Mosaic Blog

journey

Posted by Scott Else on 20th January 2017 | Comments: 3 | Read full post

Last night we received amazing news, Leicester City Council has chosen us as the preferred bidder to take over the running of Manor House Community Centre. This process has been long and often patience sapping and it is great to finally reached this place.

However, this is just the start of the next part of the journey that Mosaic Church is called to be on. Getting the decision was never the aim, nor was getting the building. We believe that Jesus has called us to turn Manor House into a Community Hub.

  • A place where those from any or no faith can find a place to be 
  • A place where the poor are helped and restored
  • A place where the diverse groups in our city can come together in genuine community cohesion
  • A place that is accessible to all, whatever their physical, mental or emotional challenges

There is so much to do, therefore we are celebrating but also looking forward to the journey ahead.

The same is true about life and faith in general, whether you are a newly engaged couple celebrating but looking forward or an older couple who have suddenly become empty nesters and many other life situations we are called to realise that we are just at a point on the journey.

The Apostle Paul says it like this  

13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus

 

Wherever you are today, you are just at a point on your journey, you haven’t reached the prize yet. We need to focus, press on and realise that Jesus has so much more for us. The journey is amazing, but the ultimate prize is the upward call of God….it’s Jesus himself !!!  So, while we celebrate a great answer yesterday, we look forward, we focus and press on, trusting that as we build an amazing Community Centre here we will experience Jesus on the journey and will ultimately see Him !!  


All other ground....

Posted by Scott Else on 16th December 2016 | Comments: 0 | Read full post

HopeI am sure we have all faced difficult times, times where darkness seems to crowd around, maybe you are right in the midlle of such a time right now.

In these moments we can find ourselves looking for the "light at the end of the tunnel", trying to think positive thoughts, having a positive mental attitude or saying every cloud has a silver lining.

Over the last few months I have faced many moments of frustration, had to deal with issues that seemed to be overwhelming and I have been reminded that the above don't work. In fact I have time and time again been reminded of a simple fact that Edward More wrote in a hymn about 1834. (it has received a fresh life via Hillsongs but I love the original)

My hope is built on nothing less, than Jesus Christ, my righteousness;  I dare not trust the sweetest frame, But wholly lean on Jesus’ name. 

On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand; All other ground is sinking sand, All other ground is sinking sand

When darkness veils His lovely face, I rest on His unchanging grace; In every high and stormy gale, My anchor holds within the veil.

At Christmas we remember the coming of a Saviour who brings us hope, a Saviour who walked the earth and faced daily challenges, a Saviour who loves us with an unchanging love, a Saviour who brings us from darkness into his marvellous light and is completely faithful.

Whatever you are facing this Christmas come to the one who is the solid rock !!


Serving our community

Posted by Scott Else on 23rd November 2016 | Comments: 1 | Read full post

At Mosaic, we have a vision statement that aims to summarise the values that we want to embrace as a people.

LOVE GOD | LOVE PEOPLE | LOVE THE NATIONS

One of the key areas that has flowed out of the LOVE PEOPLE part of our vision is seeking to serve our community sacrificially and in ways that make a genuine difference to people.

We have done this through projects, events but also through our commitment to Manor House Community Centre. Seeking to be a genuine expression of being salt and light in our community.

Over the last 2 years we have had many discussions with Leicester City Council about the building and the possibility of taking over the running of the building via CAT (Community Asset Transfer), we have developed what we believe is a very biblical attitude to serving our community here and are excited to see the opportunities that this building would give us to be a blessing to others.

Why I am telling you all this? Well, yesterday I submitted our final business plan for the building and we are now in a waiting process. There are 2 things that this process so far has taught me and I want to seek to apply to this waiting period as well.

Jesus has plan that usually isn't clearly revealed.

Like many children I was told that if I want to see in the dark I needed to eat my carrots. For a child that knew we had lights, who didn't eat vegetables and wasn't scared of the dark, this wasn't much of an incentive and I never made any attempt to eat them (and still don’t).

1 Corinthians says “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.” and often the plan we have to follow can feel like a child/adult stumbling around in the dark wishing they had listened to their parents encouragement, but this is exactly what a faith journey is like. We see dimly, we know in part and we take steps based on what we believe Jesus has said.

We believe that Jesus wants us to have Manor House so we can bless the community outrageously and are taking steps along this faith journey trusting we have heard right.

A journey that has been far longer that I would like, but I have been reminded of something else during this time.

In a time of waiting we seek to serve people

I remember having a conversation with a friend of mine about his church, they were without a leader (before anyone comments, yes they still had Jesus !!) and they felt like they were in a long waiting process. He said it was hard because they felt like they couldn’t get on with anything.

