presenting a Western gospel and find ourselves locked out of Afghanistan, or would you rather we’re there feeding their orphans and widows and letting our actions speak?’
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
To quote the latest political catch phrase, when it comes to QCCC’s approach to Bible teaching and camps we will neither ‘rule it in nor rule it out’. This is because we have developed a ‘Trojan horse’ approach to our ministry and mission in the form of the R1202 concept we are introducing into all of our Centres. ‘R1202’ is a reference to the Romans 12:02: ‘Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mould, but let God re-mould your minds from within.’ It also references Jesus’ comment in Luke 17:21 that the Kingdom of Heaven lies within. Also known as ‘The Hand’, we believe the R1202 theme will enable us to partner with visiting groups to reflect on the key attributes and values required for a successful life. We are developing camp programs that are themed around R1202. The beauty of R1202 is in its simplicity. The ‘Be attitudes’ can be used to shape high end leadership content for a Year 12 leadership camp, but at the same time can also wrap around an activity learning program for Year 4s. As it is developed, we will make it a flexible tool that fits the objectives and outcomes of each group who visit. We will also develop resources so that the lessons learned from R1202 can last long after camp concludes. Our staff has identified approximately 70 object lessons that can be drawn from R1202 using colours, fingers and other
concepts. For instance, let’s take the white ‘be humble’ finger. When developing R1202, one of the fingers some of us were unsure about was the ‘be humble’ finger because we thought it might be a difficult sell; particularly trying to explain humility to kids at Primary School level. However, as we developed things and received input from a lot of people and educators, the ‘humble’ finger quickly became a non-negotiable part of the package, because it is hard to explain and this highlighted the need for greater understanding and awareness. Here are just a few of the ways we can use it: Finger and colour rationale: • Universal sign - for ‘Number One’. (Humility means living life with a focus on not putting others first. We are not #1) • Universal sign – Points to God. • Universal sign – Used to point at others. (We should be slow to accuse or blame others.) • White – Blends in and does not seek to stand out except against black. A colour complementary to all. Does not clash with other colours. Humility requires personal responsibility, therefore the white index finger is connected to the hand because it is a virtue that requires us to moderate our own behaviour and attitudes to show honour to others. ‘Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and fail to notice the plank in your own? How can you say to your brother, “Let me get the speck out of your eye”, when there is a plank in your own? You fraud! Take the plank out of your own eye first, and then you can see clearly enough to remove your brother’s speck of dust’ (Matthew 7:3-5). These are just a few of the ways we can use the white finger. Multiply this by each of the fingers and the palm on the diagram, many of which are complementary, and you get an idea of the many applications we can draw into a lesson.
It’s a ‘Trojan Horse’ approach to ministry because it’s a concept that will be accepted by any visiting group, but the heart of the gospel message lies within R1202, bursting to get out. Queensland Baptists will host nearly 40,000 guests this year via QCCC’s camping ministry. For many of these guests our staff might be the only Jesus they see and the only bible they read. I’ll conclude with this email recently sent to staff at our Brookfield site: ‘We always have such a great final camp at your facility and it is so good to be somewhere with our own ethos. Thank you so much for all that you do to accommodate us and make it so enjoyable. I thought you might be interested to know that this year we had 10 students step up after the speaker challenged them, specifically to be bolder and stronger for God in the next phase of their lives. In 2009, eight students made first time or re-commitments. Even though our students are challenged all through their school life, we are always gravely concerned about those who might slip through without committing their lives to God. It is so rewarding to see God working right up to the 11th hour with our precious kids like this! So thank you for the use of your facility in helping this to happen.’ It is our hope prayer that R1202 will better equip us, and empower our guests. Please join us in our prayers for the success and growth of Queensland Baptist camping in our State. Andrew Grant email@example.com Director of Camping for Queensland Conference and Camping Centres, a ministry of Queensland Baptists. QCCC’s blog can be found at www.thegreatbanquet.com
www.qb.com.au April 2011
Washing and guilt... My girlfriends and I were recently talking about motherhood and all that it means to us: the highs (successfully getting your kids to school in the vicinity of start time each day); the lows (being one of those awful mothers who avoid tuckshop duty like it’s the plague) and the unexpected feelings that come with being a mum. I found a similar theme ran through all of our thoughts: we all feel like we’re never doing enough; never getting it right; never quite reaching that ‘Carol Brady’ standard. One of the girls summed up her frustration with a great quote: ‘Washing and guilt. That’s what motherhood is all about.’ I laughed outwardly because it was funny, but I sighed inwardly because it feels true. The washing will never go away. It is never finished and never fully dealt with. It simply comes with the territory of being a mother and we more or less go into motherhood expecting it to pile up. The guilt we feel however - that is unexpected. Who knew you could feel guilty for not making the perfect shade of blue cupcakes for the school fete? Or feel guilty for not quite being able to get ‘perfect hair’ for a ballet concert? Or feel guilty for telling your kids ‘no’, ‘not now’, ‘later’, ‘maybe’ and ‘ask your father’? And just like the washing, our guilt seems to be never finished and never fully dealt with and continually piling up.
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
The answer to the problem of washing and guilt lies in one or two things. Either we all need to get an ‘Alice’ to help us out (mostly with the washing that is) or we need to embrace the freedom that comes from being in relationship with Jesus. Galatians 5:1 says, ‘It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery’. When we feel guilty, in many ways we’re allowing ourselves to be burdened by the law. Not necessarily the law of God, but the law we impose on ourselves. We feel we need to create our own set of rules, guidelines and standards to meet in order to reach the goal of being a good mother. Rather than bringing life and light, these self-imposed laws bring about feelings that take away life. The freedom we have in Christ is both something that was accomplished for us when we first accepted him as our Lord and Saviour and a goal we need to keep striving towards as we seek to know him more and allow ourselves to be loved by him. So while the washing may never go away (unless God answers my prayers for an ‘Alice’), the guilt can. And the answer lies in faith in Christ. ‘So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed’ (John 8:36). At She is... conferences and camps in 2011 we will uncover more of the freedom we have in Christ. We will unpack, and perhaps rediscover, what it means to live in freedom...No more guilt; no more baggage; no more shame. Sue Peters, firstname.lastname@example.org is the State Director for Queensland Baptist Women http://qbwm.wordpress.com/
Personal revolution First, women need to establish a strong sense of identity in Jesus: build the unshakable conviction that each woman knows to her core, that she is a significant part of the Kingdom. Each woman is valuable, has gifts that are essential and is fearfully and wonderfully made in the very image of God. Each woman can unleash a confidence that comes from knowing she is empowered by the limitless power of the Holy Spirit.
Dangerous Daughters Elissa Macpherson, speaker at She is… 2010 returns to speak at this year’s events. In this article she explores what it means to be a ‘dangerous daughter’. ‘I don’t know what my purpose is! I want to serve God but I don’t know what it is I am meant to do!’ This was a sincere and urgent desire expressed by an amazing young woman over lunch. I had only met her that day but the gifting over her life was obvious and beautiful. I replied, ‘Well, you are so wise, you’re smart, a woman of discernment’. Her friends agreed. But I was gutted by her response. ‘That’s not what my husband has told me for the last five years.’ God had opened the door of her cage but a lie tamed her soul from flying out into the wide open spaces of God’s kingdom. This story is repeated in conversations over cups of coffee between women all over Queensland. This story should not be repeated. Instead, women were designed to repeat, ‘I am free’ with an unrestrained shout of passion: a shout that declares a revolution over her heart; a shout so loud that evil is intimidated. The kind of shout that declares I will lose everything to gain Christ. Women overthrowing the tyranny of sin and shame, breaking out of captivity and establishing the Kingdom of God with confidence, vigour and vision. This woman is a dangerous daughter; a threat to the kingdom of darkness. As I prepare the messages for this year’s She is… events, a three pronged strategy has emerged to raise a battalion of dangerous daughters, fighting to advance the Kingdom of God.
