Little book of LOVE

GOD: Father, Son and Holy Spirit
Who is Jesus?
The Greatest Commandment
What is LOVE?
God is LOVE
Tough LOVE
Relationships with our father
Needs and wants
Judging others
The Good Samaritan
False Idols
What is SIN?
Our special gifts
Home groups
Our journey in life

I am writing this from my own experience in life. I do not expect you to agree with what I have written. We all come from different places and I certainly don’t presume to have all the answers, however, I feel that it needs to be said. Each of us has had different experiences and we build up a different view of the world as only we know it. It is natural to challenge any thinking that may be different to what we are accustomed to. We are creatures of habit and anything outside our normal frame of reference is often seen as an attack on our beliefs and values. I am as guilty as anyone else in this respect. I know that others may not share my thoughts and may disagree with me. I certainly do not have all the answers. I can only see things as I see them and I hope you might have an insight into who I am.

What I am certain of is that we all have dreams. We all have needs and wants that need to be fulfilled.

My physical father lived in a country town and sent me to live in Perth with my mothers sister. I spent my school years in an Anglican school and I remember the Chaplin saying to me “Son, what ever you do, do it with a genuine LOVE for others. And no matter what happens to you in life, the only person that can judge you is your father in heaven”. Since then, I have come to know that our father does not judge us. It is we that judge ourselves.

I remember when I was young I had all sorts of questions that I could not answer. Who am I? Why am I here? What I my purpose? I had no idea. I looked into my soul and really did not get any reasonable answers. I had read the bible and thought Jesus was a real cool dude and tried to live my life as he lived his. I did feel a peace in my soul and treated others as I would like to be treated. I respected others no matter what they thought of themselves. When things got too much I would escape to the country where I really felt God’s presence. I cycled around Australia and travelled to different countries experiencing different cultures and ideas. I always wanted to find out what was over the next hill or around the next bend. When I got there, there was always another hill or bend. This was all very good. But there was still something missing in my life.

There have been two books that I feel have shaped my life; The BIBLE and “Looking Forward Through the Lifespan” By Candida Peterson. There have been other books and ideas almost as important. The writings of the great philosophers, science fiction authors and others have all been full of imagination and thought. I remember exploring the inner workings of the human body and the outer planets and solar systems when I was growing up. My whole world was a voyage of discovery of the physical world in which we live. Man first went to the moon, computers were just being invented, colour TV and all the technology was just starting. New things were happening wherever I looked. Amongst all these new adventures was the BIBLE, it stood the test of time. It was the one constant in this ever changing world. It showed me how to treat others. It showed me what was right and wrong. It was my companion.

This was all very good. But there was still something missing in my life. I was searching for something, but I had no idea what it was.

It was only when my physical father died I found the answer. My father was a good Christian man and had a lot of LOVE in him but he could not show it in a physical way. I knew he LOVED me and I took it for granted as my birth right. I was with him when he died and felt him being released to the Holy Spirit. There was no emptiness there, just a peacefulness that came from GOD. I knew where GOD was and this knowledge filled my heart. I also knew my mission in life was to LOVE others as I am LOVED. GOD had given me a compassion for others less fortunate than me, others that had been rejected by their families and society in general. I started my new life in aged care looking after people at the end of their physical lives.

The next 20 or so years have been a journey of discovery. There have been good and bad times, but overall the experience has confirmed the knowledge that without LOVE in our lives we have nothing. All human relationships are about caring and sharing, about forgiveness and forgiving, about accepting each other for who we are, about loving each other as we are LOVED. All pain and suffering comes from a lack of this basic need inside all of us.

When my physical mother died the last day of 2009 I was caught up in all the physical responsibilities of the estate. It was about a year and a half later that I felt the emotional loss of my mother. Not being at her side when she passed away I carried her with me for the next 12 months. I felt devastated, alone and lost. Not having a family of my own I became withdrawn and could not leave the house. Coming from an Anglican background I was drawn to the Anglican Church. I met some people full of LOVE and acceptance. This allowed the healing process to begin. I felt the need to contact my brothers and sister and tell them how much I LOVED them and how important they were to me. I spent time with others I LOVED and I felt the LOVE growing inside me. I was encouraged to return to a church that I was a part of 20 years before, and, after a lot resistance on my part, I joined the church and got involved. I became a part of the community ministry and immediately felt that I had come home, and that this was where I was meant to be.

It was only when I let my mother go to our father that I felt closure and was able to move on to another stage on my journey here on earth. Looking back on my life I can see where GOD was and how he was preparing me for my next stage.

