“Worth Quoting 12”

The glory of God always comes at the sacrifice of self.
A.W. Tozer


God’s grace through Jesus Christ makes a person more humble and more confident at the same time.
Tim Keller

Mother’s Day 2012

Welcome to the second Sunday in May also known as Mother’s Day.

Some interesting information about Mother’s Day.

It was an American by the name of Anna Jarvis who is was credited with the birth of Mother’s Day as we know it today during the early part of the last century and even though there have been various celebrations of Mothers in ancient history Anna Jarvis began the modern tradition.

Her mother Ann Jarvis worked throughout West Virginia in the US to promote worker health and safety and during the American Civil War and she organized women to tend to the needs of the wounded of both sides of the war conflict. After the war she became active in the promotion of a “Mothers’ Work Day” that, unlike the modern version of the holiday, specially emphasized the causes of pacifism and social activism. She organized meetings of the mothers of soldiers of both sides of the late war

At Ann’s funeral in 1907 her daughter, Anna Jarvis, passed out 500 white carnations at her mother’s church one for each mother in the congregation. The following year, she held a memorial to her mother and then embarked upon a campaign to make Mother’s Day a recognized US holiday, a goal which was achieved when President Woodrow Wilson declared it in 1914.

By the 1920s, Anna Jarvis had become soured by the commercialization of the holiday. She incorporated herself as the Mother’s Day International Association, she trademarked the phrases “second Sunday in May” and “Mother’s Day”, and was once arrested for disturbing the peace. She and her sister Ellsinore spent their family inheritance campaigning against what the holiday had become. Both died in poverty. According to her New York Times obituary, Jarvis became embittered because too many people sent their mothers a printed greeting card. As she said,

A printed card means nothing except that you are too lazy to write to the woman who has done more for you than anyone in the world. And candy! You take a box to Mother—and then eat most of it yourself. A pretty sentiment.

Anna Marie Jarvis never married and had no children.

It’s interesting how traditions get started and eventually grow to proportions that the original could never really envision.

I know we can get all hung up about observing these traditions like Christmas etc, but they can be terrific times where people who may never be honoured in throughout the year can be.

This will not be a long message today as I want to spend some time in fellowship over some tea and scones that the setup team have prepared this morning in honor of our mothers.

I also want to have a time for an open mic where those who would like to affirm their mums can and even where some mums may want to tell us what they love about being a mum or to say a few words of praise over their own kids.

I personally think both Mothers and Fathers days are great ones to celebrate as they fall nicely into line with the biblical encouragement to honour our parents.

But one thing that I find interesting about mums is that they are often the ones that “typically” spend the most time with their children throughout their lives.

Even Jesus’s mum was not only their at his birth (couldn’t help but not be there I guess) but also at his death as well as being a regular throughout his life and ministry.

Isn’t fascinating that you hear very little about Joseph after their return from exile in Egypt to Nazareth when Jesus was a boy.

I love the way that Jesus honours his mother at his death.

John 19:23-27
23 When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took his garments and divided them into four parts, one part for each soldier; also his tunic. But the tunic was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom,
24 so they said to one another, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see whose it shall be.” This was to fulfill the Scripture which says, “They divided my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots.” So the soldiers did these things,
25 but standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene.
26 When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!”
27 Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.

Ephesians 6:1-4
1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.
2 “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise),
3 “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.”
4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

There is something that we need to learn not only about honouring our own mums and dads but of also cultivating a culture of honour amongst ourselves.

It’s very easy to construct or formulate an opinion about someone and never have the grace to allow it to be deconstructed and reformulated. Let’s not be those people.

So in finishing off and continuing to develop a culture of honour amongst ourselves we are going to have a time of “open mic” for mums to be specifically honoured today.

May God bless all our mums today and always.

“Worth Quoting 11”

Two powerful and unnerving quotes from Martin Luther King Jr.

There was a time when the church was very powerful—in the time when the early Christians rejoiced at being deemed worthy to suffer for what they believed. In those days the church was not merely a thermometer that recorded the ideas and principles of popular opinion; it was a thermostat that transformed the mores of society

If today’s church does not recapture the sacrificial spirit of the early church, it will lose its authenticity, forfeit the loyalty of millions, and be dismissed as an irrelevant social club with no meaning for the twentieth century

Jesus is Lord

Here is a wonderful video from Alan Hirsch on the centrality and authenticity of faith in Jesus, summed up in three small words – Jesus is Lord.

