top of page

Healthy, Growing and Full of Love

Catch up with the latest church news and pastoral reflections in our weekly blog

“And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit”

2 Cor 3:18

Here’s a question for you: when we gather to worship God in song, are we there for Him, or is He there for us?

I think the answer is ‘Yes'…

Worshipping God in song blesses His heart, and it does our soul good. Not that God needs our worship, we do…He’s not some insecure cosmic being, who waits for His worshippers to remind Him how awesome He is and how desperately they need Him before He decides to intervene.

God never changes…but when we worship, we change.

Worship takes our eyes off the busyness of life and turns our attention and focus to the author of life. “With unveiled faces", we stand before God, in the place where we contemplate the Lord’s glory” with our attention fully on him, God transforms us "into His image”

The Greek word there for ’transformed’ is metamorphoumetha which has a definition of "changing form in keeping with inner reality”…I love that description.

You could probably guess what this Greek word is the root word of - metamorphosis - the process by which a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly…and I love that picture too.

As we turn our unabated faces and attention towards Jesus, God transforms us to be more like him.

In a world that vies for our attention every moment we’re awake, let’s gather on Sunday night to worship and centre our attention on Christ…it’s what we need, if we long for change.


“...In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

Acts 20:35

"Why are we doing a working bee anyway?!"

Maybe you’ve been wondering the same thing!

Years ago I read a book about anthropology and social behaviours called 'The Search to Belong’. The author talked about 4 spaces of human belonging (i.e. Public, Social, Personal, Intimate), and something about this resonated with me. Considering these spaces of belonging can impact how we as Church for the City engage our city. For example, if we only offer interaction in the personal and intimate spaces in the form of Worship, Bible Study, and Prayer, etc newcomers will often find it too high of a barrier of entry to overcome.

The little graphic above is an attempt to adapt these Spaces of Belonging that we as a church can exist, within our city.

Notice that 2 of these spaces involve people coming to us (i.e. Fellowship and Hospitality)…often in the form of Sunday Services and Smaller and more Social Settings. That’s not necessarily bad, we just need to recognise that some will still find these spaces intimidating. The other 2 spaces (i.e. Service and Participation) require us to go, to be active, and to be seen. In order to be active in the mission of God, we need a balance of both Inward and Outward activities.

This coming weekend we have the opportunity to go…to both Serve alongside and Participate in the work of Women & Children First to help rescue and house women and children fleeing unsafe homes. Whilst we wish they didn’t need to exist, we want to partner with and serve them in their mission as long as they do…it’s part of what it means to be a Church for the City.


Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted .. I take refuge in you. May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope, Lord, is in you.

Psalm 25:16, 21

"It’s lonely living alone"

Heather caught up with a friend from school the other day…they walked, sipped coffee, and shared about all aspects of life, before this simple statement was uttered - "It’s lonely living alone..."

There are few issues that have such a devastating effect as loneliness (and by the way, if this post impacts you, please hit reply and reach out).

By and large, psychologists and counsellors agree that loneliness is Australia’s next epidemic. A 2018 survey of 1,678 people found that one in four (25%) Australians report feeling lonely three or more days every week, one in three (33%) Australians never or rarely feel like they belong to a group of friends, and half (50%) of all Australians feel lonely at least one day a week.

Very sobering (and alarming) statistics. These survey results also tells us that loneliness increases the likelihood of experiencing depression by 15% and anxiety by 13%. Loneliness also increases blood pressure, heightening the risk of stroke and heart disease.

UK journalist George Monbiot writes: “Isolation is as potent a cause of early death as smoking 15 cigarettes a day; it’s twice as deadly as obesity. Dementia, high blood pressure, alcoholism and accidents—all these, like depression, paranoia, anxiety and suicide, become more prevalent when connections are cut. Evidently, we cannot cope alone.”

It’s affecting young and old, rich and poor, educated and uneducated. Even King David was well acquainted with it, and his honest cries to God are recorded in the Psalms (see above). You don’t always know it’s happening, because much of it takes place behind closed doors…but increasing numbers of people are touched by it.

Would you count yourself among this number? Please reach out to us, we’d love to connect...

Are you surprised by how many feel disconnected and alone? Please reach out to someone, they’d love to connect...

But what of the church? Is there an institution that can break the cycle of loneliness? Goodness, I hope so…

Our desperate hope as a Christian community is that we would be a people where you can love and be loved, serve and be served, care for and be cared for.

One of the bible’s favourite descriptions of the church is that of family…brothers and sisters in Christ, fathers and mothers in the faith; a community of love from every walk of life (Rom 8:12-17, Eph 2:19-22, 1 Peter 2:9-10). We have all been adopted into the intimate, inclusive, interdependent family of God. We are a family that embraces people from every walk of life…a family that affirms the generations, celebrates our family resemblance & embraces individual distinctiveness.

I so desperately want the church to be part of the antidote to loneliness...

And perhaps there’s much that the church (and other aspects of society) can do to alleviate loneliness. But we need to point to the One who’s the ultimate solution to loneliness: ‘Emmanuel’—God with us. No matter how lonely or isolated we might feel, God Himself is with His people, bringing comfort and hope to our darkest nights: God’s Word says to us, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you” (Neb 13:5). God took on flesh and made His dwelling among us (John 1:14) in the person of Jesus, and then Jesus promised that it was better that he left because he was sending the Spirit/Advocate (John 16:7) who is with us now.

Despite our loneliness telling us otherwise, as His beloved children, we are never alone.

bottom of page