Times Have Changed

Memorable Moments…A Look Back on 16 Years in Scotland 

I blame Facebook for continuing to take me down memory lane, but it has also been the inspiration for this blog post.

From Facebook, I get multiple “You have memories with… each week”.  

Photo credit: Jacob Chandler

These memories include a wide range of photos and statuses that I have shared over the years. Some are nostalgic, some are encouraging, and some are awesome reminders of how faithful and trustworthy God has been to me and my family with provision, healing, and miracles. During the two years where I had 6 surgeries that included testicular cancer surgery, 4 knee surgeries, and 2 knee replacements, God continued to remain faithful, as always!

A Look Back on 16 Years in Scotland

Here are a few of my favourite memories so far:

  1. Baptism and worship with 60 friends and family in our back garden, including the first Nepalese in our church to give his life to Jesus. And yes, we cooked tacos for everyone. 
  2. Hosting a team of 16 for 2 weeks from YWAM Maui School of Worship in our home.
  3. Friday Family Nights of up to 20-25 international students each week. Great conversations, pizzas and a movie. 
  4. Part of teams planting 3 new churches, and blessed to help lead and pastor each.
  5. Hosting and leading multicultural community (house) groups in our home weekly of 20-25 people from various nations around the world. 
  6. Organising a charity dinner in a local pub for an orphanage in Africa called Naomi’s Village, and cooking with Jacob a Tex Mex meal for 60 guests.
  7. Baptising some very special new followers of Jesus. 
  8. YWAM Shine outreaches in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
  9. Leading mission trips to Morocco and Poland, and participating in a Vineyard pastors/leaders mission trip to South Africa. 
  10.  Privileged to continue to be part of an awesome organisation, Bethany Christian Trust as a Deputy Manager for Bethany Homes participating in seeing lives transformed through Christian LOVE IN ACTION as I get to help provide homes for homeless and vulnerable people.

THE FUTURE

  1. Bethany Christian Trust. Confidentiality prohibits me from sharing any of the stories of the people I get to help, but if you knew, you could understand the massive JOY that fills my heart daily serving the homeless and vulnerable in Edinburgh, Scotland.
  2. Last May, Debbie had the opportunity to move on from working with Bethany Christian Trust after 11 1/2 years, and since then, she continues to love her ministry post with the Scottish Bible Society.
  3. Our family continues to grow with Joshua and Meghan, Jacob and Stephanie (and the boys). Debbie and I are thankful for our two additional daughters, and are looking forward to being MeMaw and PaPaw to three handsome boys.
  4. Hannah continues to study Film & Media and English Literature at University of Stirling and is in her 3rd year. I am proud to say that some of her films have been award winning.

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;”.  Isaiah 61:1 ESV

Love, Kent

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Something New

  

Something New
“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.”              Matthew 25:35-40 ESV

One cold and dreary November evening, Debbie brought to my attention the possibility of a new ministry opportunity that she had recently been privy too. During our missionary journey here in Edinburgh, she has worked as a tentmaker for the past 11 1/2 years with Bethany Christian Trust, a Charity working with homeless and vulnerable people whose aim is to transform lives by putting Christian love in action and faith into practice. 

This new opportunity was for me to take all that I have learned over the last year and a half working as a marketplace missionary and Property Manager, and apply to work in ministry with Bethany Christian Trust as a Housing Officer. After a successful interview, I was offered the position, and through much prayer, counsel, & God speaking to me through His Word, I accepted the position. 

As Christmas approaches, I’ve just completed my first week as Housing Officer working with Bethany. Over the past 14 years as missionaries here in Scotland, we’ve partnered with Bethany through the Winter Care Shelter, the Care Van, and various fundraising through the retail shops. After this first week, I can say I’m more and more excited to do my part within Bethany in reaching and helping over 7,000 homeless and vulnerable people across Scotland this coming year.

On the morning that I was to give Bethany my answer as to whether or not I was accepting this position, I’d been praying specifically that God would not only confirm through prayer and counsel, but that He’d also confirm through His Word.  

Before work, I had a doctors appointment, and while waiting, I decided, which I rarely do, to pick up a magazine off the table to read. The one I chose was a small magazine from the Episcopal Church located in our village. When I turned to the back page, the above scripture from Matthew 25:35-40 was the confirmation through Scripture that I knew was from God. 

As we take time to celebrate with family and friends the birth of our Saviour this season, let’s remember those who Jesus draws our attention to, perhaps the homeless, the vulnerable, and the hurting.

