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is to worship God, and to glorify Him, through caring, equipping and mobilising people for mission.

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Living God's Story Together

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St.Marys SA 5042

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    Fathers Day

    Thursday, August 29, 2013


    With Fathers' Day occurring this Sunday I have been looking for examples of Fathers in the Bible. The first human Father was Adam. He had God as a role model but he slipped up and the sin corrupted the world. Noah was a father who obeyed God in spite of all the wickedness that flourished around him. Abraham was anointed by God to be the Father of all the nations. He made mistakes, as all fathers do, but still embodied the character that all Fathers would benefit from. King David was truly a struggler - an adulterer and a murderer. He sinned in many ways, but repented and found forgiveness and favour from God. Joseph was the adoptive Father of Jesus. He went to great lengths to protect Mary and baby Jesus. He ensured that Jesus had an education and learned a trade.

    Most importantly there is God the Father. When we acknowledge Him as our heavenly Father, our provider and protector, it gives our life a whole new perspective.

    For some people Fathers' Day is a great time of thanking their Dad for the role and impact he has in their life. For others it is not such a good time as they haven't been blessed with a good relationship with their Dad. Fathers' Day can often be an emotional time for many people. Sadly some men have not been able to be parents, some have experienced the loss of children and others have experienced growing up with their fathers not present in their life. Others may have experienced the death of their father. It is important that as a church family we endeavour to be aware of our brothers and sisters who may be struggling on the day.

    When I look around EBC I see some wonderful examples of Fathers, both young and older, and it gives me cause to reflect on my relationship with my own Father. I must confess that I have envied the relationship some men have with their children. Unfortunately I didn't have a good relationship with my Dad. We made some steps towards reconciliation before he passed away just over twenty years ago. Our relationship was always negatively impacted by his alcoholism, however as an adult, I was able to come to an understanding as to why he struggled with his awful addiction.

    Please pray for all Dads, that they will have the strength and courage to be the Father their children need and deserve.

    Please also remember the Harmony seminar which will take place on September 21st. It is a great opportunity to fellowship with other couples in the church.

    Next Monday night will be the webcast promoted by the Australian Christian Lobby. It features prominent Christians discussing the upcoming Federal Election. It will take place here at EBC Monday 2nd September at 7 pm. Please be here by 6.45pm.

    This Sunday we will be having a number of parents dedicating their babies to the Lord.

    Travis will lead us in the final sermon in the 'Balanced' series.

    See you in church...........

    Barry

    Barry Bennett

    Pastoral Assistant





    The Power of Christ and our Christian Influence in Friendship

    Thursday, August 22, 2013


    We have for a time now had been praying for the Muslim World. It was a thirty day of prayer for God’s blessings in the lives and affairs of people from countries in the 10/40 window. These were communities of people like us who have been displaced because of war and disasters, seeking for refuge and a place of safety to start a new life, to live in peace in another city or country.  Not only those who suffered persecutions and hardships are seeking opportunities for a better life and tranquility in another country, but also the scholars, students and skilled individuals looking for jobs overseas and in this land which they consider and call Australia home.

    Like the many privileged families who came to Australia, we are just one of them who made it by God’s grace alone.  Through the Christians who shared God’s love to us the day we settled in Adelaide in 2004 and accepted us as members of the EBC Family, it was a joyful experience.

    As I reflect on things that matters most to me now, that is how I would treat those whom I meet daily from another country, another culture, religion and beliefs. As Jesus Christ’s disciple, how will I show God’s love towards someone who is new in the country, and different to what I believe? I was reading the 30 days of prayer for the Muslim World 2013 and this article from Mission Canada grabbed my attention:

     “Welcome newcomers: hospitality opens hearts”

                Jack fled. A brother had informed him that he would be poisoned. Jack’s father – a Muslim cleric—had discovered that his 17 –year old son had become a follower of Jesus. A few years later Jack arrived in Canada to pursue theological studies. Extreme loneliness and the pain of being a newcomer without a family in a strange land haunted him.

    War, ethnic conflict, religious persecution, natural disasters and the longing for freedom and opportunity are just some of the reasons why people uproot and come to North America. How do these unprepared newcomers fare in a foreign land, where often they are not really welcome?

    In 2008 a newcomer centre (which Jack helps at) opened in Canada. The idea was simply to welcome Muslims and give them practical assistance in their new country. Friendships were forged as the newcomers got help with home-building, child care, tutoring, homework, or to learn English. Today, baby showers for new mothers, football camps for boys and girls and community festivals for the whole family are but a few more things the centre does to welcome newcomers.

