The OCC student blog

A Pattern for a Purpose

A pattern of devotions
I used to think of devotional times as a necessity to ‘please’ God. Something to do, to achieve, to perfect, in the hope that it may earn God’s attention, mercy, perhaps even love. But it doesn’t work like that! God gives us His attention because it delights his heart to do so.
Iulia Mirzac
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Iulia Mirzac
Iulia studied Law at Oxford Brookes, and is now an apprentice at Oxford Community Church.

Posture in Prayer

man kneeling in prayer with a Bible
Something I’ve often been hugely challenged by has been the importance of kneeling in prayer. In fact, I’ve become really passionate about it!
Mark Poniatowski
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Mark Poniatowski
Mark studied history at Oxford, and is now an apprentice at OCC. He is currently training as a preacher.

A Season of Songs

Hands on a piano
What season of worship songs are you in? Jenna Coates looks at the value of thinking through what you're listening to and identifying your heart-cry.
Jenna Coates
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Jenna Coates
Jenna studied English at Oxford, and is now an apprentice at OCC, where she also leads a worship band.

Location, location, location!

House by trees
When thinking about consistent devotional prayer, location can be very important. I want to give you two top tips as to what we can to make sure our devotional locations are on point...
Mark Poniatowski
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Mark Poniatowski
Mark studied history at Oxford, and is now an apprentice at OCC. He is currently training as a preacher.

Shaking up our devotional lives!

Devotions - Bible on table

This term, our preaching series is entitled "Open Heaven, Changing Lives", and through it we're hoping to see our prayer lives flourish and our lives follow Jesus more closely - so "prayer and discipleship" if you like.

Al McNicoll
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Al McNicoll
Al McNicoll came to Oxford as a student in 2001. After 10 years in IT, he now works for OCC as Assistant Pastor. He is married to Caroline, and they live in Marston with their three children Élysée, Poppy and Florence.

Discipleship

Jesus called disciples, and told them to make disciples - what does that look like for us today?
Al McNicoll
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Al McNicoll
Al McNicoll came to Oxford as a student in 2001. After 10 years in IT, he now works for OCC as Assistant Pastor. He is married to Caroline, and they live in Marston with their three children Élysée, Poppy and Florence.

I know that praying is the best thing to do (I just sometimes need reminding!)

Otter seeming to pray

An extract from my diary:

July 25th 2016

Today I did the job application. I also finished the Legal Education in Africa report, packed for Berlin, travelled to London and shadowed Upper Tribunal Judge Cocker in the County Guidance case on human trafficking. Then had dinner at Mark and Hannah’s and only then went to bed.

Iulia Mirzac
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Iulia Mirzac
Iulia studied Law at Oxford Brookes, and is now an apprentice at Oxford Community Church.

Spring to Life!

Spring Harvest art

First-time Spring Harvest artists Beverley Jones and Amy Thellusson report back to base.

 

Amy Thellusson
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Amy Thellusson
Amy Thellusson is a recent graduate from The Ruskin School of Art and an intern at Oxford Community Church this year. She likes art and faith and gets very excited when they meet.

10 Points of Inspiration

Inspiration Just Ahead sign

Rather than writing about one thing, I wanted to share a collection of things that have fuelled me, encouraged me and spurred me on of late, so here goes!

Caroline McNicoll
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Caroline McNicoll
Caroline grew up in and around London, and came to Oxford in 2005. She now works for OCC as a Student Pastor. Together with her husband Al, she lives in Marston with their three children Élysée, Poppy and Florence.

The Rest is History

One crochet rest

Surrounded by needs, and driven by wants, what place does rest have in our lives today?

It's summertime, and if Gershwin is right then the livin' ought to be easy. Yet, on a sunny Saturday in a little holiday cottage in Cornwall, I feel just as compelled to have achieved something tangible by the end of the day as on any day at the office. So what is it that drives my longing for productivity? Why do I feel guilty for sitting down and doing very little for a stretch of time? And what does God think about all this?

 

Al McNicoll
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Al McNicoll
Al McNicoll came to Oxford as a student in 2001. After 10 years in IT, he now works for OCC as Assistant Pastor. He is married to Caroline, and they live in Marston with their three children Élysée, Poppy and Florence.