Friday, 29 December 2017



This has been a big year for us. In February, we did lunch for 300 people. We took 60 children on the journey of a lifetime over three legs including a plane trip, a train trip, and a boat trip. In August, we moved into our new auditorium. We had a guest Arch Bishop. In October, we had a guest bishop. We had an Australian touring group perform. In November, we had a home-grown Sunday. In December, we had a chart-topping Nashville singer. We had our annual Children’s Christmas Play. We had a community carols outreach which was also outside broadcasted by WayFM. And we had our first Christmas Day service in our new auditorium with a special first-time duet from my two youngest daughters. Added to all this, we held four special water baptism services throughout the year for those who accepted Christ as their Lord and Saviour. It’s been a big year!     
In the midst of all this, we implemented a monthly Sunday night leaders training, monthly Pastors and Elders team breakfast, a monthly Home Group leaders breakfast, and a monthly Care Team breakfast (which morphed into a monthly lunch). My preaching schedule included – The 10 Principles For Living A Balanced LifeThe Journey Of A Life TimeYour New ChapterLamentations Series, 10 Guest Service messages, Understand The Book Of Revelation SeriesBy Virtue SeriesWorship Seriesand reaching Part 186 in the Jeremiah Series. Supplementing this were our Home Group study seriesName – A StoryFinding True Love, and Building A Covenant Community. In addition to this, ICI College Australia has given me the opportunity to supervise degree level Theology students around Australia to train for Christian ministry. Partly due to these demands, I relinquished my role as the tennis coach at Legana Tennis Club and officially retired. And last week, Kim and I farewelled Zoe to Melbourne so she could continue her law degree there. It’s been a big year.
 LCC-100pcSUNDAY-19LCC2017-03-30_3733 New Auditorium construction  
Big years, the kind where positive things are planned and realised, don’t just happen. They require two key things. Firstly, dedication, and secondly, dedicated people. This year could not have happened unless many dedicated people played their part. A lot was asked of our worship team this year. A lot was asked of our Board this year. A lot was asked of our staff this year. A lot was asked our Builder this year. A lot was asked our of volunteers this year. Without their dedication, we would not have had a big year.
This kind of dedication is cultivated in the Spirit by prayer. It is fuelled by prayer. It is sustained by prayer. It needs prayer. Onededicated leader on their own could not ever achieve what a dedicated team can achieve. When I consider all that the Apostle Paul achieved, it is a remarkable parallel that his level of achievement inversely parallels his own estimation of his ability to achieve things on his own. Consider Paul’s journey.
From considering himself a ‘Super-Apostle’:
Indeed, I consider that I am not in the least inferior to these super-apostles.
Second Corinthians 11:5
To considering himself the ‘least of the Apostles’: 
For I am the least of the apostles, unworthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.
First Corinthians 15:9
To considering himself to be ‘the chief of sinners’:
This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.
First Timothy 1:15
Perhaps as a result of this journey, Paul never asked for anyone to pray for him alone – and he never asked for prayer for his adverse circumstances to change. Rather, the veteran Apostle Paul always for prayer for “us” – that is, for his team.
¶ Finally, brothers, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, as happened among you,
Second Thessalonians 3:1
I think we have much to learn from the Apostle who was used to pen 75% of the New Testament and was responsible for taking the Gospel into Asia and Europe in his lifetime (which laid the foundation for the Gospel to be taken into Africa, the Americas, and Oceania (which includes Australia and New Zealand)). Paul’s achievements lead us to see that dedication and dedicated people also need the prayers of God’s people for there to be the greatest effectiveness. With this in mind, I would like to request your prayers please.
Andrew Corbett preaching
Could you please pray for us to-
  • be faithful to Christ despite whatever success might tempt us into conceit
  • have wisdom to know how to best care for people
  • hear the voice of God’s Spirit and the strength to obey
  • have sufficient physical strength to sustain the Lord’s mission
  • be able to faithfully declare the whole counsel of God’s Word without succumbing to the fear of man.
I, and my team, would greatly covet your prayers.


