Tuesday, 17 May 2011


I am no longer going to be using this particular blog - please go to http://www.luke1910.wordpress.com/ for the new blog we are developing.

Things continue to change - as of the 1st May we officially became a Bishop's Mission Order (BMO) - with this change comes charity status & becoming a limited company so that we can manage our affairs with appropriate accountability.

Our Parish status will cease once the scheme for reorganisation has advanced through all the necessary consultations & legal processes.

We are currently looking at how we train, equip, release & support disciples in mission & especially ongoing development of MSCs. A new pattern of training & equipping is likely to be in place from September 2011.

We are becoming part of the Missional Communities Network UK - part of a movement of mission.

Lots happening.

As I said at my licensing service in October 2008 "change is here to stay". What an adventure!

Mark Carey

Saturday, 25 December 2010

Kairos Advent Devotional 2010 25th Dec

25 December 2010
Luke 2 v. 15 - 20

‘They hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen Him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child.’

We’re told that the shepherds, taking God at his word, hurried off to find the baby. What did they see when they got there?  An ordinary young couple with their newborn?  People of the same social class as themselves, in humble circumstances? There was no worldly pomp and circumstance surrounding this birth, no trappings of royalty, or airbrushed celebrity status.

Like Anna and Simeon in the temple courts1, and the wise men who would follow2, the shepherds saw past the evidence of their natural eyes. They looked beyond the physical reality, and saw the greater truth: a Saviour, the Messiah, the Lord. They saw things the way God saw them. They looked with the eyes of faith.

We need to become like the shepherds, people who in every situation, take God at His word and see things as He sees them. This is the nature of repentance – to change our way of thinking - to align ourselves with God. And this is what the great figures of faith in scripture were commended for: they chose to believe God, rather than the wisdom of the world, or the ‘facts’ of their circumstances3. It is not that we ignore the physical evidence, but that we do not accept it as the greater reality.

The shepherds’ faith-response to their encounter with Jesus, was firstly to praise the Lord, and then to tell their neighbours the good news.

God has come to us, transformed our ordinary lives, delivered us from every power of darkness, made us His children and released His power among us. Let’s respond with worship and celebration, and then tell our corner of the world that He wants do it for them too.

Help me to align myself with You in everything.
I worship and praise You for all you have given me.
Increase my understanding of the amazing salvation I have through Your Son,Jesus,
And give me opportunities this Christmas season to share this good news with the people around me.

1 Luke 2 v. 25-28
2 Matthew 2 v.1-2
3 Hebrews 11 v. 11,12

Friday, 24 December 2010

Enriched by God's Action

I came across this quote yesterday:
"The effect of evangelism is to enrich life by God's action, no less than the 'shalom' of the whole earth" - Bishop Patrick Yu.
It strikes me that the birth of Christ was an act of evangelism - God's action enriching life bringing 'shalom' to the whole of the earth - "and on earth peace to those on whom his favour rests" (Luke 2:14)
Our evangelism needs to have the same quality - based on an unshakable belief that God's action enriches life founded on our own experience of life enrichment in him.We are recipients of God's action - he has acted 'upon' us and our response at times such as this, Christmas, needs to be one of thanksgiving and appreciative worship.
Happy Christmas!

Kairos Advent Devotional 2010 24th Dec

24 December 2010
Luke 2 v. 8-13

‘And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night’

For many in the busy, noisy, Western world, silence is both unnecessary and unnerving. A recent television programme, ‘The Big Silence’, made a fascinating exploration of the thoughts and experiences of volunteers, entering a silent retreat for the first time. In the silence they came face to face with buried parts of themselves, receiving healing, and there were several profound encounters with God.

The Bible has many accounts of people who spent time alone with the Lord, often in the desert, away from human distractions. Invariably their lives were shaped by these intense encounters.

Consider the conditions in the inn: apparently there was no recognition that the greatest event the world had ever known was taking place, no quietness to register that God himself had come to them, no room for the Word of God. But, in contrast, out on the hillside, shepherds were keeping watch; by necessity, listening to the sounds of the night. And it was to them the Word of God came, ‘a Saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.’

‘Where shall the word be found,
Where will the word resound?
Not here, there is not enough silence,1’ wrote TS Elliot, challenging our Western busyness.

Let’s set aside some time this Christmas, even in the middle of the hectic activity, to come before God, not to pray, but to listen. Let Him come and speak His Word into our hearts, His Word that brings revelation, transformation and grace. And then let’s celebrate!

Father God,
I live by every Word that comes from Your mouth
I want to hear Your voice this Christmas.
Help me to set aside time to be still and listen. Amen

1 Ash Wednesday 1930

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Kairos Advent Devotional 2010 23rd Dec

23 December 2010
Luke 2 v. 1-7

‘She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger because there was no room for them in the inn.’

