The Week In-Between & the Atheist Church
The Week In-Between Christmas and the New Year has become a significant week in my adult-married life. During this week, I have always chosen to take holiday/vacation time. This is because it gives me an extended period over the Christmas holidays that I can spend with my wife and my children. Over the years, it has also become a time where we as a family enjoy spending it with friends, playing games, and watching college football bowl games.
This in-between week has gradually become a significant week for me, as I mentioned. It is when I get to enjoy extra time with family and friends, and also take time to reflect on the year and look ahead to the coming year. As I have been reflecting on all that the year has entailed, I’ve gained proper perspective for dreaming, planning, and strategising for the year to come.
In reflection, one thing I like to do is make a list of 7 Highlights of the Year. In doing so, I’m able to be thankful and give praise to my heavenly Father for all that He has done, both in my life and through my life, during the previous year. As I have thought about this today, I’m not going to list my 7 highlights here in this blog, but I am going to share a few in a photo montage.
During this reflection time and as I look forward to 2013, I find myself contemplating this fact that has come out of our most recent census here in the UK.
FACT: 1 in 3 people in the UK indicate they are atheists: The 2011 census for the UK indicates that now 1/3 of its residents, or 1 out of every 3 people in the UK, claim to be atheist. This coupled with the announcement of the first-ever Atheist Church has confirmed to me that NOW, more than ever, is the time for the Kingdom of God to be expanding in Scotland and the UK.
Stand Up Comedians Launch UK’s First Atheist Church
12th Year We are in our 12th year as missionaries here in Scotland, and I have never seen, nor experienced, a more desperate need for the Gospel to advance in Scotland and Europe than what we face today. This is why we are committed to sharing the Gospel here in Edinburgh and are working to help establish churches that reach the lost.
Additionally, I have been drawn to the words Paul wrote to Philemon.
Philemon was considered to be an ordinary pastor.
Philemon’s Love and Faith
Philemon 1:4-7 I thank my God always when I remember you in my prayers, because I hear of your love and of the faith that you have toward the Lord Jesus and for all the saints, and I pray that the sharing of your faith may become effective for the full knowledge of every good thing that is in us for the sake of Christ. For I have derived much joy and comfort from your love, my brother, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you.
I guess I can say as I look ahead to 2013 that the words of Paul to Philemon will be one of the prayers that I pray for myself.
My Prayer: “Dear Jesus, I pray that in each and every relationship of mine that the sharing of my faith will become EFFECTIVE for the full knowledge of every good thing that is in me for the sake of Christ. I also pray that the hearts of the saints and others will be refreshed through me.”
So during this WEEK IN-BETWEEN, I would encourage each of you to make your list of 7 Highlights of the Year from 2012. And my prayer for you is that you would be thankful for the past and be encouraged and inspired for the year to come.
From my family to you and yours, may we all grow in grace and mercy, be filled with peace and joy, and be extravagant in LOVE! Here’s to a very blessed 2013!