A Window into 2018

As you look out of the window of your life into 2018, what do you see?

I love crossing the threshold into a New Year. It is a powerful symbol of the grace of God in our lives. One writer called it the “shutting of a gate”, and by this he meant that what is passed is passed, and we can only walk forward into the year ahead. For those who follow Jesus, there are no “good ol days”,for the best is always yet to come. The life Jesus calls us to is lived in the present, with eyes on the future. God can, and does forgive our past sins and wasted days, so we walk forward in Christ’s abundant grace and mercy. Jesus is always making “all things new”. Hallelujah! 

So here’s an idea or two…

If you fail to plan, you plan to fail; and, if you aim at nothing, you will be sure to hit it. The truth is that many people are negotiating life with the attitude of “how can i do life with the least amount of effort and discomfort?” If comfort and a pain-free life is your aim, then be inspired by the cemetery; there’s no pain or discomfort there! Jesus taught us to embrace pain, to embrace self-sacrifice, to embrace hardship as necessary elements to a vital and full life. 

So what are you seeing as you look out the 2018 window? Maybe you are looking for work or considering a job change; perhaps you are fearful about the health or circumstances of a loved one or friend; maybe you are getting married; or are you concerned about your financial situation? Whatever it is, God wants to help you and bless you. So put yourself in an environment and attitude to take hold of God’s help and grace. In God’s grace to us in Jesus, consider these 4 elements for your spiritual life in 2018:

  • Grow: where do you need to grow and what spiritual practices do you need to embrace to grow spiritually in Christ?
  • Gather: who are your companions on the journey and are you invested in a spiritual community of Jesus followers regularly?
  • Give: How are you sharing and being generous with the gifts of time, talents and finances God has given you?
  • Go: Who are you reaching out to in Christ’s love and word, and are you seeking to make Jesus known locally and globally?

I would love to meet with you and talk with you about your plans and hopes for 2018 and support you in growing in Christ. Just ask! But don’t let the year pass thinking “business s usual”. God ALWAYS has so much more for us than we can ask or imagine. 

I don’t know if you noticed, but lately the world is pretty much going mad. So what is needed more than ever are sane an peaceable followers of Jesus that are living and sharing a different and compelling story of love, forgiveness, welcome and hope. 


Advent: Spreading the Word

When they [the shepherds] had seen him [Jesus], they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. Luke 2:17-18

Last Sunday night (3 December) the Kew Community Carols took place. Due to extraordinary weather, the event was moved from Petrie Square to our own church building. For many years carols has been a great opportunity for people who wouldn’t normally enter a church to hear about God’s great gift to us in Jesus Christ, and consider what this might mean for us today. On Sunday night, we again participated in fulfilling that mission of the shepherds who first encountered Jesus, spreading the word about this incredible child.

But does it stop with the carols? Is the carols the one occasion where the good news of Christmas can be proclaimed in a culturally-safe environment? Or could we continue, like the shepherds, to spread the word about Jesus during Christmas; at meals, in conversations, during road trips, or while washing Christmas lunch dishes? While sharing our faith is challenging, could there be someone we could share with this Christmas season about the gift that God has given us in Jesus Christ?        

Paul Pallot