QB MAGAZINE THE VOICE OF QUEENSLAND BAPTISTS | FEB/MAR 18
Health Check for our churches
Celebrating a man of his word
Faith of the Flawed
Print post approved ISSN: 100003837 | The Queensland Baptist - first published in 1890. This series Vol 16 Issue 1. | qb.org.au
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QB Kids and their Families Dear fellow kids & family ministry leaders
QB Women Reflect God’s Love
QB Youth & Young Adults QB Youth State Camp 2018
26 Carinity Lorna returning ‘home’ to Fairfield Grange 28
The Training Collaborative Training for the Frontline
QCCC Celebrating a man of his word
QB Archives Survey shows what Queensland Baptists think about baptism
Malyon Have you ever thought about studying from home?
10 REGULARS 4 From the General Superintendent
QB PARTNERS 36 Global Interaction Ready...Set...Go! 38 BWAA Speaking out for a world made right
28 Cover Photo – Kyran Dippel from Crosslife abseiling at the QB Youth State Camp – QCCC Mapleton.
Knowing God Series
Speaking out: John Sweetman
Around the regions
Stewardship: You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means
Joy for all people all year round
Shavings of wood
When God says, “No”
Faith of the flawed
QB.ORG.AU FEB/MAR 18 3 Jordan Plath
FROM THE GENERAL SUPERINTENDENT
Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.” Happy New Year! I do trust that, as you journey through this new year with Jesus, that you will continue to know and experience His blessing. Recently, someone stated that 50% of all New Year’s resolutions are broken within the first four weeks of making them! Hardly an impressive record. Listed are diets, enjoyment of life, finances, relationships, being organised, habits, holiday plans and hobbies—all impressive. There are various markers throughout the year when people are likely to make
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resolutions—New Year, birthdays, anniversaries and significant events. These can be the incentive to pause, reflect and determine to do things differently. And that’s not a bad idea. Often our self-discipline, will and determination is insufficient to instil a lasting change! But what about our spirituality? Is this also a good time to review our relationship with God? Any time is a good time to examine our walk with God. It ought to be an ongoing process in which we engage. There
is always something new God wants to reveal to us, teach us, and lift us to a new level of relationship with Him. Jesus’ words in Matthew 6:33 remain foundational for the Christian life. “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.” “Seeking” relates to desire and commitment. “First” refers to both time and priority. Prayer is never a last resort, it is what we do first. “Kingdom” points to God’s
authority, His ruling over us. It is always what He wants, never about us. We are all guilty of confusing our plans with God’s, mixing them together to the point where we are unable to distinguish God’s voice from our own thoughts and desires. “Righteousness” means rightness – everything being right with God. Beyond all this, everything finds its rightful place – all these things will be provided for you. We periodically sing the chorus, “Turn your eyes upon Jesus, Look full in His wonderful face, And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, In the light of His glory and grace.” I have me minor difficulty with the line “And the things of earth will grow strangely dim”. It seems more appropriate to me that as we turn our eyes to Jesus, the “things of earth will fall into place” rather than having life’s issues strangely diminishing. We bring all the “stuff” of life into God’s presence, and lay it all at the feet of Jesus. So, now is a good time to re-state our commitment to the Lord Jesus, giving ourselves completely to Him. The change in us
- and Queensland Baptists – would be immeasurable! I wonder whether any of these – or any others resonate with you and your current situation? It is time to stand on the promises! Ministry Matters Only a few days after Christmas hot cross buns are appearing in the shops. Historically they have had significance. The buns mark the end of Lent. The cross represents the crucifixion of Jesus, and the spices signify the spices used to embalm Jesus at his burial. There is an outcry over the early availability of them. Too early! Well, the reality is that Christmas is deeply connected to Easter. Celebrating the birth of the Lord Jesus also points to His death for us. This is the very reason He came to earth. So, as you consume your hot cross buns, pause and consider the significance of the death of Jesus for you! The theme for Queensland Baptists is “Following Jesus.” It is as important as ever that we, as individuals and churches, do exactly that. You need to explore with Jesus what it means for you to follow Him and to respond in obedience. Our churches need to do the same. It is important that we are following Jesus and not another person, pastor, church or movement. As we read and study God’s Word and engage with Him in prayer, He will reveal what this means. On behalf of our family and Queensland Baptists Services Group, I do trust and pray you and your family will have a blessed New Year, and will know the joy of walking with Jesus throughout 2018 and beyond!
David Loder General Superintendent firstname.lastname@example.org
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FROM THE EDITOR
THE VOICE OF QUEENSLAND BAPTISTS
The qb is a member of the Australasian Religious Press Association, published bi-monthly by Queensland Baptist Services Group in February, April, June, August, October and December. Editor: Linda Nevell Design: Shell Graphix Print: Printcraft
The start of a new year is a time of reflection. We celebrate our achievements, accept our shortcomings, and set new goals. It can also be a time when we take stock of our lives, and recognise that God is calling us to make changes (some painful!) and to accept the new challenges God places on our hearts. At the start of each new year, I notice a sudden increase of joggers and speed walkers. They race around the streets and parks, trying to reach new fitness goals. After a few months, only the very few committed remain. As in Corinthians 9:24, God calls each of us to run our own race, but the key is to keep moving forward – to endure and finish well. The prize is beyond measure.
across Queensland gathered at the beautiful QCCC Mapleton site for three days of fun, worship, outdoor activities and meeting new friends. We have some amazing photos for you to enjoy. It is such a pleasure to see young people with a heart for Christ spending time together and encouraging each other.
As we reflect on our individual spiritual walks, we can also extend our view to the wider church family. The recent National Church Life Survey (NCLS) is one tool used to feel the pulse of our churches (Health Check for our churches) and Stewart Pieper shares interesting results and insights from our QB family.
I pray you have a happy and safe year ahead, and that you will achieve the goals our wise Father sets before each one of us. Thank you for your readership, and I hope you enjoy this first edition of the QB magazine for 2018.
2018 opened with an exciting event organised by the QB Youth and Young Adults team, in conjunction with QCCC. It was the launch of the very first QB Youth State Camp! Youth groups and leaders from
Thank you to all our puzzlers who entered the Christmas Word Unjumble competition. We have published the winners on the NEW QB magazine blog – www.qbmagazine.org.au. If you enjoy trivia, puzzles and online games, the blog features a great selection including Crossword, Sudoku, Backgammon, Deluxe jigsaw and more.
Linda Nevell Editor, the qb email@example.com
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, email and postal addresses. 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 P 07 3354 5633 F 07 3354 5646 Advertising rates are listed in The qb Media Kit available at www.qb.org.au/newsmedia. 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. Unless otherwise noted, Scripture verses appearing in The qb are from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
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Here are a few amazing facts about our incredible human body created by our incredible God: • Human bone is as strong as granite. A block of bone the size of a matchbox could support nine tonnes of weight. • When you blush, the lining of your stomach blushes too. • Your nose can remember 50,000 different scents. • Your body has enough iron in it to make a metal nail 3 inches long • The human eye can distinguish around 10 million different colours • Like fingerprints, everyone has a unique tongue print. • When awake, the brain produces enough electricity to power a small light bulb. • Your taste buds are replaced every ten days.
“If you look at the world, you’ll be distressed. If you look within, you’ll be depressed. But if you look at Christ, you’ll be at rest.” Corrie Ten Boom
Phone 3252 2031 QB.ORG.AU FEB/MAR 18 7
HEALTH CHECK FOR OUR CHURCHES BY STEWART PIEPER ASSOCIATE TO THE GENERAL SUPERINTENDENT
A husband and wife from a rural area who had been married for many years were meeting with a marriage counsellor to try and sort out their differences. “He just does not love me anymore!” Cried the upset wife. The counsellor asked the husband if this were true. The husband responded, “No, that is not true! I told her I loved her on our wedding day and that I would let her know if that ever changed, and it has not!” We all know that it takes effort and attention to maintain a vital and healthy marriage relationship. An important part of that process is having regular relationship ‘health checks’. In a similar way, it is good for churches to have regular health checks to maintain wellbeing and effectiveness. One such tool for evaluating how our churches are going is the National Church Life Survey (NCLS). Over the last 20 years NCLS research has tracked the core qualities of churches of various denominations across the country. This research has delivered significant insights into church health and vitality, as well as helping churches identify and focus on areas that might require attention. Over the course of the year we will be looking at some of the core aspects of the 2016 NCLS Queensland Baptists responses, including various features of our Internal, Inspirational, and outward core qualities, and how Queensland Baptists churches are tracking in key areas of church life.
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INTERNAL CORE QUALITIES In Acts 2:42-47 the New Testament describes in some detail how the early church related to each other in community. The outworking of their life together as followers of Jesus could be considered, by today’s standards at least, to be quite radical. Let’s face it, few of our churches today would meet daily, and none that I am aware of practice ‘Christian communism’, whereby all individual assets are sold and the resources are held collectively! Nonetheless, the inner core qualities of our corporate life as the body of Christ are still expressed in some way, albeit relevant to our contemporary context. In NCLS research the indicators of internal church health relate to the extent to which a church community: 1. Has an alive and growing Faith; 2. Experiences vital and nurturing Worship; 3. Feels a strong and growing sense of Belonging. We will consider some brief highlights of each of these three indicators in turn.
