Posted by: gracesheffield | September 20, 2008

30 days

This is the website that Anne mentioned last week if you want to continue praying through Ramadan

 http://www.30-days.net/

Posted by: gracesheffield | August 27, 2008

‘Summer’ Highs and Lows

Been away for 3 1/2 weeks so not much background activity on the blog but things usually pick up from now around Grace F. So how was your summer?

Posted by: gracesheffield | July 19, 2008

Something for the summer

Last week we brainstormed what it might mean to “love our brothers and sisters”.  It wasn’t the first time we had thought about what it might look like to be a loving community, and I am sure it won’t be the last.  So much of the Christian life is about being reminded what Jesus has done, what we have become “in Him” and how he calls us to live now.
 
Here is a reminder of the results of the brainstorm….
 
Loving each other / our brothers and sisters would include…
 
Praying for each other,
Meeting each others needs
Getting to know each other so we know each others needs
“Loving our neighbours as we love ourselves”
Giving money
Encouraging each other in our faith and in truth.
Gently challenging each other
Forgiving one-another
Being a supportive network in practical ways and also just by “being there”
Putting people before ourselves
Sharing / giving things / gifts
Being committed to each other through thick and thin
Not judging each other
Not expecting perfection from each other
Not hating each other (from 1John)
 
Remember, this sort of behaviour is what it means to “walk” as Jesus walked.  Living out some of these things is evidence that God lives in us!  It is him manifesting himself in us.  How exciting is that?!  What a great calling!
 
We have already begun what usually turns out to be a disjointed time over summer as people are away.  We may not see each other on Sundays, but why not think about how you can live out / manifest some of the things mentioned above in the next few weeks?  Not being around on Sundays does not make it impossible to carry on “loving each other” does it?…  If you’re short of ideas of what to do, then start praying and ask God what he would have you do and why not just ask people how they are doing and what they need!
Posted by: 00ds | July 16, 2008

Feel powerless on Zimbabwe – do something now

Courtesy of CAP –

In the last week a small but significant dent was made in the government’s policy of destitution. Gordon Brown removed the immediate threat of deportation hanging over the approximately 11,000 Zimbabweans refused asylum in the UK.

At Prime Minister’s questions, Gordon Brown said the government is “actively looking at what we can do to support Zimbabweans in this country who are failed asylum seekers, who cannot work and who are prevented from leaving the UK through no fault of their own.”

Whilst he and the Foreign Office have been actively advocating regime change, the Home Office and UK Borders Agency have just as actively been trying to starve thousands of people back to Zimbabwe. One arm of the UK Government wants to build the capacity of exiled Zimbabwean civil society, but another arm is working hard to denigrate the skills of the future of leaders by making them destitute and banning them from working. It is tragic that it has taken the gruesome events in Zimbabwe to force the government to think again about its policy.

QUICK ACTION!
While this is in the news this is an excellent time for you to contact the Home Secretary, Jacqui Smith. We have a special website that gives you a template and automatically emails it to her. Please take few minutes to do this here.
Also if you also have time, write to the Foreign Secretary to make the point to him that Britain’s foreign policy interests and responsibilities are best served by letting Zimbabweans work. Do that here.
Thank you for your efforts,
Strike while the iron is hot.

Alan Thornton
(Church Action on Poverty)

PS. If you want to know what destitution is like read this week’s blog from Revd Canon Nick Sagovsky, of Westminster Abbey, who is living on the food and income of somebody refused asylum.

Posted by: 00ds | July 11, 2008

1 John Summary for kicking around

 

1 John – My personal v quick summary to be kicked around by others!

 

The good news of the word of God made flesh in the God/Man Jesus who dealt decisively with the sin/evil of the world calls us to confess our lovelessness and wrongdoing and walk the way of Christ. In Jesus God is shown to be a God of light and love and the way of believing/living out the continuing enfleshing of this good news is to love one another, to shun darkness and walk in light. Any claim* which denies this Jesus is a denial of God, any teaching which does not focus on believing/living in the way of Jesus/Love is a denial of God. The scope of who is in the light is about who follows in his way of love. In our life, walking the love way of Christ we are part of and actors in the unfolding story of the dawning of light, life and love and the death of darkness.

 

* The phrase if you ‘claim’ comes up a lot. Perhaps those who are anti Christ make strong claims to be real followers of him yet don’t walk like him, even though claiming not to sin, in fact they walk in darkness/not in love
 
1 jn 1v6 If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth.
1 jn 1v8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.
1 jn 1v10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.
1 jn 2v6 Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.
1 jn 2v9 Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates his brother is still in the darkness.
Posted by: marklawrenson | July 10, 2008

Trying not to love the world

Thanks Anne for your fabulous leading on Sunday and Kev for your teaching. Also a thanks to Schof for setting up this website.

Just a question after Sunday that I would be very grateful for anyone’s wisodm on:

1 John says, “do not love the world or anything in the world.” What does it mean? Can I still love books and football and beer and film? I know some people have interpreted to mean that you can’t (esp. beer). Kev said that “the world” is the structures of the world in opposition to God. What are those structures today?

Any thoughts would be most welcome.

Posted by: gracesheffield | July 7, 2008

1 John and Narnia

Sunday (06/07/08) got me thinking –

‘Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in him and you, because the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining’ 1 John 2 v 8

In Jesus something in the cosmos, the whole fabric of the world and in me has changed. The God who is light and love has broken into our lives and there is a new dawn. A dawn of light and love that we now experience and carry with us out into the darkness. Its not about special knowledge or practices, its not just a ‘spiritual thing’. Its something that you can see and feel in the way we love each other. Gods love is coming to fruition as we  walk as Jesus did, in love.

This verse reminded me of a great bit in CS Lewis’s The lion the Witch and the Wardrobe where the snow starts to melt. Spring is coming because of Jesus, things once dead are coming back to life (eternal life). This is bad news for those who prefer and profit from the frost but it is indeed good news for all creation – if we will just confess our cold hearts and embrace his grace, forgivness and restoration.

If I am to let this little light of mine shine and not hide it away, if I am to be brave, wise and couragious I need to remember all this for truly, in Jesus and now in us, ‘the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining’

What a story to be caught up in, to be part of, to play a part in….

Posted by: gracesheffield | July 6, 2008

Welcome to the new Grace Sheffield weblog

So what would you like to see on here?

Click on ‘comments’ below to leave a suggestion

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