Saturday, 21 January 2012

Turning intentions to reality

We will soon be heading into the 4th week of the new year and already 1/12th of the year is nearly through. Good intentions have stayed just that, intentions and the things we thought we might do haven't quite got into swing yet!  You know what I mean!

Here at RFC one of the things that we are aware of is that we have grown significantly and the people that we are growing with are taking a bit of time to get involved in the joy of serving.  The main reason for this is that there is no means of knowing what areas of church life need help at any given time. Other reasons are, however, that our good intentions to get involved do not materialize into reality and months can go past before we have decided what we will do.

I will therefore periodically, be putting a post up that showcases an area of church life and what there is to do in it, so our good intentions can be made reality.

For now though, why don't you decide today to be someone who will get stuck in to a serving area. The various areas are listed below and you can leave a comment to tell me that you would like to get involved or go via the 'getting involved' page on the website.

  • Creche (morning only)
  • Kids Church (morning only)
  • The Edge (Youth)
  • Student Team
  • SUPA (Set Up & Pack Away)
  • Welcome Team
  • Host Team
  • Music
  • PA / Audio Visual 
  • HOPE (ministry for adults with learning difficulties)
  • Teas and Coffees (morning only)

Friday, 20 January 2012

What is Foundations and Who is it for?

It's the start of a new year and Christmas is way behind us.  The resolutions have already started to be broken.  However, one of those resolutions might have been to come back to Jesus, or give your life to Him  for the first time, or even just to come back to the basics so that the Christian life doesn't feel quite so complex and hard theologically.  If that is you then this is for you.

On the last Tuesday of this month, Rachel Green and I will be hosting the first evening of our Foundations.  These evenings are called foundations for 2 reasons.

#1 The name of the book we use to stimulate discussion is called Foundations and is written by John Groves
#2 Because these evenings are to build grow and strengthen our foundations in Christ.

The evenings are designed to be open for all, meaning they are an ideal next step after Alpha, they are ideal if you are new in your faith and they are ideal as a refresher of why you believe and do all that you do in teh name of Jesus!

Foundations is a great way to get to know a new bunch of people, and a great place to get to understand why we do certain things as a church.

Each week we will journey through subjects in an easy and open environment:

Week 1: Personal Foundations - looking at faith and baptism in water and the Spirit
Week 2: A New Creation - a fresh reminder of who we are in Christ and all He achieved for us (you can never know this enough!)
Week 3: Kingdom Life - what does it mean to live as a Christian in all areas of our lives?
Week 4: Kingdom Warfare - we have a real enemy, how does he work and how do we live in the victory Christ won?
Week 5: Jesus is Building His Church - What is church and what does it mean to participate?
Week 6: Belonging to Church - As it says on the tin, but aimed at what it means to belong to RFC (you may already be a member but always good to be reminded)
Week 7: Sharing your Faith - These foundations could be the foundations for your friends and family as they come to know Jesus, we are called to invite them to meet Him!

You can book in by leaving a comment on here or by contacting me via the foundations page of the website found on this link.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

The year ahead and why

A new year has ensued and it's probably time that I started updating this blog a little more often than I do.  I find that at times I have much to say and at other times I cannot even face looking at the icon on the computer screen that taunts me and tells me that i have not written for ages.  I decided before Christmas that I would start again in the new year and so here I am.  Anyway on with the post!

I am currently looking at a few events that the community of RFC can enjoy together.  The idea of the events is to provide an environment where people can socialize together, get to know new people and feel free to invite others in. They are not outright evangelistic but do provide a chance to showcase the talent that is in the church and further afield.  We are looking at another acoustic night, a choirs evening and a comedy night, spread throughout the year.

There will be two Alpha courses this year; one starting in April off the back of Easter Sunday and one at the end of September.  Alpha has always been the prominent way in which God has moved amongst us in salvation power.  Being in a place where people can feel free to ask questions and disagree, knowing that no one is going to judge them, is a wonderful thing in our culture.  When we stop seeing fruit we will stop doing Alpha, but for now we continue.

We are inviting a couple of guest evangelists to some and be with us this year one in either half of the year.  They are yet to confirm availability but I will of course let you know when I do.

This year sees the diamond jubilee of the queens coronation.  The council have asked if the churches of South Reading can put on some sort of event to feed the local community. We would like to put on a street party down Northumberland Avenue if the council agree the road closures.  We will be working with the other churches of South Reading to cater for some 4000 people over a 3 hour window.  This is such a great opportunity to serve and get to know the people in whose community we meet.

We will also be looking to put on a couple of Saturday mornings this year to do some training in evangelism.  We will look at some basics on why and some practical things that we can do.  Dates for this are to be confirmed.

Why do we do all of these things?  Why do we want to help others know this Jesus that we love and follow?  Because he told us to, well yes he did, but who ever did anything because they were told to and did it with a good heart?  We do it because we know that it is only in Jesus that we found true acceptance, significance and love.  We do it because we, like God, should want none to perish.  We do it because someone once loved us enough to introduce us to Jesus.  We do it because we are loved and we love.

None of these things save anyone, Jesus does, but we need to bring them to places where they can first have their presuppositions of Christianity eroded and then introduce them to Jesus through Alpha, visiting speakers, baptism meetings, father's day and mother's day, Easter and Christmas meetings and of course our Sunday gatherings.

I am looking forward to a year where we see salvation and I am praying we will see it like we have never seen it before.  When the carol singing season starts again this year, i am trusting that many more will be singing Hark the Herald Angels Sing not because it is a twee song to sing at that time of year, but because they firmly believe in the one the song is about.  My prayer is simple - LORD, USE ME!  Is yours the same?