Monthly Archives: November 2008

A Loving Tribute

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George King
06/09/1923 – 29/11/2008

My Grandpa died today he was 85. I want to pay tribute to one of the most amazing men I have ever known. My Grandpa was a quiet, humble man who was always kind, compassionate and gentle. He always saw the good in people and I don’t ever remember him getting angry. He came to live with us when I was just 3 months old, so I had the privileged of growing up with my Grandpa around and I couldn’t list all the things I have learnt from him.

In a lot of ways he has shaped me into the man I am today. I have so many fond memories of times spent with him. I remember when I was 3 my Grandpa making me a car out of a cardboard box and pushing me round the living room. At 7 he used to make me wooden swords so I could have adventures with pirates and Robin Hood. At 11 he helped me to build my first model plane from balsa wood and then took me to the oval to watch it fly. In High school he helped me understand chemistry, physics and maths. He even gave me money to help pay for my tuition while at Bible College, that’s the kind of man he was.

But the thing I am most grateful for is the way my Grandpa helped shape my faith. He was always there to teach me about God, Jesus and the Bible. I remember him reading me bible stories before bed time and answering my questions, no matter how silly or how tough they were. I remember watching him pray earnestly for his family, his friends and those that did not yet know Jesus. He would read God’s Word and share it with me. As I grew older he would challenge me with questions about my faith, teaching me how to understand what I believed. He was proud to have a grandson that was a pastor, who was serving God with his life and seeking to share Jesus with those who had yet to meet Him. 

My Grandpa was a true Man of God, a faithful servant of Jesus Christ and it showed through his actions and his life. I will miss him dearly, but I celebrate today because I know that Jesus was there to welcome him home with arms wide open, saying “welcome home, good and faithful servant. You have done well, come rest a while with me”

And as I write this with tears streaming down my face, I am determined that my life will be one that follows his example. I want to be known as a man of God, just like he was, my faithful, loving and amazing Grandpa.

I miss you Grandpa, but I know I will see you again in heaven. Until then I will serve our God faithfully and honour your example

Love always

Andrew

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What are you reading that’s changing your life…?

I’ve never been a big fan of reading books. I think it stems from my school days where they made you read books in English just so they could make you write an essay on them (that’s what it felt like to me anyway!) I was the kid who’d much rather be out playing sport or watching sport on TV than reading a book.

As I’ve got older I’ve begun to appreciate books more and more. I’m a practical kind of guy so I tend to prefer non-fiction books, ones that I can sink my intellectual teeth into and really learn from. At the moment I’m busy reading books that are rocking my world and challenging my thinking. My new found enthusiasm for reading led to me getting my eyes tested and I was told I need reading glasses, so I’m eagerly awaiting them so I can continue the book I’m half way through ;o)

The book that’s rocking my world at the moment is called “IT: How churches and leaders can get IT and keep IT” by Craig Groeschel. This simple book reminds us that in order to do what God wants from us we need to keep things real. We need to be authentic followers of God and remember that all we do should be for His Kingdom, His Power and His Glory. Life and ministry is about expanding God’s Kingdom not our own and Craig offers some very practical tips and examples on how to do that. Craig’s 4 main points are:

Keep a laser focus

People and churches that are following God’s will, that are totally in the place where God has for them, that have ‘IT’ have a laser focus. They seek God for the specific tasks He has for them to do, right here right now. They focus on doing a few things with excellence rather than a ton of things just average. They throw all their passion, enthusiasm and drive behind those things God is calling them to do and they do them with excellence

See opportunities where others see obstacles

You will very rarely hear people and churches with ‘IT’ saying “if only we had more money/bigger hall/more staff/theatre seating/etc…etc… THEN we could do amazing things for God…” . They know that Gods has already given them everything they need in order to do the tasks He is calling them to right here right now. Craig states than God often guides by what He doesn’t provide. We should be looking at what we have been given and how we are to use that for God’s glory.

Failure is not an option, it is a necessity!

People and churches that have ‘IT’ are prepared to fail. It is through our failure that God will teach us what works and what doesn’t and guide us to the task He has for us. God uses our failed attempts to train and hone us for the task ahead… imagine the things we would have never learnt in our lives if we hadn’t failed! As leaders and Christians we need to find our assurance in the Truth, we are Children of God. We need to shake off the failure, criticism and hurtful comments that often come with failure and step up, learn from them and move on. Craig’s key phrase here is; Shake it off and Step Up!

Ministries that have ‘IT’ have leaders that have ‘IT’

We need to be authentic followers of God, focused on seeing His Kingdom expanded, not our own. It requires us to be passionate followers of God, who will do anything to see His Kingdom grow (rather than ‘our’ churches). If we are following God, seeking Him and have ‘IT’, our ministries have a great chance of having ‘IT’

The good news is that God wants us all to have ‘IT’ and He wants to give ‘IT’ to us. We need to seek God for His will, purpose and direction for our lives and our ministries… the challenge has been issued!

I’m praying that God will continue to give me the courage to let Him rock my world, challenge my thinking and allow Him to transform me to be more like Jesus.

What about you? What are you reading at the moment that’s rocking your world?

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Filed under God Stuff, Life Coaching, Worship

Global Leadership Summit 08

I had the amazing privilege to attend the 2008 Willow Creek Global Leadership Summit last weekend and it was a huge blessing!

Each year through the Willow Creek Association the Summit is held for all those who lead in Christian ministry to come together and hear from some of the best leaders God has serving Him and His people from around the world. I went not really knowing what to expect but with an expectant heart that God would speak to me and I wasn’t disappointed. I learnt SO MUCH that I’m still processing it all.

For me the biggest encouragement was to know that there are others our there who believe that following God is an active choice and that God requires us to get out there and seek opportunities to serve Him and the community in order to share the Gospel. Something I have been struggling with is the propensity of Christians to choose to play it safe, to attend their safe churches not really wanting to get out into the community and make a difference for God because we are so comfortable with how things are. I was challenged as a leader that we have a huge responsibility to LEAD God’s people passionately in line with the things that God is passionate about. It’s God’s job to change the world not ours, all He requires of us is to get off our butts and get out there and lead His people in service.

Being passive is not an option in God’s Kingdom, regardless of your personal persuasion or personality type, God requires us to actively seek Him and then to seek the opportunities He has for us both individually and as His church.

If you get a chance to attend a Global Leadership Summit, take it you wont be disappointed but be ready for God to shake up your world!

I hope to post more in the coming weeks and months as God continues to teach me so stay tuned!

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Filed under God Stuff, Life Coaching, Worship