Business is NOT as usual

I have been asked to give my thoughts for this year – so after pondering here they are! business is not as usual

Already many resolutions will have been broken – we are fickle, and although our intentions may be good, our flesh is weak. Thank God that He values our intentions but we need to learn to “lean” on our beloved to see them transform into lasting actions – see blog of 13th December 2014.

As we enter the New Year we revert to our routines – work, school, family life, church – our year is carved into chunks of time where certain things have to happen. This is not bad, but as believers I think we need to strongly consider that business is NOT as normal. We cannot “lean” on our schedule, our habits, our bank accounts or in fact anything that is not Jesus Himself.

Even a mere glance at the news should be enough to alert us to the increasing lawlessness, rage and fear that is rampaging across the globe.

  • The earth is groaning at a more rapid and continual rate than has been seen before – the extreme weather conditions alone during the whole of 2014 is such evidence of this;
  • Economies are straining under so many sticky plasters it’s difficult to find the real cause of the pain any longer;
  • Immorality is reaching peak levels with pornography, murder, human trafficking, slavery, paedophilia, homosexuality and theft at previously unknown depths of depravity – and increasing with such speed
  • So many families are broken, foundations are smashed to pieces, many are totally unaware of any benchmark of right or wrong;
  • Self-harming figures in the 12-13 year olds tell us that 1 in 12 children in this age bracket in the UK are systematically and daily cutting themselves through lack of self-worth and emotional pain.
  • Obesity, depression, and other mental health issues affect the majority of the western population
  • Education is rivalling finance as the prevalent god of our age where many seek to rob innocence in the name of "education"
  • As a society we pass the buck, shift the blame, and avoid responsibility believing our own rights are of paramount importance.

So, anything new under the sun? (Ecc 1:9) No, but I think when we look at the overall picture, with a biblical view of eternity, we will see that human history is heading towards its climatic peak!

Valentines Day

gods love

Even though Valentines Day has pretty awful roots with its traditions and customs originating from two of the most sexually perverted pagan festivals of ancient history: Lupercalia and the feast day of Juno Februata, many will celebrate love today with cards, flowers, champagne and special food, amongst many other romantic gestures.

I wanted to take a moment to worship and receive from our wonderful Jesus, to whom we are betrothed, and expectantly awaiting to return.

I thought I'd share with you a glimpse into my most precious relationship (there is absolutely NO sexual connatation in this). If you know Jesus, you will be able to read the following to yourself, knowing it is true.

Jesus is so fascinated by me – He gave up His glorious surroundings in Heaven to enter earth in the constraints of the flesh, just to find me.

Jesus is so passionate for me – He gave up His life to be tortured on a cross to pay for every thought and every deed that didn't line up to faithfulness.

Jesus is so committed to me – He descended into hell, conquered death, rose from the grave and ascended into heaven so that He could forever be with me.

Jesus is so captivated by me – that one glance of my eye moves Him.

Jesus is so faithful to me – He sits at the right hand of the Father in heaven and intercedes on my behalf day and night.

Jesus is so concerned for me – He sent His Holy Spirit to guide me, counsel me and enable me to live by His law, which brings me freedom to be who He made me.

Jesus is so respectful towards me – that even when I make wrong choices, He continues to love me, and lets me try my own way, but never leaves my side even when I take Him to places neither of us should go!

Jesus is so caring for me – he disciplines me to help me grow and learn so that I gain understanding and wisdom.

Jesus is so protective of me – He gave me safe boundaries to live within. These boundaries give me freedom, peace, joy and safety; they allow me to grow, blossom and bear fruit, and to cope with all that comes my way, good and bad.

Jesus so enjoys me – He is eager to hear my thoughts, my dreams and desires, my fears and concerns, the secrets of my heart and He is just as eager to share His with me.

Jesus is so available to me – He is never too busy or occupied with anything else to be with me.

Jesus is so eager for us to be in relationship – He ensured I would hear His voice and could know Him intimately.

Jesus is so practical – He provides every single thing that I need on a daily basis.