My involvement with the community ministry at the church I am a part of has given me a sense of direction and purpose. While there have been times where I felt alone and feeling discouraged I stepped out in faith and was rewarded with more than I expected.

GOD: Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Top)

For me the cross symbolises the vertical (our relationship with GOD) and the horizontal (our relationships with each other) Just as you can’t have up without down or left without right, the light without the darkness or even good without bad, the vertical and horizontal exist in perfect harmony with each other. To live fulfilled lives we need to have our physical relationships with each other as well as our spiritual relationship with our father. Without one or the other our lives can become disconnected and meaningless. Whatever happens in our lives there will be both good and bad. It is how we deal with those that make the difference. Jesus the son of GOD shows us how to deal with the good and the bad things in our lives.

Everything comes from GOD. When we are born into this world we are first conceived through the miracle of conception. We are a part of the spiritual world. Our brain has all the connections already connected. Over the next nine months in the womb, as we try to make sense of our physical world, some connections are reinforced. We develop physical and emotional connections to our mother who nurtures and feeds us. Our brain tries to make sense of all the new sounds and feelings that happen within the womb.

When we are born into the physical world we experience all sorts of new sounds and feelings. We are dependent on our physical mother and father for all our physical needs and learn how to deal with those new sounds and feelings. Over a period of time our relationship with our physical mother and father becomes more important that our spiritual relationship with our father. We loose those connections with our spiritual father and the physical world becomes more important.


From the above it can be seen that Jesus is not the Father, but son of the Father. God is where everything comes from. Our Father is who we love and serve and look for guidance. GOD sent his SON (Jesus) to earth as his messenger and The Holy Spirit lives in us all. God is always there regardless of whether we know it or not. We may not acknowledge or accept him, but he is still there. We often get so bound up in the physical world that we do not see him in our lives.

Who is Jesus? (Top)
There have been a lot of different theories about a nature, power or force that is greater than ourselves; GOD. The message of Jesus was fairly simple. There are three central themes of LOVE, Judgement and Forgiveness. As far as I am aware Jesus was the only person that spoke about these matters. All human relationships contain the elements that Jesus spoke about. This is not to say that others didn’t, however, Jesus showed us that we are human and therefore not perfect. He also showed us that it is OK to be human and that we make mistakes along the way. Whatever we do there will be good and bad times, trials and tribulations. Things never go the way we always want them to go. Jesus has shown us that only by trust and faith in our father can we live fulfilled lives.

Jesus constantly reminds us in the Bible that he is not the father, but his SON here on earth. Jesus never did anything himself; it was his relationship with his father that made everything possible. It is only by faith in our father, through his SON (Jesus) that eternal life is possible. Just as our physical father may give us authority to act in his name (as attorney or representative) God gave his son Jesus authority to act in his name here on earth. God also gives us authority through Jesus to act in his name. After all, aren’t we all his children also?

The Greatest Commandment (Top)
(The Greatest Commandment.html)

The Greatest Commandment has three parts:
1) Love God
2) Love thyself
3) Love others

To LOVE GOD is to LOVE life itself, because we are of GOD. To LOVE the Lord is to LOVE what he has given us. To have a joy in life is to appericiate what we have been given. God gave us the heavens and the stars to be amazed by his glory. His signs and wonders are everywhere to be seen, if we stop to have a look. There are a lot of people in the world that are bitter and twisted. How often do we take for granted what GOD has already given us? How often do things for our own glory instead of our fathers glory?

To LOVE our neighbour as ourself is to LOVE, honour and respect each other as we LOVE, honour and respect ourselves. To do unto others as we would have them do unto us. This is not vanity or pride, but a LOVE and peace in our heart and a good will to ourselves and others.

Matthew 22 36-40 tells us that it is not enough just to LOVE our father. It is only by LOVING others as we LOVE ourselves, with a genuine LOVE that comes from our father, that we can live fulfilled lives. How can we LOVE others if we can not LOVE ourselves? We get angry and upset with others. We become bitter and unforgiving. Sometimes all it needs is to say "Im sorry about that. Ive had a bad day. Please forgive me.".

What is LOVE? (Top)
There has been a lot written about LOVE. But what is it?
LOVE is a strong desire to please or be accepted by another. We refer to different types of LOVE. While each type is used in a different context, the concept of love is the same. A lot of people confuse other feelings as LOVE. Desire, greed, envy, craving, obsession, gluttony, control over others, dependency on another are all feelings and behaviours that we attach the label of LOVE. The need to LOVE and be LOVED is written in our DNA. Our father gave this to us as our inheritance to give freely to others.

There has been a lot written about LOVE. But what is it?
As far as I know there is only one definition of love in the bible.

