Because Magazine March/April 2019

February 22, 2019

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Because Magazine March/April 2019

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Because March/April 2019

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Because Magazine February 2019

January 22, 2019

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Because Magazine February 2019

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Because Magazine February 2019

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If they matter to you, let them know

November 29, 2018

As I’m sitting at my computer a news report has come in telling of the murder of John Allen Chau by an endangered tribe in India’s Andaman and Nicobar islands. Fishermen who took him to North Sentinel Island say tribespeople shot him with arrows and left his body on the beach. Chau, a self-proclaimed adventurer, was engaged on missionary work and in a statement his family said, “He was a beloved son, brother, uncle and best friend to us. To others he was a Christian missionary…He loved God, life and helping those in need, and he had nothing but love for the Sentinelese people.” Then incredibly they added, “We forgive those reportedly responsible for his death.”

This experience made me think about the fragility of life and that I shouldn’t wait until after someone has died to say how much I loved in a eulogy. There is family around me that I need to tell how much I love them, and friends I need to tell how much I value their friendship before it’s too late.

As a Christian it has impressed me that God told his Son how much he loved him and how pleased he was with him (Matthew 3:17). I need to take a leaf out of God’s book, how about you?

Have a good week,

Barry Robinson

Because Magazine December 2018

November 29, 2018

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Because Magazine December 2018

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Because Magazine December 2018

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Because Magazine September 2018

August 21, 2018

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Because Magazine September 2018

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Because Magazine September 2018 pdf

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Future Plans

July 20, 2018

London RainThis week has been a frustrating time for many of us who live in the British Isles as it has become clear that there is no consensus in the British Parliament about what the UK’s relationship will look like after the 29th of March 2019.

It sometimes seems like the UK government has no plan, and that our future is being carelessly left to the whims of politicians and whatever time will bring.

This same claim is sometimes brought against God. That there is no great plan of which humanity is a part and that what happens to us is solely time and chance.

The Bible tells a different story though. It tells us that God so loved the world, so loved you and me, that even before the universe was created God had chosen to give us his son, Jesus Christ. That God planned from the beginning to make his dwelling among us and that in Jesus Christ we have life and hope, no matter how dreary and dark the world seems.

That God’s love for us is so resolute and unchangeable that nothing can separate us from it, not even the mess we might make of Brexit, or of this planet or even of our lives.

Turn to Jesus, for in him is the hope of the world.

Gavin Henderson

The best defence?

July 13, 2018

Is collective defence still a good idea in the 21stcentury? Should nations join together to face a common threat? What about NATO? Is its future in jeopardy?

In the European press this week there’s been a lot of talk about the World Cup, Brexit, immigration, the encouraging news about the rescue of the schoolboys in Thailand, and also concerns expressed about the West’s defence capability.

Call him a dreamer, but Jesus Christ had something revolutionary to say about defence. He said it begins on a very personal level, with how we deal with each other on a day to day basis. His defence strategy wasn’t welcomed by his countrymen, who wanted to arm themselves against the forces of Rome. You may have heard of what Jesus said. His words were, “love your enemies”! It’s quite startling, isn’t it? But should we not arm ourselves first, just in case? It’s not exactly what he said or what he did, is it?

And it begins with us. You and me. In the home, on the street, at the workplace. Pray to Jesus that he would help you. Do good to those who don’t like you, or hate you, or speak ill of you. Love them.

Love.

It’s the best defence.

Let’s turn to Jesus and let him help us love our enemies.

james.henderson@gracecom.church

Because Magazine July 2018

June 29, 2018

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Because Magazine July 2018

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Because Magazine July 2018 pdf

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The Beginning of Time

February 2, 2018

I was making up for lost time this week by watching catch-up TV and I came across an interview with an horologist.

He was talking about the history of timepieces, starting with the first crude and inaccurate mechanical clocks. Then, around 1650, the invention of the pendulum revolutionised the time keeping business, enabling the production of precision clocks and watches. Today’s timepieces are incredibly accurate; the current best being the 3D quantum gas atomic clock which will not lose or gain a single second over 15 billion years.

Nowadays it’s hard to imagine a time before we had devices that can measure time. Even harder to imagine a time before time itself was a thing.

Scientists conjecture that time probably came into being at the event they call the Big Bang. The early Christian philosopher Augustine said time was a part of God’s creation, so time didn’t happen until we did. Interestingly, science and Christianity broadly agree that time didn’t exist until matter existed.

So if God created time alongside everything else, the next question is why? Since God existed before time began, the only logical answer is, he made time for us to live in.

A staggering thought, but also an immensely encouraging one. Isn’t it nice to know that the creator of the unverse has all the time in the world for you?

Peter Mill

All the lonely people

January 26, 2018

On the day the government appointed a minister to tackle loneliness Chris Hinds, managing director at Saatchi PR consultancy, cheekily tweeted ‘Can’t work out why the government have only appointed one minister for loneliness.’ It was an amusing tweet, but loneliness is no joke for the estimated 9 million adults in the UK who are lonely. Prime Minister Theresa May, acting on a recommendation from the Jo Cox commission, said that ‘isolation is a sad reality of modern life for too many people.’ Recent studies have shown that loneliness affects people as diverse as the elderly, new mothers, young disabled adults and refugees. The UK has never been so populous and yet people have never felt so lonely. King David’s words in Psalm 68:5-6 (NIV) have never been more pertinent: ‘A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families…’

The Christian church is God’s family, and is in a unique position to offer a healthy community that can help alleviate loneliness; it is, therefore, incumbent on all Christians to be welcoming and inclusive. Loving relationships are the antidote to loneliness; the more Christians are warm, friendly, and hospitable, offering a safe haven from the world, the more loneliness will be eased. The Beatles song ‘Eleanor Rigby’ implores us to ‘look at all the lonely people,’ and asks ‘where do they all belong?’ The answer is they belong in God’s family. Can we, the church, look for the lonely people and welcome them in? It’s becoming increasingly critical that we do.

Barry Robinson

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