2019 Qld Central Zone Rally/Fellowship Weekend

21-22 April 2018

Theme: Teapots with CharacterHosts: Biloela Parish

Please won’t you join me for a cup of tea, as we journey through our rally weekend topic Teapots with Character.

On Saturday morning all were welcomed to Biloela, with a cup of tea (or coffee) before we started our formal proceedings. Pastor Graham Pfeffer welcomed all and began his devotion with a video which showed us how to make a ‘pot of tea with character’. Firstly, we must use fresh water, boil it for three to four minutes and warm the pot before putting the tea leaves in. After adding the boiling water, let the brew steep till all the goodness and flavour have been extracted from the tea leaves, before pouring into cups. If adding sugar or milk, stir well. Each day we are encouraged to have devotions and then sit quietly and let God’s Word steep and brew in our hearts, so we can stir one another up for love and good works, to share and be a blessing to all we meet. God’s Word is living.

Praise songs interspersed the day’s proceedings. We were privileged to have both our LWQ and LWA presidents present. We felt privileged and honoured to welcome members from BS&GC, WBB, DD zones and ladies from Mackay. Karen Bryce gave us a briefing on LWQ matters and Tuula Contarino gave us some highlights and stresses in her LWA president’s position. Dianne Krenske gave her zone president’s report and Carol Hartwig reported on the financials. All office bearers were returned to the positions. The offering, which amounted to $876.50 for the day, is to be given to Wahroonga Retirement Village, Biloela. Our giving shows our hearts are being poured out for the Lord’s work. Our project for the year, thus far amounting to $350, is ‘Home of Praise’, Thailand. A stagnant amount, of $860.50, in our LLL account, is to be given as a yearly bursary of $200, for four years, to a student in need, at Redeemer College, Biloela. $500 from our Working account to be given to Abelita, a nursing student who is graduating this year, from East Timor.

Bible study was capably led by Pastor Graham and Pastor Steve Jaensch (Emerald). How do we become ‘teapots with character’? Firstly pray, for just as the hot water warms the teapot, through prayer, God warms our hearts, and after being warmed, we must put on the whole armour of God before we start the day. Who are we? We are children of God led by the Spirit. As Christians, we are called to imitate Jesus character. Always be thankful and forgiving, holding no grudges. Just as good brewed tea goes to waste, if it is not poured out, so our faith is of no benefit to others if we do not stir ourselves and pour out ourselves to them. Poured out living involves focusing our attention on Jesus Christ who laid down his life and poured out his blood for us, sinners.

After lunch, Christian Stern from ALWS Queensland office, enlightened us on projects of ALWS. His challenge to us “Will you walk with us, as we welcome a stranger”. He spoke of the Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya, which was set up in 1992, to house a few thousand people and now has 34,000 refugees. Help is given to people, with special needs. Children are educated and adults are taught special skills. ALWS works in more than eight different countries, using long term sustainable projects. Christian had tea towels, pencil cases etc. made by people in the “When love comes to life” camp for people to take or give a donation towards. $11,670 was donated to ALWS by LWA in 2017. ‘Will we pour ourselves out to a stranger?‘

After our closing devotion and praise time, there was a short time available for those who wanted to dress for the occasion, before continuing on our journey, physically, to a Biloela member’s beautifully set up garden for our high tea. Old style cup, saucer and plate sets complimented the older tables, which were decorated with old books, a box brownie camera etc. The very tasty morsels were served on tiered cake plates, and we were able to enjoy them with our tea, well brewed, in our beautiful china cups.

Later on, in the evening, we continued on our journey out to a nearby farm, where we enjoyed fellowship together. On arrival, we were served a glass of wine, and later enjoyed a superbly cooked Hangi and sweets.

Thank you to all the Biloela parish people who worked tirelessly behind the scenes, to those who served us all day with beautifully presented, and delicious food. We were preserved in both body and soul.

After a night’s rest, Pastor Graham continued on with the theme at the church service. It was ‘Good Shepherd’ Sunday. Jesus name is ‘I am’. He takes on many characteristics with that name. I am the good shepherd, I am the door, I am the light etc. His character is one of deep love and sacrifice. Let us not forget to stir one another in love. Real love is in ‘action’.

Now, if you have finished your cup of tea, let’s go and put love into action, and pour ourselves out for others.

Kathy Kucks

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