As a part of the teaching today on prophecy, I read out again the prophetic word which was given to the church 14 years ago and which has shaped us as a community ever since. It provides the prophetic foundation to all we believe God for together and is an essential part of our vision. If you have ever doubted the importance of prophecy, hopefully this word will remind you of the scriptural exhortation to ‘eagerly desire the gift of prophecy'. And 1 Thess 5:20-21 says, ‘Do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good'. It is good to know that all we are striving for together is rooted in God's word spoken over us as a people.
This week includes another day with the team here at King's and then 2 days in Leicester with key leaders from Newfrontiers churches across the UK. As always, I am grateful for your prayers! Have a great week!
If you enjoy the King's blog you might like to look at my Leadership Blog as well. (See the link to the right of this posting). Currently I'm posting a paper on Creation produced by a theological research team from within King's. The anniversary of the death of Charles Darwin and also of the publication of his book on evolutionary theory makes this a highly relevant topic for us to look at.
In coming weeks on the Leadership Blog, Deb and I will be reviewing Women Only and Men Only, parallel books written by the husband and wife team of Shaunti and Jeff Feldhahn, Christians from Georgia, USA - of special interest if you are married.
While on the topic of marriage - we are now taking bookings for the coming Marriage Course, a practical course designed to help and encourage couples to get the most out of their marriage. This course originated at Holy Trinity, Brompton (where the Alpha Course also came from!) and runs for eight Tuesday evening sessions from Tuesday 28th April. It also includes a Saturday morning seminar on 4th July. Booking is essential and the cost (£60 per couple), covers a meal for both of you each Tuesday and all the course materials. To reassure you - there are no group discussions! Each couple sits at their own table enabling private conversations as you go through the material together. It's a great course - guaranteed to be profitable, whether you've been married for a few years or for many and has been enjoyed by lots of our members!
I have just spent 2 days at King's, coaching Lead Elders from larger churches within Newfrontiers and I am now looking forward to speaking at our 3 Sunday meetings at King's on the important topic of Prophecy. With the first week of our Special Offering last Sunday we made a reasonable start but I am praying we will have a really strong second week and look forward to announcing the total the following Sunday.
Earlier this week I heard that two more people have been saved at Alpha and that there are now 18 attending our baptismal training. Amazing! Praise God.
Today I have been preaching at King's Church, High Wycombe. This is a vibrant church, which joined Newfrontiers a couple of years ago. It was exciting to see their progress following the launch of a second morning meeting. Being there meant I only preached twice this week!
This coming week I will be meeting with the elders here at our very own King's church - to download some of the lessons from my recent trip to the States. After a busy couple of weeks and thousands of miles covered, spending some time at King's and talking with the elders and the other staff about the future of our church excites and encourages me! I look forward to sharing some of my thoughts on what I saw and heard while I was in the USA with you all in due course.
I'm also looking forward to our second Gift Day next week and to announcing the total given the following week - it will be fantastic to bless Owen and the church plant at Beacon from what is given and also to clear the outstanding amount due on the crèche extension! Please continue to pray and consider your regular giving to King's. The elders and I value and appreciate your partnership in the great work that we are involved in here in south east London.
Wasn't David Devenish great last weekend? If you were unable to attend the conference, the talks can be downloaded from our website and are well worth listening to.
This week has seen me travelling to Cardiff, Winchester, Camberley and Bedford to visit church leadership teams. Fortunately, though this is a busy week, it is nothing compared to the challenges faced by the apostle Paul at various times in his ministry. Have a quick look at 2 Corinthians 11 if you are in doubt! Tomorrow I have a full day teaching church leaders at our London Training Base here at King's.
Don't forget the half-night of prayer on Friday - 10pm - 2am where we will wait on God and bring to Him all that we believe He is calling us to do in these days!
You probably don't need reminding that it's Mothers' Day on Sunday - Phil will be preaching at King's on this occasion. We will be taking up the first of our two special offerings - we want to raise £25,000, part of which will be given to Owen Hylton and Beacon Church (our church plant in Tulse Hill) and the rest will go to pay off the balance of the costs incurred when we extended the crèche rooms last year. Please pray about how much you should give to this extra offering and come on Sunday (or the week after) prepared to be a cheerful giver!
I would also ask those of you who are members and committed financial supporters of King's to seriously consider how to respond to my request to review your regular giving. Where you are able, please give - and in faith! And where you are experiencing financial pressures, give accordingly, but also in faith! We know God is faithful and our faith comes from Him!
It's great to be home with the family again! I really enjoyed my time in the US and look forward in the coming weeks to downloading the things I learned while visiting two great churches at Redeemer, New York and Mars Hill, Seattle.
