(November 10, 2018) Jeff Benson shares from the heart…
Like most people, I have many weaknesses. My greatest weakness by far has been my ‘fear of man.’
Such an inbuilt thing for me… a bit like when it comes to a fear of heights, when you walk up to the edge of a cliff or lean over a guard rail from up on top of a tall building and instantly feel that fear …
The fear of man can be the same. There’s often no conscious thought associated with it, we just feel that fear…it just happens … you just automatically and instantaneously feel that fear.
For me this feeling fear has been a huge issue… (more…)
(September 9, 2018) Tim Edwards shares a challenging thought…
Paul’s great challenge in Ephesians 5: 15-17 should hit home to Christians of every generation! The apostle warns, ‘Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.’
What do these verses say to us today?
- What does Paul, indeed any pastor, want Jesus’ followers to know? To realise that no matter how long we’ve been following and serving Jesus, God has more in store for us!
- And what does Paul, again any pastor, want Christians in any age to do? To understand that we should be asking God for more of himself and what is his plan for our life!
I have a little thought to share here that I trust will both bless and challenge those who are truly aware that the days are indeed evil and that there is still much kingdom work for us to be involved in before the return of our Saviour, King Jesus. My little thought? There is more! Let me share…
Relevant relationships today
Ephesians is such a great Bible book to read and meditate on – in fact it is just so good, and there is a huge amount we can learn, even from the text above. Basically the book is a letter to the church at Ephesus in which Paul is endeavouring to – (more…)
(September 9, 2018) Ed Delph shares another timely thought-provoker…
One of the most famous stories in the Bible is Luke 15. Although generally known as ‘the prodigal son chapter’ it is about putting three lost things back into circulation. It’s about…
- A restoration of dignity and purpose.
- Lost people getting back to the main road again after lengthy delays and detours.
- How God’s compassion never gives up.
- Seeing the essence of a person, not just the behaviour of a person.
- Having the love to accept people for who they are but not letting them under achieve perpetually.
Lost… and without a good future
The chapter starts with Jesus talking to a crowd of people about a lost sheep, a lost coin and a lost son… being lost they had no future. (more…)
(September 7, 2018) Carol Round shares on a precious gift…
‘Sweet friendships refresh the soul and awaken our hearts with joy, for good friends are like the anointing oil that yields the fragrant incense of God’s presence’ (Proverbs 27:9 TPT).
‘What are we celebrating today, ladies?’
When our waitress asked this question, I immediately said, ‘Our friendship.’
‘That’s a good thing to celebrate,’ she replied.
Friendships are forged
For over 12 years, I’ve been friends with a woman whom I call my soul sister. We are not related by human blood, but by the blood of Jesus Christ. (more…)
(August 26, 2018) Jeff Benson brings a challenge…
There’s a lot to love about being part of one’s church community!
One of the things that I enjoy the most is engaging with people who have only recently come to faith in Jesus. One example is a particular young lady who gave her life to Jesus about 14 weeks ago… it’s been really exciting to see her come alive through experiencing God at work in her life.
Discovering God’s love is infectious!
As she’s come to understand God’s love for her and has been sensing his voice and guidance, she’s come alive with an enthusiasm that’s actually quite infectious. Here’s a snippet of something she posted on Facebook recently (She’s allowed me to use it):
‘Through the blood of Jesus Christ we have been saved, we’re free of sin and justified by faith! So many blessings have been just poured over me since I came to faith and it’s so overwhelming at times but I am so thankful because of how much my life has changed! God shined so much light into my life and knowing that I have a God who loves me so much, who is always there and has the best plans for my life is just so amazing.’
Note how much this new Christian used the word ‘so’: So many blessings, so overwhelming, so thankful, so much light, loves me so much, so amazing! (more…)
(August 12, 2018) Brian Bell reflects on an ‘old’ but relevant truth…
You may be familiar with the words of this ‘old’ children’s song…
‘I may never march with the infantry; ride with the cavalry; shoot with artillery;
I may never zoom o’er the enemy but I’m in the Lord’s army – YES SIR!’
