Tuesday, 20 June 2006

Where Two or Three...

Just like a Belfast bus, you wait for ages and then two posts come along in quick succession!

I came home last night from our small group and thought I ought to talk about it with you. NOT that I'm going to spill my guts out to you (or anyone else's for that matter!) but just to say how key I think small group fellowship is for a Christian. I honestly don't know what I would do without the support of people in our church, and especially those more vulnerable moments when we share our hearts with friends.

I would almost go as far as saying that a Christian who isn't involved in some sort of smaller group of people for fellowship, learning, service and accountability is guaranteed to not be operating at their God-designed best. I say almost because there will be those who God gifts to be able to work - for a period - without such support. But if you don't know you're in that position you need to get stuck in!

And then there's the community aspect - you may not feel the need to be involved, and small groups may grate on you like nothing normal. You may feel the study is too basic. You may not feel a need for support. But what about the other people whose lives are on hold and who need to hear of your experiences to set them free? And who said God had completed your learning process and you now know everything there is to know?

God exists in community and he designed us to live in community, raw, deep, real, at-times-uncomfortable, laugh-and-cry community. It produces authentic ministry.

Monday, 19 June 2006

Greek Myth?

I'm sitting in our study/guestroom/dump/nursery re-checking my exam results... I did fine in New Testament and Theology but the real shocker for me was Greek - 72% !!! Now it may have been an easier than normal exam (the class average was 71) but who cares? I got a First in Greek!

All on top of a good week news-wise. Anyone spot the other piece of news?

Friday, 2 June 2006

Holy Spirit, Rain Down

'Holy Spirit, Rain Down' is the first track on an album that my parents bought for me years ago. It's a Hillsongs album, and the front cover is in pastels. My first impressions weren't good! But over the years it's been a regular quiet-time companion. And this year the sentiment behind it has been working on me...

There is an imbalance in the way most of us perceive God. We can comprehend that if the Universe was created by a god, it could be God the Father. And that He might communicate his love and care through beauty and attention to detail. We can accept that if anyone could save us from ourselves and point to a better way, it could be God the Son. And that He might, as God, live among us, as us, dying for us, communicating again his undying love for us.

Where we sometimes stumble is in accepting the third member of the Trinity, God the Holy Spirit. Can we comprehend that God, being God, might work in supernatural ways, often behind the scenes but occasionally out in the open through the miraculous? Can we grasp hold of the truth that there are some things that Christians are able to do that without God, would be impossible? Can we accept that God wants to speak directly into our lives and through our lives?

Let's get a balanced view of God, where we free Him to work in us in every way he so desires. It's Pentecost Sunday this weekend - we celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit, Rain Down.