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Issue #15 March 2010

e@b Church has changed - Check it out!

Learning to Live Loved


Welcome

Write to Be Heard

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Who Am I…

his year is rolling and underway ... and it looks good so far! So much is coming up this year and it’s all planned with you in mind! Welcome to e@b church ... don’t miss a thing! If you have recently come to visit us or are new to church then we would love to make you feel at home. e@b church is about family and we would love you to be a part of what is going on, at whatever age or stage in life you are in. Make sure you grab one of our welcome leaflets on Sunday, which are full of all the information you need to get stuck in. With a great number of people making decisions for Christ in January we are entering into a season of harvest. So this is your chance to tighten up and tweak your personal world, to bring about a stronger and more prepared you, and to make a difference in the lives of those around you. Come on Sunday’s to find out more. Also last month I turned 49... (hard to believe I know!!). It’s a huge landmark in my story and I’m believing for it to be my best year yet - one full of the faithfulness of God, and the unfolding of His plans, both for me and this church! These are our best days. We’ve got heaps coming up this month including Sacred Assembly, the launch of Coffee House, Sharon Johnson and much more. Simon Foster Senior Pastor

I am a child of the Most High God I am a light to the World, I am anointed, restored and saved from the bondage of sin, I am Transformed, I have the mind of Christ. I am a Warrior, I am an Overcomer, I am a Mother and a Bride of Christ, I am a Proverbs 31 Woman and a Woman of Wisdom. I am Delivered, Sanctified and Saved. I am Beautiful, Courageous, Creative And I am loved Loved with a love that is Unconditional, Loved with a love that is so vast, so deep and so sweet, Loved with passion, Loved with a kind of love that surpasses all things I am a Strong, Powerful Woman that can do ALL things through Christ. That is who I am.

eb Lorna Obinke

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Discover Courses This course is for everyone who has recently made a decision to welcome God into their life and still wondering about it; or just want to learn more . . . We invite you to join us on an exciting journey of discovery as we look at some of the basics of living with Jesus, in an informal and interactive environment. It has the potential to change your life. The course will consist of 8 sessions and the next course starts on Friday 19th March. We meet in the Bistro at 7.30pm - finishing by 9.30pm. Each session will also include a meal together. Free - but you must register, and be prepared to attend the full course. Pick up a brochure in Reception or speak to a member of the Pastoral Team.

New for Wednesdays

Soaking Session Starts Wednesday 10th March Time: 11.30am - 2.30pm “Come and rest in His presence�

Discover Him

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Life Groups Living in Fellowship Effectively

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hen Jesus and His disciples hung out in their ‘Fishers of Men’ Life group, they did life together; ate meals, fished, comforted one another, prayed and saw awesome miracles. Jesus even cooked them breakfast on the beach! (John 21). They also looked out for one another by selling land and using the proceeds to give to those in need (Acts 4v34). Jesus transformed their lives and many others around them. He wants us to connect and love one another just as He loves us (John 13v34). Life groups are a great way to connect people with Him and others, to build relationships and care for each other. Our Life Groups at e@b have three main focuses: 1. Inclusivitiy – they are intentionally inclusive. All are welcome to join a life group. By their nature, everyone can feel included through joining groups with common interests and build deeper friendships. 2. Promoting a culture of Care – We believe that we can all care for and support each other. The groups are a great way to ‘look out’ for one another and we can all help others to develop and grow stronger in faith. Life groups are associated with the Pastoral Care Team and provide a connection to ensure people are supported in their need.

3. Outreach – We are a light to the City. Life groups are also an excellent way to include non-church family and friends. Inviting people to events or regular life group meets; spending time with Christians in a relaxed atmosphere, can provide great opportunities for God to move and change lives. We are really excited that several Life Groups have started up across the church already and have had many positive reports about how people are enjoying getting together. From the Allotment and Sports groups to Men’s prayer and Women’s fellowship groups, they are already proving to be a great way to get to know others. Getting Started To start a Life Group, you need three or more people interested in sharing a similar interest. There needs to be a leader who is committed to growing the group, promote a culture of caring for each other and being connected to people right across the church. There will be a chance to meet with other groups three times a year and celebrate all that God is doing through them. Also we will have regular opportunities for the leaders to connect with the Pastoral Care Team.


