Volume 8 Number 5

1. My friend Matt recognises that busy, educated, affluent people often have plenty of friends and feel they don't need to me Christian friends on top of it all.

*But* such people are often too busy and spread themselves too thin... they have lots of relatoinships but none are very deep. When they get a taste of that in the church, perhaps they will see the appeal.

That presupposes we are any different in the church...

2. At a recent conference the speaker suggested this definition of a worldview: 'What you think when you are not thinking"

3. I am about to preach on Luke 8. In verses 16-18 we find these familiar words:

16"No one lights a lamp and hides it in a jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, he puts it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light. 17For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open. 18Therefore consider carefully how you listen. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he thinks he has will be taken from him."
Now Jesus often uses very similar phrases and ideas in different contexts. He can even mean different things by the same parable or phrase. I think this is the case here. I was reading this passage in the light of Matthew 5 (you are the light of the world... let your light shine before men) and Matthew 10 (proclaiming from the rooftops). As a result I took the things that are revealed and brought into the open (Luke 8:17) to be the truths of the gospel.

But on reflection, and carefully re-reading, I don't think so. I think this whole passage us about the light of God's word shining into our lives, exposing the secrets of our hearts. That explains the 'therefore' at the start of verse 18 too.

4. At this churchplanting conference by Martin Robinson, when he spoke on gathering and training a core group/launch team, I was expecting lots of hints and tips and practicals about skill-sets and group dynamics. Instead he spent most of an hour talking about godliness, spiritual discipline and so on. It wasn't generalised, superspiritual stuff, but really good quality, practical application.

It was a good reminder: a core group has its greatest potential in the way it establishes the spiritual DNA of the church, its values, culture, conversation and mindset.