G'day From Steve

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G’day from Steve,

November 8th, 2010|

The spirit of scattering

There is one who scatters.. yet increases more. And there is one who with holds more than is right, but this leads to poverty. He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed. Proverbs 11:24-25

The one thing that has amazed me with every town we have visited on the Heritage tour has been the hospitality and welcome we have received in every region. The thoughtfulness of the local churches and people who have been praying for the concert and believing for miracles to happen. That amazes me!! We have been so blessed by the Lord through His people everywhere. Although our time in a town is usually one or two days we thank the Lord for the relationships and many expressions of giving we experience. Generosity is infectious. Once you have been given much you simply want to pass on that same spirit.

Sometimes you can hold on to stuff for way too long instead of giving it away and it ends up being worthless to anyone… just like a rusty old car in a field that could have been made useful to someone in its day.

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G’day from Steve,

October 31st, 2010|

Adapting to your environment

Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage–with great patience and careful instruction. 2 Timothy 4:2

You meet some interesting characters out in the desert regions of Australia. Not all of them are people. I met this shingleback lizard at Eucla the other day. Like a creature from a pre historic age.. his hissing threats and gapping jaws caught me by surprise. Some how this short legged, stumpy tailed, slow moving, blue tongued lizard with a mean bite has survived for thousands of years and adapted to some of the harshest climate conditions on earth.

God has created us all to adapt to where we are. To reflect His radiance and glory wherever we are. “Christ in us.. the hope of glory!”. The apostle Paul knew the importance of adapting to the environment, of using the right words before the people he was reaching, whether in prison or in places of political and religious power, he did his best to win as many people to faith as possible. Presentation is everything. Don’t be an irrelevant, out of touch, ignorant ambassador for Jesus Christ. Don’t play church. Be real and be relevant. Share in the wonderful blessings God has for you in taking the gospel to your generation and culture.

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G’day from Steve,

October 25th, 2010|

The Gospel of Grace

As far as the east is from the west, so far as he removed our transgressions from us. Psalm 103.12

The unconditional love of God is an amazing attribute we need in our lives. To be able to live with His forgiving and empowering love for people every day. Choosing to never recall the sins others have done towards you, knowing that is what Christ has done for you. There is some stuff you will never fully understand this side of eternity… so best to leave it in the hands of God’s grace and get on with things that really do matter. When God forgives… He forgets. He will allow us to work through the consequences of our decisions but He is all about restoration, not condemnation. He is a God of redemption and salvation and Jesus is the greatest example in all history of that very truth. Even as He hung on a criminal’s cross He was asking the Father to “forgive them for they know not what they do”.

Forgiveness is sweet and brings about freedom while to choose not to forgive cripples your soul and imprisons you in bitterness. God’s way is to give way and allow His purposes to be fulfilled in your life. I love that. The Gospel is a message of Grace and forgiveness in a broken and dying world. Let us be the people who live out that Grace every day.

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G’day from Steve,

October 17th, 2010|

Honouring the Past

Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commands. Deut 7:9

In 1975 the world changed forever for the indigenous people’s of Australia and Papua New Guinea. The Labour government of the day lead by Gough Whitlam abandoned our south Pacific neighbours by giving the fledgling nation its independence. Over night PNG was taken over by corruption, greed and foreign control… it was no longer under our security and the alliance that had seen many victories together in the past. PNG has never fully recovered from our rejection and today is still in great need of a proper education system, medical care and law enforcement. It is a poverty stricken nation in many ways.

In that same era the church missions that were established in the early 1900’s throughout the vast outback regions of Australia were told by the government to hand over control of the tribal missions and towns to the government. Many of these early church missions had been places of refuge for Aboriginal people who were being hunted down and killed by settlers and land owners. It was a shameful episode in the pages of our history. I am convinced there would be no Aboriginal people existing today if it were not for the mercy and brave actions of many church missionaries from those days.

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G’day from Steve,

October 10th, 2010|

Trucking for Jesus!!

Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.
During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear. But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” Matthew 14: 22-27

We just ticked concert number 40 off the National Heritage Tour concert schedule. An amazing night in the city of Geraldton, Western Australia. The day started with our team being invited to take the morning worship service at Sun City Church. I preached from Matthew 14 on the obedience of the disciples after they had served Jesus all day feeding 12,000 people on the shores of Galilee. They would have been exhausted and fatigued by the days end, only to be asked by their leader to get in the boat and sail across to the other side of the massive sweet water lake. A journey that would take hours even for a seasoned fisherman with favourable conditions. But they obediently boarded the vessel not knowing they were heading into a night of violent storm and fear. They obeyed.

