Wednesday, 10 October 2012


Imagine having a nickname that identifies who you really are.
Bible and civics teacher Neale Robb told students at today's chapel that his childhood nicknames were "Shorty," "Junior," "Alf" and "Red."
But Robb also told students about a Bible character named Joseph, who ended up with a nickname that identified the kind of person he was.
Joseph was a giving man, who sacrificed his possessions to serve others, said Robb. (Acts 4: 36, 37)
He was also willing to take risks for an outsider who could have hurt him badly. (Acts 9:26,27)
And he was an encourager, who didn't give up on someone just because he had failed once. (Acts 15: 36-40).
That's why Joseph became known as Barnabas, which means "encourager," Robb said.
"He was willing to sacrifice for others, he was willing to befriend the stranger and the outcast," Robb said. "And he was willing to give someone a second chance."
Robb said Barnabas exemplifies this year's student council theme -- Faith in Action -- and he encouraged students to put their faith into action too.
He said they can give money to good causes or they can give their time "to help someone who doesn't seem to have a lot of friends, or who is a bit of an outsider.
"Invite them to eat with you, to join your group, or stop and talk with them for a while," he said. Those kinds of actions will also exemplify this year's spiritual life theme: build up the body.
"Let me challenge each of us to be like Barnabas, the encourager," Robb said.
"Wouldn't it be good to have a nickname like that?"
Robb concluded his message with prayer: "Open our hearts and eyes to see those around us who might need a little encouragement."
Today's chapel also featured praise and worship led by one of the student praise teams.
We sang "Blessed Be Your Name," "Our God," and "I Will Follow."


"It is quite a joy for me to come to chapel each week and be led in worship by one of our student praise teams," said Robb.


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