Thank you for your prayers, and your continued support in partnering with us to Love others into the Kingdom here in Scotland!

Love, Kent

IT’S IN THE EVERYDAY THAT GOD INVADES

imageIT’S IN THE EVERYDAY THAT GOD INVADES

A Facebook friend of mine proposed the following thought for the new year. Instead of making your typical resolutions, why not ask God for a 1 word theme for the year. His word was Engage.

In my efforts to try this for the first time, my 1 word theme became a 7 word phrase instead…IT’S IN THE EVERYDAY THAT GOD INVADES!

IT’S IN THE EVERYDAY THAT GOD INVADES. As I become more aware of what it means to be a “Marketplace Missionary” which in my case is God revealing more of Himself, and in teaching me new ways to live out His 2nd greatest commandment to “LOVE MY NEIGHBOURS AS MYSELF”, I become more aware that IT’S IN THE EVERYDAY THAT GOD INVADES.

One simple but beautiful example of this came a couple of days before Christmas. I had gone to a flat for a lease signing where a single Mom with 3 young daughters & a teenage daughter arrived to sign the lease. It was a very cold flat as no heating had been on while it sat empty, but as I would later discover, it offered the prospect of a warm home and a fresh start.

I didn’t realise the full depth of the situation, I only knew that they where having to escape a very bad situation, and move to settle into a new home over the Christmas holidays. The 3 young daughters were not only excited for Christmas, but also seemed very excited that this flat would become their new home. I can only imagine what they must have been escaping. I did my best to help make this difficult transition a little bit easier for them. I even put on a Disney movie for them to watch on my iPad while we signed all the papers.

At the end of our time, my heart was warmed, and my thoughts focused on how MUCH God loves & cares for us. The 3 young ones with big smiles on their faces, each took a turn in giving me a big hug and said, “thank you for our new home.”

Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. (Hebrews 13:2esv)

Love, Kent

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Come Follow Me, Celebrating 12 Years as Missionaries to Scotland

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Come Follow Me, Celebrating 12 Years as Missionaries to Scotland

And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” (Matthew 4:19 ESV)

On this day, the 28th of August in 2001, we arrived at Edinburgh Airport, jet lagged and bleary eyed, nervous yet excited to begin an adventure-packed journey with God.

We thought we were too old, at 40, for Youth With A Mission. But after 6 months training in Paisley, we were staffing a school with YWAM Scotland in Edinburgh.

To our surprise, there were other families, just as crazy as us, who joined us for the training at the YWAM base, Stanely House in Paisley, Scotland.

It was there at Stanely House, where we began our Family DTS (Discipleship Training School) with a total of 12 staff/student families with 35 children. That’s right, 35 children, and 20 of them ALL in the same house. An experience NONE OF US WILL EVER FORGET!

And today, we celebrate 12 years as being missionaries in this beautiful, historic capital city of Edinburgh, and in this rainy, but gorgeous, country that we have come to call home.

“To follow is to love.”
(Barclay Card Advert) http://youtu.be/zdg8uSQ4tvw
please watch this 1:31 minute video posted on You Tube.

When I recently saw this advert from Barclay Card, I thought the theme to be quite profound. The emotions, the drama, the reality of the situations that were portrayed, were all too real and engaging.

The tag line stated, “to follow is to love.” I thought to myself, there is something more to this, beyond the message that the company has presented or intended.

After seeing this advert several more times, I began to think about the words of Jesus in the Gospels, and compare those words to the Barclay ad tag line,”to follow is to love.”

COME FOLLOW ME
Jesus proclaims on numerous occasions “come follow me,” so I decided to do a search on my You Version app, and the following words of Jesus were the most commonly found and repeated in the Gospels.

And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” (Matthew 4:19 ESV)

And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” (Mark 8:34 ESV)

And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “You lack one thing: go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” ( Mark 10:21 ESV)

To FOLLOW is to LOVE. I believe there is a Kingdom principle found here.

The words of Jesus, “come follow me,” not only require us to deny ourselves, but to daily take up our cross (which is a whole other blog post on its own), and to follow Him.

I am daily trying to live this out as I seek to draw closer to God, to hear His voice, and to be obedient as I intentionally pursue to be His hands and His feet.

When I reflect back on the past 12 years as a missionary, I can honestly say there has been a lot of denying of self, and dying to self that has come along with the obedience to following Jesus.