Love has 8 parts,
Patient: not jumping to conclusions or making rash decisions,
Modest: unassuming, humble,
Giving: not jealous or envious,
Forgiving: non demanding or irritable, not holding past transgressions against others,
None judging: accepting others for who they are,
Truthfulness: Honest to ourselves and others,
Enduring: Faithfull, hopeful, never ending.

How can we be patient with others if we are not patient with ourselves?
How can we be kind to others if we are not kind to ourselves?
How can we be humble to others if we are not humble to ourselves?
How can we be giving to others if we are not giving to ourselves?
How can we be forgive others if we are not forgive ourselves?
How can we none judging to others if we are not none judging to ourselves?
How can we be true to others if we are not true to ourselves?
How can we be faithfull to others if we are not faithfull to ourselves?

A lot of people confuse other feelings as LOVE. Pride, desire, greed, envy, craving, obsession, gluttony, control over others, dependency on another, and even sex are all feelings and behaviours that we attach the label of LOVE to. Our sinful nature often gets in our way. Impatience, envey, pride, unforgiveness, dishonesty and giving up are all feelings and emotions that may control our lives. How often do we put conditions on our love for others? How often do we feel let down because we have not been recognised for what we have given. How often have we felt like a “mushroom”, or left out of something? How often have we been the cause of some hurt or damage because we have felt unloved?

Where is the LOVE in our lives? Where is the hate in our lives? Do we not feel these emotions? Where do these emotions come from? Are we not human if we do not LOVE or hate? Whatever we believe or understand, whatever theories we have about life, however we treat others, or are treated by others, we still have feelings, and needs that need to be met both in the physical and the spiritual world. We laugh, we cry, we are envious and proud, we look to and compare ourselves to others. We search for LOVE in this physical world. We all have this most basic need inside of us. Some look for this LOVE in the physical world but all they find is false promises and emptiness.

We LOVE our spouses. We LOVE our children and parents. We LOVE our pets … etc. LOVE is so much a part of all doctrines and cults that it is taken for granted. But where does this LOVE come from?

Without LOVE there is no hope. There is only lonleness, emptyness and despare. Love gives us hope and a reason for living. LOVE is security. LOVE endures in this everchanging world. LOVE can also be fragile if it is not well grounded. LOVE can be twisted and used against us if we we look for LOVE in the wrong places. LOVE is not found in the physical world.

God is LOVE (Top)
LOVE does not come from outside, but from inside. It is the genuine LOVE for others that comes from GOD the Father, Son and Holy Spirit that makes us whole. GOD does not judge. GOD does not destroy. GOD is patient. GOD accepts us for who we are. GOD LOVES us.

God made us in his own image. God is LOVE and the Holy Spirit lives in us all.

How can we hurt another person if we have a genuine LOVE for them? After all didn’t Jesus remind us that while it is OK to LOVE our brothers we are no better than anyone else? It is only when we have a genuine LOVE our enemies that we really know our fathers LOVE.

Does a husband LOVE his wife? Does a wife LOVE her husband? Does a father/mother LOVE his/her children? Does a child LOVE his/her parents? But how do we show our love to others? Unfortunately there are a lot of people who have not experienced this genuine LOVE that comes from our father. Love to some is being abused physically or mentally. Love to others is being locked away or abandoned, or a complete lack of empathy, respect or interest. We can also give to another any amount of physical bits and pieces, but if we have not given them LOVE we have given them nothing.

Tough LOVE (Top)

A lot of people talk about “Tough Love”. Jesus never mentioned this. On the contrary, Jesus spoke about patience and kindness. He spoke about going the extra mile if they asked for an inch. He talked about turning the other cheek. Jesus did rebuke others out of LOVE. He got very angry when somebody did something out of self righteousness or greed. He certainly reminded us who was in charge.

Tough LOVE has two dimensions. To LOVE our enemies can be very hard sometimes. Jesus asks us to make some tough decisions about how we should be living our lives. Jesus tells us to LOVE our enemies, to give to others without seeking reward. Jesus asks us to die to self and freely give to others. This can be really tough to do sometimes, especially when we have been hurt. To correct another person’s thoughts or behaviours about what is right and wrong can also be tough for a person to do. How do we really know what to do in a situation? Do we admonish and judge the person out of self righteousness of self interest? How often do we jump to a conclusion based on our own experience or some preconceived ideas about the person?

Relationships with our father (Top)

First of all it needs to be said that our father’s LOVE for us is unconditional. He never leaves us. Jesus shows us that without our relationships with our father AND each other (LOVE GOD and LOVE others as we are LOVED) we are nothing.

