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Unbelief To Faith

Phil Hardy (Sun, 15 Feb 2015)

Phil continued our series working through the book Sustainable Power, looking at how we move from unbelief to faith.

Our Faith is not to be based upon our own past experiences but fully in the promises and the provision that God has made for us by the death and resurrection of Jesus and the giving of the Holy Spirit as our guide into all truth and the source of power to do the works that Jesus did.

To view Phil's notes, in PDF format, click here.

Questions

1) Can you think of time when you had faith for something and God did it?

2) Can you think of a time when you struggled with Faith? What area was that in i.e. healing, family situation, finance, job, etc. How did you get through that time, or are you still going through it and need to come to God again in a fresh way?

3) Are there any areas where you know today you struggle and doubt? (using the list of symptoms of unbelief may help in this)

4) Hebrews Chapter 11 is full of people commended for their faith, if Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of the unseen things, what is it you are hoping for, how can you grow in faith to see them become reality.

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Restoration

Neal Garratt (Sun, 08 Feb 2015)

Neal preached on Restoration at our Half-Term All Age meeting.

Please be aware that this audio file stops part-way through Neal's preach.

During the meeting, Neal used some 'hair restorer' he had 'found' in his garage to demonstrate his point.
[Caution: Please do not try this at home!]

Further notes and questions may follow in due course.

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Fear

Neal Garratt (Sun, 01 Feb 2015)

Neal spoke on spiritual fear and freedom.

Fear stops us doing what we want to do because of the consequences of our action. We have heard of the expression “Frozen with fear” and today we looked at how fear affects us in our walk with God.

Questions:

1. Research has found that the major barrier to mission is the paralysing fear of rejection. The name of the game is safety and not the risk of faith. If we keep waiting for the right moment, nothing can go wrong because the right moment never actually comes. How do you feel about this statement, have you experienced this yourself and how do we move from “safety” to “faith”?

2. R.T Kendall says “ Better for us to have a healthy fear of God than an unhealthy fear of man” - Proverbs 29 vs 25 says “ The fear of man is a trap but whoever puts his trust in the Lord will be safe”.

Why do we have a fear of man and worry so much about what other people think of us? Does this hold us back in our walk with God?

3. 1 John 4 vs 17-21 says “ there is no fear in Love, but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment – the one who fears is not perfected in love” We spent some time today looking at the fathers heart towards us to understand better this “perfect love” – This is key to trusting God and stepping out in faith – Does this help us in our understanding?

4. Do you know what your own individual fears are? I think in our hearts we all know our areas of weakness and fear and so let`s bring them to God and ask him to help us so that we may not be walking “in a spirit of fear – but of power and love and self control” as Paul encourages us to. Take one fear that you have –pray about it and then step out and see what God will do – The results will be amazing!

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Self-reliance to Sonship

Phil Hardy (Sun, 25 Jan 2015)

Phil spoke on our transformation from self-reliance to Sonship.

To view a copy of these notes in PDF format, click here.

Introduction

• New Series
• Pickup on some things from last year
o Presence of God
o Taking Hold of that for which God took hold of us
• Moving forward as a Church
• Sustainable Power – Some groups have or are going through this book

JOHN 15 VERSES 1-5

1. The Sin of Self Reliance

• All prone to be self-sufficient, maybe a western culture thing
• Feel we should be able to do it all of ourselves
• We don’t need others and we certainly don’t need God
• We have ways of dealing with things
• All is well, why would I need anyone or any thing
• Somehow to admit we can’t do it is failure on our part
• To recognise we are not sufficient is weakness
• Actually we are denying ourselves of Gods provision and care which he provides which is better than we could for ourselves.
• It becomes a matter of our Pride

Jesus Said these words

“Apart from me you can do nothing”

Its perhaps hard for us to accept this as being true for us, because we think we should be able to and we are encouraged to live independent lives.

We live a culture where we are expected to just get on with it.

When we come to the realisation that without God we are sunk that’s our starting place and Gods opportunity to do something extraordinary!

My story – In my weakness God made strong

2. Functional Orphans

The route of self-reliance is in having an orphan heart, a heart that sees itself alone in the world

It’s not possible to sustain the power of God whilst living as functional orphans
• The Orphan heart has not truly connected to the source of life and power
• The Orphan heart is cut off from the Fathers love which make a safe context for power

If we have not dealt with the issue that the source of Provision and life is the Father rather than us it will be very easy to lose our way and even be crushed both individually and corporately.

