This week's theme

No longer strangers

Today's reading

Acts 11:1-18

Today's prayer

Dear Lord, I am amazed at the way you lavish your love on all who ask. Thank you that you are a God who includes. Help me to reach out to others – whoever they are.

Fresh From the Word

Fresh from The Word 2024


Futher thought 2

For further thought

Are there people in your church and community who are excluded because of race, disability, or anything else? How can you help change the culture?

Who do you know who needs to experience the same kind of grace as the bishop showed to Valjean? How could you help?

Think about your church culture. Are there any power structures set up in opposition to the profound power found in the gospel?

In what areas in your life do you feel you are lacking assurance and hope? Ask the Spirit to seal the promise in your heart.

Find out the simple, joyful tune of this call-and-response song. Sing it! Or look up what your name means. Write it down. Or reflect on the names for the Messiah in Isaiah 9:6.

Write down the names of those who have offered you this ministry, and speak them aloud. This could be a good time to get in touch, thank them.

On a world map, in a newspaper, find the names of places where border disputes – or land-grabs – displace people. Pray for them.

Kat Armas explores what women on the margins teach us about wisdom, persistence and strength in her book Abuelita Faith1 – why not have a read and be inspired!

Awareness of the climate crisis is a sign of the times. How can we heed it? What meaningful action can we take?

Buy something fairly traded – fruit juice, trail mix, chocolate. Share and enjoy it.

Satan loves it when Christians bicker; it is the worst possible witness. Are there any situations you could diffuse or improve right now?

Is your faith truly your own? Or do you ride on the faith of your Christian friends, your church group, the Christian conferences you attend?

What might it mean to fully receive the overcoming power of the Holy Spirit in your life?

Other belief systems involve working towards your own salvation. What a relief to know that we can’t – and, because of Christ, don’t need to!

Whether you’re facing a big decision right now or several smaller ones, commit to seeking God’s will for your life through regular prayer.

Although the days of burnt offerings are gone, there's still a cost to discipleship (Matthew 16:24). What is it costing you today?

Notice who is talking and who is not talking when you are in a group of people. How can you facilitate more inclusive participation?

When and where do I feel vulnerable? How comfortable am I with my own vulnerability and the vulnerability of others?

What gives you hope? Hold fast to it.

Who do you think of as your enemy? What is that about? Imagine them as someone’s son or daughter, someone worthy of love.

Where are you bumping uncomfortably against something you do not accept? Is it time to take down your guard and think again?

What actions of yours are driven by anxiety? What actions of your church or community are? How can you inject calm into situations?

Who do I know who is facing oppression and domination? What words can I use which might offer encouragement and help turn things around?

Can I honour God without judging those around me who do things differently? When should I challenge another person’s behaviour?

How can my generosity be relevant and new each day, so all may know your blessing through my kindness?

Does our communion with one another relate to the degree to which all are fed?

Do I trust that God will have a forgiving, generous heart towards me, and if so, how does that change my response to others?

Have I felt the seeming importance of being at the ‘top table’? How might hidden places of service hold the fullness of the kingdom?

Think of a dirty task that you don’t like doing. Imagine how you would feel if a king offered to do it for you.

Read Job’s whole story. Can you relate to his understanding of God in the beginning and God’s revelation of who he is at the end?

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International Community

The states in which our FfTW notes are used in IBRA Nigeria, include the following states; Lagos, Ogun, Abuja, Kano, Oyum Kaduna, Edo, Ondu Osun and Taraba. The National President Rt Rev Dr Segun Okubadejo

It makes Bible become more relevant to their everyday situation and aiding the development of their spiritual stamina


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This week's writer

Liz is an author and poet, writing about finding Gods treasure in the midst of pain and brokenness, living with long-term illness. She lives in Shropshire, UK, with her husband Tim, a church leader, and their two children. Her first book, Catching Conten

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IBRA celebrated 140 years in 2022!

The knowledge and appreciation of the Bible carries on the 140-year-old IBRA tradition of encouraging people around the world. 

Read about our rich history and the origins of our founder Charles Waters, bank manager and Sunday School teacher – not a scholar, preacher, or public speaker – who had a gift for organisation and a vision for making the Bible accessible to all.

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