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Posts tagged ‘glimpses’

Glimpses 35

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God speaks at home and at traffic lights

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G’day and welcome to Partake Glimpses Stories. Where we see together how Jesus is alive today, working in peoples lives in different ways and is relevant to the world today, 2000 years after He walked the earth, died, rose again and ascended to the right hand of God the Father. Today we have an experienced pastor, Jim Allis, talking about a situation where God undoubtedly entered peoples lives and transformed them. So over to you – Jim!

Hello there! My name is Jim Allis and I have seen Jesus alive in many situations in my life where God without a shadow of a doubt has entered people’s lives and transformed them. Here is one of those encounters!

One morning the Lord revealed to my heart how to help a person to Christ by explaining the Ten Commandments one by one. During this time she would repent and be converted. Her husband would not respond on this occasion but would at a later date.

When I arrived at her home, I turned to Exodus 20 and when I came to the fifth commandment regarding the relationship she had with her parents she turned to her husband and blurted out “I haven’t kept that one. I have not honoured them. Jim, can I get right with God now?” “If you know God is dealing with you” I replied. She did, and oblivious of others in the room listening, she submitted to God and her life was changed, proving she was wonderfully born again that evening. Many years later she is still going on with the Lord.
When her husband saw what was happening to his wife he said “I am not ready for this” I quietly said “ I knew you wouldn’t today, but you will one day.” Some months later just like the Lord said would happen, he was converted as he sat at traffic lights waiting for them to change from red to green. God spoke into his heart and in the time it takes for lights to change he entered into knowing the joy of the Lord as he came clean with God. He too is now a mature believer.

If you have found this helpful, please do let us know how it has helped your own journey of faith. Thank you.

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Glimpses 32 – Richard

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From Skeptic to Salvation

(Originally recorded Sunday 21st. June, 2009 at 6:30 pm)

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Hello my name is Richard. I have been asked to record the words of my testimony as I read them out at my Baptism in June 2009. Before I read my testimony at my Baptism, I said a short prayer. I shall start by saying the same prayer now.

Heavenly Father, Almighty God, please hear my prayer. Please give me now the strength, ability, and most of all, the humility, through your Holy Spirit, to say what I want to read out to this congregation, as you would want me to read and say it Lord. Please allow me to keep control of myself, and my emotions, whilst doing so. I stand humbly before you Lord God, and before your beloved Son, Christ Jesus.

Amen.

Before I speak out my Testimony to you, I wish to thank “all of you” for coming here this evening.

I especially wish to thank the fellowship of Poulner Baptist Chapel ( The Church On The Hill ) for all their prayers, kindness and care shown to me over the past months, of what has been, for me, a difficult time.

I praise the Lord for Dave Roberts, for his help and support, and his World Wide connections through Partake Ministries and his wonderful Web-Site. Because of Dave and his Web-Site, I have received, e-mail prayers from Christians all over the world, which have given me great heart and comfort. So much so, that they have made me cry with joy. I think whenever I re-read them they will always do so.

It is due and down to Dave Roberts, that I am standing here today being Baptised.

I wish to give a special thanks to Jeremy Andrews ” Pastor ” Jeremy from my previous chapel who, through kindness and no small sacrifice to himself, and to his own Church and Fellowship, has come here this evening to Baptise me with Adam. Thank you my Christian friend Jeremy.

As I have said, my name is Richard. I am 62 years of age. For 59 years of my life, I lived with faithonly in myself “.I was at best a Sceptic, at worst an Atheist. I would go right out of my way to test and very strongly argue against anyone I met, who professed to have a faith, in any sort of God. I needed nothing, but my own free will. All my faith was “only” in myself. In 2002 / 2003 my world fell apart. I was left alone to myself. All my lifelong responsibilities disappeared. I became for 2 years a solitary hermit, living in my house, completely alone. It was during this time, alone, that I started to question, :- What my life was about. What was I here for. What was the reason for my being, if there even was one. I wanted, and so needed contact with other people. I needed to talk, to be listened to, and to listen to others. We are not meant to be solitary beings we are social creatures. We so need fellowship with others, like we need food.

After over 2 years of self imposed solitary confinement, I was becoming worried about losing my ability to communicate with others. It was back just before Christmas 2005, I received through my door the usual annual programme of all the Churches in my area, listing all their events, over the Christmas period. I decided to systematically visit all of them. Not to seek faith, Oh No‘, I’m a Sceptic, an Atheist. I just want to have communication with others.

I visited most of the local Churches over the coming months, and always found people to speak and listen to, but none of the Churches somehow felt right for me, until I visited ” Verwood Road Evangelical Chapel “, just up the road from where I live, in Three Legged Cross.

Here I felt good, ” well better “. I liked the way they did things. It was not a liberal church. It was more leaning towards, a Brethren sort of fellowship, but not too hard line. There was no pomp or high ceremony, no fancy clothes or precious things to see or worship. These were ordinary people, just like me.

