Monday, 29 April 2013

International Sunday

Redeemers 1st celebration gathering the nations that are already present and praying for the countries of the world!

Great to sing different songs

Loved seeing people dressed up

Enjoyed sampling  different snacks

Moved by prayers in folks first language

A foretaste of heaven!

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Written Off

My wife was carefully driving home from work last week when she stopped for someone using the zebra road crossing. Unfortunately the van behind used the rear of our car to come to a halt. (He did apologise and we do have a witness)

When Nicky phoned the insurance company the next day they immediately informed us over the phone that the car would be a written off. Being keen on the reliable motor we have had for years we managed to get the insurer to agree that a garage take a look and see if an official estimate could extend the life of our car.

From the front the car looks great; we are still able to drive it! (Though I admit we cannot open the boot, get the rear seat to stay in position or turn off the inside light...) We were disappointed to be informed that the scrap man would be dispatched to remove out pile of junk from the UK road network.

As human beings we all pick up scratches in life; teasing, being misunderstood and feeling left out. Many have been involved in at least one major accident - a failed project or divorce.

I am so glad that God does not treat us like we treat old cars - no longer of any value - scrap it. Instead God loves us so much that paid the ultimate price by sending His own Son to die for us.

I do not know what has happened in your past.
Other people might have written you off.
You might have written yourself off
God does not write you off


Sunday, 21 April 2013

The London Marathon 2013!

I had been banned by my wife from previously writing on the subject (there is no such thing as a free press!) but now the word is out....

Nicky has been training for the London Marathon - I would even consider myself her coach - as I did the 22 mile training run with her a few weeks back.

Yesterday we completed the final registration procedure and I was up early scrapping the ice off the car to get her to the station today.
Straight after church, Lois & I jumped on the tube and managed to spot Nicky running well at the 23 mile mark, before meeting up in Horse Guards Parade when she had her medal in tow.

I remember a few years back when Nicky was confirmed to have the early stage of osteoporosis and the doctors suggested the benefits of the weight bearing exercise of running as better for her than the swimming Nicky so enjoyed.
The 1st mile seemed a struggle and then Nicky set the target of a 1/2 marathon. I don't think she ever contemplated a marathon - but now it is job done and now the next thing is an ironman challenge (OK now I am getting carried away)

I am so proud of my wonderful wife!

Is there something you thought you could never do in life that you now need to set to?
So often the only barrier is a mental one - we think we cannot do it.

I suggest get out of the chair and give it a go!

Friday, 19 April 2013

When do feelings return?

I do respect the medical profession but like most men I struggle to rush for help.

It was just over 3 weeks ago when Nicky brought a new set of kitchen knives that the incident happened.
I was washing up and thought one of the new knives was dirty so tried to rub it hard with a scouring pad. Unfortunately the cleaning equipment escaped and I ended up pushing my finger onto and long the sharp blade.

When I saw the blood drip on the floor I began to realise it was a deeper cut than I first thought. We put a plaster on it but the red stuff soaked through quickly so I had to sit there for a while holding my finger up high; now with a white bandage in place.
A week later and I still needed to cover the injury as the skin would split open if I knocked my finger on anything.  Now the tip of the finger is covered with baby looking skin but it constantly feels pin and needles  (Makes me type funny so a good excuse for bad spelling!)

Any medics know when my finger will return to feeling normal?

It also makes me reflect that many of us get cut / hurt by experiences in life. If we don't seek help it often takes longer to heal. Occasionally we can still 'feel numb' (I know thats an oxymoron) years later and wondered if we will ever fully recover. I do not believe that time heals - but I trust that God does! Is it possible to speed the process or do we have to be patient?

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Sifted

For those of you aware of the 5 Love Languages - I have decided that mine is now gifts! (Well I love getting them even if not so good at giving them)

My younger brother recently read a book and thought I would like it so ordered me a copy - thanks Steve feeling very loved.

'Sifted' by Wayne Corderio

We all want nice happy easy lives but as Christians we can sometimes be wondering where did it all go wrong.... why are times so tough?

This book is a wonderful honest dealing of the tough circumstances of life. The author also draws in 2 others Frances Chan and Larry Osborne, with very helpful testimonies and insight.

We all fall down but do you learn and do you get back up?
Are you able to fix your eyes on Jesus in the good and bad?

I thoroughly recommend you read the book.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Friend support

I am sure that most would agree all leadership has the potential to be a lonely place.

I feel that leading a church plant can feel lonelier still.

Maybe is it due to the stage we are at or the age I am approaching that I sooooo appreciate friends.

True friends are there in the good and the bad, during the highs an the lows, they celebrate and commiserate, they share your joy and feel your pain.

Nicky & I are so privileged to have some great friends that are cheering us and Redeemer on:
Howard & Naomi Kellett @ Godfist
Sean & Liz Green @ Reading Family Church
Dave & Julie @ Kings Church Harrow
Steve & Deb Tibbert @ Kings Church London

Not only have these guys stood with us financially but emotionally and spiritually. Thank you is not enough but I do now know what else to say - we sooooo appreciate you!

Monday, 8 April 2013

Practical Support

I often joke that if you belong to a church pant there is no need to join a gym - the amount of physical work involved will keep you fit!

Just this last Saturday I so appreciated people gathering at my house so that we could then go leafleting and invite others to visit the church. Great to literally race up and down the streets delivering flyers.

Sunday is also a busy day with people arriving early at the Town Hall to lug PA gear, move chairs, make drinks, carry boxes, clean toilets, set out signs and then after the meeting to clear it all up again!

I am so impressed by the commitment of folk to practically help: this week one person moved their day off from Saturday to Sunday so they could serve the on the kids work and another couple flew back early from a few days in France to be at the meeting and then join their community group lunch!

I love the energy and enthusiasm of church planting and am so glad I get to do it with others!

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Financial Support

Anyone who has attempted church planting appreciates that it is not likely to be a cheap task.

At Redeemer we aim to do things well as we want to give the best we possibly can for Jesus.
Bills roll in for hiring Ealing Town Hall each Sunday, setting up the web site, purchasing PA, printing leaflets, paying for adverts - not to mention my salary!

I am so thankful for the very generous folk who have already made Redeemer their spiritual home and regularly give.
I am also hugely grateful to the individuals and churches who have given us one off gifts or even made a regular commitment to help us during the first couple of years.

I believe that the church will continue to grow and that there will come a time when we will no longer need external financial support (having said that we always want to task risks for God so will keep trusting Him for future financial needs).

Thanks for investing with us!

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Prayer Support

Despite several people being away on a break following the Easter weekend our mid-week small group gathered last night.

On a cold evening we huddled round cups of steaming tea, drew the curtains against the biting wind and decided to light the fire. We munched through crisps, sweets, homemade fresh cookies and had a few grapes.

I loved the evening. The 7 of us shared openly and honestly about events happening in our lives and how we felt as a result. There were thougthful words, and reassuring gestures towards each other.

And then we prayed!

Wonderful to know that we have a Father in heaven who holds the whole world in His hands, knows all about everything and has the power to make a difference. He is with us whatever the future holds. We heard from Him about several of the situations.

Can I encourage you to pray for and with each other!
Don't just say  / text / email - 'I'll pray for you'.... lets be those who PRAY!