Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Fruit that will last
Yet another youth ministry book that I came across.
This is interesting in that is is clearly from a "ministry"/discipleship focus.
The key challenging question - that I found helpful - is to ask of our youthwork is it producing fruit that lasts beyond the youth group, young people who go on in faith when they leave home etc.
Not sure about all of the rest - but provokes enough in the early chapters to be worth a look - even if it is from Australia!

Monday, September 27, 2004

Blessed are those who mourn...
Spent the weekend away in Birmingham (again) catching up with friends - originally I was due to be at a meeting up there but it was postponed.
On Sunday morning went to their church, which started with the news of the death of a 32 year old guy who had moved away from their church a couple of years ago. I think it was handled well - although as someone who is not a pastor (by calling or primary gifting!) I found myself thinking what I would have done if I was the church leader. Not sure what the answer is - and it was only later in the day that I remembered the conversation I had been part of last week about lamenting and the need to express more than "joy" or "victory".
One things for sure - in the end there was a strong sense of God moving in that place.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Youth Minstry Musings
I'm leading a training event next week called A beginners guide to church youthwork. Just trying to work out where to pitch it. As often happens teaching something simple means I get caught wrestling with the big issues (like when I had to speak at church on The love of God: Inclusive -sounds easy but I got stuck thinking about the Calvinist idea of limited antonement!).
My current thinking is about whether to go for a more "minstry" approach or take the Danny Brierley line of Youthwork and minsitry based on 5 youthwork values adopted from "secular" youthwork. It'll probably bear no relevance to what I actually teach though!!

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Had an interesting discussion about lamenting with some colleagues yesterday. Now I'm so down I can't bear to write a post (only joking!). But it is something that seems to be coming back as part of spirtuality in several parts of the church (maybe it never went away?) which is probably healthy - sometimes evangelicals can be a bit unwilling to express these things (in my experience).

Sunday, September 19, 2004


Just back from my evening at The Point service at Trinity Baptist, Bexleyheath.
Spooky to be back in the old area, driving along the route of the 96 bus which took me to school everyday!
It was an good service I think- though who am I to judge when I was involved in it? We focused on "fame"and God moving for the sake of his name (inspiration from John Piper), with a few powerpoints (at least one is available at ), candles, stones and things - the usual stuff!

Got to catch up with lots of Levesons though, starting with my grandmother (91) , then onto my parents, then my brother's tribe - all after bonkers traffic and before the meeting!

Friday, September 17, 2004

Settling in!
Finally getting sorted in the new place. Strange to be somewhere different after 5 years. Got a phone line now - although better be brief as I'm paying for this internet connection by call time until I get my deal sorted!
The pic is Suzie locking up the old place.
Posted by Hello

Speaking at an event in Bexleyheath on Sunday night - the area where I grew up! I think it needs to be interesting and interactive - so I've got some work to do!

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Tiredness still abounds after the move - gradually getting sorted! Looks like a trip to everyone's favourite flat-pack furniture store is on the agenda for tonight.
Frustrating morning - trapsing up to London for a meeting that was cancelled, but no-one told me!
Meanwhile just got hold of a book claiming to explode "7 Youth Ministry Myths" - could be interesting!

In the Cafe I'm sat in Liberty X have just come on the radio. Michelle is on the cover of one of the papers today and Loaded magazine wearing very little - (no this isn't a confessional!) - but interestingly when I was in Gateshead 10 years ago she was part of the church youth group where I was working! Funny how things change!

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

What no internet connection?
The move happened on Saturday - thanks to Carl, Andy, Marie, Dave & Lil for their help!
Shifting boxes up 3 flights of stairs was not so much fun - but we're in!
Unfortunately phone & therefore internet connection has not been so straight forward - so this is being posted from a Cafe - which is not so bad! I can pick up e-mail via my PDA which is quite helpful.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Rock 'n' Roll Posted by Hello

Very strange evening yesterday! Went to at the Monk Club in Richmond. This is a live music night in a basement below a church (who I went for a job with a year or 2 ago)! The whole thing was a bit "left field". We went to see Remedy (above), but turned out another friend drums with the "house band". Very loud but good fun. There was also a band called Falling Leaves who were not so great (in my opinion) but who have been around since punk began.

Meanwhile the move happens tomorrow and chaos reigns! Boxes and stuff long forgotten - what shall I do with that old Atari ST? Or that Roland Synth with a broken key?

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Supposed to be running a Youthworkers Away Day right now - but nobody wanted to/was able to come (not sure which!!). No worries though - gives me more time to pack - just boxing up work stuff - all those books and files which I should probably sort through!

Been re-reading God and the Generations by David Hilborn and Matt Bird - some interesting insights about cultural change and generations. The first couple of chapters come down quite clearly against niche "youth church" but it raises some good questions about the biblical notion of generations and how that relates to todays analysis. Also how the church has swallowed work in this area done primarily by marketing people.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Letting Go
Been thinking about letting go and how hard it can be to give stuff up.
During the last few months there have been quite a lot of changes - my role changing, leaving Back to Reality etc., Suzie's job change, about to move.
Sometimes it is easier to look back than forward, and to try and keep hold of stuff, keep involved and informed about stuff which is no longer the focus. Maybe a desire to go back to the familiarity of Egypt?

Been also reflecting on the verse "restore to me the joy of your salvation" (Psalm 51) and how much the hassle of "ministry" and church and all that goes with, and the desire to change and be mission etc., can make us lose our joy and our wonder at the gospel.

Monday, September 06, 2004

Ended up at 2 very different church services yesterday morninng. Started at a quite trad. Anglican (robed choir, organs, liturgical prayers etc.) for a farewell of their youthworker. Shame to lose them, as they've been very plugged into stuff in the wider area - but it was a good send off, the church clearly appreciated his ministry.
Then on to an ex-brethren pentecostal type thing -to catch then end of a service which included the dedication of a friend's child.
I have questions about elements of both - but God's variety is cool.

The flat move is on this weekend - so the place is looking a bit of a state with boxes and bags everywhere.
Good news - Suzie has just landed a job with an estate agents in Acton! Random but excellent!

Friday, September 03, 2004

Emerging from/for youthwork?
Interesting article : > stories > the gathering
Raises questions about new expressions of church & worship in youthwork, the relationship with wider church etc. And all this is Dorset!

Meanwhile we move house in a week - so lots of packing and stuff to do!
Suzie's car passed its MOT today - so that's one less worry - plus the agency for our current place had no problem letting us out 3 weeks early.Prayers answered!

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Moving too fast! Posted by Hello
Having set a date at the start of October to move, this morning we went to a lettings agent we used when we first got married. They had several flats in our price range and area, so we viewed 2. Turns out one was pretty good, so we've put down a holding deposit, with a view to moving in about 10 days. Now I've got to try and get us out our current flat earlier than planned. All this in happened in less than 2 hours. Still a bit "shell shocked" !