Saturday, 28 January 2006

Soul Purpose

We play in a worship band called Soul Purpose... It all started off with Autumn Soul in 1996 - members have come and gone but since 2000 we've been fairly much the same group of friends.

This picture was taken at a 'black and white'-themed dinner a few weeks ago - hence the smart look! - and it includes most of the current band as well as an assortment of 'significant others'. I always enjoy playing music with this group of people (and the lovely people who step in at times to help out)... They just seem to know where to go in worship. I'm looking forward to this year's Castlewellan Holiday Week too!

Never Stop Loving

Wow. Just like buses, there's no post for a few weeks and then two come along at once! Some more random musings for you...

I've been a leader of the Youth Club that my church runs for a dozen years now, including two as leader-in-charge with my lovely Kathryn. In that time I've seen a lot of young people go through our doors. Some have stayed with us for years, others for a few weeks. We try to get to know all their names and pray for them. We try to do what's best for them, give them surprises, help create memories and a space for friendship. Most of all, we long to see them meet with Jesus and know Him for themselves.

Which is why occasionally when they reject it all or disrespect us, a momentary thought flashes across my brain - "Smite them all, God!"

It's probably for the best that I'm not God and that His patience never ends.

So I was thinking, to save myself from getting impatient or angry or hurt, I should leave it all up to them: I do my thing, they accept or reject but in the end it's their problem, their lives. It was at this point that I realised - if I stop caring about these young people something much more serious will happen: if I stop loving these young people and become numb to save myself pain, I could stop feeling. At all.

I would be a worse person and gradually the lack-of-love would spread into the rest of my life.

Let's keep praying for the people around us, and when they hurt us let's remember that God takes our pain and replaces it with joy and peace. He is in control. He is our 'loving heavenly father' who never stops loving.

Thursday, 12 January 2006

Lost in worship

I went to the first session of a new discipleship course that's running in our church - Freedom in Christ. It looks like it's going to be good.

I was chatting to a friend later and he asked whether I was glad that I had my life sorted, seeing as how I knew I was going to be a minister and all that. Hmmm. We talked about getting to do everything you've ever wanted to do - and what's beyond? I said I see my life as a walk, a series of steps with God. I can't see the end product or the biggest thing I'll ever do. If 'doing' is what I measure life-success by then I'm going to end up pretty dissatisfied. I'm now of an age where parents, aunts and uncles are all on the verge of retiring - are they now purposeless, having 'done' the biggest things of their lives?

I don't care what I end up doing, toooo much. But what I do want is to be lost in worship of my Lord and King more and more frequently. I want to get in as much practice for Heaven as possible - and bring as many with me as possible. I don't need to be a minister to do that.