Kathy Larkman, contributor for today’s blog post
I only have to go to my email inbox to know that the new school year is around the corner! I have been inundated with a plethora of emails regarding different church rotas and upcoming events. Bring it on!
I am one who loves the changes of season, changes of schedule, new adventures- and the beginning of a school year is no different. Of course, I am in the lovely position of not having any children in school in my season of life. But I am happy to cheer you all in prayer who have this remarkable privilege and responsibility of parenting!
But I digress….
The start of school is a sign of new beginnings: New experiences. New challenges. New adventures. New teachers. New friendships. Renewing old friendships– and as followers of our Lord Jesus Christ, we are given a wider mentality about these new seasons.
We have heard it said many times in different ways: “What does God want me to do this year?” or, “What is God’s will for me as I begin this new season?” I have heard it said that a better question to ask God is “What do you want me to be?” As followers of Christ this question makes more sense. You see, God is more concerned with who you are than what you do.
His will for us as His “image bearers” (Genesis 1:27) is “being transformed into His image..which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” (2 Cor. 3:18) Jerry Bridges says so aptly, “Christlikeness is God’s goal for all those who trust in Christ, and that should be our goal also.”
I want to encourage you, and please encourage me too-instead of asking God “What should I do,” let us humbly ask the Lord daily in prayer, “Please help me to submit to you as Your image bearer to your transforming work in me. Show me your ways Lord and teach me your paths, lead me into your truth…so that I may be a reflection of You more everyday.”
God will answer our prayers as we seek His face. And the “to do’s” of our lives will fall into place…. one day at a time.
“If you’re God’s child, the gospel isn’t an aspect of your life, it IS your life; that is, it is the window through which you look at everything.” Paul Tripp
Priory Street (Corsham)
Grylls (1 Kings:19)
Christie (1 Kings:19)
6:00pm Gathering to Praise
Church on the Green (Rudloe)
Sunday 29th September at 5pm we will be holding a mission event
where we will get feedback from several of the recent mission trips that have
taken place, including the Uganda AIM trip which took place last week. We will serve tea/coffee and cake so if you
are able to provide cakes, biscuits etc. please speak to Wendy.
keys have gone missing from the outside key box. They are the main church key, the key to the
Debt/Finance office and the key to the church administrator’s office. If
someone has taken these keys to access the church or offices, please could they
return them to Alan Simon.
next midweek service will be held this Wednesday 21st August at
2pm. The text is Matthew 27.62 – 28.20. Eric
will be leading and preaching and there will be communion. Refreshments at 3pm.
week of prayer will start on Sunday 8th September this year. Gathering round the Word will now take place
on the 1st September (6pm) and Gathering to Pray will take place on
Sunday 8th September at 6pm to commence the week of prayer.
is a trolley of lost property in the coffee hall. Please take what belongs to you. Unclaimed items will be disposed of in two
Society in Swindon
Two roles available – full details at biblesociety.org.uk/about-us/jobs/, but in summary: Executive Support Assistant – Full-time position, closing date is 22-08-19 with interviews 03-09-19. Supporter Care Officer – Full-time position.
“Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another especially now that the day of His return is drawing near.” Hebrews 10:24-25 NLT
As you read this, our short term missions team is on Day 5 in growing in Christ as we serve Him. Tomorrow is our last day, and we thank you for your continued prayers.
As our team have been considering our discipleship and service under the Lordship of our Jesus Christ, we realize that our church family is an integral partnership in all of this. Although our journey in Christ is very personal, it isn’t private. Community is integral in the work of discipleship. As we as a missions team contemplate in Africa, I also encourage you to do the same. Is there someone you can come alongside this week in Christ? What are some ways that we can do this as individuals and as a church family?
My prayer for us is Paul’s prayer to the church: May “our love overflow more and more, and that we will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding in what really matters, so that we may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return. May we always be filled with the fruit of our salvation- the righteous character produced in our lives by Jesus Christ- for this will bring much glory and praise to God.” Amen
See you soon!
“Now all glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think!” Ephesians 3:20
As many of you know, Eddie and I and a team of nine are going out to Uganda tomorrow to serve Christ through coming alongside missionaries and their children for a week. We know that you are praying and we appreciate this as this is always a community endeavour for Christ’s Kingdom. Thank you.
There are two goals for our short-term mission team: First is service; and second is discipleship. These trips are as much a part of how we grow in Christ as it is about how we serve others.
Please pray for us as we endeavour to follow the paradigm of Jesus. I am reminded in the gospel of the feeding of the 5000 that Jesus fed the people through the disciples. Initially, the disciples focused on the problem of no food and not on God. But Jesus was teaching them about ministry and serving. Jesus was also teaching them about who He was. He gave to the disciples to distribute the food. In this way, Jesus’ disciples had to trust the Lord for it all. They gave as they received from Jesus. Through Christ’s three years on earth, He modelled intentional actions and habits in relationships with people in every day opportunities and hands on experience.
Isn’t it the same with all of us, whether we are in Rudloe, Corsham, or Africa? As followers of Jesus, we must bring our lives everyday to God in a spirit of obedience and sacrifice, no matter how insignificant…..or how confident we may think our gifts and talents are.
