My last blog was about the church's new women's meetings, Women after God's own heart. This wonderful series of meetings enable women to meet together and learn from each other and be encouraged and inspired. Our meetings are every two months, approximately, the latest one being in January. the theme was "Dwelling in the secret Place" and the text Luke 10: 38 - the story of Martha and Mary.
The first speaker was Toyin Jama
Martha welcomed Jesus into her house as we welcome Him when we believe and trust in God. Mary was sitting and listening to Jesus to hear his teaching. Traditionally women did not sit with their guests. Sometimes we have to go against our "traditions" and step outside the box, so to speak.
Martha was distracted with the preparation of the meal, but Mary was sitting at Jesus' feet listening to what he had to say to her. Naturally Martha was not very pleased with her sister.
We are all "wired" differently. Not everyone's ministry is in the same area.
John 11 - Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead. It is only at the feet of Jesus that we hear His words, hear him speak and you are able to receive wisdom. We receive refreshment, refocus and re-energise only at his feet.
Do not get distracted. Re-prioritise your life. Plan your time with God . Declutter!
Joshua 3: 5 - "Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will amazing things among you".
Get rid of bitterness, hurt etc - get help if needed.
Prophetess Deborah led the next talk
We are nothing without God. We develop a perception of who we are in the secret place. David had strong faith in God. Samuel anointed David. Not the eldest or the best looking son. 1 Samuel 16: 7 - "Man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart" You might not look the part, but God sees our hearts. Our focus must be on God. God is for us. We all have experience of feeling rejected and ignored by family, friends, work colleagues etc. It is the devil's lies. He puts negative thoughts in our minds and therefore things to make us feel we are unloved. GOD LOVES US ALWAYS. DO NOT BELIEVE SATAN'S LIES.
David knew God would never forsake him. God "became" his parent. The Holy Spirit is a parent to us.
"Those who trust in me will never be put to shame".
even when David had Saul after him, he still trusted in God. When he was caught in adultery with Bathsheba he immediately repented. Psalm 51
Proverbs 3: 5 and 6
Fear of other people is a form of idolatry
Jeremiah 31: 33
We can take in false doctrine etc. We need the holy spirit of God to keep us in all truth. Come Holy Spirit.
Laurai spoke next
Abide in the shadow of the almighty. The Lord himself is your cover. He is your all in all. You are hid in Christ. In the storms of life he is your hiding place. when all around you is falling apart, he will keep you standing. El Shaddai - He supplies ALL our needs.
Jesus is our anchor in the "choppy seas" of life.
Abide in Him - dwell in the secret place of the most high. God wants to have an intimate relationship with us. "Seek first the kingdom of God .... Matthew 6:33
Be careful whom you associate with. Spend more time with God then you will become more like Jesus. Galatians 5: 22 - 23 the fruits of the spirit.
You may not be satisfied with where you are. there is much more. Same old is not enough. We need to claim the "mountain". At the base there are the crowds, familiarity, we will have relationships with people we like more but if we want more of God, we need to leave the "base". We need to move and "climb the mountain".
In the animal kingdom, Hinds are lighter than stags therefore they can scale greater heights. We need to shed baggage and travel light, Lay down strife, bitterness, back biting, envy, jealousy - be as light as a hind. LAY IT DOWN.
As you go up higher and higher, there will be less and less people. It can be a lonely walk, humanly speaking but God is always with you. The atmosphere becomes fresher and it becomes harder to breath because you are in fellowship with the holy spirit. He will keep you warm. Up the mountain you will see greater and wonderful things. In Revelation, John saw amazing things.
James 1: 2 - 4 have patience
David was amounted as king as a young man. Joseph had his vision 14 years before it was fulfilled. We need to wait upon the Lord.
1 Corinthians 4: 7 - we have treasure in earthly vessels. You may be "cast down" but not destroyed. DO NOT ABORT YOUR PURPOSE.
Nothing escapes our God. Ask God when we need to learn from our difficulties.
Dying to self - Romans 12: 1 and 2
"If anyone will come after me he must take up his cross and follow me".
The cross was a instrument of execution which has been co-opted by Christians. We need to "nail" to that cross all selfishness, self-centredness, licentiousness etc.
Romans 15: 3
Malachi 3: 2 and 3
We are priests until God - a Royal Priesthood and a holy nation.
We will be refined and purchased. Refining purifies gem stones. We are refined in the flames.
