Thursday, December 20, 2012

New Kid on the block.

(This is something I wrote 6months ago but still stands today as we look towards the New Year)
I greet you all in the Name of our Lord and King, Jesus.

Although it has been many a year since I was a kid, I do now feel like the new Kid on the block as I join with SGA Australia, who have been working for God among the Slavic peoples of Eastern Europe since 1965, and who are now seeking to expand the scope of their present ministry to include a new emphasis of being more involved in an evangelist ministry into the more dominant Muslim areas of the former soviet union.

 As you know, this is a task that is beyond any one group or organisation. That is why SGA supports and works through local pastors, churches and church organisations, already on the ground and operating in these countries and areas.

 Likewise, we at SGA here cannot do this task alone either and are dependent on God’s children to assist us in this vital ministry through your prayers and other practical support.

  As the new kid on the block, I have a lot to learn and will also be dependent on God’s people for their prayers and practical help, as together, we all work as one; encouraging, challenging and building one another up as we serve God together as one.

 In One Thessalonians 5: 17, we are enjoined to pray without ceasing, so  may I also ask you keep praying without ceasing for this work of God, and also please keep seeking God’s direction leading as to how He would have you further involved in this ongoing ministry too.
 At the moment I am trying to put together a visitation program where I will be able to visit with as many of you as is possible. So If you or your Church would like a visit from SGA and to hear more about the opportunities still available to reach the 90% of the 300,000 million people in this area yet to hear of the Salvation available to them in this area, please give me a c call or an email. Thanks.

 Your fellow servant in Christ Jesus, our saviour: Walter

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Bible and Dragnet

  At Church this morning, our pastor spoke on the first Letter to the Corinthian Church in our Bibles, and he made the point that the city of Corinth then, as bad as it was, was in reality no worse than any big city in the world today, including our own city of Melbourne.

 After the service I told him that I had also preached from this book/letter about 12 months ago and made the same point about Corinth then, being no worse than Melbourne now.  I then went on to say that if the Bible was written today, the stories would be exactly the same, only the names would be different. I then used the illustration of the old TV cop show of the 50’s which always prefaced each show with: "Ladies and gentlemen: the story you are about to see is true. Only the names have been changed to protect the innocent."

 To which the pastor replied along the lines, that that it was a great illustration, and one he might use one day, but not with the 6pm group tonight. Asked to explain, he reminded me that this was the youth service and that most of them wouldn’t know what Dragnet was!

 Anyway, later, thinking about the connection of the sameness of the stories in the Bible when written and the situations today everywhere, I couldn’t help wondering that if the Bible had been written in our time, where we would all fit in, particularly within a common story like that in the Book of Acts, as recorded from chapter four, verse thirty six to Chapter 5, verse eleven. Do read the passage for yourself and ask yourself, if this story was written today, whose name would your name replace in this story? Ananias/Sapphira? Or Barnabas?

 This way of reading the bible may sound strange to you, but in reality, should be the way we all read our Bibles. Not as an ancient history book, or even as a more ancient text book, but as a current living book that relates directly to the life of each and every one of us today.

 So in closing now, how are you going to read the word of God now? As it should be read? Or are you just going to continue to ignore it and its personal message to you and your life?

 The choice is yours, so please choose wisely.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

What have you begun before that needs finishing now?

 Was recently reading Second Corinthians 8 when I came across these familiar verses in verses 10 to 12: “10 And in this matter I am giving my advice: it is appropriate for you who began last year not only to do something but even to desire to do something— 11 now finish doing it, so that your eagerness may be matched by completing it according to your means. 12 For if the eagerness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has—not according to what one does not have.”

 Now of course I believe we all know that Paul was talking about a voluntary Collection for the poor in Jerusalem that the Corinthians had begun to put together but had still not completed a year later, but today I was wondering if we too do not have unfinished projects of our own that we have begun, whether last year or years before, that we too need to finish now?

