Sunday, 14 February 2010

Worship matters!

One of my favourite quotes from John Piper goes something like this: ‘Our aim in mission is to bring the nations into the white-hot enjoyment of the glory of God,’ Oh yes! That IS what it is all about, the mission of the church, our personal witness, the declaring of the gospel – in fact all our endeavours should be towards that end.

The obvious thing about this aim is that you’ve got to know something about the white-hot enjoyment of God & His glory if you’re going to pass it on, and unfortunately there are too many Christians who have lost the capacity to marvel at the majesty of God. It just all too easy for our lives to get cluttered and our devotion to Jesus weakened – and we’re the worse off for it. Sam Storms in his book One Thing says this: ’Worship is eminently practical because adoring and affectionate praise is what restores our ultimate value. It exposes the worthless and temporary and tawdry stuff of this world. Worship energises the heart to seek satisfaction in Jesus alone.’

So, away with dull devotion! You can call us a happy-clappy church any time – and we’ll take it as a compliment! And I think I know what I’m going to preach about next Sunday!

Have a great week,



Sunday, 7 February 2010

Your Kingdom Come!

I have been encouraged to pray some big prayers lately! Some of that encouragement has come from the outstanding prayer times we have been having as a church lately. For a year or two now, we have been meeting at 6:30am Friday mornings for an hour of prayer, (all welcome!) and something has happened as we’ve come into this new year; we’ve stepped up a gear! We’ve been enjoying God’s presence in a quite remarkable way and have felt provoked to pray big prayers.

This morning Marcus preached very simply on the subject of healing, making the point that Jesus healed people – A LOT! And then we prayed some big audacious prayers for people to be healed (you can download Marcus’ preaching online).

Meanwhile I have been studying the Book of Revelation quite a lot recently as I prepare to teach on the subject to the Leadership Training group, and that has also encouraged me to pray big prayers, because there we get to see how things really are; how Jesus has triumphed and what his great victory through his death and resurrection has achieved. Nothing will ever be the same again! Jesus has changed the shape of history forever! He has redeemed the lives of all who put their trust in him, given us an eternal hope & future, defeated death and cast down every demonic force in the universe. And he has started to reign – now!
So when we pray “Your Kingdom come!” as Jesus taught us to do, it’s not just a wistful longing for paradise, it’s a bold prayer that the reign of King Jesus will break out here and now in the present, causing lives, homes, families and communities to be wonderfully transformed, sicknesses healed, people set free from addictions and fears, because that’s what Jesus does – that’s what his victory has accomplished!

Your Kingdome come! Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven!

Have a great week!