August 9, 2022

Service and Readiness of Daily Life 07-08-2022

7th August 2022 (Pentecost 9)
Sermon Title: Service and Readiness in Daily Life

(Luke 12:32–40)

                                                                                  By Heeyoung Lim 

Many people live in fear because of war, the economy, global warming, unemployment, hunger, poverty, homelessness, disease, and death. It looks impossible to escape. Even in our daily life, people are bullied and neglected physically and emotionally, and sometimes they are abused mentally and spiritually. 

Jesus offers a word of comfort in a threatening world: “Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom” (v. 32). It opens us to the blessings that God is prepared to give. Do we want to live lives of giving? Jesus says, “Sell your possessions and give to the poor”, calling on his followers to place their confidence in the imperishable things of heaven. In accordance with Jesus’ word, where our treasure is, there our heart will be also. In some points of view, “giving” seems to lead to deprivation and desperation, but the gospel promises that giving from what we have will make us mindful of the God of blessing, and ready to receive the gifts that God offers. Do we live our lives as the master’s servants, God’s children, and Jesus’ disciples? 

The delight of his life is to find ways to give not just daily needs but his whole kingdom to you. May we be freed from worry and material things. Dedication to Jesus is more than becoming worry-free. Christian dedication is to kingdom service, not worldly goods. We are part of God’s kingdom and do the work He gives us to do. May we not let anxiety rule our life. God will give us His kingdom. I hope and pray that we can concentrate on being God’s instruments to establish His kingdom here on earth. 

But how do we do all this? Today’s text invites us to tuck the bottom of our robes into our belt and trim and light our lamps, so we are ready to serve God. A servant of the kingdom is always on call and has no time for delay. No time to go out to buy oil. No time to light the lamps so they will keep on burning. No time to adjust our clothing so we can run to the duty the Master entrusts. 

It means that the Master calls us His servants. Jesus wants us to be ready to open the door and to carry out the tasks He has planned for us. This is especially true in the light of the second coming. We must be ready to move when Christ returns. It’s time to hear God’s words, serve others, and set out to complete the task. Are we worrying about material goods? Are we serving the Lord and His kingdom? When Christ comes, may we be ready to move with him.

I believe that we can be serving the Lord and others in the present and preparing for the future at the same time. As in verses 37 – 38, God wants us to be alert until Christ comes again. No spare time allowed. He may come when we least expect him, in the middle of the night. May we be alert and be blessed.

Heavenly treasures give no cause for worry, but earthly treasures will be caused for worry constantly. Our heart, the center of emotions and mental activities, will concentrate on where we have our treasures. Our identity is determined by where our heart is. Many people Ignore God and spend their physical and emotional energy on the world’s goods and earthly success while many Christians trust God and spend their efforts on the matters of the kingdom of God.

The priority toward God and His kingdom should not be replaced by our earthly desire. May we not let possessions become the focus of life. May we not worry about daily needs but focus on Christ’s kingdom and trust God to provide daily needs. Waiting in difficulties is not easy in an impatient world. Our busy life or uncertainty is rooted in anxiety and fear about the future. What would happen if we really entrusted the future up to God? God will care for you. 

In today’s text, the eschatology or consummation focuses not so much on the end times as on the end ways. The consistent message throughout the passage is not, “Be ready so that you will avoid punishment,” but, rather, “Be ready so that you will receive blessing.” After all, those who are ready when the master returns will be the recipients of a heavenly feast (vv. 37–38). Living, loving, and serving are our happiness and blessings in Christ.

Today’s text claims that our ultimate concern is God’s kingdom, because it was God’s pleasure to include us in God’s reign. What we need, accumulate, and possess in life is transitory as just time itself. God’s blessings for us empower us to use our talents, possessions, and time to live and serve for the kingdom of God in the present as we hope and expect Christ’s second coming in the future.

The prepared ones are those who strive to live and serve faithfully in the present, hoping for the future and expecting Christ’s return. Jesus’ followers prepare for Christ’s return, not personal pleasure in the master’s absence. Jesus calls us to lives of faithfulness, being ever ready to participate in the reign of God.

In our daily life, there are many distractions that pull away from God’s word, and many plans and works that divert attention from the things of God. God wants to give us His kingdom and blessings. The things of God are to be given the most urgent priority in every Christian’s life. God’s tender and attentive care leads and follows you. God promises to surprise with the gift of the kingdom those who stand ready and waiting to receive this special treasure. If we trust God, we will store up our heavenly treasures. Nothing can destroy us and our treasure there. May we obey God, practice His word, follow Him until the very end.

I would like to invite you to ponder where and when such a gracious God has been encountered in the past. Was there a time when you were brave, patient, and peaceful in the face of a crisis? May we be exemplary servants in the present and trust in God’s provision for the future.