So please pray for us, and we will pray for you to that end. Thank you Lord.
Workers together for His Kingdom,
Wendy Prior, Guest Contributor for today’s blog post
See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labour or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendour was dressed like one of these. (Matthew 6.28)
Its lovely to have flowers in church during our services, and people have sometimes testified as to the powerful impact that they have had. They are a vivid reminder of the beauty and wonder of God’s creation – something which most of us can enjoy in our gardens, in parks, and sometimes in the open fields – and something which can be brought in to our services as a reminder of what God can do. His creative power is infinite, and it follows that His power to heal, to calm us and to uplift our spirits is just as great. I know of an occasion when a lady came into a service in some distress – she was a visitor – and said afterwards that she remembered little of what went on or what was said, but was greatly affected by the flowers on display which spoke to her and calmed her.
Those who support the flower ministry are contributing to a further objective too. Not everyone is able to go out and enjoy the beauty of flowers in their natural environment. There are quite a number of people known to us who have become housebound, and often the flowers go to one or another of them during the week, and this is greatly welcomed. In addition, there are people recently bereaved, people recently out of hospital, new parents, people with special birthdays, who are greatly encouraged when flowers are brought to them. It’s a point of contact in which the love of God and Christian fellowship can be expressed, both to CBC members and sometimes to others too, for whom it can be an opportunity to bring into the conversation the subject of CBC and whom we worship. It’s a rewarding ministry and we’re thankful to all who are involved.
Priory Street (Corsham)
9.15am Eddie Larkman
11.15am Eddie Larkman
6:00pm Gathering to Remember
Church on the Green (Rudloe)
10:00am Rob Durant
Prayer Diary for the WEC MK Training Course
continue to pray for the WEC training that is taking place at Priory Street : The hosts: the Durants, Fuggles,
Gorvins, Hoggs, Hurleys, Larkmans, Mitchells, Simons, Spruijts, Stephensons,
Wingraves. The participants: Nine adults from Australia, Brazil, Finland,
Germany, Netherlands, Senegal/Switzerland, the USA and the UK. The
caterers: Liz Perks and Jo Sheringham assisted by Kate Harding. The
drivers: Terry Pollard and Richard Davies, and others helping with driving, cleaning, coffee breaks, baking and
being on standby for emergencies! The
training concludes on Wednesday
are pleased to announce that at the last Church Meeting, Malcolm Gilbertson was
welcomed into church membership. Malcolm currently attends the congregation at
Church on the Green.
Seniors’ Summer Party
Christie would like to say a very big thank you to everyone who helped at the summer
party which took place at Priory Street last Saturday. It was a great success and was a blessing to
everyone who attended.
& Sue Morrell are due back from Oasis Centre today!
Lancaster leading Oakhall Iceland 21-30 Aug; 2-4 Sept AIM fellowship
mission team going to Uganda from 9-17 August.
Those going are : Eddie and Kathy Larkman, Dan Ovens, Chris Sapiano,
Rhiannon Price, Sharon Durant, Tom Price, Sara Stone, Joe Rowe, Joy Wingrave
and Josh Holmes. Please pray for their
building trip 21 Sept – 6 Oct. The team
consists of Martin Donovan, Tim Pearce, Coleen Fraser and Martin Sheringham.
PLEASE NOTE DURING SCHOOL
HOLIDAYS MOST SMALL GROUPS CLOSE…PLEASE CHECK WITH YOUR LEADER IF YOU ARE
Christine Coltman, contributor for today’s blog post
In preparing for this year’s studies in Colossians, I was reading the recommended Mark Meynell book, ‘Colossians and Philemon For You’. In the opening pages the author describes Paul’s claims about Jesus as truly ‘outrageous’. I read it and thought how jarring that was with my Sunday experience of God. I’ve gone to church all my life, surrounded by people who love singing praises to him and learning more about him. We are comfortable, unshocked and perfectly happy. Surely nothing about Jesus is that outrageous?
Then I began to think. How much do I limit God by my comfortable familiarity? Why does the truth about Jesus not blow my mind on a more regular basis? Paul’s claims about Jesus in chapter one of Colossians are big. He is the ‘firstborn over all creation’, the sustainer of everything – God himself. If I was as brave as I should be and told my non-Christian friends exactly what I believe about Jesus, they would be straight-out shocked. Jesus is that cute baby on Christmas cards, right? Yes, and he’s also the cosmic-creating, terrifyingly powerful, fearless ultimate hero who gave his life for me.
You may not know this about me but I love fantasy. Narnia, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter (and many less well-known novels that I can recommend!). I like big; I like unbelievable – I like high concept fantasies where the incredible happens. Dragons fly, magic is real, one person can save the whole universe. Show me a crime drama, or a soap and I’m not interested. I don’t want to see something that could be happening down the road from me – I want my imagination to soar.
I know I’m not the only one. The success of superhero movies alone show that people have a longing for the incredible. Critics would call it wish-fulfilment; I’d call it our hearts crying out for something more: the inbuilt belief that there is a real superhero out there who really has saved us.