Second, we desire for each woman to discover her personal passion, to hear the call on her life. Recently I heard a woman speak as an advocate for Destiny Rescue, an awesome organisation that rescues and restores child sex slaves. She spoke with unedited emotion and desperate passion. She had visited the brothels and was forever changed. She had to get back on the plane to Australia knowing that some of these little girls were literally in cages. The pain of these girls was tattooed on her heart. Indifference and inaction was no longer an option. The cries for freedom drowned out any voices in her head that said she was not enough. Her conviction was so strong that she was willing to sacrifice and defy the lies; to be the difference in the lives of these children. Cultural revolution Next, we need to enlarge our perception of femininity. We need to challenge ideas about how a woman should behave and the limitations that come with that. We need to learn from fierce women like Jael (Judges 4:17-22). Her only job seemed to be providing food and a clean bed. She was a woman who was dangerously underestimated, because she was a woman. This was a woman not afraid to smack a tent peg through her enemy’s head. We need to present models of women who served God with aggression, leadership, outspokenness, strength and ingenuity. Our fourth attack is on conformity. We are called not to conform to the standards of this world. Revolutionaries reject both the sexual commodity model of ‘Lady-goo-goo-ga-ga’ and the ‘mother-madonna-domestic-goddess’ prototypes. But neither do dangerous daughters conform to plastic icons of religious womanhood. The woman of God doesn’t need a spiritual finishing school churning out passive church woman clones. She needs to know how to wield the sword of truth. She needs to be equipped to take to the battlefields of hell, knowing suffering and sacrifice is a part of the deal. Spiritual revolution Finally, dangerous daughters overthrow false understandings of God. We live in a time of subjective truth; a time that accepts constructed reality as truth. We live in a time that rejects the premise that we are made in the image of God. Instead, gods are made in our own image. We create a god to reflect our
www.qb.com.au April 2011
Last year Baptist World Aid Australia responded to emergency situations in Pakistan, Haiti, Indonesia, Bangladesh and India.
Help us save lives again this year. Give to the Emergency Relief Fund and help Baptist World Aid Australia provide immediate assistance to those affected by disasters. Call 1300 789 991 or visit www.shareanopportunity.org today.
values, our perceptions, our prejudices and our experiences. We construct a god that serves us. This is the god of our psyches; Oprah style. These are tame gods, a domesticated construct we keep on a leash. This god keeps us comfortable and in control. In our churches we sing that we want to be touched by Jesus, but would we panic if he actually answered our prayer? For the one true God is a consuming fire; the wild Lion of Judah; he is a mighty warrior. He controls galaxies with his finger. Encounters with the one true God are exhilaratingly dangerous. God overturns our delusions that we are in control; our foolish demands that God answers to us. When we begin to grasp the might and majesty of God, we develop a fearless faith. We find a freedom in relinquishing everything so that, in God, we may gain everything.
She is... Conference Date Claimer
There is no greater revolutionary for the Kingdom of God than the one who has nothing to lose because she has already surrendered it all. A dangerous daughter knows who she is in Christ; she has answered the call on her life with conviction. She rejects the limits imposed by the standards of the world. She can stand boldly and repeat, ‘I am free’!
Central Coast conference (Hervey Bay) 18 June Far North Qld conference (Cairns) 8 July Sunshine Coast camp (Mapleton) 5-7 August Brisbane conference (Gaythorne) 20 August Central Qld camp (Yepoon) 9-11 September North Qld conference (Townsville) 1 October
Elissa Macpherson www.lavishpursuits.com.au Elissa will be speaking on ‘Raising Dangerous Daughters’ at the Bella tent at Easterfest on Good Friday.
For more information or to register please go to www.sheis.net.au
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
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Imitating Jesus series
2. We desire:
To pray as Jesus prayed One of the verses which has profoundly challenged my life is recorded in Acts 6:4. It points to the two great priorities of the apostles’ ministry; ‘and we will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word’. I thank God for this deeply embedded value in our movement as Queensland Baptists, which lifts high the priority of the word of God in our preaching, teaching and personal lives. I thank God for the continued emphasis on excellent biblical training in our colleges so we remain churches committed to the Word of God. But it was not just the Word the apostles made a priority; it was also prayer. In fact, of these two key responsibilities, prayer is mentioned first. This, I believe, is the greatest challenge for me personally and in the churches where we worship and serve: to keep prayer, along with the Word, our central focus. It is not difficult to see why the apostles placed such a high priority on prayer. Its significance in the life and ministry of Jesus is profound. When you read the gospels you find Jesus engaging in a life of continual prayer. Survey some of the accounts which specifically mention Jesus praying, or listen to what Jesus said about prayer, and you can be in no doubt about how important it is for us (as it was for the apostles) to engage in prayer as our first priority. Luke records in his gospel that it was as Jesus ‘was praying’, he was transfigured and then spoke to Moses and Elijah about what lay ahead in his journey (Luke 9:29-31). It’s in the place of prayer where we are able to look at our world and look at the purpose of our lives from heaven’s perspective. God is sovereign and nothing can stop his plans unfolding. As we pray, the realities of the spiritual world come into proper focus and we are assured of the supremacy and love of our heavenly Father. Luke also makes clear that when Jesus chose the twelve disciples, he had spent the previous night praying to God (Luke 6:12). It’s in the place of prayer that the Holy Spirit communicates the mind and will of God the Father. We see this same link in the early church, where as the leaders at Antioch 24
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
worshipped and fasted, they were told by the Holy Spirit to set apart Barnabas and Saul for missionary service (Acts 13:1-3). Godly decisions and choices are always preceded by prayer. In the gospel of Mark, we are told of the occasion when Jesus’ disciples failed to drive out an evil spirit. In reply to the question concerning their lack of success, Jesus answered, ‘This kind can come out only by prayer’ (Mark 9:29). Jesus knew that if we neglect prayer and rely on ministry techniques or human capabilities, then we will be rendered ineffective in the spiritual battle. As we pray, the fullness of God’s power to liberate and heal is displayed. And in the most significant of all Jesus’ prayer experiences, as the cross loomed large, we read of Jesus going to the place of prayer. In the garden of Gethsemane, as Jesus contemplated the suffering which lay before him, he chose to submit his will to that of his Father’s. The intensity of the spiritual battle was so great, it called for the strengthening presence of an angel (Luke 22:42-43). Prayer is the place where we are strengthened in times of great suffering and sacrifice, to choose God’s will and not our own. The same apostles, who had once slept while Jesus prayed, now knew that they must pray as Jesus prayed...and so must we. It’s in prayer that we discover the confidence and hope of heaven’s perspective, are able to discern the leading of the Holy Spirit, are granted divine resources to powerfully minister and find the grace and strength to obey and overcome. If that’s what results as we pray, then who wouldn’t want to pray, ‘Help me Lord to pray as you prayed’? Peter Sweetman Bridgeman Baptist
Imitating Jesus series
3. We desire:
To love as Jesus loved I wonder if the disciples whispered among themselves as they saw Jesus rise from the table and put a towel around his waist as if he were a lowly servant. Is he really filling a basin with water? Whatever is he thinking? We know what he was thinking. We read it in John 13:1 ‘.... Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.’ He’d loved them, but the full extent of his love was about to be shown. They would see him lay down his life, so that they, (and we), could be made clean and be welcomed into a relationship with his Father. So, with that coming, how can he model it now? How can he show in practical and memorable terms something that expresses his kind of love? The teaching session that follows doesn’t start with words. He rises from the table and approaches each of his fellow travellers as a servant would. Washing feet wasn’t a ceremonial ritual. It was a practical necessity for people who wore sandals on dusty, muddy roads. It was a role reserved for the lowest of all servants because it would inevitably be messy and unpleasant. At the same time, it was an essential service as a welcome into a family home. Now, Jesus takes this lowly role. He washes the collected soil of the day’s walk from the feet of his companions. One by one, he stoops and washes – friends, as well as the one who would betray him - welcoming each one toward the full extent of his love that would make a way into his Father’s family. The disciples are still smarting from having been caught out arguing over who among them was the greatest. At the time, Jesus had cut into their discussion to explain that the journey to greatness starts in the lowest places. Now he, the greatest One, becomes the lowest, to show his fellow travellers a way to show his love. ‘Do you understand what I have done for you?’ he asked them.
