40 Days with Jesus

The run up to Easter is one of my favourite times of the year. Each new day, as we see the weather improving, draws us closer to the time when we celebrate Christ’s death and Resurrection. Normally in the run up to Easter I would encourage you to focus on Christ’s death as it is through His death that we are able to receive mercy and forgiveness for our sin. But what would the Easter story have been like had Jesus not risen? After all the animals sacrificed under the Old Covenant stayed dead! The resurrection though gives us confidence that the power of death is beaten, and that we like Christ will be raised to life on the last day.

Have you ever wondered what it must have been like for the disciples to encounter the risen Lord Jesus after the tomb was found empty? During a period of 40 days Jesus appeared to over 500 followers on at least 11 occasions as recorded in the gospels and Acts. What would it have been like to be part of that? How would your faith have been strengthened to see Christ standing in front of you with nail scarred hands and a pierced side?

Starting on Easter Sunday will be a 6 week series called ’40 Days with Jesus’. Each week a different preacher will help us join the disciples and retrace their steps in an encounter with the risen Lord Jesus. The series is supported by a devotional book by Dave Smith called (you’ve guessed it!) ’40 days with Jesus’. There are also small group questions and video clips that some Connect groups may choose to use during these 40 days in order to help us draw closer to our Risen Saviour.

Dave Smith is the leader of Kingsgate Church which was planted as a small group meeting in a home in 1988 and now consists of a congregation of around 1,500 people in a massive warehouse conversion in Peterborough. Dave Smith is joining us at Westpoint in August so this will also be an opportunity to get to know him before the summer.

If you would like to join us on the 40 day adventure you can purchase a copy from Amazon

Paperback edition 40 Days with Jesus from Amazon UK
Kindle edition 40 Days with Jesus from Amazon UK

This blog post featured in the March 2015 edition of Lifelines

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Living the Dream – by Dave Smith

LivingTheDream Many people are familiar with the life of Joseph. Whether it is because it is a Sunday school favourite, or as a result of the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, the story is always popular. The tale of a young man who has dreams, who is set upon by his older brothers, who conquers adversity and rises to be second only to Pharaoh is one that fires imaginations. Add in the sub plot of family fragmentation and then ultimately unexpected reconciliation and it is hardly surprising that ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat’ became a worldwide hit.

The biblical account of Joseph’s life however is far more than entertainment. It sets the scene for the big picture. It marks the transition from a family descended from Abraham to a nation in slavery. The account in itself provides a cameo of salvation, foreshadowing the salvation won for us in Christ. Yet on a more practical level, each of the episodes of Joseph’s life can also teach us important lessons on how to live the Christian life – examples to follow and mistakes to avoid.

Drawing on his experience as pastor of KingsGate Community Church in Peterborough, which has seen remarkable growth, Dave Smith uses the life of Joseph as an illustration of how to live the dream; how to seize our destiny and fulfil our potential in Christ. In this book he shows how God has a wonderful plan for our lives and he wants us to live it! The story of Joseph is particularly helpful because it shows us the progression of Gods dealings in a person’s life and therefore has the power to speak to us through all the seasons of our life.

This book will be a great accompaniment to the preaching series we will be following through July and August looking at the life of Joseph.

Buy Living the Dream from Amazon UK
Buy Living the Dream from Amazon US