A Word from Ian Shaw

Abraham Kuyper was a Dutch clergyman, author of over 200 books, journalist with over 20,000 articles, and prime minister of the Netherlands. He was known for speaking into the public square on a variety of theological and social justice issues, often campaigning for the rights of the working class and oppressed. You could almost think he was super human doing all these things. He was described as ‘the man with ten heads and a hundred arms’. This sounds scarily overwhelming. I cannot imagine he would have had time for TV or social media, if he were around today. He did have his detractors though, and I have heard that he could be aggravating. But he certainly got things done, and had a drive to honour Christ in all he did. He was imperfect, like all of us, yet he pointed people to God’s kingdom and the saving work of Christ.

Last week I shared the lyrics of a song, “We Seek Your Kingdom”, which speaks to our belief, as Christians, that we are to bring God’s kingdom into every sphere of life, into every square inch. Abraham Kuyper sought to transform, revive, and heal society from the injustices he saw in his country and time. He modelled his actions on the life of Christ, the perfect One, who brought to earth a new way of understanding people and leadership. Through Jesus, God gave up the security of heaven and came to earth to die a horrible death so that he could rescue us and provide a way for us to escape our own sinfulness. Jesus demonstrated care and concern for others and an attitude of service and sacrifice. Our country still values these traits, ushered in by Jesus at a time when leaders of the Greco-Roman world saw leadership as dominance, squashing the weak and getting the competitor out of the way. Humility did not exist in their actions and worldview. In sharp contrast, Jesus demonstrated servant leadership. You can read how He lived this out in the Bible.

Abraham Kuyper said that our faith is worthless unless we apply it to every square inch of our lives; actions not just words.  We must apply our faith in how we speak, in how we relate to others, in how we work, play and serve. May peace, truth and justice reign in our lives and be present wherever God has placed us. We thank God for the enabling message of the Gospel in our lives. May we be encouraged, with God’s help, to transform ourselves with repentance and then seek to transform the world in which we live.

He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8

Mrs Sue Huxley has been living God’s story in her life, including serving on the Kuyper Education Sub Committee of the Association, then as a Primary teacher and Executive member of staff. Since 1987, Mrs Huxley has faithfully served many generations of Kuyper families and now, she has announced her retirement at the end of this year. We are deeply saddened by the news, yet excited for her as she embarks on new challenges, potentially exploring more of this wonderful country with her husband in their caravan. I regularly sit in on the Kindy classes and watch Mrs Huxley teach. It is a joy to behold. Teaching children to read and write is a fundamental skill for our staff. It is wonderful to see the children begin to understand, and start their reading journey. Mrs Huxley will be leaving Kuyper as a teacher in her prime. From my observation, she has not slowed down in any way.

Mrs Huxley is and has been committed to teaching children for several decades and I am sure there are many great memories to reflect on. As the year concludes, there will be an opportunity for you to pass on your thanks for her life of service to this community.

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