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Showing posts from September, 2010

Inspire Womens Conference

Two of my good friends, both great local leaders are hosting and speaking at the Inspire Ladies Conference in Camberley on Saturday 13th November. It's a local Newfrontiers conference hosted by Beacon Church . Bev Landreth-Smith is hosting; and Liz Green from Reading is one of the speakers.
The theme of the day is "Identity". Bev's written on the invitation:  "We are specifically looking at how to identify our own God-given gifts and talents, and to use them for the benefit of the Kingdom of God! It looks like a great day - nice and close too. Cost is £10, You can pre-order lunch for £6.50.

This requires listening to God and finding out how to use our time and gifts in the right arena. We will examine how as we get older and wiser we can change where and when we use those gifts and talents. We will look at what Jesus said and did, what he says about us, and what he wants us to do.
We will hear a testimony of a lady who has made certain choices about how she has u…

Letters for Zambia

Well I'm off to Zambia on Wednesday 6th October - exciting! Still lots to do - please pray for me, my family, dog etc! Please pray for the team and our preparations...and pray for all the people we will meet and impact. We want to bring God's words and God's love to these precious people who are serving Him and leading others in Serenje.

So, I would LOVE to take lots of lovely encouraging letters with me to bless the women.
If you had a penpal contact, would you please write a brief letter to her this week? Whether you've heard from her or not please. It's good to tell her something aout your life and especially your family and church. Then include a favouruite Bible verse to encourage her, and assure her of your love and prayers across the miles!
If you haven't written before, please do write - perhaps just address is "Dear friend in Serenje". Mel is doing a fab job in coordinationg the penpals, and she has a number of letters from Serenje ladies who do…

Monday Morning

Today's a bit gloomy isn't it? Damp and grey Monday morning - I need a lot of coffee today, a lot of light as I work and noise when I break. With our Willow GLS in Bracknell this week and travelling to Zambia the next, I have some major lists to write...and then get on with the actions!
Whatever your Monday looks like, I pray you'll know God with you - comforter, peace-giver,healer, saviour, redeemer, the God of mercy, grace and truth.

On a grey and damp Monday morning we all need a little lot of HOPE....

"For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you".

Isaiah 41:13


He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night nor the arrow that flies by day.

Psalm 91 v4-5


God is our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble.
Psalm 46 v1


"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I…

Bits and Pieces

Bittersweet
Seems like we are having some supply problems in getting hold of Bittersweet :(  We are hoping to have some copies in before next weekend, but you may want to purchase your copy direct from Amazon UK. It's £9.89 and there's no charge for p+p if you choose the standard delivery (3-5 days). It really is a fantastic book that I know will bless you, and so I really encourage you to get hold of it and read it. If you can't afford It right now, borrow a friend's copy, or put it on your wish-list ! I haven't had anyone requesting the free copy I was offering....so think I probably made it confusing! Basically if you can afford it, please buy it. If you can't, please let me know you want to be entered into the "lucky dip" for a free book. You'll then get it straight from Shauna to you.

Requests for help
Great response this morning for Simon's requests for help. Hoorah, we can park in the college car park again on Sundays (no more wet feet wal…
Shauna Niequist, introducing her new book Bittersweet: Thoughts on Change, Grace, and Learning the Hard Way.


'The idea of bittersweet is changing the way I live, unraveling and re-weaving the way I understand life. Bittersweet is the idea that in all things there is both something broken and something beautiful, that there is a moment of lightness on even the darkest of nights, a shadow of hope in every heartbreak, and that rejoicing is no less rich even when it contains a splinter of sadness. 'It's the practice of believing that we really do need both the bitter and the sweet, and that a life of nothing but sweetness rots both your teeth and your soul. Bitter is what makes us strong, what forces us to push through, what helps us earn the lines on our faces and the calluses on our hands. Sweet is nice enough, but bittersweet is beautiful, nuanced, full of depth and complexity. Bittersweet is courageous, gutsy, audacious, earthy.
'This is what I've come to believe ab…

