You Can Do This.

My blogging has been quiet for a while, I have not stopped writing just not blogging . Expressing myself in other ways has given me less time to blog . Writing a prayer diary each evening has become a part of my daily routine. It’s a colourful private place full of drawings thoughts feelings and prayers.
I have also been studying with the spurgeons college . The study skills course is a non qualification course learning to write essays and improve my writing skills all focused around the New Testament . It’s great place to learn and equip myself for future learning .
Why the studying ?
God is calling me ; sending me in different direction and it’s confusing . I can’t yet blog about it as I can’t make sense of it in my own head let alone put pen to paper.
I think I know what’s going on and where I might be going , but it does all seem a little impossible and at the same time exciting and a tiny bit possible.
Today with the text books left at home I learnt so much; I am buzzing inside. Excited and yet again amazed by how God just does amazing things.
Today we ( me and my hubby ) visited a local church . A beautiful church build in the 1930’s only about 11 miles from my home. The church was as beautiful on outside as it was inside. It’s located in a area of social housing and completely different area to the church I regularly attend.
When We walked in instantly I loved it and felt as if God was saying to me these are the people I want you to work with, pray with and be alongside them as the journey through life.
Today the people in this beautiful diverse little church gave me the confidence to follow what God is asking of me.
The congregation were so excited to see us and welcome us to their church. Keen to make us welcome in a beautiful genuine way.
Their faith seemed earthy and very connected to each other and the space around them.
The Pianist was truly amazing, at the start of the service she took it upon herself to preach from the pulpit and reminded us to use the gifts given to us by God. Their was no hiding her gift and she certainly practised what she preached. Gods loved flowed from her fingers to the piano in the music she played. With a mysterious grin she added a honky tonk feel to the hymns . Deliberately slowing the music down and than speeding us up.  Everyone just sang and smiled.
This small diverse congregation each gave something to the service , a warm welcome, making the coffee, entertaining the children , giving out notice sheets and reading the prayers .
The visiting clergy taking the service just went with the flow as we all worshiped and prayed together in a jumbled way.
And I for the first time I said to myself “ You can do this” I am being called to these people.
I felt blessed and privileged to be with them today, hearing their stories and sharing coffee and a biscuit with them.

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Thy Kingdom Come.

Holiest places: pray for all those making a difference to the lives of our most vulnerable children.
“Save The Children” helped 22.1 million children in 2016

I pledge to pray for families; children in the care system and those involved in adoption.
When I first read on the “Thy Kingdom Come” website find some extreme places to pray and film yourselves doing it. I thought of all the beautiful places I could pray: high on a mountain, in a darkest cave, under water in the depth of the sea, riding my bike through the countryside.
When I read it again I realised that I can see God’s beauty and creation in all of these places.
But to others these are not places of beauty but are the extremes of their lives.
The forgotten families and children of our society, often out of sight and unnoticed.

Dear Father God.

I Pray for the charities; churches that support foster and adoptive children.
Wrap struggling families and churches together to offer support where it’s most needed.
Bless those who put ideas into action to make a positive difference in lives of our children.
Shine your light of love so brightly in me that others can see it to.

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Amen.

 

The less we look with our eyes – the more we will see.

Day 23- lose – lent challenge 

Everything has a home, the keys live in the top draw of the telephone table , my bike lock lives in the basket of my bike.
The dog lead belongs in the draw with all the dog stuff, and the tv remote control lives on the shelf under the telly.
All these things have a home a place to keep them, so I and others know where they are.
So why can’t I find any of them when I need them, it’s because I don’t put them away in the right place.
It’s frustrating for me and even more frustrating for my husband as I all seem to do is look for things I have not put away , it’s a good job I can call my phone or I would be constantly looking for that ( this does cause problems if I put it on silent ).

For someone that looses everything, how did I find my faith and allow god to be part of my life.
When I look for my keys I run around using my eyes trying to remember the last time I had them , God has always been with me never lost , just waiting patiently for me to work it out .
Instead of running around, I stopped and kneeled closed my eyes and looked with my heart and prayed .

