Khesed News #76 May 2008

Inside:
Sacred songs workshop
Australia’s apology
Mt Magnet
Tweed Valley DTS
Khesed Annual Reports
National Act of Recognition
WCGIP report
General News & Events

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Redeeming Old Covenant Law and

 

Traditional Culture

We have often talked about redeeming culture and indigenous expressions of worship. Sometimes there have been Aboriginal Christians with body paint dancing to the Lord in church. There have been didgeridoos and traditional styles of music used to worship God. There have been traditional styles of painting telling Bible stories and truths. Some have used dreaming stories and traditional ceremonies to show how God has revealed Himself long before the Gospel was brought to this land and people by British Christians.

But some Christians feel uneasy about much of this, and are concerned that there are demonic powers involved in traditional law, ceremonies and cultural expressions. They have good reasons to feel concerned, because Satan has tried to corrupt and destroy every form of worship to God in every culture.

It is always a difficult decision to see if these things need to be destroyed, or whether they can be cleansed and purified from the evil within them to find pure worship to the One True God in Heaven.

A few weeks ago, a Christian anthropologist friend spoke with me about some of these issues. He has deep intimate knowledge of Aboriginal culture and law, and claimed that it is all evil. God doesn’t want that stuff! He wants a new expression of worship from every culture.

As I pondered this, the Lord showed me clearly that no Christian should live under Old Covenant Law and practices. Jesus Christ didn’t come to destroy the law – Jewish law or the law of any other group of people. Jesus came to bring all people into a New Covenant relationship with God Almighty .Jesus came to fulfil the real law that has been hidden by rules and practices for generations - through a new covenant, sealed with His own blood.

I’m still asking the Lord what that really means in practical details. I still believe that there is not just one Christian culture, but there are many different cultural expressions of God’s character in His people.

In February a small group of us met in Rooty Hill at YWAM’s Island Breeze base to talk and pray about expressions of worship from the land through indigenous people. I was again asked what that looks like. Last year, I replied that I didn’t know, but believed I would recognize it when I saw and heard it. I think we started to see and hear a little of it during those few days. It is an ongoing process of discovering that worship to God. We commissioned Island Breeze and Kyle Slabb from northern NSW to seek the Lord more for its release.We hope to meet again soon as we continue the search.

We all need to seek God’s New Covenant expressions of worship in every culture – using the instruments and styles He has given to each cultural group. He isn’t limited to 18th century hymns or to Hillsong styles of worship. God has many instruments and voices and languages and styles of art and music in His gallery, His orchestra and His choir!

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MUSIC OF A MOVEMENT

- from Richard Twiss, Wiconi International

A little over ten years ago there was virtually no Native-style music honoring Jesus that incorporated traditional drumming, chanting and other tribal styles and sounds. Today there are many dozens of such recordings.

This reality is a refection of the spirit of Jesus at work in the lives of men and women who have been inspired to write new songs of prayer, celebration and honor to Jesus, born out of their identity as Native people.

Accompanying every move of the spirit in a generation or people has been a “new sound” of celebration, or indigenous hymnody; from John Wesley, William Booth, The Jesus People Movement, to this current global Indigenous Jesus Movement. These new songs are helping bear the message of freedom in Jesus that you can be fully Native and fully embraced by God in your cultural world to people everywhere.

 I want to recommend three new CD releases. They are Jonathan Maracle and Broken Walls “The Father’s Dance,” Michael Jacobs’, “Mystery,” and Cheryl Bear’s “The Good Road.” Jonathan is Mohawk, Michael is Cherokee and Cheryl is Nadleh Whut’en and while their music is different in style and sound, each share a message of freedom and hope in Jesus as native worshippers of Creator.

 You can listen to sound-bytes of many of their songs on our website along with a few dozen more CD’s of powwow drumming music, flute music, praise music, instrumental stuff,etc., and then purchase them from our shopping cart feature - www.wiconi.com

Workshop on Sacred Songs & Dance at Elcho Island

Justina Truscott [nee Smith] led a workshop at the Alice Springs National Christian Dance Fellowship conference late last year. Justina married Ps Keith Truscott’s son in January this year.

Church leaders at Elcho Island have now invited her to lead a workshop there from 9-14 April.

God has prepared and anointed her with His Spirit for thisministry and she is excited at this opportunity. She would like to take another Christian dancer with her.

Please pray for wisdom and protection for her and all involved, as well as an urgent release of finance for the trip. Her phone number is 0431 415318.

