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Song From Sunday

This past Sunday the band introduced to us the song “Yet Not I, But Through Christ In Me” by CityAlight (St.Pauls Castle Hill). What a great song... It’s totally stuck in my head, and ain’t complaining about it :-)

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Missions Week!

This week is Missions Week at Sovereign Grace and with Easter just 10 days away it really is the perfect opportunity to start a conversation about Jesus. We’ll be praying for you as a pastoral team as you step out in faith to share Jesus with your friends and family!

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Easter Is Almost Here!

Easter is a wonderful opportunity to share Jesus with friends and family who don’t know him. All it takes to start a conversation about Jesus is to ask someone, ‘How do you normally celebrate Easter?’ We have two services this year: 5pm Good Friday & 10:30am Resurrection Sunday. Why not invite someone to come and join us?!

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Join Our Photography Team!

Do you enjoy photography? Would you like to learn how to take amazing photos? We’re forming a photography team at church to help us take beautiful photos of our community life! Rob Viuya is offering to train anyone with an interest in photography who would like to serve our church. For more information contact: bw@sovgrace.org.au

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Sunday Recap: When God Sees More Than Us.

This Sunday we continued on with our Exodus series as Pastor Dave Taylor preached from Exodus 13:17–14:31 on Israel’s actual exodus from Egypt. Dave helped us to see that though Israel could see many aspects of God’s work in their deliverance from Egypt including the plagues, the fire and cloud and God’s faithfulness to his promises in the bones of Joseph, they were not expecting the path he chose to take them on!

Dave helped us to see from Scripture that whatever the particular pathways of our lives may be; God is always with us, always involved, & always faithful, in each & every step. You can listen online here.

We were also blessed to have our Pastoral resident Glen Jones lead us in worship for the first time in what was a wonderful morning! We’re praying that Glen, Donita and the kids would continue to settle into life here with us on the other side of the world!

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Sunday Recap: Pastor Patrick!

On Sunday we had the incredible privilege and joy of ordaining Patrick Chavez as a Pastor. Patrick is a man of incredible character, holiness and humility, who has proven himself as a very able servant of Christ and steward of the mysteries of God (1 Cor. 4:1). He, his wife and his family, have served our Church in innumerable ways and we are so grateful for them. Please continue to pray for Patrick and his family, that God would use him all the more, and that God would protect them from the evil one! Please also pray that God would send us more ‘Patrick’s’ so that we can have more shepherds to keep watch over our souls!

Dave preached from Hebrews 13:17 and spoke of how in the great race of following Jesus, God has given us pastors to help us make it to the end! Pastors are called to: lead, nourish, equip, protect and serve the Church. As members we are called to follow our Pastors with faith and openness. The message will be on podcast later this week, check it out!

“Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith… Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.” Hebrews 13:7, 17

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What's Your Easter Plan?

This Friday marks just three weeks until Good Friday! It’s a date that so easily comes and goes on our calendar and yet it really is one of our key opportunities to share Jesus with others in Sydney. Different from the USA, Aussies are most likely to search for ‘Jesus’ on Google in March in the lead up to Easter. Yet without a clear plan we can so easily let Easter come and go without making the most of the opportunity!

What could you do to start preparing now for Easter 2019? Could you host a GC dinner and invite your neighbours to join? Could you invite your colleagues at work to our Good Friday service? Could you get involved with our Eggs on the Oval celebration in Waitara? Here’s a great article from Saturate with some more ideas you could explore.

Easter is a wonderful opportunity and we’ll be praying for courage to boldly share Jesus.

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Pray For Parra...In Parra! April 9th

Once a month I invite anyone in the Church who wants to join with the Launch Team to pray for our upcoming Church plant. On April 9th we will actually be praying in Parramatta! CJ, Maddie and Nicky have moved into Parramatta and they have opened up their home to host our next prayer night. If you would like to come, please just email me at rs@sovgrace.org.au to let me know so that I can send out their address. Like Spurgeon said, “No man can do me a truer kindness in this world than to pray for me.”

Baptisms Coming Up: 21st April

Christ commanded that all His followers are to be baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matt. 28:19) as a sign of the inward reality that has taken place in their life. They have died to sin with Christ (going under the water) and have arisen to new life in Christ (coming up out of the water), they are now a child of God and are linked with Him! It is a God-ordained means of grace and a wonderful opportunity to publicly testify that you are a follower of Jesus. If you haven’t yet been baptized, or were baptized as an infant, would you consider being baptized this Easter Sunday? If you would like to do this, please email Brendan at bw@sovgrace.org.au, so that we can organize our short baptism class in order to best prepare you for what baptism is.

Our CAP Debt Centre Is At Capacity!

Almost four months into the year and our Hornsby CAP Debt Centre is running at full capacity! We are currently supporting 2 new clients every month which is very encouraging! People form all walks of life come to us and seek support with their unmanageable debts. There are often many tears and we regularly listen to heartbreaking stories of grief and loss, sickness, addictions, relationship breakdowns and all sorts of hardships. How good is it that we can offer prayer and share the glorious news of the gospel with our clients! Pointing our clients to the One who has cancelled all their debts is such a privilege and it is actually the only real hope for the people who walk through our doors. Combining this real hope with practical support is what our calling as a local church and our debt centre is all about. Offering clients support with managing their debts has been life changing for the clients we meet. Sometimes it is literally lifesaving! 