A timely reminder of the simplicity and radical nature of the call to follow Jesus in the midst of our consumer drenched world.

Well worth the time to watch and meditate on.


Alan Hirsch: Jesus Is Lord [VERGE video] from Verge Network on Vimeo.

“Worth Quoting 10”

One of the glories of the Christian gospel is its ability not only to deliver a man from sin but to orient him, to place him on a peak from which he can see yesterday and today in their relation to tomorrow. The truth cleanses his mind so that he can recognize things that matter and see time and space and kings and cabbages in their true perspective.
A.W.Tozer – Man the dwelling place of God

Prophecy for City Edge

Prophecy for City Edge
Wednesday November 23, 2011

Isaiah 54:1-5 MSG
“Sing, barren woman, who has never had a baby. Fill the air with song, you who’ve never experienced childbirth! You’re ending up with far more children than all those childbearing women.” God says so! “Clear lots of ground for your tents! Make your tents large. Spread out! Think big! Use plenty of rope, drive the tent pegs deep. You’re going to need lots of elbow room for your growing family. You’re going to take over whole nations; you’re going to resettle abandoned cities. Don’t be afraid-you’re not going to be embarrassed. Don’t hold back-you’re not going to come up short. You’ll forget all about the humiliations of your youth, and the indignities of being a widow will fade from memory. For your Maker is your bridegroom, his name, God-of-the-Angel-Armies! Your Redeemer is The Holy of Israel, known as God of the whole earth.

“Worth Quoting 9”

Right thinking about God exists to serve right feelings for God. Logic exists for the sake of love. Reasoning exists for the sake of rejoicing. Doctrine exists for the sake of delight. Reflection about God exists for the sake of affection for God. The head is meant serve the heart.

John Piper
The Pastor as Scholar and The Scholar as Pastor. Reflections on Life and Ministry with D.A. Carson

“Worth Quoting 8”

I am regularly bursting to say something about the most precious things in the universe – and not in any disinterested, dispassionate, composed, detached, unemotional, so-called scholarly way, but rather with total interest, warm passion, discomposure, utter attachment, and fully emotional, and I hope always, true.

John Piper
The Pastor as Scholar and The Scholar as Pastor. Reflections on Life and Ministry with D.A. Carson

Maintaining Our Spiritual Health

Some notes from the message on Maintaining Our Spiritual Health – Sunday April 17, 2011

Preach the Gospel to yourself regularly
At Easter Jesus was condemned. There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. http://bible.us/Rom8.1.ESV

The gospel or good news is not just the grace of God that saves us but it is also the grace of God that sustains us. We don’t start with the spirit and seek to perfect ourselves in the flesh – it begins and ends with the Holy Spirit leading, guiding and showing us the way.
Study Romans for the most complete understanding of the Gospel and Galatians for Paul’s personal and impassioned plea to never loose what was gained by Jesus for our benefit – the good news.

Read and study the Bible regularly
Listen to worship or uplifting music

– Simply being in a room with people is not fellowship.
– Find out about each other by asking questions.
– Pray for each other
Get over offenses quickly
– Forgive those who hurt you
– Pray for them
– Do good to them even if it is not returned
– Speak with them and do your best to get things cleared up
Guard your heart against all forms of pride
– Overt
– Covert
– Spiritual
Keep in good physical shape
– Rest
– Recreate
– Keep active
– Keep hydrated
Keep in good financial shape
– Prepare a budget
– Stick to your budget
– Live without a credit card if you can or keep a very small limit and try not to be tempted to increase it
– Save for your future and regular holidays
Be an encourager
– Be genuine
– Initiate and don’t always wait to be encouraged
– When you think of people pray for them or txt, call or inbox them

“Worth Quoting 7”

I think people want to be magnificent. It is the job of the leader to bring out that magnificence in people and to create an environment where they feel safe and supported and ready to do the best job possible in accomplishing key goals. This responsibility is a sacred trust that should not be violated. The opportunity to guide others to their fullest potential is an honor and one that should not be taken lightly. As leaders, we hold the lives of others in our hands. These hands need to be gentle and caring and always available for support.
Ken Blanchard (Author of the One Minute Manager 1982)