Bittersweet

We've talked about the lovely orange book that is Cold Tangerines - a beautiful book, now on many a Kerith woman's bookshelf! Well, the long-awaited next book by Shauna Niequist is the equally beautiful pale blue book that is Bittersweet. The full title being Bittersweet: Thoughts on Change, Grace, and Learning the Hard Way
I bought it at the Willow Conference - had it signed of course:) and read it on holiday in Wales. The analogies with food and meals really connected with me as I read - like a delicious and beautifully prepared meal, I wanted to read more and could have wolfed it down, but chose instead the restraint of reading slowly. Each chapter is self-contained - an observation, a recount of an ordinary event in her life. That's what resonates so well as you read it -thinking "that's my life" "I've felt like that" "I wasn't sure other women felt like that too". It's about seeing God in the ordinary. It's about real ,…

"Leadership is Influence"

Wow, this is it - the first week back into the routine of work! Well I say that, 2 are back at work; 1 is back at college...and the other 2 still have 2 days at home until they go back on Monday hoorah! So the pace at home has picked up a bit - and I remember again what it is to set an alarm, and to be tired of an evening! This afternoon I'm doing a new thing - leading a couple of sessions on the Kerith Academy. I'm really excited to be involved in this new venture. Really passionate about my subject. And really quite apprehensive...but I'm always like this...and it will be ok once I start! So can you guess this afternoon's topic from the picture above? Yep, been doing a  lot of reading these last couple of weeks! The session's on Leadership - leading others; leading up and leading yourself. Wow, there's a lot of wisdom out there - really practical stuff based on Biblical principles.
Fresh from Willow...and thinking about our own GLS in a few weeks time, I know …

Summer Memories

had a lovely walk around Virginia Water in the sunshine today - I wish that summer would go on forever!
Thought you might like a few images from Willow :) Happy Days .



I Wish I'd Been Kinder

"Be kinder than necessary because everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle"
Think of Ed Garton and you think of a really nice, kind and friendly guy - twinkly eyes, loud voice, huge love for his Saviour and huge love for people. When I heard the unbelievable news that he'd died, I thought of his kindness and instantly thought "I wish I'd been kinder".
I wish I'd stopped more and asked more and heard his story. I wasn't horrible, but I could have been kinder. I can always be kinder - to everyone. I think it's all part of the "GET OVER YOURSELF" shout I heard from God recently. When I get over myself, I can be kind to people, and not defensive or proud or mean. 
Kindness is a fruit of the Spirit - and I'm grateful because it shows we need God's help as it's not always easy being kind! Liam encouraged us in his sermon to love people because evangelism is love/ love is evangelism, and kindness shows love.

“Love is patient,…

We Lift Up Our Eyes

What a beautiful morning! The recent losses of people we loved has really made me grateful to God for each new day that I wake up, find I'm alive and have the opportunity to live the day fully. This morning started with packed lunches - not my favourite activity, but one where I'm going to choose to "take and place before God as an offering" (Romans 12v1). Simon had a 7am meeting so was off early...but not before I managed to persuade him to replace the shirt he was wearing with an ironed one! He's speaking at There's More To Life today - and yes I want him looking his best, but also I don't want them thinking I don't look after him :)
So then I took our lovely huge hairy dog out for a walk. It was such a beautiful day, but it took me a while to realise I wasn't really appreciating it because I was looking straight ahead or down (keep a good  eye on what that dog's up to!). When I lifted my eyes I saw a pale blue open sky with a few wispy clou…

God Whispers

"Wise men and women are always learning, always listening for fresh insights" Prov 18 v 15

I've been reflecting on all I heard and experienced at the Willow Global Leadership Summit last month. It was incredible - world-class teaching presented by incredibly gifted people who are giving their very best. In preparing to host the GLS next month in Bracknell we have copies of all the talks on CD, such a blessing to be able to listen to Christine Caine, Bill Hybels, Jack Welcha and the like whilst I'm chopping carrots or emptying the dishwasher!
Bill Hybel's initial talk introduced the idea of listening out for "God whispers". God is always talking, always speaking to us - we don't hear because we're not really listening. The idea is to be open to God, to ask Him to speak to us in any and every situation - a walk, a mundane task, a song, a preach, a meal...anything and everything! You know the kind of thing - a name that comes to mind, an idea to call…