Jesus is so generous towards me – He gives me wonderful meaningful gifts to enjoy and use, experiences to relish, characteristics to build upon, and the powerful knowledge of Him. He gives me even more when I actually ask!

Jesus is so jealous for me – He's coming back to fight for me and woe betide any who have persecuted me.

Jesus is so moved by me – He made a glorious plan way back before I was even formed, that goes on well after my earthly body has returned to dust, and planned for us to be together forever.

I am so blessed by and so in love with Jesus. I belong to Him and He belongs to me.

Romans 5:12-20 my thoughts

Nips and tucks, Botox and fillers, plumpers and firmers – all promising solutions to entice us towards fulfilling our inherent desire for eternal life and everlasting youth!

There is nothing wrong with this desire - it’s the way the Creator made us. This desire will demand satisfaction and satisfied it will be. We are designed as eternal creatures and our souls will live forever – our choice is an eternity in love and partnership with significant purpose or an eternity in dark isolation, hopelessness and fear – we get to choose but there’s no evidence of middle ground.

When God created man, it was to be in mutual, selfless friendship with Him and to live forever in paradise. As the first human was seduced into sin, it ceased to be paradise and a place that the Holy God could dwell. Decay and ultimately death entered in. Since all sinned, death spread to all. That which was made to live eternally now succumbed to the all-consuming grave.

In passionate desire for His friends, God called out to, guided and got involved with His people as they fell foul to an increasing depravity of sinful acts. There had been no law given so sin could not be counted, death simply reigned as the natural consequence to sin.the-gift-of-faith

One man’s seduction into disobedience and self-obsessed trespass led to the condemnation for all men. The result of this one trespass, one lack of judgement, one foolish proud act, was that all perished. God’s heart was breaking. His beloved people now seduced by pride, vanity and self-fulfilment, were trapped under the power of death.

Through His friend Moses, He introduced the law to give us an understanding of sin, to enable us to measure right from wrong and to see that sin is so powerful and our flesh is so weak in the face of it, that we would need help to redeem our nature, our inheritance as friends of God, - we would need a Saviour.

The compassionate grace and desire for friendship that the Father God feels towards His creation, led Him to send His beloved Son, Jesus to earth.

Song 8:5 "...leaning on her Beloved"

"...leaning on her Beloved" This little phrase really captured my imagination this week.leaning

What does this mean? What’s this about “leaning”?

At this stage, in the Song of Solomon, the bride has matured and developed an intimate relationship with the King giving her life completely to the Him. She has “come up” victorious over many trials; she values those that He values and she is confident in love. She trusts the King and is not offended by what He chooses to do, or not do.

She understands that it is not enough to have the Spirit living within her, or simply enjoy his presence, but that He yearns to have an intimate partnership with her – interacting, interchanging and with honest dialogue. She’s fully grasped that she is His inheritance and she wants, more than anything else, to be a blessing to Him.

So, what’s with the leaning?

The use of this word is often quite derogatory, suggesting someone is incapable of managing on their own – as if that’s a bad thing, and not the very way we were designed.

Leaning “wanting and accepting – involving whole bodies, not just arms and legs like hugging” (Urban Dictionary – Google)

I like this definition – it makes it clear that leaning is not about the exchange of emotion, or sentiment that a hug is all about, but it involves the whole body, both wanting to lean and accepting the stance.

This Week @ NFHOP

Sunday 12 May

10.00am: CHURCH

Living Word Church

The Nedderman Centre, Marryat Rd, New Milton BH25 5NY

Monday 13 May

10.00am – 12.00pm: PRAY

Morning Prayer Watch

7.00pm – 9.00pm: DWELL

Revelation by meditation

11 Seacroft Avenue, Barton on Sea, New Milton BH25 7NY

Wednesday 15 May


Friday 17 May

7.00pm: SHABBAT

Shabbat meal and fellowship

11 Seacroft Avenue, Barton on Sea, New Milton BH25 7NY

Sunday 19 May

10.00am: CHURCH

Living Word Church

The Nedderman Centre, Marryat Rd, New Milton BH25 5NY