worsh ip serve love se think talk pray think ta rve think talk lk go w go go wors love o pray lo ve serv rship pray lov w o rship p hip pray e th e worship ray lo serve pray lo ink talk go w th ink talk ve serve v orship talk go go wo pray lo worship e serve think rsh ve talk go p think ta worship serve think ta ip lk go w ray love serve lk go orship p th ra serve th in y k lo ta pray lo ve serv lk go w in e think orship pray lo k talk go wors ve serve thin pray lo ve s k talk g hip pra ve serv o wo y lo worship erve think talk e go wors ve serve think rship pray lov pray lo v e hip pra ta e serve think ta lk g o y love s worship lk go w think ta erve th ors lk pray lo ink talk ve serv hip pray love go worship p go ra e thin serv y lo talk go worship k talk go wors e think talk g ve serve o h pray lo pray lov ve serv ip pray love s worship e se erve th e think think ta rve think talk ink talk go go w lk g go wo o worship pra orship pray lo worship rship p v y e serve love se ray lo rve worship pray w ve serve thin think talk k talk orship think ta g pray lo lk go ve serv o worship serve e think ta pray lo ve lk go pray lo worship ve se go w rve think talk orship pray love serve t h i n k
Maybe they just stared in response, or shook their heads, or nodded. Tell us Jesus, what do you want us to understand? ‘Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example...’ (John 13:14,15). He points at his example: Showing love by meeting real needs, in practical ways. This was how he focused the spotlight toward the love that would lead him to the Cross, and welcome us into life. Now it comes back to me. I’m left to grapple with questions that this raises: • How can I welcome fellow travellers in life, so that they’re left with a taste of God’s desire to welcome them into relationship with him? • How far will I go to find a practical way to show a fellow traveller that they are a loved and valued individual? The final word belongs to Jesus: ‘...you should do as I have done for you’ (John 13:15). Helen Bates x Gateway Baptist www.qb.com.au April 2011
Calam for leaders of the many ethnic churches that are now part of Queensland Baptists. ‘CALAM is not a college located in one place. It is a more like a network of centres located in local church facilities throughout our state,’ Rod commented. However, Global Discipleship Training is one course that is delivered in a particular location, and in partnership with Global Interaction and other mission agencies will be conducted in Townsville from July to November. This excellent training in cross-cultural ministry leads to a nationally recognised fasttrack Certificate IV in Community Services Work that includes an eight week placement overseas in countries like Cambodia and Thailand. Applications are still being accepted for 2011.
More training opportunities now available Recent developments have positioned CALAM Training to offer ministry-based training to more people in churches than ever before. CALAM, the ‘TAFE-level’ college of Queensland Baptists, can now provide a suite of qualifications from Certificate III to Vocational Graduate Diploma in its core offering of Christian Ministry and Theology. In December, the Australian government approved CALAM Training as a VET FEE-HELP provider, enabling students in Diploma qualifications and above to be eligible for long-term loans to assist in payment for training. This assistance is available for part-time and distance students as well as fulltime. As many as 400 students participate in courses offered by CALAM each year, and the majority of these are part-time. Many of these students are active in lay ministry in local churches, upskilling in youth work, children’s work, men’s and women’s ministry, community work, prayer ministry, TESOL, and crosscultural ministry. The Director of CALAM Training, Rev Rod Bullpitt, stated that he had been strategically relocated to Brisbane to further expand the CALAM network in South East Queensland. Currently, Cleveland and Stafford Heights churches hold weekly classes, and other churches are exploring ways to commence CALAM centres. In July, Rev Emile Rahimov (Ethnic and Multicultural Ministries) will launch an exciting new initiative - culturally appropriate training
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
It may surprise some to know that the new Certificate IV in Training and Assessment (TAE40110) is offered by CALAM Training. This course is the basic and generic qualification required for vocational trainers in most industries in Australia, and can be achieved in the context of suitable local church involvement. Competent and effective discipleship in our congregations is sure to increase as more and more churches explore and utilise these opportunities that are now available through CALAM.
TESOL Training Centre, Windsor Road Baptist Church, Red Hill, Brisbane e:email@example.com
• 0438 273 954 / 3311 5595 •
TESOL Training Centre, Windsor Road Baptist Church, Red Hill, Brisbane e:firstname.lastname@example.org
• 0438 / i3311 T E S 273 O L 954 Tra n i n g5595 C e•n t r e , W i n d s o r R o a d B a p t i s t C h u r c h , R e d H i l l , B r i s b a n e e:email@example.com
• 0438 273 954 / 3311 5595 •
TESOL Training TESOL Course: Certificate IV in Teaching Conversational English (30664 QLD) Brought to you by: Intercultural Training Associates RTO: CALAM Training Prov. No. 30002 • • • •
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QLD Courses 2011 Semester 1 Brisbane Night Course (20 weeks) Course 1: 22 February - 28 June Day courses (7 weeks) Course 1: 24 January - 12 March Course 2: 28 March -14 May Course 3: 30 May - 16 July Townsville Course 1: Week 1: 1-5 March Week 2: 12 – 16 April Week 3: 21 – 25 June
TESOL Training Centre, Windsor Road Baptist Church, Red Hill, Brisbane P 3311 5595 firstname.lastname@example.org www.interculturaltraining.com.au
Commissioned to go I heard her tell how she’d met a woman who was badly abused and disempowered. She had listened. Somehow that had helped. I knew she cared. The glistening tears rolling down her cheeks, her faltering voice, displayed her heart – a heart from Jesus himself, I reckon. Melody awaits a visa. I think of others whose heart I’ve seen during the last year. This couple with their small son Maz, Ezzie and baby Puia had left their country and come to Australia - but not permanently. They learned lots about Aussies. I noticed that many in Queensland Churches have warmed to them. And more than this, they have wanted to identify with them and join their team. Now they have gone. However, ‘gone’ doesn’t convey the story. Rather, we have sent them; we have commissioned them to go. Maz and Ezzie and Puia left mid-March – all destined for South East Asia. These are the latest of the Global Interaction team. Maz and Ezzie’s partnership team has a few places available. You could still join. Will you pray for them and for more to go to convey the good news of Jesus? A movement of God is taking place among Baptist Churches in Western Australia with many people offering for cross-cultural work. May God do similarly among us so that more people will join the team.
Geoff Cramb State Director, Queensland
What are the things that are really important in life? As a parent I am always seeing things that my children should be doing. Make your bed. Do the washin’ up. Pick up your clothes. But are these things that are really important? I talked to a friend the other day who was disappointed that their children were not achieving the goals that they thought were reasonable, if not minimal. They were instead pursuing ‘silly young people things’. Travel, experience and time off seemed to be so much more important than study and work. But again, what is really important? Through the month of March we ran three events for young adults called ‘Unearthed’. They looked at world issues and how they relate to our lives here in Australia. The topics discussed were Contextualisation, Islam and Short Term Mission. Dave Tidey Young Adults Consultant, Queensland
www.qb.com.au April 2011
Roshy ready to sell her muffins.
Reflections on recent events The past weeks have been enormously challenging for many people around Queensland and in the south. We’ve witnessed outstanding acts of bravery as floodwaters rose and cyclones raged. And in the midst of all the suffering and loss that followed, we’ve seen care and compassion shown, neighbour to neighbour, and the amazing kindness of strangers like those who arrived ‘out of the blue’, worked tirelessly, then left without fanfare, to help elsewhere. And there are those who gave (and continue to give) in a myriad of other ways. It has been stunning... and often those needing help have been left speechless…but utterly grateful. We’ve heard many stories since that demonstrate, not only the amazing capacity of people to care for each other, but also the extraordinary care of our loving God.
