Thoughts

Did Jesus rise from the dead?

Referendum

voteIn or out? We’re going to hear a lot of this for the next few months aren’t we! As yet I don’t feel I understand enough to be able to make an informed decision but when June 23rd comes I will have thought and prayed about it carefully and will go with what I think is right for our country.

It is a hugely important decision and whether we elect to stay or leave the EU there will be long lasting implications which will affect not just us but of course people in other countries too.

The decisions we make in our own personal lives usually affect not only us but others too. The implications of wrong decisions (and I have made them!) often have to be lived with for the rest of our lives. We may regret we ever made a particular choice and wish we could go back and ‘unmake’ it – but of course we can’t. We may perhaps feel guilty and find that hard to live with.

I am so glad that the God I know, love and serve is willing to forgive us through Jesus. We have to ask him though and really mean it. We can’t go back, but we can go forward . When we invite him into our lives he’ll help us to make better choices in the future.

As far as God is concerned, is he in or outside of your life? That’s something only you can decide.

Julie Shimizu (Rev)

Beginnings

newyear4761

It often makes us feel good to have a fresh start, move forward in a new direction and have hope that things will be better.  The beginning of the New Year is an incentive for resolutions to abound -often however not lasting longer than the end of January! We don’t always see things through and commitment and determination wane easily. Oh well there’s always next year …..

New beginnings are not necessary exciting though. They can be scary, unknown, unwanted, unexpected, unfamiliar, lonely. Life after the death of a spouse or the sudden loss of a job perhaps. Life is full of changes and challenges, joys and sorrows. We have recently celebrated the birth of Emmanuel – God with us and willing to stay with us through those  changes and challenges, joys and sorrows. If we invite him to.

A new beginning with God means we can have that fresh start, new direction and the assurance that things will be very much better with him by our side. Plus his commitment to us will never wane.

How about that for a new beginning?

Rev Julie Shimizu

‘Getting to grips with Genesis’

 

 

genesis-baner-web

We begin a new series starting from 3rd January for a few months, going back to the beginning of the Bible and looking through the book of Genesis. There is much to learn from this powerful book and we pray we’ll all have receptive hearts to hear what God might have to say to each us through it.
Julie Shimizu

Read Scripture

This Bible reading plan, from The Bible Project  looks good to sign up to for 2016 – See videos below for more information.

  Check it out and then sign up for it! HERE 

As they say “Read Scripture Know God”

No Offence intended

This is the advert banned by cinemas because it might offend some people.

Find out more about the ad at Just Pray UK

 

Show someone they are loved

John Lewis’ poignant Christmas advertisement has once again highlighted the sadness of many of those who live alone. But in it we see the joy of the ‘man on the moon’ when the little girl reaches out to him with concern and love.

Christmas can be an exceptionally hard time for those who are alone. Some don’t have family or many friends or perhaps they live far away and don’t get to see them very often.

My mother was always so grateful to God that she had her family around her and that she often saw them. I lived and looked after her for 26 years until, after spending the last few months in a care home, she died at the age of 96. She was not lonely.

But I know that is not the case for everyone. Thankfully, there are charities and organisations in the town which are well aware of this issue of loneliness, especially for the elderly. Not least of course, the many churches in the town who welcome people into their church families.

There is a verse in the bible which says ‘God sets the lonely in families’ (Psalm 68:6). It is wonderful to be part of a loving church family and many can testify to that. However, there are things we can do as individuals too. Perhaps there is a ‘man on the moon’ that you know – maybe in your road or mine that we could visit or invite in for a cup of tea and show some love and care to? If we all reached out to even one person, I’m sure there wouldn’t be so many lonely people in Horsham.

Julie Shimizu

LCBC are not promoting the supermarket but their excellent depiction of showing someone that they are loved.

Building A Kingdom Culture

kc-02

We have completed our ‘Sustainable Power’ sermon series where we thought about removing various blockages in our personal lives that stop us from being fruitful for God.

With effect from 6th September, we start a new series taking a fresh look at our church with a focus on building up. How can we corporately be more intentional about building a kingdom culture, not on the ways of the world, but upon the values we hold dear as a church which are:
1. Devotion to God – being worshipful, prayerful, committed to his word,
2. Love for one another – forgiving, honest, accepting.
3. A desire to grow – in faith, in holiness, in fruitfulness.
4. A willingness to serve – sacrificially, lovingly, with humility and
5. Readiness to go – proclaiming the gospel in word and deed.

Please pray as we go through this series and let’s see what God will do.

Wally is preparing some notes to go alongside the series that we can look at in life groups for further discussion, consolidation and prayer.

Julie Shimizu

Our office is on the move!

house moveWith effect from 12th August 2015, our office address for postal correspondence will be:
1 Meadow Close, Horsham, West Sussex.  RH12 4JS

We have a new telephone contact number:   01403 541688

We also have a new contact email address:
life@life-baptist.org.uk

Please amend your address book!

 

Make a difference with a smile

It had been a very long time since I had taken anything to the Refuse and Recycling Site at Hop Oast.

It wasn’t a task I particularly relished but I’m in the process of moving house so a few trips have become necessary.

Well, I was so pleasantly surprised at how well organised I found it, how clear the signs were, the layout of the parking and the general atmosphere. There were several people on hand to help if necessary and I did need some help so I approached one young man (he said he was from Poland) and asked him.  He was so polite, willing, cheerful and smiley and he made my trip there an altogether pleasant experience!  Well done I want to say to the workers and management of Hop Oast for brightening up the site with your helpfulness, attitude and work ethic.

Wherever we go, whatever we have to do and whoever we meet in our daily lives is made so much better if there are smiles, willingness and helpfulness. A smile costs nothing but could mean everything to someone.

Job once said ‘When I smiled at them, they scarcely believed it; the light of my face was precious to them’ (Job 29:24)

Whose life could you brighten up today?IMG_0369

Rev Julie Shimizu