The ‘crawl’ stage 6 … Bell, Kingaroy & Toowoomba


With Christmas around the corner, our church crawl ended with a rush – four churches in three days!

It was great to reconnect with Bill and Jenny Lutton [Bill was the first minister called to our home church in Townsville back in 1996] at Kingaroy. Bill served as APWM Director for a number of years, and was able to share some valuable insights on mission. We travelled to Bell Presbyterian with Bill for a Friday evening meeting following a congregational dinner. We met parents of a Wycliffe translator serving in PNG, and had many encouraging conversations.



Saturday saw a breakfast gathering in Kingaroy, and again, we met a couple planning to serve in China. After the event, we joined the regular ESL (English as a Second Language) class led by the Lutton’s. It was interesting to hear the students share their experiences of Christmas in their home countries.

Sunday in Toowoomba involved worship services with St David’s in the morning followed by lunch and St John’s at night. We were made to feel very welcome, and it was an enjoyable end to over five weeks on the road. For those into stats, we travelled 4,009 kilometres, visited thirteen 2013_12c_photo (6)congregations, and met folk at thirty-two functions, including worship services, home studies, luncheons, aged care homes, morning teas and a mothers’ group. Add to this the numerous unofficial meetings over meals or a coffee, and the times when people opened their homes to us.

All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as they had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favour of all the people.  Acts 2:44-47

Thanks to all our loyal blog followers for their prayers. Our next posting will be from Kangaroo Ground in mid-January, a week into Equip Summer School. Till then, please keep praying…

Prayer points

Pray that the churches we’ve visited [Mackay, Rockhampton, Yeppoon, Biloela, Roma, Miles, Chinchilla, Bell, Kingaroy & Toowoomba] would continue in their zeal for mission to their communities and beyond.

Praise God for the time staying with Elspeth’s parents in Toowoomba.

Pray for a restful break as we prepare for Summer School commencing January 7.

The ‘crawl’ stage 5 … Miles & Chinchilla


For this stage we made our base camp in Chinchilla, hosted by David and Di Knott. However, our first official duties were at Miles Presbyterian, with an interview during the service leading to some great conversations over morning tea. Once again, we keep meeting folk with a real heart for this ministry. There is a long history of sending and supporting missions from the Darling Downs churches.

The drive from Miles to Chinchilla is nothing like I remember from years past. Industry has come to the region in the form of gas suppliers and power stations, with trucks dominating the highway traffic. The towns are changing too, and spending time with the locals confirms that the impact is seen in many ways. There are new estates, and ‘work camps’ outside town; FIFO (fly in fly out) workers fill the pubs every night; and Chinchilla now has a McDonalds!


The Sunday evening service in Chinchilla was given to the Campbells, for a message from 1 Kings 17 and a presentation which included some interactive cultural challenges. We enjoyed the format, and it provided a foundation for building relationships further over lunches and coffees in the following days.

Cactoblastis Hall
Cactoblastis Hall

Overall, the week was a slower pace for us, but spiritually refreshing. We found some real gems in God’s kingdom! [and we got to see the only Australian memorial building named in honour of an insect!]  God is good at providing what we need at just the right time.

God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.   2 Corinthians 9:8

An ex-tractor fan?
An ex-tractor fan?

Prayer points

– Pray for the believers doing their utmost to serve in the region, that they would find strength and encouragement daily.

– Pray that churches may be able to respond to the change in the community, both in caring for existing members and reaching out to the newcomers. Miles PC has been able to establish a bible study in the nearby ‘work camp’.

– Remember our older saints, as illness and frailty take their toll. May they know grace and hope in their later years.

Next week … Bell, Kingaroy and Toowoomba  

The ‘crawl’ stage 4 … Roma

ImageAfter settling in with Bruce and Alison Clarke Saturday evening, we worshiped with Roma Presbyterian on Sunday morning. Keith spoke from Philippians 2, looking at spiritual service, and we were able to give a detailed presentation following morning tea. The conversations continued afterwards, with a number of requests for ongoing prayer contact.Much of the next four days involved putting the theory of service into practice! In response to our offer to be put to use, Alison arranged for us to visit two dear women in need of some help with a few odd jobs. The ability to serve, and to build relationships in the process, was a great blessing to us. The Clarkes also had to move house due to the sale of their rented property, and the Lord’s provision in us being there to help at the right time was clear to all concerned.


We had several opportunities to be involved in events within the church community, and the town in general. A prayer morning with a few pastors, a chaplaincy breakfast club, and singing with a group at the Westhaven aged home, all added to the connection with the Roma churches. During the Thursday night Christmas street party and a choral performance on Friday hosted by the Uniting Church, the way in which many folk greeted us as friends confirmed that the approach to getting involved in the life of the community was the best way for us to convey the message of partnership in ministry.


Many thanks go to the Church of Christ community for the gracious provision of a campsite behind their church building. We praise God for the way in which he enabled us to serve, and moved others to serve us in such a practical way.

Therefore, my dear friends, … continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfil his good purpose.   Philippians 2:12-13

Prayer points

Pray for unity amongst the Roma churches, and for the effectiveness of joint outreach events in presenting Christ to the community.

Pray for much needed rain in the surrounding region. [The choir performances included “I’m dreaming of a wet Christmas”] The storms we experienced in Biloela largely passed them by!

Uphold the Clarkes as they enjoy a much needed break with family, then return to set up home again in January.                                                                Next week… Chinchilla & Miles.