Thanks be to God! Amen.
(Ref. Bible, commentaries, theological books, UCA materials) 

Order of Service and Notices 07-08-2022

pastedGraphic.pngPLEASE STAND FOR ENTRY OF THE BIBLE 

SERVICE OF APPROACH

CALL TO WORSHIP

WELCOME

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY

PRAYER

TIS 462            Now We Come Our Heavenly Father     

    

SERVICE OF THE WORD

READINGS                       Luke 12:32 – 40   

TIS 745                                  Seek Ye First  

  

CHILDREN TIME 

SERMON:    Service and Readiness in Daily Life        

               [Sermon on Web / Hardcopies at the Door after worship]           

TIS 599 (ii)                  Take my Life and Let It Be        

SERVICE OF RESPONSE

JOYS AND CONCERNS
PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION 

NOTICES – OFFERTORY 

TIS 158                 God Has Spoken by His Prophets       

HOLY COMMUNION  

BENEDICTION          God Be with You (v. 3)  

NOTICES:

Prayer Topics 

          1. Leighmoor Uniting Church & Church Members

          2. Protection for Families and Friends 

          3. Healing for The Sick & People Who Are in Need 

          4. Peace, Unity, and Justice in Nations 

          5. Protection from Violence, Racism, and Abuse

          6. Prayers around COVID & Across Australia

          7. Care and recovery of each part of God’s creation

          8. People of Ukraine and Russia & Sri Lanka

          9. European countries and people who have been    

              affected by heatwaves and bushfires

Condolences: The Death of Arthur Edmund de Silva 

                        (Sandra David’s brother)

Sunday School @Fellowship Hall 

Morning Tea @Fellowship Hall 

Church Council Meeting @Middle Room

Sunday, 14th August 

   

 

God’s Faithfulness 31-08-2022

GOD’S FAITHFULNESS

Luke 12: 13-21 by Geoff Serpell; 31 July 2022

Today’s lectionary gospel reading is about a man who is already wealthy and who, because of a bumper crop, found himself with more wealth than he could point a stick at. The harvest was coming out of his ears. He said to himself, “I will store it all away, take early retirement and eat, drink and be merry. “He assumed he was covered for the years to come, only that he didn’t have years. That very night he died. He assumed that his future was secure, but he had no future to secure. The truth is that no amount of planning and no amount of wealth can ensure a secure future.

In recent times we have heard about ambulances waiting to discharge their patients into overfull hospital wards. Years of running our health system like a business has come back to bite us. A certain cancer doctor resigned his position after 23 years working in Victoria’s public health system. This doctor was the sort of doctor the system needs. He cares for his patients, which means sitting at the side of a dying patient for 20 minutes, not talking, not doing, just being a presence. 

This was a doctor who still wanted to listen to patients and understand their needs rather than just shove them through. Budgets are now framed on throughput, squeezing more and more patients through for less and less funding which erodes the quality of care. The system has no place for a doctor who sits at a beside for 20 minutes without doing anything you could bulk bill for. So, he quit like many others. No place for a person who values people over profits.

The context is entirely different, but the same values are under examination in today’s gospel reading. Someone in the crowd comes to Jesus and says, “Rabbi, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me”.  Family disputes today over breaking up an estate are never pretty where usually the lawyers are the only big winners. 

In Israel at the time of our story, the selling up option was not on. The family inheritance was mostly the family farm. The Hebrew’s sense of connection to their land was like our Aboriginal people, you can’t just sell it off. Even today how would you divide land where one half has a creek running through it and the other half is near desert.

Jan and I in the market for a buyer of our land, in the family since 1958. We want to stay in Highett hence we have signed with Ryman who are building a Retirement Village at Graham Road Highett. We want to stay in our home till the unit is available maybe until October next year. Meanwhile we are decluttering!! Fortunately, the family is very much on side, and we keep them posted with a ball by ball description of events. I may end up writing another book.

Back in Israel, the procedure to get a ruling on such matters was to find a friendly Rabbi to agree on your proposition. This of course allowed some Rabbis to make a quick quid and help pay off the mortgage on the beach house down at Joppa. Jesus came at this problem from a different angle not wanting to arbitrate because there would be no reconciliation with the brother arising from an adverse ruling. A no win situation.

It would have been a bit like a woman and her son where, after putting in $20 a week each to buy lottery tickets and actually won $4.2 million dollars. But the son immediately claimed that he’d bought that ticket with his own money. The mother who said that their relationship had previously been “loving and close” sued him for her half. You can just hear the mother asking the lawyer: “tell my son to divide the family winnings with me.” Once you bring in the lawyers to resolve a family dispute, you might win the dispute but you’re unlikely to still have a family. 

