"For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the Lord, as water covers the sea.”
Can you imagine there being a day that the whole world knows, and loves, Jesus? It seems surreal to think about. Do you have people in your life without faith? Can you imagine them coming to Church with you, talking about prayer, or raising their hands with praise beside you? For me, those people are my family. I think their faith is in there, maybe, just hidden away under a few layers. I believe that they know of God, but do they really know Him? I pray all the time for them to truly experience His love and truth in their lives, but sometimes it seems like I’m making a wish as I blow out candles instead of praying in faith that this could be a reality.
Prophets, disciples and even Jesus himself tell us so many times throughout scripture that one day everyone will know God. Do you have trouble believing that this can happen? The scriptures, particularly around this time of Advent are used to stir our hearts for what is to come. Remember, Isaiah was written around 700 years BEFORE Jesus was born but he starts to tell a story to the people of the time (and us!) of the person, the saviour, who will be coming to us soon. These words spoken in Scripture aren’t just a high hope, or a maybe-this-might-happen. These words to us are a promise. Advent is a season that is supposed to peak our anticipation and excitement. Not just for baby Jesus to be born, but for what it actually means for Christ to come into the world, our world, and how we have been forever changed since! We can start by recognising our own need for a Saviour and keep preparing our corners of the world to be filled with the knowledge of the Lord.
This Sunday's Scripture readings:
ISAIAH 11:1-10 | PSALM 72:1-17 | ROMANS 15:4-9 | MATTHEW 3:1-12
Today marks a pretty important day in Australia - the Boxing Day Test. Whether you’re a Brit or an Aussie, I can guarantee that in homes all across the country people will be emerging from their Christmas Day food coma, nabbing the best seat on the couch and settling in for a long day of watching the cricket. Of course, tea breaks are the best time to throw in a water fight, play some backyard cricket or grab some leftovers from the fridge. It’s a time-worn tradition. But it's also important for another reason.
As a kid, I was stoked to be a part of Christmas Mass. All the children got to be angels, farm animals, and shepherds adorned in their mum’s tea towels and sheets. The older kids were chosen to be the wise men, and one girl got to be Mary. If you were in Innisfail in 2006 you would have seen the nervous face of 12-year-old me in the special role. Things have changed a little since then...
Do you know where the whole ‘Christmas tree idea’ came from?
Apparently the ancient Egyptians and Romans used leaves as a symbol of worship to their Gods. Pagans would bring evergreens into their homes during the winter months and decorate them with nuts to brighten the mood. There are several stories of how this transformed into the modern Christmas tree...
Have you ever heard the saying, “There’s no such thing as a new idea?” Well, this isn’t a new idea ... Even if it is an old idea, it is a good idea, so it is worth repeating.
Do you ever wonder if you are too young to lead? Or too old? Somewhere in between? If there’s anything I’ve learned about leadership it’s that each stage and age of leadership offers a unique perspective and a unique gift.
Students crash down from mountain top experiences because we focus on the journey up, not the journey back down to everyday life.
I don’t know about you but my post-conference week has been brutal. I miss you all. I miss chilling out in the festival with you, I miss the random conversations that start in the food line, I miss the rallies with the incredible speakers and I miss worshipping our God with you.
Love the worship of Ignite Conference 2017 and want to get it all in one place? Well here’s the list of songs that emmanuelworship played!
Yesterday someone asked me what I expected to get out of the Ignite Conference, and I didn’t have an answer. After working (what feels like 24/7) in the office and at home, I'd forgotten to stop, and prepare by heart. I’ve been working at such a rush, that I was actually preparing my heart to rush through these next few days, without even looking up.