Posts Tagged With: Centre

God’s ways are higher

The grief we witness here on a regular basis is at times overwhelming, but on the other hand, having the people of Central Australia as a part of our lives, and the way we have been embraced, and the stories we have been told, which we otherwise would never have known have far outweighed the sorrow. Our opportunities to share of God’s love with their families are wonderful, but when people share with us their journey of faith and their wisdom we are bestowed treasures.

What I wouldn’t give to see these wonderful ladies and men healed so they could return to their families and their homes, and we pray and believe for that to happen. But God’s ways are not our ways, and His thoughts are not our thoughts.

I hear a lot about the latest catch cry ‘on earth as in heaven’ and what people think that means like bringing our idea of perfection here and all people are healed etc… well I think it is possibly deeper than that. Healings are great yes, prosperity is comfortable yes… but gold comes through the fire and is refined… and is lasting… perhaps on earth as it is in heaven is more about our will bending to His, our ambitions being set aside for His, and our ways, not taking precedence of His…Things will not be perfect this side of heaven and God is not interested in us taking glory for ourselves and becoming a big name, he is interested in matters of the heart… persecution came on the early church because they needed to spread the word… perhaps sometimes our earthly suffering is sometimes the same…God giving opportunity for us to expand our reach…I know I would maybe have never met these people if they were not here in town… and I see that even in the midst of sickness and suffering, that they are making an impact on the lives of others… on my life… by being here… I am by no means saying that God is a sadistic god who uses our suffering for his gain… I’m just thinking on how God utilises these things in our lives to bring about his purposes…all this to say… I am thankful for my richer life and the different perspectives I am seeing because of the life of the people I have met…

I do get glimpses of ‘on earth as it is in heaven’ but not usually how one would expect: it’s by looking in people’s eyes and hearing their heartbeat.alice-springs-pictures-3

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the heart and Body

Alice is literally in the centre of Australia, and some have gone so far to say it’s the heartbeat. So if it’s where the heartbeat of our nation is at, then we had better look after it, as I’m pretty sure the heart is a vital part of us sustaining life. Right? 😉

People come and go from this place, some unmoved by the atmosphere but loving the landscape and blue skies, others disillusioned by the hardness and dreams lost and buried here. Others are awakened here… they sense the heartbeat calling them in, drawing them in to new things and adventures untold and the deep wells of spiritual wealth in this place… and so they come. For a short while or long. Some fly in for a whirlwind tour to scout the land and feel their way and encounter new things. Others leave everything behind and come to sow their lives- some last that out, others leave from the sheer magnitude of life in the desert with its challenges and obstacles and tireless needs.

Over the last month, we have encountered many new faces and some old long-time friends who have all been drawn to this wonderful place our family have come to call home, and the exciting thing is, they have all sensed the same thing. God is doing a new thing. He is preparing the soil for a new and fresh outpouring of his Spirit and His body (His church) are getting hungry, and are awakening from their slumber and listening to the call for harvesters. Some are finding their feet and where they fit in with what God is doing here.

This week in particular we have had visits from some beautiful people who have encouraged our souls and prayed with and for us. This prayer and worship time was refreshing and just what I needed and didn’t know it. The body of Christ was doing its job. Edifying one another and spurring one another on. The coolest thing about it, was that these people were unknown to me. We were connected by our love for Christ and a love for people. The rest naturally followed. I am very aware that we often get caught up in the natural world we live in and forget about how the spiritual or supernatural is intricately intertwined in our lives… but as Watchman Nee said we are spiritual people having a natural experience, not the other way around. When we walk with God close, our lives don’t look the same as others. Our cravings are different from others, and we find ourselves in awesome experiences and being a part of naturally-supernatural moments.

The body of Christ is an amazing family, that reaches far past our nationality, language, culture and family ties. Jesus binds us together, that we can feel connected to a believer whose baby needs prayer in the Philippines, to an Indigenous man riding his horse over Australia to reach people for Jesus, and to a bunch of Koreans who come and sing and pray at your house just because they love the Lord and were obedient to His call. This body is made up of a bunch of once unruly, misfits, thieves, slanderers, murderers etc who have now laid down their former lives and said yes to the gift of life from Jesus Christ… a motley crew who, with warts and all, God chooses to outwork his grand plan of giving people opportunity to once again commune with him.

I love this body, and thank God I’m in Alice, where I get to see all these people come in, wanting to be a part of the heartbeat of Australia, be a part of its call and where I get to see daily, my God at work in ordinary people who are willing to lay down their lives for the sake of Jesus. I believe as we lay aside our own agendas and how we think things should pan out, we’ll see God weaving his tapestry and we’ll begin to flow in time with Him and see even greater things than we can imagine. This heartland of Australia will begin to beat in time with His heart and bring healing first here and then flow on and on.

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It’s been a while

Just reading a friend’s blog and am finally inspired to write again. If only so one day I might look back and remember where I was, and where I was hoping to go.

It has been 11 months since we moved here with our 3 little boys and embarked on the journey of our lives. This has been a settling, stretching year in our lives, but not one that has felt too hard to adjust to. It is like we were made to be here. It is like all the other things in our lives were equipping us for this moment (as I am sure we will feel about this time in our future endeavours).
It is true that He equips those He calls… The lives we have seen changed by the power of prayer has been beautiful. We are looking forward to God outpouring more in signs and wonders as the church of Alice Springs rises up.

