Ross Lester's Blog

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2011/11/28

Dear BBC

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”  - Isaiah 9:6 (NIV)

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2011/10/11

Dear BBC

I love my job, and I know that not everyone gets to say that. You guys pay me, and pay me well, to read the Bible and to shepherd you, and I don’t take that for granted. It is an enormous privilege and most days a hugely joyful thing. But, a lot of the time, church work can be hard and discouraging, and it can seem like good seed is falling on hard soil and that no progress is being made. Every now and then, I need a day when I get reminded of why we do what we do.

Sunday was one of those days.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2011/10/05

Dear BBC

Over the last couple of weeks, it has come to my attention that there is a Christian man in Iran who is scheduled to be executed for his faith. Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani has been found guilty of apostasy and has been sentenced to death by hanging, unless he recants his Christian faith, which is something that he is refusing to do. The mind boggles, the heart melts, and hopefully the knees buckle as we are driven to prayer on behalf of Pastor Youcef, his family and the nation of Iran.

Just think about it for a second.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2011/08/30

Dear BBC

 

This is a blog post that I wish I didn’t have to write, but I feel that I have to.

Over the past month or so, two young men who were connected to BBC took their own lives. They have left behind devastated families and a multitude of questions that we will probably never be able to answer. I have been repeatedly asked two questions though that I think we can answer with confidence:

1.  Can a true Spirit-filled Christian commit suicide?

2. Will a Christian who committed suicide still go to heaven?

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2011/08/22

Dear BBC

 

It is my intention to write a letter to you every week. In these letters, I hope to expand on some of the things that we have learned together from scripture, to help clarify some confusing issues, and to talk about things that are happening amongst us as a people. I hope they are useful and enjoyable.

 

I thought that a good place to start would be to talk about some of the things I want BBC to know as I return:

 

1.      I love you, and I want to see you doing well.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2010/02/02

Okay, I am not even kidding with the title. I am kind of freaked out and excited and freaked out and excited. I think you get the point.

I said last year that I wanted to experience more of God. However I could get it. And there was one clear gaping hole in my Christian experience, and that was the fact that I wasn’t really sure about this Holy Spirit deal. 

I knew what I didn’t want to experience, and I made that clear.

I didn’t want :

•    A dude with a white suit and sweaty holy hanky banging me on the head until I fell over.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2010/01/27

It is not like me to steal a phrase from a self-help book, but in this case, it is actually true. (Today Matters by John Maxwell is seriously excellent). Today matters. It really does.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2009/12/14

So as the world watches on in either horror or glee at the disaster that is the undoing of one of the greatest sportsmen of all time, I thought I would take some time to think of what we can learn from Tiger’s situation. His story contains some universal truths that I think can be very helpful for us.

I would like to say at the get-go, that I take no joy in Tiger’s fall. My heart actually goes out to him, because it tells of a desperation that he must have been feeling for years. So while I strongly condemn the actions of the man, I won’t condemn the man.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2009/11/26

So if you live in Jozi, 2009 is basically over. We don’t do December. We work so hard the rest of the year, while everyone else is surfing or gazing at the mountain, that by the time the end of November roles around, we are all too ready to go surfing or to gaze at the mountain. (Well I would surf, but that would mean going in the sea. Which is full of sharks and sewerage, and sharks.) And spend our hard earned cash in otherwise unsustainable coastal towns while the locals moan about our presence, and double their prices.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2009/11/19

Disclaimer:

This posting probably won’t add anything to your life, so further reading is purely voluntary and at your own risk. Ross Lester and BBC won’t accept any responsibility for any perceived waste of time whatsoever.

I am just a dude. A pretty silly one at that. So the point of this post is to further destroy the perceived gap between pew and pulpit and give you some insight into the fact that I am a regular Joe. A regular Joe with a very cool job.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2009/11/10

I want more.

More of God.

It’s that simple.

There is a huge gap between who I want to be and who I am. There is a huge gap between the kind of relationship with God that I preach, and the kind of relationship with God that I have.

I have tried pretty much everything I can to fill that gap.

Discipline. Determination. Discipling. 

All good things. Just not THE thing.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2009/11/02

So, this last Sunday I preached a pretty difficult message from Luke 9 (yip the whole chapter), and we have had an overwhelming response from people really trying to get to grips with a God who is sovereign and still good.

And that really was the point of the message. It is really hard to get to grips with this stuff. In fact, it can be downright infuriating, and frustrating and really confusing to be a follower of Jesus.

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2009/10/27

I really do. I love the church. I guess its because I believe the Bible when it says that the church is not just the holy huddle, country club, chino wearing, acoustic guitar playing, office working, crazy conservative cult that most believe that it is, because that is what it has pretended to be. In fact, scripture makes a remarkable claim about this redeemed group of people. In Ephesians 3 it says: 

“His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms,” – Ephesians 3:10  

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Posted by Ross Lester on 2009/10/27

“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” Philippians 4:4 

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 

Just recently, I have been asked repeatedly about God’s sovereignty, and how it can exist alongside his goodness, especially in the face of all the suffering that we see in the world. (For more info on this, please read the article entitled “Good God?”)

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