19th October 2017
As part of our commitment to continuing to invest in our relationship, Deb and I decided some time ago to read a book on marriage together each summer. This year we excelled ourselves and read two! While our boys were serving at Newday, we took the opportunity to escape to the South of France where the weather and scenery provided the perfect context to discuss over meals some of the interesting issues raised by our reading.
The first book we read was Making Marriage Beautiful by Dorothy Little Greco. Unlike many marriage books we have come across, this one is written by a woman, with input and testimony from her husband, and gives a slightly different angle to some of the subjects that are often covered in Christian marriage books. She takes a similar approach to Tim and Kathy Keller in their classic The Meaning of Marriage, being less of a practical ‘how to’ manual and more of a challenge to consider underlying attitudes and character. The chapters on handling conflict and the influence of your upbringing were particularly helpful. We had some fascinating and extremely helpful discussions while reading this very well written book and would definitely recommend it.
Douglas Rosenau is the author of Celebration of Sex, the ‘must have’ book on intimacy in Christian marriage – it is one we recommend to all married couples at King’s. So when I saw that he has written another book, Total Intimacy, I ordered it immediately. This shorter book on romance looks at the subject of marital intimacy from different angles. It stresses the importance of friendship and emotional connection as well as sexual love. This is more of a ‘how to’ book and again led to some very good discussions for Deb and I – another one to add to your reading list.
You don’t have to go to the South of France to spend time reading and investing in your marriage – although if you can, I highly recommend it as a romantic place to visit! But I would encourage all of you who are married to be intentional about building a great relationship – read a book together, make time and space to discuss it and act on what you learn!
Posted by Steve Tibbert
12th October 2017
On our day off last Monday, Deb and I visited one of our local London parks. As we walked through fallen leaves on what was a fairly damp and misty afternoon, there was no doubt that autumn has arrived. The last six weeks seem to have flown by and it is hard to believe that we are already in October.
For the first part of this new church year, the main focus for my leadership has been on my local church where I love to serve. Despite occasional time given to my wider Newfrontiers responsibilities, the majority of my days have been spent leading and building King’s. Vision Sunday, when we announced our plans to launch a fourth site in September 2018, was followed by a week of prayer and another excellent week of input from our friends Steve and Cindy Nicholson from Evanston Vineyard in Chicago. It has been a busy but exciting time.
As I look ahead to next week, I feel as if I will be taking off one hat and putting on another. For the next six weeks my focus will shift towards my Newfrontiers responsibilities, beginning on Monday with the Global 17 gathering of Newfrontiers international apostles in Athens. Deb and I are very much looking forward to meeting up with friends and co-workers from around the world at this annual leadership conference. It is always an encouraging and challenging time and we love to hear news of all that God is doing in the wider Newfrontiers family. Global 17 will be quickly followed by our attendance at The Richmond Group, a gathering of UK church leaders hosted by Nicky Gumbel. We then have a few weeks back at home base before another oversees trip in November, this time to River of Life Church in Harare, Zimbabwe and Jubilee Church in Cape Town, South Africa.
Although it does feel as if I wear two different hats at times, switching between my local role and my wider one, I count it a privilege and joy to be able to serve God in this way. Deb and I would greatly value your prayers over the coming weeks, as we travel to Global17, The Richmond Group and then down to southern Africa.
Posted by Steve Tibbert
5th October 2017
‘Rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn.’
King’s Church is a family of people aiming to serve God in our communities here in London. Our church is urban, diverse and growing. Over the last few months we have seen many people step toward us looking for a home, a family and friendship – we have much to be encouraged about. We can rejoice at the joy of spiritual birth, as people regularly profess faith for the first time or give testimony in baptism. We are moving forward with plans to expand and launch a new site. We can see God at work: our kids’ work is bursting at the seams, our youth work is thriving and there are many stories of God’s favour on people’s lives.
However, woven into the fabric of our journey there are often seasons of both joy and sorrow and this has certainly been the case these last few weeks. Whilst rejoicing in all that God is doing, we are also grieving for loved ones lost. At our Catford site on Sunday, we shared the shocking news that the younger brother of one of our key musicians had been murdered. Sadly, crimes such as this happen all too frequently on the streets we call home, and have once again come close to our church community. We stand with this family in prayer as they walk through this tragic event together. This was followed by the news that our friend Ben Arnold, a former member here and an elder at Beacon Church, which was planted out from King’s a decade ago, has died from cancer. Ben was a faithful and generous man, a great encourager of others and always ready with a smile. We mourn his loss, which has come far too soon, and we pray for his wife Emma and their two teenage children, Hannah and James.
So as I prayed for the King’s family this morning, I found myself both rejoicing and mourning. We rejoice because our God saves and ultimately, even in death, He reigns. But we also mourn for the untimely loss of those we love. My prayer for all of us, whatever season of life we may be in at the moment, is that we would each know the comfort of God, so that we can bring comfort to one another.
‘Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.’
2 Corinthians 1:3-4
Posted by Steve Tibbert
28th September 2017
I am so excited about our new teaching series for this term, We Believe. We have given it the subtitle Foundations for a Resilient Faith and over the next eight weeks we will be exploring the core convictions held by Christians, those things we believe the Bible says which are central to our faith and which we are not prepared to move on.
Andrew Wilson got us off to a brilliant start last Sunday with an introduction to the series. If you missed it, I highly recommend catching up here. We Believe will be based around the Nicene Creed, a document produced in the Fourth Century which set out what Christians believe. Some 1700 years later, these foundational beliefs, these pillars of our faith, remain unchanged and are still held by all Christians everywhere.
The series will consider eight of the core Christian beliefs, such as what we believe about God, Jesus and the resurrection. As we look more deeply at each of these foundations, my hope and prayer is that each of us will develop a stronger, deeper, more robust faith. Have a look below at this brief introduction video about the series to find out more.
As I said on Vision Sunday a few weeks ago, our emphasis at King’s this year is on discipleship, and We Believe presents a great opportunity to grow in our understanding and knowledge of God. As well as coming on Sundays, I would also encourage you to join a group, many of which will be following the series. And if you’re still exploring Christianity, or are new to the faith, why not consider joining Alpha, a great place to ask all those big questions you may have.
I look forward to seeing you on Sunday.
Posted by Steve Tibbert
Steve Tibbert leads King’s Church London, with sites in Catford, Downham and Lee. Over the past fifteen years the church has seen continued growth, both in size and diversity. Steve is also involved in Newfrontiers and regularly coaches other lead elders. His book, Good to Grow, was published in July 2011. He is married to Deb, and they have three sons.