Climate Change – What Shall We Make of it?

Climate change. We hear about it all the time. From pandas on our breakfast cereal cartons to water temperature instructions on clothing labels, the doomsday message of imminent disaster is being drummed into us from every side and through every medium. The headlines are convincing, and there are always plenty of scientific studies and charts showing steady Co2 level increases, temperature increases, and sea level rises. But could this all be wrong? Continue reading

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The Necessity of Love

Love Heart in Sand
I’m not going to contribute to the fascinating discussion of the different Greek words for love in the New Testament. I’m just going to start this post right here and say –

Without love, there is no real life. Neither is it loving to end someone’s life.
Killing someone is not love, no matter what the euthanasia campaigners would have us believe. Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.” (John 15:13) Love is not taking someone else’s life –  it is giving them yours.

Even if you don’t give your life – if you don’t actually die for your friends, love is still about giving. It’s about forsaking yourself in the interests of others.

Jesus didn’t only love His friends – He loved His enemies. In fact, He even died for them, and  for you. Because you were an enemy of God. But He sent His own Son to reconcile us to Himself  – while we were still His enemies, Christ died for us. Now God even calls us His children!

How much does this say about your love? Is your every thought, word, deed and desire rooted and grounded in love? (Ephesians 3:17) Are you truly a loving person?

We are called to love. And now it’s time – for you. To love your God with your whole heart, mind, soul and strength. To love your neighbour as yourself.

Because God is Love.
And He’s commanded it.

With love,
Rhoda

I’m Guest Posting on Shining Arrows

Good morning, friends! Today I’m super excited to present to you the first ‘triple guest post’ on Shining Arrows. Rhoda (from Serving With Joy) and her family crashed here last night and we’ve been having a ball ever since.

We thought it would be novel to do a triple guest post – in other words, Rhoda, Sophia and I would do a combined awkward and awesome post… Even though it isn’t quite Thursday yet.DSCF8830

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Continue Reading…

Ask, and You Will Receive

footprints

I’ll start by giving you something to do: Read Matthew 7:7-12.
Now, I’ve always had this little niggling fear about those verses. I’ve been afraid that I might once pray for something, and never have my prayer answered. But the minister of my home church explained this in a recent sermon…

Today I am guest posting on Danella’s blog, Footprints in the Sand. Click here to read the rest of the post 🙂

Did you watch Ken Ham debating Dr Bill Nye yesterday? You can still watch the debate at debatelive.org. And this afternoon at 2 NZT, Ken Ham and Dr Georgia Purdom will be discussing the debate. (You can see it here.)

One more thing – today it is 174 years since the Treaty of Waitangi was signed! There is a lot of controversy about the signing, translation and meaning of the Treaty. I have read, and can recommend, The Great Divide, by Ian Wishart. I don’t agree with absolutely everything he says, but definitely good reading on the topic of early New Zealand History.

In Christ,
Rhoda

Guest post from Aviel – Trusting God

In all my childhood I dreamed about so many things. I dreamed about being a woman, living an important life, and doing something to lighten the burden of this filthy, dark earth, bringing a little hope in the midst of despair. Right at this moment, on the 7th of December, 2013 at 12:26pm, I’m still dreaming, yet my dreams have strayed from the simple aspirations of childhood. I no longer have that complete and certain confidence in my beliefs, my dreams, my Almighty God.

Father Daughter Dance blog post pic no. 4 (1) final 3

When I was a small child, I thought my father could do anything. He was my inspiration and example in standing up for the Gospel, facing difficulties with the Lord’s strength, and living by the Word of God. My father was able and willing to lead me through life, teaching, guiding, advising, and correcting me.

If only I could trust my Lord Jesus as I did my father. If only I could turn to Him with every problem, lean on Him through every difficulty, have faith in Him to guide my path when I am lost, and trust my every dream and hope to His protection.

In the meantime I am here now, trying to cling to my childhood, striving to trust my Heavenly Father, trying to understand all these new responsibilities. But at the same time I still have to cling to my old innocent hope that has guided me through the time, and given me a purpose and a direction. But even more importantly, I must cling to my everlasting light that truly can never fail – Jesus.

Do you ever struggle with an unknown time, or have doubts? Remember to always cling to the hope we can find in our Saviour.

Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion,
which cannot be moved, but abides forever.
As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
so the Lord surrounds his people, from this time forth and forevermore.  Psalm 125:1-2

Hello!aviel (1)

This is Aviel Gonen. I am really happy to be on Serving With Joy once more! I used to co-author this blog – I was writing alongside my good friend Rhoda.
To tell you a little about myself, I am 12 years old. I was born in Telaviv, Israel. My family and I moved to New Zealand because my father wanted to study at a Bible College in the North Island. After 2 years of studying, we had to go back to Israel because our Visas expired. 2 Days before our flights, my father was offered a place in Chosen People Ministries – sharing the Gospel with Israeli travelers here in NZ. We moved to Oamaru, on the South Island of NZ, because most of the backpackers go there. We had some great opportunities, and I also talk to them alongside my father.
While in Oamaru, I got to know the Newtons better, and we have been great friends ever since. I also started Serving With Joy with Rhoda, but then continued writing on my own blog – Crowned in Glory. We have moved to Mosgiel now and continue to serve the Lord in the ministry. It’s great to have been working with Rhoda on this post, she is such a good writer, and an inspiration to me as a young woman. 

Blessings and Love,
Aviel Gonen