FAITH It is encouraging to observe that the 2016 NCLS survey reports that 29% indicated that their faith has grown substantially over the last 12 months through the ministry of their local church. This is an improvement on the 2011 survey where 25% reported significant spiritual growth
in a 12-month period. Those who indicated that they had not experienced any growth in their faith remained the same as the two previous surveys at 8%. Personal responsibility to nurture one’s own faith remains constant, with 77% of Baptists surveyed indicating that they engaged in personal devotional activities such as private prayer, Bible reading and meditation, either daily (52%) or at least a few times a week (25%). It is both disappointing and sobering to note that 7% of respondents indicated that God was only fairly important to them and that many other things were more important than God in their lives! On a positive note, there is still a strong desire among Queensland Baptists to continue to improve in this area, as Spiritual Growth was the clear priority that most attenders (44%) wanted to see in their church in the next 12 months. I would encourage you to pause now and meditate on the following scriptures. Perhaps you will also determine to take steps today to grow in your faith and encourage others to do likewise. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:24-25 But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life. Jude 1:20-21.
WORSHIP In the last 10 years the percentage of those who always or usually experience inspiration during church services has risen, from 65% to 76%. Similarly, those who always
experience a sense of the presence of God in a church service has risen to 40% compared with 30% ten years ago. Following these trends, those who always find the preaching very helpful to their life has risen from 30% in 2006 to 39% in 2016. The survey results in the area of worship imply that vital and nurturing worship is a characteristic shared by many Queensland Baptist churches. While not perfect, there is a consensus indicating that elements such as the style, structure and content of worship services in Baptist churches are helping people to experience God’s presence, grow in their understanding of who God is, as well as being challenged to act in response to the word of God. As you pause to meditate on the following Scriptures you might ask yourself this question: Do I go to my local church to ‘get something’ out of the worship service, or do I go to ‘give something’? Am I a consumer or a contributor when it comes to corporate worship? Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:16-17
BELONGING Of the three aspects that NCLS use as indicators of internal church vitality this one has changed the least over time – see the infographic for statistics (right). The New Testament makes it clear that being ‘in Christ’ as an individual also means belonging to the ‘body of Christ’ as a collective faith community. We belong to God and are committed to serving Him, but we also belong to each other for the glory of God, and to see His purpose worked out in the world. Our commitment to the local church should be not just to turn up, but to be devoted to one another and to get involved! As you reflect upon the following scripture, you might ask yourself how you can improve your own sense of belonging and encourage others in theirs. Be devoted to one another in love. Honour one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervour, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Romans 12:10-13
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“THE TIMES, THEY ARE A-CHANGIN’ – AND WE ARE PRESSING AHEAD!”
Back in the 1960s Bob Dylan was telling us that “The times, they are a-Changin.” I am not sure if this was his take on Ecclesiastes 3, where the teacher reminds us that “There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven.” But, to be sure, life is full of changing seasons, and Malyon is experiencing something of that change right now.
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On 24 November 2017 John Sweetman wrapped up sixteen very faithful and fruitful years of ministry as Principal of Malyon College. I moved into the role the following week, and gathered the faculty and staff together to set before them something of my vision for the next chapter in the Malyon story. In setting out a vision for the future, I
also shared with the faculty from 1 Corinthians 4:1 - 2, “So then, people ought to regard us as servants of Christ and as those entrusted with the secret things of God. Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful.”
This is the earnest longing of my heart, that I will be found faithful in the discharge of the responsibility that God and the denomination have entrusted to me. Over the past few months many have assured me of their prayers and asked me how they might best pray for me. My constant reply has been to ask that God would provide me with wisdom, grace, humility and strength. I would be glad if you too would join in that prayer.
So, what is the vision for Malyon as we move ahead into the future that God has prepared for us?
Throughout much of 2017 a major review of the operations of Malyon College was undertaken. This review finalised in August, considered all aspects of the colleges’ services and operations.
The review was undertaken by a specialist team headed by Bridgeman Baptists founding pastor Peter Sweetman. The final report, which was peer reviewed, strongly affirmed the operation, structure, reputation and direction of Malyon College. Findings from the review included: •
A significant percentage of surveyed students found course content to be “excellent” and very relevant and practical to their needs The College is held in high regard by interviewed pastors A high percentage of students affirmed that their ministry skills and spiritual growth were enhanced through their Malyon studies The faculty were competent and gifted communicators and teachers
Courses, programs and awards were of high quality Course delivery modes were appropriately diverse The College contributed positively to the work of Queensland Baptists
Despite the overwhelming affirmation, the review team identified areas where change could enhance the future direction and operation of Malyon College. The recommendations covered many topics, including the Malyon vision, how to integrate QB training, flexible study and the development of teaching staff. In October 2017, the Malyon council and faculty held a full day retreat to discuss the recommendations, and endorsed the majority. This review and the Council’s response has now provided the basis for the development of a new Strategic Plan, which will govern and direct operations over the next four to five years. Already, key ideas contained in this review have begun to inform and shape a range of our activities, including the College’s marketing direction.
Principal Rev Dr John Sweetman for his strong contribution to the College and the denomination over the past 16 years. Recent developments in our wider Australian society bring fresh challenges for how we take the unchanging message of the gospel and apply it to our rapidly changing world. We also need to be agile and responsive to the growing changes in education delivery. Theological education is changing at an increasing rate and it is imperative that we remain at the forefront of innovation in this area. We need to remember that we are providing students with skills for faithful service and ministry and this will extend as an overflow of God’s grace in their lives.
Peter Francis Principal, Malyon firstname.lastname@example.org
I wish to commend the review team on the quality and depth of their report, and to thank our out-going
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Alice Rogers, aged 85, was recently baptised at Innisfail Baptist Family. She was so excited to be celebrating her first Christmas Day Service as a believer! Alice came to know the Lord through our dedicated Warrina Aged Care team.
Boonah Baptist Church • Colin Woodard
Cleveland Baptist Church • Clint Banks • Cameron Clark • Isaac Edwards-Burke • Matthew O’Connor • Ashleigh Palin • Makayla Richards
New Heart Baptist Church • Sor Eh Htoo • Wah Ree Htoo • Dar Nay Ye Lar Stanthorpe Baptist Church • Hannah Paech • Ethan Tjan • Amy Tjan • Phyllis Neyland
Innisfail Baptist Family • Alice Rogers Global Mission Church of Gold Coast • Eddie Ha • Judy Lee • Gumhwa You Gumhwa You
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Moore Park Baptist Church • Jordan Drew • Gus Eardley • Tunoa Johnson • David Osborne • Grace Vang • Yukari Ogaki • Julian Ogaki-Graham Mackay Baptist Church • Jordan Plath • Lara Tye
Phyllis Neyland aged 86 has been a Christian most of her life but really felt convicted that she was to be baptised.
Toowoomba Community Church • Zachary Jobling • Danny Marsh • Louise Polley
Around the regions
Joining local churches together– Hosanna Logan City Church We recently held our community Christmas Celebration at Mabel Park High. We shared the vision with two local churches, who were excited about hosting the event with us. It was a testament to the churches working side by side, and proclaiming the Lord Jesus over the city in celebration of his birth. Over 1,300 people attended the event, and it was a chance to reach out to the local community and share the message of Christ. We are blessed with people of many different nationalities and backgrounds, and the carols program reflected this, in cultural performances and worship. There was also a variety of children’s rides, food stalls and fireworks. It was such a beautiful night, filled with singing, sharing of testimonies and a message of peace and joy. We are planning to host an Easter event in 2018 with other churches and community groups. Our aim is to reclaim important events in the Christian Calendar, and proclaim Jesus louder in the Logan community.
PRAYER IS POWERFUL Please set aside some time to pray for the people recently baptised. They have taken a courageous and life changing step in their walk with Christ. Baptism is an important event in the believer’s walk with Jesus Christ. The Bible talks about water immersion baptism, in which a believer makes a public confession of their faith. Jesus led the way in example of water baptism! Galatians 3:26-27 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.
Riverlife Baptist Church – City Prayer Gathering Seventeen Mile Rocks | www.riverlife.org.au It was wonderful to see churches united at the City Prayer Gathering on January 7 —One Heart, One Prayer, Our City. We welcomed Christians from all denominations and traditions – all those with a heart for Jesus. It was our second year running, growing from around 200 attendees last year to around 275, with many significant conversations from the public passing by. Our prayer was to see our city come to know Christ as Saviour and that His Kingdom would reign in the five major areas we specifically had representatives pray for—Government (Stewart Pieper, Baptist Union Regional Consultant), Social Justice (Robyn Robertson, World Vision), Mental and Physical Health (Dr. Geoff Mitchell, MD), Families (Kirsten Anstey), and Business and Commerce (Glen Wright, Development Manager for Geon Property). We worshiped as a community, prayed for these major areas, had a short outreach message, and prayed in groups for our city with those standing nearby. We look forward to continuing this as an annual event!
