Showing posts with label St Neots (River). Show all posts
Showing posts with label St Neots (River). Show all posts

30 August 2010

St Neots (River) - A container and a healed leper

David Spanberger and I visited River Church this morning for their morning meeting.

Making a jar of clayYahshua breathes his Spirit into the lives of his followers. Sometimes this results in pictures, sometimes thoughts or ideas, sometimes actions that help those around. Today for me it took the form of words. While we were singing, this is what I was given.
Can you contain the presence of the Most High?
Can a clay jar hold a hoard of gold? Yes! It can!

Out of your mouth will come my voice.
Out of your hands will come my gifts.
Out of your eyes will shine my smile.
Out of your heart will beat my heart.
For I AM the One who lives.
You no longer live but I live in you through my Son.
I feel these words are for the people at River Church, but they are also for all believers everywhere.

After the singing, Rob McFarlane read Luke 17:11-19. He mentioned 1 Thessalonians 5:18 where we read that in everything we are to give thanks. We are to have 'an attitude of gratitude'.

Rob then spoke on the passage from Luke, explaining that the grateful attitude of the Samaritan leper is an example of the heart attitude we, too, should have. And it seemed significant to me that one of the ten lepers was a Samaritan.

This man would have seen very little point in presenting himself to the priests because he put no store in the sacrifice they would offer (Samaritans did not worship in the Temple at Jerusalem). But at first he was obedient and tagged along with the others although it didn't mean very much to him.

But the moment he realised he was healed he came straight back to the one he knew to be a priest of the Most High - Yahshua. He is indeed the Great High Priest who would offer himself as a sacrifice for Jew and non-Jew alike.

Coming to Yahshua as he did was effectively a prophetic act. He was saying, 'Look, this is the true Priest for he has made me whole! He was more perceptive than the Jewish lepers who simply followed the instruction they had been given according to the light of the Law. They went to see the priests of the old covenant. In contrast, this man returned immediately to the High Priest of the new covenant. How awesome is that!

There are two great differences between the Jewish lepers and the Samaritan leper. The Jewish lepers didn't show the same level of gratitude, but more fundamentally they failed to recognise their healer for who he was. They saw him only as a rabbi ('Yahshua, teacher') and not as King and High Priest.

And this King and High Priest is the One that we contain, jars of clay though we are. What an incomparable salvation we have in him, Yahshua the Messiah, living Son of the Most High!

07 November 2009

Moggerhanger - Temporal or eternal?

Jim invited me to a River Church men's breakfast meeting at Moggerhanger Park. In the Moggerhanger dining roomDale Hewitt from Dreambuilders Church in Perth, Australia, spoke to us after the meal. He first met Rob Macfarlane in Harare in 1995, long before Rob came to St Neots and founded River Church.

After a marvellous full English breakfast we settled down to listen to what Dale had to say.

He began by pointing out the pressures on men to succeed, especially in modern times. And this is pressure that's always focused on achieving things that are temporal, things that will not remain for eternity. It occurred to me that this is just as true for women although the specific pressures are sometimes different.

Reading Ephesians 1:15-23 as a basis, Dale explained that this is actually Paul's prayer for the Ephesian church. At heart it's about the fulfillment of Father's purpose for your life - his purpose, not yours. Paul begins with praise (verses 3-14) before moving on to his petitions. This is such a good principle. There's an eternal perspective here, we should always praise with eternity firmly in mind, it's not just about the blessings we have in the here and now.

This raises a question, 'What am I going to leave as an eternal deposit when my life in this world is finished?'

Paul's prayer for the Ephesians is that they'd have greater intimacy with the Almighty, greater vision, and greater power. Why? So that they might grow! And how do we demonstrate our increasing knowledge and reverence of the Lord? Putting it another way, what do we do that is different from what the world does? We will give him more time in our lives and we'll have an increased passion for his presence and for his people. We are workers in his Kingdom, not rulers over our own kingdom.

Jesus is not just a friend, he is much more than that, he's the King of Kings, the creator of the universe and Lord over everything. Do people know that he's a priority in our lives? They should do!

The more intimacy we have with the Lord the more we can see where we're going, the greater our vision. Like the blind man at Bethsaida, getting closer is the key to having our eyes opened and opened fully. In Matthew 5:14-16, Jesus tells us that like him, we are the light of the world. As we touch people's lives they begin to see by his light shining through us, they begin to see 'like trees walking'.

If we're born of the Spirit we will know his power in our lives (Ephesians 1:19-23). As we focus on Jesus he will reveal the path for our lives and guide us along it - and he will be glorified in the process.

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