Posts Filed Under: devotion

CLC Learning Together Media

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We are passionate about Jesus and committed to staying teachable.  We want to learn from Him, through His Bible, and each other.

Here’s some help, CLC style, so you can ponder and meditate with your ears open to Him, one eye on the pages of your Bible, from our learning times together:

Title/Series Contributor Recording Notes
Faith is just Trust KC audio online
Vision – Realising Revelation & Action KC audio online
Believe & Be Baptised KC audio PDF
Poured Out, a Life of Serving KC audio PDF
Tim’s Sending Sermon Tim Anderson audio
Pressing Ahead Roy Wheeler audio
Matthew 9:19/Open Bible Tom C. & CLC audio
You Can’t Be Serious Stephen C. audio
Fear or Faith Tim A. audio
Adopted by God/in Christ Simon C. audio
God’s Identity/in Christ Luke B. audio
Sexuality LGBT P2/in Christ KC audio
Blessed/in Christ Lyn audio
Eating in Spiritual KC audio
Singing is Spiritual KC audio
Meet Jesus – Servant Liz audio
Meet Jesus – My Hero KC audio  Prezi notes
Meet Jesus – Zacheus Tim audio
Meet Jesus – Trust not Worry Tim audio
Meet Jesus – Grace KC audio
Meet Jesus – Women Ashley audio
Meet Jesus – Obedience Cashmans audio
Meet Jesus – Unconditional Love audio
Coming to Him Like a Child Tom C. notes
God’s Good News about Pain KC Prezi notes
God’s Mistake Makers – perfectionism KC audio  Prezi  notes
God’s Mistake Makers – Paul Fiona G. audio notes
God’s Mistake Makers – Abraham Andrew audio
God’s Mistake Makers – Adam Jon Harris audio
God’s Mistake Makers – Peter Cate Hall audio
God’s Mistake Makers – David Tony Hodge audio

You are invited to come and enjoy Him with us in person.

Unity and Prayer for Every Street

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We finished our first Alpha course with the Church of the Good Shepherd last month.  It was great to pray together, to make friends and work to advance the Gospel of Jesus side by side.  There is something special and precious about working together–especially in prayer and reaching out.

Praying together tonight we had folks from Arbury Road Baptist Church, The Church of the Good Shepherd and ourselves from CLC.  We walked and prayed in four groups, covering several streets as we walked and talked and looked and listened and prayed.  Some met neighbours and chatted about why we were out and about.  We prayed for a residential home for the elderly, a charity that helps those with drug addiction, called out to God for many He loves.  Some sensed God shifting something spiritual as we prayed (as if something lifted and things became easier).

I don’t have a lot of experience of different churches and denominations, but what I’m learning is that we aren’t as different as I thought and my respect and rapport is deepening.  Cool!  We’re sowing and praying and working and being family and church in Cambridge.  We have different styles, slightly different family values, different emphasis of calling,  different expressions of worship.  But we have the same Lord, the same Heavenly Father, same commission and commands.  We really are brothers and sisters–thanks to Jesus and God for choosing us and making us part of his fantastic family!

Psalm 133:1-3 is great!

v1 How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!

How nice and enjoyable it is when we work out our differences, allow Him to help us forgive and accept each other!

v2 It’s like costly anointing oil

Our time is a precious resource that we don’t want to waste.  We take seriously our commitments and we don’t enter lightly into ventures, although there is no shortage of ways to spend our time.  But there is something holy and special about praying together which is worth pursuing.

v3 Harmony is as refreshing as the dew from Mount Hermon

The comparison of the influence of brotherly love, or unity, with dew is not a forced or unnatural one. So calm, so gentle, so refreshing on the tender grain, on the young plants, on the flowers, is dew, that it is a striking image of the influences which produce brotherly love and harmony. Bible Hub.

v3 (continued) Yes, that’s where God commands the blessing, ordains eternal life.

Unity is a reward of its own.  But there’s still more.  God ensures a blessing which doesn’t stop before salvation–life.  And that’s a Life that goes on and on getting better and better without stopping!

Persevere in Prayer to Him

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Want a to learn some lessons on how to pray for your needs, your family’s needs, the needs of your friends? Here’s how we’re praying for our CLC needs. Join your church leaders and put your faith behind ours. It’s an exciting and dynamic way to enliven your communication with Father and be involved with the miracles He does!

You’ll find this is a great way to approach other prayers you bring to God as well!

see Luke 11 which puts asking for our needs in context of our relationship with God, as well as persevering in asking.  Then look at Romans 4 and Hebrews 11 and let your faith arise!

CLC Growth Related Goals:
30 adults by the end of 2013:
5 students by the end of Dec 2013
1 new professional family
3 young adults

“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” James 5:16b

CLC Finance objectives:
£36k+ income by the end of 2013.
£560 per month increase by March 2014.

Increase of £1,500 on top of current projected 2013 income of £34,500.