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Jumping into community events – Innisfail Baptist Family
QB Prayer Focus 2018 3 - 10 June CALL TO PRAYER As we read the gospel accounts of the life of the Lord Jesus we cannot help but observe our Lord’s commitment to prayer. In this, Jesus modeled for us that prayer is not an optional aspect of a relationship with God; it is a fundamental necessity! Prayer is a tangible expression of our absolute dependence on Father God. In 2018 Queensland Baptists will be seeking to intentionally follow in the steps of Jesus in a number of ways. One of these is in the area of prayer. While it is good and right to cultivate our own individual prayer life, we also need to be deliberate in deepening our expression of corporate prayer. The QB prayer week provides a perfect opportunity for us to intentionally join with others in the body of Christ to seek God in unity. Last year 73 churches registered their involvement in the QB prayer focus. What was notable about the prayer focus last year was the increased number of cooperative combined prayer events organised between churches, as well as the number of churches involved in combined area events. Acts 4:31 describes what is possible when we intentionally take time out to pray together as a united body, “After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.” May the power of God be released through the people of God as we prayerfully follow in the steps of Jesus in 2018! Stewart Pieper (Associate to the GS)
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For several years, with an initial grant from Baplink, Innisfail Baptist Family became known in the local community for our Christmas Celebration! Over time the crowds grew to more than 500, with pony rides, laser tag, petting zoo, giant slide, tractor tug-of-war, carols, and presentation of the Christmas message in unique and easy to understand ways. A favourite attraction was two jumping castles, which ended up on loan, and in the church’s care. When no buyers were found, the owners made the church an offer “too good to refuse”. Again, Baplink came to our aid with another ministry grant and we were able to purchase the jumping castles and trailer. Now Innisfail Baptist Family can use the jumping castles for broader community events, the first being “Diamonds in the Sky”, a local sporting/cultural event to raise awareness of suicide prevention. Next came the Community Carols sponsored by local churches on the bank of the Johnstone River. More than 500 people attended this great evening of family fun and carols singing. As we seek different ways of connecting with our community, the jumping castles have an important role to play. We are thankful to our Lord for the opportunity, and means to buy them. Thank you Baplink and QB!
Revival Conference and Bible Study Bethania Karen Baptist Church We launched a three-day intensive revival conference intended for all Karen people of Myanmar living in Queensland. The Revival and Bible Study was mainly held in the Karen language, and we invited Karen spiritual leaders from America and Thailand. In a world that is characterised by considerable changes, the revival conference encouraged us to continue being a faithful witness to Jesus, and most importantly, to extend God’s Kingdom. The church’s mission is to “seek the Lord” (Amos 5:6) and “do the works that Jesus has been doing” (John 14:12). Like all other activities that our Church has been engaged in, the purpose of the project was to release the good news of Jesus Christ to non-believers in the Karen Community, and encourage Karen Christians to grow spiritually and “go and make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). For church leaders, this was an opportunity to reflect and release the good news of Jesus Christ and “take care of His sheep” (John 21:16). The conference was funded in part by a ministry grant “We would like to extend our deepest gratitude to QB and Baplink for their generous grant, and giving an opportunity for a small community church like us to grow spiritually, do God’s work and build His kingdom”.
More than 140,000 refugees live in camps along the ThaiBurma border, and most are ethnic minority Karen. They have fled their homeland to escape killings, torture, rape, landmines and forced labour by the Burmese military regime. The refugee camps are administered by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The vast majority of refugees from Burma selected for resettlement in Australia are Christian.
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“Never judge a book by its cover. Pastor David Tidey sports a large beard, is often bare footed and very casual in his approach. He has a unique way of fostering cooperation, and cohesion amongst local community groups and businesses to deliver good outcomes for themselves and their community. This quiet achiever works tirelessly for the Yandina Community in many Volunteer positions and we’d like to show our appreciation by nominating him for this award.” David moved to Yandina 9 years ago and became a driving force behind many community projects. He works closely with the Sunshine Coast Council to advise, develop and deliver infrastructure projects and other issues concerning the town. Each week you will find him doing a walk and visitation to all the local businesses to check in on how they are going and addressing any concerns, both business wise and personally. David volunteers many hours towards the wellbeing of the town.
Pastor Dave Tidey from Yandina Baptist Church nominated for Australia Day Award Pastor, Rev. David (Dave) Tidey, was nominated by the Yandina Community for the 2018 Citizen of the Year Sunshine Coast Australia Day Awards. For each nomination, community representatives wrote why they believe the person should be nominated. This is what was written about Pastor Dave.
David is motivated by the belief that to have a healthy community we need to give a hand up so people can create a safe, secure and ‘Community Aware’ lifestyle. Community programs started by David include the Children’s Playgroup, Yandina Men’s Shed, and Coffee & Chat group and he encouraged the development of a Plein Air Art group and Toastmasters International club in Yandina. Dave like all our QB pastors, is a great support and role model to the local community, and God works through all His servants in a unique and powerful way. We acknowledge all the amazing work they do, as they shine the light of Christ across the state.
Community Connect Centre – Park Ridge Baptist Church Park Ridge is in the process of being transformed from a rural suburb of 3000 residents to a thriving community of 40 000+. Park Ridge Community Connect Centre (PRCCC) aims to help keep the ‘people’ dimension of the development process at the forefront. This is a community service of the Park Ridge Baptist Church, and is served by community volunteers from Monday to Friday. “We are here to help people find one another, connect with the history and heritage of Park Ridge, plan together for our future and make local products, services and organisations accessible”. The Community centre provides a place for the locals to meet friends, discuss concerns, ask for help and access local business and community organisations. They also provide information about the Park Ridge area, and have set up a “History Wall” with interesting photos and stories of historical significance. The centre fields a diverse range of questions from locals, and hopes to assist the Park Ridge community through a new phase of growth.
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HARTLEY WINDOW BROWNS PLAINS BAPTIST CHURCH There will always be in seventy-three That night I’ll never regret When I met my FATHER and JESUS my Brother It’s a night I’ll never forget. There is one more, it’s in seventy-four Of GODS family I am a member We were gathered together under overcast weather It’s a Sunday, I’ll always remember. With a breeze in the air, all the youth group was there It was ‘Crossroads’ to whom I’m a part We were near Sutton’s Beach, the pastor ready to preach While we prayed and sang songs from the heart. The Ocean Pacific, looking really terrific The scenery, what Glory devine There were ten of us who, the waters of baptism go through While we waited for our turn in line. When my turn finally came, knowing I’d never be the same I remember quite clearly what I said My old life has now gone and I’m never alone In my Saviours footsteps I’ll tread. What happened then, came another ten And through the waters they went Which to me it just proves, when the HOLY SPIRIT moves GODS Love will never relent. One lady was walking, she started talking And asked us to tell her ‘what’s happen’n’ So we told her the story of GODS Love, Grace and Glory There she was baptised right then. My parents were there, with my joy came to share Up from the beach they stood For all of their praying, they knew they’d be saying GOD answered our prayers like HE would. We continued to pray, cause we wanted to stay As the LORD we wanted to Praise For what HE had done, how HE’D touched everyone We’d remember the rest of our days. Stories come to an end, GOD still calls me friend In HIS family, I’m still a member Forty three years have past, I’m still holding fast To that ‘Sunday, I’ll always remember’.
Pause DAPHNE M. ROBERTS CITY TABERNACLE BAPTIST CHURCH
Sunday, I’ll Always Remember
Black comma Clinging to the empty lines Of a finely drawn tree. A pause – Between the act of awaking And toil of the day. A waiting – A drawing of breath in the dawn-clear air And glow of the sun. I pause Like the bird to reflect, To draw strength for the day. A tryst – A moment with God in refreshing prayer And warmth of His Love.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO CONTRIBUTE YOUR OWN “GOD MOMENT”? It can be a poem, short story, testimony or quote. Please email your entries to email@example.com or post to PO Box 6166 Mitchelton Q 4053. Every published entry will win a $30 Koorong gift voucher.
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Dear fellow kids & family ministry leaders, Happy 2018! We are praying that this year is your best yet, and that God does amazing things through your team and church, to bring many kiddos and their families to know Jesus as Lord and Saviour. To that end, we want you guys to know about, and to join us at IGNITE Children’s Ministry Conference & Expo. Every year, from all across our state, heaps (over 200) of us from QB churches gather together with around 800 other passionate, like-minded kids & family ministry teams for a whole Saturday together. We worship together, hear from incredible experts, take part in over 70 electives & are generally blessed by getting together & learning more about how to minister to kids & families for Jesus. It’s our annual conference together, and we look forward to the first Saturday in March every year. There are plenty of options for you to join us if you’re out of town – (or really out of town!), if you’re new, if you’re
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in Religious Instruction, if you’re a senior pastor, or even if you’re a junior leader! Check out the website for more details – and don’t forget to visit the QB Kids booth in the expo and say hey to our team! And don’t forget – for leaders of leaders in kids ministry – there’s IGNITE Summit. It’s our annual leaders retreat at Gateway Baptist, the Friday before IGNITE. Our very own QB Kids team member, Ps Tracy Valentine, organises & hosts us and many others – and completely blesses our socks off. Check out the details on the website igniteexpo.org.au/summit/ For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org We can’t wait to see you there!
