14 April 2013

sinkholes & sermon quotes

On Saturday during a walk in the Peak District around Ladybower Reservoir I felt compelled to take photos of the one of the sinkholes. I have no particular idea why but my eyes were drawn to the circular patterns and perhaps I thought they may come in useful for a photo project some day. (I am also the sort of person who really hesitates to say 'God prompted me').

Yesterday in church during worship we sang 'I will never be the same'. It is not a song we sing that often and always when we do it resonates very deeply. Being willing to allow God to do the work he needs to do in us in order for us to move on with Him.

                  There are higher heights, there are deeper seas,
                  Whatever you need to do, Lord do in me.

That song is mostly used in response after a sermon, but yesterday it was sung before the speaker. Maybe God has a lot to say..?

Our visiting preacher Rob White spoke on Joseph and here are a few of the key points that really stood out (some paraphrased):

Joseph's story is not a just tale from history

We are all part of God's story here and now, living story

Story = ADventure, ADversity, ADvance (I tweeted this during the sermon, too good not to share)

Dreams borne of God do not have to die in the pit

And the reason I was inspired to take the sinkhole photos was to merge the image with Rob's words:

After the sermon people were invited to the front for prayer if they felt their dreams had died, for whatever reason, health, finance, bereavement, bad luck. Not only was Rob generous with God's word, he was freely extending the hand of God to those who needed it. Friends who needed a helping hand out of the pit. A number of people made their way forward, while we sang 'In Christ alone'.

For us this has been a season of financial difficulty and for me unemployment, but through it all I have been conscious of God's presence in a new way. My dreams have not died, they have been re-ignited in the face of struggle.

I so love those words in the middle of the final verse of In Christ Alone. He holds EVERYTHING in his hand and NOTHING can separate me from Him. Sure I know those words well and they are real to my heart, so nothing new there. But it was as though He was underlining them in bold just to make sure I'd heard, again. And the tears flowed. 

Doubt will shout louder sometimes and try to rob us of God-given dreams, but He's always one step ahead in our story.

No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand

Till He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I'll stand

The full sermon is available to listen here

This post is linked up at Tania Vaughan's place for #mondayministry - check it out and join in


  1. Jo this is lovely and really blesses me today. I often feel my dream has fallen into a pit somewhere and then sometimes God shines a little glimmer of light on it to remind me to just keep going forward. So as in your service I come forward in prayer to Him knowing that no matter what it looks like my dream has not died (maybe changed a bit!) Thanks you

    1. Thanks Tania & as I said on your post I hope this idea takes off. It is good to record what speaks to us & move Sunday into the week as well.
      Sometimes a shaft of light is what we need to keep walking on or a helping hand from someone else.

  2. Oh how I needed to read this today! Thank you so much, Jo, for remembering the important essentials as God spoke them to you, and for being faithful to repeat them for our benefit. This has really encouraged and blessed me on a day when both have felt in short supply. I am grateful to you :) x

    1. Thanks Joy - my other half is good at recording more points in readiness for leading housegroup in the week. We remember things differently don't we?
      I hope you get chance to listen to the sermon too, it's a good one.

  3. Thanks for sharing this Jo. In Christ Alone is the song that originally broke my stony heart and convinced me that I needed God. Being reminded of those lyrics and His promises as i'm struggling with doubt has really helped.

    1. Thanks Mandy - no matter what the critics said about that song at Archbishop Justin's inaugauration, there's just so much in it isn't there? Glad the words were a reminder of His promises (as they were to me too)