Author Archives: Admin

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Blurb – 5 November 2017

Category : Links

I was reminded the other day of one of the
scripture verses that I have pondered on for
What happened was that Cheryll and I have been
waiting for some time for the rain to stop so that
we could burn some bonfires we had stacked up. I
had dropped a heap of trees a while back and this
was what was left – so pyromaniac time! All was
going well – we were working like Trojans.
Granddaughter arrived so the ‘boss’ went inside
and I kept stocking fires. I picked up a large log and
ceremoniously dumped it on top of the burning
heap, satisfying! However, as it hit, debris went
flying and one large ember, glowing like Halley’s
comet, decided to land inside my gumboot. The
burn! It stuck on the top of my foot and embed
itself in my melting nylon sock. With quick
reaction, I started ripping my boot off and got
cramp in the back of my leg! I straightened my leg
out with the ember burning happily away.
Eventually the leg cramp eased and I managed to
get my boot off (brand new Redbands) and had to
pick the still glowing ember out of my sock and
foot, burning my fingers in the process. It was a
great day. There is now a burn hole in the top of
my foot.
What’s the verse? Matt 3:11, He will baptize you
with the Holy Spirit and fire.
What does the baptism of Fire look like for you?
And how does this relate to Hebrews 12:29?

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Blurb – 12 November 2017

Category : Links

We realised that time was flying by when we flipped
over the calendar to November. There are only about 6
weekends until Christmas. We looked on the family “Board” and saw that every weekend was busy with
events, with the family only going to half of
them. Adam has finished school and is swotting for
exams. Howard has planted the summer vegetables. I’ve wrapped the Christmas presents.
It just seems as though we have hardly taken a breath
since 2017 New Year– and here we are planning
What is this all for? Do we really need to cram
everything in before Christmas? Is the flip of the
calendar from 2017-2018 so monumental that the
world is going to end if there are a few days of
statutory holidays? Can it not wait? Do we need all
this stress– most of which is self imposed?
We are pondering on this– particularly after a recent
student Bible study session. We had some quiet
meditation time when the words“Be Still” reverberated
around our lounge. We realised that the scripture says “Be Still and Know that I am God” – but we wonder tooif God is saying to us that we need to rely more on Him
and He will give us rest (Matthew 11:28
-30). That maybe so, but do we need to spin out of control before we
remember to put that in practice?
Maybe this will be our mantra for the next couple of
months. To slow down. Remember God is in
control. We can only do the next right thing and have
faith that it aligns with God’s will.

Does this apply to
you too?

The Ettemas.

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Blurb – 19 November 2017

Category : Links

I’ve been asked to share something
I’ve had a few ups and downs over the past year, and
with that I have appreciated the support and prayers of
people in our church. I enjoy coming to church. The
interaction between fellow Christians is a big
encouragement for me. This place where we worship
God reminds me of who He is and what He has
done for us.
How we live in the world is a challenge. God has put
each of us in a place of responsibility. We are to shine
for Him and be deliberate in sharing our faith.
I work as a lawyer with the constant tension of
operating in a high pressure business environment
where people rely on us to find solutions to their
problems, meet deadlines, and get good results for
In the midst of this I see the hand of God guiding and
providing. He gives His wisdom to know how to
respond and what to do. He is always (at least) three
steps ahead of the game – which is reassuring,
especially when the pressure is on!
During the year I have been studying John’s gospel and
what I have found in that is that Jesus Christ died for
my sins, was resurrected and lives in me, to share His
good news with others. I’m still ‘rough round the edges’
but He is constantly there reminding me of His
presence in my life, His hand upon me and His great
-Graeme Steed


Kidz Church Update
When I normally prepare for Children’s Church my
first thought is to have some exciting game or activity
that will make the lesson interesting and help them
remember what it was about.
So, last week I put a good hour or two into selecting
the right photos and You-Tube clip and made sure I
was prepared for the games. Apart from a bit of
prayer and a quick review of the Bible reading, I never
put too much time into this as I had heard the story
several times before.
However, the reality was our group just sitting in a
huddle on the floor asking and answering questions. It
wasn’t until Loges came in to remind us it was nearly
morning tea time, that we realised we had nearly ran
out of time!
Yes, we did do the games, the slideshow was cool (the
You-Tube clip wouldn’t work) but the best part of the
lesson was having the blessing to have the time to
listen and answer the questions of our very curious
and captivated children.
How busy do we get in
“doing” life, to make
sure children are kept
busy and have all the
right tools and
materials, when there
are times we just need
to stop and take time to
listen and talk?
Matthew 19:14
-Trish Morris

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Blurb – 29 October 2017

Category : Links

It looks like spring has sprung where we are – if
nothing else, the grass has ‘riz’. We planted trees
not long after we arrived, and every year they’re a
little bit taller; plants that were posted in a box
now are twice as tall as me. It’s really impressive
the way that without me doing anything (and I can
vouch for doing NOTHING to help lately), this stuff
just does what it’s supposed to!
As with trees, so with us. We die without water;
death takes longer but is just as certain without
food. Spiritually, we need to have our roots deep
to drink (Psalm 1), and to feed regularly (John
4:34); and growth is the result.
So, how’s your spring going?
-Ian Martin

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Blurb – Sunday 17 September 2017

Category : Links

Unpack the luggage,

carried far too high upon your back.

