Decent amounts of reading make for a great holiday tradition for me. Here's what I've read recently.... and here's the headlines if they're of interest to you?! Yes some of you have asked, so here's the titles, how I rated it out of 5, a simple one sentence summary and a favourite sentence quote. Just a takeaway... Sandcastle Kings, Rich Wilkerson Jr 2.5* A surprising rummage in Luke 7 around longings, lack and the lordship of Jesus Christ. p45 "In scripture two things amaze Jesus. Great faith and lack of faith. When Jesus looks at your life, what does he [...]
Today #snowstoppedplay and it was a little bit gutting to have weather affect our last full Sunday at Emmanuel. Some great preaching ideas were on the slate, and lots of you asked,...so here's my full notes and slides. The Apostle Paul's awesome finish and motivation for Timothy was what I sought to work with this morning - life and death, meaning and calling, faith and reward impacted me in a whole new way. Here's my my preaching notes, and my slides for this. Tonight I'd have been sharing the preaching with Kathryn from Philippians 3, Paul's searing focus on one thing, and [...]
It's a bittersweet day as this morning we announced news that I've been offered, and accepted the invitation to serve as the next Vicar of Swanley and Hextable in Rochester Diocese. This will mean a move for us, leaving the wonderful people of Emmanuel Church, Northwood and the wider community here, to lead and serve in mission and discipleship there. Just as God very graciously guided us purposefully to Emmanuel in 2014, so we trust His hand in this detail. It is a bittersweet announcement. Leaving Emmanuel and the wider community will be painful yet the season and circumstances invite [...]
"Jesus said you are to love one another as I have loved you, a love that will possibly lead to the bloody, anguish gift of yourself, a love that forgives seven times seven, that keeps no record of wrong. This is the criterion, sole norm, the standard of discipleship in the New Israel of God.” Brennan Manning, The furious longing of God. 1 ways to nurture bible reading commitment 2 church is always meant to be a little uncomfortable! 3 a great summary about the wonderful Helen Keller 4 the moment app is helpful and this article about taming your smartphone use [...]
During last Sunday’s talk from Luke 3 we saw that after Jesus is baptised and at prayer, the Holy Spirit descends upon Him and the Heavenly Father declares Him to be his Son as well as Servant. “Heaven was opened.” The baptism opens communication with heaven, that is, with God. Being earthbound is no longer a barrier. This is why faith in Jesus is so beautifully important. As God’s children we have instant access to him and his grace. Jesus underwent baptism not because he sinned, as we do, and needed forgiveness, but because he identified so much with us [...]
John Wesley, the great evangelist, said, “Give me a hundred persons who fear nothing but God, hate nothing but sin and are determined to know nothing among men but Jesus Christ and him crucified, and I will set the world on fire with them.” 1 Samuel Lane's worship ministry is so very helpful - enjoy this. 2 Habit formation is vital to pastoral ministry - a TED talk perspective 3 Mary deMuth is a helpful voice and here's her writing wisdom 4 Attractional church is not enough, it has to be about mission! 5 The ministry of presence and the Church [...]
So here's my seasonal list. It was a curious year that saw many wonderful and varied things globally and locally, including Julie and I stopping drinking diet coke! Books still win out.... real books that is! Books I most benefitted from were You Are What You Love by James K.A. Smith, Strong and weak by Andy Crouch, Essentialism by Greg McKeown, Deep Work by Cal Newport, Brand Luther by Andrew Pettegree, Being Disciples by Rowan Williams, The Imperfect Pastor by Zack Eswine, The Seven Stories That Shape Your life by Gerard Kelly, The Pastor’s Justification by Jared Wilson, The Emotionally Healthy [...]
I have been mildly erratic in posting and will seek to do better in frequency, content, and some creativity in 2017! 1 Pete Scazzero continues to speak to this vital area of emotional health brilliantly..... 2 The insights and wisdom learnt from Winnie the Pooh! 3 The reasons we do liturgy..... some learning. 4 TED talks are a gift, and here's some preaching application. 5 Never needed at a funeral - wisdom from Challies!
Some outtakes or summary from Sunday’s talk with our church family……. From the brilliance of Jonathan Edwards – the puritan, not the triple-jumper! As a young adult mid 1800's – Jonathan Edwards set down on paper a series of thoughts and practices to help cultivate growth in grace. These resolutions are immense, and Edwards would re-read this list at least once a week to keep his mind focused and renewed. The result: A man of humble godliness, who was to become a significant spark used to ignite one of the greatest revivals known to history. Even many unbelieving scholars admit Edwards may [...]
and here's the handout from our new years eve gathering..... I'm still chewing over questions 1 & 3 that I scribbled up for us all. What did you love most in 2016? and How might you better follow Jesus tomorrow and in all of the 2017? So what are you intending in 2017? Spend it well....