The calm before the storm. Still in planning mode. Nothing directly AP4L happening today. The events kick off tomorrow.
The day started with staff meeting at 9.15am. The three of us (Administrator, Assistant and me) meet weekly to review what’s happened the previous week and to plan what’s up and coming. As expected the week’s events loomed large in our discussions. Managed to shift everything onto the Assistant’s plate so that I can concentrate on two talks for Sunday. He’s better at getting things done than I am and I’m more experienced as a speaker; so we work well as a team!
One of the frustrations of church ministry in our urban setting is how little time we actually spend with the people we want to influence; namely the congregation! We see them on a Sunday and most of that we’re not actually talking. I’m talking and they might be listening or we’re singing, or we’re praying. All good stuff, but the face to face ‘ground war’ hand to hand combat ministry of encouraging, challenging, rebuking and training happens so infrequently. Sometimes we’ll see them midweek at Knowing God but that’s the Assistant’s bag and I’m not there. But if people are away they don’t get to hear what we say and we don’t get to see them for a week or two. Lots can happen in that time. Decisions can be taken, mistakes can be made and opportunities missed. Church ought to be a time of seeing people but often I emerge frustrated at who’s not there! I can almost guarantee that if I have an important announcement to make the people who most need to hear it will be away. I have no idea why the Lord arranges it that way. Probably to humble me because what I have to say isn’t that important in the grand scheme of things. Or perhaps to protect them from my over zealous exhortations!
And so e-mails have become a way of trying to get information out and gain influence. But unlike a conversation they quickly become part of the background noise. I get between 50-100 e-mails a day and I suspect others get loads more. It’s very easy for our e-mail about church events or whatever to be lost in the melee of the inbox. Anyway, we planned a notice to go out to the blokes to encourage them to come along to the curry night. The Women’s International Evening of International Cuisine for Internationals of all International Nations is sold out. Go girls! Much rejoicing over a full house. The lads have been slower to respond.
After the church staff meeting I have a weekly family staff meeting with Rosslyn. We meet at Bertie & Boo’s in Balham for a flat white. The diaries are opened and we make sure we know who’s doing what in the week and month ahead. We went over who’s been invited to which events, who’s accepted and who’s rejected. It’s rarely the people we thought would respond positively that do. But the Lord is king. There were a couple of interested responses out of left field from time in the school playgroud but as the day panned out they fizzled away. Pants.
Spoke with the boys at Quirky who are putting the ‘finishing’ touches to the animation for Saturday night. The evening is entitled ‘Why bother with Jesus?’ They’d sent me three scenarios of why some things are worth bothering with and why some things aren’t. Each were brilliant. We could have all of them. I’m still hopeful. But I’m not the one producing them. And the person who is said that having one by Saturday is realistic. But I live in hope!
We got our man; a member of our congregation who’s a recently converted British Hindu who works as a Doctor. He clearly thinks Jesus is worth bothering with and so I’m looking forward to hearing what he says when I interview him and ask him to give us his testimony.
Listened to the music for Saturday night so that I could get a flavour of what was being played. Spoke to Colin and firmed up the details of what’s being sung and when. Realised that the celtic version of ‘When I Survey’ is enjoyably more upbeat than the traditional version. And approved it’s use!
Worked on the Saturday night schedule so that we know what’s happening, when. Blogged to try and keep local spirits up with news of what’s going on and to keep myself accountable for what’s happening in my own life this week.
Had a long chat with Al Stewart who’s speaking for us at the men’s curry night and on saturday. He is wonderful. He’s so easy to work with. There’s no agenda except helping us to help others hear about Christ. We finalised which passages he was going to speak on. He wanted to know who was going to be there, what they were like and so on. He spend last week speaking in central London and had one gig at the Royal Opera House. I painted a picture of Chestnut Grove School that I think has managed his expectations!
In the evening Rosslyn and I went to the Royal Festival Hall to watch Rufus sing as part of the Telferscot School Choir. They did a great job as one of only half a dozen or so schools in Lambeth who were invited to take part. He’ll be in pieces today because he didn’t get to bed till almost half ten.I looked for opportunities to chat to the other parenst from school but it’s bad form when anoither school are playing! Chances to advertise AP4L were limited. But it’s all good relationship forming stuff and so it’s never wasted. Had a glass of red, saw the first few overs of the IPL and then went to bed.
Wierd day. It’s AP4L week but it doesn’t feel like it yet.