Smashed Windows

There’s been an air of discouragement around recently, with friends struggling and moving out, difficult situations and a slowdown of momentum in the wider church. Things have generally felt a bit stuck at home.

When God wants to speak to us as a whole group we often find he’ll say the same thing at once to several of us. Maybe it’s to make sure it filters through, but most importantly I think it gives us a unity of heart as we adjust our course.

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New stuff starting tonight

We’ve been talking a lot recently at Adams Avenue about stuff, our future, our houses, what we want to do, this and that.

After talking and praying and talking and talking and eating and talking some more we want to relaunch in some way, to have a bit of a weekly rhythm of things that we do.

We’re thinking prayer and worship gigs, an open house evening, an Acts 29 ministry training thing, and some other stuff.

Now, one of the things we want to do each week, as it goes, is a bible study.

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Lucky Are The Unlucky – Praying Through the Beatitudes

The beatitudes.

Those compelling, befuddling, counterintuitive bombshells. Nine bullet points spoken by Jesus, now respected by millions in every nation and religion the world over.

It seems impossible to properly get a handle on them, but they themselves have gripped so many people. It seems impossible to understand them abstracted from lived experience, but as we start to read and live them those few words provide a comfort that’s not pat, a wisdom that confounds and a pattern for a new kind of society. Those few words have fomented many movements that are doing their bit to redeem the trajectory of humanity.

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A few ideas for Christian small groups

Joseph Solomon explains a few simple practices that can help small groups grow deep and rich. We’ve reinvented and enjoyed a few of these, they’ve been very helpful.

Stuff covered:

  • Inductive bible study
  • Hotseat (or as we call it “grill a brother”)
  • Missional community (though I think he’s talking about missional activity as missional community does everything in the context of mission)
  • Shout-out night

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Our Sabbath Week

Right after coming back from the bible week, without conferring Josh and I both thought it would be worthwhile for us to each spend a week out of normal life resting, praying and considering the future. We’d already arranged a couple of things last week including tea around a neighbour’s house, so we delayed it until this week. Now we’re into our second day.

Josh, Sam and I are staying in local community houses and still working during the day, and Andy’s jetted off to bonny Scotland to be with his family. It will be strange not seeing the regulars like our neighbours the Bannisters, Rhiannon, Marley, Ali, et al.

My pad for the week is with the welcoming folk at Cornhill, a country manor just a few yards from the house in which I grew up over sixteen years. As well as simple relaxation it’ll be a good opportunity to spend some time with my gran and mum who live on-site, and I’m sure I’ll spend quite a bit of time chatting with Jesus while walking out in the fields too.

Cornhill Manor