Over the next 10 months I visited V.R.C. ” on and off ” at first, maybe once or twice a month and found that I liked it more and more, so I went more and more. By October 2006, I found that I was wanting to go not only every Sunday but twice on Sundays.

It was at this time that I seriously decided to the best of my ability, to very fully investigate just what this Christianity was really all about. How could so many intelligent, thinking people, believe in it? For the next 6 months, I lived in the single minded state of total study of the Christian faith. I devoted all of my time to the study of the Bible and many, many books, both for and against the Christian faith.

I prayed and prayed so very hard to God to give me a definite sign – a proof that God was out there and not something made-up in my own mind. I was in heartfelt tears, many, many times, asking for some proof, a miracle even, a certain sign, anything, but no sign or proof came. I was God’s for the taking, but both He, and my heart, wasn’t ready.

In late March 2007, something happened to turn me completely off Christianity. I went from very serious ” single minded seeking ” with all my heart and soul, TO – ” This Christianity is certainly not for me “.

It is not ” at all ” important what ” event ” occurred to cause this absolute turn around. It is only important to understand that it was very strongly driven by My Own Self Pride “. God knew that it had to be, for Him to use it, to turn this 60 year old Atheist into a Christian. It was during my very powerful, and emotional efforts, to try and take a wrong, and turn it into a right, No matter what the cost, that my eyes were turned back into myself. To see, or to start to see, that all I hated and despised in others, was also, very present in myself. I was no better, than all those that I felt the very strong need to ” bring to rights ” in my life. It was at this moment in time, of now seeing, just what ” I Am “, that my life changed forever.

I was born on Easter Friday, Good Friday, the 4th. April.

In 2007, Three days after my 60th. Birthday, at exactly 12:32 p.m. lunch-time on Easter Saturday, the 7th. April, I at last discovered, that I was nothing, undeserving of my life, A Sinner that so needed the forgiveness of God. This opened my heart to God, and at that very moment, He Came In. It was at this time, that I understood, for the very first time, the Amazing events of Easter, and that Jesus died for me, that I may have life, and live life, to the full.

The next day, Easter Sunday, 2007, I took my first communion with my God.

I would now like to say, that I am not a writer, I agree with ” Winnie The Pooh Bear “, when he said.:- “Yes’ I know all my letters, but my spelling is wobbly. It’s good spelling, but it wobbles, and my letters get into the wrong places!”

I’m not a poet either. I’m a practical man, an engineer. In the early hours of Easter Monday morning, 2007, at 1:30 a.m. whilst I was sat in my back porch thinking ” in a daze ” about what had happened to me on Easter Saturday, I picked up a pen and without thinking, wrote out the following poem. It is un-referenced, original and un-edited. It is just as it came down to me, 37 hours after finding my faith. This poem is called :-

The Fellowship – ( Revealed )

I don’t know where I’m going,

I don’t know where I’ve been,

I don’t know what’s in store for me,

But God has hold, to let me see.

For he will surely show my way,

My guide, to lead, to change each day.

To give me life, I’ve never seen,

To serve, to try, to make life clean,

To hold me close, to let me go,

To understand, To love me so.

My God is One, with saviour Christ,

He gave for me, The Total Price.

My heart is found, the Ghost within,

Salvation sealed, Forgiven Sin.

My past remains, but all washed clean,

My future comes, like it’s never been.

I cannot say the words I feel,

Of things that are, to me so real.

My sad, sad past, is gone, my futures clean,

For with my eyes, new life I’ve seen.

This gift of love, that has been given,

Shall remain with me, right through to Heaven.

The Fellowship – ( Revealed )

Easter Monday, 9th. April, 2007. @ 1:30 a.m.

Written & Composed by Richard, – With God’s Help…..

I believe that this poem was written with God’s help. There is nothing good that can come out of me, from my own self, Self. Any good that may come from me, comes through me, from God. So please just Praise the Lord. ( Thank you.)

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Glimpses 31 – Sharon

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Glimpses of the Risen Christ

A Testimony from China.

An interview with Sharon about her meeting the risen Jesus Christ and glimpses of how He is relevant to her daily life.

  1. How did you become a Christian?
  2. What is your favourite piece of Christian worship?
  3. Who in church history do you most admire?
  4. When did God last answer one of your prayers?

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Glimpses 55

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Glimpses 55 –

Life from the Faroe Islands

This is the story of Life from the Faroe Islands; sharing about her encounter with Jesus Christ, how he saved her physically and spiritually and what she wants to do with the rest of her life after graduating from University – fighting injustice.

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Testimony – Adele

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Testimony – Adele

Christian testimony

The story of Adele, telling her story of how God rescued her from joining the Jehovah Witnesses cult. Thanks be to God!

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Glimpses 36

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Jenny from Taiwan

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G’day and welcome to Partake Glimpses Stories! Today I have a special guest from Taiwan giving a glimpse of how she started her Christian walk. She will be speaking in Chinese, so please do let other Chinese speakers know about her testimony. Thank you and over to you, Jenny.

If you have found this helpful, please do leave a comment! Thank you.

