On Wednesday 150 of us from churches across Yorkshire gathered to pray for Revival. We were unsure what to expect but we were quickly encouraged, not only by the numbers, but by the obvious faith and anticipation in the room! It was evident that we were praying on the back of a wave or prayer for revival across the different churches.
There are few things that warm our hearts more than seeing members of our family supporting one another and urging each other on. A great example of this has been with Hope Church Sittingbourne, a new pioneering undertaking of Cornerstone City Church.
In January 2017, Kings Church Eastbourne launched Love Eastbourne; a way of blessing the town, with ‘no strings attached’. It’s based on Random Acts of Kindness and the idea that generosity is infectious. We wanted something that the whole town could join in with and pass on; that was really easy, lots of fun, and that challenged our reserved British nature.
To date, it’s been all of those things. We’ve had lots of great stories and seen it spread outside our church and engage the community:
“Thank you so much to the kind person that posted this through my door. I don’t know who to personally thank so hopefully you will see/read this. I am completely overwhelmed that you thought of us, let alone did this. It has really touched our hearts xx”
I [Georgia Sims] have been a part of the Ignite team at Catalyst Festival for the last four years now. I now get the privilege of leading the amazing team, planning the activities and teaching for the fantastic kids who are a part of Ignite (School Years 3-6). There have been some real ‘WOW’ moments in God over the years, and I’m always humbled and, frankly, blown away by the level of faith and expectation our kids come to the Festival with and leave having had my faith completely stepped up a gear.
If anyone thinks they would like to move to the USA, think carefully. The lure of large salaries, large vistas, large shopping malls and large food portions is alluring to some but the challenge of not just getting there, but staying there is a huge. Simon and Kiralie have been battling to stay ever since they arrived and he is now in the midst of a master’s degree to make sure they can keep going. Despite the battle they are full of life and faith and the church is slowly growing. Guy, Tim Blaber and myself had the fun of living in their home for 5 days and enjoying warm hospitality and interacting with their friendly children. It has been tough for all of them, embracing a new culture always involves being able to adapt and work through issues and despite speaking the same language we might not mean the same thing. I was told in one shop “I don’t understand a single word you said”, so much for my accent!
ID stands for Intentional Discipleship. Whilst the whole of a Christian’s life is one of following Jesus and by being discipled by the church, there is great benefit in giving an extended period of time to receive deep, intentional and hopefully life-changing discipleship. This is true for Christians of any age, but there is a particular benefit to taking such a year sometime in the very formative years of 18-25. ID is a course designed to give just that opportunity. It is an eleven month course that consists of a placement in a local church, opportunities to grow in gifting and service, mentoring, excellent teaching in doctrine and spiritual growth, coaching in evangelism, fellowship with other Christians of your age, and short term immersion in oversees mission.
“For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.” (Rom. 5:17)
I [John Lanferman] remember so clearly my sense of failure and self-loathing in my repeated failures. It seemed that no matter how hard I tried, my resolve would vanish and I would experience yet another failure. Of course these failures were inconsistent with my understanding of what it was to be a Christian. Often I thought of myself as a hypocrite, unable to resist temptation, making a resolve one minute but failing the next. My experience caused me to question my salvation. Frankly, “reigning in life” as declared in Romans 5:17 wasn’t my experience. Although I had no lack in desire or effort, each time I would resolve to do better it seemed I set myself up for another failure. My understanding of what it was to be a Christian was very law-driven. Living by rules and regulations, however, ends in failure and disappointment. When I succeeded in following the rules I still failed; it led to pride and judgment of those who didn’t follow the rules. Attempting to live by the law always ends in failure. The law actually seems to make you want to sin. It’s like telling a child not to touch something and then they immediately go and touch it.
Welcome to our January Newsletter – as ever there is a lot that we want to update you about. With that in mind we’ve split this month’s Newsletter into two parts. Here is part 1.
Into The Word – Yorkshire Region – Starts: 3rd February This ten-session course to help students get to grips with the narrative, themes and literature of the whole Bible. This is for leaders and all who want a chance to look deeper into God’s word. More Here
Working With The Media – 10 February 2018 Would you like to develop a good working relationship with your local press and media outlets? Would you know how to handle things if your church was the focus of unwanted media attention? Book Here!
Jared and Helen Hodgson from Gracechurch, Bromsgrove, are seeing decades-old promises from God realised as they set up their charity, Hope at Home, a hosting scheme for survivors of human trafficking. They believe that God sets the lonely in families and their vision is to see every survivor within the UK placed with well-trained and supported Christian hosts in order to find dignity and see their lives restored.