John Angel wrote to advise that Colac Baptist Church, Victoria had donated to the QB Flood Appeal. Part of the donation came from his delightful granddaughter, Roisbheinn, who lives in Scotland. Roshy is in Year Two. When she heard about the floods, she decided to raise some money to help. Her headmistress gave her permission to sell muffins at school and with her mother’s help, Roshy cooked 63 muffins and sold them at 50p (approx. $1) each. Her mother added to this marvellous effort and her donation was $104. Thank you Roshy! Alan Grieve (Stafford Heights Baptist) said that God did some great things during the Brisbane Floods cleanup and the SHBC team were in awe of His provision, even when they didn’t have time to pray! Alan writes: ‘I was reminded of the Bible account of Jesus multiplying the loaves and fishes. ‘Our catering trailer usually includes a small barbecue used to cook onions and free the main hot plate to cook meat. It was not with us at Milton. By mid-morning we were catering for many hundreds of people and beginning to run behind. I said to one of our men, ‘Do we need to go back and get the extra barbecue?’ A woman who arrived an esky full of meat said, ‘I was going to put on a barbecue but there’s no point us both doing it, so do you want my meat?’ This kind woman also provided her barbecue and spent the rest of the day cooking onions! ‘A man drove some distance with a full load of meat and fruit. He gave us: boxes of water melons which we cut up and
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distributed; bags of vegetables which we gave to families in the area; rolls of toilet paper that we donated to the kind family who gave us access to their toilet and a couple of gas bottles which we swapped for our empties. ‘Many complete strangers arrived with sandwiches, cakes, scones, servings of fried rice, bottles of water – most of these donations came from folk all around Brisbane who had simply cooked up something and driven to the flood affected areas not knowing how they were going to distribute their donations. ‘Late one afternoon a BIG Ford 250 ute pulled up beside us, loaded with bottled water. They donated over 200 bottles!! ‘Several times we sent someone out to buy more meat, onions, eggs, and people arrived to donate these items to us! Several times we had to phone our shoppers and say, ‘Don’t worry about buying anything. What we need has just been given to us!’ Over
the four days we served, we ALWAYS finished the day with more food than when we started!’ Janette McConaghy adds: ‘We returned home each day tired and dirty but so humbled by people’s generosity as we all worked for the common cause of providing basic food and showing care and love to those who were suffering so much. What a privilege!’ Many people from Tent Hill Baptist Church in the heart of the Lockyer Valley were involved in relief operations in Grantham and Gatton where they: helped at the Flood Crisis Centres caring for people’s physical needs and helping to catalogue donations of goods; provided morning teas; helped in the Community Kitchen at Grantham; distributed meals to those affected (volunteers, SES and others); donated patchwork quilts to children and families in the Grantham area.
Work parties from Cairns Baptist travelled to Tully after Cyclone Yasi.
The trauma suffered by people living in nearby Mt Sylvia, Junction View, Black Duck and Left Hand Branch areas went mostly unreported. These rural areas were isolated by the first flooding (27 December) and left with impassable roads and no phones. More devastation followed in the second flooding (10 January) and some residents had to be evacuated by helicopter.
energy. Something very significant had obviously happened. Vin explained that he was due to appear in court on 11 January but because of the floods, the prison was cut off from the rest of the world. Not being able to get to court, Vin decided to watch television. On that day there was little else to watch apart from the visual images of the floods.
Recently the church packed hampers with goods sourced from the Flood Relief Centre in Gatton. They baked biscuits, gathered fruit and vegetables and toys for children. Tucked in each box was a special note of encouragement that God knows our hurts, information about the church and a form to access financial help for rural families. These were delivered to a community that had felt forgotten. Access was still only by 4WD. The families were so appreciative and we believe they were touched with Christian love.
As Vin saw the images of people’s property and lives being destroyed, he was suddenly confronted with the relative triviality of his own situation. He thought, ‘How can I be so concerned about a couple of years in jail when there are people who have lost everything? How can I contemplate taking my own life when so many others have lost their lives unwillingly?’
At the end of last year, a prison chaplain from Inside/Out Chaplaincy had his first encounter with a young Asian prisoner called Vin*. Vin was near the end of a two-year sentence for drug-related offences, but was facing further charges that could result in another two-years behind bars.
God was clearly at work in this young man’s life and he responded. He asked if he could get a Bible in his own language and said that he had been in contact with his Christian mother. It seemed clear to the chaplain that Vin’s life had been changed… from the inside, out! As disastrous as the January floods have been, at least one life has been saved by those floods!
He told the chaplain that if he was convicted on these new charges he was going to ‘top himself’. The chaplain spent the next hour talking with him about the value of life and the alternatives to taking such drastic action. Vin revealed several other problems. Here was a young man struggling to be loved; a young man disowned by his father. It seemed that the only real love he had known came from his mother, an active Christian. Vin settled down during the discussion and took a more realistic view of the situation. They agreed to meet again two weeks later. When the chaplain returned, Vin was a new man. He had a broad smile on his face and was bouncing around, full of *name changed
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
Providing Christ like care for grieving families Personalised care & support Pre-paid Funeral Planning
We have a voice! Politics: from the Latin root word ‘Polis’ meaning a structured social body Parliamentarians are currently seeking YOUR views on a proposal to change the Marriage Act to include same-sex marriage. Despite the presumptive rhetoric often employed, this change in legislation is not inevitable. Same-sex marriage is not about extending the existing concept of marriage to a group previously banned from marrying. Same-sex marriage is about changing the definition of marriage. Why marriage is so important • Marriage is more than the coupling of two adults; it is the basis of family life and communities • The interests and welfare of children are at the centre of the marriage debate. Same-sex marriage legitimises same-sex parenting. Children will no longer have an assumed right to begin life and be raised by a mother and a father. • Marriage provides stable and secure homes for children, headed by male and female role models in a committed relationship • The union of man and woman is an objective natural reality reflecting the biological and complementary nature of motherhood and fatherhood. The consequences of homosexual marriage • Legal recognition of same-sex relationships would make it increasingly difficult for Christians and church organisations
to act according to their consciences in regard to marriage ceremonies, the education of our children and in the pulpit • Religious organisations would face pressure to have their exemptions in anti-discrimination law removed; losing the ability to employ staff whose lifestyle matches their ethos • Polygamy is a possible consequence – the proposed legislation removes ‘to the exclusion of all others’. MAN+WIFE4LIFE The invitation to express your views on this issue presents an opportunity to establish the unity and strength of the Christian concern. We need to act quickly. It’s easy to contact your politicians. Visit www.makeastand.org.au to email your federal MP and Senators and to sign the electronic petition. Information from Australian Christian Lobby Queensland Office email@example.com Wendy Francis Queensland Director Australian Christian Lobby acl.org.au ‘You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot’ (Matthew 5:13).
www.qb.com.au April 2011
Life Lessons It is not the act of a moment but the course of a life that most pleases or displeases God.
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
Comparatively little is written about the histories recorded in the books of Kings and Chronicles. However, they provide a wealth of spiritual teaching. In Charles Spurgeon’s opinion, ‘They supply us with warnings and examples in the realm of practical morals; and hidden within their letter, like pearls in oyster shells, lie great spiritual truths couched in allegory and metaphor’.
Joshua, and even farther back to the times of the Patriarchs and Noah. Even if he didn’t have these great examples to follow, he was subject to the imperative of God’s inviolable law: ‘You will not make for yourself any graven image or any likeness of anything in heaven above and the earth below. You will not bow down to them or worship them’ (Exodus 20:4-5).
Among the great kings of Israel, Asa stands as an enigma. His earlier life provides a shining example for us to follow, but his behaviour during his final years represents a strange deviation from that of his former days and teaches us what we should strive to avoid.
