Sunday, June 20, 2004

Friday saw the end of an era - my first year of university ahhhhhhh. Jonny (My room mate) left and so did pretty much everyone else and I was a little bit lost. This drove me to remember what was said at the last cu meeting of the year about contentment from philipians 4v10-23. We are not content if we hold to (1)Material Things and if we rely on our satisfaction to come from (2)People or relationship. Everything we do must be done in God's strength if we are to be content in it. This is what Paul discovered.

This leads me back to the realisation Paul had in his letter 2 Corinthians 5:14-6:2. We now live for Christ, we no longer have a worldly perspective and we have a "ministry" to share that of a saviour that has reconciled men to God. Which we are "Ambassadors" of. This morning in church we looked at Revelation 2:1-7 just about how the church in Ephesus had lost its first love and I guess that is what I mean in my last post.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Had a really good weekend away at in Wales with Bristol CU ( We were looking at 1 Samuel and drawing some key themes out of it. The two themes (which I can remember, there might be more I was asleep alot) were "Ritual vs Reality" and "Pattern vs Principle". In 1 Samuel 4 the sons of Eli are in a war against the philistines and are losing. They choose to bring out the Ark of the Covenant to help them win the battle. Also in Numbers 20 Moses is commanded to speak to a rock to get water from it, but instead he strikes it twice with his staff because this is what had worked before at Horeb (Exodus 17). On both these occasions God was limited to a pattern of work.

In the same way today in the church I think we limit God, in our expectations we limit him. The work of the church becomes more of a ritual than a reality. Reading another blog ( I found the comment arguing the case for a rich "retelling of the story" in the church. I put it to you that it is not a retelling of the story in modern terms which is needed but a break away from the patterns and rituals we have got into. What I mean is that we need to be disciplined and practical in the outworking of our faith remembering the dynamics of the early church and the passion they had which is recorded in Acts. We need to have a reliance on the character of God and hold fast to his Gospel of salvation. Deuteronomy 4 records the obedience God demanded of the Israelites so that they could "take possession" of the land God was bringing them into. I want for this same unshakeable discipline in the church. There is a song that contains the line "Lord send revival, Start with me" and this I believe is the best way to start but chat to me about more practical details I am thinking through.