Mon 12th - Sun 4th March 2018


Thought for the week

On Sunday we were looking at Nehemiah ch.6, where there was more opposition to those building the wall – except this time it had all turned very personal, and Nehemiah himself was very much the target.  Personal hostility is never nice - but right through the bible those doing God’s work face it (especially Jesus) – so it should not be unexpected. 

The opponents try 3 different ways to get Nehemiah to stop God’s work.  Each time he stays focussed on the job, giving a short, wise reply.

First, they try to try to distract him by calling him to an out-of-town meeting – it happens four times (v.2).  What a wonderful reply: “I am carrying out a great project and can not go down” (v.3). 

Second, they try intimidation, saying that the wall is all part of a plan to rebel against the King of Persia, and to make Nehemiah himself a king - and that they will make sure the king finds out!  “You are just making it up out of your head” Nehemiah says (v.8) - and he was right!  

Thirdly, they try to frighten and trap him, telling him about a plot to kill him and saying the only escape is to hide in the middle of temple.  But that was against God’s law as he wasn’t a priest.  He sees through the plan: “Should one like me go into the temple to save his life?” (v11).  

May God give us wisdom and courage so that, like Nehemiah, we’re not taken away from doing the things He wants us to do. Jesus wasn’t!                          Mark




WEDNESDAY 14th - Ash Wednesday

· “Please give us wisdom to see through distractions to God’s work.”

· Pray for the last day of Holiday Club - for seeds to be sown, and for an enthusiasm to attend the Holiday Club service at Legerton Dr on Sunday

· Great Awakening: pray that God might use our Christianity Explored.



·           “Please help us to discern when the intentions of others are not good.”

· Pray for Harry Hawkes’ family as they attend his funeral in St. John’s.

· Persecuted church - Mexico is one of the most violent countries, due to crime & corruption: pray for physical protection for persecuted believers



·           “Help us not to be led into sin, when others say it’s the only way out.”

· Please pray for our Friday clubs - for leaders and helpers as they enjoy a well deserved half term rest - pray for renewed energy and enthusiasm.

· Pray for our work in the Legerton Dr area, and that many from holiday club will attend the Holiday Club service on Sun at Albert Edward Hall.



·           “Thank you for the Nehemiah’s example… even more for that of Jesus”

· Pray  for the Men’s Breakfast today, and for Clive as he cooks for it.

· For All Saints, Walton for their Children’s work to continue and develop.



· “Please keep us focussed on what you have given us to do in life.”

· Applications have now closed for the vicar vacancy.  Pray for all who have applied, and for wisdom for the Archdeacon as she shortlists.

· Pray that many children and families attend the Holiday Club service.


Mon 19th - Sun 25th


Thought for the week                   

When Jesus tells the Parable of the Sower he teaches us that it’s how we respond when we hear God’s word that makes the difference, when it comes to growing into strong, healthy disciples (Mark 4v20). 

On Sunday we read the wonderful ch.8 in Nehemiah where we see what happened when God’s people heard God’s word    - when it was read and explained to them by Ezra and the other teachers (vs.1-8).

They respond in just the right way.  Here’s 3 of the things that they did:

First, they listened attentively… all morning! (v.3). No need to say more.

Second, they mourned and wept, because they had not been living in God’s way.  And this grief wasn’t just because they’d been manipulated by the leaders – no, Nehemiah and Ezra had to tell them to stop, as it wasn’t the time for that yet.  It was obviously genuine sorrow.  (vs.8-11)

Third, they went off “to celebrate with great joy, because they now understood the words that had been made known to them.” (v.12)  If we think about it, there aren’t many better reasons to celebrate!

Fourthly, they obeyed what they had read.  They found something there that they were not doing and so they decided to do it! (vs.13-17)  That’s obedience.  And while they obeyed they continued to read more. (v.18)

The Word that had been sown was definitely growing!                            Mark



· “Father, help us to listen attentively when we hear your word read.”

· Christianity Explored: last session this week (Mon & Wed) - keep praying!

· Please keep praying for Betel’s ministry with those battling addiction.



·           “May we let your word move us to mourn, if we have not followed it.”

· Pray for the church school year 5’s who are starting their Lent Project.

· Please pray for continued wisdom for Hannah about which things to say yes to and no to, which things to take on, anything to stop doing or take a break from - how to use her time most effectively.



·           “Lord, let us be truly joyful when we come to understand your word.”

· It’s the second of our Marriage Preparation evenings today - pray for all getting married here this year, and for a good turnout tonight.

· Pray for a great awakening in the Legerton Drive area.



· “Dear God, help us to obey your word: in thoughts, words and actions”

· Pray for the first of our Lent Meetings starting tonight - Life Explored.

· North Korea - the worst country in the world for persecuted Christians.  Pray that God strengthens & comforts them, especially those in prison.



· “Father, make us want to keep on reading your word.”

· Please pray for Clive and his Team at Frydays as they meet, welcome and serve members of the community, week by week.

· Pray that we’d have more contact with those in the Legerton Drive area



· “Lord God, may your word be our guide as a church family.”

· Pray for our coffee morning that we can reach out to the community and can welcome a really good crown into our church hall.

· All Saint’s, Walton: for someone to come forward to lead music ministry



·           “May my life be like seed sown on good soil - so your word is heard, it is     accepted and it produces a crop… even 100 times what was sown.”

· Pray for the launch of the new Cap Debt Centre - celebrated today.

· For the candidates to be our new vicar, preparing for the interviews