We are told, however, that there were limitations to Asa’s reforms. He failed to remove the so-called ‘high places’ (1 Kings 15:14). In the book of Chronicles, the apparently contradictory statement is made that Asa ‘took away the high altars of the strange gods, and the high places, and broke down the images and cut down the groves’ (2 Chronicles 14:3). However, no real contradiction exists here since it seems clear that he removed and destroyed the high places dedicated to false gods, but those high places wrongly set aside to worship the true God – places such as Bethel where God was worshipped using images of oxen – he allowed to remain. Because God had restricted His worship to the Temple, Asa should have removed these high places as well, as Hezekiah and Josiah did at a later time.
Let’s consider his earlier life. Asa did not have the benefit of godly parents to guide him. His father, Abijah, was a wicked king who followed in the sinful steps of his own father Rehoboam (1 Kings 15:3). And Maacah, Asa’s mother,1 vigorously promoted idolatry in the land (1 Kings 15:13). Thus, those who were closest to young Asa and who exerted the strongest influence on him were both wicked in God’s sight. Yet, despite this lack of godly influence, when Asa came to the throne he determined, from the beginning, to serve and honour God.As soon as he was installed as king, he began to reform the nation and to establish a pure worship of God in the land. He destroyed the images of Baal and all relics of idolatry in Jerusalem and throughout his kingdom. Asa deposed his mother from her position of authority. Using her strong influence in the country she had fostered idolatry. Though he was her son, Asa, as king, was ultimately responsible to God for idolatry in the land. His respect for his mother was tempered by his reverence for his Creator. No doubt Asa tried to make his mother see the evil of her ways, but when she refused to forsake her idols he removed her from her position. What pain it must have caused him to take this enormous step when he had been taught at her feet! Yet what a noble and godly thing he did in order to maintain the pure worship of God! No doubt, Asa was vehemently criticised for eradicating idolatry which had been entrenched over generations. People would have said: ‘This was the religion of your father Abijam, your mother Maacah, your grandfather Rehoboam, and of your great-grandfather Solomon in his last days! Why are you turning away from it and destroying all they’ve worked for? Why are you dishonouring your family?’ But Asa looked to the pure religion of David and Samuel, to that of Moses and
Yet though Asa failed in this one area and secured an incomplete reformation, this is not held against him. The sacred records state, ‘Although he did not remove the high places, Asa’s heart was fully committed to the Lord all his life’ (1Kings 15:14). Sinful tendencies and infirmities coexist with uprightness, but God overlooks minor faults when he observes that the trend of a life is directed towards him. It is not the act of a moment but the course of a life that most pleases or displeases God. David is an outstanding example of this truth. He sinned grievously but because he sought to please God throughout the remainder of his life, the judgment made of him was that he was ‘a man after God’s own heart’ (Acts 13:22). So, though we fail every day, we ought to confess our sins, accept the forgiveness offered (1John 1:9), and strive to ensure that the focus of our lives and affections is on God. If we do this, he will forgive our many failings and place a high value on our sincere devotion to him. We could do far worse than emulate Asa’s noble earlier intentions and strivings and at the end receive the commendation that, like Asa’s, our hearts were fully committed to the Lord all our lives. Jim Greenbury firstname.lastname@example.org
1 In 1 Kings 15:10, 13 and 2 Chron. 15:16 most translations state that Maacah was Asa’s mother. However, the Hebrew word could also mean ‘grandmother’ and some translations reflect this. If Maacah was his grandmother, she would still have exercised a deep influence on Asa.
www.qb.com.au April 2011
The change process (Part Two) Change is not a linear process. As I have been reflecting on the nature of change, this concept is one which has resonated with me time and again. When we engage in any aspect of personal growth we often feel impatient for change to occur. This is particularly so if we already have a clear idea of what we wish to change. We can know that our current circumstances are unhelpful, unproductive or unhappy and can visualize the changes we need to make. And yet, at times our efforts appear fruitless. We know we need to change, we can almost see clearly what needs to change and yet we remain stuck. What does this say to us about the nature of change? Two therapeutic conversations resonate with me. Firstly, I recall working with a lovely lady who attended therapy to address significant weight issues. She had attended many therapists to help her lose weight, but to no avail. Almost with a sense of resignation, she commenced therapy with me, but with an air of hopelessness. She knew she needed to lose weight but it seemed impossible, despite her best efforts. For many others looking at her situation it might have seemed simple enough. A few diets here, daily exercise, calorie reduction - and it would happen, wouldn’t it? And yet…she had done all that and to no avail. What was holding her back? A lot. Her weight was not a simple physical issue; it was deeply embedded in a history of sexual abuse, a sense of self that was painfully wounded and overwhelmed with shame and a tremendous fear of getting close to others. Until these issues could be gently acknowledged and worked through, was it any wonder that diet and gastric surgery she tried would be doomed to fail? Her change process wasn’t as simple as getting from 34
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A to B; there would be many steps and detours along the way. And yet, change can sneak up on us and we can find that despite our least efforts, even our resistances, we arrive at a destination quite different from where we began. A delightful young woman I was working with highlighted this for me. She had spent many years entrapped by the same dysfunctional relationship patterns: forever seeking intimacy with emotionally unavailable and often abusive men felt safe and comfortable. It provided a sense of home, such was its familiarity. She saw no real need for it to change and had no sense of how she would like it to be any different. Yet one day, something was dramatically altered for this woman. Those men were suddenly no longer attractive to her. When we explored what had precipitated such a radical change, she offered a very valuable insight. She said, ‘I realised it was no longer an option not to change’. Something had been subtly and slowly transforming in her. In the smallest of incremental steps and often unconsciously she had been slowly re-evaluating her needs, her values and her sense of self in relation to others. Almost without effort she arrived at a place where to continue choosing the same patterns and dysfunctions was no longer an option. These two conversations always remind me that any change is a process. It’s usually not as simple as just waking up one day and saying ‘I will be different from today’. It can mean there will be many setbacks. There will be detours along the way. And yet the wonder is that it can suddenly occur. We may feel we will never be able to get on top of a painful, dysfunctional habit and then one day it is just suddenly easier because of the very small steps we have been making along the way. If you are struggling in your own therapeutic journey, perhaps these two conversations may give you peace and a renewed hope that change can be possible, even in the most difficult of circumstances. Leisa Tanner is a Social Worker in private practice www.integrateplace.com.au
Ask the right person! There are at least two mistakes I can make about the notion of being ‘born again’. The first is to think that it’s just an internal transaction between God and myself with no outward implications or manifestations. I’ve written before about a conversation about faith between an Amish bishop and an Evangelical pastor. The pastor asked the bishop, ‘What I really want to know is, are you saved, truly born again through a personal faith in Christ?’
Being a good evangelical, I was first taken aback by the use of the plural ‘conversions’, but as I read his story it became clear that there were several moments in Dom Helder’s life when all that he had done before and all that he had believed before were thrown up in the air for review and revision, as he was forced – sometimes by circumstance and sometimes by choice – to make a fresh response to the call of God upon his life. I think that’s true of all of us who seek to follow Jesus seriously.
The bishop responded, ‘You are asking the wrong person. You do not ask that question of me. You ask my neighbours, you ask my people. Here, I will give you the names of people who have known me for years, of those who have been critical of me, or have real differences with me. Ask them. That is who you must ask if you want an answer to that question.’
Alan Jones, an Episcopalian Archbishop from San Francisco, wrote many helpful books about the spiritual life. In one of them he wrote:
If there is no visible evidence of the new birth in the way we live and behave, our relatives and neighbours could be justified in wondering whether or not it has actually happened.
• Stories have to be questioned and reviewed all the time because of the possibility of error • The imagination has to be reawakened to open the soul up to new possibilities • What little freedom we have in choosing one path over another is the thing that makes us human.’
