Remembering with Spurgeon

This came up in my prayermate app today… a timely reminder for me from Spurgeon – how about you?

Thought for the morning of Wed April 26, 2017
Verse: “This do in remembrance of me.”— 1co 11:24

It seems then, that Christians may forget Christ! There could be no need for this loving exhortation, if there were not a fearful supposition that our memories might prove treacherous. Nor is this a bare supposition: it is, alas! too well confirmed in our experience, not as a possibility, but as a lamentable fact. It appears almost impossible that those who have been redeemed by the blood of the dying Lamb, and loved with an everlasting love by the eternal Son of God, should forget that gracious Saviour; but, if startling to the ear, it is, alas! too apparent to the eye to allow us to deny the crime. Forget him who never forgot us! Forget him who poured his blood forth for our sins! Forget him who loved us even to the death! Can it be possible? Yes, it is not only possible, but conscience confesses that it is too sadly a fault with all of us, that we suffer him to be as a wayfaring man tarrying but for a night. He whom we should make the abiding tenant of our memories is but a visitor therein. The cross where one would think that memory would linger, and unmindfulness would be an unknown intruder, is desecrated by the feet of forgetfulness. Does not your conscience say that this is true? Do you not find yourselves forgetful of Jesus? Some creature steals away your heart, and you are unmindful of him upon whom your affection ought to be set. Some earthly business engrosses your attention when you should fix your eye steadily upon the cross. It is the incessant turmoil of the world, the constant attraction of earthly things which takes away the soul from Christ. While memory too well preserves a poisonous weed, it suffereth the rose of Sharon to wither. Let us charge ourselves to bind a heavenly forget-me-not about our hearts for Jesus our Beloved, and, whatever else we let slip, let us hold fast to him.

— Chris

Hallelujah! What a Saviour


Today I visited a church in Melbourne as I had been invited to preach. I must say it was so nice to be at church today. Not just because I got to preach. And not just because we heard great things from God’s Word about his grace in Christ Jesus. And not only because I got to meet some great and godly new brothers and sisters. And not simply because I got to see some old friends I haven’t seen for a while.

Today I was really struck as we sang together. I often find myself reflecting on the songs we sing. They have a way of getting in my head… and staying there… sometimes all week. Just ask my kids as I hum and sing badly for the week ahead. Songs have a way of staying with us.

Today we sang a song that I don’t remember singing before. I almost can’t believe that to be true. Because it’s an old song [google tells me from 1875 by Philip B. Bliss]. And it’s a good song. I’m sure I’ve come across it before but today its words really impacted me at the time and have remained with me. They struck me as deeply and profoundly good words to sing.

Here are the lyrics. Accompanied only by an acoustic guitar and 2 clear [and beautiful] voices we sang,

  1. “Man of Sorrows!” what a name
    For the Son of God, who came
    Ruined sinners to reclaim.
    Hallelujah! What a Savior!
  2. Bearing shame and scoffing rude,
    In my place condemned He stood;
    Sealed my pardon with His blood.
    Hallelujah! What a Savior!
  3. Guilty, vile, and helpless we;
    Spotless Lamb of God was He;
    “Full atonement!” can it be?
    Hallelujah! What a Savior!
  4. Lifted up was He to die;
    “It is finished!” was His cry;
    Now in Heav’n exalted high.
    Hallelujah! What a Savior!
  5. When He comes, our glorious King,
    All His ransomed home to bring,
    Then anew His song we’ll sing:
    Hallelujah! What a Savior!

Hallelujah what a Saviour indeed!!

— Chris

2 Weddings + 2000kms = Great times!

We had a great weekend visiting friends and families. We drove a lot. We talked a lot. We celebrated weddings a lot. It really was a great time for us as a family together.

Today is our wedding anniversary and it was really nice to be reminded of the vows we made 9 years ago. We give thanks to God for his goodness to us over the past 9 years of married life and for his great care of us as we travelled to Sydney last weekend.


Here’s a photo from 9 years ago when we made our vows.

We continue to enjoy our time studying here and we were reminded how quickly this time is passing us by. We’ll return next to Sydney in late June for 6 months of visiting our link churches.

— Chris


I’m sorry.

IMG_1935.JPG“I’m sorry ok?”

“I’m sorry if anything I said hurt your feelings.”

“I regret my poor choice of words, but…”

Ugh how bad are bad apologies?! They’re the pits! Rather than being the means of confessing our wrongs, bad apologies become carefully crafted means of blame-shifting, side-stepping and self-justification. But how often do we use these dodgy “apologies”, telling ourselves (and others) that we’ve done our part?

I want to share some gold from the Resolving Everyday Conflict course (Peacemaker Ministries). Today we explored how to make a good apology. It might seem simple, but good apologies are rare. Unfortunately we often excuse, minimise or even deny that any wrong was done. We rarely ask for forgiveness. Yet confession, forgiveness and reconciliation are at the heart of the gospel and should be the bread and butter of Christian living.

So what are the elements of a good apology? These are the 7 A’s taken directly from the Resolving Everyday Conflict booklet:

ADDRESS everyone involved. It’s time to acknowledge and apologise to everyone involved. Not only the person you argued with with, but others who were embroiled directly or through gossip.

AVOID ifs and buts. With these words we let ourselves off the hook and even shift the blame to the victim. No!

ADMIT specifically. Instead of hiding behind vagueness, let’s be honest with God, ourselves and others. Let’s apologise for our actions and the sinful attitudes behind them.

ACKNOWLEDGE the hurt. We need to show that we understand and care that we’ve hurt someone.

ACCEPT the consequences. If we are truly sorry for our actions, we are willing to accept the consequences. Being forgiven does not cancel out consequences.

ALTER your behaviour. Are you just sorry you got caught? Or will you actually plan, with God’s help, to change your behaviour? Express this, but don’t promise that you will “never do it again”. Broken sinners are not able to keep such promises!

ASK for forgiveness. This is so important. It provides the offended person the opportunity to respond and express forgiveness. Don’t be surprised if they need some time to think and pray about their response.

This is not a formula! Our sinful hearts will always seek a silver bullet; outward signs that show us to be righteous. If our hearts are unrepentant, we can say these words, but they will not constitute a true apology. Let’s ask God to convict us of our wrongs and bring true confession and repentance.

This might all sound nice, but faith must show itself in actions. May I encourage you to think about how you have wronged someone? Be bold and write out an apology to God. And the scary part – go to the person you have wronged and apologise. If they forgive you, you can rejoice that you are reconciled! If they do not forgive you, you have still honoured them and Christ. God is sovereign over the outcome; our responsibility is faithful obedience.

And may God bless us as we seek to follow Him, even in the most painful of situations.


Check out Peacemaker Ministries at

I also highly recommend their short, readable book, Resolving Everyday Conflict, by Ken Sande. You can buy it online at: