Hi I’m James and I believe the Gospel of Jesus is GOOD NEWS.
Unfortunately, it hasn’t always been communicated that way. And that really bothers me.
You see, my experience of God has always been good. I have known God was for me, and for all of the human race since I was young. When I was seven years old my family moved to Bangladesh where I saw the devastation of extreme poverty. But amongst all the darkness I saw life. I saw a God that saw it all, cared for all, and was actively involved in doing something about it. I saw that no situation was too bad, and no person was too far gone to be saved. To put it simply, I realised nothing was impossible for the God of love – Jesus.
Although I knew God loved and cared about everyone from my experience, my theology had a big fat “but” thrown in there. He loves us all but… You may have heard some of these buts, and you or your friends and family may have even been excluded by some of these.
However, over the past couple of years my theology has caught up to my experience of God. Before you start casting stones at me, no, I haven’t “gone liberal” – rather I have gone “Christ centred.”
Jesus said that if you have seen Him, you have seen the Father. The Apostle Paul said that Jesus is the image of the invisible God. The author of Hebrews says Jesus is the exact representation of God. To put it simply,
God looks like Jesus. God has always looked like Jesus, and always will look like Jesus. Jesus is God.
And this my friends is good news. It’s good news because Jesus shows us what a life of love looks like. Jesus laid down His life so that others may live. Although He was God, He did not come and lord it over people, rather He came and served, He sat with the oppressed, He welcomed the outcast, He loved those religion had tried to shame. He was inclusive of all people. He used His power to heal the sick and cast out demonic spirits. He did not come to coerce people to follow Him, rather He invited people into a friendship.
His teachings are revolutionary too, His life is exemplary, and in His death He shows us the heart of God. Death did not defeat Him or stop Him, as He rose from the dead three days later and promises the same for you and I. He showed that power is in weakness, that we are blessed when we suffer, and that it is never ok to kill, but it is ok to die for a cause. His mission to see Heaven invade this Earth is already happening and is exciting to be part of.
So here at “Happy Saved Free” I’ll be posting Jesus Centred, Happy Theology content! I’ll be posting thoughts and stories about the Kingdom of God that is always advancing, and will invite you to not only hear about it, but to experience it for yourself. Nothing would make me happier than for you to experience this good news I am talking about, decide to follow Jesus, then share it all with those whom you love.
You may not agree with everything I say, and that’s fine! I highly doubt any of us have it all “right”. But I do ask that you think through what I’m saying before dismissing it – and most of all, weight it against what is revealed in Jesus Christ.
Finally, Jesus said that He came to give us life and life in all it’s fullness – or as I like to say, a life that is happy, saved and free.
Thanks for reading this, and I hope to see your comments.
Other bits about me:
- I’m happily married to Sarah and we have three gorgeous and cheeky kids
- I was a missionary kid growing up in Bangladesh and Barbados
- I did my Bachelor in Theology over a cross of denominational colleges including Salvation Army, Baptist, Church of Christ, and Anglican.
- I was ordained as a Salvation Army Officer (Pastor/Evangelist)
- I’ve served as a short-medium term missionary in Southern Africa
- I love teaching on encountering God, healing, signs and wonders, prophecy and how to lead others in these encounters
- I’m an elder at Friends First Church – a great community I’d love to invite you into if you’re looking!
- I’m the Area/State Manager for Compassion in Victoria and Tasmania
- I love sport – my passion of late has been completing Ironman 70.3 events! I love the mental challenge of endurance races.
- When I truly decided to follow Jesus, He filled my heart with peace, purpose and passion and I have never been the same since then!