Posts Tagged With: harvest

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? ūüėČ

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.

Categories: My journey | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

how beautiful…are the feet that bring good news

Sunday morning

Sunday morning

Kids Club

Kids Club

Youth group

Youth group

From time to time we have teams that visit Alice Springs and bunk down at our home for a week. Last week 18 young people descended on us- affectionately known as ‘Seaton Mob’. Lots of new faces, including Tom, who has seen the miracles of God flowing in his life, in particular over the last year where he has been recovering from being hit by a truck, whilst riding his bicycle. He really is a walking, talking, laughing (and what a laugh that is:-) ) miracle.
The team was headed up by Sam, a fella who quietly and confidently led the team, even though at times he had no idea what he was getting himself into…
This year saw many changes. In the past outreach teams main focus has been to run kids programs. This time around we wanted to see if there was a way of reaching whole families, and encourage the people in our congregation, as well as do some street outreach- singing and prayer.
The team sung in a few of the hostels that we have relationships with through church and the response at those places was fantastic from both the residents and the staff. The people were so happy to have the team sing for them and were encouraged by their prayers for them. One person even shared how last year he was prayed for and was healed.
There were healings happening when the team were praying this year as well!
What brought me great joy was when the team took our youth out to Telegraph Station and played some games and had a BBQ tea. There were a couple of our guys who chose to start following Jesus that night- priceless.
The kids club was good too. Due to some technical difficulties, the team had to show their flexibility and run the program outside. And to their credit, they held the 40+ children’s attention for an hour. Well done team!
Ben and I love to see young people come and give of their time and grow in confidence with growing and sharing their faith. When I was a young teen, not that long ago really ;-), a Pastor was willing to give me a go sharing my faith and just giving things a go, and he put me in good stead for where I am at today. He birthed a passion in me that couldn’t even be put out when I detoured off the path for a while, and it was that seed planted in me then, that ultimately brought me back on the narrow road as Jesus so calls it. It is our hope that these times in Alice can be the same for these young adventurers. That they are spurred on to go deeper in God, not be satisfied with the status quo, that they will stand out and stand up for righteousness and injustice and be passionate about sharing the good news of Jesus Christ, not just with their lips but with their lives as well.

The first day some of the team were quite timid when they went out on the streets, but by the end some of the girls were so excited that they might have another opportunity to pray with someone. Just beautiful. They even learnt a chorus in Pitjantjatjara, which according to someone in the know, was “deadly”- that means good :-).

Our church were blessed by the time they spent here. (Must mention Jill Daly and Bethany’s food was exceptional once again- wasn’t it Joel?)

Things didn’t always go to plan (but when¬†do¬†they in Alice?) and we faced some opposition, but I do believe it was a fruitful time. I know our family were blessed and laughed a lot and danced a little, bring on the Bollywood.
Look forward to the next team (after hopefully some sleep ;-)) and seeing what God has in store for us and them.
The verse that springs to mind as I think on this team and the others that come our way… “How¬†beautiful on¬†the¬†mountains¬†are¬†the¬†feet¬†of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation…” Isaiah 52:7.

Todd Mall

Todd Mall

Categories: fun in the sun, stories | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Starting at the beginning…

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

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 ūüôā

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 ūüėČ

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…

Categories: My journey | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

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