 Yes, sadly, many people are sarcastically referred to as “Gunners”. That is that are always saying that they are ‘gunna do this’ or they are ‘gunna do that’ and often begin well but rarely finish.

 Again enough of them, what about you and me? Are we too “gunners”? Or are we finishers too? People and God are not interested in what we have begun; but only in what we have finished with what we have as verse 12 clearly states.

 So in closing, what is it that you have begun that still needs finishing, and when will you do it? T.O.W.G.P.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Have you really come out from among them.

Was Just reading from the Second Letter of Paul’s to the Corinthians, when this familiar passage took on a new emphasis to me, so I thought I would take the liberty of sharing it with you. Now 2Corinthians 6: 17 – 7: 1, says: “17 Therefore come out from them, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch nothing unclean; then I will welcome you, 18 and I will be your father, and you shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty." 1 Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and of spirit, making holiness perfect in the fear of God.” Looking at the text in 6 17, we see again that we were told to separate ourselves from our past sinful connections and, if we do, God will welcome us into His presence. Further, in 6:18, He promises us that he will be our Father and we His Children. Now this promise is not new to us nor to the Corinthian church I believe, but I can’t help wondering if we, like the Corinthian believers then, also even now, need to in the words of 7;1, to “cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and of spirit, making holiness perfect in the fear of God.” What say you? Yes like the Corinthians we have been saved and are now the Children of God, but have we, like them then, allowed ourselves to go back to our old ways again and thus need to cleanse ourselves again, from every defilement of both our bodies and our minds? So in closing I ask again: “Have we really come out from among them? Or have we allowed ourselves, perhaps even unknowingly, to slip back in to our old ways again, and thus need to come again to God in repentance for forgiveness of our backsliding? Over to you now for your reflection. And action if needed! T.O.W.G.P.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

An unexpected reminder of my past.

A couple of weeks back, I was going to a memorial service in Briar Hill, for a friend of some 30 years acquaintance. As I was going from Croydon, I decided to go to Warrandyte and go across to Research and then through Eltham. (A way I know very well but hadn’t travelled for some time now.) As I was doing so, and approaching Eltham, I noticed that the main street is now a 40 KM speed zone during daylight hours and so was thinking that on the way back I would go back through Templestowe instead of returning the way I came. Then, as I was driving past a group of Shops (where I had worked in a couple, at one time or another, back in the early 70’s) I saw something that made me decide to come back through Eltham again and even stop and check things out more carefully. When I worked there, there was A BP Garage and a small group of Shops set back a little from the road on one side. Next to the Garage was a fruit shop that used to be run by Ray Ferrari and his wife until he sold the business to the (then) young son of a greengrocer, and his wife, who later sold it to the owner of the nearby Health food store. Next was a Hardware shop, Then a Butchers, a Milk Bar, a Health-food shop, and finally, a Hairdressers behind the Health-food store, but down a lane. Today, the Hairdressers is a small cafĂ©, The Health-food store a Pizza Joint; The Milk Bar a Fish ‘n; chip shop, The Butchers, another Pizza joint, The Hardware store where I worked for quite a few years, is now a Thai restaurant, and The BP garage, is now the Community Centre. What was the fruit shop then, was apparently most recently a Real estate agency but now up for lease, and thus all the old signs had been removed from the front, leaving a tattered and peeling sign on the top of the Veranda that still easily reads "Parker's Fruitery”. Yes, some thirty seven years after we sold the business and it stopped being a fruit shop, our surname is once again briefly and publically on display. Just once again showing that not everything we put behind us, stays behind us and out of sight forever. Thus we should always leave a good name and reputation behind us knowing that the past can sometimes reappear suddenly and totally unexpectedly, many, many years down the track. I think that this is also a very good reminder to us as Christians too as we live in a more and more hostile world, to continue to give our best to God wherever we are and wherever we go, and not be silenced or intimidated by the world around us, knowing that we are leaving a good name for Christ, behind us both now and in the years to come should Christ continue to tarry. What say you?

