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Passing the baton editorial 1

I’m amazed by the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. None of those ancient imperfect heroes would get a Blue Card let alone Father of the Year.

Yet the great ‘I Am’ identifies himself as their God and ultimately they’re the forefathers of the Uniting Church. I’m also amazed that he’s the God of my parents, and now my daughters.

Our heritage of faith goes all the way back to a night when God called Abram out of his tent, showed him the stars and made a promise that cannot be broken, ever.

I remember the stars above the school building in Greenvale one evening in 1975. I don’t recall exactly what Dad said, but the penny dropped and I became one of those promised people.

When they asked me to put my trust in Jesus, these believers were asking me to trust them, trust their honesty as they shared their own warts-and-all experience of God.

Bruce and Jenny Dobbin, Ron Unwin, Robyn Taylor, Eric Woodrow, David and Sue Fanning, the Wilmos, Kayleen Brown, Barry Allen, John Palmer and so many others, like the grains of sand.

Before a recent speaking appointment I was introduced to a young technician, Ezra Henderson. Later someone asked me if he seemed familiar. “That’s John’s boy.”

‘Jungle’ John Henderson was a bearded bare-foot bushman who worked as the groundsman and maintenance guy at the Magnetic Island youth camp.

John could repair anything, including the Jesus Bus, listen to anyone and trust God with everything. He lived his faith, shared his own story. John walked hundreds of young people to the door of the Kingdom and suggested we knock.