identity, Luke 10, Mission

A Sent People.

There is a great verse in 1 John which says: “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!”

I am far from a perfect dad, and although I love my daughter and would do anything for her, my love doesn’t come close to that of God’s love for us (for we can’t love more than God!)…

Maybe this week just remember something of the extravagance of God’s love for us?

Today I left them behind for most of the rest of the Easter break, and it feels sad being separated from them, maybe this is the ache in God’s heart, in pain whenever he is separated from his children.

God misses you when we don’t talk to him.

God is excited about spending time with you and me, because he loves us, we are his children… Maybe put your name into that verse, make it person…

“see what great love the Father has lavished on………the he should be called a child of God, for that is what s/he is”.

I think this verse is critical when we think of mission, it is out of the overflow or the abundance of who God  is, and what he has done that in our motivating spur onwards “the love of Christ compels us”.

Last night we had our Praise and Proclaim service at Ascension with Si Jones, very very inspiring preach, and also some interesting thoughts from chatting with him too.

Si spoke of ‘seeking first the Kingdom of God’ rather than simply worrying about preserving Church status quo, he spoke of learning to be a Kingdom people, being generous, hospitable, loving Christ Centred Communities; that in giving away we grow and in trying to ‘play it safe’ we end up shrinking, withering and dying.
-Pray that as Churches locally we may grasp this truth of being a Kingdom people that are stepping out in faith…

The talk went on to talk about Jesus saying “come to me all who labour and are heavily laden” but also says “go into all the world and make them my disciples”…

Coming and Going.

Some Christians are great at coming to Jesus and love the Christian warmth of a
safe and cosy Churchy environment; but forget that he also is a God who sends.-Pray that as Churches locally we may grasp the missionary ‘sending’ heart beat of God for the least, the last and the lost; the marginalised and disenfranchised.

Si based his talk around Luke 10, where Jesus sends out the 72 with the instructions to ‘find people of peace’ -those people who are open to you and the message- and stay there, with the instructions of ‘eat what is put before you’… (Good news if you like your food!) -the idea of food/welcome/hospitality- and talked about friends, colleagues, family about building relationships with people who aren’t yet Christians, a challenge to be hospitable people, invite people around for meals, go out for beers…
-Pray for us as individuals and us corporately as Churches, that we maybe good at building new relationships, being hospitable, -accepting the hospitality of others-

The passage talks about healing the sick, and said that too often Church has become very good at doing a sympathetic face and empathising… a challenge to offer to pray for people; a challenge for us as Christians to be expectant and not defeatist-

Interestingly Si pointed out that it is more often the Christians who have more hang ups about praying for people than people have about being prayed for…
-Pray us all as Christians that we would have  greater boldness in us to offer to pray for people.
-Pray to for us as Christians and as local Churches to be expectant (and not defeatist) that God is able to heal, speak and touch lives…

And lastly the passage talks about proclaim the kingdom of God, opportunities to speak…
-Pray for greater boldness to speak, to seize the moment…

Also a prayer for those of us, who are struggling at the moment, maybe those who feel discouraged, or their faith feels a bit dry, hold our brothers and sisters in your prayers today, that God may inspire, encourage and soak in his Holy Spirit those struggling today.

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