    Heart- to- heart connections are made as Muslims begin bonding with their new Christian friends. Some have already become followers of Isa Al-Masih (Jesus the Messiah). Others are on the pathway to the Prince of Peace. The seed of the gospel is being planted as the international team ministers to them.

    San was in training to become a Muslim cleric. At the age of 22 he became a follower of Jesus. His mother considered him dead. She buried him. Today, San is a member of the international team that is working with newcomers.

    Many of the people that San meets at the centre, come from his home country. His mother, still living back in Africa, is now proud that her son is helping his people survive in a foreign and strange land.

    {Befriending Muslims is the best form of outreach}

    We are privileged as a Church to have facilities. And they were given to us for the gospel outreach. Like San in the story above, Nasser (from Libya) and Sakiko (from Japan) became followers of Jesus whilst in Malta. And both of them have been bringing others from both countries to Jesus through their friendship. Nasser’s contacts of Muslim families from Libya are coming to this property and are having family gatherings at the Community Centre occasionally on Saturdays at 4pm. Helga, Sakiko, and some other women would meet with the women and children while the men play indoor soccer at the gym with Nasser, Johnny and Sunil at 6:30 pm. These families have expressed their gratitude saying “Thank you for making your facilities available for us to use and hope you’ll allow us for a long period”.   How shall we respond? By coming on Saturdays either to play or just being there to share Christian love and letting them know that we care like Jesus cares for them.

     

    Edwin Del Pilar

    Pastor, Multicultural Ministries





    In a Mission for God

    Thursday, August 15, 2013


     

    I have been watching “The Bible” TV series every Tuesday and I think it is awesome to have the message of God broadcast in prime time television.  For me it only means one thing, the message of God will reach more people around the world.  Last month, when I arrived at my other work, at the Vietnamese Community, my manager and four other co-workers asked me to sit down for a moment because they had some questions for me.  So I sat calmly and thought in my head “Here we go, what is it the problem this time?”.  My manager started the first question and she said “We know you are a pastor and we want to know more about the Bible and God”.  I looked at the five of them staring at me and asked, ”What do you want to know?”  One explained that they had been watching the Bible TV series and wanted to know more why God allowed all those things to happen (they were referring to Moses and Pharaoh, God striking the first born of Egypt; then the scene with Sodom and Gomorrah)  WOW!  I had to quickly gather my thoughts in excitement and bring them back to the context of the story.  The discussion about God and His love for us took more than an hour with these five colleagues of mine who are foreign to God.  The discussion ended with me challenging them to investigate and read the scriptures.  But anyway, they asked if it’s OK with me to have another follow up discussion as they continue to watch the series, and I said, “YES!”  Praise The Lord!

    The Lord reminded me that as disciples we are to be ready “in season and out of season” (2 Timothy 4:2).  We don’t know what is around the corner, but it helps if we continue to remind ourselves that we are in a mission for God; and we are ready to testify for Him anywhere and anytime.  One thing I can assure you, people who do not know God are watching us.  So I encourage fellow disciples to be ready always for Christ.

    Back here at home, I am so thrilled to learn much about balance in life. I am so enjoying to be reminded from the pulpit and the DVD’s at night that all we have belongs to God.  All that we have is a blessing from Him.  I like what Andy Stanley said “God does not want something from us (our finance and stuff means nothing to him) but God want something for us, by giving His only Son for us to have life eternal (our soul means everything to Him)”.  What a fantastic reminder!

    This week, we look forward to hearing Tom as he teaches us more from the Balanced series.  In the evening we have the DVD from Andy Stanley.  Enjoy the Balanced series and have a great week ahead of you! God bless! 

    Julio

    Julio Alejo

    Pastoral Care Pastor

     





    Back in the Black - Balanced

    Tuesday, August 06, 2013


    When was the last time you heard anyone teach at church on the subject of debt? Yet for most of us debt is a reality of life. It is the rare person who is able to buy a house or purchase a car without it. Most of us have credit cards and many of those cards are maxed out and smoking from use! Retailers depend on us to use debt to keep them in business and encourage us to buy whatever we want. No cash? No problem! Get it on credit interest free! Most western economies rely on debt to keep on rolling. (We won’t talk about entire countries that have gotten themselves trillions of dollars in debt.)

    Does the Bible have anything useful to say on the subject? Why does it happen? What does it say about our view of God? What are the consequences to our life of discipleship? Is there another way?

    Debt is one of those things having the potential to throw our lives completely out of balance. This Sunday we will continue to seek out God’s perspective on our finances. I will be preaching in the morning. Then in the evening we will again be using the DVD series “Balanced” by Andy Stanley. Life groups will also be discussing the same material during the week. So there are several levels at which you can plug in. Hope to see you in the black!

    Tom

    Tom Golding

    Principal, ACM







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