About this traveller

My photo
London, United Kingdom
Follower of Jesus. Husband. Father. Son. Poet. Writer. Preacher. Story-teller. Learner. Pilgrim.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

blog changed

Well the time has come for transition. Missional Revolution has moved! I can now be found at:


Please feel free to change any settings so thast you don't miss out on up and coming posts - I'll be focusing on:

- Missional living
- Exploring what church means in today's culture
- Prayer on a noisy planet
- The usual devotional things you're used to hearing from me.

I really appreciate that you take time to visit/follow the blog and pray that it continues to be a source of blessing/encouragement/challenge and meaty thought-stirring stuff. you are the reason I blog!

See you at www.missionalrevolution.wordpress.com

With every blessing in Jesus


Friday, November 7, 2008

Missional Revolution

I've always loved the concept of revolution. It inspires me and maintains within me a drive and a desire to keep on pressing forward to see God move in great ways. I'm not sure that I've ever seen the move of God that I dream of. It's a move of repentance.

Revolution and repentance have this in common: They both change something from one system to another. They seek to change people from walking in one direction to turning around. Revolution changes structures and systems; repentance changes hearts and worldviews from the inside out.

The Church in Britain still needs a revolution of repentance. Until we stop and call out to God for His gracious mercy we will continue in decline. We cannot grow as the Church of God while we are not acting like the people of God. While we are loving our structures and our ways more than God and God's ways we cannot grow to be the mission force of Jesus to the world.

I'm not against structure (even the body needs a skeleton) but I'm struggling to see how structure has become our focus. I see some beautiful signs of God's Kingdom coming all around us, but I long for so much more. Don't you?

The Church has lost it's mission to bring the world to Jesus, and Jesus to the world. There is a revolution around us. the missional Church is rising up to take love to the lost, to take hope to the hurting and to take provision to the poor. It's message is powerfully spiritual and practically supplying.

Let us seek the face of God. Let us hear his powerful voice of truth speak into our hearts until we turn back to Him and are turned towards the world again with the power and practicality of the Gospel message.

Friday, October 24, 2008


Church is pretty counter-cultural in a spiritual sense. Althoung we must engage with our culture, we also need to be aware of the spiritual forces and dynamics that drive those cultures. With this in mins it is imperative that we prayerfully engage. God obviously desires to engage culture through the missional thrust of the Church.

We must seek God. We must discern. We must be wise. We must be active. To do all this we must be praying. The Church must be praying - You must pray. I must pray.

Let us devote ourselves to prayer.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Counter Cultural - be an individual

Young and old gather round...

All around us a battle is waging. Many sub cultures surround you, pulling you into their 'life choices' - fashion, music, attitude, character...

Where are you headed? What choices are you making? Your choices mould who you are becoming. What will you become?

Be an individual - you are made in the image of God, and you are made unique. There is only one of you and your life counts for everything! The question is...

...Will you be an individual who chooses for themselves, or will you let yourself be pulled along by whatever somebody else says is'cool'?

It's hard to be yourself sometimes, but take it from me, when you can be yourself you don't need to worry about fitting in anymore; you don't feel the pressure to keep up with everyone else. In fact you may find that people are drawn into your way of living.

I'm not following the crowd that seeks to make me just like them - I'm following Jesus. And d'you know what?

HE WANTS ME TO BE MYSELF - and I'm loving it.

follow Jesus.

love God. Love others.

Live Free!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Church is...3 - loving

If the Church is to love God and love others then the core purpose of Church is to love! Yet, many experience that the Church is not unconditionally loving. Many have experiencved conditional love and exceptance in their experience of Church - this is a diminished view of the love God has called us to live and show. I've heard it said that True love waits, but in this context love does not wait - it just gets on with loving, in thought, word, and ultimately, in deeds.

It needs to be said that there are many floowers of Jesus and Churches that show amazing lives and communities of unconditional love. Yet as people look at the Church in the West this is not the most prominent image of Church seen. We need to be transformed from the heart out into the community.

Look at Jesus lifestyle: He loved the crowds by feeding them with words and with food; he loved the leper by approaching them, talking with them and healing them; he loved women through respecting them; he loved kids by giving them his time; he loved his disciples by disciplining, teaching and releasing them; he loved the world by serving, saving and sacrificing himself; he loved God through obeying him; he loved.

