Share the vision
Communicate the stories
Connect the leaders
From the National Commissioner – Marian Ashford
Our world is full of ways to connect…old-fashioned snail mail, email, friendships, twitter, phone calls, Facebook, talking, to name only a few; but there is one connection more important than all the rest. Guess what comes next?
Luke 24:32 – “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the scriptures?” – Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we all connected to God like that! To be connected to God’s heart will give you the passion and enthusiasm to do whatever He wants you to do on His mission.
Matthew 19: 26 –With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.
As we try and live out our faith, we will have lots of impossible challenges to face. But if we’re trying to live out our faith without Christ as the centre, it will be hopelessly impossible. Any attempt to live as a Christian without God isn’t just futile; it’s pathetic – not to mention foolish.
Imagine you’re pretty good at basketball and your dream is to get really good. Yet for some reason you try to do this from your bedroom. Maybe you play basketball via computer games or you have and old nerf basketball with a hoop attached to your bedroom door and you spend hours shooting baskets, but your game’s not getting any better. Then imagine (lots of imagination) that your last name is Jordan and your dad’s name is Michael. He just happens to be a retired NBA star who’s been waiting to play some one on one with you, but you’ve been too busy “practicing” in your room to go downstairs to the big indoor court with real hoops and shoot with your dad. Get the picture?
That’s kind of how silly it would be for us to try to do our own Christian walk without God’s help. It is humanly impossible, but with God all things are possible. He’s right there, always ready and waiting to help you with your game.
So when we get discouraged when something feels impossible, let’s simply go to God and ask for help. All things are possible with Him!*
Imagine, if you will, a GBA that is full of leaders who are connected to God and know that they are being taught and nurtured by Him. It’s mind blowing what God could achieve through us!
If you have been struggling lately, talk to God and ask Him to fire you up again. Then find a friend to encourage you as well.
Reference: * Devotions for Real Life by Melody Carson
From the National Chaplain – Natalie Koutsos
Throughout many generations of GB we have been teaching our girls to “Seek, Serve and Follow Christ.” The Crest has been the tool to teach the girls what it means to do just that.
A lamp; a crown; a torch; but “in the centre is a Cross, the symbol of Christ and his Church.”
Looking at the ministry and mission of GB and reflecting on God’s word, do we build our life and leadership with Christ as the centre?
Living a Christ centred life requires that we place him as Lord over all, in all and through all. It is knowing the salvation that we have received, and having this as our foundational motive for living. This is the key to transformational life and is vital for leadership in ministry. Can we say that it is the help of the Lord Jesus Christ that will be our deliverance? That we will not be ashamed, but that with full courage Christ will be honoured in our lives and leadership?
You see, for us to live is to die to self; for us to live is to live Christ centred lives. To die is to gain. We as leaders need to keep this as the centre of our lives as we lead girls to the understanding of Christ. For us, personally, and as GBA, to be moving into the future God has for us, we need to be dying to self, dying to our motives, dying to our expectations, dying to how we run programs, dying to how we view GB and what we want for the future. You see, we need to have Christ as the centre of all we do in leading through GB. It is not about the programs, structure, uniforms or image but it’s about the gospel centred ministry in which Christ is the centre. How can we as GB truly live and lead in the ways of the Lord for eternal transformation of lives around us?
For I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. – Philippians 1:19-21
From the Board
“In the centre a cross a symbol of Christ and His church…”
And so starts the poem that explains our crest, a visual reminder of our desire to have Christ at the centre of our lives and of Girls’ Brigade.
The cross reminds us that because of Christ’s death and resurrection we have a hope for the future, and it is this hope we share each week with the girls in our care.
May each one of us keep Christ central in all we do .. in our lives, on each company night, at each meeting, at our leader development events and as we mentor the next generation.
John 15:5 I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
From South Australia
This year after hearing about Esteem Designz at National Conference in New South Wales, it was decided that we would run Esteem Designz at senior camp, on the understanding that we would encourage all seniors to attend camp and then to finish the program back at Company so the girls could finish the whole program. The girls ABSOLUTELY loved doing Esteem Designz, learnt a great deal and had a great time. This was reflected in the comments we received from the girls.
I feel more confident with myself. I feel a bit happier.
I feel like I can love myself and believe in myself.
It helped me feel closer to the other girls.
It encouraged me to do great things!
That it doesn’t matter how you look or what you do God loves you.
That everybody is just as special as each other.
That we are all special and are here for a reason.
To love myself, God loves us.
To not put yourself down and to always love God for He will love us whoever we are.
It helps you know who God is and it is fun to do.
There are great fun activities- how special it is.
It’s a fun way of learning about God.
Helps you grow in faith.
It is crafty and a fun way to learn about yourself and God.
I always think that if a girl/s ask to continue a program after a weekend away that you as a leader are on a good thing.
From Western Australia – Bring our girls home!
On the night of 14–15 April 2014, a group of militants attacked the Government Girls’ Secondary School in Chibok, Nigeria. They broke into the school, pretending to be guards, telling the girls to get out and come with them. A large number of students were taken away in trucks, possibly into the Konduga area of the Sambisa Forest where Boko Haram were known to have fortiﬁed camps. Six of those girls taken are from Girls’ Brigades. Houses in Chibok were also burned down in the incident. The school had been closed for four weeks prior to the attack due to the deteriorating security situation, but students from multiple schools had been called in to take ﬁnal exams in physics. It is believed that Boko Haram (a terrorist organisation) has taken the girls to sell them, use them as slaves and more.
The Australian Government has oﬀered to help them search for the girls, but six Girls’ Brigaders from Bull Creek 21st Perth (Cayley Adams, Belinda Lewis, Caitlin Tang, Phoebe Wardell-Johnson and Amy Lewis) said “NO! WE CAN DO IT OURSELVES!!” They went to see Ms Julie Bishop is the Australian Foreign Minister and the federal electorate member for Curtin in Western Australia at her oﬃce in Subiaco. They went to see her to give her hundreds of cards made by girls from Girls Brigade around WA to encourage her to do what the Government could to help rescue those 216 Nigerian girls. The Government believe they have tracked down the region where the girls are but they are still not 100% sure. We need our sisters in Christ to come back to their families.
Written by: Phoebe Wardell-Johnson (11yo) Senior