Tuesday, July 15, 2008

England Trip #1 - Alder Road Baptist Church, Poole, England

Upon arrival back in the US from Mexico, Linda got busy with laundry and I got busy with issues pertaining to Jubilee Church in St. Louis as well as preparation for our trip to England. We had just a few days to recover and soon found our way on a plane to England for four days in the city of Poole.

Matt Hosier, formerly the leader at New Community Church in London, is now leading Alder Road Baptist Church in Poole. He arranged our early morning transport from Heathrow airport and upon arrival in Poole we enjoyed a short time of meeting our host's home. Alan and Kate made us feel so welcomed and quickly became our new friends. I then hurried off to a meeting with the elders of Alder Road Baptist Church for a time of discussion and questions about many topics of interest. I enjoyed the openness, warmth and quality of questions coming from these wonderful men.

Alan, our host and also an elder, expressed his need for healing at the conclusion of our time together. He had severe pain in the abdomen and had been unable to sleep and eat. In prayer, the pain left and throughout our stay Alan enjoyed his meals and much needed sleep. To say we were off to a good start with evident grace is an understatement.

It is evident that Alder Road Baptist Church has great affection for Matt Hosier and have received his excellent leadership. This is a church with a long history, having begun nearly 75 years ago. They are up for major change and greater connection to all that we are doing in Newfrontiers. I feel that God enabled me to be of assistance in preparation for significant steps forward in what will no doubt be a significant church in the nation.

I had several meetings during the weekend with various leaders from the church, as well as the entire church. Linda and I met in separate gatherings with young men and ladies the first evening of our arrival. We also shared together an evening with couples on the topic of marriage. It was an excellent time, much fun and laughter, and the feedback from the couples present was most gratifying. I felt that God really knit our hearts with this church and we look forward to returning, as Matt has already extended an invitation. The Sunday morning preach went well and at the conclusion their was an evident presence of God as people were deeply moved in preparation for a special offering to extend the building to better handle the growth that is taking place in the church. I look forward to hearing from Matt regarding the offering received.

Linda and I have enjoyed our years of relationship with Matt and Grace as well as New Community Church in London. It is very gratifying to now have a similar relationship with Alder Road Baptist Church in Poole.

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