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Transformation not Modification

Andy Elmes

August 2, 2020 • Andy Elmes

Pastor Andy speaks about Transformation not Modification. Last week we heard personal testimonies about how God had changed people and transformed their lives. We can only manage modification but God produces transformation – God on the inside of us changing us totally from the inside out. This is not behaviour modification. God does not just save us but also change us from the inside out, just as in a metamorphosis (a change from one form to another). Much of religion only has a gospel of behaviour modification yet the gospel of Jesus Christ is about God coming to live within a person’s life transforming them. Whether instant or process there is always a starting point. In Luke 19, scripture recalls the life of Zacchaeus, a thief wanting to give back to those he stole from……this was an instant encounter with God that transformed a life. In Acts 9 there is a moment where Saul a serial killer is transformed ….a light shone, he fell to the ground hearing a voice calling him. He asks who calls and hears “I am Jesus who you persecute”…. Later he becomes Paul but from that moment everything became different, a transformed life. Transformation can be instantaneous but also ongoing as well, even if started by a single event, perhaps when we received The Lord. As we commit to living a life of “abiding in Him” (John 15) then there is an ongoing transformation. Many disciples had this type of change as they walked with Jesus over time. There can be moments but as we commit to walking with Him our lives will be transformed. His presence, His Spirit and His Word will transform us daily as we walk with Him. This is still His plan to transform us as it was during biblical times. When we love the presence of God, things that are wrong cannot remain.. deceptions, stubborn things! The bible says we are transformed by His Spirit - 2 Corinthians 3:17-18 (NKJV) says “Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord”. The Holy Spirit now in us causes the transformation in our lives and moves us from glory to glory to be more Christ like. Often this is ongoing when we don’t realise it. Also His Word, the supernatural living words cause everlasting change. Romans 12:2 (NKJV) says ”And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God”. This renewing of our minds comes from reading His word. The Passion Translation embroiders this text further… “Stop imitating the ideals and opinions of the culture around you, but be inwardly transformed by the Holy Spirit through a total reformation of how you think. This will empower you to discern God’s will as you live a beautiful life, satisfying and perfect in his eyes”. WOW! The Holy Spirit and The Word almost dance together inside us to make changes from the inside out. ….The word of God and The Spirit of God were present in creation (Genesis). What for us? We can only manage modification. God does transformation – which occurs when we choose to yield and submit to Him. All we must do is yield and obey….not purpose in our hearts to do what we wish to do but yield to the Holy Spirit and the Word. Obedience is key and produces fruit. Let us be hungry for God and His change in our lives.

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Set Apart | Andy Elmes | 10th January 2021

Andy Elmes • January 10, 2021 • Andy Elmes

Pastor Andy again speaks of the breakthrough he believes will occur to us all in taking part in the twenty one days of fasting at the start of this New Year 2021. He speaks of the need for us to come before The Lord and rid ourselves of junk, pride and so forth, in bringing ourselves to God. Sometimes we need to rid ourselves of things first before we are able to come before The Lord. When we present ourselves to God, it is not the old but the new creation we present to Him. The blood of Jesus has washed away our past sins. Consecration is an interesting and important word if we live with Jesus. It means to be set apart. During Old Testament times it referred to material things being set aside, set apart for His use. Now it is relevant to us, God wants us he wants us to set our lives apart for His use. Consecration begins by us knowing we now belong to God; we have been set apart and bought at a price, by His own blood. Our lives are not our own. In 1 Corinthians 6 verse 15 (NKJV), scripture says “Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ?” So we need to honour God with our bodies. Now we know and believe in the work of the cross, of salvation, we belong to the household of God. We need to understand this not through fear but from love. When we were our own we all messed up! Thankfully Jesus has saved us so this grace of God causes us to live a set apart life for The Lord.