Our relationships with others reflect our relationship with our father. If we LOVE our father we LOVE others. If we LOVE others we LOVE our father. But how often do we complicate this idea. We change and modify this idea to suit the circumstances or the situation at the time. How often do we run on auto pilot and treat others as we have been treated, or see others as others see them? But how often do we LOVE others as GOD LOVES them? Not very often I suspect.

It is our relationship with our father that changes, not our father’s relationship with us. Our father has made a commitment to us. Our father will always honour that commitment. It is our commitment to our father that is in question. Just as we may not honour our commitment to each other, we may not honour our commitment to our father. This happens when our physical wants become more important than our spiritual needs. Our father knows this and allows us to make our mistakes that we may learn from those mistakes in the knowledge that we really can not do anything without him.

How often do we become so caught up or distracted with the world around us, our work or something that has happened to us. We can not spend time with the people we LOVE. We may make a commitment to another person, and through some event or greater need we find that we can not honour that commitment. What do we do? I can not answer that question. We need to ask our father what to do.

There are four broad types of relationships we have with our father and others.

There are times in our life where we are totally dependent on our father. In times of emotional crisis, turmoil and confusion. When the world no longer behaves as we understand it. We feel powerless and turn to others to fulfil this basic need of LOVE. If we don’t get this LOVE our heart turns hard and bitter. We turn to substitutes in the physical world to fill this void in our life.

A dependent relationship with GOD is not ideal. This can lead to all sorts of emotional problems in being unable to cope in the real world. People can become withdrawn and isolated. GOD never intended us to live alone.

Most of us live our lives at peace with the world. Things happen as we expect them to happen. Small issues are dealt with and there are no major problems with the world as we know it. How often do we take our father for granted? Things go the way we expect. We take the credit for the good things and expect others to acknowledge our success or blame others for our misfortune. We may say to our father “Its ok dad, I can look after myself”. And dad says “That’s ok son I am always there for you, but just remember – What you sow will be what you reap”.

Some refuse to acknowledge the existence of GOD and get caught up with all sorts of other stuff out there. Some people look to science to find answers in the physical world but this only leads to more questions. Some believe that they are in control of their own destiny and they are right. But GOD is still there.

When we are in a new situation that we do not understand or unfamiliar with, we depend on our father to show us the way. Our father relies on us to serve him and we rely on him to show us the way.

How often have we been in a situation where we really don’t know what to do? Do we rely on intuition or feelings? Do we just stop and wait? Do we run on “Auto Pilot”? Do we just hang in there without really knowing what we are doing? Do we look for guidance from others? Do we just bluff our way through? What do we do?

A co-dependent relationship is important in learning from our mistakes. We fall down and our father picks us up. This is no different to learning how to ride a bicycle or drive a car. We have someone with us that is more experienced and can guide us.

Our faith and trust in our father, as well as our own experience allows us to step out boldly in the knowledge that our father is there when we stumble. We bring our own skills and knowledge and our father brings the faith and courage. We both bring something into the relationship.

This relationship allows us to develop the special gift that our father has given us. That special gift may be prophecy, or healing, or music, or art or any other talent.

It is only when we let our father into our life and serve him, that our life becomes fulfilled. To LOVE and serve our father is to LOVE and serve each other.

These four types of relationships are a normal part of any relationship. Some may see them as seasons or stages or anything else. We naturally move from one to another according to a situation, mood, circumstance or event that has happened or is happening in our life at a particular moment. We also draw on our past experiences to cope with what is happening at the moment. It is human nature to try to control a situation, and when we can’t … “All hell breaks loose”.

There is only one thing that is certain, that our physical bodies are only in this physical world for a short amount of time. What ever happens to our spiritual entities is determined by what we believe.

Needs and wants (Top)

Our needs

Our father really does provide for our needs. Even before we understand what we need our father knows. He knows us better than we do, because he LOVES us. He is in us all, underneath all the pain and suffering. After all, didn’t we come from him in the first place? Our father is so much a part of our lives that we seldom know that he is there and take him for granted. How often do we acknowledge ourselves or others rather than our father? How often do we thank our father for what he has given us? How often do we thank our father for the LOVE in our lives? How many times has our father already blessed us and we have not thanked him? How many times have you told others in your life how important they are to you? How many times have you LOVED others as our father LOVES them?

We often confuse greed with need. Do we really want 3 or 4 houses when we can only live in one? Do we really need that extra serving when one is enough?

