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 [...]
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 [...]
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!
“We are not meant to die merely in order to be dead. God could not want that for the creatures to whom He has given the breath of life. We die in order to live.” Elizabeth Elliot 1 Helpful reminders on leading church change. 2 The challenge of distraction - helpful stuff! 3 Some of the best twitter counsel! 4 Godly leadership courage in church is needed 5 Compassion fatigue, and all that!
“For those who feel their lives are a grave disappointment to God, it requires enormous trust and reckless, raging confidence to accept that the love of Jesus Christ knows no shadow of alteration or change. When Jesus said, "Come to me, all you who labour and are heavy burdened," He assumed we would grow weary, discouraged, and disheartened along the way. These words are a touching testimony to the genuine humanness of Jesus. He had no romantic notion of the cost of discipleship. He knew that following Him was as unsentimental as duty, as demanding as love.” Brennan Manning 1 [...]
"And you shall take to you on the first day the fruits of the fairest tree, and branches of palm trees, and boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook: And you shall rejoice before the Lord your God." – Leviticus 23:40 "Jesus found a donkey and sat upon it, as Scripture says: Do not fear, city of Zion! See, your king is coming, sitting on the colt of a donkey!" - John 12:14 "No pain, no palm; no thorns, no throne; no gall, no glory; no cross, no crown." - William Penn Remember Palm Sunday tells us... its the [...]
"The church, which is a kingdom fellowship under King Jesus, counters each of these stories with the story of new creation that becomes possible through the power of the Spirit and the life of Jesus. Kingdom creates a family called a church." Scot McKnight 1 Eight killers of momentum and motivation. Ron's insight. 2 Creativity's worst enemy: "Creators carry with them the scars from cynic’s attacks, wounds that are healed because of grace." 3 Corderio's Dead Leader Walking video footage. 4 Thom Rainer's insights as to what may happen in the church this year. 5 Tim Chester's blog on the puritan [...]