If there where no rocks on the bed the stream would have no song
Our church is full of real people who have encountered God when they were in real pain. It is in our times of need, that God often feels the closest, and where we really learn his love. At our church, we celebrate the fact that all of us struggle from time to time, so we don’t need to hide our problems. Here are some of the stories of our leaders and what God has brought them through...
John is the senior leader of Coburg Baptist Church. In 2000 in NSW, John completed his degrees in Ministry and Theology whist Pastoring the Entrance Baptist Church, he then planted Grace Community Church in June 2002 and lead them until December 2013. John accepted a call in February 2014 to come down to Melbourne and lead Coburg Baptist Church. John has been married to his beautiful wife Jo for over 2 decades and has two amazing daughters.
In John’s words...
People often ask me, “What do you stand for?” or “What is your heart for ministry?” Put simply, I believe that the first step for a Christian is to understand that we need God’s grace and that we cannot keep doing ‘life’ our own way. Once we have made that decision and decided to live, or at least try to live, a better way, we need to become part of a supporting and encouraging church, something genuine. Then the fun part begins. I believe that there are three very important dimensions to Christianity and without the effective use of all three dimensions in our lives we are missing out — big time.
The Three dimensions are:
1. Relationship leading to deeper relationship
2. Spiritual power leading to freedom
3. Knowledge of truth leading to Understanding
These three dimensions of Christianity must be kept in balance. It’s like a triangle, if you take out one side the whole thing falls down in a heap. Relationship without knowledge and power is treacherous. Knowledge without Power or relationship is impotent. Power without relationship and knowledge is really rather stupid and even quite reckless. I believe that if we can focus on three-dimensional Christianity in all that we do we will see the most amazing, exciting and rewarding things in our lives.
Minh’s family arrived in Australia in the late 70’s as boat people/refugees fleeing from Vietnam. He was 6 years old at the time. He understands many of the struggles that families from other countries have coping with a new life in Australia. His background has given him a wonderful ability to encourage and help people in the difficulties that we all have to cope with from time to time. He and his wife Netty are considering how they can serve God overseas in Asia in the future
Jason knows what it feels like to be bullied and made to feel insignificant. He has travelled the difficult road of learning to find his source of worth and hope in God, and learning the every-day battle to forgive.
Jason is leading our church in eldership, and really understands the difficulties of serving God while having an extremely demanding job. Like many people in our part of the city, he has massive time pressures, and finds his faith is tested and strengthened as he learns to constantly stay close to God, and keep him first when other people and things are clamouring for his attention..
Caleb spent several years ministering to addicts and the poor in inner city Melbourne. Since moving to Coburg, he has seen God continue to work powerfully in his life, helping him grow in character and leadership, while also helping him conquer his own difficulties and addictions. A husband, father and Elder of our church he can be found in the music team, or tinkering with something technical. His personal passion is also a great ministry reaching out to provide positive help and hope to people in the sometimes troubled world of online Xbox gaming.
Jen has been at Coburg Baptist since 2012 and has taken on the role of secretary while continuing to be involve in the music team on a Sunday. Jen has been in an array of churches and ministry positions as she seeks to find where God is calling her to serve. Born and raised in country Victoria, Jen takes every opportunity to get out of the big smoke and see the glory of God through his natural creation.
Marion joined Coburg Church while at Uni studying to become an optometrist. She joined the band, and has grown in her faith and leadership to the point where she now leads the worship team, and does a fantastic job!