Now the bloke in Jesus’ story has about eight times the harvest he expected, and it will not all fit in the barns, so he must decide what to do. What most jews would have done in the circumstances were to give thanks to God for this great blessing and then celebrate with friends by throwing a party. The usual thing done in those days also was to walk down to the town gates and discuss it with the elders who were good at solving problems of the universe. 

Our man does not do anything he should have. He gives thanks to no one, and he celebrates on his own. When he wants advice, he talks to himself. That’s what it says. His answer to himself is to tear down the barns and build bigger ones. You can imagine why this bloke has no one else to talk to. He’s the sort of character who would sell his own grandmother if there was a buck in it. The sort that no one wants as a friend.

Jesus prefaced his story by saying that your life does not consist in the abundance of your possessions and now he has set up this pathetic creature who’s lived as though life was just a case of “He who dies with the most toys wins”. Jesus was saying to this man “How much is it worth to win this one? Will your life really be better if you destroy your family to get your hands on the inheritance?”

We are bombarded with images that tell us over and over that our life consists in driving that car, having such a piece of furniture, a certain fragrance, or the upmarket glass of wine. Not only can we have it but, the inference is, we deserve to have it all. Buy up and the economy will be better off, with or without Afterpay. 

An individual’s life does not consist in an abundance of possessions. A societies’ life does not consist in the profit dividends of its essential services. Jesus points us back to what our lives do consist of: our inter-connectedness with God, with one another, with our world. The web of connections which you can and do take with you. 

Jesus came to reconnect us with the sources of life, with love, with care, with joy, with the very God of life.

At this communion table, God places the bread of life and the life blood of the universe in our hands and says, “Eat, Drink. This is my body given for you, that you might have life. At this table, Jesus invites you into a relationship with God and with everyone who gathers at this table. The choice is yours. At which table will you find the life you want? 

If your busy having a conversation with yourself about where you will store all the things, you really want for the rest of your life then you will probably find nothing of value at this table and you will walk on by.  But if you’re sick of living like an island, working like a robot, and being treated like a ledger entry, then at this table you will find the way out. Ordinary things of no monetary worth, but priceless if you are looking for the way back into connection with the Spirit of the Universe and with those who are travelling into fullness of life. 

Order Of Worship and Notices 31-08-2022

WELCOME TO WORSHIP

PLEASE STAND FOR ENTRY OF THE BIBLE

SERVICE OF APPROACH

CALL TO WORSHIP
WELCOME
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY PRAYER

LP 62

READINGS

TIS 491

Be Still for the Presence of the Lord

SERVICE OF THE WORD

Psalm 43 & Luke 12:13 – 21 Father Welcomes All His Children

CHILDREN TIME

SERMON: God’s Faithfulness

[Sermon on Web / Hardcopies at the Door after worship]

TIS 685 Lord I Come to You SERVICE OF RESPONSE

JOYS AND CONCERNS PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION NOTICES – OFFERTORY

LP 20 In Christ Alone BENEDICTION God Be with You (v. 2)

 

NOTICES: Prayer Topics

  1. Leighmoor Uniting Church & Church Members
  2. Protection for Families and Friends
  3. Healing for The Sick & People Who Are in Need
  4. Peace, Unity, and Justice in Nations
  5. Protection from Violence, Racism, and Abuse
  6. Prayers around COVID & Across Australia
  7. Care and recovery of each part of God’s creation
  8. People of Ukraine and Russia & Sri Lanka
  9. European countries and people who have been

    affected by heatwaves and bushfires

Sunday School @Fellowship Hall Morning Tea @Fellowship Hall

Friday Fellowship @Middle Room Friday, 5th August 10AM

Presbytery’s Worship Leader Training

Saturday, 6th August 10am-3pm @Glen Waverley UC

Church Council Meeting @Middle Room Sunday, 14th August

Faithful Prayer and Response 24-07-2022

24th July 2022 (Pentecost 7)
Sermon Title: Faithful Prayer and Response
(Psalm 85: 1-13 & Luke 11:1–13)

                                                                                  By Heeyoung Lim 

Looking back to the past, the psalmist reflected upon God’s mercies displayed in previous years. Remembering God’s mighty working in the past brings confidence in the present. The psalm 85 recalls God’s past blessings to his people, and the psalmist calls for God to restore and revive his people, remembering God’s favour in the past. Their restoration was not only a physical relocation to their land but a spiritual one which includes their relationship with God that had been greatly affected. God forgave the sins of His people, set aside all his wrath, and turned from his fierce anger. It was a remarkable display of divine mercy and grace toward his disobedient people.