gill@lifegroupsbristol.org Joining a Life Group There are a number of Groups already running; Allotments Faustina Montsho-Hammond Chess Joe Lewis Cricket Joe Lewis (summer time only) Dare to be Men (Men’s group) Peter McNamee Five a Side Football Tony Chapell Fitness and Leisure Jordan Farrell, Helen Bowley and Jo-An McFarlane Gas Heads, Bristol Rovers Football supporters Richard Smith International Students Stephanie Wong Nature Enjoyers strollers and walkers Jane Allport Oasis- helping people change their lives for the better Joe Lewis Walkers: serious walking, 10 miles + Jane Allport

“I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance to the full, till it overflows” John 10:10

The following is a list, of areas people have been expressed an interest in already and we would love to connect you to them if you share the same passion. Fishing Fundraising Kites Knitting for Missions Mountain Biking Rugby Women’s prayer Women’s friendship Or you may have other ideas for a group. Let us know and we will let others know too. How do I get connected? There are several ways to get with Life Groups: Go to the Life Group stand, in reception, and pick up a card for the group you are interested in. Each card tells you about what goes on, who the leader is and how to contact them. Alternatively, information about all lifegroups, plus contact email addresses are available on www.lifegroupsbristol.org. You can contact Gill Wilkinson or Sue Lim through the Church on 0117 9232847 or on email at gill@ lifegroupsbristol.org.

There will also be an option to fill out a card expressing your interest in a particular group, suggestions/ideas or for leading a group. These will also be in the church reception area. Please hand your cards to Gill or Sue; any of the Stewards wearing a red t-shirt or the Pastoral Care Team. We want to give everyone the opportunity to get connected. Don’t miss out. Let us know what you are interested in. If you have any questions/concerns or even if you aren’t sure what interests you, come and speak with Gill or Sue and we will be happy to explore it together, hang out together, fellowship and care for one another. They are also an excellent way to include non-church family and friends, spending time with Christians in a relaxed environment. When Jesus had breakfast with His disciples on the beach, he hung out with them and lives were changed through His ‘Fishing Life Group’ and we want to give everyone the opportunity to connect and fellowship with others here at e@b, ultimately encourage an environment where people feel safe to express their needs.

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Simon Foster Senior Pastor

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ore restorative than cosmetic surgery, more life changing than a heart transplant and more empowering than all earthly authority is love. Not just human love but heavenly love, God’s love. What blows my mind about this love is its exceptional capacity to co-exist alongside our love deficient lives. To be moved but not destroyed by all that is broken, to be so radically generous, yet so utterly self sufficient, eternal and at the same time specific. The reason for this is that God’s love does not hinge on yours. The abundance of your love does not increase His. The lack of your love does not diminish His. Your goodness does not enhance His love, nor does your weakness dilute it. What Moses said to Israel is what God says to us: “The LORD did not choose you and lavish his love on you because you were larger or greater than other nations, for you were the smallest of all nations! It was simply because the LORD loves you.” (Deut. 7:7-8 NLT) God loves you simply because He has chosen to do so. He loves you when you don’t feel lovely. He loves you when no one else loves you. Others may abandon you, divorce you, and ignore you, but God will love you. Always. No matter what. This is His sentiment: “I’ll call nobodies and make them somebodies; I’ll call the unloved and make them beloved.” (Rom. 9:25 MSG). This is His promise; “I have loved you, My people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to Myself.” (Jer. 31:3 NLT). Our love depends on the receiver of the love. Let a thousand people pass before us, and we will not feel the same about each. Our love will 06 | home@b | #15

be regulated by their appearance and by their personalities. Even when we find a few people we like, our feelings will fluctuate. How they treat us will affect how we love them. The receiver regulates our love. Not so with the love of God. We have no thermostatic impact on His love for us. The love of God is born from within Him, not from what He finds in us. His love is uncaused and spontaneous. As Charles Wesley said, “He hath loved us. He hath loved us. Because He would love.”1 Does He love us because of our goodness? Because of our kindness? Because of our great faith? No, He loves us because of His goodness, kindness, and great faith. John says it like this: “This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us” (I John 4:10 NIV). Do you know what else that means? You have a deep well of love from which to draw. When you find it hard to love, then you need a drink! Drink deeply! Drink daily! Don’t forget, love is a fruit. Step into the orchard of God’s work, and what is the first fruit you see? “Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control” (Gal.5:22 NIV). Love is a fruit. A fruit of whom? Of your hard work? Of your deep faith? Of your rigorous resolve? No. Love is a fruit of the Spirit of God. “The Spirit produces the fruit” (Gal.5:22). This is so important, you are a branch on the vine of God. “I am the vine, and you are the branches” (John 15:5). Need a refresher course on how vines function? What is the role of the branch in the bearing of fruit? Branches don’t exert a lot of energy. You never hear of gardeners