Pastor Andrew

Friday, 22 December 2017




Whoever gives thought to the word will discover good, and blessed is he who trusts in the LORD.
Proverbs 16:20
iToons05I’ve been thinking. We now live in a world that treasures amusement. We once lived in a world that treasured musing. I do not begrudge anyone who enjoys being amused. After all, amusement can take our minds off of our troubles. Amusement can humour and cheer us. However, it is these same benefits of amusement that can also mislead us into believing that we are meant to be happy and occupied all the time. We perhaps shouldn’t be surprised by this because many now spend the greater proportion of their time in a digitalworld where they are unwittingly tricked at every turn. In what some see as a metaphor of our age, this digital world invites us to take a front row seat not just in front of our computer screen, but in the Director’s Seat of the ‘Stage of Life’. Author of, ‘Screens And Teens‘, Dr. Kathy Koch, warns that young people in particular, especially Christian teens, are at risk of being unable to think because of their addictive involvement in the digital world. Let’s think about this…
¶ But when I thought how to understand this,
it seemed to me a wearisome task,
Psalm 73:16
Because the digital world is so vastly different from reality, it can be very difficult for digital natives to adjust back into reality. Dr. Kathy Koch (pronounced, “Cook”) says that when digital natives surf the web, they are in control. But when they interact in the world of reality  they often struggle with the reality that they are not in control of their circumstances – the real God is. In the digital world they can get an abundance of information on virtually any subject which can lead them to think that they don’t need the education which their teachers provide. But there is a world of difference between information and education. Research overwhelmingly demonstrates that students are far better able to retain taught knowledge when it is delivered to them by a person, rather than a screen. Dr. Koch also states that digital natives have greatly diminished attention spans which makes worshipful reading of Scripture virtually impossible. She pointed out that the research is clear about the difference between comprehension and retention levels between those who read from a screen, and those who read a physical book. People who read books on a screen retain less than those who read a hardcopy book. Digital natives are more likely to get ‘bored’ in the world of reality. Parents who use electronic tablets or smart-phones to occupy their children – so that they won’t get bored or need their parents attention – are retarding their children’s creativity and ability to learn, interact with others, and be patient. 
But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
Romans 8:25

To most Christians, the Bible is like a software license. Nobody actually reads it. They just scroll to the bottom and click ‘I agree’.

― Bill Maher, American TV Talkshow Host


In the digital world, the native is always presented with alternatives to their present experience. ‘Drop Down Menus’ present a digital native with alternate/optional browsing experiences. In the world of reality, the power to change ones present experience doesn’t always exist. The world of reality doesn’t offer us a ‘delete button’ for the negative experiences we go through. 
Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Second Corinthians 12:8-9
The Happiness Research Institute in Denmark undertook a study of people who use social media - How does social media effect our lives? (Facebook, twitter, etc.) A study was done with 1,100 people who use Facebook. They wanted to know how it affects our perception of reality and how we feel about our lives? They were monitored for 1 week, then the group was broken into 2. One continued to use Facebook as usual, whereas the second were asked to take a break from Facebook for a week. Then after a week, the 2 groups were surveyed again. The director did not expect to find a great deal of difference, because happiness is affected by many things - where we live, our income, our friendships, genetics, who you live with, your job ... Those who went without social media reported significantly higher levels of life satisfaction, but not only that, every indicator of happiness that they study was also improved. But their research also found this. Being exposed to other people’s happiness can have a negative impact on our own level of happiness. If social media distorts our perception of reality what does this mean for society? We are starting to understand that social media may have a real influence on why suicide rates are increasing. Being exposed to other people’s happiness makes a question as to whether life is worth living at all. Happier countries have a higher level of suicide rates than those rated lower. The World Happiness Report (published 12 months ago) reported that well-being inequality has a larger negative impact on how we feel about our lives than does economic inequality.
We live in a world of reality where bad things happen to good people. In the digital world we can airbrush away wrinkles. In the actual world we must face reality and accept it, especially the following-
  1. We are not sitting in the Director’s Chair of life – God is.
  2. We are not the central character in the story of life – God is.
  3. We are not the hero of either our life or the story unfolding around us – God is.
  4. We are not going to be happy and occupied all of the time. This reality causes us to rest in God’s love and guidance while enjoying the peace He gives despite our emotional state or circumstances. There is a world of difference between doing nothing and being still (Psalm 46:10).
  5. We have a better chance of getting what we want if we serve others and help them get what they want. God incarnate is the greatest example of what it means to serve others.
  6. We are note always going to get what we want when we want. The world of reality is designed by God to accommodate our patience. 
  7. We may acquire information digitally, but not necessarily attain knowledge presented with wisdom by a God-gifted teacher. God has ordained that genuine knowledge can only be received when we demonstrate true humility which enables us to learn from a teacher.
Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser;
teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning.
Proverbs 9:9