As God's Church we have much repenting to do for our lack of love. We have lacked:

Love for the lost - if we really cared about the lost our perspective would not be so individualistic or insular.
Love for God - we live our faith in our way (it's my life!) rather than in Jesus' way (He is THE Way!)
Love for each other - many churches are filled with people who love others when "they play ball" and fit unspoken rules and expectations.Love for God's word - our words have somehow become more vocal than God's inspired, Spirit-breathed word.

We need to repent. we really need to turn back to God and BE the Church that Jesus died to send into the world. We need to get on our knees and pray that god's mercy touches our hearts afresh. We need to let go of all the 'church' baggage that's got us bound up and be freed to follow Jesus as unconditional lovers of God who unconditionally love ALL people, even when they are different, wrong, right, or down-right strange.

Follow Jesus - Love God - Love others - with no conditions

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Stop and think - participation

Very quickly... how much participation do we allow God in our lives? Is he at the core of life walking with us? Are we expecting him to 'catch up' with what we're doing?

God wants to play a BIG part, not a BIT part.
God wants full control, not just a little permission to move when I want.
God wants to give us HIS dreams for our lives, not just bless OUR dreams.

It's easy for us to sing and pray "Lord, I give you my heart, I give you my soul, I live for you alone" - much harder to live that out. We need God's help if that is our heart-cry. We can't 'go it alone.

May God's participation in our lives be absolute. M\y be be Saviour AND Lord. And may we participate in the fulness of relationship with him.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

book: Youth ministry on your knees (Mike Higgs)

I wanted to recommend this book for it's simplicity and accessability to youth workers short of time for a weighty read - definately not weighhty, but it covers excellent ground.

It starts with the character and person of the youth worker. Your ministry will go as far as your prayer life. we expect God to bless us, without giving him his rightful place at the head of our ministries. He moves on to the issue of purity - living a clean life before God without falling into wrong patterns of living.

This book is also really practical in terms of creating a praying culture amongst young people, and the lastter part of the book focussed on mobilising young people to pray.

I know I've been challenged by this book and have just begun reading it through a second time. Enjoy it when you buy it.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Book: Youth Leaders who last (Tim Hawkins)

I had to recommend this book for a few reasons:

1. youth leaders burnout, run away, quit, grow out of it, move 'up' the chain of command faster than I can get a burger in a fast-food joint! Youth leaders don't last - there's a culture of 'transient youth leadership' where leaders don't keep going. this makes it hard for young people to trust new leaders. I bel;ieve god wants people in youth ministry who have the heart and mettle to go for the long haul.

2. It's a brilliant book filled with biblical truths that will grow persevering youth leaders.

3. It's a good read!

The book looks at the following:

Section 1: Grow your Leadership Vision
1. Your are Called by God
2. You are a Generation-Changer
3. You are a Shepherd
4. Three Relationships of a Shepherd
5. Three Tasks of a Shepherd
6. You are a Servant
7. Ten marks of a Servant

Section 2: Grow your Leadership Character
8. You are Developing Your Character
9. You are Faithful
10. You are Reliable
11. You are a Follower
12. You have a Biblical Standard
13. Eight Checkpoints for a Biblical Leader

Section 3: Grow your Leadership Skills
14. You are a Bible Teacher
15. You are a Small Group Leader
16. You are Many, Many People
17. You are a Leader who will Last

Section 4: Appendix
1. Biblical Leadership Lists
2. Above Reproach
3. For Further Reading

i love that Hawkins has a good section on the heart of a youth leader - what you are on the inside will affect the ministry you do, and will eventually manifest itself on the outside.

as youth leaders we share Jesus, but we also share ourselves (our lives) with young people we are discipling.

On the whole - a great read (in fact i've read this book numerous times now!!

Church is...2

I have wanted to write about 'Church' for a while. Perhaps I've nothing new to offer, but at a time when there's much buzz about what Churchis not, and should not be, I wanted to put down my thoughts on what Church is. So here's the first installment.

Church is a community of believers
I love that community is a facet of current discussions on ecclesiology. we all know that Church is meant to be community, but I believe that this has to be more than 2 or 3 people gathering together in a pub and talking about Jesus (admit it...anybody can do that!). Church is a community OF BELIEVERS - people that love God and have a living faith in the saving power and person of Jesus Christ. Their belief is founded upon him; he's at the centre of it all; they live to please Jesus; they emmulate lives that resemble, copy and mimic the life of Christ.