Sally Contessi Team Leader QB Kids and their families email@example.com
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STEWARDSHIP: YOU KEEP USING THAT WORD, I DO NOT THINK IT MEANS WHAT YOU THINK IT MEANS BY BRENT VAN MOURIK - PRESS SERVICE INTERNATIONAL
(QUEENSLAND STATE REPRESENTATIVE FOR BAPTIST WORLD AID AUSTRALIA)
Stewardship is one of those ‘Christianese’ words, isn’t it? We use it in church, and it comes with all kinds of loaded meaning, everyone nods knowingly at everything you have conveyed by its use. But does it mean what we think it means? Sometimes, I don’t think so. I will admit upfront, I used to use the word ‘stewardship’ all the time when talking about money. “You have to be a good steward of what God has given you” I would say. “You can’t make yourself poor for the sake of the poor, or else you will need others to support you financially” I would counsel. But all this rhetoric misses entirely what it means to be a steward. Let me explain.
THE MEANING OF STEWARDSHIP The Macquarie Dictionary defines a steward as “one who manages
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another’s property or financial affairs”, the key phrase being another’s. You see, we are not stewards of the money God has given us, we are stewards of God’s money. Psalm 24 verse 1 says “the earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it. The world and all its people belong to Him.” Haggai chapter 2 verse 8 says “the silver and the gold are mine” (being God’s). All money is God’s money. It might seem like I’m arguing semantics, but it makes a major difference to the way we understand stewardship.
OUR MONEY OR GOD’S MONEY? If we are stewarding money God has given us, then the money, although gifted from God, is essentially our money (and actually we are not
‘stewarding’ it at all). We would be free to use this money according to our vision and values, because it’s ours. However, if we are stewarding God’s money then we have a responsibility to use it according to His vision and values, which are quite a bit scarier than ours at times!
JESUS’ VISION FOR HIS MONEY If you are unsure what Jesus’ vision is for how His money should be used, read through Luke chapter 12 verses 13 to 34. Herein he makes all kinds of wild remarks like “do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear” and “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor.” These are not the words of someone who would say “make sure
you don’t make yourself poor as you seek to help the poor.”
DON’T HURT ME! Now, before you start throwing stones, and accuse me of being an extremist, let me say that I’m not necessarily saying everyone should sell all they have and give the money to the poor. What I am saying, though, is that we need to stop using stewardship as an excuse. God does richly provide for our enjoyment (1 Timothy chapter 6 verses 17 to 19), and, at times, he might even be calling us to have a good amount of wealth (In Genesis chapter 13 verse 2 we read that Abram was blessed with stacks of wealth). What He is not calling us to is selfish miserliness disguised as ‘good stewardship.’ We need to be good stewards of God’s money, I just don’t think that means using 98% of it on ourselves.
THE PARABLE OF THE TALENTS It’s not a perfect example, but the parable of the talents in Matthew chapter 25 verses 14 to 30, I think, speaks to this issue of stewardship. The master entrusts his money to the servants, two of whom put the money to work and double it, one of whom buries what was entrusted to him, so returning the money with no increase. The master says to the third servant, “you terrible steward, why did you take it upon yourself to decide what to do with my money?” Ok, so he doesn’t say that, but he could have. The servant knew that the master would have wanted the money spent such that it made more money, but didn’t appreciate the master’s ethics, so took it upon himself to store the money in a hole thereby not duplicating it at all. So we have to ask: as we steward God’s money, what sort of
duplication does he expect from it, and what could we do that would be akin to burying it? I think there is a case to be made for God wanting his money to duplicate in terms of kingdom fruit, and so in order to bury it, we would have to spend it on things that don’t offer any ‘kingdom fruit,’ like the expensive cabinet I own just to store glasses and plates in (oh no he didn’t!)
WHAT HAVE YOU BURIED? From all this we need to ask, how much of God’s money are we burying, and how much of it are we using to multiply His kingdom, as He would want? Can we justify giving 2% of our income to missions, whilst spending 98% of it on personal niceties? Maybe we can, if such niceties really have a kingdom value to them. But when I think of a lot of the niceties I buy and own, they look suspiciously like a hole in the ground in terms of kingdom fruit to me.
For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! – Isaiah 43:19 As we move into 2018, there are some of us who will look back on 2017 and be glad it’s over, and there are some of us who will look back on 2017 as a wonderful year. Whichever side you fall on, regardless of the good, or not so good, 2018 is a new year. A new year of new things, a new year on your journey with God. For us at Queensland Baptist Women, we believe God is taking us into something new this year. As I mentioned in the last issue of the QB magazine, our camps and conferences have been rebranded and will now be known as: Anew conferences – Women with a heart for change. Isaiah 43:19
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Change within – to know we are deeply loved by our Heavenly Father. Isaiah 43:4 Change in those around us – to deeply love those around us, and to share God’s love with them To work towards changing the world for those in poverty by prayer, giving and going. Proverbs 31:8, Psalm 82:3-4
God not only wants us to know that we are deeply loved by Him, He also wants us to share that love with those in our world. In our conferences in 2018 and beyond, we will be learning more about God’s love for us, and how we can share that love in practical ways.
Our theme for 2018 is ‘Reflect God’s love’. 2 Corinthians 3:18 says, So, all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like Him as we are changed into His glorious image. God is calling us to reflect His love to those around us, our family, friends, neighbours, and to reflect His love by helping to change the world for those living in extreme poverty. We don’t have to be the ‘perfect’ Christian to reflect God’s love. We
don’t have to be the shiniest mirror or the most vibrant disco ball. God can and will use us in whatever state we’re in, during our hard times and in our brokenness, to reflect His love to those around us, to those in need, to those that need to see His love. In 2018 we are running 4 conferences and 2 camps across our State. We are kicking off the year with Longreach on the 25th and 26th of May and then our Innisfail conference is on the 8th and 9th of June. Bronwen Charles (Healy) is the keynote speaker at both conferences and at our Dalby conference on the 14th and 15th of September. Charissa Steffens is speaking at our Mt Tamborine camp on the 22nd to
the 24th of June, and at our Biloela conference on the 24th and 25th of August. Our Mapleton camp is again on the first weekend in August, the 3rd to the 5th, and our keynote speakers are Karen Wilson, and Gershon Nimbalker. We are so excited to be hearing from some fantastic, godly speakers this year at all our events. To find out more about our speakers, and for more information on venues and prices, head to our new website www.anewconference.org.au.
We are looking forward to our 2018 conferences with great anticipation of what God is going to do in our lives, the lives of those around us, and to see the change we can make in the world. Registrations open on the 1st of March, and we can’t wait to see you at one of our conferences around the state.
To keep up to date with the latest information, visit and like our Facebook page, Anew conference, and follow us on Instagram.
Cathy Knechtli, State Director, Queensland Baptist Women firstname.lastname@example.org
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QB YOUTH STATE CAMP
The first QB Youth State Camp was a success! The camp was held over three days at QCCC Mapleton (18th – 20th January), and over 200 youth and leaders attended from QB churches across South East Queensland - a huge step in the right direction would be to have all of Queensland involved. The speakers were Dan Paterson from Ravi Zacharias International Ministries, and Sally Contessi the state leader for QB Kids and their families. Everyone had a great time, and the camp generated new friendships and conversations. The theme was “Brighter Together” taken from John 13:3435 – and this was shown in the support, empathy and enjoyment shared by all. The weather was sunny – perfect for outdoor activities like pool basketball, archery, canoeing, flying fox and lots more. There were team activities and an opportunity to help break the world record for the world’s longest paper prayer chain. Spiritually God was working, and there were many who have been prompted to get baptised and to take discipleship seriously. Praise God for his work in the hearts and lives of our youth and leaders!
“Hey guys, we loved the camp!! So good getting to know so many legends over the past three days. The worship, breakout sessions, prayer chain, Games in free time and tribal activities were all spot on for our crew. Looking forward to next year already! God bless you guys in each of your ministries. Thanks again Aaron and Kirsten” “Thanks for all of those involved in organising the camp. Our Kruger Youth crew had so much fun but what they loved most about it was the worship and the sessions. They have grown in their passion to make disciples and are ready to make that next step in their relationship with God. Bring on having more followers building the kingdom throughout QLD”.
“Thanks to all involved in organising and planning this weekend. Have very happy leaders and very happy kids!”
“Thanks, our youth loved the camp and would recommend it to others, we had some great conversations and realisations, God was doing some great things! And one soon to be baptism from one of our girls! Look forward to doing it again!”
Lorna returning ‘home’ to Fairfield Grange A Townsville local will return to the neighbourhood of her youth when Carinity’s new Fairfield Grange retirement community opens this year. Lorna Mead used to watch her children play on the green paddocks of her family’s plant nursery in Idalia. Fast forward more than half a century and Lorna is set to live in her old neighbourhood again. Lorna was one of the first people to put her name down to move into The Avenues at Fairfield Grange, currently under construction. As a newlywed in the 1960s she and husband Ray lived across the road from the Fairfield Grange site “long enough to see a crocodile swim past during the floods”.
