Presbytery Prayer Points – June 18

Here are the Prayer Points for our IPC Church’s and Church Plants  – IPC Presbytery Prayer Points – June 18

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Yr 2 – Day 281 – 287

Yr 2 – Day 281 – Sat 23 June – It was a day off with a  quick pastoral visit to see our church’s newest baby, all well wonderfully. The beginning of a heat wave and the afternoon was spent at our school fete. There was the usual ‘talent’ show but more international than usual. The Somali ladies who make the wonderful curry came out and did traditional dancing which was great. There was also Polish sausage, the kids spent their money on tat but loved it.

 

Yr 2 – Day 282 – Sun 24 June – I was on in the morning on Matthew 8, I’ve discovered some structure to Matthew 8 and 9 which I think should help me in being clear. Lots of visitors and a local couple who came for the first time, so I’m praying they’ll return. We had just one back for lunch which was nice and then went round to our neighbours who were having a birthday. Donald preached in the evening on Psalm 45, I was so thrilled in how he preached, he has a real gift. We will miss him hugely as a congregation and I more so but I hope he goes to ETS next year and studies hard. I caught up with Alun Ebenezer to round out the day.

 

Yr 2 – Day 283 – Mon 25 June – Our poor childminder Debbie isn’t well so I was on childcare and just about managed to get the older two to school. I went to Little Stars and our church mums looked after Phoebe. I met with my summer intern Dave Hills who is with us for the summer from Westminster. After giving lunch to Phoebe reinforcements arrived and so I was able to visit one of my elders taking along beer! In the evening we had joint elders/ deacons budget meeting and then the deacons stayed on for their meeting. I had to do a visit with one of our deacons after the meeting so wasn’t back in till 11. A long, full but good day.

Yr 2 – Day 284 – Tue 26 June – I was on childcare and then had accompanied a new family to an appointment. and most of the morning was spent on that. Chris R on Psalm 50 at ELT and then a farewell bash for our interns. I’m preaching in Romford on Sunday morning which is a good thing as I’m nowhere for Sunday, so will go back to Numbers 16 I think. I worked late to catch up on some things.

 

Yr 2- Day 285 – Wed 27 June – I was up and down the road to the school 4 times. Ellie and Noah had their sports day – ‘Sports’ having a very broad interpretation. The school is a building site so it was even less competitive than usual. Fair play to them for keeping it on with the boiling heat. I got very little done in the middle of the day and so didn’t make it to house group.

 

Yr 2 – Day 286 – Thu 28 June – Meetings, Meetings, Meetings – Early morning session prayer, then Jess, then Chuck, then Lourens for lunch. Lourens is going to do a 4th year at Oak Hill and come to us on Sundays. He’s recently come under care which is encouraging and I think his gifts will be able to help us in a few areas. In the afternoon I had another meeting and so didn’t get to the books until late afternoon and by that time my brain was mush.

 

Yr 2 – Day 287 – Fri 29 June – I met with Dave Hills, he’s shadowing me this summer and jut finished third year at WTS. We’re going to read through some things together starting with Willie Still ‘The Work of the Pastor’, I so love it. I was studying then Donald was about for lunch and has sorted internet in the study and a printer!!! I met with Gething, Chris and Dave at the Drayton to chat through a few things then Gethin and I went on to the Cornhill Leavers Service at St Helen’s. It was a delight to see some old friends and the course has been such a huge blessing to our church. The service was ok, I enjoyed Nigel’s stuff on ‘Being Useful to the Master’, I wish we’d had a more reformed shape to the service. There was little weight to what was going on.
In my day there wasn’t such a thing we just did sketches and made fun of one another. David and Heather Jackman were there who do me the world of good whenever I see them.

Guest Post – Gethin Jones on going to Paris

Over the past year, it’s been a great joy to have Gethin Jones work alongside us at IPC Ealing.  The congregation have loved having him around and it’s our joy to be sending him to Paris (in the best sense of sending!). Gethin passed his Ordination exams at our last Presbytery and will God willing be Ordained on Sat July 14 at Gunnersbury Baptist 4pm, all are welcome. Simon Arscott from All Nations, Ilford will preach. I asked Gethin to write something of his plans for the future as he moves to Paris and if you’re not supporting him, let me encourage you to start partnering with him for the sake of the gospel in France...……

GEthin

One of the things I’ve enjoyed about reading this blog is that it’s delightfully ordinary—and it’s been my privilege to spend the past year seeing and experiencing life at IPC Ealing up close. After three years of seminary, I’ve been serving here as an assistant and I’ve loved being part of a Church led in worship that is rich, robust, warm, and welcoming. It’s a church where hospitality is in the congregation’s blood, where Christians of all ages have been taught to love learning more about our Lord, and where outsiders are warmly welcomed and hear the gospel and eventually, one by one, become disciples. It’s a church where elders passionately labour to shepherd the flock, and deacons serve humbly, quietly, and tirelessly. It’s also a church that loves and serves sacrificially in the context of the presbytery. And all that is just a partial snapshot.