Undo the breadcrumb

trail you left, and trust the other, faithful track.

Unhinge your life,

from turning on a heavy fear of death.

Unchain your foot,

and tread uphill, and laugh, and lose your breath.

Upset your stomach,

eat good food more often than the sickly sweet.

Unmitigate your love,

and travel, and let calloused gravel shape your feet.

Untrain your eye,

from seeing only all that’s done you wrong.

Unhook your lungs,
and make them hearty bellows for a springtime song.


Undress yourself,

from shame and gravely guilt.

Un-tether from the leaping rock,

and dive full-height into the crystal river, free of silt.


Unbox the stifled Spirit,

who sat too long on a quiet shelf,

Unleash, relinquish,
give over, and discover there your truest self.

-Mark Day

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Renee Snell

Category : Links

Renee Snell is new on staff here at Hillcrest Baptist Church. She is our admin and reception person and loves talking to pre-schoolers about Jesus. She has been at HBC since her university days where she studied for a Bachelor of Sport and Leisure degree. She is married to Tim and they have 3 lovable rogues, Connie, Ezra and Asher.

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Blurb August 21st 2016

Category : Links

My heart is heavy as I share in the grief and pain of family and friends. This past week, I received news of a shocking fishing accident that left my uncle blind in one eye. Two days later, a friend was hospitalised for a severe heart attack. Last night, a friend’s baby boy suddenly passed away….
“Why Lord, why?” questions kept running through my mind, but there were no satisfactory answers.
I’m involved in BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) with about 100 women who meet here in our church. Currently we’re studying the book of Revelation and specifically these past weeks about Satan, suffering, perseverance….. AND the fact that God still rules supreme!!
Someone said that the thing that you focus on becomes your idol, as it takes away from time spent thinking about and worshipping God. So I’m determined to turn away from Satan’s fearful and discouraging attacks and instead focus on the truths I’ve been learning. Let me share some of them.
• No power can contend with God’s power
• God is sovereign over His purposes & their timing.
• God knows everything, but chooses what He wants to tell us & when.
• God does not promise to protect us from suffering, but in them.
• Satan is a strong adversary but, definitely, a defeated foe.
• The devil is mighty but GOD IS ALL-MIGHTY!
As I hold onto these truths, I know that God will give me His peace. May you too be encouraged, whatever your current circumstances.
(PS – this was written a week ago and I can testify that God did bring some calm into the chaos.)

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Blurb 24-05-2015

Category : Links

Am I allowed to be honest? I struggle. Oh no I hear you think – he’s going loopy, he will need stress leave. No, no, no, it’s not that kind of struggle! I struggle. Oh no I hear you think – he’s got a sin problem, a big hidden sin problem. No, no, no, it’s not sin, (I’m not saying that I don’t sin, I’m just saying that that’s not my struggle in this instance). So I struggle. Ahh I hear you think – he’s been called to a new church, a bigger church with a bigger wage and he’s not sure what to do. No, no, no, it’s not that kind of struggle, nothing as easy as that and don’t be so wishful in your thinking coz I’m hanging around for a long time yet and no amount of money would tempt me away from being with you lot. I struggle. I struggle at times to get a message together not because I can’t and not because I can’t find anything to say – but rather I struggle with what Jesus said and how Jesus did, and who Jesus calls us to be, and today’s message is a ‘struggle’ message. One that makes me struggle and squirm as I come to terms with the uncomfortableness of how the Kings subjects should be in His upside down/right way up Kingdom. Let’s allow Him to lead us into encounter this morning and if you dare, I invite you to enter into a struggle with me. Have a great day, Kevin.

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Blurb 10-05-2015

Category : Newsletter Blurb

Hi. Been pondering about things a little and came across this from Rodger E Olsen…

My experience is that the richer and more educated we evangelicals and Baptists become the less likely we are to really believe in or expect miracles. We relegate the supernatural to the inner world of persons believing that God can change people’s hearts, but we do not really believe God intervenes in the physical world. Yet the Bible is full of examples of God’s interventions in the physical world, it commands us to pray for such, and evangelical (and Catholic) Christians in the Global South almost all believe in and pray for God’s miraculous interventions—especially in healing the sick… I suspect our contemporary evangelical avoidance of the supernatural in the physical realm of reality has little to do with intellectual questions and issues. I suspect it has more to do with wanting our religion to be respectable; above all we don’t want to be viewed by the world around us as fanatics. The abuses of the supernatural seen on cable television cause us to drop it entirely. But, as the old saying goes, the cure for abuse is not disuse but proper use. We have thrown the baby out with the bathwater.

Over the years of teaching theology I have made a point of interrogating Christians who come to America to study theology from Africa, Asia and Latin America. I ask them about their view of American Christianity. Normally they are very reluctant to open up and say what they really think. But when I give them absolute freedom to be totally transparent they often say that they are shocked by American Christianity—including evangelical Christianity—because of its individualism, consumerism and lack of belief in the “spiritual world” by which they mean the supernatural. I, too, am shocked by these conditions of American evangelicalism.

What do you think? Have a great day, Kevin

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