Tuesday, 28 February 2012

The Gathering

On 1st April the Reading Half marathon will snake it way through our town creating the now familiar challenge of getting to Reading Girls' School for 10am. For the last decade we have always managed to hold our meeting but this year we thought we would do something different. 

The plan is to cheer on the runners from outside the church offices on London St in the morning (more on this in another blog). In the afternoon gather the South Reading and Town Centre congregations together. 

The meeting will start at 4pm on 1st April at Reading Girls' School (i.e. no morning meeting) and finish around 5:30. Unfortunately, in order to make space for everyone, the children will have to go straight out to their groups from the start.

At this gathering, we plan to launch our new downloadable Worship EP (The band are recording it live this weekend), preview our new 'RFC Vision' video and hear testimonies about what God has been doing amongst both congregations.

Please put this date in your phone, tablet, PDA or diary and let's celebrate together.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Gecko Collective - the Winter Sessions

The second instalment by our RFC friends at Gecko Collective ...

Friday, 17 February 2012

The Problem with Leaders

On Sunday I shall be speaking on the tension of following leaders who are being used by God yet their mistakes having dire consequences on those who trust them. 
It would be really helpful if you could read Judges 11 before Sunday and pray for me as I continue to prepare ...

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Dad & lad in the Dales

Joshua & I are spending a few days together in the Yorkshire Dales; we are staying with old friends of mine and venturing out for snowy walks in the beautiful countryside.

Today's walk included an epic icy scramble up onto Ingleborough ridge, i was really pleased Liz wasn't there to see it.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Creating Better Futures

Creating Better Futures, which is led by Chris & Becca Poston and Mike & Dorothy Dix is being launched this Saturday at the church offices @ 3pm.

This is a non-profit organisation helping orphaned and vulnerable children through a long term commitment to support their education and welfare.

They shall be talking through their aims and ethos and it will be a great oppurtunity to find out more about their plans. We hope to visit the orphanage they support during the RFC mission trip to Zimbabwe later this year.

Follow the link here to see their website.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

The Fat King is Dead

Lifegroup Notes on my message last Sunday: 

We all known what is it to make progress in life, to know breakthrough in our thinking or behavior. Yet somehow, over time, through our choices and circumstances, our gains can get whittled away. And then a day comes when we realize that we are back where we started, only its now much worse, we have no appetite or faith for change.

Read Judges 3:12-30 The Israelites had known incredible military success and were established in the good land … but sadly grew complacent, hardening their hearts towards their God. So the LORD strengthened a foreign King, Eglon, who built a summer palace in Jericho. This Fat King mocked God by rebuilding there (Josh6v26) and extracted tribute from God’s people. The Jews finally came to their senses after 18 years and cried out to God. He sent them a deliverer, Ehud, who killed the Fat King and sounded the trumpet to rally the people. They went on to defeat & subdue their enemies, but it was a partial deliverance, only 80 years. 

All this pointed to one who is superior to Ehud ... when Jesus died & rose from the grave, he sounded a clear & loud trumpet call to all who would listen. At Calvary, Jesus defeated the ultimate ‘Fat Kings’ of Sin & Satan & Death and it was a complete deliverance, once for all time. His resurrection was the loud trumpet call proclaiming his very great victory; we now rally to Him, and He leads us out to firmly establish God’s kingdom.  

Fat Kings no longer have dominion over us, it was for freedom that Christ has set us free (Eph 5v1). We don’t get to be Ehud; We don’t get to be Jesus; We get to be us, the people of God who need & have a great savior who kills Fat Kings. We can know hope, freedom, liberty and God’s delight for us, because Jesus killed the Fat King on our behalf. 

Can you imagine what it would be like to regain an appetite for change & victory in certain areas of your life? It all starts with crying out to God and rallying to the finished work of the cross. Jesus has won it for us and given the Holy Spirit to empower & encourage us to life change for the glory of God. 

Suggested questions for discussion: What caught your attention from the baptism stories on Sunday? What voices or circumstances in your life seem to mock what God has said? Where do you need to know the freedom & liberty that Jesus has won for you? What do you need to do this week to ‘capture the fords and rout the troops of the dead Fat King’?

Monday, 6 February 2012

A happy Monday

the Cunning Man with Liz ...

Friday, 3 February 2012

2yrs Old & Baptisms

This Sunday we are baptising 'inside' at both our morning & evening congregations - the very first time indoors at our normal venues! Scott has been busy ...

In the evening we shall also be celebrating the second anniversary of starting the evening congregation ... obviously there will be lots of birthday cake! 

Do come along and join in the celebrations. 

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Cheering on church planters

One of the things I enjoy about being part of newfrontiers is that I meet men & woman who feel called to start churches. Liz & I really 'get' that desire and we want to cheer them on with all our might. 

On Sunday, family Green spent the day with Howard & Naze Kellett; it was so exciting to meet the faith filled community that are now gathering around them.

Yesterday I had a long chat with Dave Henson in St Petersburg; I am so stirred by his & Hanna's faith & joy as they plant Hope Church in challenging circumstances. 

This Saturday Liz and I are spending the day with Colin & Ruth who are planting in Slough, Mark & Abi in Haringey, Howard & Naze in Cheltenham and Robin & Hanna in Swansea.  Their stories & faith will leave a huge deposit in Liz and I ... its just how days like that work. 

Zdenko & Ivana, who are planting in Varazdin, Croatia, won't be there on Saturday, but we hope to fly them in to hear Terry Virgo when he is with us in March.

Please do pray for these couples right now ... reread their names and lift them up to our Father in Heaven; there are unique challenges in church planting.