The psalmist asks God to grant salvation, bringing about their revival and restoration and wants that the same divine mercy be granted to their present troubles. (vv. 4-7) The word “restore us again, O God our Saviour” is a desperate request that God’s favour be once more extended in this present hour. The phrase “put away your displeasure toward us” indicated that their present crisis was because of their own sin. (v.4) This was a plea for the spiritual awakening of God’s people, a petition that God would restore their hearts with renewed devotion toward Him. If God would revive them, they would rejoice again. But reversely, there can be no true rejoicing without spiritual revival.

The psalmist requested, “Show us your unfailing love and grant us your salvation out of our present problems and spiritual apathy.” (v.7) The psalmist confessed, “I will listen to what God the LORD will say” and believed that His salvation is near. Such salvation is reserved for those who fear Him and His name. Such a God-sent revival would cause his glory to dwell in our land. The deepest longing of the psalmist’s heart is God’s presence. The restoration of His people would make known His greatness and majesty to all. (v.9) God promises peace and salvation to those who fear Him. 

In today’s text, love and faithfulness meet together, and his unconditional, steadfast, loyal love will work together with his faithfulness. Also, righteousness and peace will work together in perfect harmony. All four of these spiritual qualities are expressions of God’s abundant favour toward his people. God’s blessing surrounds his people. The LORD will indeed give what is good, namely, love, faithfulness, righteousness, and peace. (vv. 11-12) In addition, wherever God’s presence is in the restoration of his people, righteousness will be clearly seen in the lives of God’s people. (13)

Psalm 85 asks God to “revive us again,” to “speak peace to God’s people” (vv. 6, 8). The psalm reflects speaking and listening, a conversation rather than a monologue, just as the last lines of Luke 11:1–13 show. You won’t give your child a snake instead of a fish. As Jesus taught the disciples to pray, we ask for our daily bread; it is important for deep-down listening to know what nourishment we need for that day. May we listen as well as speak when we pray.

Seeing Jesus at prayer made the disciples want to imitate him. Jesus’ disciples saw that Jesus’ actions each day came out of his prayer life with God and wanted to learn to pray from Jesus. In Luke 11, Jesus taught them a model prayer, and this prayer contains the essence of all prayer. The Lord’s Prayer praises God, seeks daily needs, asks for deliverance from temptation, and promises to forgive others in seeking forgiveness for oneself. Prayer is an essential part of the life of one who follows Jesus. 

Christians have come to know this prayer as The Lord’s Prayer, Jesus’ Prayer, or The Prayer Jesus Taught. In the Lord’s prayer, addressing God as holy or hallowed sets God apart from the world. The words of prayer proclaim a great hope: God’s way of being and God’s desire will be present in the world. The next prayers are to ask God to provide three basic needs – sustaining the world by providing food, restoring individuals and communities by forgiveness, and protecting the world. 

In our prayer and life, we depend on God to take away our sins. However, we know that forgiveness is not just an activity of God, we are also responsible to forgive those who treat us wrong. It is not a business transaction or give and take issue, rather, it is a process of focusing on godliness and not on worldliness. May we pray that God will transform our nature so that we become more like Jesus.

In Jesus and his preaching, the kingdom of God has been seen on earth. We pray that the day will come when the kingdom will be seen in its fullness and its permanence even though we do not know when. May we pray that God’s reign will have come, and His will be fully achieved.

Prayer is not just concerned with recognizing God and establishing his kingdom, but it is also individual and personal, asking for the necessities. However, prayer never becomes individualistic and selfish. We pray not just for ourselves but for all God’s people and the world. In all circumstances, may the intimate Father-child relationship be maintained. Prayer is an intimate talk between God and people and invites us to enter an intimate relationship with God.

Jesus got to the point of his parable: Ask God. Seek something from God. Knock expectantly at God’s door. The loving Father will open the door and provide what we need if we depend on the Father’s goodness and love. Faithful prayer will find answers even when those prayers are petitions for personal need. (9)

In Jesus’ parable, a friend comes to dire needs and knocks on your door late at night asking for bread. In the story, we see the desperate need, but the situation is for a family to sleep in a one-room late night. In this undesirable situation, friendship might not be strong enough to force the sleeper to awake and meet the visitor’s needs. However, the person would be shamed and dishonoured if he did not help a friend in need. It is because of “being put to shame” rather than just persistence or boldness.

Jesus describes further to whom we are praying and uses parables to emphasize God’s response to our prayer. In today’s text, even the least suitable parents will provide basic care for a child. The message to the disciples and to all hearers of this text, including us, is that God is good. God will always hear and respond, not because we are worthy, but because God’s nature is generous and loving.