 

World Christian Gathering 0n Indigenous People

Jerusalem, Israel
9-18 September 2008

URGENT  REGISTRATION REQUIRED

DUE TO TOURIST PRESSURES IN ISRAEL, WCGIP REGISTRATION SHOULD BE MADE BY 20TH APRIL IF AT ALL POSSIBLE

TO SECURE A PLACE

            A DEPOSIT OF ONLY $300 IS NEEDED AT THIS TIME [not refundable].

URGENT - Please register and pay with Inner Faith Travel    www.ift.net.au as quickly as possible..... Check out the website for any other details....www.wcgip.org

Use the enclosed registration form. If you are not able to go, please pass the form on to others and pray for God’s chosen people to hear about the gathering, register and for all the necessary details of finance, work and family issues to be resolved.

 

WCGIP Bookings          -from Gavriel Geven & Richard Twiss

Although we are still five months away from the Gathering, we are getting pressure from both the airlines and the hotels to pay deposits on the blocks of seats and rooms they are holding for us. The number of people trying to visit Israel is at an all-time high, and there is heavy competition.

In the coming weeks, we will begin losing some of those seats and rooms. If possible please encourage people to pre-register and pay their deposits quickly. It appears we will eventually reach a point of having to turn people away who did not sign-up early enough. We have verbal commitments for groups totaling more than 2,000 international delegates, but expect that to drop drastically when it comes to actual registrants. Surprisingly, most registrations thus far are from tribes that have never before been represented at a World Gathering. We are still holding on to 1,000 reserved beds, but will soon begin losing some of them. Having to turn people away would/will be a painful thing for us.

The new rule is that the airline will only guarantee prices (base price) for 3-7 days and the fuel taxes are IN ADDITION to the base price which is linked to the price of a barrel of oil for that day. Tickets have gone up $500.00 in some cases.  Please ask your intercessors to PRAY as that is what we all need the most.


National Act of Recognition

The foundation of British arrival
in Botany Bay

Lindsay McDowell wrote in November: “older men are often invisible. Why? After decades of effort they have given up, quietly fading back into the shadows, disempowered. Our current ministry is very much focused on drawing near to these men to restore New Life.”

A few weeks ago the Recognition Management Team met with Elders (the men) at Botany Bay, with some of the young people also present. At one point the comment was made that the Recognition Vision is dealing with the roots of the tree, rather than just the fruit. The men really see this and are greatly encouraged.

‘We are seeing faces lifting with joy. Hope and love is being birthed.There are signs some “fire in the belly” is returning. One person in the community last week said to Brendan, “You people are doing a great job in our community. The way in which you are working with the old men...that has never happened before.” ‘

Even ‘non-religious’ people are realizing that this vision has a spiritual basis and power. The dream of unity that has seemed totally impossible is close to fulfillment. However, Satan is not happy and a few people seem to oppose everymove towards unity and growth. In 1 Samuel 15:23, God declares rebellion and stubbornness to be ‘witchcraft, iniquity and idolatry.’

Meetings are planned with the Botany Bay women on 14-15 April to talk together about the vision. There will also be meetings with elders in Dubbo as part of the aim to bring Aboriginal elders from around the nation to offer their support to the local Botany Bay people.

Continue to pray for wisdom and protection for all the elders and community, as well as the Recognition Management Team: Bret Ridley (Canberra), Brendan Johnston (Sydney), Lindsay McDowell (Canberra).

Australia’s Apology & Christ’s Broken Walls

Notes from a Bible study/prayer meeting at Eagle Rock Community Church, Tuesday night 12/2/08 – the night before the Government’s apology to the ‘Stolen Generation’.

Ps Tim Edwards has often spoken over the years about Ephesians 2 verse 14.

14 For Christ himself has made peace between us Jews and you Gentiles by making us all one people. He has broken down the wall of hostility that used to separate us.15 By his death he ended the whole system of Jewish law that excluded the Gentiles. His purpose was to make peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in himself one new person from the two groups. 16 Together as one body, Christ reconciled both groups to God by means of his death, and our hostility toward each other was put to death.

 17 He has brought this Good News of peace to you Gentiles who were far away from him, and to us Jews who were near.18 Now all of us, both Jews and Gentiles, may come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us.

 19 So now you Gentiles are no longer strangers and foreigners. You are citizens along with all of God’s holy people.You are members of God’s family. 20 We are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself.

 21 We who believe are carefully joined together, becoming a holy temple for the Lord. 22 Through him you Gentiles are also joined together as part of this dwelling where God lives by his Spirit.

 

Many cry out to God for Him to break down the walls between us –parents & children, bosses & workers, Muslims & Christians, black & white…….  But God says: ‘Ihave already broken down the walls. Who built them up again?’

