Monday, March 31, 2008

Gearing up for getting away

We had a good day yesterday. Another dedication in the morning which swelled the congregation. Sunday Break was really well attended and the Later Service had good numbers, despite a number of regulars being away.

I preached okay as well. In the morning several people asked me - in response to what I said about Matthew 24:40-41 - what about the rapture? To which I said, 'what about it?' or words to that effect. I politely clarified that I don't believe in it and that it certainly isn't taught in Matthew 24 - quite the opposite, in fact (see last post).

This morning I've had a number of meetings to talk through arrangements for my forthcoming sabbatical - bring it on....!

Linda and I are going to Prague for month in May after the Baptist assembly and then hopefully to France for a couple of weeks in June. Sabbaticals ought to be about rest, refreshment, relaxation, recharging the batteries - and that's what I'm doing for the bulk of mine.

In Prague, we're staying at IBTS and I will be making use of the library to do some research on early church history and continue getting some focus to my studies. This week, I'm writing a paper on leadership ahead of a meeting with my supervisor in a couple of weeks. It's fascinating, though really difficult to keep all the issues in my mind as I create my argument. Hopefully, what comes out at the end of the week will make sense enough. I'll edit and refine it while I'm at spring Harvest.

I've been listening to Larry Norman of late and rediscovered his fabulous Nightmare #71 off what I think is possibly his best album, So Long Ago the Garden (which was part-produced by the great george Martin). It's a wonderful dylanesque song with really contemporary resonances. For instance:

we've paved the forest
killed the streams
burned the bridges
to our dreams
the earth is bursting
at the seams
and in the pain of
childbirth screams
as it gives life
to what seems
to either be
an age that gleams
or simply lays there dying
if this goes on
will life survive
how can it
out of the grave
O who will save
our planet?

Good question - one we might be addressing at the Baptist Assembly

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