Jesus said to them, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” (v.9) This week, we are invited to visualize ourselves asking, seeking, and knocking unceasingly to be confident that to persist in prayer is to move forward in faith, hope, and love. Prayer is the work of the people, and people will express prayer in many ways. It will be at the very heart of our acts of faith. Some of us who have been long and persistent in prayer might have felt helpless in the face of extreme tragedy and pain. In many moments, however, prayer is often our only response. Faithful prayer has the potential to build faith communities through hospitality, support, and compassion.

God is good and always hears and responds. Prayer praising God and persistently asking Him to meet one’s needs represents an integral part of the dedicated life. Jesus’ disciples will ask God for the Holy Spirit to lead their lives with faithful prayer and response. May we pray to God every day, praising Him and seeking His provisions for our life and the world. In the love of Christ, may spiritual revival and restoration take place in our life, in our faith communities, and in the world through our faithful prayer and response.

Thanks be to God! Amen.
(Ref. Bible, commentaries, theological books, UCA materials) 

Order of Service and Notices 24-07-2022

 

pastedGraphic.png Worship at LEIGHMOOR UCA

Sunday 24th July 2022 – 9.30 a.m.

PENTECOST 7  

WELCOME TO WORSHIP

pastedGraphic_1.pngPLEASE STAND FOR ENTRY OF THE BIBLE 

SERVICE OF APPROACH

CALL TO WORSHIP

WELCOME

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY

PRAYER

TIS 217 (i)                         Love Divine      

    

SERVICE OF THE WORD

READINGS           Psalm 85:1-13 & Luke 11:1–13   

TIS 650                 Brother, Sister Let Me Serve You      

  

CHILDREN TIME 

SERMON:       Faithful Prayer and Response       

               [Sermon on Web / Hardcopies at the Door after worship]           

TIS 745                                  Seek Ye First   

SERVICE OF RESPONSE

JOYS AND CONCERNS
PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION 

NOTICES – OFFERTORY 

TIS 154                      Great Is Your Faithfulness       

BENEDICTION          God Be with You (v. 1)  

NOTICES:

Prayer Topics 

          1. Leighmoor Uniting Church & Church Members

          2. Protection for Families and Friends 

          3. Healing for The Sick & People Who Are in Need 

          4. Peace, Unity, and Justice in Nations 

          5. Protection from Violence, Racism, and Abuse

          6. Prayers around COVID & Across Australia

          7. Care and recovery of each part of God’s creation

          8. People of Ukraine and Russia & Sri Lanka

          9. European countries and people who have been    

              affected by heatwaves and bushfires

Sunday School @Feloowship Hall 

Morning Tea @Fellowship Hall 

Congregational Lunch @Cheltenham RSL

Today, 12pm, 289 Centre Dandenong Road, Cheltenham

Friday Fellowship @Middle Room 

Friday, 5th August 10AM

Presbytery’s Worship Leader Training 

Saturday, 6th August 10am-3pm 

@Glen Waverley UC 

                     CHURCH CONTACTS

Minister: Rev Heeyoung Lim 

M: 0432 054 369 E: hyfilm12@gmail.com 

Website: www.leighmoorunitingchurch.org 

Faithful Listening and Dedication 17-07-2022

17th July 2022 (Pentecost 6)
Sermon Title: Faithful Listening and Dedication
(Colossians 1:24 – 29 & Luke 10:38 – 42)

                                                                                  By Heeyoung Lim 

Today’s text focuses on Jesus’ teaching about the importance of grounding our lives in faith. Martha and Mary are important to Jesus. Jesus and the disciples come to their village and are welcomed, invited into their home, and provided with food and fellowship. Mary places herself at the feet of Jesus rather than taking the culturally assigned role of providing the physical necessities of hospitality. It was a surprising turn of expectations in those times, because the spot was the traditional place for the male disciples of a teacher at that time. However, Jesus affirms Mary’s choice to learn from him. 

To those who perceive God at work in Jesus, there is much more going on than normal observers. Jesus is the promised Messiah who will reign all over the world with God’s never-ending love. Mary’s insight into Jesus’ mission shows one thing that is needful for a disciple of Jesus – hearing and responding to the word of God.

We are called to listen to God’s word, and then let it shape our lives each day. In God’s reign, Christ is our centre and holds all together. Which customs and traditions are blocking us from faithfully listening and responding to God’s word? In what ways are our faithful listening and dedication demonstrated and conveyed in our faith journey? May we place Jesus in the centre of our life by reflection on Christ and the way of God’s reign.

When Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made, her speech was centred on herself rather than Jesus. Though she refers to Jesus as ‘Lord’, she was concerned to engage his assistance in her plans rather than Jesus’ words or Maria’s needs. 