We often pray to our father for what we want rather than what we need. Our father knows what’s best for us and will often say “NO”. However, if we pester him he will answer our prayer because he LOVES us. But how many times have you felt “Oh, I didn’t expect that”, or “I didn’t want that”? How many times has the prayer caused more grief in your life than its worth? A young child may see an ice-cream shop and says to dad "I want an ice-cream". Dad knows that the son has already had enough to eat and says "No! You have already had enough". Dad knows that the child does not need the ice-cream. After some persistence from the child dad finally gives in and gives the child a double scoop ice-cream with everything in the knowledge that the child will not be well after eating it. Sure enough the child is sick and wishes he did not have the ice-cream. Isn’t our spiritual father the same?

Judging others (Top)
We are human and our physical needs often get in the way of our spiritual needs. Often in life we do things to each other out of ignorance, revenge, or even vindictiveness. How often do we judge ourselves and others according to our own standards?

Our father (through Jesus) never judges us, so who gave us authority to judge ourselves or each other? I believe it is we that will judge ourselves, and others. We will decide our own destiny when the door opens to salvation. Jesus reminds us that we reap what we sow. If we feed and nurture the seeds of LOVE we feed and nurture the Holy Spirit inside of us and others. If we heap hate and unforgiveness on us and others we poison the Holy Spirit inside of us and others.

Beware of self righteousness for this rarely comes from GOD righteousness.
LOVING others comes from LOVING our father. That LOVE is unconditional, which means that our LOVE for others should be unconditional. By LOVING others we accept them for who they are. How often do we try to change others? A tree (for example) is perfect in gods image, but how often do we look at a branch or a leaf and say to ourselves “Oh, I don’t like that branch there, it looks out of place”, or “that dead leaf needs to be removed”. There is a good chance we will end up with nothing left if we try hard enough. The more we try to make the tree perfect in our own image, the less perfect it becomes in gods image. It is only through forgiveness and healing that we can see ourselves and others as our father sees us and them.

We may call ourselves or others a Catholic, Protestant, Jew, Atheist, Muslim, Agnostic, New Age, Scientologist, or any other label, but our father knows where our heart is. Does it really matter what we call ourselves or how we behave? What matters is a genuine LOVE for others that comes from our father. I have met a few non-Christians that have more LOVE in them than Christians.

When we LOVE others we accept the good and the bad. GOD made us different. We have all come from different places and have different views and attitudes. Of course there are going to be conflicts in personalities. Seeing others in LOVE allows us to overcome those differences and see them as GOD sees them. We need to remember that GOD LOVES them, so shouldn’t we LOVE them also.

The Good Samaritan (Top)

This story shows how we should live our lives. The Samaritan had more compassion and LOVE for another person than the priest or the Levite. Jesus does not mention what happened to the man or the inkeeper, however, it is safe to assume that they were both touched by the LOVE showen by the Samaritan. The bible talks about the day of Judgement, when we are judged according to our lives here on earth. If we live our lives based on this outcome we miss the whole point of the BIBLE and there is a danger that we may put it before our LOVE for others; that we LOVE others because we will be judged (we put conditions on our LOVE, self righteousness). GOD does not want that. Are we no better than the pharisees that put conditions on gods LOVE.

False Idols (Top)
It is so easy to get caught up in this physical world and forget where we came from. Anything that we covet in the physical world becomes an obsession or an addiction. The scriptures talk about coveting another man’s possessions. However this is only half the story. If any object or symbol becomes more important than our relationship with god or each other, that object or symbol becomes a false idol. A good example is the Christian Cross or fish. If we put this object or symbol above our LOVE for others, we also put it above our LOVE for our father. If we put ourselves above our LOVE for others, we also put ourselves above our LOVE for our father. Sometimes we put our religion above GOD. How often do we get so caught up in the beliefs and practices of a particular faith or discipline that we judge others according to those beliefs and practices? The bible can be such a divisive thing if we use a particular scripture to judge ourselves or others. If we put the scriptures above our LOVE for others, we also put the scriptures above our LOVE for our father. The same can be said for any other object or symbol such as a picture of a devil or dragon, a doll, an ice cream, a bar of chocolate, or even a family pet.

Do we really LOVE that chocolate, that movie or new sports car? Do we really make LOVE?

What is SIN? (Top)
The bible tells us that the unforgivable SIN is to sit on the fence. Our father is pleased if we LOVE and serve him. Our father is also OK if a person is against him, after all he did give us the choice. What drives our father nuts is when we can not make up our mind if we are for or against him. Fortunately this won’t happen. “Why?” you may ask. Well, the answer is not really straight forward and needs to be understood in the context of our relationships with each other.

