Gethsemané…when you are there!

Senior Pastor Braam Botha Communique
Table of Contents

Gethsemané…when you are there!

Wednesday 20th March 2024

Times of intense stress and adversity often serve as crucibles for personal growth and breakthroughs. One poignant example of finding strength amidst overwhelming pressure is exemplified in Jesus’ prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane. By examining this pivotal moment in Jesus’ life, we can glean valuable insights into how moments of intense stress can lead to significant breakthroughs.

The Context of Gethsemane:

The Garden of Gethsemane serves as the setting for one of the most profound moments in Jesus’ ministry. Facing imminent arrest, trial, betrayal, isolation, and crucifixion, Jesus retreats to pray, grappling with the weight of the suffering that lies ahead. The intensity of this moment is palpable as Jesus expresses his anguish and surrender to God’s will.

Embracing Vulnerability:

 In his prayer, Jesus reveals his vulnerability and humanity, acknowledging the task’s enormity. He cries out, 

“My Father, if possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” 

Matthew 26:39, NIV 

Jesus’ willingness to express his distress and surrender to God’s plan exemplifies the power of vulnerability in times of stress. We are thankful that He surrendered to the Father’s will…that we may be the beneficiaries!

‘”He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.” ‘

1 Peter 2:24 NIV

Finding Strength in Surrender: 

Despite the intensity of his anguish, Jesus models profound trust and surrender to God’s will. He demonstrates that true strength is found not in self-reliance or avoidance of pain but in humble submission to God’s purposes. Jesus’ prayer in Gethsemane teaches us the importance of relinquishing control and placing our trust in God, even in the face of uncertainty and suffering.

‘But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness. And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you. ‘

Romans 8:10-11NIV

Discovering Purpose in Adversity: 

Jesus confronts the reality of his impending suffering and death through his prayer in Gethsemane. Yet, amid this anguish, Jesus finds clarity of purpose and resolve. He recognizes that his suffering will ultimately lead to the redemption of humanity, declaring,

 “Yet not as I will, but as you will.” 

Matthew 26:39, NIV

Jesus’ prayer teaches us that times of intense stress can lead to breakthroughs when we align ourselves with a greater purpose and mission.

The Power of Resilience:

Despite his distress, Jesus emerges from Gethsemane strengthened and resolute. His prayer empowers him to face the trials ahead with courage and perseverance. Jesus’ example reminds us that times of intense stress can catalyse resilience and growth, enabling us to overcome obstacles and achieve breakthroughs we never thought possible.

‘Rise! Let us go!”

Matthew 26:46a NIV

Jesus’ prayer in Gethsemane offers insights into how intense stress can lead to significant breakthroughs. By embracing vulnerability, finding strength in surrender, discovering purpose in adversity, and cultivating resilience, we can navigate life’s challenges with grace and courage. Like Jesus, may we draw strength from our greatest stress, trusting in God’s faithfulness to lead us to breakthroughs that transform our lives and the world around us.

Partners Gathering | Cancelled

In an effort to make efficient use of Partners’ time, the Board of Elders have decided to cancel the Partners’ Gathering on Sunday, 24th March 2024. The Board will be sending an email update so please watch your inbox.

Fuse Youth | Friday 22nd March | 7:00 pm

This is our FINAL NIGHT of term 1 and we are finishing off our F.U.S.E “Existence” series. We will have someone share a powerful message with us, worship, have good chats and more! It will be a night not to miss!! 7-9.30pm, $5.

Writers Group | Saturday 23rd March | 9:00 am

Aspiring writers, are you looking for a creative outlet to showcase your writing talents and connect with fellow literary enthusiasts? We are thrilled to invite you to join our Writers Group, where your words will come to life in a community of like-minded individuals.

Whether you write poetry, short stories, essays, or anything in between, we welcome all writing styles and genres. So come join us and ignite your passion for writing! Together, we will inspire each other to reach new heights and unlock our full potential as writers. Don’t miss out on this incredible opportunity to be a part of something truly special.