For those who know me, you will know that I am a digital missionary. I am not a digital native. Much to the surprise of many people, I use a pen to write in my spiral-bound notebook organiser. I tell people that this is my “think pad”. I write out by hand these weekly Pastoral articles, then type them up. I am currently producing a series of thinking radio spots which I script by hand. My current reading project is a 450 page (actual pages of paper) book on philosophy which I plan to finish this weekend. Although I do my daily Bible reading with my iPad, I still use a leather-bound printed Bible each day as well. Within my Bible I place hundreds of sticky notes which contain thoughts, comments, lists, outlines, that I have written. My Bible is highlighted and underlined. When I come to our family dinner table, I leave my phone in the other room. We never have the TV on during dinner. All of these enables me to interact better with a book; more deeply with the Sacred Text; more meaningfully with those I eat with. My great fear is that we, followers of Christ, are becoming dual citizens of two worlds – the digital and the actual – instead of being a Kingdom citizen of the real world where Christ is the Lord who then sends us as His ambassadors into a digital world of Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Instagram, Tumblr…) not become overcome by it, but to be a light to it. By doing this, I think we will be better equipped to think, contemplate, ponder, muse, be creative, still, patient, and caring of others. In addition to this, we are less likely to be susceptible to certain mental disorders which being increasingly induced by the consequences of digital addiction. 
¶ So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him.  Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.
Romans 12:1-2 THE MESSAGE

Pastor Andrew

Friday, 15 December 2017


new born‘When I was a child’ says the Apostle, ‘I spoke as a child – I thought as a child.’ The Apostle is, of course, reflecting on how the passage of time has brought with it stages of maturing. A person is born into this world utterly small – and not just physically small. A child’s view of the world is small. Their scope of consideration is small. Their vocabulary is small. The experiences are small. Thus, under the tutelage of their parents, their world becomes bigger. In fact, it is one of the primary roles of any parent to help their child to grow into a bigger person. 
Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into Him who is the head, into Christ,
Ephesians 4:15


young-boy-dressed-as-superheroGrowing bigger requires building. The Apostle said that can only happen when a person is nurtured and built up with truth (Eph. 4:15). A child needs to hear the truth – especially these truths-
  1. The world does not revolve around you.
    Be considerate of others. (Phil. 2:3)
    Big people celebrate the triumphs and joys of others.
  2. You always have reasons to be grateful.
    Despite how unfair you think life is, be more thankful. (Col. 3:15)
    Big people are thankful for what they have rather than what they think they should have.
  3. Your wealth is not measured by how much you get, but by how of it you give.
    Share your toys with others. (1Tim. 6:18)
    You will get all you want in life, if you help enough other people get what they want.” – Zig Ziglar
  4. Speak well of others who have done better than you.
    Bless and do not curse. (Rom. 12:14)
  5. Let go of offences and forgive as a lifestyle.
    Choose not to recall or rehearse to others how someone has hurt you. (Eph. 4:32)
    Big people are more bruised and bumped more than small people. The difference is that small people talk about their bruises more. 
Big people build people.
Big Churches aren’t about numbers because they are really churches of big people.
“If you go looking for a friend, you’re going to find they’re scarce. If you go out to be a friend, you’ll find them everywhere.”
-Zig Ziglar