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G’day from Steve,

October 4th, 2010|

Those who know their God shall be strong and do mighty exploits. Daniel 11:32b

Mighty Exploits

I am reminded almost daily that God loves to use me for His kingdom work… despite me. He knows me for who I am.. He knows my weaknesses and my failures, my fears and insecurities, my past sins and bad decisions….yet He has promised in His word that He will fill me with His power if I am willing to humbly open my mouth and preach the mystery of the Gospel. Every week people are coming to Christ through the Heritage Tour concerts. Every week we hand out bibles to those wanting to believe and follow Jesus. We take time after each event to personally pray with those seeking God’s help in their lives. It is a precious work….. And God calls us to do it. Some people spend decades of their lives training and preparing for the ministry but in my Bible Jesus sent His disciples out to do the work and learn as they go. Theology is dead if it is not put into action. It becomes restrictive, ritualistic religion rather than a life of faith and adventure!! So as you grow in your walk with the Lord make sure you set out to do mighty exploits! Think bigger than yesterday!

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G’day from Steve

September 28th, 2010|

The Great Commission of Christ.

A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband is full of confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, no harm, all the days of her life. Proverbs 31: 10

If we are genuinely convinced that this life we live is only the beginning, only the preparation stage of God’s eternity.. then we probably need to do “less talk and more action”.

I thank the Lord for a wife who loves to complete what she has started, to finish well. When Kerrie and I first came up with the idea of the Heritage tour is was a humble plan to take the Heritage Hymns CD and sing the songs in churches across Australia. Then our boys got involved and the whole venture became a major project with a team of 24 on the road for 4 months and 23,000 kms of road travel and 76 concerts plus High Schools and prisons and churches etc etc. Yep…. it became a major venture of faith.

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G’day from Steve,

September 19th, 2010|

Another night, another town.

Then Jesus went around teaching from village to village. Calling the Twelve to him, he sent them out two by two and gave them authority over evil spirits.These were his instructions: “Take nothing for the journey except a staff—no bread, no bag, no money in your belts. Wear sandals but not an extra tunic. Whenever you enter a house, stay there until you leave that town. And if any place will not welcome you or listen to you, shake the dust off your feet when you leave, as a testimony against them.” They went out and preached that people should repent. They drove out many demons and anointed many sick people with oil and healed them. Mark 6: 6-12

No two towns or concert venues are ever the same. Every event is unique from load in to load out. Night after night the concerts all take on their own characteristics and appeal. After a long drive from Alice Springs we rolled into Tennant Creek, once famous for gold mining and as a strategic military base back in WW11. A classic Outback town with the main north/south road running through it.

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G’day from Steve,

September 12th, 2010|

The spirit of the Lord.

“The spirit of the Lord is upon me, for He has anointed me to preach the good news to the poor, to proclaim freedom to the captives, recovery of sight to the blind, Release for the oppressed and to proclaim the year of God’s favour”.  Luke 4:18

These words Jesus spoke out after 40 days of testing in the wilderness are words that you and I can own in our hearts. If Christ is truly in our lives then these words become the mandate by which we live, knowing that these things will be accomplished in us and through us miraculously by the presence of the Holy Spirit.

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G’day from Steve,

September 7th, 2010|

Serving the Church across Australia.

From week to week we have the privilege to do concerts in many different venues. Each with their own acoustic qualities… or the opposite to that. Each venue with its own style, standards and expectations. The team has to learn to become all things to all people and serve accordingly. It is a great test of character and stamina. The band has to learn to play to the room and relate to the audience which can change in age or cultural demographics or even spiritual understanding. It’s all part of itinerant evangelism and winning people to Christ.

What may work well in one city will be completely irrelevant in the next. That’s the great challenge of being involved in a traveling ministry. Learning to listen and discern what is going on in the community, so that your message connects with people’s needs. I love the challenge. I am forever asking God… “What do you want to say to these people in this particular part of the country?” So I ask myself these questions….

1. Who is your audience?
2. What is your time span?
3. What is your strategy?
4. What are your expectations?

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