God is good – but He’s not safe.

Eddie,

Does anyone have the foggiest idea what sort of power we so blithely invoke? Or, as I suspect, does no one believe a word of it? The churches are children playing on the floor with their chemistry sets, mixing up a batch of TNT to kill a Sunday morning. It is madness to wear ladies’ straw hats and velvet hats to church; we should all be wearing crash helmets. Ushers should issue life preservers and signal flares; they should lash us to our pews.

Annie Dillard.

Newsletter 13th December 2015

Louise,

Priory Street Carol Service

Our Carols by Candlelight service will be held next Sunday night at 6pm at Priory Street followed by tea/coffee and mince pies. Everyone is welcome to attend!

Rudloe Carol Service

The Rudloe congregation is having their carol service on the 19th December at the Rudloe Community Centre at 6.45pm. It would be wonderful if some of our Priory Street worshippers attended this event to swell numbers and make a joyful noise! Also, does anyone have any outdoor lanterns/lights that can be borrowed for this event? Please contact Louise in the office or Rob.

Ladies’ Christmas Event, 14th December

Tomorrow evening from 7.30pm; soup and pudding £4; talk by Sharon; we will also be showing a short dvd. Ladies, this is our time of oasis and reflection on the birth of our Saviour before we get caught up in the business of all the preparation we have to do.  Please sign up at the back!!

Midweek Service

Our MWS on 16th December at 2pm is a service of traditional Carols and Readings led by Eric Seager and followed by home-made refreshments.

Connected

For our next gathering (Sat 19th Dec, 8-10pm), we’ll be ordering a Chinese take-away from Hong Kong House in Corsham. No online menu is available, so please either get a menu from Beth, or get your own menu. Please place your order either via Connected@CBC Facebook page, or via Beth’s email beth.r.mills@googlemail.com by Friday 18th. Thank you!

Christmas Cards for Persecuted Believers

These are available in the porch. Please send with a verse of encouragement and prayer. See “Connect & Encourage” www.csw.org.uk. Next to the cards are Open Doors’ leaflets re their appeal for the Iraq/Syrian Churches. “Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.” Heb 13:3

Grace Place

Be sure you get on the blog and read Anne and Hannah’s contributions to choices they have made with a Gospel mindset. It will inspire and encourage you!

Bath Women’s Conference, 23rd April, 2016

There will be a Bath Women’s Conference (under The South West Gospel Partnership) on Saturday 23rd April 2016 from 10am-4.15pm at Kingswood School, Bath. Tickets are £15 each. Anne Holmes would like to make a booking for the ladies of CBC by the end of December as tickets will sell fast for this event. Please sign up at the back if you would like to attend! Speak to Anne for more details.

Church Directory 2016

Please complete a contact sheet for the church directory. Even if you were listed in the 2015 directory, please complete a new form and indicate on the form the service you normally attend (ie. Rudloe, 9.15am, 11.15am, 6pm, midweek service). Please note, one sheet per family, only provide contact information you are happy to share and please write very clearly so there are no mistakes in the final production! Leave form in the box at the back. Thank you!

Mobile Phone

Does anyone have an old, simple smart phone that they no longer want?  If so, please speak to Helen Christie as the old prayer chain mobile is not working very well and we would like to replace it.  Many thanks.

Giving to CBC: blue envelope scheme

Blue Offering envelopes for 2016 are now available from our treasurer, Michael Prior. If you like to give weekly to CBC by cash or cheque, one way of doing so is by putting a blue envelope into the offering bag, with your offering in it . These envelopes are dated weekly and have a reference number on them. The reference number is particularly useful if you are a Gift-Aid giver, as the number enables the treasurer to identify you when claiming the gift-aid.

Christmas 2015

As we have done in many previous years, please use the boards at the back to pin on your Christmas card to CBC folk. Please also take a few CBC Christmas fliers, as well as the Churches of Corsham leaflet, to give to friends, family, neighbours and invite them to services over this festive period.

…This week…

Monday: Mums’ study, 9.30am in the Hut; Ladies’ Christmas meal, 7.30pm

Wednesday: Morning prayer meeting 7.15am; Midweek carol service, 2pm

Thursday: Toddler Group 10.00am; Corsham Money and Debt Advice Centre 7pm

Friday: Corsham Money and Debt Advice Centre, 9.30am

Saturday: Prayer, 8.30am; Rudloe carol service, 6.45pm; Connected, 8pm

…Coming up…

20th December: Carols by candlelight, 6pm

22nd December: Corsham town carol service in the High Street, 6.45pm

24th December: Christmas eve service, 6pm

25th December: Christmas day, 10am family service

27th December: One service at Priory Street at 10am and no evening service

Persevere with one another

Eddie,

Students often ask me, “How can I prepare to be a missionary?” I usually answer by urging them to stick to the group they are part of, and to go through the pain of being there without giving up. That will make them skilled in facing the frustration and pain that is an unavoidable aspect of the missionary call. There is an unprecedented amount of study today on cultural anthropology and contextualisation, and I praise God for that. These studies are very helpful for incarnational ministry. But more helpful even that that is the ability to die, to die for those we are called to work with: our families, our churches and our mission fields.

