Monday, June 20, 2016

Under the waves

'Whatever storm, whatever crisis, may have caused the shipwreck may not be nearly as scary as the things you have to confront out here on the other side of where your ship sunk. When we are shipwrecked, everything that has lurked beneath the surface of our lives will rise from the bottom to meet us- and these are not beautiful creatures. Everything we've tried to push down for so long- every flaw and fault we've denied or ignored, every truth we'd rather not come to terms with- all of this will come to light in the crisis of a shipwreck

And we're not going to make it safely to shore unless we deal with these monsters we've dealt with for so long'

Jonathan Martin 'How to survive a shipwreck' 

Monday, June 13, 2016

Monday musing

1. It was the last chapter of 'Jesus continued' that moved me most deeply. It was about being broken and weak of which I am both.

'Remember he didn't call you  because he needed you. He called you because he loves you, he wants you to know his wonder and be amazed by his glory, and he wants to show off his power in you.' p.223

2. My next read is called 'How to survive a shipwreck'.

3. We have a super group gathering in our home for 'The Prayer Course' 

'The one concern of the devil is to keep the saints from prayer. He fears nothing from prayer-less studies, prayer-less work, prayer-less religion. He laughs at our toil, mocks at our wisdom, but trembles when we pray.....Prayer turns ordinary mortals into men of power....It brings fire. It brings rain. It brings life. It brings God. There is no power like that of prevailing prayer.' Samuel Chadwick 

p. 205' Jesus continued'

4. I enjoyed these photos of Mecca. Thank the Lord for the gospel of grace....

5. I will always need parenting tips.

6. I was reminded afresh of the timely watch of this which simply says: 'If God hasn't told you to plant a church don't'

7. I like the idea of a biography of a book. 

8. One of the Men on Mountains has been learning about problem-solving and dealing with anxiety. He sent through these three questions which are interesting:

Who knows about this problem? (if it’s just you, probably more people need to know)
Who cares about this problem? (feelings question)
Who can fix this problem? (ultimately a question that teases out the will - what do you really want and who has to  make that happen?)

Friday, June 10, 2016

Lower is higher

'The gospel begins with our brokenness and inability, not our power and potential. Billy Graham once said that rarely is it someone's sin that keeps them from heaven; usually, it is their good deeds. In the same way, it is our false sense of ability, not our inabilities, that keeps us from the power of the Spirit. Thinking we can get along fine "apart from" him keeps us from the gift of power available in him (John 15:5)

When you finally come to the place where you realise you have no true power, then you are ready to receive his. The great irony in the Christian life, you see, is that the way up is the way down. The lower we sink in ourselves, the higher we rise in him'

Jesus continued, J D Greear, p 217

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Seven bits and bobs

1. Mike Breen's model UP/IN/OUT for thinking about church and mission is a wonderfully simple one and has stuck with me since I first heard it.

2. Most people are more on the In and Out rather than Up thinking currently. Jason Manford made me laugh on HIGNFY saying his Dad's reason for staying 'In' was 'you don't want to be in that non-EU queue on holiday - it's always longer'. He is a very funny man...

David Keen has some interesting EU thoughts.

3. James Fraser, the long-time missionary to China, said, "I used to think that prayer should have the first place and teaching the second. I now feel it would be truer to give prayer the first, second and third places and teaching the fourth'

Jesus Continued, Page 202

4. I found this post called The four burners: Work-life balance thought-provoking and have been appraising my burners as a result.

7. Aimee Semple. McPherson was new person to me.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

The Greatest Discovery of your Life

'My greatest joy as a pastor is seeing people come alive in their spiritual gifts. If there ever has been someone I knew who had the spiritual gift of faith and intercession, Curtis was he. Curtis was an older gentleman in our church who had worked more than thirty years in the Veterans Affairs hospital. One day, in his late fifties, he listened to a message by Jim Cymbala of the Brooklyn Tabernacle on how God answers prayer. Curtis confessed he'd never seen God clearly answer a prayer in his life, so he set aside five minutes a day to pray for others.  That grew to ten minutes, then half an hour, then eventually an hour and a half each day. He developed a large email chain in our church that involved hundreds of people praying around the clock for one another's needs. At every stage of our church's growth, he bathed our steps in prayer. He spoke prophetic vision into my life, and into the future of our church

Curtis has gone to be with Jesus, but he remains for our church an example of the extraordinary accomplishments God brings about through those who pursue his mission in step with the Spirit.'

Jesus continued, Page 133