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Glimpses 52

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Dietrich Bonhoeffer

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G’day and welcome to Partake Glimpses Stories, where we see together how Jesus is alive today, working in different peoples lives in different ways. We aim to show Jesus as being relevant to the world today, some 2000 years after He walked the earth, died on a Roman cross, rose again to new life from physical death and ascended back to the right hand of God the Father. Today, once more we take a step back to recent history, into the 20th century, and a very brief glimpse at the Christianity of a well-known Christian.

Beginnings

Dietrich Bonhoeffer was born on February 4, 1906 in Germany. He was a a Lutheran pastor and theologian and had spent time studying in the USA and pastored two churches in London, England in the early 1930s. He returned to Germany to lead an illegal training centre for pastors during which time, he also called for more vocal and active opposition from the churches towards Hitler’s treatment of Jews. Because of this, he was forbidden from preaching, teaching, and all speaking in public to gathered audiences. Dietrich was ultimately arrested and imprisoned for his part in a plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler. What we will concentrate on in this study is how he viewed and lived Christian discipleship. In doing so we will look at some excerpts from two of his published writings “The Cost of Discipleship” and “Letters and Papers from Prison”

Discipleship

Jesus Christ, when He talked about the cost of following Him and being His disciple said this:If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine. Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me.” (Matthew 10:38; 16v24-25)

Echoing these words, Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote “When Jesus Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die. … Discipleship is not an offer that man makes to Jesus Christ, nor is it hero worship, but intimacy with Christ.” (The Cost of Discipleship). He knew that as a Christian, a person has to take up their own cross in following Jesus and count the cost of being a disciple of Jesus Christ.

Dietrich also wrote “Earthly goods are given to be used, not to be collected. … The Christian disciple must receive his portion from God every day. If he stores it up as a permanent possession, he spoils not only the gift, but himself as well, for he sets his heart on accumulated wealth, and makes it a barrier between himself and God. Where our treasure is, there is our trust, our security, our consolation and our God. Hoarding is idolatry.” (The Cost of Discipleship)

In a Sermon on 2 Corinthians 12v9, he said that “Christianity stands or falls with its revolutionary protest against violence, arbitrariness and pride of power and with its plea for the weak. Christians adjusts themselves far too easily to the worship of power. Christians should give more offense and shock the world far more than they are doing now. Christians should take a stronger stand in favour of the weak rather than considering first the possible right of the strong.

A Cost of Following Jesus

These are strong and powerful words I am sure you would agree! So did Bonhoeffer’s life match his words? In one extreme example, we look at his first days in prison

“For my first night in prison I was locked up in an admission cell. The blankets in the camp had such a foul smell that in spite of the cold it was impossible to use them. Next morning a piece of bread was thrown into my cell; I had to pick it up from the floor. The sound of the prison’s staff vile abuse of the prisoners who were held for investigation penetrated into my cell for the first time; since then, I have heard it every day from morning to night.

The first night in my cell I could sleep very little because in the next cell a prisoner wept loudly for several hours. Nobody took any notice.

After twelve days the authorities got to know of my family connections. While this was of course, a great relief for me personally, from an objective point of view it was most embarrassing to see how everything changed from that moment,. I was put in a more spacious cell which was cleaned for me daily by one of the men. When the food came round I was offered larger rations, which I always refused, since they would have been at the expense of other prisoners.” (Malcolm Muggeridge, The Third Testament)

So, after just twelve nights in atrocious conditions, because he had good connections on the outside of prison, he was moved to a more spacious, cleaner and quieter cell. He probably had no choice about the cell he was given. He could have just eaten the extra food given to him there. But he decided not to, because to eat that extra food, he would have robbed somebody else. For him, material possessions and food were part of his Christian discipleship – part of the cost of following Jesus Christ faithfully. Just as they are of your Christian discipleship – whether you are aware of it or not.

Speak Out!

But another facet of the cost of Dietrich Bonhoeffer following Jesus was speaking out for those who had no voice. In the case of Bonhoeffer, the Jewish race undergoing systematic persecution and extinction under Hitler and the German Nazis.

He wrote those: “We have been silent witnesses of evil deeds; we have been drenched by many storms; we have learnt the arts of equivocation and pretence; experience has made us suspicious of others and kept us from being truthful and open; … Will our inward power of resistance be strong enough, and our honesty with ourselves remorseless enough, for us to find our way back to simplicity and straightforwardness?Letters and Papers from Prison

He ultimately paid the price for his speaking out for those who had no voice. His life motto could be summed up in these 2 sentences from his writings: “One act of obedience is better than one hundred sermons … Action springs not from thought, but from a readiness for responsibility,” He was eventually hanged on April 9, 1945 following the failure of an assassination attempt on Hitler on July 20, 1944. His life actions echoed his words. How are you counting the cost of being a disciple of Jesus Christ? What do your material possessions and consumption of necessities of food say about your being a Christian? Are you willing to speak up for those who have no voice in your local community, national community and global community?

If this has helped you in your journey of faith, please do let us know how it has helped your own journey of faith by making a comment below!. Thank you.

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