Jeremiah 29:13

You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.

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Faith is changing me.

Day 22 – faith – lent challenge .

The lent course at church suggested this week we write a prayer. So here it is my prayer

Dear lord god.
I am truly grateful that I am able to pray and that you hear my prayers .
Your voice is a comfort to me , today I pray for those that are yet to find you.
I ask that you light a path for them, open doors that where once closed
Let them feel your love and grow in faith.
Teach us o lord how we can reach out to those yet to find you.
Help me choose the right words to say to them
Equip me with the knowledge to see these people and through your eyes.
Forgive me when I am judgemental .
Let my love for you shine out so brightly others will see it.
Your paths are illuminated with love.
Teach me to take your paths into the darkest of places and share your light and love .
Amen.

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Sowing seeds of love

Day twenty one – patience – lent challenge 

The evening are getting lighter and each evening I spend time with my seedling , picking them out , pinching them , training them .
Separating each plant from the crowded seed tray , making each one a individual , giving them the room to grow , a chance to get its roots down , to find nourishment and grow strong and flower .
I give my plants all they need to grow , they all look the same , but each one is a individual it’s not just down to me if they grow each seedling has its own strengths and weaknesses just like us.
If my seeds that I sow don’t grow I sow again, if I sow a hundred seeds but only two fruit that that’s a success.
But next time a sow I might just change my technique slightly to encourage more growth and maybe produce more fruit. Not all seeds are the same but all require love and patience to grow .

Jeremiah 29:11 the message

I’ll show up and take care of you as I promised and bring you back home. I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.

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Hospitality is love

Day sixteen  – lent challenge – Hospitality 

Entering a church opening the old doors gives feels me with wonder , what’s inside what will it feel like , walking into church feeling the spirituality of it, the high ceilings that call you to look upwards , the silence and stillness, escaping form the hustle and bustle of the modern world. I place to pray and ponder to be alone but not be alone .
I recently visited a church that seemed to be more about the brand of coffee it was serving than about a place a worship.
It was a place of high tech audio equipment , screens on every pillar, microphones, drum kits, computers and open plan offices and a coffee shop, looking upward the eye was drawn to the cables weaving their way in and out of the pillars.
Coffee was served with a smile and brought to the table but where was god ??
I found myself trying to pray trying to connect with something anything but nothing was their the experience was cold and in need of love, god was missing.

Hospitality is so much more than a branded cup of coffee, hospitality is love , god is love , the lady’s that make coffee each week in our church and at church events are gifted in conversation welcoming smiling , washing up, working in the back ground often unseen but so very valued, they don’t sell a branded coffee , they share and show what it is to be loved by god.

Perhaps this is the moment you were created for” Esther 4:14.

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Pray to close the gap

Day thirteen –  lent challenge – hunger
We live in a area of mass expansion , the village I grew up in has become a town , a place where Strangers live , a place where I no longer say hello and know many of the person I meet and it’s somewhat lost it’s community as it gets divided up further and further.
The schools are over subscribed and our infrastructure is buckling under the strain of mass development many local people live in poverty .
Some of the congregation of our church where born in a village and find themselves living in a ever growing town almost oblivious to the expansion and the way lives have changed for the people living and working around them.
Yet in our town people will be hungry , mums will be going without food to feed their children , the food bank becomes a vital support for families without enough money to buy basics.
People we pass in the street are anonymous to us, we are blind to them often refusing to believe that in our town people are hungry and living in poverty.IMG_5554
Just because we live a good life in a beautiful location we need to keep our eyes open and help those in need on our doorsteps.
We need to build stronger communities, stop hiding in our church buildings and loose the fear of meeting ordinary local people , listen to people around us, serve them as Jesus did , understand the reality of their stories and believe that as individuals we can make a difference .

Romans 12 “11-13 – The Message  Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. Help needy Christians; be inventive in hospitality.”

Please have a look at to find out what you can do – http://www.church-poverty.org.uk/