#AdventBookClub: Day 3: Joining the Story

So, here we are, Tuesday night, and tomorrow I shall finally remember to pick up Maggi’s book from my desk – so meantime I’ve picked a couple of phrases I’ve seen from others in #adventbookclub:

Pam: “Luke is telling us a story, a true account, not so that we can be interested or entertained, but so that we can engage with Jesus, God Among Us, and do something about it.  This is not a story to be heard dispassionately, but entered in to and responded to.”

Claire: Reading Luke’s Gospel… “that if he were around today, Luke would be a great user of social media. …we each read, we each bring our own experience, and we share a little of what we learn.”

Richard: “Maggi reminds of this – far more eloquently than I can – and that this intensely human story is exactly the sort of ‘human interest’ story that sells newspapers and magazines.”

… and this video that’s been echoing in my head all day!

And don’t forget the wonders of Dave Walker’s advent cartoons!

Meanwhile, Brian Draper calls for us to focus upon the mundane … that Jesus was not all about the ‘grand achievement’, but the way he got to it:

“Can you imagine Jesus the frustrated carpenter, planing a piece of wood clumsily, hurriedly, while muttering under his breath, “This – is – not – what – I – was – put – on – Earth – to – do …”?- ”

Nope – so neither should we!

Meeting the Ogongorans #TFBloggers

So, looking at the community that we’ll spend most time with:

The Ugandan village of Ogongora is a perfect example of what happens when a church is mobilised to care for the the physical and spiritual needs of those around it. In 2003 the community fled the village – as the rebels advanced. In 2005, after two years in camps, the residents returned. With they had nothing. Houses were burnt and destroyed. Crops, cattle and all livestock gone. All appeared lost.

What was left – by the grace of God – was hope, and the raw potential in the people to improve their own lives.

It sounds like Pastor Joseph will be one of the key people we’ll meet:

and look out for the stories of others: Grace, Elizabeth, Richard and Moses… and who will we meet during our time there? Apparently the second language in the country is English (although we’ll have a translator) so it’ll be great to hear stories of lives transformed directly from the people – and it will be interesting to see whether it will be relentlessly upbeat, or what challenges have been faced – even if not yet overcome…

Happy Christmas [#Ecard] 2010

I wanted to wish a Happy Christmas to everyone (as you may know, I only send Christmas cards to older relatives!), and as per usual, have been looking out for bits and pieces online to brighten up people’s Christmas! Have a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year… I will be enjoying myself in Egypt (and yes, trying not to get eaten by sharks!)… having a ‘digital break’ for 2.5 weeks!! BTW, don’t you just love this shadow pic by 12baskets!!

The Birth of Jesus: Social Media Style

This year, it’s all about the Nativity, so here’s a great video (if you’re into social media, you’ll love it… if you speak Portuguese you’ll love it even more, but I think you’ll get it anyway edit: or we’ve now found an English version!)

Have you come across Natwivity yet?

Meet Joseph, he’s an ordinary guy with a pretty ordinary life. He’s in a relationship with Mary and works as a carpenter in Galilee. This young couple are about to receive some very un-ordinary news and begin an extraordinary journey – One that will change the world forever… (Join 1000s of others on Twitter, Facebook, Website)

Through the eyes of a child…

Cute kids acting out the story more your thing? This one’s very cute!!

Happy New Year and look forward to an excellent 2011…

2011 is the 400th anniversary since the publication of the King James Version of the Bible. Biblefresh is a movement of hundreds of churches, agencies, organisations, colleges and festivals which has a vision to reignite and re-enthuse the church in its passion for the Bible. For many in our churches the Bible has  become tedious and toxic rather than treasured, trusted and true. The aim of the Biblefresh initiative is to encourage a greater confidence and passion for Scripture across the Church.

Biblefresh is asking churches to agree to raise the level of biblical understanding amongst their members by taking practical steps in four areas: Reading,  Training, Translation and Experience, providing resources through the Biblefresh website, book, leaders guide and e-letters which will provide you with ideas as to how to fulfil development in all four areas.

The Big Read 2011

Alongside other projects, I am working on The Big Bible Project, which includes “The #BigRead2011″, part of Biblefresh. The Big Read  involves meeting together in housegroups to read the Bible, making use of Tom Wright’s Lent for Everyone: Matthew (December 2010) with opportunities to go much bigger and much more creative and join in online  (inter)nationally. From quiet sitting rooms with Bibles and books, to coffee shops and Internet chatrooms across the world…. Get involved!