treating branches for exhaustion. Branches don’t attend clinics on stress management. Nor do they groan and grunt. “I’ve got to get this grape out. I’ve got to get this grape out. I’m going to bear this grape if it kills me!” No, the branch does none of that. The branch has one job - to receive nourishment from the vine. And you have one job - to receive nourishment from Jesus. “I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you’re joined with Me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant. Separated, you can’t produce a thing” (John 15:5 MSG). Our Lord gets no argument from us on that last line, does he? We have learned the hard way that apart from Him we can’t produce a thing. Don’t you think it’s time we learn what happens if we stay attached? His job is to bear fruit. Our job is to stay put. The more tightly we are attached to Jesus, the more purely his love can pass through us. And oh, what a love it is! Patient. Kind. Does not envy. Does not boast. Is not proud. Let’s rewrite 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 one more time. Not with your name or Jesus’ name but with both. Read it aloud with your name in the blank, and see what you think. Christ in - is patient, Christ in - is kind. Christ in - does not envy, Christ in - does not boast, Christ in - is not proud. Christ in - is not rude, Christ in - is not self-seeking, Christ in - is not easily angered, Christ in keeps no record of wrongs. Christ in - does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. Christ in - always protects, always perseveres. Christ in - never fails. Will we ever love like that? Will we ever love perfectly? No. This side of heaven only God will. But we will love better than we have. By being loved, we will love.


Learning to Live Loved My Prayer For You Where there is pain; I wish you peace and mercy. Where there is selfdoubting, I wish you a renewed confidence in your ability to work through it. Where there is tiredness, or exhaustion, I wish you understanding, patience, and renewed strength.

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MARCH

DATES What’s happening this month? Sundays e@b’s Senior Minister Simon Foster Time: 9.00 & 11.00am. During services Crèche and Champions (children’s church) are available. Time: 9.00am & 11.00am Tuesdays More Sunday expanded, so that you can get More Worship, More Prayer, More Community Time: 7.45pm – 9.30pm Elim Tots It’s a great place for coffee and chat for adults – plus play, reading, crafts and a singsong for toddlers and babies too! (Ages 0 - Reception. Term time only) Time: 10.00am – 11.30am Wednesdays Creative Arts rehearsal Singers, Musicians, Dancers, Drama, Audio Visual & Media Time: 7.30pm – 9.30pm Thursdays Elim Tots (Term time only) Time: 10.00am – 11.30am Young Adults Whether a student, single or married, if you are between the ages of 18 - 30 you will find this is right down your street. Time 8.00pm F.f.i contact: pmillward@elimbristol.org Fridays iD (11-18 year olds) iD is an army of young people who love GOD, love people, live the word and lead people to Christ. Join the revolution… F.f.i contact: Becky Cox 07921314993. Time: 7.30pm

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3rd Saturday of the Month e@b Asian Fellowship Expect the unusual! 
Expect great things from God!
 Expect healing and deliverance! 
Expect a move of God in your life! The e@b Asian Fellowship meets on the 3rd Saturday of the month. F.f.i. contact Fredy Tel: 01179232912 or Mobile 07969499373

Sacred Assembly

Three days of prayer and fasting Sacred Assemblies take place the first Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of each month. We meet at the following times for corporate prayer 7am - 8am, 12 noon - 1pm and 7 to 8pm. Wednesday; corporate worship and prayer - 7.30pm. There is no Sacred Assemblies on STARTS: 1, 2,3 MARCH 2010

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Dr Sharon John ble College in teaches at Elim Bi tours the UK Malvern and she matters and speaking on family aron will be at Sh women’s issues. Dr March 2010, e@b on Sunday 7 9 & 11am services

Coffee House A warm Welcome The Coffee House is a great way for e@b to touch its community, offering Toast, Toasted Sandwiches & Homemade Cakes, served with a warm welcome and it’s all FREE. Wednesdays’ 10.30am - 12.20pm. F.f.i see: Jacquie Bath.

e@b elim@bristol city church 3/15 Jamaica Street, Stokes Croft, Bristol BS2 8JP. T: 0117 923 2847 E: office@elimbristol.org W: www.elimbristol.org APRIL DEADLINE 15th March For enquiries/submissions Please contact: office@elimbristol.org, Ken Planter kplanter@elimbristol.org

Prayer Clinic

day 10th March, Starts on Wednes This is open m. 11.30am - 2.30p prayer on a s nt wa o to anyone wh t come along specific issue - jus

Jen Agu: Jenifer.agu@hotmail.co.uk Also if you would like to help or have a column every month please contact the above.

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