By March 2014 to be achieving an increase of £560 per month to meet a balanced budget in 2014.
By January 2014 to be achieving and increase of £250 per month towards this March goal.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Phil 4:6-7

Numerical Growth of CLC Central:

Believing for 8 new adults become 30 by the end of Dec 2013.  I am believing for, and praying in:

1 new professional family (2 adults), 3 new young adults, 3 new students, 1 extra to make the 30!!

“and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it” Matthew 16:18b

Student Growth objectives:

To have a community of 5 students by the end of Dec 2013

To have a community of 10 students by the end of Dec 2014.

” I have received full payment and have more than enough. I am amply supplied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent. They are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God.”Phil 4:18-19

“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matt 6:33-34

______________________

In all these prayers listen to Him and ask yourself, “what is He saying, and what am I doing about it?”

-Tim, Kevin and Lyn

You Can Hide

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Do you like to get lost? I don’t mean on a road-trip or navigating ’round London or Manchester. I mean do you like loosing yourself? Maybe it’s a hot bath with your favourite music. For me it’s a gripping novel that heightens my emotions and wakes up my imagination. Why do I always feel a little guilty about loosing myself in the world created by the author of my book.

But God’s showed me something that I see as deep and powerful! He’s made me to be strong and face the world–most of the time. But another aspects of how He’s made me includes weakness. He doesn’t berate me for needing an escape, He isn’t disappointed that you and I want to hide! He’s given us a good and healthy answer to these needs.

What’s the good and right way to escape? Where is the best place to go?

You know the answer: It’s Him, He in whom we abide, is our escape:

“But God is a safe hiding place” (refuge, stronghold) Joel 3:16

“The eternal God is your refuge, and his everlasting arms are under you.” Deut 33:27

“I will say to the Lord, “You are my ·place of safety [refuge] and ·protection[fortress].

You are my God and I ·trust [have confidence in] you.” Psalm 91:2

In our world there are so many products offered to us as respite from drudgery. Everything from holidays to chocolate are sold as indulgences as if we should embrace them all–as if they can give us what we need. My compelling novel isn’t bad, nor is a restful holiday–both could be just what our Great Physician ordered for us!

But let’s not miss the one and only true piece that fits the empty part in our hearts. This shape is unique and is only properly filled by One, by Him, by your Father and Saviour and Lord.

Why not ask Him to hide you when you next find yourself drawn to the escape of Twitter? Give Him permission to be your escape sometimes in place of that gripping novel. Sing that He’s our safe refuge, yes, but try Him on for size too! It’s another way to trust Him. He likes it when we do that.

Intimacy and connections

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I’ve heard it said that what we as humans crave is to “be known” and “to know”.  This is true in relationship with our families:  We really want to know each other, getting past defences and guards to reality and honesty.  We want to be known too.  We want someone to love us just as we are, accept us “warts an all”. Church is a place for us to practice this—accepting each other, enjoying being accepted. Of course this doesn’t always go well–so we get to exercise forgiveness and grace as well as honesty and truth. But even this isn’t where it’s all at.

sky2

We’re made for even more than community and love involving the world that we can see and touch.  Father made us to know Him.  True satisfaction and fulfilment is on the horizon and there’s a sign in front of us that points out the way labeled, “You’re Heavenly Father”.   Yes, we can be truly known by Father God Himself! The secret to loving and accepting anyone is found in the nourishment that God gives us as we accept His love.

Can’t manage being patient with those pesky hard-to-love folks?  Failing to get past those annoyances of those nearest to you?  Take it to Him and let Him fill you, feed you, clean you and love you. What’s your prayer life like?  Do you see it as interactions where you get to accept and even enjoy that He truly knows you?  Do you ponder and contemplate how He’s made Himself known to you?  Do you consider what that means regarding your fears and weaknesses, even your little hopes… and huge dreams?

wall

Often my prayers used to be withheld until some unknown time in the future when they could be tidy and I’d be good enough.  I’m realising I can be like David and pray like he did in the Psalms–trusting God with my anger, bad attitudes, raw emotion, confusion–the lot!

I used to toss my prayers over a huge wall that I imagined separated me from God. Daddy wasn’t far away, He didn’t put up any walls.  Jesus rose from death and the Cross to demolish any imagined or real walls!  Actually, He’s calling out to us to enjoy how near He is.

clouds-sky

Try it: whisper to Him, chuckle and laugh with Him.  Say something silly or risk being wrong in a conversation with Him.

This is my testimony of what He’s doing in me, how He’s using the Soul Revolution Experiment to bring my relationship with Him to life like never before.  Would you give it a go yourself? love and blessings, Kevin

CLC Soul Revolution Experiment info

 

Enjoyment

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I am enthused and invigorated knowing that Father has made each of us for a purpose.  It’s one of the things that marks us out as His that we know he’s prepared good works for us, we’re here to change the world for better.  Isn’t it great that with becoming Jesus followers our lives have purpose and fulfilment like never before?

