What a Year!

I can remember many years ago wishing for a really quiet year and to be honest I'm still kind of waiting on that wish.

Despite that, 2012 goes down as one of the best years ever for me!

2011 was a true "annus horribilis" that started badly with just about everything that could go wrong going wrong. One day we'll tell the story of what went on but suffice to say that when brothers in Christ lie to and about each other Jesus name is anything but glorified!

What I will say of 2011 is that I remember praying on the beach in the middle the year crying and asking God where on earth do I go from here, my name is mud, my reputaion is in tatters and I'll probably never serve the local church in the Western Cape again, despite having done nothing wrong. Do I run away and return to Blighty or hang on and wait on God? Thankfully I held onto God and the great thing about one's name being trampled into the ground is that you can then only stand on the name of God!

Happy Christmas!

Happy Birthday Eli!

Happy 7th birthday to our amazing boy!

Eli is such a joy and a total blessing to our family and we love him dearly.

Having had his party a couple of weeks ago, Eli's had a quiet day at home playing with his new toys and completing his 500 piece jigsaw. He's also very proud today of his brand new unicycle which has seen a bit of action today.

Now we're looking forward to our birthday tea at Eli's choice of restaurant tonight. So that'll be a massive bowl of spaghetti bolognaise then!

See more photos here.

We're Doomed

In the words of Private Frazer from Dad's Army, "We're all doomed!".

Or maybe not.

Thankfully Dad's Army was a comedy and Private Frazer's catchphrase never amounted to anything. I guess it's the same with all these predictions by the likes of Camping and misinterpretations of the Mayan calendar, they provide for some great comedy.

Sadly after the Mayan farce we have to wait until 2018 for the next comedian's prediction to be proven wrong. Someone called F. Kenton Beshore reckons the world will end between 2018 & 2028.

Amazingly many of the predictions of the imminent apocalypse are by Christians with some big names in the faith having jumped on the band wagon such as John Wesley, Jonathon Edwards & Martin Luther to name a few. It amazes me that anyone who has read the words of Jesus on this matter can still put their head on the block by making such absurd predictions.

Christmas Hampers

We love this time of year because we get to distribute hampers etc on behalf of the church and others.

This year we'll be distributing these sixteen hampers amongst our church families so we're just tidying them up and putting on a Christmas card from church so there's no doubt as to where they are from.

God is good!

Christmas Tree

Finally after a week or two of nagging we let the boys put up the Christmas tree and they did a great job with only minimal moving of decorations required.

They had so much fun doing it and on being unable to decide who should top the tree off with the angel they chose to do it together.

Nice one boys!

Super Sunday!

There are many examples of women in leadership in the bible and just as in life, some of them were great and some not so, but that's one of the strengths of the bible, it reflects so much of the reality of life.

So while some churches turn their noses up at women in leadership or get distracted by voting on the issue we choose to get on with it and allow the women amongst us to blossom and flourish as God intended.

At Tree Of Life this Sunday Paula shared a word and spoke about Progress, looking at how we need and want to progress in our personal lives and church lives. A great word topped off with the attention grabbing point made using a Powerpoint slide of Phineas & Ferb, Joel was well impressed!

It thrills me that we have a number of good people able to teach and preach in church and the fact that one of the best of them is my amazing wife makes me very proud!

7th Birthday Party

On Tuesday we celebrated Eli's 7th birthday with his party. His actual birthday isn't until the 21st but with the summer holidays beginning a lot of his friends will be away so a party would be a bit thin on the ground if we waited 'til then.

Much fun was had by his friends and Eli loved having his class mates over to play for the afternoon.

Mummy was also very clever with the party food, ordering 10 burger meals from a local takeaway which saved a lot of hassle.

Daddy's cake was a big hit and the pure chocolate icing went down a storm!

So with 10 kids pumped full of sugar and hyped by a few games we sent them all home.

The week the Bell's Palsy struck was a very unpleasant week as I thought I might be having a mild stroke. Thankfully that turned out not to be the case but rather it was the palsy.

Having done as much research as I could really be bothered to I was amazed that none of the articles talked about the pain and discomfort involved, most just seemed to take a fairly lighthearted "get over it" attitude.

I was left exhausted and in a lot of discomfort in the first week and the pain hasn't fully gone yet.

During that first week Gerrit & Sharon popped over and Sharon said I should prepare a word for Sunday and not give into the palsy. I was feeling too sorry for myself so asked Chris to stand in for me.

On Sunday, Chris then asked me to read a scripture but I refused, then after a moment or two decided to read it. Paula felt very strongly at that point that God was telling me to declare the name of Jesus if I wanted to be healed.