I've never been in a season where so many people are willing, enthusiastic even, to have a chat about God/Jesus/faith. It seems that every week, and sometimes every day, I'm talking to someone from outside our church about spiritual topics. While they may interested in all manner of spiritual topics, one thing they are rarely interested in is, "church".

Today, I met a local fella who hasn't been to church for about 10 years after witnessing some unethical behaviour in one local church, and then a suspicious lack of transparency in the next. Others, like myself and many others at Open Road, haven't left church but have experienced some disillusionment with what church is and is not.

As you will know, one of our three rhythms is gathering to encourage each other. In my mind, I believe it's clear that followers of Jesus need to gather each week! However, this can inadvertently communicate that our attendance, volunteering and giving at a local church is the focus of the Christian life. In time, some people rise to this expectation of a Sunday-centric, high-activity expression of faith, while others simply do not.

The uncomfortable truth is that this isn't the primary expression of faith outlined in the life and teachings of Jesus. The first Christians certainly gathered and used their time and spiritual gifts to encourage and "build up" each other, but the primary expression of faith was not attendance but an intimate, bold and all-encompassing pursuit of Jesus and his purpose for their lives.

Thanks to Ben and Katie for this reminder to Martine and I that we are "All in for Jesus".

In my personal opinion, this confronting expectation Jesus had for his followers leads us to create alternate expectations within church organisations that make attendees feel religious without requiring us to humbly and sacrificially submit our lives to Jesus as he intended us. Despite the best intentions of all involved, church involvement may even become a distraction from following Jesus personally.

When few, if any, of us meet these expectations, one of the greatest disappointments is that the outcome or fruit of a religious, church-centred life is far poorer than a sacrificial, Christ-centred life.

I recently came across this video in which Neil Cole encourages Christians and churches to:

"Lower the bar of how we do church, raise the bar in what it means to be a disciple."

I want to encourage you - especially if you've been disillusioned, let down or mistreated by Christians or churches - the life, power, purpose and fruit we are all looking for can be found in the person of Jesus. It's in the simple, but significant life Jesus calls us to that we discover all the fruit he promises to those who follow him. It's in the sacrifice of following Jesus that we sense God's presence most tangibly.

As a church, and as a pastor, I've pinned my hat on our three simple rhythms of following Jesus. However, there's no formula, strategy or model that can demand spiritual fruit in our lives. It comes from Jesus himself, no matter the steps we take to seek him!

It seems to me that God has gifted us with such a simple expression of church to ensure we can minimise the distractions from Jesus himself. In a way, he's lowered the bar on church so he can raise the bar on following Jesus.

Join me this Sunday as we share stories and take time to reflect on Jesus' words, "Come, follow me."



Sun 24 Mar 4pm Moffat Gathering
Fri 29 Mar NO Good Friday Service
Sun 31 Mar Easter Sun - 6am Shelly Beach Dawn Service


Sun 07 Apr 4pm Moffat Gathering
Sun 14 Apr 4pm Worship Gathering: 209 Burgum Rd, North Maleny
Sun 21 Apr 4pm Moffat Gathering
Sun 28 Apr 4pm Moffat Gathering - Baptisms anyone?


Sun 05 May 4pm Moffat Gathering (no worship event due to long weekend)
Sun 12 May 4pm Moffat Gathering
Sun 19 May 4pm Moffat Gathering - get baptised!
Sun 26 May 4pm Moffat Gathering

Our Mission

To help people find and follow Jesus.

Our Rhythms

Get to Know Jesus: how are you getting to know Jesus this week?
Invite people into your life: who can you intentionally open up your life to?
Gather and get involved: who can you connect, listen, share or pray with this weekend?

Our Giving

We are slowly being led to needs for our giving kitty! Please take time to ask God if there is someone in need around you whom God wants you/us to help!

Last month's giving: $10,238
Last month's expenses: $6,787
Balance: $36,676
Giving Kitty Oct-Feb: $5,000
Giving out Oct-Feb: $1,190

"Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed." - Proverbs 19:17

If you would like to support what we are doing and our giving to those in need, you can get started with giving to Open Road to meet needs as a church or get in touch with any questions you may have.

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