¶ The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.
Second Corinthians 9:6
Children don’t see the big picture of life. Their view of life is very immediate and small. As a person grows up and gets a bigger outlook on life and their place in it, they realise that most of life’s difficulties come to pass not to stay. Big people recognise that life has seasons. There are times of sunshine. There are times of rain. There are times of flourishing and blooming. There are times of dormancy. Children don’t understand life’s seasons. Children rarely realise that life’s seasons have little to do with lengths of time and more to do with lessons over time.  
Big people don’t become big by accident, elapsed time, or just by the company they keep. They become big by investing into their souls, their hearts, their minds, their relationships, and their futures. 
Big churches aren’t limited by how last Sunday’s, or the coming Sunday’s, service went. They are limited by how much they invest. 


A person becomes bigger by becoming smaller. One of the clearest signs that you are in the presence of a big person is that they display the traits of teachability, keenness to learn, openness to new ways and ideas. When challenged to keep growing, the big person steps up and steps out into a time of stretching. This is why the description childishis not determined by age, but by bigness of attitude. That’s why big is not the same as old. It’s also why a person who stops growing in character and attitude becomes old before their time.
from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.
Ephesians 4:16
One of the hallmarks of a growing church is that its people are growing – especially its leaders. As Ephesians 4:16 challenges, there is always room for the growing believer to grow in love toward Christ and others. A big Christian leader is characterised by humility and love. 


Please pray for me to be building my life, investing into my life, and taking the humble steps to grow my life. Please pray for your brothers and sisters in Christ to do the same. The world is getting smaller in many ways. I think that as we each commit to our journey with Christ we can only get bigger. As we do we, will stand tall in this world of people who think they are big but are really only small. Not until they see the difference will they realise there is a difference. 
“He must increase, but I must decrease.”
John The Baptist (speaking of Christ) John 3:30
Pastor Andrew 

