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Coming to Him like a Child

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Tom shared how we can approach our Father with childlike boldness and freedom.  Listen to the audio here to get the stories and relational aspects that help communicate these truths.  See some bare notes below:

How do we view ourselves, judge ourselves–specifically in relation to God?

This video shows a very good endeavour to inspire bravery in place of fear of failure.  Tackling the unwillingness to take risks due to perfectionism.  This is aimed at girls, but maybe they are not the only ones who grow up thinking they need to be perfect:

Can you identify with holding back to avoid mistakes, thinking you musn’t get it wrong?

It’s so difficult to avoid being critical of others.  It’s all around our world.  When is the last time you heard a news report of a politician or teacher doing a great job?

Whether we are assessing our children’s behaviour or a colleague at work, how gracious are we?   What kind of judge am I and what does it say about how I judge myself?

Think of someone who is intensely curious about the world, who loves reading and drawing, seems to have boundless energy, and constantly comes up with fresh ideas.  Albert Einstein, Salvador Dali, Leonardo da Vinci, who were artists as well as inventors with great curiosity.  Maybe children are even better examples.  Creativity flourishes with risks, experimentation, fearlessness.

Jesus said “you must become just like a child to enter the kingdom of God” in Matthew 18:3.

Kids are uncritical

Kids are not afraid to fail

Kids get it wrong all the time

Kids know that someone else is in charge

 

Let’s remember what our Father God is like. What kind of judge is He?

Slow to anger and rich in love” (Psalm 145).

Let’s remember what Jesus is like (Matthew 9):

“As Jesus went on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector’s booth. “Follow me,” he told him, and Matthew got up and followed him.  While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and sinners came and ate with him and his disciples. When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

This is God’s grace for us. That He loves us like a Father loves his children. That’s why we need to become like children to enter His Kingdom, because we have to give up the pretence that we’ve got it all sorted. We have to accept that He’s in charge and loves us and accepts us because we know that’s we’re in the wrong. Not because we’ve got it right.

The inspiration for our teaching this term is a book called the Ragamuffin Gospel. It says:

“There is a myth flourishing in the church today that has caused incalculable harm: once converted, fully converted. In other words, once I accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Saviour, an irreversible, sinless future beckons. Discipleship will be an untarnished success story; life will be an unbroken upward spiral toward holiness.  Tell that to poor Peter who, after three times professing his love for Jesus on the beach and after receiving the fullness of the Spirit at Pentecost, was still jealous of Paul’s apostolic success.”

Another quote from Brennan Manning’s Ragamuffin Gospel says, “Often I have been asked, ‘Brennan, how is it possible that you became an alcoholic after you got saved?’ It is possible because I got battered and bruised by loneliness and failure; because I got discouraged, uncertain, guilt-ridden, and took my eyes off Jesus. Because the Christ-encounter did not transfigure me into an angel. Because justification by grace through faith means I have been set in right relationship with God, not made the equivalent of a patient etherized on a table.”

The challenge for us today, whether we’re being asked to judge someone else’s work, behaviour, or just ourselves, is to remember that we are broken, fragile people who need God’s grace. That God is God and I am not. That there is nothing we can do to make us deserve God’s love and acceptance. That we are His children. And he calls us to come to Him,

Without judging ourselves.  Unafraid.  Without cynicism.  Admitting that we get it wrong.  Knowing that He is in charge.

Steven Curtis Chapman, “God is God”

The Kingdom of Jesus

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subtitle: The Radical Challenge of the message of Jesus

I got the book from online here and below are some notes and thoughts:

” ‘Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.’ God’s Kingdom coming is when His will is getting done on earth…”  even through us, His body, His church.

One definition of the Kingdom of God is in Romans 14:

“Kingdom of God is ‘righteousness (or justice) and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit”

God Builds His Kingdom, it’s not our doing like a business or club or organisation:

John 18:36, “My kingdom is not of this world [nor does it have its origin in this world]. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would be fighting [hard] to keep Me from being handed over to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this world.”

Here’s a direct quote from the book about God’s sovereignty and our free will, and the interplay of those as in Romans 8:28:

“However, when Paul says that God works in all things, the Greek literally says ‘God in-works’ – all things. This does not mean that God makes everything happen, but that God works in everything that happens. In other words, it is like a chess player working in the moves of his opponent in order to achieve his objective. He can use your moves to manoeuvre your knight and bishop so that your king cannot move and he gets a checkmate. He has ‘in-worked’ in all things. You put your knight and bishop there, not anyone else, but the other player made use of that and worked in it according to the counsel of his will..”

So, how God works within and around our free will can be seen as:

“…the Kingdom is God as the master chess player, manoeuvring through all the affairs and decisions of individual wills and freedoms on earth to get His will sovereignly done…”

Our Vision for 2016

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CLC is invited to the Cashmans on Thursday, Feb 18th at 8pm to hear about our plan for CLCs new shape.