STARTING YEAR 13 in Edinburgh, Scotland:
For the past 12 years, we have been focused on:

• reaching the lost with the Gospel
• training and discipling the next generation
• church planting

Our focus and passion remain the same today:

Our FOCUS: Reaching the lost with the Gospel here in Edinburgh Scotland and beyond its borders, and helping them become fully devoted followers of Christ.

Our PASSION: Making Disciples, Equipping Ministers, and Mobilizing Missionaries.

SEEKING PARTNERS
As we begin this 13th year as missionaries, we are looking for a few more people to partner with us, and to help us advance the Gospel in Edinburgh and Scotland.

If you would LOVE to Follow, and be a part, you can go to my Supporting Our Ministry page on this blog for details on how to do that, or email me directly at: lovefromkent@gmail.com

Love, Kent

A MidSummer Night in Edinburgh

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A MidSummer Night in Edinburgh In the beginning of July, on a typical chilly summer eve, the city centre streets of Edinburgh were busy with tourists and locals alike taking advantage of the northern night sky which is illuminated till close to midnight this time of year.

It was on this evening that I joined my friend James, and our Mosaic Edinburgh team, as we took our turn once again in serving the homeless with the Bethany Christian Trust Care Van. Bethany is the Scottish charity that Debbie, Hannah and Jacob all work for and that serves the homeless and vulnerable in Edinburgh and the surrounding areas. http://www.bethanychristiantrust.com

The Care Van is manned by a number of local churches year round, and travels around to several key points within city centre each night. At different stops the Care Van serves homemade soups, rolls, tea, and coffee, and when equipped with donations, provides socks, hats, gloves, coats, and blankets.

Before we headed out this July evening, I was praying with our team, and prayed specifically that God would give us divine appointments and that He would use us to be Jesus’ hands and feet. I don’t know why it surprises me when God shows up on the scene when we ask Him, but it still does sometimes.

At our first stop, we were busy serving when a very weathered, middle-aged man came up and asked if we had any socks. Unfortunately, we only had a few hand-knitted hats in colours that were more suited for women than for a man. We told him this is all that we had for the night, but he begged and pleaded with us to please give him some socks. He said his feet were in terrible pain and all torn up from being soaked from the rain and not having any dry socks or any socks at all for that matter.

We exclaimed once again that we were very sorry, but these hats were all that we had. And he said, “please just give me two of the hats and I’ll put them on my feet.” At that moment, both James and I looked at each other with a belief that we were having the same thought about giving him our own socks.

Perplexed but not confused, I was still contemplating the fact that I only had ankle socks on. At that precise moment, James had decided, and boldly stated to this very desperate man, “I’ll give you MY socks.” And to my excitement, the weathered looking man said, “Oh, would you please?”

As James proceeded to take off his socks, and give them to the man, he did it with such a love, with conviction and compassion that I have not witnessed in a long time. The man received the socks with tears in his eyes, and was ever so grateful for such a kind, loving act that was reminiscent of what Jesus would do.

In fact, as I’m writing this today, I’m reminded of what Jesus said in Matthew 5 just before he spoke about loving our enemies. Jesus said in verse 42 “Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.” Thanks be to God for this example and for answering our prayers for divine appointments. We are blessed and humbled to know You, God, and to be used by You.

Chandler Family Fund:
Trip to America
As most of you know, we are in the midst of raising funds to purchase 3 airline tickets (Kent, Debbie & Hannah) for a much needed trip back to see family, friends and partners (it’s been 4 years). We might need to raise a bit more, as Jacob is not getting as much work as he needs in order for him to pay for his entire airline ticket.

Travel Needs We are currently looking at travelling on September 11th or 12th, but are considering me going sooner, either into Dallas or Springfield, MO, and are needing to then meet up with Joshua who is in Arkansas near Debbie’s parents.

In addition to the airline tickets, we need the following:
*Car or van to borrow for 3-4weeks to travel between Texas, Arkansas & hopefully Colorado
*Lodging
*Funds for food, gas & maybe a few nights in a hotel

This Weeks Goal We have a goal this week to have enough for 2 of the tickets. As of now, we only need £259.00 to have enough for the first 2 tickets. Can you help? If so, you can donate directly on our PayPal at chandlerfamily5@gmail.com or donate on our Go Fund Me page at http://www.gofundme.com/34cqts

Thank you!
Love, Kent

A Note From a Small Island

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A Note from a Small Island

Recovery Update
Some of you have been asking for an update on my recovery. Firstly, let me say how much I have appreciated your prayers and encouragement during this long journey. Since my last total knee replacement surgery, I have been diligent in pushing through the physio and rehab and God continues to work a miracle in expediting my process. I’ve done everything asked of me at a much quicker pace than previous. On the challenging side of things, I continue to struggle with pain and consequently some not so pleasant side effects of the pain medication. I’m working with my GP on slowly decreasing what I’m taking and the dosages.

