Mar 172019
 

After my sermon last Sunday, Jenni Hinspeter and I had a long conversation and a good pray around some of the particular issues that arise for us around the Sabbath as single people in vocational ministry. Later in the day, as I was driving home from something where I was the only single person, Brenda, who would often have been there, rang knowing that it is often a transition that I find difficult. It was one of those times when I was both thankful for God’s provision (on this occasion even before I realised I had a need of it!) and Brenda’s thoughtfulness and response to the Holy Spirit’s prompt.

During the week I also read a book, The 7 Myths of Singleness, by Sam Allbery, a good covering of lots of the myths around singleness, written by someone who is both realistic about the struggles of singleness and also recognises the many gifts and opportunities that singleness brings. I’d highly recommend it as a useful book for people to read whatever your situation in life.

All this has got me thinking a bit more broadly – about how we might utilise the benefits and gifts of our circumstances in life for the sake of others; how to support each other in both the similar and the very different struggles and needs we have in our current life situations; and how to recognise and act upon the needs that others have in their current stage and season that we are able, often without all that much effort, to offer assistance in. There are lots of ways in which our community does this well. I could tell story after story of the ways in which people have loved others well within and beyond our community, both in similar and in very different life situations.  But it’s so easy for us to get quite focused and consumed with our lives and all the demands on us and to not see each other’s needs and struggles and the ways in which we could bring life and ease the burdens of one another. So often just a little thoughtfulness, creativity and an offer of help bring  much life to others, and we may find ourselves substantially blessed as a result. As well, something that will make an immense difference to another can be incorporated into what we are already doing.  (On that note, thanks to the many people who regularly include me in meals, especially when I need to be around Cottesloe.) Of course, sometimes what we offer will have a significant cost – and that’s appropriate; we do have a Lord who calls us to die to ourselves – but often it will be something that just takes some willingness to consider the needs of others and to step a little beyond our own everyday life. So I encourage you to reflect this week about how you might further support those around you in ways that are low weight for you but that would be of significant benefit to them, to pray around this and then to act on it.

Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers (Galatians 6:10).

Blessings,
Barb

 

 

Mar 032019
 

At St Philips we are keen for everyone to be continually living more deeply in a three-dimensional life, individually and corporately, one where we are connecting UP with God, IN with each other and OUT with the world. I wonder how you see your OUT dimension going? Jesus came into the world, lived, died and rose again, that we might have a relationship with God – the ultimate act of self-giving and living OUT for others. He called disciples to [continue reading…]

Feb 172019
 

Place is important to many of us embodied creatures. This week I’ve been up to New Norcia for an overnight retreat by myself. It was a lovely time. . . stillness, rest, reading, prayer. It’s a quarterly rhythm that brings me renewed life and after a very full few months it was a much-needed couple of days. What struck me is the way in which I quickly went into the space of rest, prayer and reflection. Part of that is [continue reading…]

Jan 272019
 

I thought I’d follow in Kieran’s footsteps and reflect on my top books of 2018. Two of my favourites were also in Kieran’s top 5: Jack Deere’s personal memoir, Even in our Darkness (a complete page turner) and This is Our Time: Everyday Myths in Light of the Gospel by Trevin Wax (so good that I read/listened to it twice in a few months). I had a year of series/authors. Here are three authors / series that had me engaged [continue reading…]

Jan 202019
 

http://media.blubrry.com/stpips/p/stphilips.net.au/main/media/SR-20190120-Barb-Totterdell.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 29:55 — 10.3MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSS | Why not subscribe? Reading 1      Luke 6:12-19 Reading 2      Luke 10:1-12

Dec 232018
 

December . . . So often so tricky for so many people; either too busy or too quiet; the end of the year bringing pressures that are real, imagined or put upon us; events that feel like obligations; spending time with people who  we would not necessarily choose to hang out with. For some of us there’s great things in the mix too: fun, celebratory times with good friends and family; the finish of school, work and other commitments for [continue reading…]

Dec 092018
 

As we come to the end of the year, I’d like to thank the many people who have led and served our children and youth this year. There are so many of you. Firstly, there are the many people who have been involved as leaders or helpers of our crèche, Kidschurch and youth times on a Sunday morning – people who have prepared, been present, loved, taught, modelled and cared; people who have sought to assist our young people to [continue reading…]

Dec 022018
 

http://media.blubrry.com/stpips/p/stphilips.net.au/main/media/SR-20181202-Barb-Totterdell.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 15:23 — 5.3MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSS | Why not subscribe? Reading 1       Luke 1:39-45 Reading 2       Luke 1: 46-56  

Nov 182018
 

I’m passionate about God’s people being equipped and ready to share their faith in the contexts they operate in. This will include families, neighbourhoods, workplaces, schools, sporting/hobby clubs, and plenty of other places and relationships. I’m also passionate about us as Christians going into spaces where we can shine as a light, make a difference by our presence and actions, and take up opportunities appropriate to the context, to share the good news of Jesus. I’m particularly conscious of the [continue reading…]