Ajith Fernando, “An Authentic Servant”

What Christ is doing for you today

Eddie,

Christ’s sacrifice for our sins was finished in His death on the cross. But His ministry did not cease then, or when He rose from the grave, or even when He ascended to the right hand of the Father. No, Jesus’ ministry continues even now. He is present with His Father on our behalf. He is interceding for us.

What a relief it is to know this when you have made a mess of life, when you feel the accusations of Satan and condemn yourself. You are ashamed to go into the presence of God. You go to church and look around, thinking you are a hypocrite. You feel a failure – indeed, you have failed. Remember, then, that Jesus is at the right hand of the Father. Remember that He is there for your sake. He died for you once; He intercedes for you forever.

Sinclair Ferguson, “By Grace Alone”

Understanding God’s Heart

Eddie,

“He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all – how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” (Romans 8:32).

Commenting on this verse in his book “By Grace Alone”, Sinclair Ferguson writes:

God can point us to the cross and say:

  • “Do you see how much I love you?”
  • “I was prepared to bear My own judgment against your sin in the person of My own Son.”
  • “If I was prepared to do that for you, there is nothing I will withhold from you for your good.”

You will never understand the heart of God until you understand this.

It Matters What You Say

Eddie,

Ephesians 4:29: “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”

Earlier today I was challenged by the following comment from Jerry Bridges’ book, “Respectable Sins”:

As we look at Ephesians 4:29, we see that we are not to let any corrupting talk come out of our mouths. Corrupting talk is not limited to profanity or obscene speech. … Note Paul’s absolute prohibition. No corrupting talk. None whatsoever. This means no gossip, no sarcasm, no critical speech, no harsh words. All of these sinful words that tend to tear down another person must be put out of our speech. Think about what the church of Jesus Christ would look like if we all sought to apply Paul’s words.

None But Christ Can Satisfy

Eddie,

One of my favourite quotations from Malcolm Muggeridge:

I may, I suppose, regard myself, or pass for being, a relatively successful man. People occasionally stare at me in the streets – that’s fame. I can fairly easily earn enough to qualify for admission to the higher slopes of the Inland Revenue – that’s success. Furnished with money and a little fame, even the elderly like myself, if they care to, may partake of trendy diversions – that’s pleasure. It might happen once in a while that something I said or wrote was sufficiently heeded for me to persuade myself that it represented a serious impact on our time – that’s fulfilment. Yet I say to you, and I beg you to believe me, multiply these tiny triumphs by a million; add them all together, and they are nothing – less than nothing, a positive impediment – measured against one draught of that living water Christ offers to the spiritually thirsty, irrespective of who or what they are. What, I ask myself, does life hold; what is there in the works of time, in the past, present or future, which could possibly be put in the balance against the refreshment of drinking that water?

Notice sheet for 6th December 2015

Louise,

Prayer Evening

This evening the service will be a prayer meeting and we will have an extended time of prayer for the persecuted church followed by a time of prayer for mission and Gospel expansion.

Nativity Services

Our Christmas nativity services will be held next Sunday at both the 9.15am and 11.15am services. Please invite friends and relatives to these special events in the life of the Church. Everyone welcome!

Rudloe Carol Service

The Rudloe congregation is having their carol service on the 19th December at the Rudloe Community Centre at 6.45pm. It would be wonderful if some of our Priory Street worshippers attended this event to swell numbers and make a joyful noise! Also, does anyone have any outdoor lanterns/lights that can be borrowed for this event? Please contact Louise in the office or Rob.

Ladies’ Christmas Event, 14th December

Time 7.30pm; soup and pudding £4; talk by Sharon; we will also be showing a short dvd. Ladies, this is our time of oasis and reflection on the birth of our Saviour before we get caught up in the business of all the preparation we have to do.  Please sign up at the back!!

Nativity services’ rehearsals on the 13th December

We are having two Nativity services this year, one at 9.15am and one at 11.15am.  Children will only be participating in one Nativity and this will be the usual service that you attend as a family on a Sunday morning.  Dress rehearsals will be as follows: for families who regularly attend the 9.15 Sunday service, rehearsal will be Saturday 12th December 9 – 10.15 am.  For families who regularly attend the 11.15 Sunday service, rehearsal will be Saturday December 12th 10.15 – 11.30am. If you have any questions please speak to Rhiannon.

Connected

The next Connected get-together will be on Saturday 19th December from 8-10pm at Priory Street. Please speak to Beth Mills for more info.

Card for Lancasters

There is a Christmas card for Steve and Ruth Lancaster for people to sign. It is at the back of the church.

Prayer for missions and the persecuted church

We will meet at CBC at 7.30pm on Wednesday 9th December.  All welcome – contact Steve or Gill Bryant for more details.