Awaken the Sleeping | Andy Elmes | 3rd January 2021

Andy Elmes • January 3, 2021 • Andy Elmes

This week Pastor Andy speaks about “Awakening the Sleeping”. He began by restating the invitation to a time of prayer and fasting for the first twenty one days of 2021. Fasting is not just about giving up things but being able to hear God in our spirits. Take moments not to feed our soul but our Spirits. Pray for our nation, our church, our families and ourselves. Laying aside things that get in the way of our pursuit of God will allow God to speak into our lives much more. God is in control! We should not be casual – it is vital we hear Him and see Him in our lives. We need an awakening in ourselves, in our nation, in our churches, so the hearts of men and women are awakened to the reality of God and His love. Isaiah 60 speaks of days of great darkness but these announce days of great light…that break and penetrate darkness. Let us pray prayers of awakening, an awakening that comes from heaven. An awakening in the world must start from an awakening in the church. We long in this New Year 2021 to see moves of Gods Spirit that will draw the hearts of the lost back home. But we need this in our churches and ourselves first. We need to see a move of God and kingdom mindedness rising up in the courtyards of government and the nation. But first we need to shake off slumber and awaken to a new place of intimacy with God…..walking closely with God. Oh that the church would awaken to the purposes of God – the great commission. Our lives need to crave the intimacy of God and be busy with His purposes. Romans 13, verse 11 onwards speaks of the time we are in and waking from slumber…. (NIV) “And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armour of light. Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh”. Ephesians 5, verse 8 onwards encourages us regarding who we were and who we now are (NIV) “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. It is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light”. This talks about our intimacy with God and then in verse 14..” This is why it is said: “Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil”. Only a person who is awake can awaken another, so we need to commit to being a people who are fully awake with Him. Only the prince of peace, the touch of the Holy Spirit will awaken us. Intimacy with God will awaken us for His purpose. We pray “Lord in these next twenty one days come and lean over your bride the church and awaken her from her slumbers, give her a fresh touch of your Holy Spirit to stir and shake hearts and let us all rise from any sleeping to seek your face in true devotion”.

Carpe '21 | Andy Elmes | 27th December 2020

Andy Elmes • December 27, 2020 • Andy Elmes

The week Pastor Andy looks back at the year 2020 and rather more looks forwards into the year 2021. Covid has stolen much of what we came to know as Christmas but as the 25th December emerged we were left with Jesus. Nothing had affected the fact that The Father has given us His Son to bring us back to Himself. As we stand at the door of 2021 we step out of a very unusual 2020. Although life has been hideous in some ways, elsewhere the church has blossomed for example in the small groups and community work. But we can look into 2021 with hearts full of joy rather than disillusionment because Gods word still stands. His promises remain true. He has plans for us, the church and the nation. We need to be committed to these plans as God rebuilds in 2021. Andy spoke about how we need to be ready to seize the day or even seize the year (Carpe 2021) to make full use and enjoy the new season. In Philippians 3, verse 13, Paul speaks of his life and forgetting what lays behind and reaching forward for what is yet unknown. Andy speaks about how we also need to forget the negatives and disappointments of 2020 and be found reaching forward for the plan God has for us in 2021. In the next few days we need to be getting our hearts afresh for 2021 and for what God wants to do in our lives. In Jeremiah 21 it tells of the plans God has for us….to prosper us and plans of future and hope. The year 21 is often associated with getting keys to the door. In Matthew 16 verse 19 scripture speaks of The Lord promising us the keys of the Kingdom. Keys which can loose things and also bind things. Here, Jesus was speaking to His Church. Immediately before this Jesus speaks about building His church. During 2020 we rediscovered a fresh approach ot what the church really was, certainly not a building. God is standing ready to build His Church in 2021 with spiritual keys that have the power to bind evil and loose Heaven. Andy then spoke of the invitation for Prayer and Fasting starting day one of the New Year. A time to focus and pray for our nation, government, our church and be intentional not drifting as we commence 2021. Fasting takes prayer to a new level, it cannot be casual when we fast but intentional, releasing supernatural keys for supernatural breakthroughs.