Welcome to 2009. We are back in the saddle in the Northern hemisphere. An unexpected pleasure for me while in Sydney, Australia, was spending two hours with David Peterson, formerly of Oak Hill College in London, now a staff member at Moore College, Sydney.
Since Wendy and I are in the southern hemisphere until the New Year, I shall not be sending any Christmas cards this year, but I do send my warm and affectionate greetings.
Our extended visit to Australia has provided a great opportunity for first-hand contact with our church plants in this part of the world.
Bob and Mary Cheesman had spent the previous evening with us and stayed the night in our flat. We had been reminiscing about our early years together. Bob had led the Bermondsey church and was one of the early London-based pastors who associated with me before we ever called ourselves Newfrontiers.
Life’s so different here. Haven’t seen the M25 for weeks! To be honest, it’s a great mixture of lots of meetings and opportunities for fellowship and prayer. I have also greatly enjoyed daily working through Mark’s gospel with the aid of James R Edwards and his superb Pillar New Testament commentary.
Greetings from Sydney, Australia where spring is gradually yielding to summer sunshine. Last week Steve Brading and I flew to Brisbane where we were met at the airport by Brian, a member of our Brisbane church plant. He told me a truly fascinating story.
Wendy and I started our recent visit to South Africa with a great weekend at Jubilee Church in Cape Town. On the Friday evening P-J Smyth addressed a youth event underlining the need to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Scores poured forward at the end and many were receiving the Holy Spirit.
Most of you who read this blog will know that Mark Driscoll’s visit to us in the summer was phenomenal and had huge impact upon us. His disarming way and extraordinary spiritual authority came to us at a crucial time in our growth and development.
If you live in England you might be asking, ‘What summer?’ For me it was one of the busiest I can remember. Following our wonderful Together on a Mission conference in Brighton, where Mark Driscoll had such phenomenal impact, I left for France for our Rendezvous Bible Week, closely followed by visits to Montana, Idaho and Oregon, where we enjoyed fellowship in several churches.