Saturday, 31 May 2008
Friday, 30 May 2008
It was wonderful to see RFC hanging out with new people - Scott, Sitho & others spent most of the time playing basketball with youth. The graffiti wall, sumo wrestling and the DJ were a hit, as was the over stocked tuck shop!!!
Dan Head told something of his story - from a 12 year old on weed to a 25 year old heroin addict with 9 prison sentences finally yielding his life to Jesus.
Sitho followed this by asking the big question of life "Who are you following? because we are all following someone". 15 young people filled out forms asking to know more about the youth activities we run.
Tomorrow we are out again with face painting, ballons and basketball & football skills - lets see how God is going to use these activities!
Wednesday, 28 May 2008
Ahab answered, "Tell him: One who puts on his armour should not boast like one who takes it off." 2kings 20v11
In effect Ahab is saying "a sober assessment when readying for battle is prudent; you haven't beaten me yet, you've yet to do battle & return home safely".
A welcome proverb for us when people write us off; or when our own self confidence allows us to get ahead of ourselves...
Saturday, 24 May 2008
Friday, 23 May 2008
Thursday, 22 May 2008
- Tues 8-9pm prayer meeting at the church office.
- Wed 6-7am prayer meeting at church office.
- Thurs 9:30-4pm meet at church office then break into groups for social action / visiting homes.
- Fri 9:30-4pm meet at church office then break into groups for social action / visiting homes.
- Fri 8-10pm Youth Event at South Reading Community Centre.
- Sat 10 - 12noon Fun in the community.
- Sunday 10 - 12noon Guest meeting with Phil Moore
- Tues 8-10pm joint prayer meeting with South Reading Churches at JMA.
Wednesday, 21 May 2008
Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labour is not in vain.
Therefore my beloved breathren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord. 1Cor 15:58
Tuesday, 20 May 2008
Health Minister Dawn Primarolo insists there is no evidence requiring the abortion laws to be changed. She said the government wanted to protect the right of women to choose. The right of the 'unborn child' to life is apparently second to the mothers wishes.
As a nation we are rightly shocked by the brutality and lack of regard for life shown to immigrants in Johannesburg. Yet our government doesn't see the parallels of 'the sanctity of ALL human life' - be it at 12 weeks in a womb or a 32 year old citizen of Zimbabwe in Jo'burg.
All life is sacred, we are all image bearers of God. No-one has the right to violence over another, no-one has the right to take another's life.
Monday, 19 May 2008
From the pinnacle of Israel's glory to the death of a wayward king - a 29 year period all done in 20 minutes.
Life is short and we have precious little time to attempt great things for God. By God's grace I trust the account of the next 29 years of my life will take longer to read than a leisurely 20 minutes at the end a day ...
Saturday, 17 May 2008
Thursday, 15 May 2008
This was one of the recurring themes of the two days, the presence of God: desiring His presence, expecting it, enjoying it and bringing it. And the Spirit moved wonderfully.
We spent time praying for the urban poor. We prayed for overseas workers and for church planting teams. We prayed for the UK abortions laws, the young people and the doubling of newfrontiers churches.
Terry gave some superb teaching on restoring the church. We are to diligently attempt to restore the church to her NT reality. The church should be built on a foundation of grace not law; should value and make room for the presence of God; worship should make space for the gifts of the Spirit. Church should have a sense of fellowship, partnership, deep involvement; should be theologically rooted; and the church is the centre of the purposes of God.
It was a wonderful two days ... I can't wait until the Brighton leadership conference in July!
And last night we were all together again and laughed at Jock's stories ... and thanked him for picking up the tab for the meal. I like meeting up with old friends.
Tuesday, 13 May 2008
Now, my head knows it was good for me. I am sure I had a more beneficial swim as a result. But being out of my comfort zone is not pleasant and you don't go home in quite the same frame of mind.
Life is like that - we know it is good to raise our game it just so much more comfortable where we are.
Monday, 12 May 2008
On Saturday afternoon the girls organised themselves a time together which, by all accounts, was a raging success.