God invites us, like Gideon, to be brave and go with the strength we already have.

God invites us, like Moses, to know that He goes with us and all we need is in our hands
CLCs-new-shape

CLCs-new-shape 2

God and us Season to Season

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At our CLC@ lunch today we had a chance to talk together and pray about changes we’re going through. The food was fantastic, we enjoyed being together with each other and God, and it was great to have guests join us!

Some made some art, using some beautiful colours and shapes made by God in this autumn season. Enjoy

 

leaves round-bg

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” Hebrews 13:8

leaves green-bg

“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:19

leaves on orange

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven, Ecclesiastes 3:1

 

 

Introducing City Life Church

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Introducing City Life Church

New to studying in Cambridge? Looking for a new church?

Well, hi and welcome.  Let us introduce ourselves!

Jesus said that He came to bring life and life to the full. This mission is not only reflected in our name but also in what we get up to.

We believe church is about people, life and supporting people’s unique God given potential, whoever we are.

Because of this we have an accepting and empowering culture that allows anyone and everyone to come as they are and to find an encouraging place to be themselves, explore faith and to discover who they were created to be in light of a relationship with God. We’ve made it our goal since 1994 to be:

Passionate about following Jesus

Serving in our local communities

Committed to investing into students and young leaders who go on to shape the country and make a difference. Made up of local families, graduates, young people and students our history has proven this to be something we’ve achieved and continue to be about.

If you’d like to be part of something like this come along or you can stay in touch via:

facebook.com/citylifechurchcambridge

website and calendar: www.citylifechurch.net

Contact Us here

Crisis in Calais

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Justin Welby’s words ring in my ears with regards the Refugee Crisis unfolding daily before our eyes:  ‘Our response has to start with compassion and the human being and the dignity of the human being’.  He went on to say that this crisis must be tackled at an international level, but also at an individual level.

 

I want to be part of this response.

 

13th September we have our first autumn Sunday Lunch at St Andrews.  The theme is Harvest Festival and thankfulness of provision.  We decided at CLC@Home on Wednesday night that we should make this lunch a community collection point for the appeal.

 

This Wednesday night at CLC@Home we are going to be dropping invitations and a collection appeal flyer through doors in Chesterton letting people know that this is a point at which we as a community can help.  Come for soup and bring items for the collection.  We will then get things transported to Daily Bread.

 

Let’s make a difference.

 

Join us to pray.  We need to pray for Gavin (former CLCer) as the Labour shadow Secretary for international development that God would give him wisdom in his role at national level.

 

We know this is complex, and running aid down to Calais is not the main answer, but it is something we can do now until we know how we can more strategically respond for the longer term.  Please pray with us as we consider what we should be doing next as a community towards this cause.  If you have any suggestions, please also be in touch.   We can make a difference – and we will :)

 

Loving people around us and loving people afar.

 

Tim Anderson (leader of City Life)
tim@citylifechurch.net

 

Food to donate: what they always need
beans, rice, chick-peas, black beans, tracksuit trousers for men
kidney beans, green lentil jeans for men (sizes 28 to 32)
 tinned tomatoes, cooking oil, sugar, blankets, wooly hats
flour, cereal & fruit bars, gloves, slings
peanut butter, jam, sleeping bags
 honey, biscuits, crackers, bin liners
bottled water, fruit juice, tea soap, shampoo
instant coffee, hot chocolate toothbrushes, toothpaste
 herbs & spices, pots, pans & kitchen utensils
 (turmeric, chilli powder, peppercorn, toilet paper, wipes, sanitary towels
 coriander, curry, herbs) plasters. bandages

 

what they don’t need

*update* clothes are not needed anymore.  That means folks have been giving since this article was first published last week, whic h is great.

Deuteronomy 10;17-20
“For the Lord your God is the God of gods and Lord of lords. He is the great God, the mighty and awesome God, who shows no partiality and cannot be bribed. He ensures that orphans and widows receive justice. He shows love to the foreigners living among you and gives them food and clothing. So you, too, must show love to foreigners, for you yourselves were once foreigners in the land of Egypt. You must fear the Lord your God and worship him and cling to him.”

You’re invited to Sunday Lunch!

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food!