Lorna Mead and the baby grand piano she donated to Carinity Fairfield Grange in Townsville.
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When Lorna was a child the Idalia district featured horse stables, dairies and cattle grazing in the fields.
impressed” by the care given to her late husband at Carinity’s existing residential aged care complex on the site.
By mid-2018, the area will welcome Fairfield Grange’s first 38 architecturally designed, energyefficient retirement villas including designer kitchens with European appliances, spacious living areas and ensuites.
She was so impressed that she donated her 1940s Danemann professional piano for use by Fairfield Grange’s aged care residents.
Set on 6.5 hectares of landscaped gardens at Fairfield Waters, the $30-million community is across the road from Townsville’s first urban village precinct, with boutique retail sites including the city’s only artisan bakery, gourmet butcher and full-line delicatessen. Lorna decided to join the retirement community after being “very
“I wanted to show my appreciation for the manner in which they looked after Ray. The care he received there was exemplary, they did a wonderful job and they were so compassionate and accommodating,” Lorna says. For more on joining the Fairfield Grange community call 1300 060 060 or go to FairfieldGrange.org.au.
Relish the best in home care Back in the kitchen with the help of Carinity Home Care, Sam, 89, is fulfilling a passion he thought we would have to give up. “I used to make up to 35 varieties of jams and chutneys – in two years I made 1100 bottles of rosella jam alone – but I gave that away about three years ago,” he says. “But now with the help of Carinity carers, they’re helping me but I’m teaching them how to make jam and chutneys and relish ... and they’re loving it.” Sam, an avid gardener who has about 280 plants in his backyard greenhouse, and his wife Heather, 87, are living independently in their home of 19 years thanks to the aid of Carinity. “In the last couple of years we have been getting assistance from Carinity. They are just so thoughtful. They help with everything inside and outside the house,” Sam says.
“They come and do gardening, planting plants and weeding gardens and they take us to do our shopping and to see our doctors, chemists and physio. “We just could not cope at the moment without them.” Help from Carinity Home Care means the great-grandparents can “live the life you love, in the home you’ve always loved.” Carinity’s Lifestyle Carers assist with nursing, personal grooming, household chores, shopping and other activities. Heather, 87, a knitting marvel, says the Lifestyle Carers “do what I can’t do” around the house. “I like to try and do something so I do the load of washing, put it in the basket and they put it on the line,” she says.
Carinity Home Care clients Heather and Sam Hunter at their home.
The Hunters can still enjoy their independence while living in a friendly neighbourhood, with a little bit of support. “I still love my garden and I get out occasionally doing a bit of cultivating,” says Sam, whose passion for plants and flowers started at the age of four. “The important thing is we’ve got good neighbours and I can continue with my other hobby – albeit on a small scale.” The Carinity Home Care service is now available in the Hervey Bay, Maryborough and Fraser Coast region. If you are at the stage of life where you wish to continue living at home but require a little help, visit CarinityHomeCare.com.au or call 1300 109 109.
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THE TRAINING COLLABORATIVE
Christine Pilt (right)
TRAINING FOR THE FRONTLINE Christine Pilt is a Baptist chaplain at the Prince Charles Hospital on Brisbane’s northside. She works with Carinity, and has visited more than 130 patients. One such patient was a Christian man, dying of cancer. In what was to be his final week, during one of Christine’s visits she noticed a Bible on his shelf. After asking if she could read some verses to him, the man exclaimed, ‘beautiful words, wonderful words.’ Christine then responded with the words from the old hymn, ‘Offer pardon and peace to all; Wonderful words of life.’ They sang the hymn together and then he prayed. These are the stories of chaplaincy. As part of her training, Christine has been undertaking Certificate IV in Chaplaincy and Pastoral Care through The Training Collaborative, Queensland Baptists Vocational Education and Training college. Christine says that the programme has added practical depth to the theological foundation she received through her Malyon College Bachelor of Ministry. She credits the
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course in giving her a greater awareness and skill to engage in issues like suicide, chronic disease, palliative care, grief and loss and dementia. Chaplaincy and Pastoral Care Training Coordinator, Janelle Tidey, has received similar feedback from other chaplains who have been part of this training program. Janelle says, ‘our course is designed to meet the real-life training needs of people who are delivering care and chaplaincy services in different settings. Christine shared a beautiful story of God’s ministry. During a visit to a hospital ward, she heard soft weeping behind closed curtains. She popped her head around and saw a lady, so she introduced herself as the Baptist chaplain. In response, the lady said, ‘I was praying for an angel to come to me.’ This patient, a business woman, had just been given a diagnosis of a terminal illness. In her pyjamas, in a room alongside men, with her dignity compromised, Christine spoke to her about how she could return to the Lord that she knew in her earlier years. They prayed together for God’s forgiveness and rejoiced in His infinite loving mercy.
for many regional and rural churches is that their pastors are bi-vocational. The church doesn’t have the finance to support a pastor full time. This can be good because the pastor has a job within the community, but it also limits the pastoral workload. So, when families like the O’Connor’s come along they are welcomed with open arms. Dan and his wife Melinda have already made a great contribution to ministry, with Dan sharing some of the preaching responsibilities with Doug. Sensing a call to pastoral ministry, Dan commenced study with The Training Collaborative through its online Diploma of Christian Ministry and Theology distance program. The church at Charter’s Towers has invited Dan to become a student intern from 2018, where he will work a few days a week in the church. Dan appreciates the flexible nature of the course, fitting around his work and family commitments. Dan and Melinda O’Connor with daughter Amy.
Dan O’Connor, and his wife Melinda, both high school teachers, moved to the north Queensland town of Charters Towers with their young child Amy in 2016. The O’Connor’s linked up with the local Baptist church, led and pastored by Doug and Anne Reid. Our regional and rural communities have their own challenges when it comes to ministry, so it is a great encouragement to local fellowships when a young Christian family become part of the church. Doug Reid explains, “the challenge for churches in towns like ours, is the transient nature of employment. For example, a few years ago we had two local policemen and their families join the church, but they were transferred after a couple of years, so the dynamics of our church can change from one year to the next.” Another challenge
The Training Collaborative’s Diploma is designed with people like Dan in mind. It is a foundational ministry training program covering personal spiritual formation, leadership and ministry skills and Biblical and theological education. Perhaps either you, or someone you know senses a call to leadership in a Christian community, or perhaps you have a calling to pastoral care. The Training Collaborative may have a pathway that suits you.
Andrew McCafferty CEO/Principal www.trainingcollaborative.org.au
Subscription Form - $19.50 per year
THE VOICE OF QUEENSLAND BAPTISTS
WHY NOT SUBSCRIBE? Treat yourself or give as a gift.
Email details to firstname.lastname@example.org Or post to PO Box 6166 Mitchelton Q 4051
Address Email Phone Send invoice via email
QB.ORG.AU FEB/MAR 18 29
QB.ORG.AU FEB/MAR 18 29
CELEBRATING A MAN OF HIS WORD
Baptist Camping’s first site at Currumbin was donated to the ministry in the early 1930s by Ken Lethem. Passionate about camping, and a shrewd banker, Lethem’s donation included the caveat that profits from the campsite had to be reinvested back into the ministry. It also stated that if the property was sold, proceeds would be re–invested into the camping ministry on the same terms. In the early 1980s Queensland Baptists sold the Currumbin property and used the proceeds to renovate existing Baptist campsites. They also purchased greenfields site to develop a new camping venture, which for a decade, had been visioned as the “North Coast Convention Centre”. Several properties were purchased, and in
1983 QCCC Mapleton was opened as the largest campsite venue in Queensland. During the process, the founding fathers also approached local farmer, Nick Kidcaff, to see if he would sell them 20 acres on the southern boundary. Nick did not want to sell, but made a handshake deal that he would give Queensland Baptists first option to purchase when he decided to sell. Nick is now 75, and earlier this year he came into reception at QCCC Mapleton to make good on his promise. He’s diligently worked the land for more than forty years, but now wants it available for QCCC to fully realise the original vision for Mapleton. The 20-acre property contains a 3-bedroom brick home, two Nick Kidcaff harvests the last avocados
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storage sheds, 320 avocado and citrus trees, and infrastructure and machinery for vegetable farming. The property shares a 300-metre boundary with QCCC Mapleton, and has a large open valley, surrounded by acres of dams and an elevated ridgeline with western views. This property expands QCCC Mapleton’s total footprint to 55 acres, and gives QCCC the land to grow its Outdoor Education Activities, including farm experiences and paddock-to-plate cuisine. The “North Coast Convention Centre” was envisioned as a 550-bed conference centre and this is what was sought, and granted, when Queensland Baptists applied for development approval in 1982. QCCC Mapleton’s development stalled at 300 beds because the existing property was at saturation for quality outdoor education activities. However, the purchase of a further 20 acres provides the land and confidence to keep Mapleton amongst the top-tier of Outdoor Education ministries in Queensland. Queensland’s industry pioneers for camping and outdoor education were Christian operators and denominations. In recent years, government and corporate operators have muscled in—the corporate motivation being to make profit. When I first commenced in this role, I was on a steep learning curve, and attended my first conference of Outdoor Educators. The first question I heard has stayed with me ever since. A decent Outdoor Education operator is always asking themselves “how is the experience we’re offering any different to a ride at a local Show or Theme Park?” The recent commercialisation of Outdoor Education runs the risk
of reducing outdoor education to a pale imitation of its former self. Soon you’ll be able to run a zipline in a shopping centre, but it’s an individual thrill-seeking adrenalin rush, far removed from the deliberate approach we take to building character and group-bonding, using ziplines we have operated for decades. As QCCC operates three of the flagship sites for Christian Camping, we have a sacred and important responsibility to maintain the primacy of Christian camping in our State. Christian sites have a secret weapon—their culture and motivation is formed by their Judeo-Christian focus, and it differs from those of the government and corporate sectors. The aim of our activities is to enhance communities, rather than provide thrills for individuals and generate profit. This year the focus for QCCC’s staff is to “be and help create Romans 12 people”. Apostle Paul was the original tent-maker, so I’m sure he would have a strong affinity for modern Christian camping and Outdoor Education! His words in Romans 12 read like a manual on how to build a ministry which is a blessing to the wider society
in which it is placed. Living transformed lives publicly, we can honour the Father with words, hands and deeds (Romans 12:12). Leading by example, we can help others explore and maximise their gifts to bless the world. (3-8). We can be an example of a Christled community to an increasingly unchurched world. (9-12). Our service and hospitality is provided as both a blessing and an example of the Eucharist to strangers in our midst (13-16). Finally, we can demonstrate the counter-cultural, sacrificial life of Christ (17-21). QCCC is a beneficiary of decades of investment from men and women of both vision and integrity. Securing Nick’s property will help us to realise the original vision for QCCC Mapleton established in the 1970s. Nick adds his signature to an essential part of the story – a man true to his word who honoured his historical commitments. It is the turn of a new generation to take this ministry onward and upward.
