What are You Believing ?

This is my first post for 2016 and it comes from a message I preached at C3 Service Manly yesterday. I preached on something I am passionate about – what we believe.

This message came out of a season in my life last year when a thought popped into my head one day while I was walking the dog. The thought began as a seed and it quickly took root and before I knew it I had a new belief system in my mind – I had a new doctrine.


The sad thing about this doctrine was that it caused me to doubt God and despair that I wouldn’t see his goodness in an area of my life.

Good thing for me – this season didn’t last too long. Thanks to the Still Small Voice I came to my senses and dug out that faulty doctrine. However it reminded me how important it is to watch what we are believing.

Doctrine is not for Bible College students or academics – it is crucial for all of us. Paul speaking to Timothy says “Watch your life and doctrine closely”.

The reason it is crucial to watch your doctrine is because what you believe will determine how you live.

Here’s the key beliefs that will determine how we live and love.

1.  God is the Father

If I believe God is a Good Father it will change the way I live. People with Good Fathers are confident in who they are and happy to ask their Fathers for help

2. Jesus did it ALL on the Cross.

We have got to keep central in our minds that there is nothing we can do to earn God’s grace . This will keep works mentality from sneaking  into our thinking . We cannot earn God’s love- we have it 100% every day!

3. The Holy Spirit is NOT the Force (Sorry Star Wars fans)

He is the third person of the trinity, he is our guide, comforter and friend – he is God and He is the power that raised Jesus from the dead and lives on the inside of us. Incredible!

4. The Church is NOT a Meeting on a Sunday.

It is not a religious box we tick once a week. It is a dwelling place that God lives by his Spirit – it is the family of God- at points dysfunctional but still our family.

5. EVERY Person is valuable and made in the image of God!

That no matter the gender, age, status, ability – every person deserves respect and care. No person’s life is disposable for any cause. I hate to get political on a Monday morning but gosh I wish more people in our world understood this doctrine – life is sacred because it comes from God.

I know this is all pretty basic, but if I could forget God is Good for a season – I figured maybe you could too.

Believing for a great 2016 for you all – filled with great doctrine !

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What Do You Believe ?

A few months ago a thought took root in my mind. It started as a seed and was soon on its way to becoming a fully grown tree. It was a tree that was covered in thorns and was choking many other trees and my joy.The thought said that my value was linked to a negative in my life circumstances. It took me going on holiday and climbing a mountain to meet with God to get rid of that noxious weed.

It reminded me how important it is to know what we believe – the thought that had taken hold was based on a lie, and I should never have let it take root.

Here are a few areas where we need to know what exactly we believe. (I am sure you can think of so many more)

1. Who God is

I am reminded of the parable of the talents – if we believe, as one of the men did , that God is a hard task mater, it will influence everything about how we live life. It will cause us to bury our talents and live in fear. If we believe God is a goof Father, we will live in confidence and rest in the knowledge that we are loved.

2. The Value of Human Life

If we honestly believe every person is made in the image of God – it will mean that we will value every person we encounter. It means that prejudices and favouritism should not be part of our world. It means that the life of a homeless person is valuable, the life of a disabled person is valuable, the life of a person who has nothing at all to give us is valuable.

3. We can make a difference 

In this media soaked world it is easy to get compassion fatigue, feel overwhelmed and do nothing. Alternatively we can believe that every act of kindness brings a change, that every word can shift an atmosphere – that we can be the light of the world to our family, friends and neighbours.

It is so important to know what we really believe and to keep digging up the seeds of wrong beliefs that we all have . That’s why I love studying theology – it keeps me in a place of seeking to understand the faith I profess. Its why reading the Bible is key to life. We start to see the areas that our beliefs are going to paralyse us or cause us to treat people or ourselves badly. Then we can dig out those noxious trees and live the fulfilling life we were meant to!

(If you would like to get my blog in your email and never have to look for it on social media again – just subscribe on the side. I can’t guarantee it will always be brilliant, I can promise it will always be real – my aim is that it would always be helpful)