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Today is the last day of 2 weeks of promises that we have been reminded of. Today we are reminded from those very familiar words in John 3:16 that God has loved us so much that he has come among us. Remember in December our theme of “God With Us”
Today Rev. Jonathan Cowan reminds us that Jesus does not socially distance.
We are advised to keep our social distance during this pandemic. We can only watch from a distance the pain that this world is experiencing from the effects of Covid-19. However, God got involved in this world and kept his promise and sent his only son to save it. Jesus did not self-isolate from the world, but came to save sinful and rebellious people. Our God makes and keeps his promises so let’s trust him more and more during these days.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.
It is always great when others contribute towards the Blog content and this week, knowing her love of hymns, I asked Frances Bleakley to write a piece for the blog. Frances asked which day I would like it for, and after a brief pause, I suggested Friday.
So now we have it - “Frances on Friday”
Thank you Frances for this meditation.
Frances on Friday
I wish to introduce you to two ladies who have meant a lot to me over the years ---- and both had become blind. The first one was my Grandmother.
After their marriage, my parents continued to reside in the family home in order to support my Grandparents.
Now if that brings to mind a picture of a little old lady sitting in the corner being attended hand and foot, nothing could be further from the truth. My Granny was an active and busy person both in the home and in her Church.
She had insisted that my Mother would resume her teaching career and, with help in the day to day running of the home, this indeed came about.
Here are some lines which sum up how she felt about life:
‘Oh, what a happy soul am I
Although I cannot see,
I am resolved that in this world
Contented I will be.’
And who penned those lines? They were written by a girl at the age of eight and who had become blind when she was six weeks old…. Fanny Crosby.
Fanny went on to write more than 8,000 Gospel Hymns.
One day a close friend played a melody and asked, ‘What does this tune say?’
Fanny Crosby immediately responded: ‘Why, that says ‘Blessed Assurance,
Jesus is Mine.’
This song reflects Fanny Crosby’s walk of faith, as we read in
‘For to me to live is Christ and to die is gain.’
Yesterday Eileen shared a wonderful version of 23rd Psalm sung in four part harmony. Many of you really enjoyed the Psalm, Edgar got in touch to say,
Very much enjoyed this fellows rendering of 23rd psalm. I first heard him on Easter Sunday when he sang “Our God, He is Alive”. Marvellous harmony. Perfect timing. Could listen to him all day!
My name is Michael Eldridge. I’m a pharmacist by trade with a passion for singing. I’ve been blessed by God with the opportunity to share my love for the classic acapella hymns I grew up singing, and still sing today. The goals of my work are as follows:
- To glorify God with the gifts He has made me a steward of as long as He grants me the opportunity to do so
- To inspire brothers and sisters in Christ to use the abilities God has given them to bear fruit in the kingdom
- To refresh and admonish the spirits of all who hear
- To imprint godly lessons and principles upon the most impressionable minds
May God bless you, wherever this page finds you!
“So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will not return to Me empty without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:11
To honour #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek we are giving free access to read the special edition of the Herald (February 2020) that focused on Mental Health Matters.
Read through the different articles looking at mental health among young people, how to deal with grief and how to recognise signs of depression and hear direct from people and experts as they share their stories and advice.
Feel free to share this link with your friends, families and congregations.
A quote from Dr Yeow in the magazine: “We all feel difficult things, that’s part of life. It’s not a bad thing, it’s not sinful, it’s not something to be ashamed of. The ability to express that and share that and to gather with others with shared difficulties – it’s very necessary. It’s part of the Christian life.”
Click Here for Herald
This is a fascinating insight into the lives of three members of PCI who are working everyday on the Frontline. This well worth a listen to understand how difficult it is for Key Workers.
Listen at this link.
Some details about the Podcast - Life on the Frontline – The latest episode of #TheseThreeRemain podcast hears from three Presbyterian keyworkers – a teacher, a GP & a supermarket manager – about how God is still working during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please share, comment, review & subscribe.
It's not just churches that have changed during lockdown. Workplaces have been turned upside down. In this latest episode of These Three Remain podcast, we talk to three Presbyterians who are keyworkers in education, health and retail.
Primary school principal Mark Beattie,
GP Dr Alastair Aicken (who used to lead CSSM in Portstewart)
and supermarket manager Caroline Orr
share their experience of pressurised and changed work environments and how God is working in their lives with PCI's Discipleship Development Officer Rick Hill.
As millions of people around the world worship together, we are thankful for church scattered.
An Update and video from the Dublin City Mission -
Even in the uncertainty of these days, we can still proclaim this is the day the Lord has made as we begin another day preparing a hot Sunday meal for our many homeless friends. In His Name, we rejoice in serving and representing Him in this way! We witness daily HIS faithful protection and abundance provision.
Although I must admit, I am not sure we realised what we were getting into as we enter our 10th week of Daily Takeaway Hot Meal Packs at The LightHouse for the homeless community during this Covid-19 health crisis. Yet it is the smiles, thanks and tears that keep us encouraged and pressing on, in addition to the many supporting the needs required to continue this essential service, now serving over 300 meal parcels each day and distributing countless toiletries and clothing items. We have even begun distributing meals and clothing to homeless hostels and other related services as the needs increase and time lengthens.
You can SEE what we are doing in the attached video. Would you consider being a part of the VISION through the Go-Fund-Me link below, partnering with us in this critical service to our many homeless friends. Together we are representing God's love and compassion in such a unique time of need and despair. This week, a woman came to our door asking for food and clothing in tears, making the comment "I have lost all dignity", such a sad statement to hear.
Thank you to Frances for this.
Puzzle For The Weekend
Thursday was a Lovely Lockdown day, but apparently the storms are moving in over the weekend. I don’t think there will be any snow but here is a winter photo from 2010 in Coleraine. As usual on a Friday there are more pieces (you have all weekend to complete it) As a weekend bonus, I’ll also ask Where Is It?
Yesterday the Where Is It? Was the new apartments/house being built at the Harbour in Portstewart, as you can see from the photograph, below. Congratulations to everyone who guessed correctly. Thanks for taking part. Do still submit your guesses even if someone else has already done it, it gives me an idea if the puzzles are too easy or too obscure.
Where is The Witch’s Hat?