To be honest, there are some things that Jesus said that still leave me scratching my head. It seems he sometimes went out of his way to provoke curiosity and personal exploration rather than giving easy (and therefore easily forgotten!) answers. However, there seem to be some things which he considered so critical that he spoke about them very plainly indeed. Take note of these topics! One of these is the way we communicate with God (aka ‘prayer’).
In Matthew 6, Jesus gives us a model prayer commonly known as ‘The Lord’s Prayer’, although his intention was really that it be ‘The Lord’s Followers’ Prayer’. The reason he did this, as recorded in Matthew 6:5-15, was that he saw a bunch of people doing prayer badly. Their prayers were an attempt to impress – both their neighbours (they were praying to look good rather than to become good) and their God (‘if I speak long enough maybe I’ll finally get some divine attention …’).
Jesus’ response? Acceptable prayer is grounded in relationship. So connect with God because you want to (‘go into your room, close the door’ is said to safeguard this motive). And secondly, know that God wants to connect with you. His phrase, ‘your Father knows what you need before you ask him’ speaks of God’s interest in our lives; there is no need to catch his eye - we already have it!
With that relationship-basis as the foundation of prayer, Jesus then goes on to talk about the Top Five things that he reckons are so important that they need to be regularly present in our conversations with God. Just dwell on that fact for a moment: of the multitude of things that Jesus could have suggested we talk about with God, he chose these five Prayer Conversation Starters as topics he wants us to come back to time and time again (the phrase ‘give us today our daily bread’ actually suggests a daily engagement with these things). They aren’t meant to be recited by rote. Each phrase is a impetus to partner with God in the things He is passionate about.
To avoid the numbness that sometimes comes with familiar wording, I hope you won’t mind if I repackage the Lord’s prayer model as ‘The Five G’s’. Can I encourage you today to dive into a conversation with God about these five things?
Glow Ask that the ‘light’ and glory of God would be greater because of the way you live your life today.
Grow Ask that the awareness and appreciation of God would grow in the lives of people in your personal world and in the wider world around you.
Give Ask God to provide for your needs today, and thank him in advance that he will.
4Give (Okay, so maybe I cheated a bit on the ‘G’ here!) Ask for and receive His forgiveness, and resolve to forgive those who hurt you and others you love.
Guard Ask that God would protect you from all the traps this day might throw at you (including destructive desires, Satan’s snares, worldly worries).
This Sunday: Confusing Grace, How Strange The Sound
There will be no Blaze or Spark's programmes running due to covid restrictions.
Join us for Ignite, our youth group for yr 7-8!
Time: 10 am (during the Sunday morning gathering)
Date: Every Sunday during school term
Join our yr 9-13 Youth Group!
Time: 7-8:30 PM
Date: Every Wednesday during school term
Worship This Sunday: Gathered AND Online
It was so exciting to be back together in our church building again! We will be doing it again this week at 10am (with masks and vaccine passports)!
There will also be an online service available to view, and a link will be sent out to you at 10am on Sunday morning.
Prayer Connection Points
Come along to a prayer gathering at the church lounge Thursdays from 11:30am-12:00pm. Masks and vaccine passports are required. Also, On Mondays from 12:00 – 12:30pm there will be an Online Prayer Gathering for half an hour via zoom. Contact the office if you would like the meeting link and passcode.
We have had a number of people express interest in joining the Book Club, but Thursday night wasn't the best night for people, and because of this, Sinia has been willing to move this to Monday nights. Come along to the first Monday night on 21 March at 7:30pm. Contact the church office if would like to join in.
Our outdoor sessions at 10am on Tuesdays at Little Rangitoto Reserve, (55-71 Upland Road, Remuera) are getting bigger and bigger! If you know anyone who has little kiddies, tell them to bring their picnic blankets, some morning tea, and get ready to boogie! If the weather looks soggy, a cancellation notice will be put in the RBC Facebook page and an online session made available
Thursday Morning Bible Study Group
Every Thursday morning at 10:30pm in the church lounge. We are currently running a four-week intensive on the book of Isaiah. 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! Please note that masks and vaccine passes are required.
Thursday Prayer Group
Every Thursday in the church lounge from 11:30am - 12:00 pm. Contact the office for more information. Please note that masks and vaccine passes are required.
Monday Zoom Prayer Group
From 12:00 – 12:30pm on Zoom. Contact the office if you would like the zoom link to be sent to you.
Thursday Night Book Club
Every Thursday from 7:30pm via Zoom. Contact the office if you would like the zoom link to be sent to you.
Young Adults Home Group
Every Sunday 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!
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.
Thursday Morning Home Group
Home Group in the church lounge on the third Thursday of the month at 10am. After morning tea we do a bible study and pray together. Contact the office for more information.