I was thinking about prayer this evening. A lot of us have probably been told that we shouldn’t ask God …
I do not like jigsaw puzzles. I can usually manage the corners and edge pieces but after that I get …
Even though it was 20 years ago and the man writing this is totally different to that attention seeking arrogant teenager I still wake up feeling guilty and shameful. How can I call myself a Christian? How can God love me when I could do that? And as I deconstruct myself more memories of my failings assault me. Times when I didn’t measure up, when I deliberately went against God.
1 Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock …
But you are also free to sin, free to choose your own way, free to hate. Free to value yourself over others, to be selfish free to oppress, abuse and kill.
At the end of the meeting one of the female leaders came up to me and said something I have never forgotten – ‘God is going to do great things through you.’ She meant well, but I honestly believe it was one of the worst things she could have said.
It seems to me that the love Jesus displayed was not a frilly, doily type of love but a love that drove Him to the cross. “Greater love has no-one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends” said Jesus, and He should know.
But although parents do fail regularly the issue is not about single events but the whole child. It would be easy to dwell on my own failures. With five children I have been given many opportunities to fail. When I look at my father who is eighty-years old I do not examine his failures but I celebrate his successes. I am proud of my father. It wasn’t easy.
A plague wipes out 70,000, and then God sends His angel to Jerusalem to smash it. But it becomes too much for God and He extends His mercy calling the angel off as he is poised over the threshing floor of Araunah. It’s at this point that David looks out and sees the angel with his sword drawn, poised but frozen and David is faced with the place where God’s wrath meets God’s mercy. This threshing floor goes on to be the site of the temple. This visual representation of the wrath/mercy smack down captivated me.
Several months have passed since I last wrote about tea. I am amazed that a simple cup of tea could …
When I prioritise the relationship rather than the arrangement I find it easier to maintain both. I don’t hold myself to a legalistic schedule, I operate grace and somehow it has worked.
Finding your way as a Christian is no different. If you don’t know where you are now then how can you work out where you are going? Christian life is a journey. It has a beginning, but this is where many choose to sit and go no further.
Could it be that in the act of sacrificially loving others we meet and learn to love Jesus on a whole new level? It seems that focusing on Jesus can be an excuse to ignore the plight of our fellow travellers while still convincing ourselves that we are ‘right with God’.
While I cannot see the future, God views my entire life in an instant. He planned it. He sent me to sea because He needed to use that experience later on in my life. He put me where I am now. He has prepared and trained me for everything He has expected from me.
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his …
Yesterday John and I took a pre-Christmas trip to Devon to deliver Christmas presents to my parents. While they went …
I mean surely the Holy Spirit requires more room in the heart than it does in the belly. It’s not that I’m massively overweight but there has been a noticeable expansion in the gut region in recent years.
Satan does not differentiate when he comes to rob and steal and destroy, but he does seem to enjoy hitting high profile targets such as church leaders. Many of us are soft targets and easily defeated yet God has made everything we need to become hard or harder targets freely available. The only real demand He makes of us is our time. Because it takes time to put on armour.
Contrast that to the move my second eldest son and his wife are making later this week. They are moving into a house built in 1907 that requires much more work than the house next door to me. They will live in the house and tackle the task bit-by-bit, room-by-room. It is going to take quite a while.
We convince ourselves that we have some how escaped the sphere of God’s vision, knowledge, influence, and reach, and rather than turn back towards the light we retreat further into the darkness. The film Nightwatch put it like this ‘It is easier for a man to destroy the light inside him than to fight the darkness all around him.’
The mate tipped me out of my bunk and onto the deck of my cabin. “The crew are on strike. Get your backside down into number five hold and get sweeping. The old man (captain) is down there. If the old man is sweeping, then so are you.” (Polite version.)
And that’s the real rub isn’t it? Things not turning out how we expect. The world would be a much better place if things turned out that way I expected all the time. A much better place… for me at least.
I’m not sure what made me say it, but as the coffee shop lady drew level with me I said “ain’t you gonna bless me too?” I got the same treatment as the taxi driver. Too say I was stunned is an understatement.
…but I built you up. I placed you on the altar of my life and worshiped you. You were a gift and I made you a king. I know you weren’t the only one, there were many others, but you were the one I needed the other day. You had your big chance. You blew it.
His life had become a daily grind of serving seafarers, helping them make phone calls home, taking new paperback books onto the ships, etc. The excuse for resigning? “I’m nothing more than a telephonist and a librarian.”
That Norwegian couple made a great impression on me and I have never forgotten their hospitality or their generosity. I wonder if other Christians criticised them for buying beer for seafarers. I wonder if members of their church worried about them and considered them strange.
Having just finished a two-week business trip to New Zealand and Australia in December 2000 I had one day free …
This is one of my most recent messages at church and it’s only 15 minutes!
I am not sure how you measure friendship, but the best friend I have ever had is a man I …
If I could be healed tomorrow I can’t lie I would jump at the chance. But not for all the money in the world would I change the past four years of my life. It was in these tumultuous years through silence that God invited me to reconnect with Him and I accepted. It was through the silence of my illness and confinement that Gods grace shone on me and He invited me to know Him deeper.
But more than the experience of seeing God in the night sky I also remember the sense of His presence as I acknowledged His craftsmanship. That sense of His presence was accompanied by God’s loving touch right there in the darkest portion of the night, in the middle of the ocean.