Our first response reveals where we are looking to meet the need, if its not going to the father then are we reliant on ourselves and our ability to resolve things?

Sustainable power P 37 George Muller

“Self-reliance and the orphan spirit are massive obstacles obstructing the river-flow of the Holy Spirit, because they push us back into our limited resources instead of God’s unlimited supply.

3. The orphan heart

How do we recognise the Orphan heart?
What are the symptoms?

The only one who example of being fully secure in the Fathers love and unlimited provision is Jesus so he’s the measure we are to line up with

• Jesus knew God as a generous father, Pharisees saw God as a hard master
• Jesus depended on his father, the Pharisees lived independently of God
• Jesus lived in the security of his Fathers favour and love, the Pharisees lived in insecurity
• Jesus did not look for approval from men, Pharisees always looked for approval from men rather than God.
• Jesus self-image was based on what his father said about him, the Pharisees compared their selves with other and would pray thank you I am not like other men
• Jesus gave self-giving love to others, the Pharisees were Jealous of others
• Jesus offered Mercy, the Pharisees offered Judgement
• Jesus was warm and affectionate in his love, the Pharisees were cold and hard

4. Sonship

The source of our orphan thinking is very often based on our experience of our relationship with our own father. Good or bad it will affect our view of God and our rightful place as a child of God.

Repentance is the only way but we can only truly repent as God reveals to us our true selves.

I’m not sure we fully grasp this principle, when we first come to putting our faith in Jesus its ok we know there is this initial turning away from the things we once did, accepting Jesus as our Lord and saviour. As we go on with God and he reveals things that are much deeper and not just about our behaviour but our attitudes and our way of thinking it seem to be much harder to change. Hence we need God.

• Acknowledge our own orphan hearts
• Looking at the life of Jesus and the lives of the Pharisees in light of our own attitudes and behaviour

This will help us to take steps away from living like orphans and into our destiny as sons of the father

It’s a journey that we can all start today to allow God to Change us that we might enter into and know what it is to be in the vine connected to all the resource our Father in heaven has for us.

Sustainable Power P44 para 2

5. Conclusion

• Sustainable Power P45
• Shattered Dreams, when some gets up and talks about dreams and encourages us to dream again, I just cant seem to do it.
• Many dreams but the overriding one is to see God move in signs, wonders and miracles, there is only one way this will ever happen and its by God himself

6. Ministry

• Repentance of self reliance.
• Dealing with a Orphan Heart, some will need some healing and deliverance over past experiences. You know if some of those symptoms are in your life.
• Maybe like me you can’t dream, you can’t see the future God has for you

Questions for groups

1. Why is sharing our lives openly and transparently important to church life and growth

2. How if at all, Has talking and the pride of self reliance help you in your relationship with the father

3. What areas are you aware of that you have been reliant on yourself or others instead of the father

4. Do you have an orphan heart? What do you need to do to for change to take place, so that you can see and enjoy the goodness of the father?

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Our Relationship With God

Dave Watmore (Sun, 18 Jan 2015)

Until he was interrupted by a fire alarm(!), Dave Watmore spoke about our relationship with God.

Please note that the audio is even shorter than Dave's talk was.

>> 1] Genesis 1 v 26 says that God made us in his image because he is love. What do people understand by that? You are unique and precious in his sight see also Psalm 139 v 1 to 18 to see how well God knows us and knows all about us and yet still loves us.

>> 2] Ask people to explain why they trusted Jesus for the first time. Not how but why. I trusted Jesus because I heard people say they had a relationship with Jesus and it was real.

>> 3] I used the example of how I met Lesley to explain the gospel. Get people to explain how it is like marrying a billionaires when we re so far in debt.

>> 4] I used the example of my chat up line "come in and look at my boiler" Jesus' chat up line to us is "I want to spend time with you" is this helpful to renew your relationship with Jesus?

>> I was prepared for the notes on the second half of my talk which involved Nehemiah and prayer. You can look at that if you want too but I don't have the scripture in my head think it is chapter 1 verse 4 but I could be wrong.

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New Year's Resolutions - Motivated by Love

Neal Garratt (Sun, 04 Jan 2015)

Neal started the New Year off with a look at New Year's Resolutions and how we should be motived by love.

Further notes and questions may follow in due course.

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