At the time of the Wik land issue and the Ten Point Plan, a Liberal MP invited Ps Tim along to a Liberal Party meeting in the Cairns Convention Centre. He walked in alone at a tea break and suddenly  everyone went quiet and you could hear the cups rattling at the fear that this wild looking Aboriginal man had hundreds of other Aborigines outside the door. But there were none.

As he got talking with them, they expressed the concern of pastoralists that Aboriginal land rights would mean Aborigines would come onto their cattle stations and shoot their cattle.

Tim replied: ‘You know, we all have our favourite picnic spots that our families have visited many times over the years, and we like to go and have a picnic there still – Aborigines, as well as whitefellas. But you know what our people are frightened of? – that we will get shot!’

The story was told of a man who died recently in north Queensland. When he was a small child, his mother was carrying him when a pastoralist shot her on ‘his’ land. The bullet passed through her into her son. They both survived, but he had that bullet in his body until he died as an old man.

Tim talked of a couple who came home with a car load of groceries. The husband carried some inside, then sat down to watch the football. Later he went out to bring in the remainder from the car, but found his wife had done it. He had to get his own dinner that night, and there was a cold wall between them in bed that night. When he eventually asked what was up, the cold reply was: ‘You know!’

When we build up the walls between us, we need to be bold enough to say sorry, apologise and forgive each other, to prevent rebuilding the walls.

Today in Australia is like when Nelson Mandela walked out of the prison in South Africa; like when the Berlin Wall suddenly came down.

It’s not just an apology to one group of people, it’s a new era when all the walls built up in this nation can be destroyed and we become one. It’s a beginning that we need to work from, but it needs work that brings results or it will just be empty politicians’ words. But it is a change in the heavenlies over our nation.

 

Easter Convention at Mt Magnet

Ps Yowandi Clancy asked Ps Tim Edwards to bring a team from Eagle Rock Community Church to Mt Magnet to help run a convention over Easter. A busload of musicians and church families travelled the 600kms from Perth with a trailer load of instruments and PA gear for meetings on the oval at night and community hall in the mornings. Ps Carl Musch from Indigenous Ministry Links Australia came over from Mareeba to assist Yowandi in organising the event. Visitors came from Pt Hedland, Tom Price, Kalgoorlie and other parts of the Pilbara and eve nBussleton in the south-west.

It was a great time of worship, fellowship and ministry for all, including the Eagle Rock team. The Christian life can be very lonely and dry in remote towns and community.

 

Discipleship Training in Tweed Heads

Ps Willie Dumas and Tweed Valley Christian Fellowship started their college in July 2007, with three students in their first school. They graduated in February and are really moving on with the Lord. Their new school started later that month with eight students aged 17 to 27, all eager to grow in the Lord and learn how to serve Him better.

They are again praying for additional finance, particularly as some of their equipment badly needs upgrading.

Ps Tim Edwards is teaching on ‘The Fear of the Lord’ from 31 March to 4 April, and John & June Blacket will be teaching on Spiritual Warfare the following week.

 [We will be at Mulli Mulli on Sunday 13th, followed by family time in Newcastle, then spending the weekend with Willie & Carleen Pickett in Geelong before returning home on 22nd April].

 

DrJulie Waddy, OAM

Congratulationsto Julie on her award earlier this year of the Order of Australia Medal for services to indigenous people!

 

Aboriginal Bible Releases

Ngaanyatjarra:  11May  at Warburton Ranges  Contact Dorothy & Amee for details on 08 8952 3194

Djambarrpuyngu:  8 June at Galiwin’ku, Elcho Island

 

Simply The Story

- a powerful wa yto share Bible stories with non-literate people.

John & June have attended workshops on this approach, and are seeking the Lord over how itis to be released into the Aboriginal church in Australia.

Aborigines are natural story-tellers, but are not using this gifting effectively in the church. Rather they are basically following western missionary literate style sof sharing the Gospel.

 


Khesed Annual Director’s Report

-John Blacket 

Earlier this year we felt it was time to review what we are doing andmake some changes. We asked the Lord what should be the central focus of ourwork, and felt His reply was: Mentor and Resource Australian indigenous Christian leaders.

I reflect on what we have been doing:

Supporting and shaping directions for organizations and the nation through various committees, seminars, and other meetings; teaching through God’s Dirt, God’s Feet, and a spiritual warfare course; encouraging indigenous worship from the land; mentoring indigenous leadership of the nation; prayer groups and networks; newsletters and prayerletters; developing and distributing books,CDs, DVDs; acting as a channel for finance to support indigenous Christianministry…  I could go on and find other things.