I must confess that I felt quite angry about this, but manged not to show it (I think !!).

I encouraged him that surely they could get on with loving people and loving God, see what happened and use the waiting process positively.

This has been true of the process we have been through with Manor, it would have been easy to wait until it was complete then get on with stuff, but instead we have tried to engage with people, love our community and a make a real difference while we have been waiting.

Whatever the outcome of CAT process, we will continue to serve our community and make a genuine difference.

How are you using the time as you wait for the things you believe that Jesus has spoken to you about?


A call to love

Posted by Mosaic Church on 29th June 2016 | Comments: 1 | Read full post

This week has been a week to remember, whatever our political persuasion or our thoughts on Brexit we are likely to be concerned by many things.

I don’t believe that this is the place to discuss views over the referendum but rather I want to quickly look at how we respond to those whose views differ from ours.

One of things that many people have been noticed is a rise in racism and I want to partly address this but actually I want to broaden it out and look at how we should respond to intolerance of all types.

We have such a huge range of examples from this week. There are those who are genuinely racist and want all of those from other nations to leave; we also have those we claim that all leave voters are racist and call them scum; we have those on the left of the Labour party who are looking to eradicate Blairite vermin; we have seen a sitting MP murdered, we have MP’s receiving death threats and Twitter is alive with abuse and threats towards Nigel Farage….so how as Christians how should we respond?

Over the last few months most of us will have seen the Martin Luther King JR quote

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”.

Many of us may well have posted it on social media and yet when our views are challenged it is easy for us to reply to darkness with darkness.

I am sure we all agree that Jesus most have something to say on this, yes He does and I quickly want to look at a familiar passage and try to draw out some lessons.

In Luke 10 we find Jesus being interrogated by an expert in the law about how to inherit eternal life and he gets to the answer of love God and love our neighbour, but after further questioning Jesus brings amazing clarification on what it means to love our neighbour. Jesus tells the story we now call The parable of the Good Samaritan.

There is much we can learn from this story but I want to focus on just a few things and I am sure many wiser people than me maybe able to find even more depth in the story.

Jews vs Samaritans

There was a great deal of hatred between the Jews and the Samaritans, in fact the Jews viewed them almost as the worst human race and had nothing to do with them. There were multiple causes that we don’t need to investigate here.

The hatred would have been very real and have major consequences on every day life, as we discover in John 4:9 - “The Samaritan woman said to him (Jesus), “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.)”

Hatred had defined their relationship for many generations and yet Jesus breaks down this barrier as he speaks to the Samaritan woman at the well and choses this tension to show us how to love our neighbour in the Parable. 

Outrageous Love

In the story we see a couple of people pass by and leave the injured man and then suddenly Jesus talks about a Samaritan.

The Samaritan puts aside hatred that has lasted for many generations, he looks past the social implications and he sees a human in great need. He displays outrageous love, he doesn’t worry about the cost to himself and he seeks to serve the injured Jewish man. He goes well beyond the call of duty !!

Outrageous love is costly as we see for the Samaritan.

Loving doesn’t mean agreeing with.

Whilst the Samaritan loves the injured Jewish man, he doesn’t seek to justify who he is or discuss their differences. In other words, there are still fundamental differences with who they are and what they believe, but this doesn’t stop him loving the injured man.  

So, what does this look like in today’s Britain? How does this impact the way we interact with people with whom we fundamentally disagree?  

My encouragement is that we would be a people who love those whom are from different religions, who have different worldviews, who voted in a way that is different to us, who we believe are racist and we must seek to bring the Kingdom of God into a very broken world.

That doesnt mean we dont ever discuss our differences or condemn unacceptable behaviour, but it should lead us to a place where we can disagree whilst seeking to love other people.


Kingdom serving

Posted by Mosaic Church on 24th June 2016 | Comments: 0 | Read full post

In today’s world, so many people just want to be famous; if you were to go into most classrooms in the country you would find people who would say that “When I grow up I want to be famous”, they don't know for what or how this is going to come to be and they are not really sure why they want this fame they just want to be a CELEBRITY !!!

This can easily influence how we view being a success for Jesus, we can believe that serving Jesus is only effective if I am a church pastor, if I speak at large conferences or if we lead hundreds to Jesus. S

Today we are going to look at a story that shows us that we can be used by Jesus in the small seemingly insignificant events of life.

In 2 Kings 5:1-16 we see a famous successful military leader(Naaman) but it verse 1 we discover that he has a very large problem. He is a leper !! As we go through the story we see 3 unnamed servants make a massive difference for God and to Naaman.

The Servant Girl – Built a bridge

The servant girl was in a job that she didn't choose, in fact she was working for the enemy of her people. How many of you feel that you are in situation like that?