Andrew Grant Director of Queensland Conference and Camping Centres email@example.com QB.ORG.AU FEB/MAR 18 31
SURVEY SHOWS WHAT QUEENSLAND BAPTISTS THINK ABOUT BAPTISM Baptism of believers by full immersion is what gives us Baptists our name, so it is important to understand this rite appropriately— any changes could be significant! A change did take place at the 2017 QB Assembly, which reinstated a provision about church membership that dated from 1899 but had been abolished in 2003. It said that only people baptised by immersion as believers can be appointed as delegates to the Assembly, although churches were free to decide whether their own members were baptised or not. When formed in 1877, the Baptist Union admitted churches on the condition they practiced believer’s baptism only (and three other items). But in 1899, one church which practiced ‘open membership’ was accepted into the Union. This church only required a profession of faith for membership—there was no requirement for baptism of any kind, although the church did
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teach and practice believer’s only baptism. When formally constituted, it allowed the non–Baptists in its congregation to become members. (In those early days, there were a couple of other churches like this, but they did not survive very long.) When this anomaly was noticed by the Baptist Union, there was some very ‘energetic’ discussion! The result was the change to the constitution mentioned above, allowing open membership churches to be part of the Baptist Union, but restricting delegates to baptised people. At least one church left the Union as a result in protest! About the same time, the Baptist Union doctrinal statement was enlarged from four points to nine, using a document from Victoria. This statement, still in use today, said that baptism was ‘the immersion of Believers upon the profession of their Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and a symbol of the fellowship of the regenerate in His death, burial, and resurrection’. Later a ‘model constitution’ for member churches was devised and this nine-point doctrinal statement was incorporated into it. Under this
constitution, prospective members had to profess their faith in Christ and be baptised. Thus ‘closed membership’ was enshrined as the official position of the Baptist Union. In earlier times, there were many cases of spirited debate between Baptists and other churches on this topic, and many strongly worded sermon, articles and pamphlets were issued on the topic. Most churches followed this pattern of ‘closed membership.’ In fact, a recent survey of QB church constitutions carried out by the Baptist Church Archives, shows that about 60% of churches have adopted this position as their sole and exclusive pathway to membership. The remaining churches have adopted a variety of other positions. Only a very small number are exclusively open membership, that is, no baptism of any kind is required (some others allow it as an alternative mode of entry). Historically, many South Australian churches took this option, as do many in the United Kingdom today.
However, the survey showed a few churches who take a different approach. First, some link baptism with conversion through which the new disciple is incorporated into the universal body of Christ. However, they keep this very general and do not make the link with local church membership!
A few churches officially recognise the difficulties that health, and physical disability may cause for people to be baptised by full immersion, so they are prepared to consider alternative arrangements. Some churches also allow people who have been baptised as believers but not by immersion to join without any further action.
What is clear, is that most churches see baptism as a personal matter of obedience to the command and example of Christ. There is usually no strong link between baptism and church membership—typically, it is only suggested that new converts ‘should’ become members. In addition, baptism only looks back on an earlier conversion.
Another group of churches allows people who are already baptised in some other way to become ‘associate members’, which permits them to participate fully in the life of the church, but restricts them from some offices and voting on major matters.
This may explain figures quoted at the 2016 Assembly showing that there had been only a 2% growth in baptisms over a five-year period. According to a group of British Baptists, the New Testament shows conversion, renewal by the Holy Spirit, baptism and church membership are all part of the one extended process. So, baptism cannot be a matter purely of personal discipleship unconnected with church membership.
In some churches, prospective members who hold strong views about the validity of their own prior baptism can be admitted without rebaptism. In a more positive way, a very small number explicitly state that a current profession of faith can validate an earlier (infant) baptism. The recent constitution survey revealed that alternative approaches to church membership were often quite tentative, using such words as ‘may be considered’ or ‘does not exclude’. Usually it is the church leaders, not the members, who make the decision, but it is not known how many people become members under these provisions.
Then, a small number refer specifically to baptism being the outward sign of an inward spiritual experience. This is closer to the position of 17th century Baptist founder, John Smyth. He stated that infant baptism was false, because it separates inward faith from the outward expression, whereas believer’s baptism keeps them together while retaining the proper emphasis on both aspects. As such, baptism constitutes the church as a fellowship of believers, the fundamental Baptist doctrine. The constitution survey shows there is a bewildering variety amongst Queensland Baptists on baptism, but there are some views which, if developed, could bring a healthy change—and the statistics would no doubt improve also!
Baptist Church Archives firstname.lastname@example.org Phone 07 3354 5642, 07 3878 3178
QB.ORG.AU FEB/MAR 18 33
MALYON increasing number of eBooks (the entire book is available as a pdf document or similar) and electronic journal articles available as well. In many units, students are able to complete their assessment tasks entirely using these digital resources. Indeed, the rapidly developing technology is opening new avenues all the time. For example, Malyon is in the process of including video content and “webinars” in all of our units. A webinar is an especially useful tool where students and lecturers are able to join together in real time using internet based video-conferencing. It makes such a difference for students studying in remote locations to be able to see their lecturer and fellow students face to face and ask questions.
In fact, Malyon now offers some units only in online (distance) mode.
developing Christians of influence Twenty years ago, the only way Queenslanders could get quality Degrees in theology and ministry theological training was to come Bachelor to the city and| Masters study| Doctoral on-campus at a Theological College like Malyon. Students then spent hours trawling ‘Then I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will lead you with knowledge and understanding’ (Jeremiah 3.15). through books and hardcopy journals in the library trying to find www.malyon.edu.au information on their essay topics. How things have changed! Malyon now offers all units in online (distance) mode. We have students who study their entire degree (Diplomas, Bachelors and Masters) without ever setting foot on the college campus. Students study from remote (Arnhem Land) and distant (Africa) places, but even those on the Gold Coast find the flexibility of what Malyon offers appealing!
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For example, this semester, I am offering a unit called “Leading the Small Church,” which was designed from scratch to be studied exclusively online at a distance on the basis that many of our small churches are located in remote locations outside the SEQ corner. The hub of online learning at Malyon is a Learning Management System called a “Moodle.” Our Moodle is like a web page where students log in and find all the learning resources they need for their unit like notes, readings and videos. It is also the place where they interact with lecturers and their fellow students, submit their assessment and receive feedback. In addition, the library functioning is undergoing a rapid change. The library continues to send books to remote parts of the state so that students can read for their assessment, but there are an
The particular advance that has made this possible is development of technology that allows video conferencing over the internet, even when broadband speeds are relatively slow. It is ironic that many students who are in remote places in Queensland and even overseas (for example Thailand) have better broadband than some parts of SEQ. But even those in places with slow broadband are able to participate in our Webinars. Suffice to say that in the next couple of years, thanks to the roll out of the National Broadband Network, video conferencing will be a reliable and regular part of all Malyon’s theological training for every student. All people located in the remote regions of our far-flung state can now get serious about their study of the Word and ministry by studying online through Malyon. Praise be to God!
Ian Hussey www.malyon.edu.au
Joy for all people – all year round BY SARAH URMSTON- PRESS SERVICE INTERNATIONAL
I drove past a house the other day that still had a very sad-looking, deflated Santa figure hanging off the balcony.
We find joy in many things at Christmas time – gifts, food carols, time with family and friends, time to stop, relax, pray, be merry and just breathe.
