Monday, 19 July 2010

When the Going gets Tough

As a church we have been looking at the book of John, last Sunday I preached the last message of chapter 6 verse 60-71. In this passage, Jesus had lost many of His followers He was left with the twelve He had chosen and one of those He had chosen was a devil; they had walked away because He spoke the truth as regards Himself 6 v 53-58. They started grumbling and complaining about this teaching they said it was a 'difficult statement', the result of telling it like it is, led to these followers turning back and walk with him no more.

Many turn back, remember the passage these were described as 'disciples' it often starts when life gets busy, church and time set aside for God gets squeezed out of peoples lives or life has not turned out as they had hoped, it is often gradual but it becomes nearly impossible to maintain a growing on fire relationship with God, they might maintain something but not a growing dynamic fire within.

John Wesley spoke to a man who thought he could be a christian all by himself. Wesley picked up a pair of tongs and took a hot coal out of the fire, almost immediately it started to go out, he did not need to say any more, many people fall away today because they fail to see the importance of the warmth of Christian fellowship. Perhaps more importantly they stop seeking the Lord's presence regularly in their lives.
In John 6 verse 63 it says It is the Spirit who gives life;the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life.

The Holy Spirit is the Catalyst! (Oxford Dictionary 'catalyst' a person or thing that precipitates change, increases the rate of a reaction) keep in step with the Spirit he gives us life.



Wednesday, 7 July 2010


Last weekend Lindsey and I went to a pop festival!! ha ha I hear you laugh There was a great line up starting with Foye Vance, and ending the day with the great 60s icon Bob Dylan. All day great bands came and went on the main stage.

We queued to get in, we queued to get our wrist bands, we queued to get a drink , we queued to get an ice cream, I queued for the loo, and I queued for 20 mins to buy a Pizza. You are beginning to get the picture there were a lot of people needing to be fed and watered.

We left the main arena at 10 pm missing the last 40 minutes of Dylan's set, as we had a 2 hour drive home and I was due to preach Sunday morning at our church in Berkhamsted. We got back to the car at 10.15pm and started to leave the Car Park; having read the start of this post guess what time we eventually got to the exit to get on our way home? It was 1pm when we eventually hit the tarmac to start our journey home, and arrived in Berkhamsted at 2.45am Sunday morning.

Around us in their cars were a lot of people very frustrated because like us they were trying to get home, there were many expressing their frustrations and some very angry.

How did we do ? It was so frustrating that these thousands of cars in front of us were holding up our progress.

Over the years that I have been a Christian there have been many times of frustration and anger when my progress has been hampered, Saturday night as we tried to get home I felt like a prisoner.

Paul writes in Ephesians 4:1-2 Therefore I the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love.


Monday, 28 June 2010

Come on England!!

Sunday afternoon I sat in a friends house watching football, England v Germany, I do not want to make much of our disappointment, despair and failure of Our Team, or the lack of passion that was delivered by them. For many years I have watched England playing football and have gotten used to the disappointment which following your team often brings.
However, I saw great passion as the teams walked out of the tunnel onto the pitch, the air was thick with anticipation not just within the stadium but also in my friends house where we were hoping for a great victory for England, sadly it was not to be.
At the end of the game my friend John, and I sat in his lounge, now just the two of us realising we had perhaps set our expectations a little too high.

The questions I ask is what about next time when England play in the European Qualifiers, or in four years time for the World Cup, will the memory of this disappointment affect our hope and expectation of the England team and the winning of the competition?

This is my first post so I thought I would use the scripture in the title header. One of my favorites.

Philippians 3:12-14 'I press on, so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do; forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead. I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.'

This post is about football! but perhaps it is about something that is a lot more important than that; this is a matter of the heart and your mind, how will I respond the next time things don't work out as I had hoped? Will I have the same attitude which God has shown in the above text?