Friday, 8 December 2017

Hope For Diana Prince

Diana-PrinceThis week I went to see the movie, League Of Justice. It’s generally received bad reviews, and if the producers ever give me a call, I’ll tell them why. But, in the midst of a jumbled story-line and confused worldview, there were a couple of really profound lines in the movie about hope. As I recall it, the movie opens up with a line about the world is only ever truly dark when there is no hope of light. This line almost sounds spiritual – indeed, it almost comes directly out of the pages of the New Testament in a round about way. Shortly after this, the aptly named, Diana, enters a terrorist plot (where the gloating agents of evil have just skited that due to their reign of terror around the world, there are now “no believers” left) and announces: “I’m a believer!” The movie closes with the book-end statement about hope, “If you want to find hope, you have to look up!” This was one of the few times throughout the movie where I could say, “Amen!”
I agree with Diana Prince. Too many people have lost hope. They need to look up. And while many do, they still need to lift their vision, and like the Psalmist, they suffer disappointment.
¶ I look up toward the hills.
From where does my help come?
Psalm 121:1 NET
If you only look up as high as the hills you’ll soon be disappointed. Hill-sized hope is no where near high enough. Hill-sized hope is the limit of people. If we look to people to solve our problems, cure our souls, or be the source of our happiness, we may find fleeting relief, but we’ll exchange it rapidly for disappointment. 
Do not trust in princes,
or in human beings, who cannot deliver!
Psalm 146:3
But the Psalmist discovered that if he lifted his vision higher he could find the unlimited Source of hope.
My help comes from the LORD,
the Creator of heaven and earth!
Psalm 121:2
Kalel family's symbol which mean "hope"What Diana Prince didn’t say – but should have said – was, “Hope comes from looking up to God!” Curiously, the central plot of the movie Justice League is the pursuit of hope. The hero of the movie is briefly introduced in the opening scenes explaining to some children that the symbol on his chest means “hope”. He coincidentally shares a remarkable set of similarities to Christ. His name in Hebrew means “The Voice of God”. He is invincible. He dies to save the world. He is raised to life. He defeats the great enemy. He gives the world hope. And in this latest DC instalment, the world is desperately looking for hope. And so is our world. And just as in this DC world, everywhere the world looks for hope it is disappointed. This is not surprising considering that the world refuses to look up to the Source and Fountain of hope and has instead – to their own on going disappointment – looked down to the empty cisterns they have hewn for themselves. 
for my people have committed two evils:
they have forsaken Me,
the fountain of living waters,
and hewed out cisterns for themselves,
broken cisterns that can hold no water.
Jeremiah 2:13
No matter what you’re going through, God invites you to look up to Him.
“Look to Me, and be saved,
All you ends of the earth!
For I am God, and there is no other.
Isaiah 45:22 NKJV
Looking up to God involves turning to Him in a prayer for help. It involves surrendering to Him – despite what you’re going through – and despite whose fault it is. It involves trusting Him even when He doesn’t help you the way you asked or would like. Looking up to God involves praising and worshiping Him even when it’s a sacrifice. In the days to come, we won’t have to be living in a DC Comics world to find people everywhere looking for hope because we will be surrounded by them in ours. I trust that as we look up to God and draw our hope from Him it will be increasingly obvious to those in the world who are looking down into their empty cisterns of shallow relationships, momentary eroticism, numbing medication, inebriating beverages, and still feeling unloved, unwanted, purposeless, and tired, that true hope is attainable if they would just look up to its Unlimited Source. I hope that when they ask us for a reason for this hope that we have we will be ready to help them look up.
But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,
First Peter 3:14-15
Pastor Andrew
Video Player

Friday, 1 December 2017


French Philosopher, Jean-Paul Sartre
Why do we believe what we believe? Richard Dawkins has stated that belief in God is due entirely to having been raised by religious parents. Of course, this may be true for some or even for most, but it is a far too sweeping over-generalisation to be true for everybody. One wonders of course whether atheists such as Dawkins recognise that their own upbringing may have led them to believe atheism is true? After all, atheism is not the lack of belief in something, but is rather a belief system itself. For example, Jean-Paul Sartre was a French Philosopher who fought with the French Resistance during World War 2 and ended up becoming a prisoner of war. After the War he became an outspoken atheist. One wonders how much influence on his belief in atheism the horrors of war which he witnessed (and experienced) played in shaping his atheism? It seems we may all be biased in one way or another about what we will be more inclined to believe.
Hitchens brothers' contrary books Christopher and Peter Hitchens both grew up in a church-going home. But then something happened in their childhoods which deeply affected them both in different ways. The tragedy is that it involved a moral failure by a Christian which resulted in the disruption of their home-life. Older brother Christopher ended up despising God and went on to become a celebrated journalist and writer. He used his popularity and platform to espouse atheism. His resultant book, GOD IS NOT GREAT (How Religion Poisons Everything) became a best-seller. He was famously noted for saying at his debates and public talks, “There is no God and I hate Him!” Miraculously though, his brother Peter became an ardent apologist for Christianity and wrote a contrary book to his brother’s, THE RAGE AGAINST GOD (How Atheism Led Me To Faith). Both brothers had the same upbringing yet eventually viewed God and religion quite differently. Upbringing and circumstances therefore do not always correspond to someone becoming, or not becoming, a Christian. 
If Christopher was louche, hedonistic and iconoclastic, (Peter) Hitchens would be fastidious, puritanical and Christian.
The Guardian, October 22nd, 2012
Christopher and Peter Hitchens together in 1999. Christopher Hitchens died in 2011.