This servant girl understands, she is in a position that she wouldn't have ever chosen. How does she react? She builds a bridge

She Cared

She lived out her faith in a hostile and unwelcome environment.

She loved her enemies !! This was a very real; very difficult thing for her to live out.

“Whom you would change, you must first love” Martin Luther King JR  

She worked hard

She was trusted, the wife told her husband, do you think she would have bothered if the girl was lazy and not to be trusted.

Witnessed about God

She did exactly what she could, she didn't feel able to pray for healing for him herself but she pointed Him to one who was anointed by God.

She was stirred to share what she had with Naaman.

Elisha's Messenger   

Now we change venues all together we end up at Elisha's hosue, Naaman stands at the door and is expectant, excited and wants to meet this man that is going to dispense God's healing.  But Elisha sends a messenger to the door...

How does the messenger feel?

Does he say but Elisha what are you talking about? This man has travelled hundreds of miles to come and see you, you're the prophet; you're the one that come bring the healing; what do you mean go to the door and tell the man to go and wash in River Jordan seven times, have you lost your mind, this guy could have washed in any river, why me, whats going on here; what do you mean your busy doing something else?

Whether or not, that happens the messenger goes and we assume he passes the message on properly;

He did what his spiritual leader needed him to do !!! – His spiritual leader delegated wisely to someone he trusted and could be trusted.

Naamans reacts badly that Elisha couldn’t even be bothered to come and see him.

Naaman's Servants

These guys are great encouragers- they know that Naaman will always regret it, if he runs all the way home in a sulk. So they encourage him to do exactly what he was told to do. After all if he had been told to make a grand gesture he would have.

They are also bold and truthful...Naaman didn't need some wishy washy advice, he needed someone who would mix – truth, boldness and encouragement with big dollop of love !!!

Naaman goes and does what he was told to do, he is wonderfully healed, not only that but we see his life is transformed in another way. He comes to know the living God, the God of Israel, He discovers a Saviour.

It’s wonderful to see that people who are unnamed and just going about small tasks can have a massive impact for God.

How does Jesus want to use you ?


Obedience Preach Part 2

Posted by Mosaic Church on 21st June 2016 | Comments: 0 | Read full post

This is the 2nd blog based on Scott's preach from 19th June on Obedience.

Water in wine (John2:1-11)

We often miss much from a story like this because we know it so well.

Verse 7 - "Fill the jars with water...."

Imagine you are on of the servants. How do you react to Jesus? I can imagine saying "Jesus do you know the issue here is one of wine not water? Do you not understand what is going on here? Seriously, they do not need MORE WATER !! THEY NEED WINE !!" But it appears that the servants take Mary (Jesus' mother) at her word and do exactlywhat He tells them to do.

What can we learn?

  1. The servants were obedient when it made no sense at all. They didnt question Jesus' ways they looked past the illogical command. How often does Jesus ask us to do things that appear to make no sense? This is a common Biblical theme.
  2. They saw a miraculous provision, they were instruments in the miracle and Jesus provided the best wine.

There are times when we need to do things that make no sense, just simple obedience and Jesus will do something miraculous.

What steps of obedience is Jesus calling you to take?

 


Obedience Preach

Posted by Mosaic Church on 20th June 2016 | Comments: 1 | Read full post

Last Sunday Scott spoke on Obedience, over the next few posts we will share some of the preach notes (audio will be available shortly).

Intro

Before we get into the main part of this preach we need to remind ourselves that we are loved eternally by the perfect Heavenly Father, who is different to our earthly fathers. We need to remind ourselves that His love and our identity is completely secure and is not based on what we do.

If you love me...

John 14:15 tells us that if we love Jesus we will do what he commands. There is sense in which Jesus wants us to understand that our loving response to His eternal love will lead us into a sacrificial obedience to all He calls us to do.

This works out at various levels

  1. There are commandments in scripture - Love one another and making disciples of all nations for example.
  2. There are moments when he speaks to us personally - About specific ministries, giving or how your raiase family for example.

His expectation is that we will obey Him, even what He asks us to do doesnt make sense to us.

We will look at a couple of stories in the life of Jesus and see what we can learn from these stories.

StormJesus sends into the storm (Matthew 14:22-33)

Jesus has just performed a major miracle, He has fed 5000+ people with a little boys packed lunch.

Then it says that "Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side" - the weight of the word made is perhaps a little understated in the English. Actually the word here seems to imply that he compelled, drove them or constrained by force, threats, etc.

The disciples would have likely have seen that their was a storm coming and Jesus forces them into the boat towards the storm.