Join us today and let your creativity soar!

Sunday Service | 24th March | 10:00 am

We continue the series “Our Gain from Pain” that will lead us into Easter. In this series we look at what Jesus taught us about suffering and how God can use our own pain for good. 

We will also look at how we should be praying during painful seasons and how we can use our own experience of suffering for the benefit of others.

Kids Church | Sunday 24th March | 10:00 am

This week at Kids Church…

2 to 4-year-olds | The Crowds Welcome Jesus – Palm Sunday | Matthew 21:1-11,15-16
5 to 12-year-olds | Jesus came to be our Saviour (Palm Sunday) | Matthew 21:1-11

Onsite check-in opens at 9:45am and closes at 10:15am. Kids Church finishes at 11:30am.

Room Allocations for 2024
Wonderkids Room – 2 year olds and Kinder 3’s (all 2 year olds are most welcome to be registered after their 2nd birthday). 🙂 
FLC Room 5 – Kinder 4’s and Preps born AFTER 1st July 2018
FLC Room 6 – Grade 1’s and Preps born BEFORE 30th June 2018
FLC Room 1 – Grades 2, 3 and 4
The Youth Shed – Grades 5 & 6 

Kids Church is seeking more volunteers to support the dual service sessions. Could you come and serve in Kids Church for just one service every three weeks? If you can help us out, please complete the Kids Ministry Volunteer Application Form by clicking the link. Contact Glennie for more information. Email: [email protected].

Men's Prayer Group | Sunday 24th March | 5:45 pm

The Men’s Prayer Group is a group of men who regularly meet to pray together. James 5:16 – speaks about the effect of fervent prayer and how it achieves great things! Come along and enjoy fellowship, worship, and prayer as men of faith gather to seek God for mighty breakthroughs.

Boys Brigade | Monday 25th March | 6:00 pm

For over 20 years, the Boys’ Brigade has advanced Christ’s Kingdom among boys. We provide a Christian community that supports boys and young men and assists in their Christian growth, physical development, and leadership training while teaching life skills. Come along and be part of the action!

ANCHORS | Grades 1 & 2: 6pm – 7:15pm
JUNIORS | Grades 3 – 6: 7pm – 8:30pm
SENIORS | Grades 7 to 18 years old: 7pm – 9.15pm

Mental Health Support Gathering | Tuesday 26th March | 7:30 pm

Mental Health Support Gatherings cater for people who may benefit from mental health support. This may be personally or to assist a friend, family member or carer. This is a safe place to be heard and to share life’s challenges, make friendships and have hope restored. Remember, you are not alone.

In addition, the Gatherings also provide tools to assist people in dealing with life challenges and, on occasion, have specialist speakers addressing relevant topics. The Mental Health Support Gatherings are held on Tuesdays fortnightly during the School Terms from 7:30pm to 9:30pm. If you’re interested in coming along please click the ‘Book Now’ link below and choose: Special Interest Group: Mental Health Support Gatherings.  For more information please contact the Church Office 03 9702 1011. The Mental Health Support Gatherings are a ministry of the Berwick Church of Christ.

Seniors Ministry | Friendship Group | Wednesday 27th March | 1:30 pm

Let’s enjoy fellowship together, as we share around the communion table in honour and remembrance of our Lord Jesus. Pastor Michael will bring the Easter message.

Good Friday Service | 29th March | 9:00 am

Our special Good Friday service will be a time of reflection, communion, and worship, focused around the powerful sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ when He paid the penalty for our sins by suffering and dying on the cross. 
Please note, Kids Church is on term break and will return Sunday 14th April.

Good Friday Berwick Church of Christ
Easter Sunday Service | 31st March | 9:00 am & 11:00 am

On Easter Sunday, we will celebrate the triumph of Christ’ resurrected life which has empowered us to live a live of victory. This will be the concluding message in the “Our Gain from Pain” series where we will focus on how God can help us to help others through our own experiences of victory over pain and suffering. Please note that there will be two services on this day at 9 am and at 11 am.
Please note, Kids Church is on term break and will return Sunday 14th April.

