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From one extreme to the next...

Sunday 09 February, 2014

Our church group has seen a lot of extremes in the past few weeks as we travelled through the Christmas school holiday period. It held it's challenging moments, and yet was enriching and encouraging at the same time! And through it all our families have been kept safe by our heavenly Father who continues to provide for our Church group throughout time.

So what were the extremes that our group recently faced? Well it has to do with numbers...our school holiday period are often times when a number of our own families take the opportunity to have a break. This year was no exception and it left behind a very small core number of families and individuals. Small numbers can be challenging...a little deflating when it feels that there is no one left in town, when the church worship service feels tiny and that normal Sunday buzz at church is gone. At one point the Sunday worship service was down to just 14 people.

And yet it is amazing how in these 'low' moments God still allowed much fellowship, encouragement and enjoyment to take place. He allowed His word to be preached every week, and the other activities relating to our Sunday were also able to continue as normal. The families that were in Cairns for Christmas were all able to enjoy the day together up at Lake Tinaroo, and it was a special time for all those that could be involved. A few photos of Christmas Day can be found on our facebook page -  We thank God for the way in which He provided for the families who were in Cairns during the Christmas holiday period!

By the middle of January most of our families had returned from their holiday break and over the next couple of weeks we also saw a great influx of visitors. Our worship services went from being very small to overflowing, from one extreme to the next! With lots of visitors a changed atmosphere is felt at church. There is a background hum of conversation as much fellowship takes place, there is an increased volume of singing during the service and we see a large amount of food appear on the lunch table, and an even larger amount of dishes that needs to take place at the end :) It is a special time for our group to be able to host large numbers of families and to share experiences with Christians from all over our country and world. 

With all our families being back in town, and with lots of other visitors in our midst we took the opportunity to enjoy a beach volley ball evening two weeks ago. We experienced a beautiful balmy evening in Cairns, even though it was a tad humid!! No better way than to build up a quick sweat and burn off some energy. We could also celebrate Pastor Ian Wildeboer's birthday, whose family was in Cairns for the week, before heading home to Lae. Below are some photos from this event:

Our Church group has now dropped back into routine and our regular bible study meetings could begin again this week. We continue to study the book of Romans, which has provided some very enriching evenings of discussion. We pray God will bless the time that we have together to study His word.

In the coming months we have some exciting events to look forward to. In about a month's time we look forward to the arrival of Rev and Mrs Kroeze, pastor of the Free Reformed Church in Legana. Rev Kroeze has been granted a period of long-service leave and is willing to spend most of his time with our Church group assisting with worship services as well as a number of other activities. We also hope to receive a visit from Dr Gerhard Visscher, professor at the Canadian Reformed Theological Seminary. He and his wife will be in Cairns for almost 2 weeks and we are excited to be able to benefit from his experience and expertise.

We also have our Church camp scheduled for the Easter weekend. Having experienced such a wonderful church camp last year, we are really looking forward to being able to run this event again. For any visitors who will be in our area during the Easter period, please be advised that our Church worship service will be held at the camp. Feel free to make contact with one of the members on our contacts page if you would like to join us.

Lastly, we anticipate that in the coming months our Church group may be granted the opportunity to call our own Pastor. Although a number of steps still need to take place before this happens it is our prayer that God will open all the necessary doors.  We ask all our readers to also remember this in their prayers. 

As we continue to journey through 2014 let us be reminded of the words found in Psalm 33:

Our soul waits for the LordHe is our help and our shield. For our heart shall rejoice in Him, Because we have trusted in His holy name. Let Your mercy, O Lord, be upon us, Just as we hope in You.

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Posted by Rev. & Mrs Veldman on Sunday 09 February, 2014

Great to read all this exciting news. We hope and pray that soon you may indeed receive your own pastor. We will continue to pray for all of you.