But the other day I was enjoying the beauty of the sunlight sparkling across the top of the water on the Cam and I realised something.  Enjoyment.  It’s important to God.  He makes things beautiful and awesome and to be enjoyed!  I could look at a sunrise or sunset and learn how the colours and the light do what they do.  I could understand how if I knew enough.  But at least part of the reason why sunsets and sunrises (and babies, and laughter and so many other things) are beautiful is for them to be enjoyed!

God wants us to enjoy the purpose He’s birthed in us.  He wants us to enjoy His creation.  He wants us to enjoy relating to Him.   I’m looking out for other examples of his beauty, not just to say, “thank you Lord” but to take a second and enjoy.  I’m asking Him to help me to remember to include Him in this enJoyment.  I wanna say, “Wow, Dad!  The smell of this pizza is fantastic!”  or “The way that kid laughs and smiles is joyous, Pappa!”

This flows between us and our other relationships too–our families and friends, neighbours and work colleagues.  Over this Christmastime, and into 2013, I pray that we all enjoy Father more; Jesus’ purpose for us clearer than ever. But most of all we enJoy Him and our precious relationship with Him, our lovingkind Father, our Friend, our Source and Light and Hope.

Check back here to be encouraged to digest more little morsels of spiritual food.  May you find more and more nourishment for your soul from Jesus and His amazing Spirit-filled Word.

Devotion: Worthy of Trust

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When we joined together to pray in Kings College Chapel last week, Pete Greig said about the many institutions in our world have lost the trust of their people.  World-wide banks, media, recently the BBC, and even, sadly, the church.  But there is good news:  Jesus is completely faithful and worth trusting.

  • What of these truths below about Father have you experienced first hand?
  • What of these do you need Him to show you?

And what is true for  for our friends, colleagues and neighbours about God’s trustworthiness?

Psalm 89:8 Faithfulness is a key part of His nature, identity

Det 7:9 It’s one of His names in Hebrew

1 Cor 1:9 His Faithfulness beckons us to relate to Jesus

Psalm 36:5 hand in hand with His love, poetically expressed as “far reaching”

Mal 3:6Heb 13:8 God does not change

Num 23:19 God Cannot Lie

Lam 3 Brings hope and expectation

2 Tim 2 13 We fall short, He doesn’t

Zeph 3:5 He never fails (..never gives up, never runs out on us..)

plus: deliverance of Israel from Egypt, God’s promise to Abraham, Jesus work on the Cross!

And we are carrying His DNA,  So thanks to His grace, we can express His qualities to the world too.  I remember Liz’s words about CLC here.  At 0:43 in she says, “..we have staying power”.  Yes!  That “stick-ability” is an expression of Father’s faithfulness.

1 Thessalonians 5: 24, 2 Thessalonians 3:3, Psalm 89, Titus 1:2, Hebrews 2:6, 1 John 1:9

Check back here to be encouraged to digest more little morsels of spiritual food.  May you find more and more nourishment for your soul from Jesus and His amazing Spirit-filled Word.

Devotion: Holding Back? Learn the Lesson

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2 Chron 16:9 has an encouraging promise but a stark warning:

“For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. You have done a foolish thing, and from now on you will be at war.”

The context is about someone going into battle but failing to rely on God for the victory.  The rebuke is not for someone who has no experience of Father’s trustworthiness and goodness.  See verse 8:

“Yet when you relied on the Lord, he delivered them into your hand.”

We are wooed to trust God and let Him into our everything.  We are reminded how good He is and how He’s worth our trust.  We’ve even known His goodness and care in our lives.   But even a good God lets us suffer the consequences of our bad decisions.  It’s like the law of gravity, nothing personal just the way the universe is designed.  Father is not distant and disinterested watching these spiritual laws work in our lives.  He’s not mean and enjoying our struggle.  Remember, only a bad father would fail to discipline his child.

My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
because the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”

Hebrews 12:4-11  “My dear child, don’t shrug off God’s discipline, but don’t be crushed by it either.    “It’s the child he loves that he disciplines; the child he embraces, he also corrects.”  God is educating you; that’s why you must never drop out. He’s treating you as dear children. This trouble you’re in isn’t punishment; it’s training, the normal experience of children. Only irresponsible parents leave children to fend for themselves. Would you prefer an irresponsible God? We respect our own parents for training and not spoiling us, so why not embrace God’s training so we can truly live? While we were children, our parents did what seemed best to them. But God is doing what is best for us, training us to live God’s holy best. At the time, discipline isn’t much fun. It always feels like it’s going against the grain. Later, of course, it pays off handsomely, for it’s the well-trained who find themselves mature in their relationship with God.”

Psalm 20:6-9 is a good example to follow with both choices:  trusting God or otherwise:

Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
They are brought to their knees and fall,
but we rise up and stand firm.

Remember when you’ve trusted Father in your life and with that in mind go for it now and exercise that growing faith muscle.  Trust in the name of our Lord and you will rise up and stand firm.  If not for the promise of Him strengthening your heart, at least to avoid your challenge turning into a war.

Check back here to be encouraged to digest more little morsels of spiritual food.  May you find more and more nourishment for your soul.