On Sunday Ruth Davidson reflected over the aspect of following Jesus that involves compliance and looked at Philippians 2:1-8.
There are a lot of people who think that that’s all the Bible is about, rules and what you can’t do. A big bossy figure waving his finger and saying don’t do this and don’t do that.
In actual fact God is about offering us salvation, real joy, peace, sense of belonging, freedom – He is saying I can give it to you and what’s more I will help you be the person I created you to be. It will look different for each of us…but there is only one way to God and that is Jesus.
Last Sunday Riley Bertram shared that if we are truly following Jesus then this will involve the aspect of “confrontation” and shared from the Old Testament, in Exodus, where he outlined the life journey of a man named Moses.
We learn that Moses’s people, the Hebrews, are in slavery, under the cruel leadership of the Pharaoh of Egypt, who sends out an edict that all male Hebrew babies are to be killed. As a small baby Moses escapes the death sentence, via the intervention of Moses’s mother, the Pharaoh’s daughter and God’s guiding hand and miraculously lives in the palace of the Pharaoh.
All seems to be going well for Moses, until one day in a fit of anger Moses kills an Egyptian slave master and runs away. Many years pass and God instructs Moses to return to Egypt and confront the Pharaoh, with a message to let the Hebrew people go from the bondage of slavery.
As Riley pointed out that this would have been a very difficult situation for Moses, to return to Egypt and confront his past, but he did, with God very much travelling close beside him. As scripture tells us Moses, overcame his past.
Riley also reminded us all that we too need to confront our past and not hide from it, especially those events and areas in our lives that hold us back in our faith walk. God will journey with us, in these times, every step of the way. Thank you Riley for this wonderful message.
On Sunday 4 November I shared that if we are truly following Jesus then this will involve the aspect of “cost”. I shared from Luke 14, where Jesus has been attracting large crowds.
Jesus is recorded as addressing the crowd and challenges them that if they want to be considered as His follower there is a cost factor involved. He outlines a story about planning to build a house or in some translations a tower. It involves siting down and counting the cost before construction starts so the building can be completed.
May we take time out of the busyness of life and reflect over what this cost factor may mean for us. Our lives are very much like that construction. The Lord is continuing to transform us into His likeness so that His light may brightly shine through us.
This Sunday Aaron Gully will be starting a new preaching series, entitled “Following Jesus” and this will be our focus as we head towards the Carols in the car park, our outreach event on Saturday 8 December. Aaron reflected over Luke 9:23-25.
On Sunday morning, it was very special to have one of the Surrender key note conference speakers, Dr Tanya Riches share at this service. She is a researcher at the Centre for Disability Studies, affiliate of the University of Sydney, as well as being a lecturer at Hillsong College.
Tanya reflected on Luke 14:16-24 where Jesus told a parable about a man preparing a great banquet. When the invitations to attend were sent out some people gave weak excuses why they could not attend. Tanya mentioned that it was too late to cancel the feast, so the servants were sent out with fresh invitations from their master, all people were to come even those on the fringes.
As she explained the master is in fact our Heavenly Father, whose heart is to see His eternal house full of people. We as born again believers are His servants and are to continue seeking the lost and to keep issuing the invitations pointing them to Jesus, as there is still plenty of room in God’s kingdom. Thank you Tanya for a wonderful message.