The other mistake I can think of is thinking that the work of regeneration is a once-and-for-all event. Dom Helder Camara was a pocket-sized dynamo who served the people of Recife, Brazil, as their bishop. He’s one of my heroes of the faith. He was nominated twice for the Nobel Peace Prize and was under constant threat from the rich and powerful people in church and society whose vested interests he challenged through his ministry to the poor. His famous statement about his critics goes something like, ‘When I feed the poor they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor are poor they call me a communist.’ He once did a series of interviews that were turned into a memoir of sorts entitled ‘The Conversions of a Bishop’.
‘At some moment in the middle of my life, I realised three things about the making of the soul:
As with our natural birth, the new birth marks the beginning of our journey. There’s a lot of growth, change and adjustment to be made along the way. The true saints of God are those who embrace the challenge to change with faith and courage, knowing that there are always new things to learn about God, ourselves, and the part we’re being called to play in God’s mission to love the whole world. Alan Marr Director of Ministries Baptist Union of Victoria
Reprinted with permission, Witness February, 2011
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themselves by their bold devotion to God and love for others. And the most tragic thing of all: the unlimited, unbridled and unrelenting love of God that had once dominated their life began to fade and the revolutionary revelation of God’s unconditional acceptance grew dim. Finally someone suggested that it was time for followers of Jesus to narrow the gap and return to following Jesus more closely. Fortunately for them (and us too) the Bible provided some very clear indications about how to do that: like when the children of Israel spent forty years in the wilderness learning to trust God; and Elijah spent forty days waiting to hear God’s ‘quiet and gentle whisper’ on the same mountain where Moses spent forty days listening as God laid down the law. And of course there’s Luke’s telling about Jesus’ own desert journey where he spent forty days prayerfully pondering what it meant to be Jesus. So the church established a forty-day ‘Outward Bound for the Soul’ so that during Lent we can experience our own wilderness journey and ask one way or another what it means for us to be ourselves. Sometimes when we journey, we wind up on a road that requires us to pay a toll. I believe it’s natural to sometimes view Lenten disciplines (especially when we’ve given something up) as paying a toll or trying to make ourselves more acceptable to God. We might imagine we’re cleaning up our record or putting more points on God’s spiritual scoreboard. But there’s no such thing as a toll road on a spiritual journey. What Jesus has done for us has settled those matters.
Outward bound for the soul Fil Anderson, author of ‘Running on Empty’, and ‘Breaking the rules, trading performance for intimacy with God’ will be guest speaker at QB Convention 2011 (10-13 May). Fil shared his thoughts about Lent in a recent blog.
So if you choose to give up something for Lent or decide to let go of a habit, don’t let the ‘giving up’ be for the purpose of paying a toll that doesn’t exist. The gift God has given us cannot be improved upon or added to. The purpose of the Lenten journey is to help us open more space in our lives to the love and acceptance of God and to help us respond to that love more generously through our compassion for others.
Despite its emphasis on abstinence, the faith tradition I grew up in taught me nothing about Lent. But I won’t be critical or hold anyone in contempt. From what I can gather, the same would’ve been true if I’d grown up in the early church. Apparently the custom of spending forty days in self-denial and repentance in preparation for Easter wasn’t introduced until after the initial surge of Christian adrenalin waned and believers became lackadaisical about their faith.
• Think back over your life, recalling the evidence of God’s love for you. Who are the people who have cherished and cared for you? What specifically did they do that caused you to feel loved? Make a list of the people and circumstances that come to mind. • What events have had special significance in helping you know you are loved? • Give thanks by lifting up to God each person and each event that you listed. Reflect on what God has given to you in Jesus Christ. And again and again give thanks.
Slowly but surely people who’d closely followed Jesus started lagging behind and before long they were blending in with the population at large. Fewer and fewer were distinguishing
Fil Anderson Journey Resources http://www.journeyresources.com/
April 2011 www.qb.com.au
The church is fine! The sign outside Oxford Terrace Baptist Church, Christchurch reads: ‘Our building is cracked, the Church is fine!’ Praise God that is still the case. The sign was erected following the September 2010 earthquake which caused significant damage to the beautiful old building. But nothing like what has happened since. On 26 February, Mike Crudge, Assistance Minister wrote: ‘Our church building has been flattened. We have four pastoral staff and when the earthquake hit we were in the office and lounge block (built in the 1980s) next to, and attached to, the church auditorium (which was built in 1881). It was a terrifying experience. It was very loud as the church collapsed. In the office everything was dropping around us; windows smashing, ceiling falling in. Our receptionist Amanda was at her desk in the area between the church auditorium and the office/lounge block. It’s amazing she got out alive as her desk is now under metres of rubble.
and there are several others situated in the suburbs. Some of them have also been hard hit. We appreciate knowing that we, and all of the people of Christchurch, are in the prayers of others all around the globe.’ And now Japan is facing huge loss of life and property and a rebuilding effort that will take decades. Please continue to pray for those who are suffering.
‘When the quake stopped we rushed outside and you couldn’t see more than a few metres in front of you because of the dust clouding the area. Three of the four pastoral staff and their families are now homeless. It’s unlikely I will be able to enter my house again to recover any possessions. But I am alive! We also run a student flat next to my house for five students and their house is also too damaged to live in. I suspect it will be pulled down. We are organising pastoral care and practical support as well as we can at this time, and this is pretty much limited to our own church community due to our limited resources. This coming Sunday we are meeting in four different homes around the city for morning tea and a catch-up… Oxford Terrace Baptist Church was the oldest Baptist church in Christchurch (1863), www.qb.com.au April 2011
The National Church Life Survey (NCLS) has identified a group in churches that they have named ‘newcomers’. These are people who had been involved in the church for fewer than five years and were not previously attending regularly elsewhere. Newcomer statistics for Queensland Baptist churches and four other crucial qualities of church life are in this table: As a result of these statistics I decided to do some research into how high percentage newcomer churches were able to achieve these vital characteristics. The NCLS wrote to the top 50 churches in Australia in terms of percentages of newcomers on my behalf. From those that responded I chose three churches with over 30% newcomers: a Salvation Army church in western regional Victoria of about 150 members; a Sydney Anglican Church of about 450 members and a Pentecostal church on the Sunshine Coast of about the same size.
I visited each church, interviewed the leaders, held three focus groups (for newcomers, lay leaders and ‘average’ attenders), used a questionnaire and generally observed what was happening in order to better understand the engagement of newcomers. I did all this while looking through the lens of the theological framework I had developed. As suggested by previous research, the key method of engagement into the life of the church was through personal invitation. Church engagement for newcomers was, however, also a supernatural experience. In the post modern era, newcomers are open to experiences which are not necessarily rational. The nature of their experience was often an awareness of the guidance of God in their engagement process and sometimes followed a crisis in their lives. This supernatural awareness especially extended into their perceptions of the preaching. Although they were not seeking any particular
Table 1: Comparison of Denominations and Core Qualities 2006
Australian Salvation Army
Sense of belonging is strong and growing
Leaders encourage gifts and skills to a great extent
Leaders inspire to action
Invited someone to church in the last 12 months
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theological emphasis or doctrine, authoritative and relevant preaching was interpreted by newcomers as the voice of God speaking directly to them. One of the key reasons why newcomers hesitated about coming to church was that they were afraid of the reception they might receive. The fact that newcomers were actually made to feel welcome through a non-judgemental acceptance, friendliness and equality was crucial in their decisions to engage. Hospitality was also an important factor. Reflecting the New Testament use of hospitality in evangelism, newcomers were drawn into the family of the church through sharing meals together. The common meal powerfully expresses acceptance, value and warmth to newcomers and influences their decisions to engage. Previous research has indicated that engagement in church life is usually followed by conversion, rather than conversion leading to church attendance. This was confirmed in my research. As the newcomer experienced the family-like community with all its benefits, he or she decided to embrace both the community and its gospel message.
newcomers. The reality is that many churches are friendly, but that friendship only exists between the existing members and there is little, if any, ‘friendship capacity’ left to embrace newcomers. In contrast, these high percentage newcomer churches are genuinely an open family, not only for themselves, but for newcomers. They are also egalitarian and empowering families where each member is encouraged to contribute to family life. Like many close families, these churches have high expectations of their members. On a superficial level these tasks may seem costly and a deterrent to involvement, but because they are performed in the company of brothers and sisters, and because attenders see how they contribute to the fulfilment of the church vision, the tasks actually give them value and a sense of belonging. Training was also an important feature of these churches. Each had a formal and well promoted series of training events which equipped attenders to learn new skills. The training allowed the attenders to feel empowered to make a meaningful and valued contribution to the church. This costly investment, as well as providing the church with ample resources, built a sense of belonging.