This town is often put on the map for all the wrong reasons, but I believe that we will see the day when the media will be piling in to get the scoop on what God is doing in this town. What does it say? Where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more!!

Every time I see the Todd River flowing (which has only been twice this year, it is often a dry river bed) I get excited in my spirit. I see that God wants to flow in this town just like that river, but as a constant flow, not  a now-and-again happening but a well-spring of life, bringing joy, freedom and healing.

You know life here seems pretty normal to us with it’s going on, but Ben’s younger brother and wife arrived recently and they looked a little wide-eyed and culture shocked and I realised that what has become the norm for us (the interesting visits at the gate for one thing) is not everyday experiences in most peoples’ lives.

We have had an interesting couple of months, both Ben and I have been in hospital (Ben with appendicitis and me collapsing and getting my first ride in an ambulance). There has been some interesting people coming in trying to upset what God is doing here in Alice, but our God is faithful and His presence is very real in our lives. The exciting thing for me is that God is speaking to our children and they are feeling/ seeing Him at work in their lives, not just hearing it from us.

Ben has started working a couple of days on The Ghan (Train) as his study is coming to an end. The boys are still homeschooling and playing soccer. Zion had his first game, which was very exciting for him. We have had 3 venues for church this year, which has happened surprisingly smoothly, but are now in a school hall where we have a chance to continue to grow and see God outwork in our community.

Looking forward to seeing exciting things in the year to come, and can’t wait to share with you what is unfolding here.

Maggie, Janie, Nola and Narelle

Maggie, Janie, Nola and Narelle

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Some more pics of our Glen Helen stay

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Glen Helen

After a busy few months we were blessed by some wonderful people who sent us away for a night to Glen Helen Resort. It was lovely to be out of mobile range and just enjoy some family time. Our boys enjoyed the much needed time to explore and have their parents to themselves. We had a fantastic time, played monopoly, cards and explored and enjoyed the terrain. I thought I would share some photos of our trip. Probably one of the greatest things I am missing about the terrain is being within easy access to a beach, so I suppose this was the next best thing. Sitting on the sand, closing my eyes, in the warmth of the sun I could (almost)🙂 feel a gentle sea breeze… and the boys got to splash in the biggest body of water we had seen in a few months… We also explored Ormiston Gorge where we got to experience a dingo up closer than Josiah would like. The cave that the boys found went a lot deeper than we first thought. Josiah wanted to live there 🙂 it was nice and warm.

Look close and you can see the cave the boys climbed up to and in

Elijah and Josiah in the cave entrance

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Starting at the beginning…

Apparently to begin at the beginning is a very good place to start 🙂

We have been here 3 1/2 weeks now… and know that some of you are wanting to keep up with the goss of the Matsons in The Centre, so for you here it is 🙂

Amongst settling in and enjoying the pool that we have been so blessed by, we have also been enjoying the “endless blue skies” and wonderful summer weather. We have been exploring the terrain (only locally so far, but will go further afield)… we have been visited by both sets of parents, the Godfather (am I allowed to say that on here :-), and Donna and Elaine… this has been lovely and helped us settle in so much quicker thanwe would have on our own. We are so blessed with people who love us.

We’ve started school again now and the boys are really enjoying it… will be putting pictures up…

We go with the boys  to one of the hostels where a few people from our church are staying as they are too sick to return home to their communities where they come from. There are many indigenous people on renal dialysis, it really seems to be an epidemic- please pray for them… they miss their families so much. They love when we come to visit and have been showing us their weaving and love showing the boys the guinea pigs and also love to laugh at us when we try to speak their language. I love to see them smile. It makes my day. And they love to pray! Next week, we are taking the guitar in so we can worship with them. I will try my hand at a couple of Pitjintjara songs and hopefully not say anything offensive accidentally ;-).

Ben also gets calls to come into the hospital to visit with some people. At the moment there is a fella in there who is in ICU, please pray for him as we are not sure how long he has. We want to see the power of God at work in and through us. Amen!?

We also visit with some of the ladies from another hostel. And I like walking through the streets just seeing if there is anyone to talk to.

Of a night we have had a couple of visits from women needing help. One lady was about 3am and she was wailing and banging on the front gates, so we went out to pray with her. We went out to pray with her and gave her a drink of water, but she began convulsing and hitting her head on the cement, so we had to call an ambulance…

We’ve been broken into whilst at church (not a biggie… everything ok) but the police said well we can call ourselves locals now (yeah right, that takes about 26 years- we’ve lived in small towns before remember 😉

You know if you got caught up in the needs, you would get overwhelmed oh so quickly…so many hurting people, Indigenous and non. But (preaching to myself) we keep our eyes fixed on Jesus the author and perfector of our faith… He will draw them, and only He can transform them…

You know, we’ve lifted up our eyes, and the harvest is ripe…. don’t say it’s 4 months til harvest… it’s ready!

It’s great that we give our time and finance to mission work overseas, but lets not neglect our harvest field and mountain of need right here in our own country that is requiring some “laid down lovers’ to attend to it….

Well love to you all… missing my lovely friends and family very much… but I am glad for God bringing to fruition dreams buried deep and just trying to be patient to see them birth fully…

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