Apart from the possibility it might raise awkward questions with children, my first thought was, “Christmas is over! Hurry up and take down your decorations already!”
How, in the midst of these things, are we supposed to just set them aside and smile because the pastor up the front of the church tells us we should? Or because the song blaring in the shop demands we embrace the “most wonderful time of the year”?
And just like that the season is done with, onward sweeps a brand-new year, and, along with the Christmas tree, we put away our tidings of comfort and joy.
True joy goes beyond Christmas sentimentality No, the answer is simple but deep. True joy – joy that lasts beyond Christmas and seeps into the everyday – is found by knowing Jesus, who brings us peace with God.
Christmas joy still lingering, I hope Actually, I hope we don’t. I hope the joy and peace found in the Christmas season is still washing over you today as you get into your work, your schooling, your home life, whatever season you are in.
True joy is knowing that “though Satan should buffet, though trials should come”, we are able to say, “it is well with my soul.” Joy through every day trials
Last Christmas I gave a little talk at a church Christmas craft event about why Christmas is so joyful.
overshadow everyday trials and tribulations. People still get sick at Christmas. People can feel lonelier at Christmas than any other time of year. Tragedy still strikes at Christmas.
Have you continued to remember the joy Jesus brings at Christmas?
But I also pondered the fact that for many, the season of joy cannot
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Ready…Set…Go! BY REV BOB ROGERS – STATE DIRECTOR Does the New Year “do” anything for you? Resolutions? Revising personal goals? Or, is it just another date on the calendar that has been swallowed up in the haze of Summer? I remember, as a teenager, several mates and I decided we would do something completely different on New Year’s Eve–we decided we would see if anything changed if we did not see in the New Year. We headed off to bed at 9pm and, next morning, we woke up to a day very much like the day before!
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Yes, the 1st January really is just another date on the calendar. However, it can be a useful time to look back and see just what we have achieved in the past year and, maybe, to set some new goals for the coming year. Have we noticeably grown in our relationship with our LORD Jesus? Here at the Queensland office of Global Interaction we look back on a wonderful year having direct input with over 70 Queensland Baptist churches. What a privilege it has
been to encourage Pastors, Missions committees and church folk in their efforts to see the Good News about Jesus reaching least-reached peoples of the world. In 2018, we have very specific goals we believe God has inspired. Our greatest goal is to see three candidate families departing Australia for their countries of calling. The Truloff Family (South East Asia), The Crilley Family (Cambodia) and The Manikariza Family (Malawi) families are all ready and set, but cannot yet “Go!” because they still require financial support. Our goal is to do all we can to inform our Queensland churches of this need. Another goal we have is to raise up more “Prayer Rooms” across the state. On the first Monday of
each month, folk gather to pray specifically for Australian Baptist missions. We thank God for the homes in South East Queensland made available, and we are seeking more homes across the state. We believe our Prayer Rooms have given us hope for another goal in 2018: to see folk raised up to serve God in Central Asia. For several years, Global Interaction has struggled to raise a team who will commit to serving God among the H people, a least-reached people group, where less than 1% of the population have heard about Jesus. Global Interaction serves in a very modern city and ministers through a local university. English has become the world’s preferred international language and our Central Asian neighbours are seeking teachers
of English in increasing numbers. We praise God that, during 2017, we saw an increasing interest by Queensland Baptists who are considering Central Asia as a place to serve God, both short and longterm. We are very excited at the prospect of folk hearing God’s call to these needy people. Are you considering cross-cultural service for God? Join with other Young Adults in June on a twoweek Global Exposure trip to South East Asia. You will meet and live among our workers and gain a deeper understanding of how Global Interaction conducts cross-cultural ministry.
in His world. Would you like to join us? Go to www.globalinteraction.org. au for further information, including upcoming events in Queensland. Would you like to invest in the ministry of our candidate families by praying for them regularly and supporting them financially? If God is leading you, please call our office on 07 3354 5625.
So, we are “Ready” and “Set” to “Go!” for another year where we see God at work among His people and
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SPEAKING OUT FOR A WORLD MADE RIGHT BY SAMARA LINEHAN On Saturday 11 February, Baptist World Aid Australia was in Brisbane for its 2018 Catalyst Launch. “Catalyst is a grassroots advocacy program that equips individuals and churches to speak up for the kind of world that God wants – a world free from poverty and exploitation,” explains Baptist World Aid’s Catalyst manager, Eliza Johnson. Catalyst groups meet regularly to learn and pray about issues of global justice, but, importantly, they also act. “There are currently about 60 Catalyst groups in churches
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across Australia,” says Mrs Johnson. “I am constantly inspired by the creative ways they find to raise awareness about issues of injustice in their communities, from movie nights to clothes swaps!”
In the year ahead, Catalyst groups will campaign on the issue of modern slavery in supply chains and take part in the Australian Baptist Church’s national domestic violence campaign.
And Catalyst groups are making a real difference.
“The theme for 2018 is Redeemed Relationships, for a World Made Right,” says Mrs Johnson.
“Over the last few years we’ve seen Woolworths and Coles commit to stocking more ethically certified Easter Eggs,” and we’ve seen our Government make huge progress on enacting a Modern Slavery Act in Australia – something we’ve been campaigning hard for”.
“Catalyst members will use their voices to stand alongside people who are victims of injustice, as we work with God to bring about a world made right”. To find out more about Catalyst or start a group of your own, visit baptistworldaid.org.au/catalyst.
please pray PERSECUTION BRIEF
SAUDI ARABIA, INDIA AND NORTH KOREA ALL HAVE THIS PROBLEM AND IT’S AFFECTING 215 MILLION PEOPLE Rankings of the top 50 countries where Christians are persecuted the most has been revealed by charity Open Doors Australia and in this year’s World Watch List report 215 million Christians have been identified as being impacted. North Korea ranked number one on the list and has done so for over a decade. The hermit kingdom which allows little freedoms for any of its citizens, puts additional resources into keeping Christianity at minimum. Afghanistan is a close second and the first of several countries in the list with Islamic extremism listed as the primary cause for persecution of Christians. Somalia, Sudan and Pakistan, third, fourth and fifth respectively, are all identified as having the same issue. The top ten countries in the list are: Country Rank 1. North Korea 2. Afghanistan 3. Somalia 4. Sudan 5. Pakistan 6. Eritrea 7. Libya 8. Iraq 9. Yemen 10. Iran
Pakistan while ranking fifth scored highest for violence against Christians and has long had an issue with religious minorities facing persecution. Nine Christians were killed in December when two gunmen wearing explosive filled vests broke into a church in Quetta City. Also ranking highly in the list is India where a major increase in violence against Christians continues. Christians in India represent a large minority of 63 million but is still a small community at less than 5% of the total population. Christians have been known to face horrific violence for their faith. Also in the list were popular tourist destinations for Australians – Vietnam, Indonesia and the Maldives. A very prominent case of persecution in Indonesia in 2017 was the case of former Christian governor of Jakarta Ahok. Ahok was convicted of blasphemy and sentenced to two years in prison. Some minor improvements have been seen in the Middle East this year. Syria last year ranking number 6 has fallen to 15. While Christians are still experiencing high levels of persecution in areas controlled by militants these groups have lost much of the territory they once held. The full list of countries is available now on Open Doors Australia’s website www.opendoors.org.au. SOURCE: OPEN DOORS
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SHAVINGS OF WOOD BY THOMAS DEVENISH - PRESS SERVICE INTERNATIONAL
There is something profoundly satisfying in viewing the results of a lifetime dedicated to a pursuit. Early mornings, late nights, furrowed brows and aching joints have brought about some of the finest achievements of humanity. A dancer displays our deepest emotions with agile limbs and nimble footwork, each movement refined and defined over years of searching for the perfect expression. A composer’s symphony lifts our hearts into higher realms, each note wending its way into a perfect crescendo of beauty. We don’t hear the scales practiced, the arpeggios run through time and time again. No, we just hear the result, and it is a marvelous thing. But I think it can be beneficial to remember the journey it took to get to that point.
THE MASTER CRAFTSMAN Recently I have been watching videos of an old woodblock printer at work, a master craftsman if there ever was one, carving each block of wood with a deft precision borne through years of learning his craft. The prints his blocks make are truly
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beautiful, but the process itself holds the most fascination for me. His knife cuts through the wood like butter, the blade sharpened so fine an untrained hand would snap it within seconds. The lines are intricate and delicate, mimicking the marks of a brush and leaving no hint of the hard wood from which they were carved. Woodblock printing involves carving multiple blocks of wood for each colour that will be used in the final print. The block has the lines drawn on it in reverse and then the craftsman carves around the lines so that eventually they protrude from the block ready to be inked and pressed onto paper. The process is painstakingly slow, each shaving of wood cut out with a meticulous hand that dare not rush for fear of cutting an unruly mark. There is no eraser, no undo, no putting the wood shaving back – each little piece taken from the wood is taken because it is supposed to go, leaving just the wood that will form the line.
This particular master craftsman has created countless works of art, improving and learning with each piece, building up a knowledge and skill base that few could rival. But, he is not done. There is still more to learn, more areas to improve, and there always will be.