Unfortunately, a number of CAP clients have contemplated and some even attempted suicide. This is to show how devastating debts can be and how it can affect a person’s life. This reminds me of one client in particular who I met and who felt like it was not worth living anymore. Debts accumulated, issues with additions became unmanageable, no friends were around, and bills kept coming in. This client worked 7 days a week to meet the expenses and the debt re-payments. But the money just disappeared. There was no hope – no solution and no-one to turn to. Praise God for his kindness to bring this person to our Debt Centre. I prayed with this client, reminded them of God’s love for them even through they were in this dreadful situation. CAP Head Office was able to help this client with a solution that would manage the debts. This client had actually given up – wanted to die several times. They are now surrounded with supports – from CAP, myself and CAP volunteers who follow them up and befriend them.  What a blessing that we can be part of such a great ministry and being the hands and feet of Jesus in our community!

Please keep praying for CAP; our centre is currently booked out and we are seeing lots of new clients which is very encouraging. Please pray that these individuals will meet their saviour and also find the practical support their need. And please pray for us as we are supporting these clients either in meetings or by following them up in the community.   

If you are interested in serving as a CAP volunteer, please contact me: christina.williams@capaust.org.au.

Eggs On The Oval 2019... Volunteers Needed!

Last year we ran Eggs on the Oval to try and reach out to families living in Waitara on Good Friday and we had an amazing response! Around 350 kids turned up and we were absolutely swamped as we handed out balloons, chocolate eggs, lollies, painted faces and invited people to join our Good Friday service! This year we’re getting behind the event as a whole church and we’d love your help! If you’re not a Waitara local we’d especially love your help with face painting, the BBQ, the Egg Hunt, games etc. to free up the Waitara locals to chat and invite people along to our Easter services. To get involved contact Brendan: bw@sovgrace.org.au

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1 Minute Of Your Time Could Change Someone's Life!

If you were new to our neighbourhood, how would you go about finding a local church? If you were living in our community and found yourself becoming curious about Jesus how would you find a church that you could join? The answer for most people, most of the time is…. Google. As a church, we’ve just created a Google page for our Sunday Gatherings and we’d love to see hundreds of 5-star reviews from people who know and love our church community! It will take you all of 1 minute to leave a review but that could be the difference between someone coming to visit us OR never even knowing we exist. Why not jump online now and let people know why they should come and join us on Sunday? Click here to leave a review.

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Ordination This Sunday - 24th March

This week mark’s a very special week in our calendars, as this Sunday we’ll be ordaining our very own Mr Patrick Chavez. This marks the end of a long journey of training and assessment, and the beginning of a long journey of ordained pastoral ministry… May this be a wonderful celebration for us all!

ICM Charity Dinner

Last Saturday, a group of 14 from Church got dressed up and headed to a venue right by the Sydney harbour bridge for a night of fun and fellowship at the International Care Ministries (ICM) charity dinner. ICM is a faith based charity that works amongst the ultra-poor in Philippines, and the church gives towards this ministry annually as part of its go forward fund. And what a night it was!

A night of food and drinks with some fabulous friends from church were the immediate attractions, but the night had far more to offer. Intermittent between meals were passionate and informative presentations on what ICM is doing to help the ultra poor in Philippines, and the fruits that ICM is bearing through its Transform program. The ultra poor are those living on less than US50c per day. What does that mean practically? 22% of them goes to bed hungry at least once a week, 10% are seriously ill at any one time, 32% have had siblings die, 40% live with no electricity, and 26% defecate outside. There was also a guest speaker for the night, our very own Patrick Chavez representing Sovereign Grace Sydney, who gave a beautiful account of the team from church that went to Philippines at the beginning of 2018.  

A highlight of the night was the opportunity to then turn knowledge into action through practical and fun ways through silent auctions- from wines, and paintings, to holiday vouchers- knowing that every dollar spent goes towards helping the ultra poor in Philippines. Our eyes nearly popped out when we noticed soft toy puppies selling for $200- but on hearing that each puppy was going to provide 4800 meals to bring people out of malnutrition- quite a few were snapped out in an instant.

Hope this gives you a little insight into 2019 ICM charity dinner, and hope to see you there next year in 2020!

In the words of Jesus in Luke 12:33-34: “Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with money-bags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moths destroys. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”

Book Recommendations - A Most Important Remembrance

Just this past Sunday I had the privilege of preaching a message entitled, ‘A Most Important Remembrance’, from Exodus 12.40-13.16. If you missed it or you’d like to relisten to it, please click here: http://www.sovgrace.org.au/media/exodus-drawn-out-draw/most-important-remembrance

As mentioned in the message, their are many ways for us to ‘remember’, one of them being to regularly read or re-read a book on the cross, and so to that end here’s some book recommendations for you that have been such a blessing to me over the years. Enjoy!!!

  1. Living The Cross Centered Life, by C.J.Mahaney

  2. The Cries Of The Cross, by Erwin Lutzer

  3. The Cross of Christ, by John Stott

  4. Transforming Grace, by Jerry Bridges