reload The Race by Maurice McCracken

Monday, October 27, 2008

sweeter than honey

posted by Little Mo | Permalink | 5 comments
I think I have blogged on this title before! My thoughts aren't ever original.

This week we went off to North Wales to do some training for the Welsh team - the third time we have done our Bible handling roadshow! It was fun as we looked at Psalm 19 again, I loved that description again - God's word is sweeter than honey.

It was great to experience it too though. On Thursday we went off to Lancaster for me to speak at the launch of the Free project for the universities there. It was SUCH as awesome time (I particularly loved the testimony from the gruff Yorkshire lad who became a Christian through reading the Bible last academic year: "If you don't think there's power in these words then you have got some serious thinking to do." Love it.)

To be honest, I struggled with this talk a bit, grappling all day to know how preach it - Mark chapter 7. But as I did preach it, the amazing sweetness of the words hit me: we are darker and more unclean than we ever could imagine, yet simply calling out to Jesus, wherever we are, wherever we are from, he will make us clean. It's SUCH good, sweet, awesome, generous, worthwhile, excellent, exciting amazing news. It's great to just be faced with the truth, dark as it is, that there need be no masks with Jesus. He knows that evil comes from inside me, and he is still willing, no, longing to help. And its so good to know that when people meet Jesus all they need to do is call out and he will make them clean.
Also encouraging was the fact that the Lancaster/Preston kids are so up for it. Please pray that for their clearly very deep conviction that God's word can change people shapes them to introduce Jesus to their friends.

This week: mission planning for Cumbria in a couple of weeks, and then off to Poland to plan for the IFES Formacion conference from Wednesday till Saturday. I'm so pleased that we are doing Mark there - please pray that all we do will help us to meet Jesus, to call out to him, to trust him and experience his amazing power to clean us up.

“It is finished!” O what pleasure
Do these precious words afford;
Heav’nly blessings, without measure,
Flow to us from Christ the Lord:
“It is finished!” “It is finished!”
Saints the dying words record;

Monday, October 20, 2008

Setting forth the truth plainly

posted by Little Mo | Permalink | 0 comments
We're having a great series in 2 Corinthians at church at the moment (so is Bish apparently). I am struck by so many things - but yesterday in 2 Corinthians 4 I was so struck by how Paul carries around Jesus death in order to see the life of Jesus at work in others.
Andrew so helpfully pointed out that, far from Christianity being a way to fulfil one's potential (contra a sermon my wife was listening to on the internet), and far from non-Christians being brought to new life by people seeing how great our lives are, actually new life is brought by us carrying round Jesus death - dying so that Jesus looks great.
2 Corinthians is so counter-cultural and so contemporary. It's a brave book to teach trying to attract thousands of victims of "God wants you to have endless spiritual highs" Christian youth work to your church. For it says, not only is our weakness real, but it is the way that God displays his greatness. Not only is suffering and difficulty part of the Christian life, it is part of God's planned method for building the church.
And that people are led to Christ by plain speaking Christians and God's power.

So, with that in mind, if you are praying for us this week, please pray for:
- us to be content to carry around the death of Christ so that the life of Christ can be seen in others
- to maintain confidence in the truth spoken plainly to change people through God's power: especially as we go off to do Relay training in Wales on Wednesday and I speak at the joint CUs mission launch at Lancaster on Thursday
- for me and Anna, and all the members of Christ Church to speak the truth plainly to the people we know who aren't Christians.