Sometimes people’s needs can be out of focus and misplaced. Even Christians are dedicated to fulfilling the world’s expectations rather than Jesus’. At the crossroads of decision making, Martha had chosen necessary hospitality and social obligation, but Mary made the choice to hear Christ’s Word. Jesus would not take away from Mary the blessing and opportunity. Life has one essential need to hear and obey the Word of God. 

Martha needed to change her priorities or at least had to admit that Mary’s choice was a better part to Mary’s faith status and her life. In today’s text, Jesus’ commendation and his approval of Mary who did “the one thing needful” are heard. On the other hand, Jesus called Martha’s name twice and said, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed.” Jesus did not point out that Martha’s service was wrong, because faithful dedication and hospitality are also significant. While Jesus is still honouring the choice she makes, He calls Martha to come closer to His word and reign.

Love for God is shown by devotion to his Word in the midst of life’s demands. Christ changes all priorities, cutting through our distracting customs. May we focus our life on God’s Word in any circumstance rather than social obligations. 

Jesus referred to Himself as “one who serves”, and Martha’s services were themselves manifestations of discipleship. In this instance, her problem lied in forgetting the fact that Jesus is Lord and guest, and her hospitality was distracted.

When anxiety in well-doing becomes the measure of our hospitality, then the church might forget Jesus who needs to be centre in our all gatherings. When Christ is proclaimed as instrumental or decoration to the church’s worships and events, then the community might cease to attend to the Word that first called it into being. Focusing on Jesus and listening to the word of God need to be priority in our precious services and all events.

Martha represents the ministry of diakonia, and Mary represents the ministry of the word. Faithful listening from Mary and faithful dedication from Martha help us understand the development of the ministry of diakonia and the ministry of the word. The ministry of service and the ministry of the word require each other.

In our busy lives, we can perhaps easily relate to Martha, who seems to be working hard while her sister Mary is “just sitting” and listening to Jesus. Many people will be coming to worship with a sense of being overwhelmed by busy situations. However, it will be important in worship to find ways to move through all circumstances, to stop sometimes, take a deep breath, and celebrate the presence of Jesus who seeks to enter our hearts and our lives each day. It is not about problem solving, it is about listening and dedication. May we focus on the presence of God rather than earthly busyness and glorify God by listening, praising, praying, and faithful dedication.

Colossians 1 puts Christ at the centre of everything. The universe came into being because of the action of God in Christ. The universe is being reconciled to God through Christ. When Paul says he is filling up what is still lacking regarding Christ’s afflictions, he is not saying that Jesus’ suffering on the cross was insufficient. Paul had encountered suffering. Yet Paul was able to rejoice in what he suffered. He was enduring suffering on behalf of Christ. The world hated Jesus Christ; and now they persecute His followers. Paul was willing to suffer on behalf of the church because he saw himself as the church’s servant. God gave him a commission to proclaim the gospel, and suffering was included with the commission.

In the dark and confused world, knowing the truth about the power of the gospel and the person of Christ is the believer’s best protection against deception. Jesus Christ lives in all who trust him. Not only does Jesus live in us; he is our hope of glory. Christ is the centre of everything, and ministry is the hard work of bringing all believers to maturity in Christ. Paul’s aim in enduring the suffering and hard work is to present everyone mature in Christ. May we hear and respond to the word of God and become mature in Christ. 

I believe that all your hard work and services are motivated and enabled by God’s energy, which so powerfully works in us, our church, and all faith communities. The goal of spiritual experience is not to chase the spiritual trends, it is spiritual maturity.

The Lord calls us to focus on Him when we gather on Sunday, to move from our place of being worried and distracted by many things to one where we listen to and obey God’s word, the good part that will not be taken away. There we will connect with the source that brings both peace and energy to all our ministries and services.

Healing and recovery come from unexpected places, and hospitality is reciprocal in this wounded world. May we experience God’s healing and recovery in this broken and wounded world by faithful listening to Jesus and mutual hospitality. God’s living word and mutual services provide us with transformative power. May we experience mutual respect and recognition in the love of God.

