Sunday, 30 December 2007

Some highlights of 2007

Its been a great year, hard at times but much to give thanks for:

  • Sitho becoming an elder and the church growing in her diversity.
  • Craig calling for Joe Kerr & then Joe King to come into membership on Sunday 1 April ... a classic moment perfected by his innocence.
  • Being in Zimbabwe with 13 other RFC people - a great team to share the experience with.
  • Being with another 20 RFC people at the Brighton conference - pure indulgence.
  • My hilarious debut with Radio Berkshire - I still get cold shivers remembering it!
  • Travelling with David Devenish to Crimea, and the people I met at the Islamic Conference.
  • Being asked the name of our church by someone we took to Newday - proof that we are involved in our local community!
  • RFC Tri Team breaking 1:15 barrier at Thames Turbo Sprint Race.
  • Having a bigger staff team and getting a study back again.
  • Averaging over 200 people on a Sunday morning.
  • Terry Virgo preaching with us and the elders having lunch with him.
  • Other churches using our facilities for meetings - we are growing up.
  • Annual church weekend away Soft Ball match - 'Old Dogs' drew with the 'Young Pups' - very helpful on the church unity front.
  • Numerous babies being born ... the creche was getting way too quiet on a sunday morning.
  • RFC breaking even finanically - I hope...

Monday, 24 December 2007

Teams, Nativities, Shepherds and Magi

Yesterday was the last Sunday meeting of the year (apart from the all important church brunch next week!) and I turned up at the same time as the set-up crew. For the 51st time this year the PA gear was rolled out, chairs moved, floors swept and the urn filled. Banners were attached to the fence, creche toys put out, flags unfurled. Team banter was ever present and a genuine desire and joy to serve was in evidence. Just being with those guys was good for my soul.

Our annual nativity play was a triumph of: #1 Impromptu chaos; #2 Unswerving committment to the bible; #3 The church family enjoying the truth of the Christmas story! Scott preached a great message on faith & worship based on the response of the shepherds (poor, uneducated) and the magi (rich, educated) to their respective revelations. I can only hope my response to Christ over this holiday period will in some small way imitate theirs!

We also had a few new faces with us and some old ones - and the news of a new arrival - Emily Grace Burt arrived during the service, 9lb 1 oz ... thankfully at the Royal Berks.

Saturday, 22 December 2007

Sucking marrow

The end of another year and I have a treasury containing successes; also rans; a few no shows and a scaterring of disappointments. But let's stick with the highlights:
I love my wife and children more than I did at the beginning of the year. Success in that I feel I have gained ground personally, I understand myself better and helped others to grasp the Gospel harder.

But most of all, success in the sense that I have gotten to our know our heavenly Father better; I can see his throne much clearer; I have a firmer grasp that Jesus reigns ... and my conviction has deepend that His church was worth giving another year of my energies to.

My children have continued to grow up, needed new shoes, new clothes and new ideas. Our grass kept growing, kept needed mowing ... life keeps on turning, moving.

The advance to 'the eternal age to come' continues, each moment we move ever nearer. This I find exciting, scary, sad & happy, all at once. But one thing I do know, I want to suck the marrow out of the bones of each and every day, Jesus did!!!