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Looking for cans; and Christ sharing opportunities:

In our previous place of residence we had a reasonably large yard and thus our two small-medium size dogs didn’t need as many “walkies” then, unlike now in our “teeny-weeny, itzy bitzy “excuse for a back yard. Now over here, when you take your dog or dogs, for a walk you are supposed to pick up after them or be liable for a rather HEFTY MONETARY FINE. So, these days, when I take the Dogs “walkies”, (which is just about most days,) I take two empty bags with me. One for the ‘doggy doo’; and one for? Well! For many years now, one of my (two) brothers, has been picking up empty aluminium cans, and when he has a lot, takes them to a Scrap metal dealer and then donates the proceeds to two charities that he has been supporting for some years now. Now the rest of us aren’t so conscientious, but we do support our brother by saving our own cans and any others we come across, and passing them on to him. Thus now when I take the dogs out for their “Walkies” I usually collect any empty aluminium cans that I come across on my travels. Thus I am getting quite good at spotting empty Aluminium cans at 100 paces, when I am in the zone. Which I obviously wasn’t the other day when we went out. Although I did see a couple of obvious cans halfway through my walk, I couldn’t be bothered at the thought of carrying just two cans for the rest of the walk, and so left them for another time - if they were still there. Well the next morning I decided to cover the same ground again and if the cans were still there, pick them and any others I saw, up. Which I did! Although I covered the same area as I did the day before when I only saw 2 cans, this time I spotted (& picked up) quite a few others, both before and after the only two I originally saw. And from looking at these extra cans it was quite obvious that not only were they likely there the day before too, but there for many days too. Yes they were there, but because I was not looking for them they were not seen by me. True of a lot of things in life isn’t it? We often don’t see things we should see, not because they are not there, but because we are not really looking for them then. Non-Christians can stop reading here, but I couldn’t help but think how true that this is in our own personal testimonies of Christ too. As Christians we are supposed to be salt and light to the world around us by sharing with them what Christ has done for us, but so often we say we can’t do that because we never have the opportunity to do so. Well, I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that we in fact have many more opportunities to do so, than we claim, but because we are not looking for them, we miss all but the most obvious. So my brothers and sisters in Christ, I am going to encourage you today to lift up your eyes and your mind and see all the opportunities that you have to share with others what Christ has done and is doing in you. There is no need to “Bible-Bash” anyone, simply to share with all who will listen, what Christ has done for you and how He can do it for them too, if they will allow Him. So as I close, can I again encourage you to see the opportunities you already have to share with others what Christ has done for you, and then share it? Please.

Sunday, March 18, 2012


"Issumagijoujungnainermik" is another word for “forgiveness.” It is in fact an Eskimo word.
Yes, Moravian Missionaries to the unreached peoples on the edge of the icy northern polar region searched for a word for forgiveness in the local Eskimo language. That's when they discovered issumagijoujungnainermik, a genuine 24-letter tongue-twister which literally means 'not being able to think about it any more.'
That is what ‘Genuine forgiveness’ is all about! It is much more than just saying 'I forgive you', it's about moving on, refusing to think any more about what happened and in time forgetting about it completely.
It's easy to forgive someone who accidentally stepped on your foot, but what about those who meant to hurt you? . Genuine forgiveness is about moving on and refusing to think any more about what happened.
Have you ever witnessed a friend who continually has an issue with someone and just thought 'they really need to get over it'? Holding onto old hurts just makes you bitter. Paul says, 'Forgive...because the Lord forgave you.' Get over it before it turns into hatred!
So today if there is someone you do need to forgive, please do so but do do it within the full meaning of Issumagijoujungnainermik and give them full forgiveness, forgetting about it fully, and moving on never to revisit that spot again.
Remember, "Issumagijoujungnainermik", may sound foolish to you, but true forgiveness doesn't mean foolishness, not in any language.