Yes, I'm 50 today! And I wanted to start the day by saying thank you. Thank you to God for the life he has given me with such a great family and wonderful friends and an amazing church.
When you reach certain landmarks in life, it does cause you to reflect a bit. I am looking back at almost 24 year of being part of our church, most of that time being a leader. I've seen it grow from about 60 adults meeting in Highgrove Church, to now well over 1,000 across three congregations. I do love our church, not because it is perfect or because it is the best church in the world, but I love it because it is the Bride of Jesus. I look around on our Sunday gatherings and I see people who are genuinely trying to follow Jesus to the best of their ability, I see people who haven't got a faith yet feeling at home and welcomed, I see people who want to serve God not just on Sundays, but through out the week in their workplaces, communities and homes, I see people finding forgiveness, freedom and healing.
Of course there are struggles and things to improve on. Some people may feel the worship isn't inspiring enough, or the teaching not deep enough, the coffee isn't strong enough or the children's work not entertaining enough, some feel people don't care enough or Sundays aren't creative enough, the PA isn't loud enough or we don't pray enough. BUT Church is not a consumer experience, it is family! On a wedding day the husband loves the bride and seems oblivious to flaws that might seem obvious to others. My hope is to love our church like that. The church is a body of people with such diverse gifts, backgrounds and opinions - together, working in unity, we are a power for good to see the world changed as God's Kingdom comes on earth as it is in heaven.
On Sunday I was speaking about the Lordship of Jesus and was looking back over the past 50 years of my life encouraging us all to live with Jesus as Lord of our lives. If you missed it you can listen on line by clicking here. If you just want to see the photos of me with hair, as a baby or on our wedding day then click here and look at the "study notes"!!
I feel it is a real privilege serving this church and thank you for being part of it.