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Sunday 15 February 2015

» Posted on 13 Feb 2015 • Sunday Preview

​Sunday's subject...Everything is spiritual

We are beginning a journey into defining and understanding what it means when we talk about spiritual matters asking questions like, 'what is spirituality?', and then 'what do we mean by Christian spirituality?' This is an important journey. It's ultimately our theory of everything for when we speak of spiritual matters, we speak not simply of religious activities, or an experience of another realm that few are initiated into and few experience. To be spiritual is much more basic than that.

I can't remember who said it, but the comment has been made that Jesus did not come to start a new religion, and they are correct. Jesus instead spoke of coming to bring life in all its fullness (John 10), and to BEING that life (e.g. John 6:35).

For pre-Christians, this presents as the challenge to accept Jesus as THE way, truth and life, instead of making up their own path. For Christians the challenge is to allow God to take up residence in every aspect of life, and let him dig deeper than simply undergoing or undertaking religious activities. Jesus is concerned with the bedrock of life and reality itself.

Fusion Youth:

Meet at Alex and Judi Shepherd's place (384 Horsham Downs Road) on Sunday, from 4pm for a pool party and BBQ. Bring your togs, and a snack or drink to share.

Notices:

  • Women's bible study group, BSF is launching a branch here at Chapel Hill - the only one in the north of Hamilton. They start this Monday from 7pm. If you are a women, would like to develop deeper Bible study habits and get the meat out of the word, then this is your thing. Turn up this week!
  • Family outing - keen to get off the couch, see some of New Zealand's better sights, and join other Chapel Hill homies for a fun day out? Then book in 21 March for the Tongariro Crossing. More details to follow.
  • Community support - Hospital chaplaincy services at Waikato Hospital have asked for our help to raise funds. To keep doing what they do, they need to raise about half of what they need. We are looking for eight people to give an hour each of their time in the morning of 28 March, to sit outside Rototuna Countdown with a bucket, and receive donations from passing shoppers.

Raising Money-wise Children workshop

» Posted on 13 Mar 2014 •

​Details:

  • 2 April
  • 2 Cate Road
  • 2 hours (from 7:30-9pm, plus some time for
  • supper and questions)
  • $10

Be honest now. How many worries in your life are related to money?

Sure, not all. But a few, right?

Have you got a mortgage? Did you know it’s a French word meaning death (mort) grip (gage)? It’s culturally acceptable in New Zealand to be in the death-like grip of debt.

Add on to that other things we think we need, like a new (or as new-as-possible) car, SKY TV, sports equipment, beach house, boat and an overseas holiday while the kitchen is being remodelled, and we wonder  why we might have some money concerns.

If you could, would you turn back the clock and change some decisions if it would make some of those money worries disappear? I would. I’d be stupid not to.

Here’s the trick though: altering one bad decision won’t be enough. Why? Because I made a bad call based on a certain perspective on a money and until I change that perspective, I will repeat the same mistake in new ways.

And here’s another trick – while our past is fixed (sorry, you can’t go back and change it) if you have children, then your present situation does not need to be their future. What a gift it would be to influence how your children think about money so their decision-making in the future will be consistently better and more life-giving than your own.

The next bit I’m happy to say is NOT a trick – we can help you. Or more specifically, finance expert, author and public speaker and CEO of Wisemoney Phil Strong, can help you, and we will have the pleasure of his presence at Chapel Hill for a workshop on helping you raise money-wise children.

For only $10, he will open the door to why you approach money the way you do, and what can be done now to help your children make better choices by seeing the issues more clearly.

In other words, to help your children, he’s going to have to help you. A shame really, but it’s all you can get for $10 these days. Don’t book in, just show up!

Learn more about Phil Strong at wisemoney.co.nz or kidsandmoneybook.com and Like Us on facebook.

D-Day Rototuna

» Posted on 19 Nov 2013 • Sunday Preview

​Sunday 1 December 2013 is D-Day Rototuna for Chapel Hill Community Church.

Instead of strapping on our Sunday best, we're lacing up our walking shoes, because it's Delivery Day - the day we deliver to our neighbours a small Christmas gift.

If you're visiting on this day, sorry. We really enjoy our worship and teaching, but there are days like 1 December when it's good for us to corporately put our words to action. You might even want to join us!

To prepare for delivery we need Gingerbread stars (or shortbread if you prefer), and we're asking for help from the church family. Use any recipe you like, but below is one I whipped up earlier. It works a treat.

Please supply your cookies next week by Friday 7pm. If you're keen, bring your dinner and family to church at 6pm Friday 29 November so we can enjoy dinner together before getting on with packaging up the biscuits into the gift bags. We'll put on a movie for the children to keep them occupied!

Making Gingerbread

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/2 to 2 tablespoons of golden syrup
  • 60g of butter

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 1 egg yolk

  • 1-1/4 cups plain flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1-1/2 ground ginger.

Method:

Pre-heat oven to 180degrees.

Soften golden syrup by standing in hot water. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy; add egg yolk and beat well. Slowly add sifted dry ingredients and warmed syrup. Mix well. At this stage you should have a dough you can knead, but isn’t sticky. (I needed to add golden syrup and a little butter to get mine just right).

