Posts Tagged ‘Jesus’


This morning I got up at silly o clock, cycled to the station admiring the pretty sunrise and headed to London to talk to some women at breakfast about Advent. We thought about Jesus’ first coming and the waiting process for that, how random 400 years of silence from God must have been, we also got excited at Zechariah’s song in Luke:

“And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High;
for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him,
to give his people the knowledge of salvation
through the forgiveness of their sins,
because of the tender mercy of our God,
by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven
to shine on those living in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide our feet into the path of peace.”

We then looked towards Jesus’ second coming. Some waiting takes so long that you forget what you are waiting for.  We probably do that a bit too much with Jesus. I forget that he is coming back, that he will come for us, there are prophecies yet to be fulfilled. There is more than this.

Naturally as I was doing the talk we finished with a bit of Revelation 21 and some of C S Lewis’ ‘The Last Battle’. We live in mere shadowlands which will one day seem like just some crazy weird dream. Oh for the final dawn, the final sun rising to bring in the new world. Come back Jesus. Come back.


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Being broken is hard. Being broken means I will hurt the people I love most, being broken means I can’t contain it into a nice neat box of manageable items and experiences. Being broken means I will hurt you. It will manifest itself in ways that aren’t polite or helpful. Being broken means I will not ask for help and shout at you when you try. Being broken means I will do this time and time again. Being broken means I can’t contain my mess into nice manageable chunks and being broken means that’s what I hate the most. Being broken means I don’t want to break and make a fat mess all over the place. Being broken means I want to show that I have all this sorted out. Being broken means I hate receiving because it means you have seen that I am broken.

Loving me is hard, loving you is hard when we are together with our defenses down, this is costly, this is painful, this involves facing the reality that we are not perfect. That we are in fact broken. I’m tired of pretending I am not broken but I find it hard to know how to express that in ways that don’t splurge my brokenness all over people, mainly because that’s my pride again, not wanting to get in the way in case I alienate all around.

But that’s the reality of this life for all of us. We are all broken and messy, we are all called to take each others flack as the broken pieces of our lives shatter and shard into all around. We live in a mess of pain and confusion most of the time. We can pretend no more. The best thing about this body of Christ thing is that we absorb each others pain and mess, that we share it around, that we family each other in these times. I’m ridiculously fortunate enough to know the unconditional love of my family. It’s a rare thing in this world. I love being able to cry and rant and rave at them (they might be less enamoured with this than me:)), I love turning up at their houses and being able to cry on them and know their tears with me. And I love being in this family in my house where we do the same, we strop at each other, we cry with each other, we’re learning the ways and means of the unconditional love of our Father as he teaches us how to live His ways in His family.

Family isn’t limited to blood or upbringing. We’re part of family here and now and that’s one of the most profound things about being a Christian. It’s not about the rules, not about the religion, not about saying the right things, not about looking good in this world. It’s about being part of the best family in the world. Where we are dearly loved everyday. Where we weep and rejoice with each other, where we share in the mundane and the deeply profound, where we laugh, hold hands, pray, watch tv, shout at each other, insult each other and deeply deeply love each other. Because we know we are loved by One better than all of us. And so we look out for each other, we lay aside our own interests. We often joke in our house that we are married to each other and sometimes that’s what it feels like, we do things to support each other, to hold each other as more important than what I want to do right now.

We can do all of this, it’s no mere desire for utopia, it’s way way better than that, it’s admitting we are broken and loving in the reality of that. Because One man did so much more than that for us, One man became broken so we could be whole. One man gave up the glory of heaven and died for us, one man poured himself out for us. There isn’t any other better expression of love than Jesus. His is the path we follow each day, that rejection of self and commitment to the people around us.

And that’s the battle we will face until we stand before him. Choosing each day His path. Each moment, His path. Saying sorry when we hourly get it wrong, accepting his crazy beautiful love again and again and learning the tone, rhythm, feel and directives of the family of God.

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Following on from my well recieved (amongst some quarters at least) “you know you’re a Staff Worker when…”. I was driving home tonight and several thoughts came to mind. I share them with you. Enjoy at your leisure, any complaints can be made to the usual address…

You know you’re not a UCCF Staff Worker when…

You find yourself in one place, for an entire month.