During 2007 June and I transferred our church membership from Southside Vineyard, which we helped plant almost 10 years ago, to Eagle Rock Community Church, led by Ps Tim & Di Edwards, and have been fully involved there, especially in the worship team [John] and children’s church [June]. This has beena very rich experience where we are encouraging and mentoring indigenous Christians. It has helped us to realise the truth of what God’s focus is for us, and also to start to see some of the areas we need to reduce, like administration – somehow! Our task is now to bring about these changes.

A lot of effort has gone into developing resources in the last year: DVDs of God’s Dirt and God’s Feet, which are now available in a pack with the booklets. We were able to get 500 copies of each reproduced at a reasonable price using a process that is much better than burning them on our own computer, eliminating all the problems of DVD player compatibility that have plagued us recently.

We also did a lot of work on a simple English version of God’s Story DVD. Further work is require this year before this is available, but we now have copies of the original version with Discussion Guide – RRP $20, but see our order form. This is a significant 80 minute DVD giving an overview of the whole Bible, which we have found few Christians understand and can lead up to conversion and revival among many people groups, including Muslims and Hindus.

Once again we praise God for all He is doing in this nation and for the privilege of being involved with Him. Thank you all for your part in it all!


Khesed Ministries Inc.                  Audited Financial Report
from 1 July 2006 to 30 June 2007

Cash Balances:       30 June 2007       1 July 2006

Trust account                             $ 45                $ 2,792

Cash accounts                     $ (567)                   $ 576

Total Cash Balances:         $ (522)                 $3,368

 

                                        2006-7                       2005-6

Total Income:             $ 90,567                 $ 104,796

Total Outgoings:       $ 94,436                    $ 98,074

Surplus (Deficit):        $(3,869)                       $6,722

    

KHESED MINISTRIES

Income                                       2007           2006

Donations & Fees               $ 19,860      $34,103

Travel & Vehicle recoups     $ 1,600       $5,139

Admin Recoups & interest      $ 919            $ 95

Staff Support & recoups       $ 5,610        $9,435

Promotion Income                    $ 15             $ 815

Ministry Events                     $ 1,270      $ 13,311

Capital Fund donations     $ 1,346          $5,745

Vehicle Loan                                         $ 10,000

Total Income:                     $ 30,621      $ 78,643

 

Expenses

Tithe                                     $1,589           $ 4,503

Travel Expenses              $ 6,685            $ 8,078

Vehicle Expenses           $ 2,947            $ 3,072

Phone, Internet & Postage $ 2,869        $2,513

Printing                               $ 2,054

Office Equipment             $ 1,314

Other Admin Expenses     $ 369             $4,927

Staff Expenses                $ 4,533            $ 7,307

Promotion                        $ 1,213                $ 533

Newsletter Printing & Postage $ 3,289   $3,232

Resources - Books, Tapes +   $ 934         $652

Ministry Events                       $ 4,321    $ 12,631

Miscellaneous Expenses         $ 85        $5,402

Capital [computer & laserprinter/copier/vehicle]

         Payments                    $ 2,687       $19,189

Loans Repaid [vehicle]    $ 3,150           $6,100

Total Expenses              $ 37,084         $ 73,379

Surplus (Deficit)            $ (6,463)            $5,264

 

    Khesed TRUST FUND

Income

Income in Trust for others   $ 50,000     $13,060

Indigenous Support               $ 6,683        $6,473

Total Income                          $ 56,683    $ 19,533

 

Payments

Payments from Trust to others $ 50,000    $13,060

Indigenous Support                     $ 5,309       $9,339

Total Payments                        $ 55,309     $ 22,399

Surplus (Deficit) $ 1,374 $(2,866)

 

     Khesed PUBLISHING

Income

Freight & Misc. Income                 $ 607           $496

Khesed Print Products              $ 2,029        $3,268

Khesed A/V Products                  $ 161

Other Publishers A/V Products  $ 466

Other Income                                                  $ 2,855

Total Income                             $ 3,263        $ 6,619

 

Expenses

Freight & Miscellaneous           $ 366             $149

Khesed Print Products           $ 1,352               $20

Khesed A/V Products                $ 256

Other Publishers A/V Products  $ 69

Other Expenses                      $ 2,138

Total Expenses                      $ 2,043         $ 2,307

Surplus (Deficit)                  $ 1,220            $4,312

 

Notes:

1. Khesed fully paid out the vehicle loan in September 2007 and has no debts apart from monthly credit card payments and some small payments due to suppliers of CDs and DVDs.

2. At 30 June 2007, Khesed had $420 in tithe still to be paid out.