As soon as I was back the conference was upon us! A big ‘Thank You' to all who made the day work so well and who provided for the 250 people who came along to hear Dave Devenish share from his experience and wisdom on this important topic. We listened fascinated to his stories of encountering other cultures and there was lots of laughter as those who came from various cultures agreed with him on the impressions that a white westerner can make when he is far from home and trying to sort out how life works in this new country! For those who could not be there the talks will be available via the website in due course and I shall also discuss some of the issues that were raised at the conference in future leadership blogs.
And Saturday wasn't the end of it as we were able to have Dave with us at our three meetings today! Out of the story of the woman at the well from John 4, Dave spoke on the need for humility in serving - and in being served; dealing with prejudice and finally - living in the power of the Spirit!
Let's keep learning, growing and building a diverse community to the glory of God!
I'm probably somewhere over the Atlantic as you read this! I've spent the last few days at the ‘Acts 29' Church Planting Conference in Seattle which included the opportunity of spending a brilliant couple of days seeing Mars Hill Church led by Mark Driscoll. Another amazing church and another inspirational leader!
While I have been away I've kept up to date with developments at Kings, including the fantastic news that over last weekend the number of people who have become Christians on this latest Alpha course has risen to 16. Praise God!
I've had a great time in the US and now I'm looking forward to arriving home and seeing Deb and the boys! I am praying we will have an outstanding weekend together with David Devenish - please make every effort to be there on Saturday. Failing that I'll see you on Sunday! Invite your friends to one of our Sunday meetings, it will be a powerful day together - come ready to worship and celebrate that in Christ we are building one amazingly diverse family.
Spending my birthday away from Deb and the boys wasn't my ideal! But, in the circumstances, spending time at the Redeemer Church in Manhattan, lead by Tim Keller, has been a bit of a consolation! There's lots to learn from this church which started in 1989 with 15 people and now has over 5000 attending on Sundays.
New York has a population of 19 million and is the 3rd biggest city in the world; it is loud, brash and full of energy. Redeemer Church operates a multi site strategy as well as multiple meetings, all of which has been interesting to see, and should prove extremely helpful to us as we consider possible next steps at King's.
In between all the stimulating things I have seen at the church, I've been able to go up to the top of the Empire State Building, to walk down Wall Street and to stand in Time Square - good fun to do tourist stuff! I also visited Ground Zero - very moving...
When you read this I will probably be in the air, or adjusting to another bout of jet lag as I arrive for the church planting conference in Seattle, 3000 miles west of New York. Keep praying for me! I want to make the most of this trip. I am looking forward to seeing you all on Saturday at our Diversity conference with Dave Devenish. Being here can't help but confirm my commitment to all we are doing at King's to reach the people of our own city!
We arrived in New York yesterday and have spent the first day with a number of the staff at Tim Keller's church here in Manhattan. Tonight Dave Stroud has promised to take us out to celebrate my birthday - should be fun! It is a great privilege to be here and we are looking forward to another day with the leaders from Redeemer church tomorrow before flying on to Seattle on Saturday. Please pray for Debs and the Boys as they continue with their busy lives in my absence!
Meanwhile, back at Kings, Alpha Saturday will be taking place this weekend and those on the Alpha course will be hearing about the Holy Spirit. This is often a significant day for all involved - please continue to pray for them and also for Annie and the team who are leading the day.
And please do book in for the Diversity conference on the following Saturday (14th). We want as many Kings people to attend as possible and so have decided to offer 50 free places for those who cannot afford the £10 conference fee. In the current economic climate extra expenses may be an issue - if you can pay please do so, if you can't, don't let that prevent you from being part of this important day. Whether you are paying the £10 fee or taking a free place, we need you to complete a booking form. Further details will be in the Kingsweek leaflet on Sunday.
On Friday and Saturday, Deb and I spent time with the pastoral staff and their spouses for fellowship and prayer. While we do get together at other times, this particular event is an annual thing - we enjoy our times together and there's always lots of laughter! It's also an opportunity for Deb and me to provide some teaching and input into our remarkable team. I give thanks that we have a highly gifted and committed team who love God and His church and who serve us all so well.
Please continue to pray for me as I visit Redeemer Church in New York this week, where Tim Keller is the leader. I fly out on Wednesday and then go on to Seattle on Sunday 8th to visit Mark Driscoll's church at Mars Hill. I return to the UK late on Thursday 12th in time for a day with Dave Devenish and the team before our conference on Saturday 14th March. Have you booked your place? This valuable day will help us to continue on the path to building a truly diverse church. We have the chance to hear from a major figure within the Newfrontiers movement and gain from his experience which is second to none.
I am full of anticipation as to what God will do as a result of this significant day - please book now to be a part of this national event!
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Steve Tibbert leads King’s Church London, with sites in Catford, Downham and Lee. Over the past fifteen years the church has seen continued growth, both in size and diversity. Steve also oversees a number of other Newfrontiers churches in the UK. His book, “Good to Grow”, was published in July 2011. He is married to Deb, and they have three sons.
Check out my Leadership Blog here...