If I give my son a car, it is because I LOVE him. It is my inheritance to him. I trust that he will use it wisely in my name. However, he has the choice to it how he sees fit. He may use it with respect and kindness to others, or, he may use it to destroy others. If he uses it with a genuine LOVE for others, then he has my blessing. If he uses it to hurt others, then I feel a great sadness and loss. This does not mean that I do not LOVE him. I will always LOVE him and only hope that he finds in his heart to LOVE others as he is LOVED.

It is not possible to sin against our father. He has left the door open through Jesus Christ. We all have a special relationship with our father (whether we chose to accept it or not is our choice). It is our relationships with each other that creates the problems. Sin, as we know it, is against each other rather than against our father. Anything we do to each other can either build up or destroy this relationship with our father. Even the smallest word or act against another is like the straw that broke the camels back. A lack of respect or thought against another can be enough to bury that person’s relationship with our father deep inside. Most of the time we really don’t know what we are doing. Most of the time we do this to each other unintentionally, in ignorance or as a self defence mechanism. Things like Peer Pressure and the need to conform to be a part of a group often make us do things to others that we otherwise really wouldn’t do. We also learn behaviour from our parents, brothers and sisters and other important people in our lives, and, how we are treated by others.

Growing up is never an easy task. There are too many distractions. We test the boundaries that others put in our lives. We see things from our own perspective and fail to appreciate the perspective of others. We can never see the whole, we can only see things as we see them. We can only understand things as we understand them.

When we sin against each other we transgress our father’s law to LOVE each other as we are LOVED. Our father has placed boundaries in our lives. We need to respect those boundaries. Respect for others, patience, empathy etc are those boundaries. What belongs to a person belongs to that person. What is given in LOVE is received in LOVE. What is given in anger is received in anger. What is given without permission is given without LOVE. What is taken without permission is taken without LOVE. If our heart is full of our fathers LOVE for each other there is no room for anything else.

Sin against each other creates barriers or walls between our father and each other. Things that happened or did not happen to us earlier in our lives hang around until they are dealt with. We try to manage painful experiences by blocking them away from our consciousness. These unconscious memories act as blocks and stop the full development of the person both spiritually and physically. People generally live their lives in very stressful states because they unconsciously hang on to a lot of baggage and unforgiveness. We can also become attached to objects (animate and inanimate) as a defence against the real world. We find security in things that can not hurt us.

How many people can say that they have not been hurt by a fellow Christian? We all have our own ways of seeing things and unintentionally treat others as we see them and not how GOD sees them, or because we are having a bad day. I have heard of Churches self-destruct because someone parked in another persons parking spot.

Forgiveness (Top)
If we sin against another we don’t need to ask forgiveness from our father. What we need to do is ask for forgiveness from the person we have sinned against. If a person sins against us we need to forgive the person in LOVE, especially if the person is unaware of the sin. How can we be forgiven if we dont forgive others? "And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. (The Lords Prayer: Matthew 6:12 King James Version (KJV)).

If I put my faith in our father then my LOVE for others is unconditional. I can forgive others just as our father forgave them. The act of asking forgiveness and forgiving others is a very humbling experience. It requires an amount faith, and levels the playing field. It recognises that while we are different, we are equal and are valued and LOVED for our differences. Each of us is special and LOVED by our father. Our father does not put labels on us. Our father does not judge us. He LOVES us.

While we do have free choice, we also have obstacles that can be a real test in life. How we deal with those obstacles is very much determined by our own experiences in life and the others around us. Underneath all the layers that we accumulate through out our life, we all have the same need: to LOVE and be LOVED. Sometimes that need is buried so deep within the pain, bitterness and loneliness that we may have, that we can not share it with others, and look for something else to fill that need and emptiness inside of us. We may carry a cross around with us, some may have small crosses and some may have large crosses. Our Father wants us to give him our burden, pain and bitterness that we may have, and live fulfilled lives.

The world today is so self-centred. Everything is me, me, me. Jesus asks us to die to self and to LOVE others as we are LOVED. To step out in an act of faith and to forgive another is the most precious thing a person can do.

Small sins are easily forgiven. But hard is it to forgive large sins against each other. If someone takes a small amount of money and asks forgiveness it is easy to forgive. If someone takes all a persons wealth, or even the life of a loved one, forgiveness comes less easily and is sometimes impossible. We talk about finding “Closure” on events that have a negative impact on our lives. Closure is about letting go and getting on with our lives. Often we look for something to replace the loss as a substitute for forgiveness, that our forgiveness is conditional on receiving some payment for the loss. We need to remember that our father’s forgiveness is never conditional. He has already forgiven us.

Putting our faith in Jesus means putting our faith in our father. Believing in Jesus means believing in our father. He has been given authority here on earth to act as our sponsor before GOD. Anyone that believes in the message of Jesus, by default, believes in his father.

