The meaning of Australia Day seems to vary significantly from person to person. For some there are the Aussie values of mateship, and … well, mateship is the main one, isn’t it? I sometimes wonder whether there is a bit too much self-congratulation in this approach to Australia Day. Mateship is a great value, but I’m not sure if we are better at it than anyone else. On the other hand, for some Australia Day should be painted negatively as an invasion day. For still others, it’s simply an extra day off for a long barbeque or day at the beach. In a sense I think this third approach – just have a good time and don’t overthink it – is the most Australian of all.
All three of these Australia Days can easily miss the point which, from a Christian viewpoint, should be made of our national day. Surely any national day must be an opportunity to acknowledge God’s goodness to us in allocating to us this amazingly beautiful, diverse, well-resourced land to live in. With God we are sojourners, and tenants in his property. But as Australians he has blessed us with a plum location!
More than half of Australia still identify as Christian, according to the 2016 census, yet how many of these will take even a moment this Australia Day to offer their thanks to God for the gift of our “wide brown land”?
In brief, next week is our Vision Sunday (in which we will commission people for ministry in various roles in 2019), Sunday School returns, and we hold our first Family Service for the year with a sausage sizzle. Looking forward to seeing you there.