Confirmation Written in the Sky?

On a recent sunny afternoon, I decided to take a break outside, and spend some time praying, seeking, waiting & listening to God. After all, my theme during this rehabilitation time was to seek God for Himself & for what’s next. With so many different ways to schedule my time, I felt like God wanted me to press in to Him in order that I might know what I am “to set my hands to do.”

With my face set gazing toward the rare, warm Scottish afternoon sun, at the very moment I opened my eyes, I saw two jets passing in the sky which were forming a perfect “X” pattern. My eyes didn’t just see an X in the sky but God spoke to me! He showed me that it was a replica of a Scottish flag.

Finished here in Scotland?… I say not!

There is much work to be done and so we will continue to:
MAKE DISCIPLES. EQUIP MINISTERS. MOBILIZE MISSIONARIES.

Psalm 138:8 ESV
“The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me; your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever. Do not forsake the work of your hands.”

ANNOUNCEMENT
We are really excited to have Meghan Johnson (Joshua’s pre-fiancé) to come join us as an intern with Mosaic Edinburgh. She will be living with our family and working with us for at least the next 2 years. This is a great opportunity for her to learn as well as carry on with some of her and Joshua’s previous ministry they were doing when she was here for 6 months before.

WE NEED YOUR HELP
Can I be honest with you? We really need a break from here! We need to see family! It has been 4 years since we have seen family (3 since Joshua & I have seen my family). Still, 3 years is a long time. And, 4 years since we have had a break is a very long time!

Again, honestly, our income currently from jobs and partners who support our ministry work does not allow us to save for airfare and the expenses needed to travel back to America to see family, friends & partners.

In faith, we are beginning to plan for this trip! We would like to travel in August-September unless we have the funds or tickets in place beforehand.

Our plan would be to fly from Edinburgh to Dallas-Fort Worth Texas.

Would you please consider helping us get home to see family, friends & partners and to have a much needed break?

We need to get there & we will need a car for transportation.

WAYS TO DONATE
1. If you have a PayPal account, you can donate directly & securely at chandlerfamily5@gmail.com
2. You can donate on our GoFundMe page, securely http://www.gofundme.com/34cqts
3. You can donate by providing air miles.

Can you help with a car for our transport needs?

Thank you so much for your love, support and encouragement.

Love, Kent

I BELIEVE in MIRACLES

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RECOVERY UPDATE: Something Miraculous Happened Today
see photo proof @ end of blog post

I don’t know why but I’m continually amazed when I see God move in miraculous ways, especially in my own life. But I am here to testify today of answered prayers. I want to thank all of you who have been on this journey with me. Since August 2010, I have had 5 surgeries that included 4 knee surgeries ( 2 arthoscopic and 2 total knee replacements) and a testicular cancer surgery. Your prayers have given me hope, patience and strength to endure as I’ve witnessed God’s hand and healing on my life. So, from the bottom of my heart, I thank you again!

It’s been 2 1/2 weeks since my 2nd knee replacement. Already I’ve seen a big difference compared to the last one (on the other knee). I can’t say that it has been any less painful but I am taking less pain medication, so that means something right?. There is less swelling, and I seem to be getting around better than last time already. I can see that I’ve gotten more flexibility and bend in my knee, this even before my first outpatient physio begins on Friday, 1st February.

MIRACULOUS: The last two days, I have been able to increase my exercises which has really encouraged me. But, something miraculous happened to me this afternoon. During my exercises today, I decided to listen & watch a worship service on iBethel.tv, led by Jeremy Riddle (who happens to be one of my favourite worship leaders) for what I thought was going to be a distraction for me.

Little did I know that God had other plans.