So why on earth would I leave IPC Ealing? Because I have a burden for Paris. I lived there for five years (having intended only to live there for two) and I felt compelled to stay and serve long term. I only left so that I could go to Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, and I spent this year in Ealing to deepen my relationship with the IPC.

I would love to see the kind of robust church I’ve experienced here in Ealing planted in Paris. The Lord has been very kind to France over the past few decades, with thousands coming to faith in Christ, and hundreds of churches planted. That said, on the one hand, there’s a long way still to go, and on the other, the existing church needs support and encouragement. So, Lord willing, I’ll be ordained as an elder in the UK Presbytery of the IPC on July 14 and sent to Paris by IPC Ealing in August, with the help of United for Mission Worldwide (ufm.org.uk), a UK-based organisation that exists to help churches to send missionaries.

My long-term dream, for which I pray and would like to invite you to pray with me, is to see an IPC congregation planted in Paris within the next decade (factoring in the time identify men qualified for eldership and train them), and a France / Francophone Europe Presbytery (at least five established/particularised churches) within the next fifty years.

But that’s the long-term goal. Initially, I’ll be serving as an assistant at La Chapelle de Nesle — a delightful Reformed Evangelical church plant that I was privileged to be a part of when it began five and a half years ago. It meets in the heart of Paris, in the 6th Arrondissement. I’ll also be looking to develop further ways of helping Christians better understand what they believe and why.

While the work to be done is daunting, I’m optimistic. As I’ve seen La Chapelle de Nesle reach out to French people in central Paris with a robust, historically-rooted presentation of the Christian faith, people have realised that this thing called Protestantism isn’t a recent American import but an old, thought-through, crunchy faith that has taken root in France before, and that can really take root in their lives as well. So one by one, people have been reconciled to God. That’s the kind of work I’d love to see multiplying in France.

As I get ready to transition into this difficult work, I’m looking for people to partner with me in prayer; and living and serving in Paris is expensive so I’m also looking for people to partner with me through giving. Could this be you? If you’d like to learn more or pray with me, you can sign up to receive my e-mail updates at bit.ly/parisgethpray. If you’d like help financially, you can give through UFM Worldwide — they’re a registered charity in the UK and registered as a 501(c)(3) in the USA. UK-based partners can set up gifts (and add GiftAid) at ufm.org.uk/how-to-give, and US-based supporters can set up tax-effective giving at ufmworldwide.org/donate.

Thanks for reading!

Put your foot in the door – Joel Beeke

Joel Beeke in in his wonderfully encouraging book “Portraits of Faith” speaks of the Canaanite woman’s (Mt 15:21-28) maturing faith and how God uses wayward children and trials to strengthen our faith………

“The beggar sticks his foot in the door.  Do you have an unconverted child, a wandering prodigal, for whom you have been praying for two or three years?  Keep your foot in the door!  God is maturing your faith through that beggary.  Do you know what would happen if all your children were beautiful, wonderful, strong Christians, stalwart sons and daughters of Jesus Christ in the faith?   You would be a proud dad.  God is maturing you through your children.  Keep that beggar’s foot in the door.  Show God his priorities.  Show him his covenant faithfulness.  ‘Truth, Lord’ – he was converted, but I was a bad father. ‘Truth, Lord’ – I made so many mistakes.  Yet art thou not the God of the covenant?  Bring back this child, Lord!  Bring back this child!

I come from a paedo-baptist tradition, and I am not trying to push infant baptism here, but I want to tell you a short story.  My father and mother had a difficult time with one of my sisters for a little while.  When she was seventeen years old she left home and for three weeks they had no idea where she was.  You can imagine how they prayed.

One day my dad was going by the church and he went in (he was an elder for many years and had a key).  He went to the very spot where she had been baptized as a baby. (You may think this sounds mystical, but he did not do it mystically.)  He fell on his face at that spot and said, ‘O God of the covenant, God who hast promised to take from our seed, and from our seed’s seed, and to draw them to thyself, O God, hear our cry.  Truth, Lord, I am an unworthy father, but have mercy upon our child.  Was she not named with thy name when she was baptized?  Was she not baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost?  O God, confirm thine own name.’

So he wrestled.  When he got home, my mother met him at the door, weeping.  She said, ‘Our daughter just called.’  He said, ‘When?’  It had been the very time that he was wrestling on that church floor.  He called her up and she said, ‘I want to come home, Dad.  Am I still welcome?’  It was the beginning of her conversion.

God can use the greatest obstacles, the greatest burdens.  God used this demon-possessed daughter to cause the mother to grow in grace.  And every problem you have, my dear Christian friends, whether it be with a child or because of an illness, whatever it may be in your life, that affliction is designed by God to mature you in the faith, so that you become a wrestler with God, and a beggar who sticks his foot in the door at the throne of grace.  You keep your foot there!  God is maturing you through every single trial.”

