Theme:Christ the King, Who's in charge?
Bible readings: Revelation 1:4-8, John 18:33-37, 2 Samuel 23:1-7
About the photo: Photos of sunsets and sunrises always remind me of the power and reign of God - they are so big and awe inspiring and beautiful. They lift me up but also remind me of my insignificance - a bit like looking at the stars at night. I took this photo out the front of our place VERY early one morning. It is a part of Duck Arm (taken from Banksia Peninsula) in the Gippsland Lakes near Paynesville in Australia - Google any of those place names or look them up on Wikapedia if you are interested in this little bit of the world.
Film clip: Chariots of Fire
Show the clip where Eric Liddell talks with the Prince of Wales en route to the Olympic Games. Eric had a God space in his week that he was not prepared to give up. His allegiance to Jesus and his heavenly kingdom was more important than his allegiance to his King and country (pictured).
Story: The Kingdom of God
story No 363 in 750 Engaging illustrations by Craig Brian Larson and Leadership Journal, Baker books, 2002, ISBN 0801091551 (pictured in an earlier blog)
Sermon Help Notes and Response Activity: Revelation by Song
Can't remember where I got this idea from - maybe out of my head but I am not sure - please let me know via email if you can source it for me.
Give everyone a strip of paper with the words of Revelation I:8 printed across it. Under these words, print three pictures entitled as follows:
Picture 1: a cradle and the words "who is"
Picture 2: a spider and the words "who was"
Picture 3: music notes and the words: "who is to come".
1. The God who Is.
Sing Rock a Bye Baby together. Note that the song does not say "if" but "when the bough breaks". Life is full of surprises - not all of them good - but God is acting and moving in our world. Ask them to talk to the person next to them about how they see God at work in the world today.
2. The God Who Was.
Ask people to sing Ipsy Whipsy Spider together. Note that the song is very like human kind - we repeat our mistakes as nations, as communities, as families and as individuals but we keep plugging away. And "out came the sunshine and dried up all the rain". God repeatedly over history heals, restores, loves and forgives us.
3. The God who is to come
Sing the hymn "Joyful, joyful we adore you" to Beethoven's Ode To Joy. Note that because God is yet to come, the way we live makes a difference.
In verse 6 we are all called to be ministers. Ask people:
In order to be a minister, where do you need God the most: healing your past, with you in your present, or being your future? Fold your strip of paper in three so that the one you need is uppermost and take it home that way.
Listening Song: For the Glory of Your Name
By Michelle Tumes on her album, Heaven and Earth or on WOW 2000 (pictured)