After I had warmed up and felt like I had done really well with my flexibility, I decided to try once again to be able to lift my leg. This is a feat that took me 5 weeks to accomplish with my last total knee replacement, I’m not joking, 5 weeks! So, with a tremendous amount of strain and effort, I tried and tried to lift my foot/leg off the bed. At first, I had no luck, I just couldn’t do it. Then, with a huge amount of effort, I managed to get it up, a tiny little bit. Exhausted but excited, I called Debbie to come watch.

Again with great concentration, effort, strain and grunting I was able to lift it ever so slightly off the bed. HUGE SUCESS! But, with that success, I felt like I strained a muscle or something. So I must have done it wrong somehow.

BACK TO THE MIRACULOUS: As I said previously, I believe God had other plans for me instead of just listening and watching this worship time while I was exercising. At the end of the worship, the Holy Spirit was moving and speaking. I sensed that the Holy Spirit was not only moving there in Redding CA, but believe it or not, moving in my bedroom too. Through prayer and witnessing the move of the Holy Spirit they asked people to lay hands on someone around them to pray for healing or impartation or just encouragement.

ASK GOD TO SUPERNATURALLY HELP ME TO RECOVER: So, with no one around me, I decided to lay hands on myself, and with faith, I asked God to supernaturally help me to recover from this 2nd total knee replacement.

After praying for someone’s healing, I always, if appropriate, ask them to try to do something that they weren’t able to do before. For me, I decided to try and lift my foot and leg up from the bed, but this time more than just a bit.

TO MY AMAZEMENT, I not only was able to lift it up off the bed, I was able to lift it to where my leg was straight up and down pointing to the ceiling. I suddenly realised it took very little effort to do it so I decided to try it again. Before I did, I said both to myself and to God, that if I can do it again with little effort then I can testify of God’s amazing supernatural healing in helping me to recover. The second time was a complete success too!

Now came the time to testify to Debbie and Jacob, so I asked them to come up to my room and to be my witness. To their amazement, and mine too, BOOM! I did it again!. This is awesome! And again, I did it for Hannah when she got home, only this time I was smart enough to have her take a photo for proof.

At the end of all the excitement, I realise that I still have a long road ahead of physio and rehab, but today I can testify of God’s grace, love, and mercy on my life as He supernaturally is helping me to recover.

Can we just all pray, More Lord Please! And my prayer is for each of you to experience MORE of His love, grace, and mercy in your life too.

Love, Kent
lovefromkent@gmail.com

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The Week In-Between & the Atheist Church

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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
http://www.islingtongazette.co.uk/news/stand_up_comedians_launch_uk_s_first_atheist_church_in_islington_1_1747944

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!

Love, Kent

Tacos for 50

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Tacos for 50
Today was a very special day for us as we celebrated beginning our 12th year as missionaries/church planters in Scotland.

It was special because we were privileged to serve 49 friends tacos made with love in our home.

This was a Kingdom event, because at the very heart of our Taco Sunday was a desire to participate in bringing about UNITY within the Body of Christ, in particular both churches that we have been working with, Centrepoint Church & Mosaic Edinburgh. Thanks to Nathan (Centrepoint) & James (Mosaic) for helping make today a tremendous success! God blesses unity.

We came together to honour God, to demonstrate a united stance to see God’s Kingdom expanded in Edinburgh & to pray for both churches.

Ps.133:1- How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!

This coming Sunday, 23 September, Centrepoint Church Edinburgh will pray for us, and send us as we transition to serve with Mosaic.

If you missed my SHOCKING FACTS blog earlier in the week, then I would encourage you to continue reading. If you have already read it, then I want to thank you for taking the time to do so.

SHOCKING FACTS:
As we begin our 12th year here in Edinburgh, Scotland as missionaries/church planters, we would like to give God glory and praise for allowing us to preach the Gospel as we worked with YWAM and helped establish two separate churches. We have been privileged to help plant the Almond Vineyard church for 6 1/2 years, and the Every Nation/Centrepoint Church for the last 4 1/2 years.

As we transition into the next part of our journey here in Edinburgh as missionaries/church planters, we would LOVE for you to take the time (because it is very important to us) to read this letter explaining some details about our new role as we transition to help another church plant, Mosaic Edinburgh.

KEEP these SHOCKING facts in mind as you continue reading:

FACT: It would take 160 new churches being planted, that each grew to 500 people, in order for 20% of the UN-CHURCHED in Edinburgh to be reached!

You might want to read that again to take it all in.

LETTER: James Petticrew, Catalyst for Mosaic Edinburgh, whom we will be working with has written this letter on our behalf. We would really appreciate it if you would take a few minutes to read it.

