In John 3:16, Jesus teaches us that the God who exists loves. Let that sink in. The God who absolutely is. Loves. He loves. Of all the things you might say about God, be sure to say this: he loves. The same writer of John 3:16 says in 1 John 4:8, “God is love.” Which I take to mean at least this: giving what’s good and serving the benefit of others is closer to the essence of God than getting and being served. God is without needs. God inclines to meet needs. God is a giver. God is love. So Jesus tells us more specifically what he means by love in John 3:16. “God so loved . . .” The “so” here doesn’t mean an amount of love, but a way of loving. He doesn’t mean, God loved so much, but God loved this way. “God so loved” means “God thus loved.” How? What is the way God loved? He loved such “that he gave his only Son.” And we know that this giving was a giving up to rejection and death. “He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him” (John 1:11). Instead they killed him. And Jesus said of all this, “I glorified you [Father] on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do” (John 17:4). So when the Father gave his only begotten Son, he gave him to die. That’s the kind of love the Father has. It is a giving love. It gives his most precious treasure—his Son. Meditate on that this Advent. It was a very costly love. A very powerful love. A very rugged, painful love. The meaning of Christmas is the celebration of this love. “God so loved . . .” And wonder of wonders, God gives this costly love to an undeserving world of sinners, like us. (Taken from John Piper, The Dawning of Indestructible Joy: Daily Readings for Advent).
This Sunday 15 December…
Celebration Service! This morning, we take a service to look back on the year that has been and give thanks to God for his many blessings.
Ignite Youth Group
Seeing as it will be the last event of the year, on Friday 13 December from 6:30pm we thought it would be a good idea to make use of the good weather and have a BBQ at the beach. Meet at the Mission Bay fountain and bring a plate of food to share. So bring the whānau and lets have a good last meal together.
This Sunday 15 December after the service. Come along as we discuss the life of our church moving forward.
Kids Programs This Sunday
Spark is our program for older preschool to year 2 kids, led by Margaret Stewart.
Blaze is for kids in years 3-5, led by Olwyn Dickson.
Ignite for young people in years 6 and above will be staying in for the service.
mainly music for young children has now finished for 2019 and will begin again in February 2020.
Out of Office
Please note that Murray will be away from 29 December - 3 January and then 6 - 25 January.
The office will be closed from Wednesday 25 December. It will re-open on Tuesday 7 January with normal hours.
Carols In The CarPark
Come along this Sunday 15 December from 6:30 - 7:30pm for a family-friendly time of carol-singing and creative re-telling of the Christmas story with fun content for kids and a free sausage sizzle. Bring your friends; bring a cushion, blanket or camp-chair to sit on. If it's wet, we will be inside the church.
Christmas Day Service
Wednesday 25 December from 9:30-10:30am.
Free Library Books
A number of books have been culled from the church library and people are welcome to help themselves to any they may want. Please help yourselves from the boxes in the lounge before Christmas week.
Wednesday Night Home Group
Home Group at the home of Paul and Ruth Ungemuth every second and fourth Wednesday at 7:30pm. Each week we share in supper, do a bible study and pray for each other. Will begin on Wednesday 13 February. Contact the office for more information.
Wednesday Morning Home Group
Home Group at the home of Joy Galt on the third Wednesday of the month at 10am. After morning tea we do a bible study and pray together. Contact the office for more information.
Young Adults Home Group
Every Wednesday evening at 7:30pm. Please email the church to be added to the Facebook page, and check Facebook for updates of what we have going on. We'd love for you to join us!
Check out what is happening at RBC this Christmas season!