1 John 3: 2
Genesis 2: 25
Isaiah 40: 30 and 31
Living the Christian life is impossible in your own strength. you cannot live outside the grace of God.
For the most part the views expressed in this blog are those of the speakers at the meeting. If you want to comment on any of the above, please do so through the contact pages. In any event I suggest reading the blog and meditating upon the bible verses. May God bless you.
This was a wonderful, inspiring meeting. It begun with a feast of excellent sandwiches, coffee and cake. Then it was down to business. Below are my reflections and impressions of the event. All views expressed, unless otherwise stated are my own. I pray they will be a blessing to all readers. There will be a new style of women's meetings starting on 7 July. More details coming very soon!
It’s a Lie
2 June 2018
1st Speaker – Christine Oteh Lewis
1st lie – Eve believed the first lie – that the fruit of the Tree of Life would not result in death and that disobeying God would not have consequences.
Adam blamed God and the woman (Eve). He (Adam) refused to take responsibility.
2nd lie – God cursed women
God only cursed the earth and the serpent. NOT US!!! [Genesis 3: 14 & 17]
Knowing the truth will set us free from guilt. We no longer have to live in the darkness of guilt but in the light of God’s love
God Poetess – Patricia Morris’ blog
2nd Speaker – Patricia Morris
Mark 5: 25 - The woman with the issue of blood
Jesus healed her when she “touched the hem of his garment”. We were reminded that we sometimes only “touch the hem if his garment” instead of really getting to know Jesus as our friend and Lord. The woman was only fully healed in mind, body and spirit when she met and spoke to Jesus and established a connection and relationship with Him. Not when she just brushed past him. She told Jesus the “whole truth”, not just the edited highlights or the comfortable, culturally acceptable areas of her problems. She told Jesus everything and thus was healed both physically and mentally. Truth is uncomfortable. Jesus gave us his whole body (by dying on the cross) to make us whole and bring us back into fellowship with him.
Several people shared their “truths”. I learned to accept other’s truths, even if they are unpalatable or uncomfortable. They are that person’s truth, not mine. I need to accept that.
3rd Speaker - Tiwa King
She read this very moving Psalm and then shared her truth and how God has been with her throughout. People believe they are not loved. A big lie! God loves everyone.
The meeting was very moving, inspiring and encouraging. Almost everyone shared something of their truths, asked questions and encouraged and supported each other. That is what we women do!
What a wonderful day this was! The young people hosted a Jumbo Sale which didn't involve any elephants or aeroplanes, but did have loads of wonderful things for sale and plenty of cakes! There was a wonderful barbeque, a bouncy castle, stalls selling cakes, books, children's clothes, toys and other items, such as make-up bags. Enjoy these pictures. If you were not there, you missed a superb event. Thanks to Tosin Smith and all the young people of the church, Sharon, Theresa, Icilda, Dee and others who helped make this event so memorable and wonderful. We thank God for the superb weather also.
On Saturday 28 April, Tosin and me went to Wood Green, outside the Vue Cinema to sell cakes, many of them home made. The weather was freezing but not actually pouring with rain, which was a plus!
We set up our table and placed our cakes on it. We then talked with passers by and asked them if they wanted to buy some cakes in aid of our youth group.
We had some interesting conversations with two groups of young people both of whom told us they were scared and frightened after the recent shooting in Tottenham.
Two ladies, not known to each other, bought cakes and went away. Just as we were packing up, they returned and bought more! They said their respective spouses liked them so much they wanted more. It proves people like home made cakes.
We gave out several tracts and explained why we were selling cakes and shared the gospel with them. We also gave out welcome cards with the church's details on it, to encourage people to come. So please pray those people come to our church.
I am normally a shy person, who finds any form of evangelism frightening, but God gave me boldness that day and enabled me to talk with people and thoroughly enjoy the experience. I encourage you who read this blog to join us next time. Check in with the home page and the "Coming Soon" area for details.
Today is Good Friday and we had a wonderful service. This was in spite of the overhead projector not working and there being no musicians. Undeterred, we had a fantastic time singing songs, interspersed with readings, reflecting Jesus' death on the cross. I realised once again that Jesus died for me and if that was all that had happened, and Jesus had stayed dead, he would most probably have been forgotten or become like one of the Ancient Greek Philosophers, remembered only by Classists, intellectuals and listeners to Radio 4. Instead He is our savour and Lord and founded a global faith community spreading all over the world in every country. Praise God for Jesus.
We will be meeting again on Sunday to celebrate Jesus' resurrection. If you can, join us. There will be Easter Eggs for the children. See you then!