Love, Kent

Mosaic Edinburgh

A Movement of Faith, Love & Hope

On Tuesday 3 February 1931, a devastating earthquake hit the area of Hawkes Bay on the South Island of New Zealand. Tragically that earthquake cost 256 people their lives and it also changed the lives of everyone who lived in the area. The tremendous upheaval in the ground made some bits of land disappear, some new pieces of land appeared where there had been a lagoon and new hills literally overnight came into being where the ground had been flat before. In an instant all the maps for the area had been rendered useless and the residents were left feeling consumed and bewildered in this new landscape. The people of Hawkes Bay went from living somewhere they were familiar with and which felt like home to living in an area that had changed almost beyond recognition. All of a sudden they had to learn new ways of navigating in what had been once a familiar and friendly landscape.

When I first heard that story it reminded me in so many ways of my experience as a church leader in Europe over the last 20 years. For much of the last 1000 years Europe felt like “home” for the church, it was familiar and friendly territory for Christianity. However more recently it increasingly feels like the church here is experiencing the same kind of upheaval the people of Hawkes Bay did back in 1931. That is because Europe over the last 30 to 40 years has been hit, not by a physical earthquake, but a by a cultural one and it feels like everything has changed. The old familiar landmarks in our Culture have gone, our culture which used to hold most Christian values now seems to oppose those self same values. The old ways of navigating in our culture, the old ways of doing and being church, just don’t get us where we want to go any more. Christianity has been pushed from its central position in European culture to the edges. No wonder the great missionary thinker Lesslie Newbigin said that Europe was the most difficult mission field the church had ever faced because it was the only mission field created by people thinking they had rejected Christianity. Following the earthquake in Hawkes Bay the church buildings had to be rebuilt and now in Europe there is a desperate need for new churches to built, not new physical buildings, but new expressions of God’s People committed to God’s mission in this new culture.

Vision of Mosaic Edinburgh: The vision of Mosaic Edinburgh is to be just such a fresh expression of church. We are committed to learning how to be God’s people, to learning how to make the Kingdom of God tangible, in this new culture we face here in Edinburgh with all of its challenges and opportunities. We are thinking and experimenting with new maps to help us navigate this unfamiliar cultural landscape. We are trying to rethink what the essence of being church is and how we can authentically express it here in our beautiful, historic city. We have gathered a core group of people from around Scotland and across the globe to launch what we are praying will be a significant new missional movement in Scotland’s capital. A huge amount of prayer over the last few years has gone into gathering this core group, specifically praying that God would lead people with a passion for and experience of mission in this challenging new environment for the church. It has been incredible to see how God has answered that prayer and to me, as one of the leaders of Mosaic, without doubt one of the clearest and most significant answers to that prayer we have seen has been Kent and Debbie Chandler’s step of faith in deciding to become part of the leadership of Mosaic Edinburgh and join us in this bold new God inspired experiment in mission. If you know Kent and Debbie well that won’t come as a surprise to you.

THE CHANDLERS: The Chandlers came to Scotland over 11 years ago with YWAM with a passion for being part of what God was doing in Europe particularly to see new churches planted in a continent that has seen so many die. Since then they have had considerable experience of mission in Edinburgh and have been part of teams which have helped establish two separate congregations in the city. I cannot think of anyone else I know of who has that kind of track record and experience of church planting in Edinburgh. They see their role in Mosaic as being the next step in following God’s missionary calling for their life. Kent will be becoming part of the core leadership group of Mosaic, serving as a pastor with several key roles and he and Debbie together will be planting a new missional community focused on reaching the unchurched which they will lead. I cannot tell you how excited I am to have Kent and Debbie Chandler joining the team at Mosaic. I believe that our mission here in historic and scenic Edinburgh is incredibly strategic. In just two years Scotland will vote on becoming fully independent and whatever the outcome of the vote the culture of Scotland will continue to change. Edinburgh may be Scotland’s capital but its becoming increasingly multicultural with some of the brightest best from around the world coming to study at its world class universities or work in the finance industry. We believe that God has called us to launch Mosaic Edinburgh to join Him in rising to these to strategic opportunities for the Gospel here. I know that Kent and Debbie with their wealth of church planting experience and very clear giftings will be key people in helping us become the missional church God is calling us to be.

