Scott Sanders launches our Advent series by getting lost in the bush and finding the humble path - at expense of his pride.
“Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls." Matthew 11
For Rachael Friebel there is always hope, even in the midst of fear and despair.
Charlene Delos Santos gets a reality check about racism in Australia, but sees the possibility for kingdom-centred change in all of us - just maybe not the way we expect.
In Zechariah’s silence, Michelle Farrall finds the strength to confront her own fears. Albeit reluctantly.
Dr Meredith Lake looks back at our history, the good and the bad, and asks how fear drives our engagement in the world today.
“Fear causes people to hold tightly to what we have”. On day 6 of Advent, Grace Lung reflects on letting go of fear and embracing trust.
For Mary-Anne Maio’s family, this year was marked by unprecedented fear. Yet, through it all she found strength in Christ and her community.
Songs full of ache, promise and encouragement. Rev Christine Redwood reflects on these different songs in her search for justice and healing.
Father Shenouda Mansour teaches us to pray impossible prayers, knowing that no prayer goes unheard – though it may be answered unexpectedly.
As storms brew on global horizons, Sherwin Titus finds in Jesus the peacemaker we so desperately seek.
Fear that motivates and fear that paralyses. Stephen O’Doherty breaks down how perfect love is the antidote to these conditions.
Disruption, drought and dodgy knees. Elizabeth Stone reminds us of the long tradition of changemakers we belong to.
Brad Chilcott finds in Isaiah’s song a call to challenge the cultural, global and internal enemies that divide us, as we join in God’s holistic salvation for this world.
Ross Piper, CEO of Christian Super, reclaims the joy and truth of abundant generosity.
Liz Milani validates Mary’s fear, and learns from her example how we might navigate our own fear and uncertainty, without yielding to it.
When confronted with the reality of our climate crisis, Jason John urges us that our response needs to be faith in action, not helpless fear.
Pastor Ray Minniecon explores the disruption of Joseph as he learns of Mary’s pregnancy with Jesus, and considers his options.
Brooke Prentis reflects on the highs and lows of the year that’s been, and calls us deeper into friendship marked by courage, not fear.
Rev Charissa Suli loves a good Christmas tune, but invites us to sing anew the deeper songs of hope in a broken world.
Hwvar Khoshnow acknowledges the heavy weight of fear, and lightness of hope in the promise of its passing.
Conspiracy, prophecy, promise, danger, hope and joy. David Barrow reflects on Mary's revolutionary song.
Josh Dowton celebrates how being significantly insignificant can (and did) change everything.
This Advent, Jessica Smith invites us to dance.
Stevie Wills was strangled by the umbilical cord at birth. She shares her journey of connecting with her living and letting go of the fear of death.
On Christmas Day and the final post in our Advent series, Natalie Williams searches for a new spirituality of waiting.
Fear not is a familiar phrase in the Christmas stories of the bible. As people found themselves part of the coming of Christ, time and again they were exhorted to not be afraid.
As followers of Jesus, we too are invited to move beyond fear.
We are invited to embrace as family those whom we may initially fear. Listen to people who are different to us and learn from them. Acknowledge our own fear of taking action to become peacemakers in the world and embrace the freedom given to us through Jesus.
To move beyond fear is to accept an invitation into love and freedom. God’s love is radical and gracious. It is a love that banishes fear of judgement (1 John 4). We live in a world in which fear is at the heart of division and exclusion. As we reflect on Jesus’ call to move beyond fear, we are reminded not only of the love we encounter personally but also love as a driving force for good in the world.
Throughout December 2018 we heard daily reflections from these incredible contributors:
- Charlene Delos Santos Co-director, SURRENDER
- Scott Sanders CEO, Common Grace
- Rev. Christine Redwood Lead Pastor, Seaforth Baptist
- Elizabeth Stone Associate General Secretary, National Council of Churches
- Uncle Ray Minniecon Aboriginal Pastor
- Grace Lung Research Fellow, Centre for Asian Christianity
- Meredith Lake Writer & Historian
- Jessica Smith Community Pastor, Paddington Anglican
- Ross Piper CEO, Christian Super
- Rachel Friebel Manager, Family Relationship Services
- Stephen O'Doherty Radio Presenter, Hope 103.2
- Stevie Wills Community Education Officer, CBM Australia
- Fr Shenouda Mansour Coptic Orthodox Priest
- Michelle Farrall Director, The Future Leader Group
- David Barrow Lead Organiser, Sydney Alliance
- Mary-Anne Maio Comms Officer, Catholic Youth Adelaide
- Liz Milani Pocketfuel
- Brooke Prentis Aboriginal Christian Leader
- Hwvar Khoshnow
- Rev. Charissa Suli Uniting Church Assembly
- Sherwin Titus Student
- Natalie Williams Board Chair, Common Grace
- Brad Chilcott Founder, Welcome to Australia
- Jason John Uniting Earth
- Josh Dowton Associate Pastor, Northside Baptist Church
This series has been produced by Common Grace,
with support from Christian Super.