Thought for the Week

Love your Muslim neighbour

Dear Friends, Mosques in Birmingham are on heightened alert after five were attacked in the early hours of Thursday morning.  The five mosques are in the Aston area and at least one attack involved using a sledgehammer to break windows.  We can imagine how we would feel if we found our church buildings attacked.  Adil

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Esther

Dear Friends, Esther was a teenager when Boko Haram militants attacked her village in Nigeria’s Borno state.  She spent three years in captivity.  Offered the choice between marriage and slavery, she chose to be a slave.  She was still married off to a man who already had three wives.  Intimidation and sexual abuse...

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Kevin Spacey, Liam Neeson, Michael Jackson…

Dear Friends, I probably don’t need to tell you what these names have in common.  If so, then it’s easy enough to find out on the internet.  They have all become toxic in recent months, accused of things like sexual abuse, racism and child abuse.  And they’re not the only ones.  The list could be

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A man ablaze

Dear Friends, You may have heard the news that Michael Green died peacefully on Wednesday 6th February following a brief illness.  Many of us will remember Michael with great fondness and enormous gratitude as a persuasive evangelist, distinguished theologian and engaging author.  Even at St Stephen’s we have reason to thank God...

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Providence

Dear Friends, Do you believe that God has every detail of your life in his hands?  The places, the events and the times?  That’s what the Bible says!  In our evening services, we have been seeing God’s providence in the story of Joseph, in which his brothers clearly intended to harm him yet wonderfully “God intended it for

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It’s all about love

Dear Friends, In some ways the Christian life is really very simple: it’s all about love.  First of all, it’s about God’s love for us.  Apparently it’s not that easy for us to grasp that we really are loved by God, small, weak and sinful creatures that we are.  So Paul feels the need to

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How to walk into church (2)

Dear Friends, What do you think you’re coming to when you walk into church?  Your answer to that question will affect how you come: gladly or reluctantly; regularly or occasionally; asking what you’ll get out of it or seeking to serve others; expectant or resigned.  So what are we coming to? The New Testament word

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How to Walk into Church

Dear Friends, I don’t suppose most of us give much thought to how we walk into church. We just do it. Somehow it happens and there we are, sitting in our seats. And then we sit through church. And then a little while later we walk out of church. And it’s done for another week

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Subversive worship

Dear Friends, Have you realised that coming to church on Sunday is a subversive act? How can that be? It hardly feels subversive. Odd, perhaps, but subversive? It’s not as if our names are being taken by the authorities, or gatherings of more than two or three are prohibited, or church leaders are routinely disappearing.

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Leaving well

Dear Friends, I will never forget the sight of Archbishop Peter Jensen joining our family one morning for Bible reading and prayer after breakfast, wearing his pyjamas and dressing gown. And I will remember him for something more, and that is the clarity and faithfulness of his leadership, most recently as General Secretary of GAFCON

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