Commend Kent & Debbie: For all those reasons I want to commend Kent and Debbie to you and ask specifically if you could support and partner with them in this new chapter in their calling as missionaries to the unchurched of Europe in several ways? Would you firstly, and perhaps most importantly, support them in prayer? Nothing of any spiritual significance will happen in this city or continent I believe without the sustained focused prayer by God’s people and of course that includes the Chandlers work here. I know they are acutely aware of their need for God’s power to be unleashed in what they plan to being doing and that won’t happen without prayer. To be frank they also need financial support as Edinburgh is an expensive city in which to live, the second most expensive in the whole of the UK. I know personally that its never easy to ask for financial support so I am going to do it for them. Would you consider making for the for the first time, or continuing to make, contributions to their ongoing support fund. I am ask you to support them financially not so much just to fund a great family to serve here in Scotland but so you too can partner with God in seeing an impact being made through His Kingdom in this strategic city? I know this is a difficult financial climate for many of us but I also know that many of us fritter money on things of little importance which could support work in the Kingdom of God which is of course of ultimate importance. So if you can commit to support them I would ask you to prayerfully consider doing so. If you have any questions about Mosaic, our vision or mission please don’t hesitate to contact me at jamespetticrew@rocketmail.com

Yours in Christ,

James Petticrew, Catalyst Mosaic Edinburgh

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Shocking Facts!

We have had a friend here from Atlanta, (Leigh Craven) visiting us over the last 10 days, and have really enjoyed spending time with her as we have shown her around our beautiful, historical city, Edinburgh. You might have even seen pictures I posted on Facebook from our day trip last week to Holy Island of Lindisfarne.

Holy Island– The significance of Holy Island is that St. Aidan, who chose Lindisfarne as the site for his church & monastery brought the Gospels to this area, called Northumbria in 635. And missionaries, trained by Aidan, were among the first to travel Britain and journey as far as into the Netherlands preaching and bringing the Gospels.

It was great for us to share our experience of  Holy Island & to learn how the Gospels were spread throughout this nation. However, as we travelled around our city of Edinburgh, it was very tragic for her to see the demise of the historical, traditional churches & their buildings.

As we find ourselves in a post-Christian culture and society, many of these once great churches are no longer churches but have been turned into other things like indoor rock climbing arenas and, sadly, a nightclub called SIN!

SHOCKING FACTS:
As we begin our 12th year here in Edinburgh, Scotland as missionaries/church planters, we would like to give God glory and praise for allowing us to preach the Gospel as we worked with YWAM and helped establish two separate churches. We have been privileged to help plant the Almond Vineyard church for 6 1/2 years, and the Every Nation/Centrepoint Church for the last 4 1/2 years.

As we transition into the next part of our journey here in Edinburgh as missionaries/church planters, we would LOVE for you to take the time (because it is very important to us) to read this letter explaining some details about our new role as we transition to help another church plant, Mosaic Edinburgh.

KEEP these SHOCKING facts in mind as you continue reading:

FACT: It would take 160 new churches being planted, that each grew to 500 people, in order for 20% of the UN-CHURCHED in Edinburgh to be reached!

You might want to read that again to take it all in.

LETTER:  James Petticrew, Catalyst for Mosaic Edinburgh, whom we will be working with has written this letter on our behalf.  We would really appreciate it if you would take a few minutes to read it.

Love, Kent

Mosaic Edinburgh

A Movement of Faith, Love & Hope

On Tuesday 3 February 1931, a devastating earthquake hit the area of Hawkes Bay on the South Island of New Zealand. Tragically that earthquake cost 256 people their lives and it also changed the lives of everyone who lived in the area. The tremendous upheaval in the ground made some bits of land disappear, some new pieces of land appeared where there had been a lagoon and new hills literally overnight came into being where the ground had been flat before. In an instant all the maps for the area had been rendered useless and the residents were left feeling consumed and bewildered in this new landscape. The people of Hawkes Bay went from living somewhere they were familiar with and which felt like home to living in an area that had changed almost beyond recognition. All of a sudden they had to learn new ways of navigating in what had been once a familiar and friendly landscape.

