Archive for December, 2008

Well here we are again – another year has been and gone and what a year it has been! 

For me personally it has had many ups and downs, but the last part of the year has certainly been good to me.  At the beginning of 2008 I really didn’t feel I had much to look forward to at all, what with my health problems and low self esteem issues, I really couldn’t see what there was to look forward too.  

And here I am looking back and I have to say that 2008 really wasn’t that bad after all.  I have come off my anti depressants.   I have stopped having my drips which means no overnight stays in hospital for the foreseeable future (OK it is just suck it and see at the moment but we keep on praying).  We have had a very busy but successful centenary year at church and then the best bit of course is that I have found someone who loves me for who and what I am, warts and all as they say!  I was always being told that Jesus  loved me unconditionally no matter what I did or didn’t do but although I know that is what it says in the bible I struggled to understand it.  Having found someone like the church mouse who loves me I can now grasp what it is to have someone love me completely.

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a blessed and happy new year.


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A member of our Church, called Bernadette, has a special ministry amongst the Chinese community in this country and was walking through the centre of  Preston when she saw a Chinese girl who was looking lost.  She approached the girl in order to invite her to join a local Christian fellowship and asked the girl what she was doing.  The girl said that she had just arrived in the UK but had been a member of a Church in China.  Her pastor in China had told her that when she arrived in Preston the first person she should seek out was a lady by the name of Bernadette.  I would go so far as to say that God had directed that meeting.  God can direct the path of any of us if we allow Him.

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We went to the local hospice carol singing just before Christmas and we were invited by the hospice chaplain to sing in the corridors outside the rooms of those residents who agreed to this.  We sang for almost an hour and we were invited into one of the rooms which was being shared by two residents.  After we had completed our singing we were invited to share in tea and mince pies and the chaplain told us that the two people into whose room we had been invited had requested not to have the chaplain visit them during their time in the hospice and so the fact that we had sung to them was going to create an opportunity for the chaplain to speak to them further.  One never can tell what the singing of a simple carol can do.

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I thought I had better share my thoughts about how me and the church mouse got together after knowing each other for many years.
I guess for me it started about a year or two ago when I thought that the church mouse was interested in me and I was definitely not interested in him at the time.  He is a similar age to my father and therefore it wasn’t even something I had considered and so I decided it was best if I let him down gently and asked him to back off!

He did and things carried on normally for the next couple of years but after the service each Sunday night we were both hanging back to stay and natter to one another.  This continued and it ended up with us both sharing personal problems and also enjoying general chit chat.

Then Holiday Bible Club (HBC) happened and for the 2 weeks previously we were both down at church getting things ready.  Then it was the week of HBC and of course we spent most mornings and some afternoons together and then as we both didn’t work we were the ones that for 2 weeks after HBC spent time cleaning and tidying up the church rooms.  I had noticed that I enjoyed our time together but didn’t think anything of it.  At the time I blogged about my thoughts on the time we had shared together.  Of course what I haven’t mentioned is the many emails that were flying between us each day – it must have been at least 20 a day.

Then came August Bank Holiday and an email came through with The Church Mouses feelings about me…He loved me.  As regular readers know I have struggled with myself esteem and felt that I was unlovable.  THE email certainly proved me wrong but my initial reaction was aaaaaaaaahhhhhhh! so I replied with a quick message – just having a panic but will get my head together and reply later.

It was then that I realised that I had been waiting for the emails each day and got worried if one didn’t arrive.  I realised that I purposefully waited after each service because I wanted to be alone with him.  I realised that actually I did have some feelings for the church mouse but whether that was love, I was unsure.  So sent an email explaining how I felt.

There were some issues we needed to work out like the age difference and our positions in the church etc but I have to say that those people we spoke too were really happy for us and not one person has had anything negative to say.

So here we are – enjoying ourselves, having fun together and enjoying sharing our first Christmas together as a couple.

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The reality of Jesus

It is good to have a comment from ConcernedAbout challenging my faith in the reality of Jesus.  The existence of Jesus as a historical figure is documented in various historical accounts of the period such as Josephus.  What cannot be proved is Jesus’ claim to be the son of God.  I have chosen to believe this to be true and that Jesus died to save my sins.  I therefore consider myself to be a Christian.  If others, having heard the Gospel message choose to reject it then I have no problem at all with that.   I would just ask that they respect other peoples right to hold a different view.  ConcernedAbout states in another blog that he hoped that religion would have been largely marginalised in the 21st century but admits that “sadly this is not so”.  I can say with confidence that the Word of God and it’s power to change lives will never be weakened by mankind’s rejection of it.  Perhaps ConcernedAbout need not feel threatened because whether he turns out to be right or wrong he will not have to meet any Christians in the afterlife.

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The figure of Jesus in the manger was missing from our outdoor Nativity Scene when I arrived at Church this morning.  I had actually noticed that it had gone yesterday afternoon.  When I explained to members of our congregation they were rather shocked that anyone would do such a thing but I promised to look through the CCTV footage and print a large photo of the thief for display on the Church notice board.  Of course, if King Herod had been successful in his mission then the baby Jesus would indeed have been missing from the Nativity scene but that was not part of God’s plan.

While a group of us were pondering on what anyone would do with the plywood image of the manger some very kind neighbours who had been walking their dog on the local park returned it to us, having recognised it in the grass.  It is reassuring to know that there are still those who want to |keep Jesus at the centre of Christmas. 

Have you done a good turn for someone this Christmas?  If you have then maybe you were doing it for Christ without realising.

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Falling in love

I had sometimes wondered if I would ever meet the right girl but it wasn’t something which troubled me in any way.  I was satisfied with life and was content to remain single if the right girl never came my way.  As the years passed by I did occasionally wonder how I would know if I met the right girl and what would my ideal person be like.  Knowing full well that true love is blind to these sort of lists I started to think of factors which would be important to me.  I considered that an essential requirement would be that she should be a Christian, and ideally a Methodist.  Being that I am tee-total and have strong views on the subject of alcohol it seemed that she would need to be a non-drinker.  It also seemed important that she could share at least some of my interests, which include singing and music.  She would need to be at least reasonably capable as far as practical skills are concerned, with enough intelligence to be able to appreciate the finer points of DIY.  Then (and this is perhaps a bit selfish on my part) it would be very helpful if she lived nearby, preferably in New Longton.

When I looked through my list of requirements I began to realise why I was still single.  Was it remotely possible that my ideal girl even existed?

Then I realised that in our own congregation was a girl who met every one of my criteria and amazingly I was beginning to find her rather attractive.  Was God trying to tell me something. 

I had always considered that I would spend the rest of my days as a bachelor and was quite happy with that thought but I am now having to take on board the idea that this may not be the case.  I really have no idea what the future will hold and am happy to allow events to take their course but at this stage I am in a happy relationship with my new-found friend and I hope it continues long into the future.

All this has meant that blogging has taken a lower order of priority and in addition to this we have had all the preparations for our Church Centenary events.  The Church Mouse has not been idle and thanks to the help and support of my very able girlfriend (itsme999player) we have managed to keep the website going but it is hoped that the New Year will bring with it a bit more spare time (is this wishful thinking) and allow me to entertain you all with a few more blogs.

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