Sunday, 27 February 2011

Rob Bell... controversy...etc...

So I could write about the failings of my beloved team... but sometimes it's just too soon... and the loss in the carling cup final is one of them

Instead I'll share the video/book release that is causing quite the stir in the christian blogging bubble...

Rob Bell (author of Velvet Elvis, Sex God, etc...) has released this video to promote his new book "Love Wins"

LOVE WINS. from Rob Bell on Vimeo.

And here's the description to go with it...
Fans flock to his Facebook page, his NOOMA videos have been viewed by millions, and his Sunday sermons are attended by 10,000 parishioners—with a downloadable podcast reaching 50,000 more. An electrifying, unconventional pastor whom Time magazine calls “a singular rock star in the church world,” Rob Bell is the most vibrant, central religious leader of the millennial generation. Now, in Love Wins: Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived, Bell addresses one of the most controversial issues of faith—the afterlife—arguing that a loving God would never sentence human souls to eternal suffering. With searing insight, Bell puts hell on trial, and his message is decidedly optimistic—eternal life doesn’t start when we die; it starts right now. And ultimately, Love Wins.

Justin Taylor from the gospelcoalition quickly wrote a response on his blog here

As with many of these things, I'm waiting for the book to see what he's actually talking about and I'm sure it will make interesting reading.

Friday, 25 February 2011

Community & Church... a solution = church social network?

So we all know that in the last few years, social networks have radically changed the world (for the better or worse is up for debate...). The rise of facebook/twitter/etc has meant churches have had to jump onto the social network band wagon or perhaps miss out on a easy/obvious way of connecting with its members.

Similarly as churches have grown, we are seeing the problem of how to build community within churches becoming a bigger one. Most people would agree that what gets people to stay is thriving community and feeling part of something quickly...

And so because of the rise of social networks and the need for authentic community, we're seeing the development of the idea of church specific social networks.

Here are 2 examples

The Table Project - Introduction from The Table Project on Vimeo.

It's interesting to see how these companies are linking the idea of community and social networks and saying that this can be the solution that church leaders are looking for. I find it really intriguing that the first video identifies that social networks are about "me" and broadcasting who I am, and trying to ensure this doesn't happen with "the table project."

In 10 years time will we see churches having church specific networks as a norm? Or will this simply fall down as it fails to replicate authentic community... I don't know the answer, but it will be interesting to see what happens

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Musician Team Meeting

On Tuesday night, the musician team gathered together for the first time this year. It was a brilliant time where we worshipped together, celebrated what has happened over the last year, reminded ourselves of some important things to keep in our minds and prayed for this coming year and over some needs within the team.

The musician team are brilliant... they work diligently & humbly and it's a real privilege to serve with these guys and girls. Whether it's at a Friday night practice after a long week or packing down at the end of the evening service I love the commitment that they all show and their willingness to make things work.

We're served as a team brilliantly by our deacon Kat Starling who's passion and joy is so infectious, as evident by tuesday night. After the meeting I think it's fair to say we're all excited by what this year holds for the church and how we can contribute.

Things to thank God for in 2010:

* Full bands throughout the year!
* Serving youth at Butlins
* Evening meeting
* New songs including some of our own!
* New worship leaders
* Carol concert

Things to pray for this year:
* Drummers
* A team of musicians for the evening service
* Diversity within teams
* Creativity in sounds/styles
* God’s protection over us as a team
* Grace to keep going!

If you'd like to know more about the team or want to get involved do fill out the form on this website or grab Kat or (myself at the PM meeting)

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

RFC Unplugged - my fave of the night

Abi Hope - Keep on Movin' from Gecko Collective on Vimeo.

As promised we now have plenty of photos and videos being uploaded from the fantastic RFC Unplugged. Check the videos out here (being edited very well by the talent Joe Smith). I have to say my favourite song of the night was Abi's very clever looped version of "Keep On Moving" by that group Five... enjoy the immense nostalgia factor when listening...

Monday, 21 February 2011

Co-Songwriting session...

Tomorrow I'll be engaging in a songwriting sess with, none other than, the fantastic Pete Coggan who is doing FP at the same training base as me. It's going to be great chatting through stuff, hearing each others ideas and getting a chance to just have a bit of a worship time as well. I love learning from others who are on the same journey of song craftsmanship as me and seeing creativity spark from going through stuff.

He's also in what seems to be a rather cool band called "Forerunner" (website ) who are soon releasing a hotly anticipated EP.

Hopefully those from Reading might see the fruit from our labours tomorrow at some point!

Sunday, 20 February 2011

RFC Unplugged

And so the first RFC Unplugged is finished, it was a fantastic night and I absolutely loved Abi and Bambury Tree's sets, was a real privilege to share a stage with such talented people! Was amazing to see so many people and hopefully we're making steps towards seeing community being built in the church. Looking forward to the photos and videos that I'm sure will follow. Big thanks to all the people that made it happen especially Scott, the Del Rios and to the many others who put in such hard work to make the magic happen! Now to bed....

Friday, 18 February 2011

Ten Lessons From Great Christians

Andrew Wilson has written a great little post on "Ten Lessons From Great Christians". I love little nuggets like these that help us see our awesome God in a clearer way...

Here's one to whet your appetite...

Lesson 4 John Calvin (16th Century)
God is sovereign over all, including our suffering. Calvin was not only a great Church Reformer, but he wrote the only systematic theology to come out of the Protestant Reformation:  The Institutes of the Christian Religion. The lesson of God’s sovereignty is far from being uniquely Calvinist, since it was emphasized by Augustine and Luther and many other great Christian theologians.  But for various reasons it is most commonly associated with Calvin, perhaps partly because he articulated this point as clearly and eloquently as anyone.  In any case, it is a teaching plainly taught in Scripture, most clearly in such passages as Psalm 139, James 1:2-4, and Romans 8:28.

Read the rest of them here

While you're there do check out the Theology Matters Website, it's a fantastic resource.
The website is -

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Wilberforce animation...

The I Heart Revolution - William Wilberforce from Glenn Stewart on Vimeo.

A cool little animation done by the guys at After doing my dissertation on him it's very refreshing to see this neat little clip...