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Pastor's note:

There is heaps to be excited about as we kick off week 2 in our Everyday Disciple Series. Already I can see across the church the joy and wonder found in following Jesus. 


  • Last Friday night we officially welcomed the grade 6’s out to youth. This launched term 3 with one of our biggest nights of the year with 35 in attendance. I had a great conversation with a youth around the topic of how we hear from God. 

  • Our Wednesday prayer meeting was filled with expectation as we stood in the kitchen and prayed over the ministry and vision for the fit-out. A place that will support almost every ministry in the church in providing food and coffee for the church and community for many years to come. 

  • We gathered as connect groups on Thursday night to launch the connect series as Marty shared a practical application of listening to God through the process of journaling. 

  • Finally, this weekend Rev Dr Tania Harris is sharing with us at our women’s conference and our Sunday morning service. Sharing around the topic of her book “God Conversations”, we are again expectant for God to continue to speak through His word and his people. 


I can see a clear theme of listening to God flow through every aspect of our church. This is happening on an individual level as we seek to become more like Christ, but also collectively as the body of Christ. I’d encourage you to spend some time in the Everyday Disciple daily devotions. There is something special about being united in God’s word and devotions together that opens the door for God to speak. This week we look at the topic of being “immersed in scripture” and I will be sharing a word at our 5:30 PM service from 2 Timothy 3:16-17. 


“16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”


God’s word equips us for every good work! What an incredible reminder this week as we continue reading His word and become immersed in hearing from our Heavenly Father. As we look towards the future we want to be known as a community that not only hears the voice of God but has the strength to step out in obedience and faith. My prayer this week for us is that we listen to God and continue to do the good work that God calls us to. 





Pastor's note:

At last Sunday’s members meeting, Mel Goopy was voted in as a new pastor at The Grove. Praise the Lord! What a wonderful moment this was in the life of our church. I must admit I got a bit emotional after the meeting, thinking about how good Jesus is and all he has done in the lives of Mel, Chris and their family. It’s also a wonderful answer to prayer as we have been seeking the Lord about future leaders for a long time. While we continue our search for a family’s pastor, finding a leader who is home grown in The Grove is a beautiful story of fruitfulness. I won’t tell anymore of the story, as Mel will share her testimony in the service this Sunday about how God called her to pastoral ministry.  


There is no greater moment for any person than hearing God call them. Lots of people and organisations try to grab our attention and suggest a way for us to go in life, or what to invest our resources in. Yet there is only one who has the credibility and authority to make a call on our lives. The one who fearfully and wonderfully created each of us, who loves us without limit, and who prepared in advance the good work and purpose that will fulfill our lives and change the world around us (Ephesians 2:10). 


On this Commitment Sunday we give thanks to God for his call on The Grove, which is a call on all who have made The Grove their spiritual home and family. We are called together to be a city on a hill in our neighbourhood, and in the new financial year, to increase our capacity to reach more people of all ages in our neighbourhood and the nations.


Jesus’ call on us is like his call on Peter to put his boat out into deep water for a catch (Luke 5). Peter wasn’t convinced about the plan at first, but the catch of fish was immeasurably more than he could have imagined. It was a defining moment in his call to become a fisher of people. This Sunday is our defining moment, to step out in faith and obedience into a place out of our depth. A place where only God can provide, and where only Jesus will get the glory for all he does. A place of tremendous fruitfulness. 


There are seasons where Jesus calls a small group to carry a larger load, but then the season changes and he calls for more people to join. A little like how Peter called for more boats to gather the large catch of fish. Movements of God can suddenly accelerate, and we can see the signs of this through a growing hunger for God in many. So by faith we are seeking to prepare, believing for immeasurably more. 


This year we are stepping out to grow a leadership team that matches the capacity of the building the Lord gave us. We are investing more in the next generation with pastor Henry moving to full time. We are preparing to love our neighbours by calling Mel, who will equip us with the COACH program to bring hope and help to those in need in our neighbourhood. And an exciting step is the fitout of our kitchen, which will be a much needed hub for hospitality, including our Neighbourhood Cafe dream. May God provide through our special offering this Sunday to raise a further $77,000. In our vision and finance booklet, there are many more visions we are committed to as well.  


Our response couldn’t be expressed better than God’s words to Israel through Joshua. 

Joshua told the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things 

among you.” (Joshua 3:5).



Pastor's note:

I was reminded this week of a time the Lord spoke clearly to us through a single verse of his word to King David in 1 Chronicles 17:9. One Sunday we couldn’t meet in our usual venue, the High School auditorium, so had to relocate to Q block, a smaller building. I wrote this in the newsletter that day on 6 June, 2010.

…part of prayer is asking God to speak and guide us through his word (the primary way God speaks). Then when God provides direction, we simply obey what he says…question…”but how do I know its really God who has spoken…?” I find that God will make his word clear by matching it to situations that can only be God, then affirming it through his people. 

An example: the last time we met in Q block was late last year – it was an unexpected move we weren’t prepared for. I remember feeling at the time the difficulty associated with rented premises. That week I was doing my daily devotions and this verse jumped off the page. “I will provide a place for my people Israel and will plant them so that they can have a home of their own and no longer be disturbed”. The timing of that word came as a wonderful encouragement, and as I shared it with others, it was strongly affirmed that God will provide all we need for the vision he gave us.