Yet there is little doubt that our circumstances do play a role shaping how we believe. I have mentioned Jean-Paul Sartre’s outlook of despair and eventual atheism being shaped by the trauma he endured as a World War Two prisoner of war. 
“For Sartre, the individual stands as a tragic and lonely specimen of humanity. We must look to ourselves, because there is no God and no purpose or meaning in the universe”
Living Issues In Philosophy, 1995, p. 338
Christopher Hitchens was clearly shaped the moral failure of a Christian leader who should have been a model of godliness and character. In the nineteenth century, German philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche, was turned off God by the cold harshness of his Christian father and grandfathers who all Lutheran ministers. His father died when he was quite young and he was raised by his mother, sister, grandmother, and two maiden aunts (“Living Issues In Philosophy”, Titus, page 332). He attacked Christianity and coined the phrase, “God is dead”. He taught that humanity must be unshackled from the restrictions of Christian morality and eliminate the weak from society to produce a society of “├╝bermensch” (‘supermen’). At the age of 45 he had a complete mental breakdown and died in a mental asylum 11 years later. Nietzsche was sadly shaped in a very negative way by his circumstances.
Even Christians are subject to our theological beliefs about God and the Bible being shaped by our circumstances as well. During the 1500s, and on, the Reformers (Luther, Calvin, Knox, Zwingli, etc.) were revolted by the spiritual and moral degradation of the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church. They wrote pamphlets and published books decrying the Pope and the Roman Church as the fulfilment of what the Book of Revelation forecast as ‘the Harlot of Babylon’ (Revelation 18). The authors of the Westminster Confession even declared the Pope to be the ‘Antichrist’. Despite this being exegetically impossible, their circumstances had shaped how they had interpretted the Scriptures.
ARTICLE 25:VI. There is no other head of the Church but the Lord Jesus Christ.[13] Nor can the Pope of Rome, in any sense, be head thereof; but is that Antichrist, that man of sin, and son of perdition, that exalts himself, in the Church, against Christ and all that is called God.[14]The Westminster Confession of Faith
 As recently as the 1960s and 70s many mainline denominational church leaders were critical of Pentecostalism and what was being called the Charismatic Renewal where many Christians were claiming that they had received an experience with the Holy Spirit whereby they were able to pray in tongues and exercise certain spiritual gifts such as speaking in tongues, interpreting tongues, prophesying, exercising words of knowledge and wisdom, healing the sick and casting out demons. Conservative mainline denominational church leaders had been erroneously led to believe that such gifts of the Holy Spirit ceased when the New Testament Canon was completed. (This was based on an exegetically impossible understanding of “when that which is perfect has come, these things will be done away with” [1Cor. 13:8-10].) But then a funny thing happened to many of these mainline denominational church leaders – they themselves were baptised with the Holy Spirit and began to pray in tongues and exercise the very gifts of the Holy Spirit they had just been protesting were done away with! It is estimated now that there are millions upon millions of Pentecostal Christians around the world who all testify to having been baptised with the Holy Spirit subsequent to having been born-again by the Holy Spirit – and I am one of them.


We need to be very careful that we do not allow our circumstances to blind us to the truth. Just because your circumstances tell you that because you have not heard God, it does not mean that God does not speak today. Just because your circumstances tell you that because you have not been blessed, it does not mean that God does not bless people. Just because your circumstances tell you that because you have not been healed, it does not mean that God does not heal today. Just because your circumstances tell you that because your prayers have not been answered it does not mean that God does not answer prayers today. Just because your circumstances tell you that because you have not been delivered from your sin it does not mean that God no longer saves and delivers people from sin’s bondage. Just because your circumstances tell you that because you have not been baptised with the Holy Spirit so that you have been enabled to pray in tongues and exercise the gifts of the Spirit it does not mean that God no longer baptises believers with the Holy Spirit so that they can. 
If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
Luke 11:13
Our circumstances change, but truth never does. God’s Word is true, but our interpretations of it are sometimes more circumstantial than true.
Pastor Andrew