NEWS MID JUNE 2013
Sunday 26th May, 9.30am – and already the Anglican Cathedral of Butere (20 miles from home) was almost full. A one-time teacher of Yala Theological Centre who I had worked with for many years and who had helped us to teach many classes, had finally reached the point of ordination. He is now an ordained minister in the Anglican Church in Kenya. We had many photos taken together. I became one of the main speakers at the celebration at my friend’s home after the ordination ceremony. Give thanks.
Peter was a terrible man, I have said a few times in recent weeks. When Jesus was on trial, Peter denied any association with him. Peter, it seems, was a fair-weather Christian. When things got rough, Peter let Jesus down. Amazingly, Peter remained a prominent disciple. Jesus can use terrible people, sinners and failures in his service! . . . So continued a message that I have shared with many village congregations in recent days. The same message, that I then link in to the start of Peter’s first letter, comes back and pierces my own heart. Give thanks for God’s forgiveness and grace, and for the penetrating depth of his Word. Pray that God’s truths find a challenging place in people’s hearts.
Everyone’s eyes seemed glazed with tears for almost the whole hour that Deborah spoke. Deborah, a village girl, was articulating the loss she felt at the recent sudden passing away of her brother. The gathered crowd of hundreds was spell-bound by her step by step account of the day of his death. I battled to keep tears at bay as I listened to the heart-wrenching portrayal. I discovered an attraction of funerals; they are events at which usually hidden depths of profound human feeling come to the surface. I saw, yet again, great human pain. I was inspired, yet again, to redouble efforts at sharing the good news of Christ with these African people.
Give thanks for many opportunities for sharing in local congregations. Pray for people affected by funerals. Pray for my Maarifa Lecture, that I am to present at KIST on the 19th of this month. Give thanks for the prospective visit of trainee-minister of Andover Baptist Church Ross Maynard in a couple of weeks.
Find a review of Jim’s 2012 book, put out by London School of Theology here.
My latest book, entitled Communication in Mission and Development, is now available here.