Church is a community - a people with a common unity: they are lovers of God and lovers of people. They share common purpose: to glorify God through living lives that are lived as worship to Him; to 'make disciples' (not just get converts); to teach Jesus' way of living and being; to live out the great commandment and the great commission.

Belief is based on:

1. the teachings of Christ
2. The work of Christ
3. The authority of the Bible

I had a lecturer that talked about 'faith in faith' - faith in nothing really! Our faith has the basis of God's revelation of himself to us in scripture. Our belief needs to be placed alongside the 'plumbline of scripture'. If our belief is at odds with God's word then we have been deluded and deceived. When we stand on scripture our foundation cannot be removed. god is not a man that he should lie. His word is truth. we may not understand it; we may not even agree with it; we may struggle with aspects of it, but in the end it is still the word of God.

Any 'church' that does not hold fast to the authority of the bible is not the Church of Christ, regardless of what it names itself.

Our world is crying out for Churches that will shine the light of truth in the darkness - God has given the church his written word (your word is a 'light for my path - psalm 119), and he has given the church to the world to show the way to God.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Fransiscan Prayer

I'm not a massive fan of written prayers that become 'rote' prayers, but this one is one that i will learn and pray from my heart. It's a 'Fransiscan Benediction':

May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers,
half truths, and superficial relationships,
so that you may live deep within your heart.

May God bless you with anger at injustice,
oppression, and exploitation of people,
so that you may work for justice, freedom and peace.

May God bless you with tears to shed for those who
suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, and war,
so that you may reach out your hand
to comfort them and to turn their pain in to joy.

And may God bless you with enough foolishness
to believe that you can make a difference in this world,
so that you can do what others claim cannot be done.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Church 1

Church - what is it? What is it not? Loads of us are asking these questions. Is it missional? Is it simple, organic or institutional?

It strikes me that our 'ecclesiology' (study of the church) focusses on what church is when we gather and I wonder if we have formed an incomplete ecclesiology. I have become unsettled with Church because it generally focusses on Sunday gatherings. Church employees are encouraged to put energy into Sunday activities most of the time. Yes, we have midweek endeavours - youth groups, clubs, cells. It strikes me that if we are to be followers of Jesus then 'The Church' needs to focus on Making Disciples - I believe that this should be through shared experiences of doing life together: meals; laughter, worship, talking, friendships that exceed superficial christian nicities, etc. Jesus spent time with his followers - they saw his struggles and his joys and they learned from how he handled life's complexities.

Maybe our ecclesiology needs to incorperate 'living lives together'?

More later

Monday, September 15, 2008

Reformission Rev

I've Just finished reading "Confessions of a reformission Rev" by Mark Driscoll. I must say that it's the most challenging and inspiring book I've read for a while. therefore you must stop now and do the following:

1. Rush off to the nearest book store
2. Buy it!
3. Read it!
4. Chew on it (think about what it's saying)
4. Apply it to your situation

Mark shows us his own journey of leading a ministry, highlighting very effectively the effect theology has on growing a biblically baded ministry.

I was particularly challenged about working through my own Christology, ecclesiology and missiology (look them up in a good dictionary if I've used big words) and felt a groqing thirst to study scripture even more. Mark's passion for the bible oozes out of every page, and while I might not agree with 100% of his views I felt inspired and encouraged to make disciples from a biblical foundation rather than from a 'consumerist' model of Church.

This book is probably aimed at Church leaders but is written in a very accessable style for all christians, and I'd recommend it very highly.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Abuse: Broken Vessels

A friend of mine made something really amazing. He took some dust from the ground and began to create the most amazing work of art. He worked tirelessly, devoting both time and energy to his creation. The dust took form as the day passed and it wasn’t long before the creation was completed. It really was quite remarkable – the finest creation my friend had ever made. He was extremely proud of it. That creation was you!

You were created by God to be perfect in every way. Each of us has been made by God and he is very proud of us. When He made you he looked at the perfect finished product and he said “It is very good”. I’m sure that God smiled over you when you were born.

Each of us has been hurt by aspects of life. The abuse victim knows hurt at a very deep level. We come to God weak, with hearts full of hurt and tears. We come to him with our insecurities and with our shame. We wonder if he can ever make us whole again.

