Our Mission: To belong To grow To influence
A new Alpha course wil begin on the 8th of May contact office if you are interested....
- CHRISTMAS DAY SERVICE
Our Christmas Day Family service will be at 9am. Everyone is welcome to come and Join us....
- 2013-6 Thursday Service
We recently have started a Thursday Service fortnightly. It meets at 10am for a short service with some of the favourite older songs, followed by morning tea. Everyone is welcome....
- Cambodian Fellowship
The Cambodian Fellowship meet weekly on a Sunday at 5.30pm...
- 2012-7-1 Weekly Update
Thankyou for generous giving to the Cambodian Love Offering.
Courageous Living Mens Conference. A two day conference ...
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Pastor Ed's Blog
- Future Building Plans (July 2014)
Future building plans
Many pre-earthquake plans have been changed or altered post-earthquake. We have to adjust to change, the positive aspect is our challenge to create new thinking; learning new ways to grow.
Growth is a biblical mandate we carry at many levels. God called us from the beginning to multiply (Gen 1:28). Furthermore, the gospel was never intended to be stagnant, but a living challenge for us to spread to the whole world (Acts 1:8). The problem with growth; it costs time, effort and money. Often the very thing we don’t have. But if the challenge is birthed from God, He will deliver.
Our present challenge is to expand our existing site to its’ potential. We felt this has been a word from God for a long time and it seems right for us; post-earthquake, to move ahead. It is clear that our empty section must be turned into car parks. We struggle midweek to provide enough for our own use. We also struggle with our auditorium capacity. It is not large enough, and if we want our congregation to grow numerically; this is a must. The basic plan is to build over our existing auditorium using the driveway and some of our existing car parks. Our car parks on the empty section will compensate and also meet Council requirements.
We have submitted plans to our Town Planner who will now take this to the Council and apply for a building consent. This stage is simply a footprint with no architectural drawings. If this is successful, we will then call a meeting for the whole church to make further proposals and decisions.
You might ask; what is the point to grow more in numbers? Are we not happy with what we have got? Isn’t the money better spent in other places? There are many answers to these questions, but the root answer should always be around our mission. The strength of our overseas and home mission is dependent on the strength of our home base. Simple maths shows that size has something to do with mission.
- Kingdom of God Breaks the kingdom of darkness
Kingdom of God breaks the kingdom of darkness
John Wesley (founder of the Methodist) said; “I look upon the whole world as my parish”. If the world is the place of mission, the task of doing it requires much more than being awake. There are defined actions from the commission of Jesus: go and make disciples; baptizing them…… teaching them…..This task was never meant to be easy. Why? Jesus added at the end the comforting words:” I am with you always to the end of age “(Mt 28:20), posing the problem of despair we will face in the light of this challenge. Fishing for men and woman is not that easy. I’ve seen many come to Christ but many have got away. Sometimes it’s just catch and release. So what are we really facing?
Paul the Apostle warns the Ephesian Christians to take their stand against the devil’s scheme and the powers of the dark world and spiritual forces of evil (Ephesians 6:11,12). We are called to be ready like armed soldiers to do battle against evil. Yet we are also called to conquer evil with good (Rom 12:21), and love our enemies (Mt 5:44). When Jesus confronts us with loving our enemies, he is clearly referring to those who persecute us; it could be your colleague at work. Praying for them and blessing them is simply the first step toward salvation. People are not the real enemy, even if they behave like one. The real enemy is clearly the Kingdom of Darkness. The Kingdom of Darkness is full of piggy habits of selfishness. People adopt this deceptive kingdom and become captives to self-centred living. That’s why Isaiah predicts a new Kingdom, an eternal Kingdom with different values (Isaiah 9). This new Kingdom will be marked by the ministry of Jesus (Isaiah 61), breaking the hold from the kingdom of darkness. Jesus claimed his Kingdom in Luke 4: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free.
Linda and I will be visiting our missionaries in Cambodia, North Africa and England in September and October. We will be there to encourage them in this mission of God’s Kingdom, breaking the kingdom of darkness. This is no easy task, yet worth living for.
Pastor Ed Karlsen
- The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit
We applaud those who recently got baptized. Baptism is the affirmation of our faith, and the challenge to live a Spirit filled life. I cannot claim it is easy, but the Holy Spirit is available because Jesus made the promise (Jn 14:25-27). Many live by God’s principles, and although this is good; we are called to move deeper, and live in a relationship with the Holy Spirit. Over the years, I have grieved and quenched the Holy Spirit (Eph. 4:30), and on many occasions succumb to personal selfishness above what is right. The challenge is to get up again, and follow the Lord. The Holy Spirit started our relationship many years ago, and I have observed two things in this relationship:
He takes great pleasure in me reading the Bible. He glorifies Jesus
He likes it when I converse with Him
It takes approximately 80 hours to read the whole Bible and I think this is a good discipline. But for many, this is too difficult, especially if you are just starting. So I encourage beginners to read the four gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. There are too many Christians who are dwelling in other books or using “paraphrased bibles” instead of making the main text (the Bible), the main text. Nothing wrong in reading other books (I do all the time), but not at the expense of shelving the Bible, the real deal. I have my Bible on my smart phone as well, but it is not the same as the Book. Luke 6:45 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart….
