Sunday, 19 September 2010

Making Muffins with God

Yesterday it was just me and my 6 year old daughter Grace together, so we made muffins.
It was dead easy - I bought a packet mix from ASDA and followed the instructions (just crack an egg, add milk and mix it all together!)

I loved it.

The reason I mention this is at the end of this blog.

This year there are already many things we are doing and about to do:-

Street pastors - to 'be there' at the messy times for people in a mess: starting in January - apply now if you want to be on the team - see Dave Mutch.

Boiler room (next to the Buck I'Th Vine) - to 'be there' as a place of prayer within the community - from which will flow so much more that will be inspired by God at the right time: Andrew and Adrienne are leading this up with support from others who they will be approaching - watch this space & speak to them about when it will be open.

Cafe church - to 'be there' (at Costa coffee on a Sunday once a month) chatting about Jesus & life. A different theme each month but always coffee! - 26th September is our next one at 4.30

Barnabas club - to 'be there' for each other. Listening to God and sharing what is on His heart for 2 people each month. To encourage and equip; to heal and build up - see Ruth or Karen S about venues and times and who is next!

Life groups - about to be launched at the end of this month (see Mark H if you are interested - there will be sign up lists too) - for Bible study and friendship - to share life and encourage each other: fortnightly.

Animate - a course of teaching and experiencing God in a new and fresh and intimate way. Highly recommended for those who want to re-engage with God - see Karl Williams for details.

Encounter (prayer) events - monthly alternating between worship & intercession in a different venue each month & 6am prayer gatherings (starting 25th September at McDonalds)
RiSE = intercession for the Sunday worship meeting; every Sunday 9.45 to 10.15 in E7

Student liaison - Dave & Jayne are 'there' for all students. To mentor and listen and link with.

Synergy - to reach out in mission together, achieving what we could not achieve alone. To 'go there' - see Dave Smith for more details.

Men's Curry Nights - 1st Monday each month at the Shamrat. See Russell & Mark

Teaching - This year we are exploring 3 key passages:-
October to December: Genesis 12-25 (Abraham - faith & obedience)
January to February: Luke 1-5 (Jesus - our rescuer)
March to May: Acts 1-5 (The Holy Spirit)

Our desire is to Live like Jesus - this must permeate everything we do.
Closer to God, Closer together, Closer to others.

Community Action - to 'be there' for our community. Whether painting a friend's house or joining other churches in a community action weekend in June.

Social connecting events - 1st one is 1st Saturday in October: bowling & pizza. Every month - see Graham or go to OCF events website

Other ministries opportunities are still happening:-
worship team; drama team; book & film club (see Chris M); Compassion (sponsoring a child in a community in India - see Sam Smith for details); short term mission; mentoring; & many more things

So why the muffins?
We can make muffins and produce great muffins (ours were!) but what made it great was making them with Grace.
God loves all that we are doing but more importantly He loves doing it with us. It is about His love and our love for Him above everything else. If all we do is make muffins and not love then we are a clashing cymbal.
I love making muffins not because I love muffins but because I love doing it with God and with you.
Let's live like Jesus who loved even to death, who showed us what love is all about, who was not ashamed to call us friends.

Friday, 10 September 2010

OCF - what are we thinking?

This leader's blog will be much more about what is on the horizon in OCF. Not fully developed yet but where I believe the Spirit is leading us.
Imagine living this year like Jesus! (Romans 8 v29)
Mission was the heart of Jesus ('son of David') and must be at the heart of all we do as a church (individuals together). That is why the synergy vision is still strong. That is why we are continuing with men's curry nights, cafe church, serving the community (painting homes and moving debris!).
That is why we are launching into Street Pastors (anyone interested?) - we walk the streets and claim them for Christ and be there for those who don't yet know Him.
That is why we are renting a prayer centre, a 'boiler room' in the heart of Ormskirk - to be there and not hidden away - next to the pubs.
That is why we will be serving the community with impact weekends.

Faith and obedience was a hallmark of the life of Jesus ('son of Abraham') and we cannot do this without each other. Jesus surrounded Himself with disciples and spent time with Father.
That is why we are continuing with Barnabas, with Animate/Animation.
That is also why I want to encourage 'Life groups' - 6 to 8 people meeting anywhere together fortnightly to talk about how to apply scripture to our lives, to be friends, to encourage, love and inspire one another in this one life we have (anyone interested?)
That is why we who are mature must begin to take responsibility for each other and mentor those whom God has sent our way.

Conceived of the Holy Spirit - Jesus was filled with the Spirit and only ministered with the Spirit. The Spirit that guides us into understanding, the Spirit that comes alongside us when we are struggling, the Spirit that empowers us in our witness, the Spirit who is our friend.
That is why we too must seek to be filled with the Spirit in our quiet times but also at the encounter events we will be having bi-monthly (praise, intercession, and seeking) and at the bi-monthly 6am prayer events (how full is your bucket? - what will you do about it? what can we do together?)

There are so many things that we will be exploring in OCF - who knows what the Spirit will lead us towards and what will happen? - imagine living like Jesus