Then Chloe popped in from over Cardiff-way! And we worked out on Saturday morning that we hadn't seen each other in over 2 years. Shocking - but lovely to catch up in person on Saturday rather than on the phone.
Then it was out to Jonny's local with Peter and... Rich, who turned up from Reading-way (via Leicester, where he'd been speaking at CU). And I hadn't seen him in over 2 years either so that was another great catch-up - next time I'll just insist he brings Nicky.
On Saturday afternoon, Miss Amy Jarman married Mr Jonathan Lee, which means I can no longer call her AJ. It was all very lovely and exciting, as Amy is waving to indicate:
And at the reception I achieved one of my life's (lesser) ambitions: I got a photo of Pippa smiling. For the record, Pippa smiles an appropriately joyful amount, but not for the camera. I think it was the combination of Amy's wedding, Dave, and my pleading which did it:
It was, as always, wonderful in a gospel-and-Christian-love way to be back at Emmanuel on Sunday morning - they always make me feel I'm very much in the church. Bill preached on Hebrews 2.1-4 in his series on Hebrews, pointing out that while we may think the big dangers to the church are such as immorality in the church, or current popular heresies, the writer to the Hebrews considered the great danger to be drifting. Just merrily, inperceptably, gradually, effortlessly drifting. Therefore we must pay closer attention to what we have heard!
And it was lunch at the James' before back to Birmingham in time for evening service in my church - in our series on the Fruit of the Spirit, Pastor Chris is helping us consider how God exhibits these characteristics, because it is in beholding God that we grow into his likeness - if the fruit is of the Spirit of God, it is because he is like that. This week was on faithfulness and we looked at Lamentations 3 and God's faithfulness - intrinsic and eternal as he cannot deny himself, tied to his truthfulness in our understanding as he reveals himself inseparably in his word, and in all he does - before looking at Matthew 25 and the call to be a faithful steward of what God entrusts to us.
Finally, I see on Saturday my November EN arrived, providing me with great reading material as well as information & stimulus for prayer, for the train journey down to Swansea tomorrow. Together with All things for good, which I'm determined to finish soon!