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How to meditate

The Sunday sermon “We need to meditate” had some great advice on how we can meditate on God’s Word.  Here’s the last couple of slides:

 

How to Mediate:

Fill your mind with God’s word (this is unlike what the world calls meditation) & Mutter the Word – Joshua 1 v 8 tells us to keep the word in our mouth / on our lips. Then think about it and reflect upon it.

Ask – How does it affect head, heart, hand?

Make time for deliberate meditation – a time, place, posture, focus/plan.

 

Joel Beeke’s studies on the puritan writings led to his 7 point plan of how to meditate:

  1. pray for the power to focus your mind on the Word with faith.
  2. read the Bible and initially select a verse or two.
  3. memorize – repeat those verses to yourself.
  4. think about what those verses say & imply.
  5. stir affections unto love, desire, grief, hope, zeal, and joy as appropriate. Preach & apply the word to yourself.
  6. do what the text requires, making holy resolutions for the glory of God.
  7. pray for God’s help, give thanks for graces given, and sing praise to God.

 

We could perhaps reduce this to a 3 point plan wrapped in prayer:

  Pray for the power to focus your mind on the Word with faith.

  1. Head – read the Bible and select a verse or two; memorize by muttering; think about what those verses say and imply.
  2. Heart – stir up your affections unto love, desire, grief, hope, zeal, joy, etc – as appropriate.
  3. Hand -arouse your soul to the specific duty which the text requires – holy resolutions for the glory of God. Joshua 1 v 8 also tells us to do what God’s word tells us to do.

 Pray – for divine help, give thanks for graces given, and sing praise to God – Colossians 3 v 16-17.

 

Meditation leads to detachment from sin & attachment to God, and our neighbour.

Ladies Afternoon Tea – Corick House 2016

Afternoon Tea

On Saturday 11th June the ladies from Tartaraghan headed off to Corick House hotel and spa for a spot of afternoon tea! The pinky hold was well perfected as we drank countless cups of tea, nibbled on lots of delights and had a great afternoon of fun and chat. This treat marked the end of our year. We are so thankful for the spiritual growth of ladies in our church, the building of relationships across all ages and the opportunities to learn and share more from His Word.

Planning for next year’s programme is already under way…hope you’ll be able to join us in the new season kicking off in September…

Ladies Afternoon Tea - Corick House 2016

Candlelit Supper 2016

Love was in the air, or should I say ‘Lurve’ was in the air, for our Valentine themed Congregational Candlelit Supper on Thursday 11 February 2016! All ages of our church community enjoyed the excellent meal in a packed hall, bedecked with fairy lights, candles and roses. Thanks to Jonny, Scott, Stephen, Neil, Stephen T and Hannah who provided post dinner ‘Ant & Dec Saturday Night Takeaway’ entertainment. Good craic and banter!

The evening concluded with the choir leading the singing of ‘Sovereign Over Us’ and ‘As the Deer Pants for Water’ and Rev McKelvey sharing some comforting thoughts from Psalm 42.

Psalm 42: 11
Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise Him,
my Saviour and my God.

North Coast Ramble – September

On the 3rd of September some of the folks from the Tartaraghan and Loughgall congregations met at Portballintrae for our ‘North Coast ramble’. This was the starting point for our walk, and our finishing point was at Dunseverick castle. The walk was approximately seven miles in total. 

It was a lovely autumn morning with a fresh breeze blowing. It was great to see some of the younger girls from our congregation coming along for the walk – Mia, Ruby and Holly really seemed to enjoy themselves. They commented on the beauty of the coastline and how they couldn’t understand how some people fail to see that it’s all part of God’s creation.

Two miles into the walk we took up the Giant’s Causeway path along the cliff tops, and as an added bonus we were able to watch the Red Arrows display at the Portrush airshow.

When we reached Dunseverick we had a gourmet picnic-a sandwich and a flask of tea! Sure it’s hard to beat when you have been out walking in the fresh air. 

Before the group departed for home, Norman Cornett shared a short thought with us about how God can use even the small and ordinary things. Things that might seem insignificant, He can take and transform into the extraordinary. In God’s hands the small things can make a big difference, in our Christian walk and in our witness to others. 

 Romans 8v28 (NIV)

“And we know that in All Things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. “

We then closed in prayer. 

When I think back to that day and our wee dander, I just think about the beauty and ruggedness-nature at its best; and I give thanks to our sovereign God, the One who has made it all. 

Thanks go to Robbie Boyce for organising and planning such a great day out.

 

Family @ 4 (May)

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After an Easter break, today was our last Family @ 4 for this year and it was great to see so many people back to enjoy the fun and fellowship. This month’s theme was all about spreading the gospel to the rest of the world. To tie in with this, our craft activities involved making a paper aeroplane, some traffic light biscuits, microphones and drawing ourselves around the world.

