making and maturing disciples of Jesus Christ in Birmingham and for the world

Thought for the Week

Three ways to live

Dear Friends, Tertullian, the ancient church father, is sometimes quoted as saying, “Just as Jesus was crucified between two thieves, so the gospel is ever crucified between these two errors.”  (It seems he may not actually have said this, but the principle remains sound).  What are these two errors to be avoided?  Tim Keller calls […]

A song for our times

Dear Friends, The song ‘Ancient of Days’ by City Alight seems particularly apt for our times, with all their political turmoil both within and without the United Kingdom: “Though the nations rage, kingdoms rise and fall There is still one King reigning over all So I will not fear for this truth remains: That my […]

I need Christ

Dear Friends, It was somewhat dispiriting to return from holiday and open the September edition of Evangelicals Now (an excellent paper which I would highly recommend).  And not because it means that holiday is over and summer is slipping away, but because one of the first articles my eyes fell on announced that American pastor […]

Culture Vulture?

How do you think about culture? Are you a “look in” kind of Christian? Do you try to ignore what’s going on out in the world, stick your fingers in your ears and sing loudly about Jesus coming back, trying to keep safe from being infected by the world’s values? Or are you a “lash […]

Everyone’s a worshipper

Dear Friends, Worship is a bit like faith: everyone worships something or someone, just as everyone has faith in something or someone.  The only question is:  What/whom do we worship?  In what/whom do we have faith? Here is what the novelist David Foster Wallace said to the 2005 graduating class at Kenyon College, Ohio: “Everybody […]


Dear Friends, Have you noticed how much there is in the New Testament about hospitality?  We are told to “practise” it (Romans 12:3) – apparently it requires effort.  We are to offer it “without grumbling” (1 Peter 4:9).  We’re not to “forget” to do it (Hebrews 13:2) – our guests may be angels.  Church leaders “must […]

All things? For good? God? Really?

Dear Friends, Romans 8:28 has long been a special verse for me.  My mother ‘gave’ it to me when I moved away from home.  And it’s the beginning of the passage Helen and I had for our wedding.  It’s one I’ve returned to many, many times.  It has been in my mind again recently as […]

Well done, everyone!

Dear Friends, There was a wonderful sense at our ‘Explore’ events last weekend of the whole church family being ‘on mission’ together.  There were so many people involved in organising the weekend and publicising events, inviting friends and family, neighbours and colleagues, coming along themselves and bringing others, setting up and clearing away, and not […]

A sceptic meets Jesus

Dear Friends, This weekend we have been following ‘A sceptic’s guide to Jesus.’  What better, then, to reflect on an incident when a sceptic actually met Jesus?  The story is familiar enough.  Thomas, one of Jesus’ disciples, told the other disciples that he would not believe that Jesus had been raised from the dead “unless […]

The leader we need

Dear Friends, Whoever becomes the new leader of the Conservative Party will also become the new Prime Minister of this country.  So, whatever our political affiliation, it has implications for all of us.  What kind of leader do we need, then?  Some will be hoping for a leader who will unite the Conservatives.  Others will be hoping for someone […]

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