At our Church Camp this weekend we watched a Ted Talk by Brené Brown on "The Power of Vulnerability".
A lot of the time Christians view heaven as the goal or something to aim for in the future. "If I live a faithful life, or do the right things I’ll get the reward in the end." I’m reminded of the call for us to be a part of God bringing heaven to earth, not to live right and make the grade. When Jesus came he spent a lot of his time telling the religious, that they were actually missing the mark. God is interested in our hearts being prepared for the "new age to come," not in being good enough to avoid eternal damnation when we finally cark it! He’s interested in our character development, not us ticking the right boxes. A question I read the other day reminded me of this goal. When heaven comes, will our hearts be ready for it? Would we get in with our hearts in their current state?
When I think about youth ministry, I get excited by that goal; to Partner with Jesus in bringing his kingdom and helping to shape hearts. A job for parents, youth leaders, elders, mentors and friends alike. In every aspect of our lives we have the chance to join with Christ in his mission. The chance to search, to prepare and to encourage all to be transformed by the renewing of our minds, into the likeness of our Lord and into people who highlight God’s kingdom today!
The next seven days could be a really significant time in our local community! You may have noticed that all the church buildings in Karori have similar signs outside them – saying “Miracles Happen”. Do they?
Last week Mike’s sermon called us out of stuck places… into… what?
I think the following words are inspiring and enlivening.
A Time to Dance, by Henri Nouwen
To heal is to let the Spirit call us to dance.
Can you feel the freedom that rises up in you when you have been stripped naked and have nothing to inhibit your movements anymore? You can dance as David danced in front of the Ark. Can you notice in your innermost being the joy of living that comes from having nothing left to lose? Can you see the soft, beautiful smile that appears in the tearful eyes of your mourning friend? Jesus enters into our sadness, takes us by the hand, pulls us gently up to where we can stand and invites us to dance. And as we dance, we realise that we don’t have to stay on the little spot of our grief but can step beyond it into unknown, spacious territory, until we finally know that the entire world is our dance floor. Yes! Leave – leave your father, mother, brother, sister, friend; leave your nets – and you will have many fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, and friends; all the world will be yours, and you will catch people wherever you dance.
Very simple note this morning. Just wanted to send my gratitude to those who so graciously gave money to help young people attend the recent BYM Bus Tour. Apart from the obvious fun times that were had; Luging, Swoops, Jet Boats, and Bungy jumps, I was amazed at the way God encountered our young people. There was a real move of the spirit over the week away. So a massive thank you to those who made it possible for our young people to experience God.
In about a month’s time, there will be two special meetings in Karori focusing on prayer for healing. These services are being organised by the Karori Combined Churches. They will take place on the evenings of Wednesday October 30th and Sunday November 3rd, at St Teresa’s Catholic Church, and will be led byFather John Rea, a Catholic priest with a ministry of healing prayer.