This Sunday (4th March) was the first Sunday I have taught Sunday Club since April last year. My class have grown up a bit since I last saw them but are just as nice. I taught them about Abraham's calling by God to on his journey to the land of Canaan which he and his descendants had been given by God. It must have taken a great deal of faith for Abraham to leave the familiar town of Ur and go on a journey without knowing the destination. I wonder if I would have been so brave.
Of course, most of us will not be in Abraham's position, but the lesson drawn from this story is that we can and should trust God for everything, even when we don't know the full story or, in Abraham's case, the destination. Trust is the key in this story and one which applies to us all.
I look forward to telling the children the next part of the story.
As I mentioned in my previous post, I am back. I attended the service on Sunday last, 4 February, and was a bit bemused to find that, when the service started at 11am, there was hardly anyone there. The service started with a wonderful worship session, with lots of songs with a message of surrender and submission to God's will. This worship session prepared us for the message that followed, which was based on Isaiah 55, which starts "Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters" and goes on to ask us to buy wine and milk without money and cost". My thinking on this passage is that this refers to spiritual wine and milk. Wine represents the luxuries and the milk represents the basics of life - in other words, if we follow and obey God, He will bless us abundantly with good things, not just the essentials (milk) but also the extras (wine).
The speaker (Rev Ige from Haringey United Church) said that the water and food mentioned represent that which we need to sustain life. Not only actual food and water but spiritual food, as described above. As Jesus speaks of in the gospels, he provides "living water". Rev Ige also referred to Rev 21:6 where Jesus' words echo those written in Isaiah. We need the word of God, and should study it every day. The bible shouldn't be a closed book to us. We were urged to study it regularly.
He also said that when bad things happen to us, we should not ask ourselves "why me" but instead think about what lessons we can learn from what has happened to us and pray for a solution.
Just before the sermon (which followed communion) more people materialised. They had missed the blessing of the worship part of the service, and therefore missed out and most probably got less from the message than those of us who were there through the whole service.
I implore everyone to make a special effort to (to coin a phrase) get to the church on time and you will be guaranteed a blessing from the worship and the message.
See you there!
I have returned to Westbury so watch this space for news, reviews of events held at the church, my thoughts and more.
Last Saturday was a truly wonderful day. Firstly the sun shone. Secondly the youth, led by Grace Smith, hosted a wonderful afternoon of fun for all the family. The parents baked cakes and brought food (chicken wings, crisps, scotch eggs etc). On one stall, the youth painted the faces of the children. On another stall they sold cakes and painted biscuits with loads of icing, "hundreds and thousands" as well as other brightly coloured sugary embellishments. They all looked wonderful.
Outside the young danced to hip hop music and served more cakes etc to passers by. it was a truly wonderful event which I thoroughly enjoyed.
Sadly there were few visitors and even fewer members of Westbury who visited it. It was very disheartening for the children and even more disheartening for the cause they were raising funds for, which is Comic Relief. If anyone watched the TV show on Friday, and came to our young people's event on Saturday, they will know which one was better - Westbury's! If you were not there you missed a treat. Attached is a slide show of pictures I took at the event. Next time the youth put on an event, please make sure you come and support them. You know it makes sense.
This year began with a wonderful new year service on 1 January. After the service we discovered that, sadly, Kehende Emmanuel had died. Arrangements for his funeral are in hand. I have no further details.
At the beginning of February, we had the sad news that Herbert Aubert has passed away. He will be sadly missed. His cremation will take place at Southgate Crematorium on Friday 17 February at 1.30pm. He was a lovely man. I had the privilege of knowing him ever since I first came to Westbury, which was in 1993. He was a deacon for many years and served our God well over those years. He was responsible for maintenance of the church and was its caretaker until ill health forced him to step down. Even when he was frail he would still turn up every week to assist the cleaning team. May God rest his soul. My prayers are with his family at this time.
On a somewhat happier note, we had a fabulous Women's Breakfast in January, the first for the new year. This event was such a blessing to all who attended, not least for the wonderful breakfast cooked for us by Calvin and his team. Thanks to them and to Sharon and Christine for all their hard work.
We cannot know what the future will hold for us as individuals or as a church, but we do know that God is with us throughout every second of our lives and we can and should trust in Him completely for everything. So, whether you need a new job, home, or His healing touch he will provide all your needs according to his purpose.
May all who read this blog have a truly wonderful, fantastic 2017.
God bless you.
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