What can we learn from this story

  1. Jesus sometimes sends us into storms when we obey Him. Obey Him anyway.
  2. As they went into the storm they experienced the presence of Jesus in a fresh way. They experience something miraculous (Jesus walking on water), Peter experienced something miraculous individually (he walked on water) and they receieved fresh revelation of who Jesus is (truly you are the Son of God) !!

While we are in the storms that come as we obedient we need to know that Jesus is with us and remember who HE is. He is one who even the winds and waves obey (Matthew 8:27)

more to come next post.


Holy, holy, holy.

Posted by Scott Else on 9th May 2016 | Comments: 0 | Read full post

I love when we see a snapshot of heavenly worship, we see in places like Isaiah 6 or Revelation 4 a declaration of who Yahweh is. 

"Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come." - Rev 4:8

Most people when they see these words talk about it showing how holy Yahweh is, this has never felt like the right answer to me (even though he obviously is Holy) and I wonder if a more accurate understanding is the acknowledgment of Yahweh being 3 in one. It does always appear to be holy, holy, holy. 

It is fascinating to see each time we see a snapshot of worship in heaven that the worshipping group (angels, beasts and the great multitude) seem to declare that Yahweh is holy. Not just that, but also that he is a triune being and that the Father is holy, the Son is holy and the Spirit is holy. 

I wonder how trinitarian our worship is? 

 

 


Success

Posted by Scott Else on 27th February 2016 | Comments: 0 | Read full post

At times I observe that as Church leaders it is very easy to follow the latest fad or trend; we can easily end up visiting conferences to find out the way to build our church but I have become convinced that this really isn’t how we are called to lead.

When we were at a very early (and very “unsuccessful”) stage of Mosaic a number of well-meaning people questioned how we were seeking to build Mosaic and whether we could find an “easier” path. On one particular day when I felt particularly battered I was on the phone to a very wise Church Planter and he said

“Scott, the measure of success is being obedient to Jesus”

It was a moment that Jesus has reminded me of again and again since, we know what Jesus has called us to and whatever the world/church at large think about how successful we are really doesn’t matter.

The Apostles Peter and Paul had very different callings and they needed to respect each other but also know their success would be measured by how faithful they were to their individually calling.

It’s a lesson that I am convinced we need to learn as the Church in the UK, I believe we need to stop chasing the latest church growth/trend and just hear from Jesus for ourselves then do what He says...this is all He requires of us.

 Or as Mother Teresa put it "God has not called me to be succesful; He has called me to be faithful !!"

 


Much more amazing than we can ever imagine

Posted by Scott Else on 20th February 2016 | Comments: 0 | Read full post

There are times when we can get so engrossed in the tasks that Jesus has called us to, with its challenges, defeats, victories and joys that we can lose all perspective.

SLXLAs we have gone through many moments when we appear not to be seeing all we expected to see on the journey to see Mosaic established I have been reminded time and time again that Jesus is truly magnificent.

The Apostle Paul words it like this

“8 Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ”

Often I believe we would be well served to learn from the lives of faithful believers like Elizabeth Elliot.

The key to happiness is Christ in me, not me in a different set of circumstances. Elizabeth Elliot

Five years into the journey called Mosaic I have learned again and again that Jesus is worth it all and is more amazing than I imagined before.

 


Responding to guilt

Posted by Scott Else on 13th February 2016 | Comments: 0 | Read full post

One of the ways that Satan can take us out of meaningful service and living for Jesus is to mock us when we have sinned. Over the weekend God has been speaking to me out of Micah 7 about the way to respond when this happens.

7But as for me, I will look to the LORD;I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me. 8 Rejoice not over me, O my enemy; when I fall, I shall rise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD will be a light to me.9 I will bear the indignation of the LORD because I have sinned against him, until he pleads my cause and executes judgment for me. He will bring me out to the light; I shall look upon his vindication.

Look to our Saviour.
When we feel like we can't look to Jesus we need to understand that this is exactly what we must do.

Rejoice not over me, O my enemy when I fall, I shall rise
We need to stand up to Satan's mocking and refuse to be taken in by it. We need to admit that we have fallen and the total grief that we feel and that we have dishonoured Jesus our King, but we need to declare that we will rise !!

When I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me,I will bear the indignation of the Lord because I have sinned against him, until he pleads my cause and executes judgment for me
We need to admit that we have sinned and because of this sin, we feel guilt and darkness...but we must also confess that our God is light and he will never leave me or forsake me.
We also must admit that we are bearing the indignation of the Lord but He who is the judge of all things will also plead my cause. My God has already punished His own son, His righteousness is now mine and I now stand forgiven in Him forever.

He will bring me out to the light; I shall look upon his vindication
Finally we need to remind ourselves that our God will bring us out into light and will completely restore us, and that He is trustworthy and His Son is our punishment and our righteousness.



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