Was a full on day but was quite encouraging all the same. Whatever possessed me to think that speaking on The God Delusion, having people back for lunch, leading the communion service and preaching on Romans 8, and then hosting a barbeque for the Youth Group later that evening would be a good idea?
We had a number of new people around for the first 'proper' morning service after Holiday Club, some extra kids, some Mums (because everyone knows Dads are too hard to go to church) and the Dawkins thing turned out to be less scary than I feared. Was surprised by how feeble some of the professor's arguments are. He is (presumably - it's hard to tell with O level Physics) a brilliant scientist but his theology is very poor. Wasn't the greatest sermon ever but got a few thank yous from people who seem to have appreciated it.
Lunch was lovely, with a family 'home' from Ethiopia who popped across to speak in church about the work they are doing. Rather humbled by what they have chosen to do in order to do their work, in terms of such a different country and culture. As always, interesting to hear what they find odd about UK compared with five years ago when they left.
Grabbed a little sleep (a Pastor's secret weapon on a Sunday afternoon) before the evening service, where I think I completely woke up about 20 minutes into the service. Great to be able to preach about the complete freedom that there is for Christians, how the slate is well and truly wiped clean. "There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus". Reflected on the difference between feelings and fact. There are times when we don't feel this but it is still fact. Glorious.
Then one burger too many at the BBQ but great to see extra kids come along. Three were new because they have just become old enough to attend, two are on the fringes and have hardly been around at all. Hope this will encourage them to join with the other six and that we'd grow into something great for the kingdom.
A long day. A good day. The next few days are busy too but predictably I was get to sit and read and rest for the best part of the day this morning because the dentist was running late. Is it healthy when you look forward to a filling and the time you have to spend in a waiting room?