Beeke, Joel, Portraits of Faith, Bryntirion Press, Bryntirion, Bridgend, Wales, UK.  pgs 76-78

Year 2 – Day 280 – 284

Y2 – Day 280 – Mon 18 June – A day in solitary confinement, it was magnificent, I was in the new study with my books. I began to do some work on the Fruit of the Spirit but didn’t get very far, I’m hoping to preach through them this autumn. I did some work for ELT tomorrow on Psalm 49 and enjoyed the prep. In the evening we had a couple over who are getting married later this year for a Chinese and kept track of the England game

 

Yr 2 – Day 281 – Tue 19 June – A morning of forgetfulness – I missed the early morning prayer meeting and then had a full on morning, I’d also forgotten that I had an interview reference for some folk in our congregation that took an hour and a half. We had a brief team meeting and then I was on at ELT on Psalm 49. It was a disaster and I realised that about 2 minutes in, I had 5 points and then 5 points of application – 2 of the application points were the same as the main points. The talk is only 22 minutes so we were averaging a point every other minute. I had a great illustration that I’d thought up on Airport Security but it was wasted in the talk, I’ll recycle it. I was taken out for lunch by visiting Americans, who were as always with people from the US encouraging. A bit of reading and then in the night I was doing a Pastoral Visit.

 

Yr 2 – Day 282 – Wed 20 June – I got back into Matthew 8 for Sunday morning that fell into place surprisingly easily. In the afternoon I met with Ben Williamson who was one of my first interns here in IPC. He is doing a terrific work in Johannesburg and I’d managed to get him a free copy of Reformation Worship. Bit more study then housegroup in the night.

 

Yr 2 – Day 283 – Thu 21 June – I had a good morning in Matthew 8, lunch with Dick Lucas who gave me 3 bits of advice for preacher
‘Be shorter than you think you’re going to be’
‘Be simpler than you think you’re going to be’
‘Have a single focus’
the man is a giant. I was back in the afternoon and then had completely forgotten I was speaking at Route 66 on Divorce, I dug out some material and wrote furiously. I got through it and there’s no easy way to speak on it. I’m not sure it helped them much however they all listened and scribbled notes

 

Yr 2 – Day 284 – Fri 22 June – I cracked on with Matthew 8 in the morning and then attended a seminar put on by our denominational solicitor’s firm on what I thought was going to be immigration. It was the bizarrest lunch/ afternoon I’ve had in a long while. The first half was on divorce and I’ve never been in anything like it – London is the divorce capital of the world, we were given advice on where to put your assets, we should all be getting pre nup/ pre marriage agreeements in whatever country you live in and basically don’t get married in Italy. A man then spoke on tax and basically spending 45 midnights in the country are the key to paying less tax. At one point he sayd if you see your child for under 90 days a year that can help you with your tax and proving your not in the country. Our solicitor was the last to speak on immigration and interestingly talked about Meghan Markle and how basically she didn’t meet any criteria but as a gift of the home secretary was given a Passport. It was fascinating, everyone kept calling me the Rev and a different world. I had remarkable chats with folk afterwards, one divorce counsellor offering to come and speak at church. I’ve known our solicitor for years and we had a great chat afterwards about the gospel and the like, I’m trying to push her back to church. It went on way longer than I’d thought so I missed  the local primary school fete and the tubes were awful in rush hour. In the night I was just finishing off sermons.

An open letter to the Banner of Truth Trustees

Dear Trustees of the Banner of Truth,

We greatly appreciate your work over many years but want to request of you publicly that you reprint “Redemption Accomplished and Applied” by John Murray in a Clothbound Edition. We do not feel the book needs neither endorsements nor a Foreword by Sinclair Ferguson. We and the Christian Church in general make this request with great urgency,

Yours sincerely,

Rev. A. Paul Levy – Minister, International Presbyterian Church, Ealing

Rev. Dr. David Gibson – Administrator, Catalyst Conference & Minister, Trinity Church, Aberdeen (IPC)

Rev. Jonty Rhodes – Minister, Christ Church Central (Leeds) & Iwerne Camps & holder of the William Taylor Chair in Systematic Theology at the IPC Seminary.

Bishop J.C Ryle – Late Bishop of Liverpool

Mrs Mary Levy – Paul’s Mum

Prof Gerhardus Vos – Late Chair of Biblical Theology, Princeton

Pastor Jeremy Walker – 17th Century Puritan and Minister of Maidenbower Baptist Church

Rev Iain Clements – Minister, Latimer Church, Beverley

Mr Leon Britton – Swansea City Legend

………

Add your name and title in the comments and we will add them to the letter

Mr Hywel George – Media Mogul/ Podcaster Extraordinaire

Mr John Graham – Minister in Training, PCI – Most eligible bachelor in N. Ireland

Mr James Bryner L Chu – Pastor of Pilgrim Community Church, Quezon City, PH

Rev Rob Ilderton – Token American

Stephen Steele – Moderator of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Scotland, Chaplain to Stranraer FC, token exclusive psalmist, known associate of Cromie brothers

Rev. David Bergmark – Minister, Immanuelskyrkan, Tranås, Sweden

Pastor Jonathan Hunt — Notorious New Calvinist