Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tax Collector

I am in the process of writing a small group course for bigbible.org.uk called "Meetings with Matt" - four sessions on fundamentals from Matthew's Gospel. I have spent the morning trying to get into the character of Matthew (or Levi as Mark and Luke refer to him).
I can relate to this guy. He once worked for the government - Matthew collected taxes from those traveling the highway between Damascus and the sea, I collected council tax from local residents who generally thought it was highway robbery! Matthew was despised by his fellow countrymen, I was despised by market traders, allotment holders, football clubs, visitors to the public parks and gardens, cemeteries, you name it, at some time or other, they had it in for me as the head of the council.
Like Matthew, when I met with an incredible teacher, who wanted me to learn from Him, I was amazed that someone like me, could be called to follow this Master, this Prophet. Before long, I realised that He was more, much more. A King, a Saviour, the Lord. And all I could do was, pack up the tax collecting and follow!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Back to Blogging!

I can hardly believe it's been over three years since I have added anything to my blog. Well here goes as I attempt to write some occasionally interesting, rarely profound, but (hopefully) always positive ramblings on all sorts of topics.

As a Christian, I hope my blogs will be honest as I reflect on life as someone who has, as an adult, chosen to become a follower of Jesus Christ.

Why would a young guy of thirty-something choose to even write the name of some (possibly) bearded, carpenter fella that lived 2,000+ years ago? How did this man have such a influence on human history? How come those that claim to follow Him have been some of the most amazing people to ever live and also some of the worst?

How is it that our calendars were reset as a result of His birth? Why is the book that not only predicts His life, but then goes on to chart His birth, death, resurrection and the lives of His earliest followers, always the number one best selling book - (so consistent is it's position at the number one slot, that most lists no longer include it)?

Why have so many dies for His cause? Why do people continue to suffer rather than recant their belief in what this man claimed was truth?

What makes a pretty average guy living in the UK in 2010 choose to follow this man an His teachings?

All interesting questions (at least I think so).

Surely there must be something different about this guy?

Stay tuned!

Monday, April 16, 2007

Capernwray in the Spring

With Roxy and Jo - I love these guys!

I travelled up to Capernwray by train over this last weekend for Dougie's 40th Birthday party which was great fun. I think he was genuinely surprised because he was quiet, which for anyone who knows Dougie, is unusual!!
My fantastic friends Jo, Ian, Erynne, Melissa and Roxy took me out for dinner on Friday evening which was a great time. It was weird to be back at Capernwray in the Spring, because the place starts to look like it did when I first arrived there this time last year. WOW! What a lot has happened in a year. This time last year, jenny was just a face (all be it a beautiful one) across a crowded courtyard.

My journey home was incredibly long - I had forgotten that they do all the engineering work on the railways on a Sunday. A journey that takes 4 hours by car, took me 9 and a half hours by train and bus. But I did have a really interesting converstaion with a young Christian couple on the bus, so that made it all the more worthwhile. God's plans are so exciting!

Monday, April 09, 2007

The Quirks of Gant

OK so I was tagged by Jenny.

Premise: blog a blog about six weird things about yourself. Then "tag" via inter web 6 other people to do the same thing. Don't forget to let them know on their own Bloggy McBlogs that they've been inter-tagged.

End result: everyone gets to learn about your lovely little quirks. So here are the Quirks of Gant (there are many more, but these were the first that came to mind)!

1. I cannot stand using a telephone with a twisted cord. I have to hold it up in the air before I dial and let the receiver dangle and unwind its self. This also applies to the lance of the car pressure washers found at petrol stations.

2. I always warm the tea pot with boiling water before I make the tea. However, I don’t think this is a quirk, this is the kind of stuff Britain built it’s empire on (mind you look what happened to the empire). Whilst we’re on tea, I would also have to say I do much prefer to drink tea out of a bone china cup and saucer rather than out of a mug.

3. This is getting worse now – I am very, very particular about how a table is set for dinner. Ideally, the more silverware, china and crystal wine glasses are used, the better. Obviously a white table cloth is a must, as are proper cloth napkins.

4. I absolutely abhor bad manners. However, I know that actually, I can be pretty arrogant at times.

5. I like hot toast, cut into triangular slices and served straight from the toaster in a toast rack (preferably, but not essentially, silver). Slices of toast should never be laid on top of each other, as this causes them to sweat and subsequently get soggy. Soggy, cold toast, as served daily at Capernwray Hall Bible School, is to be avoided at all times!

6. I have an unusually large collection of cuff links! The best/saddest pair being some shaped like steam engines (pictured - I can't believe I'm that bored I took a picture of my cuff links), although I do own a pink diamond pair, but I won those in a raffle, so I don’t own them out of choice – just bad luck!

That's it - weird I know, but then we all suspected it. I choose to tag, Jo, Melissa and Becky.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

OK, I know I am very sad!!

Just to confirm (as if confirmation were needed after the pictures of me gardening in my wellington boots), I am a fairly sad individual! Here is a picture of the steam engine that I own. She is an seven and a quarter inch gauge, 0-4-0 side tank engine (which probably means nothing to anyone). Yesterday we moved her out of her shed for the first time since the winter and moved her to the Little Orchard Railway for her annual boiler test. How exciting!! I guess the fact that I have posted three posts in less than a week shows you that I am a bit lonely! Jenny gets here in 14 days, 18 hours.

Church was fantastic this morning. Duncan Banks (one of our Church Leaders) spoke and me and two others gave testimony. It went really well and the church was packed.

Happy Easter - Praise our Lord Jesus Christ, he has risen and is alive.

"I am the living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever!"
Revelation 1: 18

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Womens' Work!

Some people say that washing up is womens' work, but of course I would strongly disagree. However, Becky and Ashley, my buddies from Capernwray who have been hanging around the Gant Household these last couple of days, are traditionalists who wanted to prove that, despite being women, they were quite at home in Marigold rubber gloves! They'll kill me when they see this, but they'll be in America by then, so it'll be too late. Huh ha!

The Big Three Oh!!

I'm thirty! Help! Actually, I don't feel no different. My Birthday was great. I went out on Saturday night with Dale and Matt (pictured) in Chelmsford back to the old haunt of The Basement. Woke up early on Sunday and got back to Suffolk in time to take my group of lads at youth group. Then went to Sue's for what I thought was going to be a quite lunch, only to discover that she had planned a kids party for me. Lots of my favourite people, sandwiches (with the crusts cut off), jelly, ice cream, chocolate marshmallows, etc. And because the weather was lovely, we sat out on the lawn, ate, drunk Pimms and lemonade and played party games. Great fun.

Then in the evening, Me, Mum, Dad, Alex and Vikki went out for a fantastic chinese meal. A brilliant day - I wished for Jenny when I blew the candles out on my cake!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Back to my Roots!

15oC here in Suffolk in March, so I got out into Mum and Dad's garden and had a bit of a tidy up. I thought it looked so nice, I took a few pics!