Another factor in the successful engagement of the newcomers Table 1: Comparison of Denominations and Core Qualities 2006 I met was their early involvement in church ministry. This Queensland Australian Australian involvement expressed acceptance and conveyed a sense of The leadership in Pentecostals these high percentage newcomer churches Baptists Salvation Army competence and value to the newcomer which built an early had two dimensions: public and personal. At a public level, the Newcomers 8% 14% 13% and strong sense of belonging. It also generated commitment leaders created the environment for training, empowerment and Sense of belonging is strong and 53% 69% 62% through investment in the organisation and relationships. community whereby newcomers and church attenders could growing feel value and belonging. They also exercised inspirational and Leaders encourage gifts and skills to 22% 40% 29% A crucial aspect of churches that are very good ata great attracting and empowering leadership behaviours. extent retaining newcomers is that they have a strong and growing Leaders inspire to action 72% 86% 75% sense of belonging. I discovered that this sense did not come However, there was also a personal dimension to the leadership. Invited someone to church in the 43% 59% 39% by attachment to buildings or length of tenurelastbut from the The leaders’ influence lay not just in what they did, but who 12 months experience of being accepted and welcomed by a loving family. they were. Their character and example, in itself, was highly Source: NCLS 2006 The language of ‘home’ and ‘family’ echoes the most common inspirational and empowering to regular church attenders Biblical metaphor for church. Just as a family is a place where and engaging for newcomers. Through their authenticity, you feel like you belong because of its clear boundaries, humility and care, these leaders were able to create the highly hospitality and strong relational ties, a church where people functional communities described in the New Testament where feel a strong and growing sense of belonging is merely fulfilling newcomers find acceptance, conversion and family. the New Testament model for church life. Ian Hussey But these churches are ‘open’ families and homes. Many Online Content Developer/Lecturer, Malyon College churches would argue that they are a friendly family. Some Ian.Hussey@malyon.edu.au even use the word ‘family’ in their titles. However, it is only a very small percentage of churches which are able to express If you would like to hear Ian discuss his research, visit http://www.crossoveronline.com.au/thoughtleader/australias-top-three-churches family strongly enough to attract and hold high percentages of
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Please pray AFGHANISTAN - SAID MUSA RELEASED! After months of prayer and advocacy, Afghan convert to Christianity, Said Musa, has been released from prison where he was under threat of execution for apostasy. Said was arrested last May as part of a crackdown on Afghan converts. He was tortured and abused in prison but remained strong in his faith. It is believed that he is now safely out of Afghanistan. However there is still concern for other Afghans in prison for their faith including Shoaib Assadullah, who is also facing possible execution for apostasy. EGYPT - CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY UNDER GROWING THREAT Christians and church leaders have come under attack in Egypt in recent days. On 23 February, church leader, Dawoud Botrous, was found stabbed to death inside his home in Assuit. Concern was raised after he failed to turn up to preach on Sunday 19 February. That same day, Egyptian armed forces stormed the 5th century St Bishoy monastery in Wadi el-Natroun, 110km from Cairo. Eight Christians were wounded and rushed to hospital. Armed forces stormed the main entrance gate using tanks and a bulldozer to demolish a fence erected by the monastery for protection against lawlessness during the civil unrest in January. One of the monks said, ‘The army was shocked to see the monks standing there praying, “Lord have mercy” without running away. This is what really upset them... As the soldiers were demolishing the gate and the fence they were chanting “Allahu Akbar” [the traditional Islamic war cry, meaning “god is great”] and “Victory, Victory”.’ Christians were also targeted as Islamists took advantage of the mayhem and lack of police protection during the chaos
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and civil unrest that brought down the government in January. Two Christian families were massacred in their homes in Minya Province, Upper Egypt. Eleven people, including four children, were killed and four others seriously injured when two Islamist groups – aided by Muslim neighbours – accessed houses owned by Christians. INDONESIA - CHURCHES ATTACKED BY MUSLIM MOB A group of militant Islamists went on a rampage in Indonesia in February demanding the death penalty for a Christian convicted of ‘blaspheming Islam’. The mob set two churches ablaze and damaged a third. Antonius Richmond Bawengan had been found guilty of distributing books and leaflets that allegedly ‘spread hatred about Islam’ in Temanggung, Central Java, and was given the maximum sentence of five years in prison. Around 1,500 Muslims protested outside the courthouse, calling the sentence too lenient and demanding the death penalty. The crowd chanted ‘kill, kill’ as they pelted the building with rocks. The violence then spread to surrounding neighbourhoods, where the mob cried ‘burn, burn’ as they targeted the churches. One minister, who saw his church go up in flames, was beaten by the mob, and at least nine people were rushed to hospital with injuries. The protestors also threw rocks and other missiles at police, attacked a school building, and torched a number of vehicles. The violence came two days after three members of a minority Islamic sect were beaten to death by a Muslim lynch mob, who considered them to be heretics. Both these incidents took place as Indonesia started its ‘interfaith week’, when the country was meant to celebrate its religious diversity.
Source: Barnabas Fund.
When making the ‘right’ decision is not enough! One of the pressures faced by pastors, denominational leaders and local church leadership teams, stems from the need to make decisions which Sir Humphrey of Yes Minister fame could only describe as ‘courageous’. We seek God’s wisdom through prayer, receive advice from experts and carefully weigh up the options. Finally we ‘bite the bullet’ and make the best choice we can under the circumstances. We believe we’ve made the right decision, but is that where our responsibility ends? Making a good decision is necessary but not sufficient, because decisions have consequences. Making a good decision may fulfill the greatest commandment in the law. Loving God ‘with all your heart’ does mean putting God first. But Jesus also said ‘And the second is like it: Love your neighbour as yourself’ (Matthew 22:37-40). Decisions have consequences in the lives of people, and people matter to God. A responsible decision is a wise decision clothed in love and grace. In a fallen world it doesn’t mean that nobody will be hurt. But it does mean that every effort will be made to minimise hurt, and to care for those who are hurting. This care starts in the decision-making process and continues beyond the presentation of the decision. The following questions may provide a useful starting point in this process. Caring for people in the decision making process 1. Have appropriate people been involved in the decision making process? It is vital to include end users in the decision making process. Not only will they provide valuable suggestions, it is more likely that they will own the decision themselves and be less likely to oppose its introduction. 2. Is it possible to conduct a trial before taking a final decision? Sometimes it is possible to trial an innovation. This allows the proposal to be fine tuned and it gives people more time to adjust to change. Those who initially oppose the proposal may be won over when they observe that it can work in practice. 3. Have we sounded out a small representative group regarding this decision? Decision makers cannot necessarily predict the impact of their actions. Men may not know how a particular resolution will affect women. A young pastor may be unaware of the real situation of the elderly. Young people may be adversely affected by a decision made without their input. It may be beneficial to run a decision past a representative group before releasing it publicly.
