Brothers and Sisters,
Apparently, it’s winter. It’s 15 degrees, there is a wee bit of wind and rain and people are complaining about the cold. For us Scots this is what we call summer! But Annabel and I must be getting acclimatised because even we are feeling the cold! It’s amazing how quickly we adapt to the environment.
One of the unknowns about this Covid 19 situation and our enforced absence from meeting together is how it will affect things when we are all back together – as we are this Sunday. I suspect the ‘new normal’ will mean that there are churches who will find that whilst they may have gained some people online, they will lose some physically. Some will be more vulnerable and understandably want to stay away from public gatherings – but others will just simply have got into the habit of watching church with their slippers on and having ‘Sundays free’.
For those of us who can I hope we will remember Hebrews exhortation to believers: “ Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching” (Hebrews 10:23-25) Notice how Paul warns us about developing a ‘habit’ of not meeting together. And how he talks about the need for mutual encouragement as we see ‘the Day’ (that is the Day of judgement and of final salvation) approaching. We need to encourage one another.
In terms of Café Online can I encourage you to join us online and if you can, physically, this Monday. It was great to have our former pastor back with us on Monday. Simon was as sharp, witty and incisive as ever as we discussed the resurrection (you can access it on YouTube). This Monday our guests are Nathan and Nalini Pather – they are a South African Indian couple who are ministering here in Sydney. We are going to be looking at the great subject of Jesus as God and the Trinity (Chapter six of Magnificent Obsession). I realise that for some the thought of coming out on a cold Monday night is not particularly appealing – but it would be appreciated if we could have a few more people – to warm the room and create the atmosphere. Online Café only has three more to go – so take your opportunity now! And bring a friend.
Thanks to all who have contributed constructive ideas, and to those who have requested copies of the book. As before if you have any ideas and want to help feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
The first resource I want to mention this week is one of the best books on the Trinity – Donald Macleod’s Shared Life: The Trinity and the Fellowship of God’s People.
The second is a half hour discussion we had with John Lennox as we looked at AI and the future of human life – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l7T5Jv15aE0
Finally, here is a beautiful Trinitarian song from Sandra McCracken – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5I-bl29S8Eg
Yours in Christ