Thanks be to God! Amen.
(Ref. Bible, commentaries, theological books, UCA materials) 

Order of Service and Notices 17-07-2022

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Worship at LEIGHMOOR UCA Sunday 17th July 2022 – 9.30 a.m. PENTECOST 6

WELCOME TO WORSHIP

PLEASE STAND FOR ENTRY OF THE BIBLE

SERVICE OF APPROACH

CALL TO WORSHIP
WELCOME
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY

PRAYER

TIS 693                           Come as You Are       

    

SERVICE OF THE WORD

READINGS        Colossians 1:24-29 & Luke 10:38–42   

TIS 409                               O Breath of Life      

  

CHILDREN TIME 

SERMON:       Faithful Listening and Dedication        

               [Sermon on Web / Hardcopies at the Door after worship]           

TIS 123                               Be Still My Soul   

SERVICE OF RESPONSE

JOYS AND CONCERNS
PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION 

NOTICES – OFFERTORY 

TIS 59                 All People that on Earth Do Dwell   

BENEDICTION          God Be with You (v. 4)  

NOTICES:

Prayer Topics 

          1. Leighmoor Uniting Church & Church Members

          2. Protection for Families and Friends 

          3. Healing for The Sick & People Who Are in Need 

          4. Peace, Unity, and Justice in Nations

          5. Protection from Violence, Racism, and Abuse

Condolences: The Death of Doug Birchall & Pat Birchall

Erica’s grandfather and grandmother, 10 days apart

Combined Memorial in early August at Glenroy UC

Sunday School @Fellowship Hall

Morning Tea @Fellowship Hall 

Congregational Lunch @Cheltenham RSL

Sunday, 24th July 12pm 

289 Centre Dandenong Road, Cheltenham

Friday Fellowship @Middle Room 

Friday, 5th August 10am 

Presbytery’s Worship Leader Training 

Saturday, 6th August 10am-3pm 

@Glen Waverley UC 

                     CHURCH CONTACTS

Minister: Rev Heeyoung Lim 

M: 0432 054 369 E: hyfilm12@gmail.com 

Website: www.leighmoorunitingchurch.org 

Go and Do the Same 10-07-2022

10th July 2022 (Pentecost 5)
Sermon Title: Go and Do the Same
(Colossians 1:1–14 & Luke 10:25–37)

                                                                                  By Heeyoung Lim 

God’s grace and peace in a person’s life come from knowing the power of the gospel. Paul calls Colossian believers holy, refers to them as faithful, and commends them for their steadfast commitment to the gospel. He says the Colossians are brothers. They are one spiritual family despite differences in background, race, or any other human considerations.

Just like a rich cluster of grapes is evidence of life in the seeds from which they sprang, so the seed of the gospel bears fruit that proves there is spiritual life. Paul lists these virtues in verses 4-5. He points out three traits of Christian character that need to be evident in the life of those in whom the gospel seed has taken root: faith, love, and hope. It can be described as a cluster of virtues, and the virtues should be increasingly evident in our lives if the seed is growing.

Faith in Jesus Christ produces inclusive love for others. In those times, the false teachers were telling the Colossians that the fruit or evidence of spirituality was keeping rules or having mysterious experiences. However, Paul says that the real fruit of faith is love. The love in Christ is inclusive and nonselective. The love of Christ invites us to love the undeserving the same way God has loved us. Love is not a feeling; it is an attitude and an action. The term love is not just a noun, but also a verb. Love is sincerely wishing for another person’s best outcome and taking whatever action is necessary to see that it is accomplished.

The next fruit Paul mentions is hope. Hope is looking forward with eager anticipation and strong confidence to God’s promises. Paul also says that our hope is secure because it is stored up in heaven. Our hope is safe and secure in Christ. This confident expectation is what motivates us to be able to love inclusively. Paul tells us that faith and love spring from hope.

Paul then reminds us of the source of fruit in the lives of believers. The source is the word of truth, the gospel. The message of the gospel is truth. The gospel bears fruit not only in the lives of individual believers but all over the world. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a dynamic force that shatters the hard soil of sin and takes root as new life. By complimenting the Colossians on how the gospel had taken root and grown in them, as it has in all the world (v. 6), Paul encouraged them to remain faithful to the message of truth they heard and not be seduced by the lies of the false teachers. The gospel message bears fruit in believers and grows all over the world. 

Paul’s letter to the Colossians began with a prayer of thanksgiving. Prayers are needed to all believers who are doing well. God is pleased when believers grow in knowledge and character and when they express gratitude for their salvation. He is pleased when believers are growing in the knowledge of God. Believers can please God with endurance and patience as they are strengthened with all power according to his glorious might. Christians please God when they are joyfully giving thanks to the Father for the blessings of salvation. Pleasing God is possible only when His will is the controlling influence in our lives. We also share the Gospel of Luke, hoping to become disciples of the Lord who please God and to be good neighbours to each other.

The gospel of Luke 10 emphasizes and includes people on the edges of the society in which the gospel was written. The outcasts, the lonely, the sick, women, children, and the least are included in God’s reign as God’s people. The kingdom of God and all the opportunities to please God are open to all who know the love of God and respond to it. In God’s reign, love and compassion are the essence of faithful living and action. 

