April Newsletter - Genr8 Ministries
Easter Message from the CEO
The approach to Easter gives us some great opportunities to explain the heart of the gospel. “God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself.” Nothing is more important than inviting others to get on board with what has been done for us.
I know schools ministry workers sow seed faithfully in either SRE lessons or generally in response to questions from students, teachers and parents as appropriate. The word of God is powerful and active. Thanks to our 90 SRE teachers and chaplains for showing God’s love in all their hard work through first term.
It’s a sovereign work of God to bring people to himself. We don’t need to manipulate anyone into his kingdom. We are called to be faithful, consistent, available and ready to use the opportunities he gives. Let us ask God to help us be more and more like this.
I’ve just been reading in Acts about Paul’s defence when falsely charged for creating a riot in Jerusalem. Not only is he nearly lynched, but he is also illegally beaten by the Roman authorities before he can tell them he is a Roman citizen born in Tarsus. He then finds himself in front the Roman commander facing his accusers. He might be excused for looking for a quiet compromise to get out of there.
But when he came to Jerusalem this time he knew he was going to encounter dangerous opposition. He knew he was following in the footsteps of Jesus his crucified Lord who had turned his life upside down on the road to Damascus. And he knew the outcome of Jesus’ illegal trial, suffering and death.
So what does he do? The spiritual equivalent of throwing a hand-grenade in a crowded room! “I stand on trial because of my hope in the resurrection of the dead!” he cries. This divided his opposition and caused an uproar. The commander had to break up the hearing and get Paul out of there.
This was more than a clever way to highlight the animosity between the Pharisees and Sadducees and get the attention off himself. In the unjust, drawn out legal process and imprisonment over the next few years Paul insists that he is on trial because of his hope in the resurrection of the dead, the direct outcome of Jesus’ ministry and obedient death. He trusts the Spirit to give him the words, and he gets free passage to Rome to be tried before the emperor.
Throughout his imprisonment he will continue to write letters that have changed lives and changed the world. He didn’t step back. He trusted and committed himself to his faithful Creator.
I’m re-inspired by what Jesus did in Paul, and by what he can do in us and all who trust in him. I hope you too are inspired afresh this Good Friday and Easter.
Some thoughts for holiday refreshment
Get a complete break from school! Don’t hang on to work things during your holidays. (Any preparation you need to do over the next two weeks do immediately and not more than a day, or shortly before returning to work. Work related conferences are OK as long as you get a good break the rest of the time.)
Go away for at least a few days if at all possible – the sooner the better. Take some board games.
Do physical exercise – bushwalking or beachcombing, swimming, games – you know what works for you.
See friends and just sit around and enjoy being with them and being where you are
Take more time to read – including reading to family - and don’t waste your refreshment on too much TV or computer stuff; how long since you read the Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Wind in the Willows or Alice in Wonderland? Feed your imagination. See a good film, but not lots of videos. Read a narrative slab of scripture – e.g. Genesis, Joshua, 1 & 2 Samuel, a Gospel.
Go to bed earlier as the holiday progresses – it may take a while to break the late night habits of term time.
Visit a different church when away from home.
Remember that doing different activities gets you out of routine (helpful) but being out of routine increases the chances of accidents and injuries – so be wise about your capabilities and pace yourself. Be careful in unusual circumstances.
Thank God for time out to enjoy his creation!
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