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Publications

8 Sermons on Prayer

Rev. Con June 22, 2013 Publications No comments
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Introduction

I find it hard to believe that I preached my first formal sermon on the 23rd January 1971. As a young and inexperienced Christian I had much to learn. It is now the year 2011 and I feel the same. A lot has happened in my life since that Sunday night, many sermons have been prepared and preached but one thing remains constant: that is the need to “walk humbly with my God.”

I believe Prayer is an important key to the Christian life. What is prayer?

It is not until we truly open ourselves to the Almighty and make ours the blessings that we have in the Lord Jesus, that we can experience the power of prayer in our lives.

I do not claim to be expert or proficient in this, in fact I would rather think of myself as a simple country parson, a fellow traveller in the journey of life.

The hymn, ‘I Surrender All’, describes it beautifully. The truth of the matter is that we find it hard to surrender all to Him.
Within the pages of this booklet are seven chapters, each on a particular aspect of prayer. Prayer is the most powerful activity in which a human being can engaged in. It has great possibilities, its field is limitless. It is easy, yet it is hard. It is simple yet it is complex.

There have been many books written on prayer, many sermons preached on it.

These chapters are not exhaustive and this information is not new, it has been gleaned from many sources. You might even find these chapters simplistic.

My prayer is that this information may be of use as stepping stones to a deeper walk with God.

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The Small Church

Rev. Con June 4, 2013 Publications No comments
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Church growth

Church growth – what is it? This has been the hot topic of many discussions and the title has caused some to break out in a sweat.

The fear of criticism and the ridicule of failure are two reactions to this subject. I have read numerous church growth books and have even been tempted to write one myself!

In these books there is good material. Each, however, belongs to a particular time and place. It may be the story of how a church came into being; or the story of a church in tatters that saw the light and eventually grew.

There are other books – the “how to” books. They tell us what we are supposed to do. These are full of instruction and guidance from wise and experienced practitioners who have “been there and done that.” They are success stories that are designed to enthuse and excite the new or tired practitioner.

Many look at growth as a natural part of what it is to be a church, saying that the New Testament churches grew and so should the church of today.

Some are helpful and invaluable to today’s church leaders, but others are depressing and frustrating, particularly if you have been in the same church for many years and seem to be making very little headway.

There are those books that challenge the reader to move ahead to change his perspective on the church. Some claim to be totally biblical in their approach, while others just claim to be helpful. There is the school of thought that has what I call a “theology of experience.” “If it works, it must be good and it must be of God.”

One thing that I have observed is that each of these books emphasises church growth – small must lead to big. We are instructed with great conviction that big is good and growth is what God wants.

What is the small church?

Is the small church the disobedient brother who just can’t get his act together? We are challenged to question our very existence; if we are not growing then we are doing something wrong? Having been in the ministry for over thirty years and having pastured a number of small churches, I find this assumption very difficult to accept. In fact insulting! I have been in churches that have grown significantly. I have also experienced the frustration of seeing other churches grow while we remained small.

All these texts can be helpful in our search for the Lord’s will in our own situations. The difficulty is that sometimes we may not be prepared or willing to facilitate change. We may not be open to the leading of the Holy Spirit.

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Christianity – A Real Change

Rev. Con January 6, 2013 Publications No comments
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Introduction

So far we have spent some time looking at the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God and the local church are intertwined. They cannot be separated. This year I have started almost every sermon with the following statements:-

“I strongly believe that God calls people to Himself, He also calls people into the church, not just the universal church but to congregations.”

For congregations are where:

  • we are called to serve and sacrifice. It is here that we are lights in the world and salt on the earth!
  • we are part of a family and as such learn to love and exercise the fruit and the gifts of the spirit.

It should be the place where we are taught and teach the Word of God.

The Church is God’s Kingdom on earth.

It is set up in the mind, and in the heart of man, that would continue to an eternity.

The Kingdom has a “present reality and future manifestation.”

  • It begins with a spiritual birth, then it works its way throughout our lives.
  • It comes with a kit bag, all that we require to live life- we call it the Fruit of the Spirit and the Gifts of the Spirit.
  • It comes with an earthly family- the Church- the place where we learn and grow.
  • It begins in the heart of God and works through you!
  • It comes with a relationship.

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