THE PERFECT CRAFTSMAN I haven’t yet poured enough years into my craft to reach the status of a master craftsman, but even when I do, I know that I too will still be searching for that elusive perfection. As a human race we are insufferably imperfect, and strive as we may to reach perfection we always fall short. But there is a Perfect Craftsman, one who carves the perfect mark. Psalm 18 verse 30
“As for God, his way is perfect: The LORD’s word is flawless; he shields all who take refuge in him”
GOD IS CREATING HIS OWN MASTERPIECE, A PERFECT PICTURE
There are times when I doubt the work God is doing, times when I forget that I can’t see the finished picture. I can’t see the other woodblocks with the other colours; I can’t even see all the lines on my own woodblock. The knife hurts, cutting into my pride, stripping away my selfishness. Parts of me that I wanted to hold close are pried away, joining the shavings on the dusty floor. The great works of art and music I admire so much didn’t come about in a moment of inspiration; they were the apex of a journey of passionate dedication. A journey filled with hills and valleys, trials and fire. God is creating his own masterpiece, a perfect picture. And while the journey may feel far from perfect, my trust is in His perfect craftsmanship.
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WHEN GOD SAYS, “NO” BY AARON SABIO - PRESS SERVICE INTERNATIONAL
THE BIG LOVE EXPERIMENT
WHY GOD SAYS, “NO”
I love the privilege of prayer. I confess that I severely lack in my prayer life, and rarely practice diligent asking, seeking, and knocking. (See Matthew chapter 7 verses 7-8). But when I come to my senses, remember the power of prayer and partake in divine conversation, there always seems to be a bit of anxiety in waiting for the answer.
In the “no”, I’ve learned that God has something wiser, and purer for my life. Because God is All-Knowing, and All-Loving, I can trust Him even when I don’t understand the “no”. If God isn’t approving of a certain request, there must be another alternative that would give God more glory.
I get anxious because I don’t want God’s answer to my request to be “no”. To my fault, I selfishly desire my will over His. I am often blinded by my sinful prayers masked in spirituality with the hopes that God would not take notice of my evil intent.
Through daily bible reading, fellowship, and prayer, God has brought me to deeper level of trust. This trust in Him calms my anxious heart and restores an eternal perspective that God is in control. Though I may never understand the bigger picture until heaven’s gates, I can always trust the heart of God revealed in scripture.
In honest prayer and confession unto the Lord, I’ve learned contentment when He shuts the door and answers, “no”.
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My friend reminded me that when I cannot see God’s hand, I can always trust God’s heart. I like this piece of advice, because I rarely see God’s
hand in my life, until time has passed and the fog of uncertainty has dispersed.
LOVING THE, “NO” God’s, “no”, implies that there is something greater to be grasped. I can fight my bitterness, confusion, and frustration of the “no” with the excitement that God has something eternally better for me. The open doors and unknown adventure of God’s, “no” now inspires me to increase my prayer life and seek His better alternative. I learned to love the “no” because it tells me that there is a better “yes” waiting to be revealed.
KEEP ON PRAYING Dear Praying Believer, Do not lose heart. Keep on asking, seeking, and knocking. God is sovereign, wise, and full of unconditional love. He only gives good gifts to His children.
FAITH OF THE FLAWED BY JON POLK – THE PARK FORUM | WWW.THEPARKFORUM.ORG
Hebrews chapter eleven has often been affectionately and appropriately called, “The Hall of Faith.” Reading through this chapter, one can imagine a room full of biblical heroes each presenting their story much like Disney World’s Hall of Presidents exhibit. The roll call sounded here truly is a “great cloud of witnesses.”
sister. Not once, but twice. Sarah, like her husband Abraham, did not believe God’s promise that she would become a mother, and she even laughed at God. Isaac followed in his father Abraham’s footsteps and also lied about his wife being his sister.
These characters and their faith have served to inspire believers for generations. In fact, the purpose of this passage is to demonstrate how ordinary people overcame difficult situations through their faith in God. For some, though, inspiration can turn to intimidation and the thought of living up to the faith of these “spiritual giants” can seem a daunting task.
Noah, after the flood, once became so drunk that he exposed himself to his sons and then cursed some of their descendants. Abraham not only disbelieved God’s promise of children but also doubted God’s protection—fearing for his life, he lied about his wife being his
These are the ones lauded for their outstanding faith. There are even others, but we do not have the time or space to recount all the shortcomings of these very human and flawed “heroes” of faith. These women and men found their place in God’s story not because they were flawless and perfect examples of obedience. They didn’t always follow the right path and make the best choices. But to the best of their ability, in the midst of their circumstances, they acted in faith. They are applauded for their faith, because without it, we cannot please God.
However, there are only a few names on this list—Abel, Enoch, Joseph and Samuel—about whom the Bible records little, if anything, negative. For each of the rest, we have a record of some character flaw or significant sin in their life. •
even took credit for the miracle himself. Rahab was a prostitute. Samson was greedy, selfish, and had serious issues with women. David gave in to his lust, abused his authority as king, committed adultery and murder, and was guilty of trying to cover up the whole incident.
Jacob, jealous of his brother Esau, deceived their father in order to receive the family blessing. Moses murdered an Egyptian. He also later disobeyed God’s instruction regarding water from a rock for the people and
Scripture: Hebrews 11.1-2 To have faith is to be sure of the things we hope for, to be certain of the things we cannot see. It was by their faith that people of ancient times won God’s approval.
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FUN ZONE WHERE IS THAT LITTLE PIGGY? Sir-Save-a-Lot the Baplink piggy bank is hiding somewhere in the magazine. Can you find him? Congratulations! To all those who found Sir-Save-a-Lot hiding on page 46 (Dec/Jan 2018 Issue of The Qb Magazine).
WORD SEARCH Can you find the hidden words? They may be horizontal, vertical, diagonal, forwards or backwards.
Puzzle Choice www.puzzlechoice.com is the source of this Crossword.
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For solutions, visit Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/GaythorneOffice/
SUDOKU CHALLENGE Sudoku rules: Each row, column and block must contain one of the numbers from 1 to 9. No number may appear more than once in any row, column or block. When youâ€™ve filled the entire grid, the puzzle is solved.
NUMBER LADDER Can you climb the ladder and find the missing numbers? Puzzle Choice www.puzzlechoice. com is the source of this Number Ladder.
Sudoku puzzle provided by www.sudokuoftheday.com visit them and get a new Sudoku every day!
CALM SPOT - COLOUR
Summer Unjumble the words relating to Summer. Then unjumble the red letters to answer the clue. Clue: A summer treat? H E B C A P N I C M A G K A P R E L V A T R D F N R E I S I N S H F I G D I O A L H Y I P N C I C
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reviews BOUNDARIES: WHEN TO SAY YES, HOW TO SAY NO TO TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR LIFE HENRY CLOUD, JOHN TOWNSEND PAPERBACK: $19.99 AT KOORONG In this updated edition of the New York Times best-selling book, Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend have expanded their popular content to help readers develop clear boundaries as part of a healthy, balanced lifestyle in the digital age. If you’ve ever wondered: Can I set limits and still be a loving person? How do I answer someone who wants my time, love, energy, or money? Why do I feel guilty when I consider setting boundaries? Unpacking the 10 laws of boundaries, Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend give you biblically based answers to these and other tough questions, and show you how to set healthy boundaries with your spouse, children, friends, coworkers, and even with yourself. In Boundaries, Drs. Cloud and Townsend show you how to bring new health to your relationships. You’ll discover firsthand how to reclaim your freedom to walk as the loving, giving, fulfilled individual God created you to be. - Koorong
ALL SAINTS DVD: $49.99 AT KOORONG ALL SAINTS is based on the inspiring true story of salesmanturned-pastor Michael Spurlock (John Corbett), the tiny church he was ordered to shut down, and a group of refugees from Southeast Asia. Michael Spurlock was assigned the task of closing down and selling off a run-down rural church with a dozen members. But when the church welcomed Karen refugees from Burma, Michael felt called to an improbable new mission. Together, they risked everything to plant seeds for a future that might just save them all.
Designed to help readers fully appreciate Easter, this volume brings together fifty carefully selected excerpts from the classic works of beloved author C S Lewis. Each selection draws on a major theme in Lewis’ writings on Christian belief and the life of faith. - Koorong
GLORY SONG MATT REDMAN CD: $19.99 AT KOORONG
The two-time GRAMMY winner’s newest collection of songs explores a sonically diverse musical backdrop, including uniting with 120 local worship leaders and songwriters on group vocals and special collaborations. From Matt Redman - “My aim from the beginning was to bring a bit more of a ‘gospel’ sound to proceedings. Recently I’ve been inspired by worship leaders like Tasha Cobbs Leonard, but also so aware of how little our various streams of the church seem to proactively reach out and work and worship with each other. So this record hopefully still sounds like me, but you’ll also hear the likes of Tasha, Kierra Sheard and a gospel choir in the mix too” - Koorong
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PREPARING FOR EASTER: FIFTY DEVOTIONAL READINGS FROM CS LEWIS CS LEWIS PAPERBACK: $29.99 AT KOORONG
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Volume 16 Issue 1