Faith

Apr 22

I Value Faith 1

Animals or babies, which make you happier? Compare these two videos!

 

 

 

It’s not always easy to be happy but Christians are encouraged to be joyful. It’s one of the fruits of the Spirit (can you name the other 8?). Joy is what we experience when we know that God is who he says he is, that he loves us and will never let us go.

 

Archbishop Justin Welby wrote recently about Christians leaving church and gong into the rest of the week,

 

We show that we come from Christ when we go out in humble and joy-filled service. When we go out singing and dancing; when we rejoice in worship and are full of love; when we are not judgmental; we do not fall into the old church habit of throwing stones at the weak and flattering the proud and the strong. Is our message so full of Christ-centred hope that it creates societies of hope?

 

To put it another way,

 

When our lives are filled with peace, faith and joy, people will want to know what we have.

David Jeremiah

 

So, will those around you in school, at home, in your community know you for your joy? There’s a challenge for some.

 

If you're doing the Noise, smile as you do it. One easy way to express joy is through music. We are singing two joyful hymns on Ascension Day. Do play them to remind yourself of the tunes.

 

Thine Be The Glory

 

 

At The Name of Jesus

 

 

Prayer:

Fill us we pray, O Lord, with the joy of salvation - pour into our hearts the joy of the Lord.

Carry us we pray in Your loving arms and breathe into us Your Spirit of joy so that we may rejoice in You and spread your joy into other peope.

In Jesus' name we pray,

Amen

 

 

Tags: Faith
Apr 15

I Am Interdependent 2

Interdependent image

flickr photo by woodleywonderworks https://flickr.com/photos/wwworks/1384952210 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license

 

What is the best team you’ve been part of? What is the worst?

What do you think makes teams work well? What makes them fall apart?

 

John F. Kennedy said;

 

If there is one path above all others to war, it is the path of weakness and disunity.

 

I play in a football team where we almost descended into war because of disunity! After a number of awful results, blame games and disagreements, one player who was a Christian shared a message of unity from 1Corinthians 1:10.

 

Brothers, I ask you with all my heart in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ to agree among yourselves. Do not be divided into little groups. Think and act as if you all had the same mind.

 

After trying to live this passage on the pitch, I’m happy to say that things started to change with our results. Those of you who follow football, will notice the power of Leicester City’s ‘team’ mentality. One of the challenges in any team is where there is individualism. Discuss in your tutor what individualism is and what the pros and cons of it are as a moral stance.

Let’s finish on a prayer for unity God of peace:

May we look to learn from each other and see the greatness and potential in each person.

May we be those choose to work together for the greater good.

May we pursue peace and appreciation over gossip and comparison.

May we become united in love for you, for each other and for creation.

Amen.

Make sure you enjoy this summer jam that poignantly captures something of unity for humanity.

 

 

Tags: Faith
Apr 10

I Am Interdependent 1

Introduction, watch the following video. It’s a bit slow moving but stick with it.

 


So the hermit crab shows us both the value of working in a team and the advantages of interdependence, of combining together to achieve our best.

Jesus knew the value of interdependence. He chose both men and women to be part of a close community and after his resurrection sent them out to continue his work.

 

As the Father sent me, so I send you.

 

Believers today are still called to be interdependent. The term ‘body of Christ’ is used and that reminds us that we are interdependent with Jesus and with Christians throughout history and today. This means we should rejoice with all those who are rejoicing at the resurrection and be sad with all those who are suffering, e.g. the Christian community in Lahore, Pakistan, who were so cruelly bombed on Easter Day.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father,

Thank you for making me part of Your body.

It is my desire to be an active part of Your church by serving, promoting unity, and sharing my faith with others.

Give me opportunities to accomplish these things for your glory!

Use me LORD. In Jesus' name I pray,

Amen.


If you/your tutor group have been doing 40acts, then do look at this final video from them. It’s a celebration of interdependence.

 

 

 

Tags: Faith
Mar 27

Easter

 

Easter image

Copyright free image from Freely Photos under CCo license

 

Tags: Faith
Mar 18

Science and Religion 2

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t think a rainbow is beautiful.

rainbow

© Copyright Kenneth Mallard and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.


I also understand, as a scientist, how rainbows come about and even why the sky is lighter on the inside of a rainbow than the outside (you had noticed that, hadn’t you?).

 

People sometimes ask me whether understanding how it works detracts from the beauty of it.  It doesn’t.  If anything, it adds to it.  If I know how rainbows form I can know where to look when there’s a shower on a sunny day, and even make my own personal rainbow halo with a plant sprayer in the garden.

 

rainbow explanation

 

Image labelled for reuse: http://www.sonnentaler.net / Pierre Fernandez


As a scientist I spend my life trying to understand - and then explain to you - the rules, the laws of nature, by which the universe works.  And the more I study, and the more I understand, the more it seems to me that the only way we have a beautiful, ordered universe is if an intelligent mind has planned those laws.

 

The Big Bang account of the start of the universe is the best scientific explanation we have - it fits the observations so well.  I’m amazed at just how similar it is to the account of the beginning of everything in Genesis.  Science has nothing to say about why it happened 13.8 billion years ago; my faith explains that God acted.

 

A different genesis - how we each came into existence.  I know the biology - it’s amazing - so I share with the writer of Psalms who wrote in Psalm 139:

 

O Lord, you have searched me and you know me.
You created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;

 

Think about that last phrase…

 

 

Prayer:

Creator God,

we stand amazed by the beauty, the wonder and the order of your created universe.

Thank you for brains that can make sense of what we see,

that can study and understand the way it all works.

Thank you that our science enhances and builds our faith.

Amen

 

 

Tags: Faith