Easter Sunday Berwick Church of Christ 2024
Baptism Class | Monday 15th April | 7:00 pm

Baptism is the complete immersion into water of those who have confessed their faith in Jesus Christ as God’s Son and their Saviour.

However, it is more than just immersion in water. It has a number of significant meanings. Complete the expression of interest form if you want to be contacted about attending the Baptism Class.

Growing To Maturity (GTM 1) Course | Commencing Tuesday 16th April | 7:00 pm

GTM is the ideal follow-on course to ‘Search To Find’ or ‘Alpha”. It is the perfect next step for those who:

  • Are hungry to grow in their relationship with God
  • Want their faith to move from head knowledge to life experience
  • Desire to learn how to live out the Christian life in a practical way

Growing To Maturity (GTM) is a unique discipleship course that combines the use of:

  • Participant workbooks
  • DVD’s
  • Weekly inspiring audio talks
  • Group discussion and sharing
  • Special weekends
  • Personal challenges
Alpha Course | Commencing Wednesday 17th April | 7:00 pm

Alpha is a series of interactive sessions that create a safe and honest space, where people can explore life, faith and meaning.
Enjoy a meal with others, watch an Alpha Talk video and have an open discussion in a friendly and non-judgemental environment.

Connecting with others is important; friends gather around the kitchen table, meeting for coffee or catching up online. It’s no different at Alpha.  All sessions start with a time to connect, relax and build friendships – whether in person or virtually.

The Alpha talks are designed to engage and inspire conversation. Each video talk is around thirty minutes long and explores important issues around faith and the basics of Christianity.
We address questions such as; 

  • “Who is Jesus?”
  • “How can we have faith?”
  • “Why and how do I pray?”
  • “How does God guide us?”

One of the most important parts of any Alpha Course is sharing thoughts and ideas in small groups. There’s no obligation to say anything, and there’s nothing you can’t share (seriously). It’s an opportunity to hear from others and contribute your own perspective in an honest, friendly, and respectful environment.

Alpha 8 Week Marriage Course | Commencing Wednesday 17th April | 7:00 pm

The 8 week Marriage Course is for married couples who are seeking to strengthen their relationship. Some married couples attend the course to intentionally invest in their relationship, others are looking to address more specific challenges. Either way, the course offers essential tools and practical ideas to help you build a relationship that lasts a lifetime.

The 8 week Marriage Course is based on Christian principles but designed for all married couples with or without a church background.  The course will help you to:

  • Understand each others needs
  • Communicate more effectively
  • Grow closer by learning methods to resolve conflict
  • Recover from the ways you may have hurt each other
  • Recognise how your upbringing affects your relationship
  • Improve relationships with parents and in-laws
  • Develop greater sexual intimacy
  • Discover each others “love language” and much, much more….
Growing To Maturity (GTM 2) Course | Commencing Tuesday 23rd April | 7:00 pm

GTM 2 is aimed at developing deeper levels of intimacy and obedience to Christ and is an option for further growth for those who have completed GTM 1.

Growing To Maturity (GTM) is a unique discipleship course that combines the use of:

  • Participant App
  • Videos
  • Weekly inspiring audio talks
  • Group discussion and sharing
  • Special weekends
  • Personal challenges
Growing To Maturity (GTM 3) Course | Commencing Tuesday 23rd April | 7:00 pm

GTM 3 is aimed at developing deeper levels of intimacy and obedience to Christ and is an option for further growth for those who have completed GTM 1 and GTM 2. GTM 3 also includes a powerful weekend retreat with God!

Growing To Maturity (GTM) is a unique discipleship course that combines the use of:

  • Participant App
  • Videos
  • Weekly inspiring audio talks
  • Group discussion and sharing
  • Special weekends
  • Personal challenges

Thank you for being His Presence in Every Place!


Senior Pastor