Healing (Top)
Healing is not change. Healing is fixing or repairing what is broken. Healing is also not replacing but allowing the spirit and body to return to a state of completeness. Most sickness and ill health comes from a disconnection between the Holy Spirit and the physical body that it lives in. Most people live very stressful lives that they are not even aware of.

My 30 or so years experience with people with high support needs has shown me that healing is both spiritual as well as physical. I have seen it so often where we attend to the physical needs and not the spiritual needs of a person, that complications develop and that person does not survive. Why is it that a person may survive a severe trauma illness or accident and we think “No Way”? I have seen people that are not expected to live more that a few years live on to well into old age. I have also seen people that are expected to live into old age and pass away quite suddenly. Why is this? I believe that people that are not expected to live receive more attention (LOVE) than someone that is reasonably healthy. If a person does not have strong close relationships with others for various reasons, that person may loose interest in life, or find something else as a substitute. Some people don’t know what LOVE is. Some people carry so much pain and bitterness inside of them selves that no matter what we do to them they end up destroying themselves through that pain and bitterness.

We all have this inbuilt need to LOVE and be LOVED, however, the inability to let go of LOVED ones that have left us or passed away also creates lots of problems. The inability to let go creates all sorts of blockages and barriers between ourselves and our father. We torture the Holy Spirit inside of us. This creates a lot of stress in the body that leads to psychological and physical problems and even death.

If we do not fulfil this basic need inside of us we look to substitutes in the physical world. Alcohol, drugs, sex, violence, gambling and even the scriptures are all a way to fill this need inside. We use these to hide from the reality of our lives. We drive the Holy Spirit deep inside of us and look to other things such as pets and other objects that we can LOVE without being hurt, or to replace lost loves.

We also try to control others as a way to give meaning to our lives. We learn techniques and behaviours from significant others that we find useful in dealing with situations. These strategies become so embedded in our psyche we no longer look to out father for guidance.

Letting go is such a huge leap of faith for some that they can not deal with it. Letting go means dying to self. Letting go acknowledges that we can not do things ourselves. Letting go means letting go of all the useless baggage in our lives. Letting go is about releasing all the evil spirits inside of us (envy, jealously, greed etc). Letting go means giving the Holy Spirit permission to grow and prosper in our lives. Letting go means letting our father into our lives.

Our special gifts (Top)
Each of us has special gifts that the Holy Spirit has given us that we use to share our fathers love. We have all these gifts inside of us but one or more are special. Some have a gift of the arts (music, painting, acting, languages etc). Others have a gift of healing, prophecy, teaching, empathy etc. It is through these gifts that we serve our father. These special gifts are also known as ministries because they are how we minister our fathers LOVE to each other. People may refer to these gifts as natural talents, and that is exactly what they are, they all come from our father.

It is interesting that when a person serves and acknowledges our father the gift is called a “Spiritual Gift”. If the person does not acknowledge our father the gift is called a talent. Prediction is “Prophecy” if our father is acknowledged and “Fortunetelling” if our father is not acknowledged. A healer is called a “Spiritual Healer” if our father is acknowledged in the healing and a “Faith Healer” if our father is not acknowledged. Interesting that faith is involved in both types of healing. In both types of healing, the healing is not guaranteed. This happens in all the other ministries where the gift is called one thing where our father is acknowledged and something else where our father is not.

How often does someone say something, or we hear something on the radio or TV that really touches our heart or spirit? How often do we really feel that that person is talking to me? We might be involved in something with the radio on in the background and all of a sudden it seems that someone turns up the volume to listen to a song or a message? Alternatively we may see or here something that makes the blood curdle and we feel revulsion and disgust. Why is this? How often do we have an intuition of feeling about a person or situation? Where do these feelings come from? The Holy Spirit can work in all sorts of ways, if we let it. Even through non believers.

Any one can throw a dart or hit a golf ball with a golf stick. But it requires skill, dedication and training to hit the bullseye or get a hole in one. Using our father’s gifts is no different. We need to have an understanding well grounded in our relationship with our father. Our mind needs to be focused on the goal. If our mind is unfocused or distracted anything can happen. If we use the gift for personal gain or glory we are not serving our father and this leads to all sorts of unintended consequences.

How often have you heard a piece of music or a song that really touches the heart? It moves the spirit inside. A person can learn all the technical stuff about cords and scales but it is only when the person plays or sings with a passion that comes from inside that the music comes alive. The bible is no different. We can read it as a technical manual and learn all the scriptures by rote but it is only when we live the bible that it comes alive in us.