I was never quite sure why fantasy was so appealing to me until I read a quote from Tolkein. He said that myths and fantasies are ‘echoes or memories of the truths that God had originally made known to Adam and Eve’ and that the gospel is ‘the true myth, the great fairy story in which all the elements of the pagan myths find their fulfilment.’
Suddenly it clicked. I like ‘big stories’ because I am part of a big story; the greatest story ever told. I want more because I am built for more. I dream of an incredible land where the unbelievable happens because that is where I am headed; because a God – the one true God – sacrificed himself for me in a cosmic spiritual battle which he won.
Jesus is counter-cultural. He is not comfortable – in fact, he’s pretty unbelievable, and I’m glad of that. I don’t want to stake my life on something small. But there’s also a huge challenge in that. As Mark Meynell says, ‘If Jesus really is the cosmic Lord, then how can we not dedicate every fibre of our being to him and his service?’
‘The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things and in him all things hold together.’
Colossians Chapter 1 v 15-17
Ark Family Service
Family service run by the Ark team (and others)
is taking place this afternoon at 3.30pm! It will be a short,
family-friendly service, followed by tea – perfect for inviting family and
friends who don’t normally come to church! Hope to see you there. Any
queries, please chat to Heather Chilcott.
Crossing cultures for Jesus – Meet the
During the WEC
week, on Wednesday 24th July at 7.45pm at CBC, there will be an opportunity to
meet new mission workers from all over the world. Come and hear the stories of
eight people aged 18 to 30 plus who are about to embark on overseas
missions. See Steve and Gill Bryant for more details. Hope to see you there!
CAKES and BISCUITS
needed for WEC training course
– Friday, over the last two weeks in July.
Either leave baked donations in the church kitchen no earlier than the
Sunday before, clearly labelled – ie. for WEC use and type of cake – or drop
them off during that two week period so we have a staggered run of goodies! Speak to Liz Perks/Jo Sheringham if you have
any queries. MANY THANKS!
9:15ers’ BBQ – 28th July
This will be held at the home of Tim and Vicky
Stephenson (63 Pickwick Rd, use The Porch or Springfield car parks) on Sunday
28th July. It will be a bring and share and someone will be co-ordinating
(volunteer?). Come over after church and it’s expected to finish around
mid-afternoon. If you have a camping chair or rug please bring it but if that’s
not possible, don’t worry we’ll find something suitable for everyone! Chat to Vicky or Tim if you are unsure about
Diary for the WEC MK Training Course
you for your prayers for us! Please also pray especially for The hosts: the Durants, Fuggles,
Gorvins, Hoggs, Hurleys, Larkmans, Mitchells, Simons, Spruijts, Stephensons,
The participants: Nine adults from Australia, Brazil, Finland, Germany, Netherlands, Senegal/Switzerland, the USA and the UK. The caterers: Liz Perks and Jo Sheringham assisted by Kate Harding. The drivers: Terry Pollard and Richard Davies, and others helping with driving, cleaning, coffee breaks, baking and being on standby for emergencies!
summer holidays are commencing soon! Please check
with your life group leader regarding your small group.
… Upcoming dates…
24th July: Midweek
service, 2pm; meet the team (WEC), 7:45pm
28th July: 9:15
congregational meeting, 11am
31st July: WEC week
7th August: Midweek
21st August: Midweek service,
23rd August: Soul
Survivor (youth event)
Sharon Durant, contributor for today’s blog
A few years ago, someone asked me that question. I mentally reviewed my friends — people who grew up on my street, people I was at school with, university, people I worked with, people I saw at the children’s play dates. I know a lot of people! But trying to think of a friend, a true friend, who walks shoulder to shoulder with me in Christ, who reliably keeps in touch and selflessly keeps on loving me and giving me truth? At that moment in my life, I had one.
To my shame, my list of ‘one’ didn’t even include the Lord Jesus! Since I was asked that question, God’s been taking me on a journey of what it means to HAVE friends and what it means to BE a friend. I’ve found two amazing places for friends:
1) Christ! Jesus himself commented that no one has greater love than
laying down their life for a friend (John 15:13). That is exactly what
he did. I offered nothing, there was no favour I could return, I
couldn’t even bring a pudding, but he kindly saw my need of a Saviour
and met it before I even asked. And then, even better, he has the Holy
Spirit is in my life. The Bible describes him as Comforter (John 14:26),
the Guide, the one who points to the Truth (John 16:13) and who walks
with me every day (Galatians 5:25). The hymn writer was right when he
wrote, “What a friend we have in Jesus!”
2) Church! The church is full of people walking in the same spiritual
direction as me, people who are also aware of their own sin but being
changed to be more holy, like Jesus. I picked up this little book “True
Friendship” (click on true friendship for link) which gives excellent pointers for how to wisely make and keep friends in church, walking shoulder to shoulder. I have read, studied, re-read, bought and given away this book time and time again; I heartily recommend it! It has helped me to be realistic in what I expect of my friends, and what they can expect from me, and is overflowing with biblical wisdom to be blessed and be a blessing.
So. A question to think about over the summer: Who are your friends?