Here is the truth about God. The Bible teaches that God is loving and full of grace. He is slow to be angry and very quick to love you. He wants you to come to him with every hurt and pain, with every wrong ever done by you or to you, and he wants to make you like him once more. You were created in God’s image and that image can be restored again.

The Bible shows us that that God began a good work in you and that He will work in you until that work is complete. You can take hope in the fact that God will heal and restore you to be made whole from the hurts of abuse and life. It may take time and it may take a lot of work, but the possibility of a restored life makes it all worthwhile. There is hope after the storm. There is fullness of life after the experience of abuse when we invite God in to heal us. Shall we pray together?

Loving God, thank you for accepting us and restoring us to be all we are meant to be – made in your likeness. Heal our hurts. Show us the light of your love in dark situations, and help us to be like you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Abuse: Why?

Have you ever observed a young child enquiring about something that interests them? The conversation may go something like this:

Dad, what’s that?
It’s a hairdryer for Mum to have dry hair?
Why does Mum want dry hair?
She’ll catch a cold if it’s wet.
Because it’s cold outside.
Because it’s been raining.
Because it always rains in April.
It just does.

This can go on for hours until either Dad gets annoyed or child loses interest. Often it’s because Dad gets annoyed and then the child is left feeling like they’ve done something wrong. I’m sure you will agree that the child has done nothing wrong in this situation - He has just exercised his right to be inquisitive about something. Yet often when children ask ‘why?’ in this manner they are treated like they are in the wrong. Granted it can be annoying, but they are not wrong.

We are like the child sometimes. When things in life go wrong we look to heaven and ask why. We have seen this recently with the Tsunami. Many who have gone through abuse daily question “why?”
The abuse victim asks why they were abused, and why did God allow it to happen. A parent or guardian of an abused child may be asking why they were unable to see the signs of abuse as it occurred. In reality there are often no answers to these questions, but there is comfort in God who helps us through our hurts.

It is not wrong to ask “Why?” As God’s children we have the right to ask big questions. It is encouraging to remember that God has boundless amounts of love and patience for us, his children. He will not scold us for asking hard questions, but he will love us and carry us through when we cannot understand. As well as asking why we can also ask for help.

Let us turn to God for strength today.

Loving God, thank you that you never stop us from trying to find answers to lives hard questions. Thank you for accepting us just as we are. Help us to remember that one day everything will make sense and all pain will cease. Help us to keep looking to you for the strength, help, and the healing our lives need. Amen.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Abuse: Fear

Can you remember a time when you felt so afraid you were frozen to the spot? Perhaps you were waiting in the queue for a thrill ride. Perhaps you were about to make an important presentation or speech. Fear is no stranger to us and it is no respecter of people. At some point we all feel afraid.

For some people life is lived in fear. Those who have been abused know the reality of fear. Imagine living every day in fear of an individual who had hurt and tormented you. Even now, years later, the very mention of their name may strike fear into you. We wonder, ‘how can I ever escape these fears and these memories?’

Now imagine living a life without fear. It is a life where the memory of abuse does not haunt you and you are free to be what God created you to be. For many this life is never a reality, but there is hope through God’s grace.

My wife used to have nightmares frequently. She would awaken in the night screaming in fear. She was so afraid that she thought the object of her fears was in the room with her. Each time I would hold her and speak gently to calm her down. As she relaxed I would tell her ‘It’s okay I’m here and I love you.’

God can help us overcome fear in a similar way. Today, your heart may be heavy with various worries and fears about the future. God is saying “It’s okay, I’m here with you and I love you”. For others, your experience of abuse has meant that life has been one big experience in fear. God calls to your heart today to give you hope and peace. When you have gone through your struggles God has seen and he has wept with you. Today He opens his arms of love to you and says “It’s okay, I’m here and I love you”.

The Bible has much to say about love and God. Perhaps the most important things we can hear today are that ‘perfect love casts out fear’ and that ‘God is love’. God will never force his way into our lives - He’s the perfect gentleman who waits for an invite. As the presence of God’s Spirit fills our hearts we can be transformed by his love. As we pray today why not invite God to reveal his love afresh to you.

We now pray,

‘Lord, we thank you that you want our hearts to be free from fear and filled with your love. Help us to know and live in this perfect love through the indwelling power and voice of your Holy Spirit bringing perfect peace. Amen.’