Before Jesus left earth to return to heaven, he gave one very short yet explicit command: ‘Go and make followers of all people in the world’ (Matthew 28:19). He didn’t mince his words; he didn’t suggest that the disciples should sit around waiting for people to come and ask them about Jesus. It’s a simple yet challenging command. However, the good news is that Jesus does not expect us to fulfil this command alone. He is with us always, until the very end of time.

As you can see in the picture the microphones and our ‘round the world’ picture looked fabulous and the children enjoyed singing and shouting with them throughout the session. After the craft and bible story we headed for dinner where we all enjoyed some hot dogs and ice cream!

A big thank you to all our volunteers who help out every month at Family @ 4 … from the members of the story team to the people working in the kitchen – we couldn’t do it without you all. So Family @ 4 will be back again in the Autumn – look out on the website for the dates, we look forward to seeing you there!

Family @ 4 (March)

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Last Sunday (3rd March) saw our monthly Family @ 4 gathering at Tartaraghan.  Over 70 people enjoyed a great afternoon of fun and fellowship.  The bible story we focused on this week was Blind Bartimaeus.  (Mark 10: 46 – 52).  Which meant all our craft activities centred around this story which included bandaging with icing, creating funny doctor eggs, painting an almost lifesize ambulance and a Bartimaeus happy and sad face.  Not your normal every day craft I’m sure you’ll agree but all the kids ( and the parents) had great fun even if it was a bit messy!

The story, with our world renowned actors, told how Bartimaeus was not happy with being blind. He believed that Jesus could help him and he persevered in asking Jesus for help. Jesus heals us physically, mentally,emotionally and spiritually, but not always right away. We need to continue to have faith and to persevere in our relationship with him. Jesus opened Bartimaeus’ eyes in more than one way – both physically and spiritually. ‘ I was blind but now I see’ John 9:25.

Following the story and some great singing by everyone we had built up an appetite for dinner – sausages and chips – everyone’s favourite. So all in all a great afternoon was had by all.

Next Family @ 4 session is on Sunday May 10th – we hope to see you there.

Congregational Candlelit Supper

Psalm 107:8-9
Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man! For he satisfies the longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things. 

Lit up with candles, lanterns and fairy lights, our church hall was packed when members of all ages of our church family came together for the Congregational Candlelit Supper on 12th February. Ladies enjoyed being able to leave the Marigolds at home for one night and have high quality food (with a wide variety of choices) served to them; while the men appreciated the ample portions provided by our excellent caterers from The Loft and the kids loved their special menu! The after dinner entertainment involved a lot of craic and banter along a “Getting to know you ” theme featuring TV programmes ‘Who do you think you are?’, ‘Through the Tartaraghan Keyhole’, ‘Small Talk’ and ‘Blind Date’! The evening culminated with a short time of worship – Rev McKelvey spoke briefly on Psalm 107 and the choir led praise with ‘Voice of Hope’ and ‘Behold He Comes’. A great evening!

Irnmen – 11th February 2015

The Irn Men met last Wednesday for another night of worship, learning and fellowship.  Gary Fleming shared his experience about living a Christian life and Philip McMenemy & Neil Cornett led us through the next part of our study in a ‘Gospel Centred Life’.

This month the big idea was that all of mankind seeks to establish their own righteousness, but as Christians our righteousness is found in Jesus. This is one of the great Gospel truths – that we have been set free from the burden of working for our own righteousness and now rest in the perfect righteousness that Christ gave us through His atoning death on the cross. This is part of living a gospel centred life. The night finished with some awesome pulled pork baps (thanks Tanya).  A good night all round.

To find out more information on the Gospel Centred Life, check this out: https://www.whm.org/gcl

Summer Outreach Report Night

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Every summer both Tartaraghan and Loughgall congregations have the joy of seeing many, both young and those ‘not so young’, head off on various short-term mission trips. In September those who have been away take part in a special report service, to share of the work that they have been involved in.  It is always a delight to hear what God has been doing in and through lives around the world.

This year the annual Report Night took place in Tartaraghan. We heard from those who served closer to home in Ireland and from those who traveled further afield to places such as America, Portugal and Romania. Despite the different countries, work and time zones, all went with the same aim: To share the good news of Jesus Christ.

A closing thought was brought by Philip from Psalm 119. One of the verses from the passage speaks of the unfolding of God’s word giving light and understanding to those who are willing to hear the good news of Jesus.

Whether it be overseas or on our doorstep, will you share this good news? That Jesus came, lived, died and rose again – so that through Him we might have life.

What will your mission be?