At Christmas we celebrate Emmanuel, God with us – the mighty God who came amongst us and is still with us today. The circumstances of Jesus’ birth cry out to us that God comes to the ordinary, and brings redemption. It is not a tale of man’s efforts to claw his way up to an inaccessible God, but rather the desire of Almighty God to come and shed His glory in the commonplace.

We can imagine the scene in that Bethlehem inn, crowded to the ginnels, the normal business swelled with pilgrims who had come to register in the town of their birth. We can see the bustling scene, hear the noise as people ate and drank, so busy there was not enough room for two late comers. I wonder who noticed, in the midst of the laughter and talk, a man and a young woman being led away to sleep with the animals. And if they did, did they slip out and follow, to see what would take place. Did anyone in the inn that night, hear the murmur of Heaven preparing to invade earth?

What about us today? We are challenged to take time in the midst of the festive rush to allow Him to come. To allow Emmanuel, who is the same yesterday, today and forever, to invade the commonplace of our lives, and transform them with His glory. There is no relationship, problem or circumstance too lowly, or too difficult, for His notice. Let’s make room for Him to have His way with us today.

Lord Jesus,
Thank You for wanting to shed Your glory in my ordinary life.
I invite You into   ……………………….…………………
and I look for Your transforming power.
Help me to share this good news with my friends and neighbours. Amen

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Kairos Advent Devotional 2010 22nd Dec

22 December 2010
John 1 v. 10-14

‘The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us.’

 The story of much religious activity is man’s attempt to climb up to God, and a lot of time, effort and resource is put into its pursuit. For some, it describes the character of their Christian walk, the effort they put in to try and connect with God: ‘If only I could read the Bible more, pray more, do more, be a better person – then I would find God.’ And so the way to heaven becomes littered with discouraged and disillusioned people.

The Christian Gospel actually offers something quite different. Jewish history tells of the passionate desire of the Lord to live among His people2, and how He came and filled first the Tabernacle, and then the Temple, with His glory. Then we read in this passage that God actually became incarnate and made his dwelling (literally ‘tabernacled’) among us. The Good News is that God has come down to us to meet us where we are.

There are several challenges in this for us.
The first is to take stock. How much do we try and reach God through our performance? All we need to do is acknowledge our own helplessness, and receive Him and believe in His name.

The second challenge is to trust in His word, and delight in His Presence, to believe He has come, and is living among us.

And the third is to see His Presence touch the people around us. One of the requirements of the Old Testament priesthood was that they carried the Ark of the Covenant -a representation of the Presence of God. We, as a royal priesthood1 likewise have the incredible privilege of carrying the Presence of God to our world.

God is the one who has come to us, to be with us where we are.  What if we prayed just one thing today: Welcome Lord - I welcome you to my day, fill my heart, my home, my workplace with your presence.  What if I welcomed him to my world today - simple words?  God wants us to live a life worthy of our calling. This is not the demand of Law but rather the offer of Grace – he wants to come himself and work it in us.  And in him is everything we need

Lord, there is nothing I can do to climb up into Your Presence.
Thank you, Jesus, that You have come, to meet me where I am.
Welcome Lord. Welcome to my day.
Fill my heart, my home, my workplace with your Presence.
I welcome You to my world today.

2Exodus 29 v.45, 46

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Kairos Advent Devotional 2010 21st Dec

21 December 2010
John 1 v. 1-9
‘The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome1 it.’

For our forebears, this, the dark time of the year, was an anxious period: available working hours were limited, and untold menaces, real and imagined, lurked in the darkness. Today we are grateful for modern electricity artificially lengthening the days, extending our productive time and dispelling some of the terrors of the night. And in this Christmas season, festive lights make the darkness a place of wonder.

Light has two great properties: it dispels darkness, and it enables us to see. Light always overcomes darkness just by being itself. And it is only the presence of light, entering the eye, which gives us sight.

Not only are the winter days dark, but the present times can seem dark too. The Bible describes man’s internal condition as full of darkness; the darkness of fear and sin, emotional, mental and physical pain, and the darkness of alienation from God; a darkness which manifests itself outwardly in our world in a multitude of ways.

Into this darkness Christ came; not as a dim, flickering light, but as a blaze of glory. The Gospels show that in every encounter with Him, the darkness that kept mankind in bondage was pushed back, and people were able to see clearly.

Today let’s meditate on the effects of light on darkness, and ask the Light of the World to come to us afresh. Let’s approach Him with a faith that expects to receive, a humility that acknowledges our need, and ask Him to shine his radiant light on our dark places, and dispel every one. Let’s ask Him to open our eyes to see clearly, and to use us to be people who shine His light in the dark places of the world around us.

Lord Jesus, Light of the world,
Come and shine Your light in every dark place in my life, bringing forgiveness, healing, deliverance and clear sight. 
Fill me with Your light and then use me to touch the people I meet.
Thank You that You are answering my prayer even as I speak.

1(NIV alternative translation)