The personal stories of Nicola, Georgie, Barbie & Kerry not only reflected the grace of God but also showed what tenacious faith looks like.
Karena's seminar on prophecy and Lucy's on studying the bible bore fruit at the Sunday morning meeting and will continue to do so.
I am told that, as ever, the tables looked beautiful - fresh flowers and table clothes. Apparently they ordered just the right amount of Chinese takeaway and the scones for the cream tea were perfect. (They at least were baked by a guy!)
All in all, they have once again set the pace in encouraging community & godliness. We guys have some stuff to learn.
Friday, 9 May 2008
Tomorrow morning at ACTS14 leadership school Andrew Wilson is speaking. He was fantastic at the last session - the way he brought alive Isaiah 6 was inspiring.
In the afternoon, the girls are meeting at the offices for a cream tea, various seminars (prophecy, how to get more from the bible), testimonies and then a Chinese meal together.
On Sunday we are continuing our series on Jesus - this time looking at Him as our Shepherd (John 10:11-18). I shall be preaching and I would really value your prayers.
Finally, the church prayer meeting is on Sunday night. We need to keep praying that people will get saved ... only two people this year (as far as we know) have become a Christan through our church!
Thursday, 8 May 2008
noun: a temporary stay i.e during his sojourn in Paris.
verb: to stay for a time in a place; live temporarily: to sojourn on the Riviera for two months.
It has the sense of being away from home, living temporarily, not really fitting in, on a journey. The NIV bible tends to use the word 'alien', 'stranger', the ESV bible 'sojourner', 'exile'.
Heb 11:13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.
We are not supposed to be surprised when our value systems don't fit our current culture. In a very real way, we are supposed to think of ourselves as journeying citizens from another kingdom.
Food for thought for those of us who like to put down roots, to get established and fit in. We will never really be at home this side of death - we are just staying for a short time. Our true home is in the age to come.
Wednesday, 7 May 2008
- Matt Lindland - 2000 Olympic silver medalist in wrestling; top-ranked middleweight mixed martial arts fighter
- Brandon Neal: President, Tooth & Nail records
- Wayne Grudem: Research professor, Phoenix seminary
- Church Colson: Founder, Prison Fellowship
'Strengthening yourself in the LORD' is far easier to 'read' than it is to 'do'. Pressing into God when every sinew in your body is screaming out to hide / run / flee / panic / escape is no easy thing. Being able to 'strengthen yourself in the LORD' when your world is messed up, is an activity worth cultivating. For me it involves enforced sung worship, enforced scripture reading and enforced prayer. It often starts in the enforced, but it regularly finishes in the embrace of God's grace. Jesus was the master in this activity, and He has not left us as orphans.
When I try to strenghten myself in the LORD, I often find God is quick to rush in. To be honest he rarely changes my circumstances but He does strengthen me to endure. God is good. God is the gospel.
Tuesday, 6 May 2008
The race was based around Fleet (where I preached at the newfrontiers church recently) which is a lovely rural town in northern Hampshire. The 400m swim was indoors, followed by 20km bike ride on mainly quiet country roads. However this was followed by a gruelling, water logged, mud-tastic, cross country 5km run.
That said, I had a good race, coming in 67th out of 409 finishers. Both Craig and Kirk put in good performances but weren't quite on there usual best. To be honest all our eyes are fixed on the Windsor race in 6 weeks time, so at best Hart was a training exercise.
It was good to see some of the guys from the club there ... I am still getting to know them, and some of them are hard core! All I need now is for my blisters to heal, then I am back to some serious run training.
Friday, 2 May 2008
Throughout Friday morning previous 'Chocolate Friday' purchases are first reviewed, then graded, resulting in a clutch of chocolate options that are purchased. Today's selections were:
- Scott - Double Decker
- Nicola - Guylian
- Rachel - Mars bar
- Karen - Twix
- Ed - Yorkie
- Sean - Double Decker
Chocolate Friday's pinacle is 3pm when everything stops - even sermon prep - for tea and chocolate in my study (the study as the venue is a recent amendment). If you are ever around on a Friday, choose your chocolate, place your order, and head on down to the church office for 3pm...