In this story, Jesus criticizes religious leaders. People might infer that these leaders were putting purity laws and temple practices above the call of the law to love God and neighbour, but the text doesn’t tell us why these individuals did not stop and help. The prophets from the bible were continually calling leaders and those who maintain and abuse power to turn from religious distortions back to the heart of faithfulness such as justice, love, mercy, and compassion.

In today’s text, Jesus gives us the prophetic call through a good Samaritan story. He challenges national stereotypes held by both the Jewish and Samaritan peoples. The Jews centred their faith lives in the temple at Jerusalem and the Samaritans focused theirs at Mount Gerizim. There were deep, historical rifts between these two groups. The Jewish audience of this gospel would have considered the Samaritans to be unclean. Yet in this story, the Samaritan is the one who responds most faithfully. 

Thus, the Samaritan saw the man, felt sorry for him, went over to him, and took the dying man.  He treated his wounds with olive and wine and bandaged them. He put him on his own donkey and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. Furthermore, he gave the inner keeper money and asked him to care for the suffering man. The Samaritan was a true neighbour who was showing love.

In Luke 10, Jesus answers a question “Who is my neighbour?”, with a story about a man wounded and lying by the side of the road. We do not usually think of our neighbour as someone who is in one chance meeting. Each one of us is called to be faithful to the call of God to treat every human being with love and justice.  

Today’s text can offer moments of reflection for us to ponder how we represent Christ to others. The Good Samaritan is a story of passing by or choosing to stop and help. It’s an example of how God presents each of us with opportunities to strive for relationships that will enable everyone in the community to flourish. How are we being called to action through this story today? We find faithful action from the Samaritan on the side of the road. Jesus promised God’s mercy to those who show mercy and told the lawyer to go and show mercy like the Samaritan had done. Jesus tells us, “Go and do the same” through today’s text.

The goal of people who dedicate themselves to Jesus is the gaining of eternal life that is reached as we fulfill God’s commands to love God and to love our neighbour. Eternal life is related to our faith, but our faith can be testified through loving God and neighbour. However, it is not the end. Increasing spiritual maturity ought to be the aim of every believer. May we fulfill the commands to love God and to love our neighbour.

Jesus calls us to shape our lives according to God’s justice and mercy, striving for relationships that enable caring community. As compassionate disciples, we love God with all our hearts and our neighbours as ourselves. We are called to live into the reign of God, where every human being is treated with love and justice. 

What acts of justice and kindness have accompanied our faith journey? In what ways do we strive for relationships that enable everyone in the community to flourish and shine? Our goal is to live a life worthy of the Lord. May we please God in every way and bear fruit in every good work.

Thanks be to God! Amen.
(Ref. Bible, commentaries, theological books, UCA materials) 

Order of Service and Notices 10-07-2022

pastedGraphic.pngPLEASE STAND FOR ENTRY OF THE BIBLE 

SERVICE OF APPROACH

CALL TO WORSHIP

WELCOME

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY

PRAYER

TIS 154                    Great Is Your Faithfulness     

    

SERVICE OF THE WORD

READINGS        Colossians 1:1-14 & Luke 10:25–37   

TIS 655                 O Let the Son of God Enfold You     

  

CHILDREN TIME 

SERMON:              Go and Do the Same       

               [Sermon on Web / Hardcopies at the Door after worship]           

TIS 699                           A New Commandment    

SERVICE OF RESPONSE

JOYS AND CONCERNS
PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION 

NOTICES – OFFERTORY 

TIS 28                    God Is Our Strength and Refuge  

 

BENEDICTION          God Be with You (v. 3)  

NOTICES:

Prayer Topics 

          1. Leighmoor Uniting Church & Church Members

          2. Protection for Families and Friends 

          3. Healing for The Sick & People Who Are in Need 

          4. Peace, Unity, and Justice in Nations 

          5. Protection from Violence, Racism, and Abuse

          6. Prayers around COVID & Across Australia

          7. Care and recovery of each part of God’s creation

          8. Spiritual Blessings in Christ & Faith Growth 

          9. People of Ukraine and Russia & Sri Lanka

        10. Unity and Harmony in the church and communities

Sunday School Term Break

Morning Tea @Fellowship Hall 

Congregational Lunch @Cheltenham RSL

Sunday, 24th July 12PM 

289 Centre Dandenong Road, Cheltenham

Friday Fellowship @Middle Room 

Friday, 5th August 10AM

                     CHURCH CONTACTS

Minister: Rev Heeyoung Lim 

M: 0432 054 369 E: hyfilm12@gmail.com 

Website: www.leighmoorunitingchurch.org