Caring for people in the presentation of the decision 1. Have we carefully thought through the timing of announcing the decision? It may be that a small number of key players need to hear the decision some time before a public announcement. 2. Have we carefully considered the way we will present this decision? Confidence in the decision making process makes acceptance of the outcome more likely. Outline the steps which were taken to gather information – prayer, seeking advice, Biblical principles etc. People feel affirmed if they know that their personal preference has been carefully considered. Explain the reasons for coming to a final conclusion but acknowledge the difficulty of making this choice. Choose people to present the decision who are respected and have good communication skills. Harmony is best maintained by those skilled in the art of gentle answers. To demonstrate that the decision is a group one, it may help to have several leaders take part in the presentation. Acknowledge the hurt which a decision will cause to some and express genuine regret. Allow time for questions and comments – give people permission to express their feelings. Respect comments and do not retaliate, even if attacked. Caring for people after the decision is presented 1. Have we made a list of those who are likely to feel hurt/grief as a result of this decision? The decision making group will probably be able to come up with many names. The representative group involved in the decision making process may be able to add to the list. If possible make the list up over several days. It is likely that you will add further names as you observe people’s responses to the decision. 2. Have we planned a way of caring for those people who will feel hurt/grief as a result of our decision? Sometimes hurting people need a forum to express their pain and know that they are heard by someone who cares. This may be appropriate in a group or it might need to happen individually. Grieving people need to know that the decision makers regret the hurt their decision has caused. Caring is costly in terms of time and resources, but it is worth it. Rev Ian Kerr Director, Alongside Ministries Inc Caboolture-Pine Rivers Baptist Area Coordinator Lecturer, Malyon College Full article first published by Evangelical Alliance in Working Together, June 2006
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B O O K S . DV D S . M U S I C BOOK: ‘The Grace of God’ Andy Stanley WORD’s Price: $16.95 Perhaps one of the most difficult concepts to grasp as a Christian, and therefore act out in our lives, is the concept of God’s grace to us. Maybe we think we aren’t worthy enough to receive this gift, or perhaps the whole notion of a God being able to forgive us is too much to handle when we can’t forgive ourselves. In his new book, Andy Stanley looks at the topic of grace. Starting with Adam and Eve in the Old Testament and going right through the New Testament, Stanley focusses on a study of the history of grace through the Bible. As you can imagine, when anyone mentions books on grace, one of the first to be mentioned is Philip Yancey’s ‘What’s So Amazing About Grace?’ To anyone who has read what is perhaps Yancey’s bestselling work, and is wondering whether it is worthwhile to read another book on grace, let me make it simple – it is. Stanley’s is a very different book and it is well worth reading to get a broader Biblical overview on grace. ‘…I’m absolutely convinced that the church is most appealing when the message of grace is most apparent. Similarly, the church is most effective when the message of grace is most evident’ (Andy Stanley).
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BOOK: ‘The Land Between: Finding God in Difficult Transitions’ Jeff Manion WORD’s Price: $14.95 Every year Willow Creek Church in America, pastored by well known author Bill Hybels, runs a series of leadership conferences right around the world. Various speakers, both Christian and non-Christian, speak on a range topics centred around leadership. In 2010, one of the speakers who made the greatest impression on those at the conferences was Jeff Manion who used the basis of his book ‘The Land Between’ as the focus of his talk. Using the biblical story of the Israelites’ trek through the desert, Jeff draws parallels between what they experienced and what he calls ‘The Land Between’ – somewhere where life is not as it once was; a place where the future is uncertain. In a world where life can be full of unwanted transitions, this book is a little gem. Sometimes we need to be reminded that we are not alone; sometimes we don’t know how to respond to the circumstances we find ourselves in. It is not the fact that we find ourselves in ‘The Land Between’ that is the problem, says the author; rather how we respond to finding ourselves in this situation can be the difference between a journey that results in deep, lasting growth, or one that proves destructive to the soul.
BOOK: ‘The Case for the Resurrection’ Lee Strobel WORD’s Price: $3.50 Easter can often bring out the sceptics who challenge the death and resurrection of Jesus, but what can you give to someone who might be searching for something more at this time of year? I am often asked by customers for something small and non-threatening that can be given to a person; something that won’t overwhelm or push people away. Perhaps this new title from Lee Strobel is the answer. Strobel comes from a journalistic background, and was (for much of his life) an atheist before his conversion. Having asked the same questions that many others ask, Strobel is able to provide answers with conviction. Using the account of Jesus’ death and resurrection from Luke’s gospel, Strobel forms a logical and reasoned argument to help prove the accuracy of the Easter story. This is only a small booklet (approximately 96 pages) that is ideal for both churchgoers and non-churchgoers alike. Certainly something worth looking at this Easter!
Reviews courtesy of Iain Costello Manager, Word Bookstore, Alderley
THE NATIONAL PASTORS’ & LEADERS’ CONFERENCE WITH JOHN PIPER
It’s your job to bring the life-giving word of God to people. But who is bringing that word to you?...Come up for air at Oxygen 11 Oxygen 11: The National Pastors’ & Leaders’ Conference Let John Piper inspire you. Let John Lennox invigorate you. Monday August 29 – Wednesday August 31, 2011 Australian Technology Park, Sydney, NSW Early bird registration ends 11 May. Go to oxygen.kcc.org.au
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‘I said “let us pray” - not “lettuce play”!’ Congratulations to Geoff Suess
These children from Ipswich Baptist Church were helping others on Clean Up Australia Day.
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Classifieds POSITIONS VACANT
ALDGATE BAPTIST CHURCH A medium sized church in the Adelaide Hills, is looking for an Associate Pastor, who will have a strong focus on youth and young adults, but may also be involved in the broader ministries of the church. ABC has a long-standing, active youth scene. This will ideally be a fulltime or near fulltime position. For further details, please contact the Administrator at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 0438 250 588
Accommodation - AROUND THE STATE CALOUNDRA: Seafarer Chase luxury 2 b/r holiday apartments on the Sunshine Coast. Ocean views, heated pool, BBQ, security parking, close to beaches, shops, cinema and bowling club. Contact Marianne/Martin Burton, phone/fax 5491 7155. CALOUNDRA - GOLDEN BEACH: Highset three bedroom holiday home. Weekends or weekly. Pets OK. Close to beach. Phone 0402 077 822 or email@example.com CALOUNDRA - KINGS BEACH: Holiday unit, modern, pool, 100m from Kings Beach. From $390 pw. Phone Ray 0427 990 161.
FOR HIRE Large Auditorium: Seats 290. Qld Baptists Centre at Gaythorne. Phone Sandy or Emily 07 3354 5600 for more information or visit www.qb.com.au – venue hire.
Glasshouse Country Baptist Church Seeks a Youth Worker (Flexible up to 4 days/week) The successful applicant will work two days/week with the church youth group and two days/week as Chaplain in the church’s school.
ROOM TO LET Room to let in Brisbane: for Christian female. Master bedroom avail (furn or unfurn) in quiet 3bdrm home in Springfield, Brisbane with Christian lady. $160.00pw incl elec. Ph: Lynda 07 3818 7441 or email Lyndagw@three.com.au
Glasshouse Baptists is situated in Beerwah on the Sunshine Coast. This flexible position may suit someone who is presently studying and wishes to grow into the job. For further information please contact: Rev Chris Johnson, 0400 175 601.
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You can rest easy knowing your money is safe and working hard for you, and at the same time, helping to support much needed local projects.
Simply deposit your savings and investments in BAPLink, the investment fund of the Baptist Union of Queensland. BAPLink was set up to give people like you the opportunity to enjoy healthy interest returns, while creating a pool of funds from which Baptist churches and ministries can borrow to grow and serve their local communities. BAPLink provides: • Competitive interest rates • Security of a guaranteed return on your investment • Friendly service • No account keeping fees on savings and investment accounts
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For more information or an application form contact BAPLink: Building 1, Level 2, 53 Prospect Road, Gaythorne PO Box 6166, Mitchelton 4053 Phone: 3354 5611 or 1800 650 062 (outside Brisbane) Fax: 3354 5605 firstname.lastname@example.org www.qb.com.au/baplink
Vol 9 Issue 2