How do we converse with the Holy Spirit? For me, it is about learning how the Holy Spirit responds to you. Naturally this is ongoing with new things to discover. If you take no time to converse with the Holy Spirit, it is unlikely that you will find any change in your relationship. Many say to me that they can’t hear God. Let me suggest; instead of doing your next holiday in your normal fashion, make your holiday with the purpose of hearing the Holy Spirit. Find a tranquil place, slow down, take your Bible, read some Psalms and you’ll soon discover the Holy Spirit has more to say. For me it is impressions, and most important is the presence of His peace. This is unmistakably God, the Holy Spirit. I also get the sense of His assurance and the overwhelming joy of His forgiveness and grace, and much more. Ephesians 5; 18… Instead, be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit.
- Prayer a lasting tradition
Prayer, a lasting tradition
I am currently a board member for the Canterbury/Westland Association. Our board is made up of 5 members who work with a Regional leader (Paul Askin), Youth leader (Mike Dodge), Children’s leader (Donna Reid), and an Administrator (Nicola Rosanowski). Paul and Nicola are vacating their positions, so we have been advertising for a Regional leader and an Administrator. Our roles are to resource and help Baptist Churches in our region to grow and be healthy.
Although this sounds like a business operation; there should be a family dynamic to our existence. Family fallout is a common pastoral issue most of us face; and thankfully we have some great guidelines of reconciliation through the teaching of Jesus Christ. The positive side of family is expressed in our desire to relate and rejoice in our successes and support those in need.
This year our Association have continued the theme of “prayer”; between Easter and Pentecost. I have also encouraged us as a church to include fasting. The Association have made opportunity of 40 days of prayer in weekly prayer sheets, available at our information desk. You can do one week or all 6 weeks. Each sheet gives you the privilege to pray for churches and ministries in our region. In addition there are Bible readings and challenging thoughts for each day.
Prayer has many shapes and various forms from active to quiet prayer.
Contemplative prayer or centring prayer which is a focus on a specific topic or word; all being valid forms of prayer. For us as Christians, we connect in prayer with our God, the Father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit. One of the most traditional forms of prayer is known as Lectio Divina; Latin word for sacred reading. This form of prayer has 4 separate steps, and you need a quiet place for meditation.
2)Meditate on the words (avoid turning it into a study)
3)Praying in words your response from the Scriptures
4)Contemplate and sense the response from God, resting in His love and presence.
Give it a go with Scriptures from our 40 day of prayer sheet, and be blessed.
- Growing in God (Feb 2014)
Growing in God
Last weekend we had an Elders retreat at the amazing lodge at Castle Hill. We revised some of our stuff from last year. We also spent time praying and seeking God for our future.
Growing as a church is not only numerical growth. We are well aware of the limitations we have due to our buildings, and we need to address this issue. However, growth can still take place.
Ministry growth, is in areas of deliberate ministries that we offer to our community; eg Mainly Music, youth, children and much more. Growth can be in the quality that we deliver, and the way we serve those around us. Ministry growth has a servant heart as the foundation for operation. (Mark 9:35)
Mission growth, is about people who respond to the gospel, and this growth provides opportunities. We appreciate new commitments to Jesus Christ, and look forward to more this year. Mission growth comes out of a heart for those who don’t know Jesus. (Luke 19:9,10)
Prayer growth, is both a personal and corporate commitment. We all know how important this is in terms of overall church growth. I’ve always found prayer more of a discipline than a desire, hence the difficulty of achieving. I’ve observed that prayer growth is a cultivated discipline.
Spiritual growth, is many things to many people, but for me, it begins with the awareness of the realm that is different from the physical. Secondly, we learn to operate in this realm. The Bible defines this realm as spiritual, hence the need for spiritual gifts. One way of spiritual growth is to exercise our spiritual gifts.
(1 Corinthians 12,13,14)
The above is a simplistic view of growing, and should be expanded. Our Cambodian fellowship is a good example of growth. The focus has not been on numbers, but growing in God and making stronger disciples. They have learned to pray for one another, and strengthen each other by serving their people. The two recent baptisms are signals of growth, and there are more to come. May the Lord anoint us for His service.
Luke 4:18-19 18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.”
Phone: 03 352 4227
Fax: 03 352 9818
Office hours: Tuesday to Friday, from 9 AM to 3 PM
Sunday Services: 10 AM