When I first heard that story it reminded me in so many ways of my experience as a church leader in Europe over the last 20 years. For much of the last 1000 years Europe felt like “home” for the church, it was familiar and friendly territory for Christianity. However more recently it increasingly feels like the church here is experiencing the same kind of upheaval the people of Hawkes Bay did back in 1931. That is because Europe over the last 30 to 40 years has been hit, not by a physical earthquake, but a by a cultural one and it feels like everything has changed. The old familiar landmarks in our Culture have gone, our culture which used to hold most Christian values now seems to oppose those self same values. The old ways of navigating in our culture, the old ways of doing and being church, just don’t get us where we want to go any more. Christianity has been pushed from its central position in European culture to the edges. No wonder the great missionary thinker Lesslie Newbigin said that Europe was the most difficult mission field the church had ever faced because it was the only mission field created by people thinking they had rejected Christianity. Following the earthquake in Hawkes Bay the church buildings had to be rebuilt and now in Europe there is a desperate need for new churches to built, not new physical buildings, but new expressions of God’s People committed to God’s mission in this new culture.

Vision of Mosaic Edinburgh:  The vision of Mosaic Edinburgh is to be just such a fresh expression of church. We are committed to learning how to be God’s people, to learning how to make the Kingdom of God tangible, in this new culture we face here in Edinburgh with all of its challenges and opportunities. We are thinking and experimenting with new maps to help us navigate this unfamiliar cultural landscape. We are trying to rethink what the essence of being church is and how we can authentically express it here in our beautiful, historic city. We have gathered a core group of people from around Scotland and across the globe to launch what we are praying will be a significant new missional movement in Scotland’s capital. A huge amount of prayer over the last few years has gone into gathering this core group, specifically praying that God would lead people with a passion for and experience of mission in this challenging new environment for the church. It has been incredible to see how God has answered that prayer and to me, as one of the leaders of Mosaic, without doubt one of the clearest and most significant answers to that prayer we have seen has been Kent and Debbie Chandler’s step of faith in deciding to become part of the leadership of Mosaic Edinburgh and join us in this bold new God inspired experiment in mission. If you know Kent and Debbie well that won’t come as a surprise to you.

THE CHANDLERS:  The Chandlers came to Scotland over 11 years ago with YWAM with a passion for being part of what God was doing in Europe particularly to see new churches planted in a continent that has seen so many die. Since then they have had considerable experience of mission in Edinburgh and have been part of teams which have helped establish two separate congregations in the city. I cannot think of anyone else I know of who has that kind of track record and experience of church planting in Edinburgh. They see their role in Mosaic as being the next step in following God’s missionary calling for their life. Kent will be becoming part of the core leadership group of Mosaic, serving as a pastor with several key roles and he and Debbie together will be planting a new missional community focused on reaching the unchurched which they will lead. I cannot tell you how excited I am to have Kent and Debbie Chandler joining the team at Mosaic. I believe that our mission here in historic and scenic Edinburgh is incredibly strategic. In just two years Scotland will vote on becoming fully independent and whatever the outcome of the vote the culture of Scotland will continue to change. Edinburgh may be Scotland’s capital but its becoming increasingly multicultural with some of the brightest best from around the world coming to study at its world class universities or work in the finance industry. We believe that God has called us to launch Mosaic Edinburgh to join Him in rising to these to strategic opportunities for the Gospel here. I know that Kent and Debbie with their wealth of church planting experience and very clear giftings will be key people in helping us become the missional church God is calling us to be.

Commend Kent & Debbie:  For all those reasons I want to commend Kent and Debbie to you and ask specifically if you could support and partner with them in this new chapter in their calling as missionaries to the unchurched of Europe in several ways? Would you firstly, and perhaps most importantly, support them in prayer? Nothing of any spiritual significance will happen in this city or continent I believe without the sustained focused prayer by God’s people and of course that includes the Chandlers work here. I know they are acutely aware of their need for God’s power to be unleashed in what they plan to being doing and that won’t happen without prayer. To be frank they also need financial support as Edinburgh is an expensive city in which to live, the second most expensive in the whole of the UK. I know personally that its never easy to ask for financial support so I am going to do it for them. Would you consider making for the for the first time, or continuing to make, contributions to their ongoing support fund. I am ask you to support them financially not so much just to fund a great family to serve here in Scotland but so you too can partner with God in seeing an impact being made through His Kingdom in this strategic city? I know this is a difficult financial climate for many of us but I also know that many of us fritter money on things of little importance which could support work in the Kingdom of God which is of course of ultimate importance. So if you can commit to support them I would ask you to prayerfully consider doing so. If you have any questions about Mosaic, our vision or mission please don’t hesitate to contact me at jamespetticrew@rocketmail.com

Yours in Christ,

James Petticrew, Catalyst Mosaic Edinburgh