Having a sense of fun is not a bad thing

Having a sense of fun is not a bad thing

I am writing this article after the first day of the Kids Club. Not surprisingly my voice is a little hoarse the day and from leading a great game of “sock hockey” as well as singing some of the great kids songs and being a little silly. Children often bring out the silly side of us, the fun loving side of us. Actually, being with children brings out the fun loving side of me and I would guess that it actually brings out the fun side in all of us.

I think it great to have a bit of fun in your life all to often we forget what it is like to have fun. There are weeks in my life when all I hear from people that I meet, is how hard life is for them, and all their problems. However, when I spend time with children I hear a different story.  I hear about the amazing possibilities in life, about the joy in their life. For children, having fun is a great and wonderful thing, they love the joy of the moment and live life to the fullest. We as adults know how important it is to have fun as a kid, but do we remember the importance of having fun in our lives as an adult. I certainly hope that we remember to have fun in our life.

Take for example Jesus; he was no stranger to having fun. True we do not have the same king of reference of Jesus laughing, like we have about Jesus crying. Although we do have plenty of occasions where he was having fun or where he was fun to be with, referenced in the Bible. For example, we know that children loved being around Jesus, in fact they flocked to Him in droves.

We know from reading the scriptures that Jesus rejoiced. In fact, there is every indication that He loved a good party, even helping to transform an ordinary wedding reception into something extraordinary by turning water into wine. In fact the religious leaders had a hard time with Jesus because he didn’t play by their rules, he was accused of having too much fun, even to the point of being called a drunk and a glutton and a friend of sinners.

Jesus was fully human and fully divine, so reason goes to say that he experienced all our human emotions including having fun. Jesus knew that we all need a balance in our life, and that having fun was part of that balance.

Begging

Begging

A photo taken in the CBD of Sydney. The people keep on going about their lives completely ignoring the person begging.

©Simon Lee 2012

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Who’s my neighbour?

Who’s my neighbour?

All around the world there are people who go un-noticed, actually more to the point ignored. We see them and because of who they are we walk around, or find any other way to avoid them. The photo above is one that I used to display at a recent bible study that I ran on the topic of the Good Samaritan. I asked the question who is it that you avoid? For some of us we avoid certain types of people, actually I think that everybody has somebody that they avoid, it is part of who we are, we have people hat make us feel uncomfortable, or they challenge us, or we simply do not get along with them.

Pause for a moment and consider whom it is that you avoid and why you avoid them, but don’t beat yourself too much for avoiding a person, we all do it. If we look at the parable of the Good Samaritan we see that Jesus tell us about the need to look out for people in need, and that we should not avoid those in need, actually Jesus had a preference for the poor and the people unable to help themselves and called his followers to look after those who were poor and in need of help. So when we look at how the Good Samaritan we see that he choose to see the need and not avoid the situation like the others, he answer the cry for help and he did all that was in his power to help in the situation.

What We Learn from Ants

What We Learn from Ants

I would like this week to share with you an article from Compassion, it has been written by Sidney Muisyo (Sidney serves as the Vice President Africa Region, Compasssion). I thought it was a fantastic article and had great insight into life in Christian community, and our life as Christians.

What We Learn from Ants

If you have ever seen an African anthill against a backdrop of one of those stunning African sunsets, you will realize that King Solomon was onto something when he challenged people to learn from the ants.(Proverbs 6:6, 30:25).

I am intrigued by what powerful lessons King Solomon — the wisest of men who ever lived, according to the Scriptures — might have learned as he gazed at the little ants busy about his palace.

Might he have observed how ants work as teams? Did he stop to wonder at how ants inherently trust each other and how they foster collaboration regardless of each individual’s size or strength?

Could he have been inspired at how ants are diligent and focused about their work, and how if something disturbs their normal rhythm they quickly regroup?

King Solomon was a mighty builder of palaces. Might he have gaped at how ants build awe-inspiring anthills without sophisticated tools? Would he not have agreed with that simple yet insightful saying from Nigeria: “The anthills are not built by elephants, but by the collective efforts of the little ants?”

I think if King Solomon were alive today, he would challenge us this way: “So you feel overwhelmed by future? And you are struggling to cope with change in an ever-turbulent environment? You want to bear good fruit and much fruit, yet you struggle to juggle limited resources? Go and learn from the ants!”

“Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven.” —Matthew 18:19, NIV

Prayer: Lord, remind us that our wisdom and our success lie not in size and individual brilliance, but rather in faithfulness to your work and being united to one another.

 

Courtesy of Compassion International: http://blog.compassion.com/what-we-learn-from-ants/#ixzz26AdtWQUf

Why We Worship the Way We Do

Why We Worship the Way We Do

During the week I found this article which made me think about what we do at church and especially in worship. The article can be found at http://www.beforethecross.com/resources/why-we-worship-the-way-we-do/

 

There is nothing more important in life than worship. We all worship something or someone. The only question is whether we will worship the right One in the right way. We want all of life to be worship to God (Rom. 12:1-2; 1 Cor. 10:31). He is worthy to receive glory and honor and power (Rev. 4:11). In particular, we want our worship services on Sunday to be pleasing to Him. To gather with God’s people on the Lord’s Day to worship at God’s throne under the authority of God’s word is our solemn duty and joyful privilege.

It’s with that supreme goal in mind that we hold to a number of values when it comes to corporate worship.

1. Glory to God – Worship is ultimately for Him. He is the most important audience at every service.

2. Edifying to God’s people – Corporate worship must build up the body of Christ. Believers should be equipped, comforted, and exhorted.

3. Understandable – New words and concepts may be introduced, but the service should be intelligible to both Christians and non-Christians.

4. Biblical – The whole service teaches God’s people, so everything—the prayers, the songs, the preaching—must be biblical. We like the saying: in worship we read the Bible, preach the Bible, pray the Bible, sing the Bible, and see the Bible in the sacraments.

5. Emphasizing the ordinary means of grace – God can work in many ways, but he has committed to being with us and transforming us through certain “means of grace.” He communes with us through prayer, through the word, and through the sacraments of the Lord’s Supper and Baptism. Our services emphasize these ordinary means whereby God promises to give us more grace.

6. Expositional preaching – The central act in the worship service is the preaching of God’s word. We believe this is best accomplished through the careful, Spirit-filled exposition of Scripture. Every sermon should flow from Scripture and proclaim the gospel of Christ’s death and resurrection.

7. Thoughtful – Every church has a liturgy (an order of service). Our service has three parts: the gathering of God’s people, hearing God’s word, responding to God’s word. We see this pattern in scripture in many places both Old and New Testament. This is also a gospel pattern: approach God in awe, see our sin, hear the good news, respond in faith and obedience.

8. Historical – The Church has been thinking about how to worship for centuries. We want to learn from our spiritual ancestors and build on their models.

9. Mixing old and new – We believe there are new songs to be sung to Jesus. We also believe there is a great heritage of church music that we should embrace. However, the most important sound is that of the congregation singing.

10. Prayerful – Our services include many different prayers. Often you will find a prayer of confession because we sin every week and need gospel mercy every week. We usually have a longer congregational prayer, which is an important time to pray for the needs of our church family and for the world.

Seeking God in our lives

Seeking God in our lives

One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.   Psalm 27:4

Where is your spiritual walk taking you?, do you know?, or is it just meandering around the wilderness/desert of our life here?

I want to share with you some interesting points about the heart of King David that I found the other day that will help you in your spiritual walk. The heart of David has been described as one after the heart of God, and we can see his hearts desire in Psalm 27:4, within his prayer to God.

There are three aspects of his prayers:

  1. That he may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of his life:
    To dwell in the house of the Lord is to be in the presence of God. In the Old testament, God’s presence resided in the temple of God. So David’s desire is to be in a continuous, close presence of God all the days of his life.
  2. To gaze upon the beauty of the Lord:
    To gaze upon the beauty of the Lord is to witness the glory of God. There is nothing more glorious than the glory of God. We often marvel at the physical things that we see, but when we experience the glory of God, our lives will be changed forever.
  3. To seek Him in His temple:
    Seeking God in his temple is to seek God and his righteousness. (Matthew 6:33)

David’s one prayer for God was to be in his presence all the days of his life, to increase his feeling of being in the presences of God, while being ever more enthralled with God presence in the world.

What is the most important thing in your life? What is that “one” aspect of your life that defines you and puts everything else into perspective? What will be your “One” Prayer to the Lord?

Blessings

Simon

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