Fellowship (Top)
Jesus did not live his life alone and neither should we. We are not designed to be alone. We need companionship and company. We need to share, to LOVE and be LOVED. Fellowship is supporting each other in times of need. Fellowship is sharing company with likeminded. Fellowship is giving. Fellowship is also a relationship with our father, through Jesus, who provides all our needs. Just as Jesus was the son of GOD, so are we through the body of Christ. Fellowship provides those basic spiritual needs with our father and each other. Fellowship is also about accepting each other for who we are, warts and all.

Community (Top)
If fellowship is our spiritual relationships with each other then community is our physical relationships with each other.

Communities are as varied and individual as its members. Most people belong to two or more communities. Family, education, business, work, sport, religion, culture all involve communities that we take for granted as a normal part of our lives. They seem to be a part of the background. It’s only when things are not going the way that we want, that we take any notice of them.

Most people think of communities as a place or setting, or a suburb or city that they live in. Communities are much more that that. They are the very essence of how we live and socialise with others. We have our own personal communities, the communities that we are a part of and the communities that we associate with.

Communities are the building blocks that allow us to make sense of the world in which we live, participate and share experiences. They provide a sense of identity and purpose, a sense of being a part of and belonging.

Each community that we are a part of has a particular role or ministry that we use to minister our fathers LOVE to each other. The prophetic ministry provides prophecy. The healing ministry provides healing. The leadership ministry provides leadership etc. Together, these communities are the body of Christ. They provide the means to serve our father here on earth.

Communities are about caring and sharing.
The idea of "community" probably came about where people gathered around a common area for their mutual benefit. Sharing a language, customs, ideas, skills, goods and services, or protection from enemies would be some of the advantages in being a part of a group.

Over the years the idea of community has changed to accommodate different things. While different definitions mean different things, the idea is the same; that a group comes together or lives together to share something that is of value to the members of that community.

We see these communities in everyday life. Our families, where we work, play or learn, where we go shopping, down to the pub or to the hospital all involve communities that we participate in. While some are important and others are not so important to us they are taken for granted as a normal part of life.

Home groups (Top)
A home group is a place where Fellowship and Community comes together. The Church is a place where we all come together for praise and worship. Different people come together for different needs. The service is a way for people to meet others and participate in the activities of the Church. A person may have a particular need that needs to be met, and each ministry of the Church is designed to fulfil that need. Home groups are an important part of a church where fellowship is on a more personal level. Home groups are a place where people come together in trust and confidence. Home groups are also individual in that they are designed to fulfil a particular need. Some are study groups, some are praise and worship groups, some are social groups, some are focus groups (evangelist, community help, healing etc). They all have different flavours. What is important is the relationship of the home groups with the Church that they are a part of. It may take a while to find a home group that meets a particular need.

Churches are getting bigger and bigger these days. This is not a bad thing as long as the needs of the members are being met. The bigger the church, the more important the home groups become in fulfilling the needs of the members. Mega churches loose the sense of fellowship with each other. A church is like a well oiled machine. Things need to be done in a set order at set times so that everybody knows what needs to be done. People know what to expect. The service starts at the same time and has the same formula so the members can plan their activities for the day. A congregation of 1000 or more can not hope to be all things to all members. A person is invited to a church or is drawn to a church for a need. If that need is not met they may become disappointed or disillusioned. Home groups become the focal point of the church.

Our journey in life (Top)
The bible talks about a kingdom of heaven and a day of judgement. We sometimes focus so much on our own journey that we forget about the journey of others towards that goal. While we all come from different places and have different paths to travel. We are all trying to serve our father. Sometimes our paths may cross others on a different path, but we are all aiming for the same destination. Yes there will be a day of judgment, but we still need to show respect and kindness (LOVE) to others along the way. We may plan a road trip from Perth to Sydney. We have the destination fixed in our mind. This does not mean that we can ignore all the others that cross our path. We need to prepare for each stage of our journey. We need to be aware of others using the road and be mindful that they are on different paths. We have a choice to just bulldoze our way through, or treat others with respect and kindness along the way. There will be others that do not share the same destination and that is not really important. What matters is how we treat others along the way. Life is full of traffic lights, stop signs, no entries, single lanes, highways etc, etc. Some stages in the journey are difficult and other stages are easy. We need to prepare for each stage before we get to it so we don’t get into trouble. We need the right supplies and equipment. We also rely on others along the way to help us if we get into trouble, and should be prepared to help others if they get into trouble.

Jesus tells us that there have been and WILL be good and bad times in our lives, and it is how we deal with those good and bad times that makes the difference.