In recent times to help it ‘relate better’ to a more contemporary generation a verse has been added which speaks about Superman, Spiderman and Indiana Jones!
A vital fact
On the surface, the lyrics may seem to have little ‘spiritual’ content – I certainly was of that view… for a time, that is.
On reflection, however, while the song may not mention the Bible or characters within its pages (such as Joshua) that we would associate with the Lord’s army, as believers we are in the Lord’s army and this is a vital ‘spiritual’ fact.
This was emphasised to me recently when looking at Deuteronomy 20, a chapter dealing with instructions Moses gave to the Israelites about going into battle. (more…)
(July 18, 2018) Carol Round shares a comforting truth …
Have you ever purchased a product labelled ‘As is’?
We trust the lowered price of the item we’ve bought will be worth whatever hidden flaws might emerge later on.
One secret to overlooking flaws
On her 50th wedding anniversary, a woman revealed the secret of her long and happy marriage. She said, ‘On my wedding day, I decided to make a list of 10 of my husband’s faults which, for the sake of the marriage, I would overlook.’
One of her guests asked her what some of the faults she chose to overlook were.
‘To tell you the truth,’ she replied, ‘I never did get around to making that list. But whenever my husband did something that made me hopping mad, I would say to myself, “Lucky for him that’s one of the 10!”’
Paul’s advice was good: ‘Christ accepted you, so you should accept each other. This will bring honour to God’ (Romans 15:7ERV). (more…)
(July 17, 2018) Tim Edwards shares on some scriptures he found challenging…
So what guides us through tough times? How should we focus and navigate the journey?
A couple of weeks ago in my daily Bible reading a particular verse really caught my attention – ‘Egypt will no longer be a source of confidence for the people of Israel but will be a reminder of their sin in turning to her for help’ (Ezekiel 29:16).
The Israelites were having their difficult times – aware that they could not match the power of the advancing Babylonians. But they did something which ultimately they would regret – they chose to put their hope in Egypt to save the day for them.
It was false hope, misplaced hope – a hope in politics and economics, not in their God. And God didn’t want his people trusting in, hoping in, and putting their confidence in anything, anyone other than him. Nor does he want us to do likewise!
So, how am I going to move forward with God in my life in my troubled times? How are you? (more…)
(June 19, 2018) Norman and Margaret Moss share a great reflection…
Ah, what tangled worldwide webs we weave!
There’s a new acronym around: GDPR… which can, among other explanations, mean General Data Protection Regulation (European Union), Global Defence Posture Realignment (DoD Transformation Plan), Gross Domestic Product per Region, Group of Deputy Permanent Representatives (on the public disclosure of NATO documents), Graduate Degree Progress Report (Southern Methodist University; Texas) – or how about this one… Grateful Dread Public Radio (Baltimore, MD internet public radio station)!
But, Christian readers, sons and daughters of Almighty God, disciples of Jesus, GDPR does not stand for Get DePRessed – though I almost thought so when I first heard about it.
The Christian GDPR
Now this acronym stands for a great Bible truth of… God’s Deep Presence Rewards! (more…)
(June 18, 2018) Stuart Reynolds challenges all Christians – preachers, church leaders and church attenders…
Here’s a sign giving good advice re punctuation – and a grammatical warning!
Contextually misused scripture misquotes
If misused punctuation can cause misunderstanding and trouble, so can misused context… particularly in respect of reading and quoting Bible verses out of context!
Here’s an example. You can read in the Bible that ‘There is no God.’ However, when read in context, here’s what the Bible actually says: ‘The fool says in his heart, “There is no God”’ (Psalm 14:1).
In being prepared for ministry, it is rightly and repeatedly hammered home to prospective preachers – and needs to still be remembered by those more experienced – ‘a text without a context is a pretext!’ (more…)