Take two sheets of oven paper, and roll the dough between them until about 1/2cm thickness. Take off the top sheet of oven paper, place this on oven tray. Cut stars out of the dough and place these on the oven tray. You will be able to re-roll the scraps of dough and make about 50 7cm stars.

Bake for approx 20mins.

Give your home a tech warrant of Fitness

» Posted on 30 Oct 2013 •

​Are you a parent wondering how to help your children safely and confidently navigate the rapidly changing world of technology?

Technology and online accessibility is developing at a rate matched only by a child’s own curiosity and technical intuition. As a parent, it can feel like things are out of control. You might feel like you have only two options:

  1. Give in and let your children dictate the terms of use for technology in the home, or
  2. Get tough and lock down all smart phones, tablets, computers and other devices unless you’re sitting with them overseeing their activity (which is rare, because who has the time?).

(Maybe you discovered a third option – getting so carried away yourself you played Angry Birds six days straight, only surfacing when you realised the children who have been pestering you for dinner these last few days were your own! If so, this is not the seminar for you. Our ‘Dealing with Addictions’ Seminar is coming soon...)

If neither option one or two feels right, we have some great news: there is a safe middle option!

Mike Fitness, Head of Technology at Hukanui Primary School, is responsible for safely and effectively integrating leading technology into the classroom and he’s ready to help give our homes his technology warrant of Fitness.

On Tuesday, 7:30pm at Chapel Hill Community Church, Mike will share with you all he has learned in using technology to advance the learning of his students.

“Hukanui Primary has an incredibly supportive and progressive management and Board of Trustees who see technology as a valuable asset and have invested in me to help guide the school in using technology well. The more I learn the more excited I get about how the future of schooling,” Mike says.

Mike is also a parent, and wants to help parents confidently navigate the fast-changing world of technology.

“I understand the pressures parents are under to do the right thing, and how hard it is to stay up to speed with technology. This seminar is aimed at giving parents guiding principles to negotiate the tech world with their children, and begin to really get a lot out of it together. The idea is not to minimise technology –that’s like turning back time – but to optimise it; make the most of what is good and leave out the rubbish.”

Perhaps we might ask, ‘What’s at stake? Why bother with this at all?’ For Mike, it’s simply recognising that technology is already such an integrated part of our lives it is shaping our society.

“Employers are already searching online to see what kind of activities prospective employees have got up to. Our online profile is becoming as important as our CV. If we’re wise and teach our children to be wise, we needn’t be scared of that, but it is an example of the importance of helping our children approach technology with due respect.”

Event details:

What: Get a Tech Warrant of Fitness for your home

When: Tuesday 12 November, 7:30pm.

Where: Chapel Hill Community Church, 2 Cate Road.

Mentalist method for mental health

» Posted on 11 Oct 2013 •

​I’m a bit of a fan of the TV show The Mentalist, and particularly the main character Patrick Jane. (If you’ve not seen the show, he’s the current face of ANZ bank.)

As a character, Patrick has Sherlock Holmes-like abilities of observation and deduction. As impressive as that is, still more impressive is his supreme sense of self.

Patrick Jane is his own man. He is comfortable with his quirks, in having has his own thoughts, and even in the face of opposition, mistrust and outright hostility, can keep a steady course.

I find that attractive, probably because I find it so hard. My life is filled with people who don’t just want a piece of me, they want me to become a piece of them. They want me to be like them, agree with them, think like them, act like them, vote like they vote, appreciate the same music, have the same taste in food, like the movies they like. Does that sound familiar? Mostly it’s just what it means to live closely with others. It’s not a bad thing. It’s not that people are malicious about it. Of course the truth is we all do this to others as well. It’s more than slightly offensive when someone thinks we have poor taste in clothes, or that the music we like is stupid.

If, like me, you’re tired of needing everyone else’s approval to be happy, and if you’re tired of needing everyone else to match up to your tastes and expectations, I have a suggestion for us all. Let’s do what Patrick does. Lie on the couch.

One thing I have noticed in the show is, while everyone else is frantic in their police work, he kicks back on the couch and seems to doze off. What’s he doing? Does he not care? Is he lazy? Shouldn’t he be helping?

Most of our frantic activity is fear and anxiety driven. Panic, anxiety and fear are no friends of ours. They are very loud voices with very little to offer. Running around like a headless chicken might satisfy (for a while) the loud voice of fear that screams, “run, fight!” but it achieves nothing but weariness.

In our over-frantic world, we need to learn the secret of strategic withdrawal; the counter-intuitive habit of stopping the activity just when things look their most desperate.

In only a few weeks’ time this will be very important advice. Christmas is coming, and if past experience is anything to go by the pressure to have the perfect experience, buy the perfect presents, satisfy the demands of family who all want you to spend time with them, can be oppressive.

We can’t avoid these pressures; they’re a part of life. But we can navigate them with clarity and poise...if we’re brave enough to make time for ourselves: to clear our head, smell the roses, drink a cup of tea on the porch – whatever it takes to get yourself back!

Peace

Philip

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