You don’t drive to 10 different places in one week.

You’ve slept in your own bed for an entire month.

You haven’t been to 5 conferences already and show no sign of freshers flu, or trench foot from the mud at Forum.

At the end of the day when you mentally calculate the hours you’ve spent with students, you realise that it doesn’t matter, it’s not your job anymore.

You fill your car with petrol every 2 weeks instead of every 2 days.

You suddenly have free evenings, free evenings, to play, to see friends, to get involved with church.

Doing Bible Study seems like fun, not work.

You find yourself thinking, oo maybe I will put some Christian music on the ipod, I haven’t heard any for a while.

(to be fair, there are a whole lot more things I could write that I really do miss about not being on Staff anymore, I miss the people, the banter, the talking to people who have way bigger brains than me who love Jesus way more than I do who inspire me to more…)

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My Brother

If you’ve been reading this blog at all you’ll know how much I love my big brother. Here he is in action preaching at his church. Pretty much everything I think comes through the filter of his larger than a planet brain, he is a dude, even if he does have a posh rah voice. 🙂 (sorry Mark, couldn’t resist it…). He really loves Jesus and preaches Jesus, in a really sensitive way, there is so much emotion and passion here, passion that isn’t loud and showy but that is quiet and really wants people to get that God cares for them and to help us keep on trusting in God’s ways of doing things (which I rant and rage at all the time). The God he knows and tells me about makes me want to carry on being a Christian. (and yes, he makes me cry)

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Much has happened since we last spoke. Mainly I’ve been coming to terms with the reality that I shall be moving on from this house to a new one in (God willing etc) a few weeks time (or 1 week and 2 days time). Eek. Lots of things are changing yet again. This job is coming to an end and soon I shall have 3 new housemates, together facing the challenge of being 4 wretches under one roof, trying to consider each others interests as better than our own. I’m torn between wild excitement at the new things to come and despondency at having to leave things behind and face the change in circumstances and relationships.

With all this going on it’s a good job Hebrews 13 is in the Bible. And an even better job that it keeps on cropping up. It says: “Be content with what you have because God has said, “never will I leave you, never will I forsake you.” So we say with confidence, “the Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid what can man do to me?”… Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.” We have a Rock in such times. We have one who remains with us, and so we can be content and confident. That’s a pretty good thing in this crazy, ever changing world around us.

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There has to be an outlet for my random meanderings. (well there doesn’t have to be, that’s more of a wish thing. But bear with me…) Here is as good a place as any to swirl the thoughts of my brain around.  So some from the last week for future recollection, fear not, they are not particularly profound.

I like boys. (see not profound at all).  My life has become lacking in boys recently and I’m glad to see that trend being reversed, on the whole they are lots of fun.

I love praying when it really is just about talking to God and not impressing the people around you. Times when you laugh a lot at the random stuff that comes out of our heads sometimes and people do things as simple as tell Jesus they love Him. (note to self, start really praying like that more often.)

I’m not sure REM’s new album is a return to form. It’s better than the in parts tedious Around the Sun, but it’s nowhere near as good as In Time and Automatic. I could be wrong. The guitars are loud and fast and that is swaying me to be kind to it.

It turns out there is a God who is at work in this world. Three conversations already this week have made me smile at seeing His work in peoples lives and hearts. I sense the words privilege-to-do-this-job rising to the surface so I’ll hastily carry on before I skip further down the path of jargon phrases.

This one is for Anna H: We’ve got to bring people to the fountain of life, and we’ve got to be drinking deeply ourselves. There is no point just running cups of water to people without drinking ourselves, there is no point people being dependant on us. There is every point in bringing people to Jesus and watching as they encounter him and are changed.

There really is no better way to spend your Saturday than a walk in the wind on the downs, downing cups of tea, watching Top Gear repeats and then feasting on a banquet of lush food. Mmmm.

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Jesus died.

Jesus did what dead men don’t do and rose.

Jesus will come again.

That makes most things make sense. (kinda weird eh.)

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