There’s actually more to the story, because when we arrived to set up in Q block, someone had changed the locks and we couldn’t get in. So we had to scramble and setup church in a sports hall. By some miracle we did it with minutes to spare. But the really cool thing is what was written on the front of the newsletter that day affirmed 1 Chronicles 17:9 as a promise from God for us. 


Praise God for changed locks and an inconvenience that powerfully confirmed God’s word. We look back fourteen years later from the place of fulfillment - the Lord has indeed provided. Year after year, God has led The Grove by lining up his word with our circumstances. In fact, He did it again last week.  


Last Sunday night Kris Foreman, the senior Chaplain at Grace College, filled in to preach at the 5.30pm service. The sermon was from Luke 5:1-11, the same story we shared on vision Sunday about Peter’s call. It’s a big bible, so I am confident Jesus was confirming his call to put out into the deep for a catch. That we can be expectant of an immeasurably more outpouring of God’s Spirit, resulting is many coming into God’s family at The Grove. Peter needed to call for another boat for all the fish…and so do we. 


This fills me with faith at the beginning of the new financial year, and an important week in The Grove. God is calling us to make ourselves available like those boats, for immeasurably more. We do this at our members meeting as we vote on the calling of a pastor. At our TV night as we align our teams with our vision. And on commitment Sunday when we express our calling together by bringing commitments to the budget and gifts for the kitchen fit-out to Jesus as an act of faith in his word to us. 


Grove family, let’s step out in faith together, confident Jesus is leading us by his word. 


Pastor's note:

On Vision Sunday we launched our Immeasurably More vision, about the great things God has called us to focus on in the new financial year. On that same day Pastor Henry lost his dear dad, Aron, after a sudden health complication. Sometimes a season of life can feel like a mountain top, other times like a valley floor, but the more common experience is how good and hard seasons seem to happen at the same time. 


In a way, this paradox of real life confirms our calling as a church. It was a privilege to host Aron’s Thanksgiving service on Wednesday, where volunteers from The Grove served the family and friends of the Leong’s with such beautiful love in so many different ways - through worship, tech, ushering, car parking and hospitality. In many conversations, I heard similar comments of how loved and comforted people felt by those who volunteered. 


It became so clear to me last Wednesday, how central to our calling it is to use our gifts, and the building God gave us, to serve people with the love of Christ through all seasons of life. To do this on normal days, sacred days, through celebrations and lamentations - to love our neighbour as ourselves.    


Paul expressed it so well in his letter to the church in Rome, in Romans 12:10-16. 


'Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud.


So many practical expressions of love flow out of those verses. Our call to love is through real actions to serve the people and families of our church and neighbourhood. Jesus gave us such a wonderful spiritual home as a place to serve from, which is why hospitality is such a key part of our vision this year. Something special takes place; whether on the deck or in the foyer, where people love to linger in the peaceful and loving presence of God. 


In two weeks time is commitment Sunday. It's a day to offer our lives afresh to serve Jesus for another year. We are commissiong pastors, and asking for the Holy Spirit to fill us all with his life and love for immeasurably more. It’s also a day to bring financial  commitments towards the new budget, and we are taking up a special offering towards our Kitchen fitout goal of $77,000. A fully functional kitchen will make a huge difference to our hospitality ministry in sharing the practical love of Jesus with many. 


Leanne and I look forward to all God has in store for The Grove, as we 

love our neighbours together with you all. Marty.


Pastors Note

As we come together for Vision Sunday Ps Marty and the church council have been hard at work distilling all that God has been saying over the past twelve months and where he is leading us as a church in the future. As a small update from the Youth and Young Adults side of things, I wanted to share an encouragement, and a challenge for us as we move into this next season.


I am currently in the process of doing some backyard renovations. Small things like turf, a new bench seat and a fireplace, are all things to help us host more people in our home. Whilst we are in the middle of these renovations I can’t help but feel excited and passionate about what it will look like when Jordan and I are finished. The same can be said about the past 12 months here at The Grove. I have been so thankful for all God has done in the Youth and Young Adults. Seeing three baptisms (Armand Nel, Zoe Hanlon, and Stephen Day) and another this weekend in Riley Mansfield, I believe God is going to continue to move in the next generation. 


This year we have seen so many people step up and grow in their faith and leadership in the church. Our youth team has grown to 10 leaders and around 30 youth on a Friday night and our PM service continues to be a place for all to come and experience the love and hope that Jesus offers. As I look around at our community and see all that God is doing I can’t help but feel thankful. I also know that God has so much more ahead of us and I am filled with excitement and passion about what God will continue to do. I stand here expectant that God is going to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine in our church.


I was reading on Thursday morning in Mark 2:13-17 (Entitled: Jesus calls Levi and Eats With Sinners) and I was reminded that we are called to be a place where all feel welcome. Jesus wasn’t just on earth for the religious but was intentional at making those labeled sinners and tax collectors feel loved and welcomed like children of God. I believe God is calling us to be a place for all to feel welcome, for us to continue welcoming others into our home here at The Grove. Whilst God has done amazing things I am convinced that God is not done yet. He wants to see all those in our community come and eat at the table with Jesus, to experience love, hope 

and peace. For our church to welcome anyone and everyone, no 

matter their background or history.