Christmas Cards for Persecuted Believers

These are available in the porch. Please send with a verse of encouragement and prayer. See “Connect & Encourage” www.csw.org.uk. “Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.” Heb 13:3

Grace Place

Be sure you get on the blog and read Anne and Hannah’s contributions to choices they have made with a Gospel mindset. It will inspire and encourage you!

Bath Women’s Conference, 23rd April, 2016

There will be a Bath Women’s Conference (under The South West Gospel Partnership) on Saturday 23rd April from 10am – 4.15pm at Kingswood School, Bath. Tickets are £15 each. Anne Holmes would like to make a booking for the ladies of CBC by the end of December as tickets will sell fast for this event. Please sign up at the back if you would like to attend! Speak to Anne for more details.

Mobile Phone

Does anyone have an old, simple smart phone that they no longer want?  If so, please speak to Helen Christie as the old prayer chain mobile is not working very well and we would like to replace it.  Many thanks.

Christmas 2015

As we have done in many previous years, please use the boards at the back to pin on your Christmas card to CBC folk. Please also take a few CBC Christmas fliers, as well as the Churches of Corsham leaflet, to give to friends, family, neighbours and invite them to services over this festive period.

Church Directory 2016

Please complete the enclosed information sheet for the church directory. Even if you were listed in the 2015 directory, please complete a new form and indicate on the form the service you normally attend (ie. Rudloe, 9.15am, 11.15am, 6pm, midweek service). Please note, one sheet per family, only provide contact information you are happy to share and please write very clearly so there are no mistakes in the final production! Leave form in the box at the back. Thank you!

Walking on Sundays

Natalie Ovens is organising a very informal ad hoc Sunday afternoon walking group for walks in and around Corsham, the idea being to meet after lunch, at around 3pm. If you are interested in doing this, please contact Natalie who will draw up a list of potential walkers!

Giving to CBC: blue envelope scheme

Blue Offering envelopes for 2016 are now available from our treasurer, Michael Prior. If you like to give weekly to CBC by cash or cheque, one way of doing so is by putting a blue envelope into the offering bag, with your offering in it . These envelopes are dated weekly and have a reference number on them. The reference number is particularly useful if you are a Gift-Aid giver, as the number enables the treasurer to identify you when claiming the gift-aid.

Meals on Wheels

Please be advised that Lesley Didsbury will now be co-ordinating meals for new families and those recently discharged from hospital.

…This week…

Monday: Mums’ study, 9.30am in the Hut

Tuesday: TLC, 12 o’clock

Wednesday: Morning prayer meeting 7.15am; prayer for missions and the persecuted church, 7.30pm

Thursday: Toddler Group 10.00am; Debt Advice Centre 7pm

Friday: Corsham Money and Debt Advice Centre, 9.30am

Saturday: Morning prayer, 8.30am; dress rehearsals for nativities @ Priory Street 9-11.30am

…Coming up…

13th December: 2 x Nativity services, 9.15am and 11.15am

14th December: Ladies’ bible study, 7.30pm

16th December: Midweek service, 2pm

19th December: Connected, 8-10pm

20th December: Carols by candlelight, 6pm

22nd December: Corsham town carol service in the High Street, 6.45pm

24th December: Christmas eve service, 6pm

25th December: Christmas day, 10am family service

27th December: One service at Priory Street at 10am and no evening service

The Power of a Changed Life

Eddie,

Imagine if heaven got into people and changed them into radically unselfish, non-defensive, unthreatened, sacrificially loving followers of Jesus as they followed Him on the narrow road to the new world, the new heaven and the new earth. Think of the explosive power of people whose way of living, whose style of relating, and whose love for God and others made secular folks feel either exposed and hostile or curious and drawn.

 Larry Crabb, “Real Church”

A Prayer About Grace For Grumpiness

Eddie,

This morning I needed to pray these words by Scotty Smith.

Heavenly Father, I’m waking up humbled and repentant. I need some of your manifold sufficient grace today – just like every day. Not only do I need your grace for owning and boasting in my weaknesses, but I need your grace so that I will stop despising weaknesses in others. I’ve had the attitude of a grumpy toddler, indulged my impatience, and been a serial killer in my heart. I need the gospel today.

Though I’d love to justify myself, there is no such justification. I’m a selfish man who would love for everything and everyone to make my life tolerable, predictable, and manageable. I assume the right to green lights at every intersection. I assume there will be an open cash register when I’m ready to check out …

Abba, Father, I’m so thankful that your love for me is steadfast and that I can count on new mercies every morning, including this morning, and all day long. I not only grieve my attitude, I do repent and abandon myself to the resources of the gospel.

Lord Jesus, I want and I need your power to rest on me and to settle my restless heart. I’ll not pray about next week or even tomorrow. Just give me the manna of gospel kindness for this one day. Help me to respond gently and not react rigidly to the weaknesses of others … Help me to love as you love me, for that is the bottom line and the top priority. I pray in your powerful name. Amen.