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St. David’s Church,  Broom Leys

“Out of the believer’s heart shall flow streams of living water”

‘Growing in Christ, living in faith’

VICAR: Rev’d. Brett Murphy

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Hall Bookings 01530 451776

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Messages from the Minister



SEPTEMBER 26th 2021

Dear sisters and brothers in Christ,

Years ago I was on my way to a very special event, the yearly Royal Melbourne Show, where

the country comes to the city to show off the very best of agricultural and farming life. To get

to the Show most Melbournians take a special train that stops at a station at the

showgrounds, open only for the duration of the festivities. It’s usually a fairly ordinary train

ride. One particular year though my family and I ended up going to the show on a swelteringly

hot day, the train’s air-conditioner units had malfunctioned. Folks were packed into the

carriage like sardines in a tin, our combined body temperatures only adding to the discomfort

of the sunny 350C day!

Tempted to moan or complain, I distinctly remember that even though it was extremely

uncomfortable, almost everyone on-board looked quite happy! Conversations that I could

overhear tid-bits of were focused on the fairground fun ahead of us. I remember one mother,

comforting her little girl who was getting understandably restless that if she kept her

thoughts on the wonderful event ahead, the unpleasant train ride would be over before she

knew it. Sure enough, it seemed to pass pretty quickly as we busied ourselves reading the

show bag catalogues in the newspaper, eagerly awaiting our reward at the end of the line.

I suppose the final destination and the company we keep along the way makes a world of

difference for how we handle the journey. I reckon the same could be said of being a

Christian. It’s not that life is really any easier as disciples, actually Jesus promises us strife as

well as blessings, (John 16:33). Life, with all its ups and downs isn’t always easy, even within the

church family we can face rocky patches! Just like during the melting hot train ride it can be

tempting (and self-indulgent) to begin grumbling and complaining but that only has negative

effects for us and those around us. God gives us a number of promises and tools to use in

order to get through even the toughest patches in life, while being full of peace and joy.

As Christians we are called to be different to the world, because when we have a saving

relationship with Jesus we are saved out of the world and promised a wonderful eternal

future (John 15:19). No matter what we go through in life, if we fix our eyes upon Jesus (Hebrews

12:2) and the eternally bright future He promises that is in store for us (John 14:2) life feels a

lot more bearable. Lifting our eyes up above our trials, pain and hardship to keep our hope

firmly in our Heavenly home is a huge source of strength.

That said, we are broken creatures, even though we are redeemed by the blood of Jesus, we

remain trapped in fallen bodies in a broken world (Romans 7:24). That means, even as born

again Christians, despite our best efforts and the indwelling Holy Spirit, we will still

occasionally stumble into sin, we will let God down, hurt ourselves and harm others. The

reaction of many unbelievers to being hurt, or disappointed or upset is still ‘an eye for an

eye’ but we Christians are called to ‘turn the other cheek’ (Matthew 5:38-39) seeking to train

ourselves to forgive quickly, let go of being offended readily and pray regularly.

One of the ways the church is called to be a witness to the world, is through our morality.

How we treat each other as Christians and how we engage with the unbelieving world around

us is massively influential for the cause of Christ. This is a costly way to live, because it means

constantly putting our fellow Christians and the unity of the body of Christ ahead of our own

desires. Although costly to each individual, such Christian living builds the church, shows the

world how we are different and also makes the ‘train ride’ through life a whole lot more

comfortable as we await the glorious destination of Heaven. The basic principle of Christian

living is to treat others the way we want to be treated (Matthew 7:21) but it goes way deeper

than that and we Christians have a specific responsibility to love, respect and care for our

fellow Christians in a godly way.

It’s so easy to slip into self-indulgent gossip, to fire off a grumpy email, to talk behind others

backs or to let unkind words slip from our lips. Often it even feels good to sin in this way,

sometimes we do it before we even realized we’re sinning! But it only ever hurts others and

causes divisions. There are occasions where we may even have serious issues with other

believers, but even then we are called to take specific care not to harm them, to speak to

them individually and kindly with our concerns first and to be highly cautious about how we

approach bringing others into the issue if we are unable to resolve it one on one.

(Matthew 18:15-17)

If we’re genuinely serious about following Jesus, then we need to heed his admonishment

from our Gospel lesson for this Sunday “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who

believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them if a large millstone were hung around

their neck and they were thrown into the sea.” (Mark 9:42). It echoes Jesus’ similar words in

Matthew 25:40 "whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for


Bless another Christian, then you’re blessing Jesus, harm another Christian, then in effect you

harm the Lord. I don’t know about you, but that puts discipleship into a whole different

perspective for me! Also in our Sunday Gospel lesson, the Lord warns us metaphorically to

remove anything from our lives that causes us to sin and, He refers to godly living and treating

our fellow Christians well as being ‘salty’! (Mark 9:44-50). Salty because in ancient Israel, salt

was used to preserve good food and keep out corrupting germs….so if we are salty disciples,

then our good deeds, forgiveness, kindness and self-sacrificial love preserve the good in our

church. Furthermore, if we’re salty in our relationships with our fellow Christians, then we

prevent the destructive influence of sin from creeping into our shared life together.

So as we travel together as a church family on our journey towards heaven, through all the

ups and downs of this world let us live in unity, peace, love and forgiveness. As individual

Christians and as a family of believers let’s strive to stay salty for Jesus!

God bless you and keep you,

Rev’d Brett