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Thursday 10 August 201There’s a chance to mingle with members of the other congregations at the Whole Church Picnic this coming Sunday (13th). Bring your own lunch – and it’s due to start soon after the end of the 10.45 service at about 12 noon, hopefully in the Trinity Garden if the weather is fine, otherwise in the Trinity Centre.

Last Sunday at SIX30 we continued our new Summer Series on Heroes of the Faith. And Trevor brought us the story of Samson, referring to Judges 15:14-20 and Hebrews 11:1-3.

The key verse in the Hebrews passage is verse 3: ‘….what is seen was not made out of what was visible’. Anarchy reigned during the period when Israel was ruled by the Judges. And Samson was part of the problem. He was an ‘inconvenient truth’ who did nothing to help the situation until God turned things round for him.

We have airbrushed the story of Samson – we think of him as a strong man, albeit a bit odd with long hair. But in fact he was a bad man who nagged his parents, gambled, lied, was cruel to animals, guilty of arson, killed people randomly, used prostitutes, made some terrible choices and was rubbish at keeping secrets. Like Israel he rebelled, but God still loved him – He was faithful to Samson.

What about us? We can be failures but God can use us, just like Samson. Remember:

1. Being a Christian is not about us: it’s about faith in Jesus. God sees the (invisible) potential in us and makes it visible. Jesus chooses us and He forgives us and delivers us from the territory of death into the promise of life.

2. The culture around us is against us. It is not a Godly one. We, like Samson, live in enemy territory but we can speak words of freedom.

3. As we get older we may give up trying, thinking we’ve done our bit. Late on in his life Samson realised that he could still honour God and his people, so regardless of age we must never say we are too old to serve God. God chose us and nothing disqualifies us from serving God. He won’t abandon us.

This coming Sunday at SIX30 we continue the series with Ruth speaking about Jacob.

This evening (Thursday 10th) Stephen and Diki Hawkins will be visiting us with an update on their work with Word for Life Trust.

Lots of things going on in preparation for the Trendlewood Community Festival. If you can help please sign up on the website

Looking ahead:

10 August – Word for Life Trust update

13 August – Summer Whole Church Picnic

26 August – Trendlewood Community Festival

6 September – Prayer Day

9-10 September – Jesus Surf Classic at Croyde

4-25 September – BISC Welcome Events – details from John and Judy Watson

8 October – IGNITE Christians Together Service at Wraxall

15 October – Harvest Festival and Garden Opening – more details soon

From the SIX30