New to Cambridge or local to CB4?  It’s good to eat together.  Come and share lunch with us. Everyone is welcome.  Yes, you!  These times are are fun and forming, encouraging and edifying.  They’re about friendship and family, faith and reality.   They are once a month 12.30pm @ St Andrews Church Hall, Chesterton, Cambridge, CB4 1DH on the following dates:

 
Date/Time Menu
13th September soup & bread
18th October spaghetti bolognaise & salad
15th November lasagne

 

Welcoming Simplicity:  We’re having a very simple question each week.   We can include it in our conversations while enjoying lunch.  Nothing complicated.  A thought that is good for kids and adults alike.  Engage as much or as little as you want.  This will be low-key and pertinent for visitors who we can bring along as well.   As an example, some of our questions have been, “what do you need from God these days?” and “Where do you see God in your world?”  This can be a chance to encourage each other, talk about our God who cares and helps, what we think about God, whether we believe in Him or not, and we might pray together or commit to pray for each other through the week.

Crafts for All Ages:  we celebrate kids and family life – so there will be crafts and kids activities for after the lunch – though all ages can get involved of course!

A Song or Life Story: We love the arts and story telling, so look out for these to brighten the spirits!

Strategic, Real Faith:  Why spend our precious church time together eating?  Well, Jesus ate with his friends while He taught them to be church, and so will we.  God’s presence is powerful, and we can enjoy Him being near while we talk and eat and smile and laugh.  We believe God when He says in the Bible that “where two or more are gathered, there He is in our midst”.   Honesty, “being real” is one of our values in CLC and we think it’s something we’re good and and worth sharing.  Come join your faith with ours and see more of Father’s plan for you, me and us together.

If you’re new to Cambridge, studying or working here, we’d especially like to extend a warm invitation for you to come join us!  Come and bring some food to share, or just bring yourself and join our family time together.

 

Would you like to bring something?

The lunch is free but we believe community is about sharing and being an active part, so if you’d like to come make contact below to book a place and if you’d like to bring some food to add to the meal or can be part of washing up and the fun that takes place in the kitchen, then let us know and we’ll count you in!’

Welcome to City Life!

clc-outside

 

 

 

 

 

Book your place:  admin@citylifecurch.net  Let us know you’re coming, or just turn up!

Autumn 2015 @ CLC

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CLC @ homeWeek of Prayer

Praise Party

Parenting Course

City Life Church Camridge

Autumn 2015

 

Introducing City Life Church

Jesus said that He came to bring life and life to the full. This mission is not only reflected in our name but also in what we get up to.

We believe church is about people, life and supporting people’s unique God given potential, whoever we are.

Because of this we have an accepting and empowering culture that allows anyone and everyone to come as they are and to find an encouraging place to be themselves, explore faith and to discover who they were created to be in light of a relationship with God. We’ve made it our goal since 1994 to be:

Passionate about following Jesus

Serving in our local communities

Committed to investing into students and young leaders who go on to shape the country and make a difference. Our history has proven this to be something we’ve achieved and continue to be about.

If you’d like to be part of something like this come along or you can stay in touch via:

facebook.com/citylifechurchcambridge

website and calendar: www. citylifechurch.net

Email: admin@citylifechurch.net

 

CLC Autumn Learning

The Bible teaches that Jesus came to give life, and a new sense of identity and confidence in who we are through a relationship with Him. Join us this autumn to explore who we are ‘in Christ’ and the liberation this can bring in our lives.

Sunday Lunches

Our Meetings

At CLC our gatherings are positive, challenging and inclusive, with a simple format everybody can engage with. You’ll have a warm and personal welcome, with regularly some food, biblical thought, encouragement and discussion, music, prayer and faith building challenge. Come and be a part of it from the start!

map and info here

Testimony of Meeting Jesus — My Hero

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Through pain, through emotion, through poetry and music.  Finding the sacred in the secular.  It might seem a long winded way of getting to my experience of meeting my hero Jesus, but the qualities of the heroes who point me toward Him are either dim reflections of Him, or stronger mirrors of His fabulous loving light.

Visual and Audio

Reading this Brennan Manning quote gave me the idea to post these links as both God and Bruce Springsteen are featured.  (^;

“Grace abounds in contemporary movies, books, novels, films and music. If God is not in the whirlwind, He may be in a Woody Allen film, or a Bruce Springsteen concert. Most people understand imagery and symbol better than doctrine and dogma. Images touch hearts and awaken imaginations. One theologian suggested that Springsteen’s ‘Tunnel of Love’ album, in which he symbolically sings of sin, death, despair and redemption, is more important for Catholics than the Pope’s last visit when he spoke of morality only in doctrinal propositions.”

― Brennan Manning, The Ragamuffin Gospel: Good News for the Bedraggled, Beat-Up, and Burnt Out

Who are your heroes?  Have you experienced God’s love?  The conclusion of this talk and last slide lists some good things I’ve undoubtedly experienced in my stumbling and flawed relationship with God.  It’s cool to read about God, to hear someone else’s story, but He wants a relationship with you.  Are you enjoying Him?  What is your story of Him and His wooing of you?

love,

KC