Showing posts from December, 2015


Allow me to be honest online.  I doubt. I struggle emotionally and philosophically to make life make sense, I always have done. But I also believe. I believe deeply and wonderfully and passionately, I always have done.  I don't know why I live with these two opposites so often. Maybe it's a personality defect, maybe I'm just not clever enough or well informed enough to figure it out. Whatever it is this is the headspace I live in and here's how I process some of the angst it creates. ------- I was helped recently by reading something Chris Evans (the TV personality & DJ) wrote in his new book: 'What to Do in a Midlife Crisis' (actually named 'Call the Midlife' but my title sums it up better). In his chapter on religion he wrote  'I've often wondered - and when I say often, I mean several times a day for as long as I can remember - whether I'm a man of faith or not. It helped me since it told me I'm not alone; non-religious

Essence: Saints

This week we're considering why it is that Paul addresses his letter to the Colossians to saints . To help us engage with this idea there's a video (above) and a blog (below), as well as our Weekly Challenge to complete (see bottom of the page). Saints Below are some reflections from Ephesians, a letter addressed to the saints living in Ephesus (a town in what is now Turkey). Before reading it write down on a separate sheet of paper or in a separate computer window everything that comes to your mind when you hear the word 'saint' as well as some questions you may have concerning the topic. Scripture Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God. To the saints who are in Ephesus and are faithful in Christ Jesus. Ephesians 1:1 Observations: I’ve often heard it said that Paul uses the term ‘saint’ to include every Christian and that in doing so, he is viewing us as God does, as holy and set apart, fully righteous in Christ. I’ve heard it said, but

FIGHT: Tigers & Puppies

Scripture Read Philippians 4:4-7 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.     Let your reasonableness be known to everyone.  The Lord is at hand;   do not be anxious about anything,  but in everything by prayer and supplication  with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.   And  the peace of God,  which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Observation Have you ever noticed how difficult it is to not think about something, especially something you're worried about? I well remember a few years ago when I was speaking at church on the subject of anxiety. The Bible passage said 'do not be anxious about anything...' and my message, it followed, was on 'freedom from anxiety'. Well, I was a mess. I was so nervous about it that I couldn't prepare for the sermon. Anxious thoughts about 'how not to be anxious' flew round and round my head. I couldn't sleep, couldn't pray,

The Original Battlefield

Every week for the next 7 weeks as part of the Essence teaching series we'll be posting videos & blogs to help us get to grips with our new identity in Christ. Be sure to visit our Facebook pages regularly for resources designed to help you grow. ________________________________________________________________________ Let's start by considering an important principle. Take a few minutes to read over the Bible verses listed below. Consider as you read them what they might have in common: I appeal to you therefore, brothers,   by the mercies of God,  to present your bodies  as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.   2  Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by  the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may  discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:1-2 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is