New series: Unforced rhythms

By Andy O'Connell (on behalf of the Elders)

From 17 October to 7 November, we're doing a 4 weeks series on Sundays entitled Unforced Rhythms.

This is a phrase from Jesus’ words in Matthew 11: “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls”. The Message Bible beautifully paraphrases this as

"Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly." 

Andy O'Connell (on behalf of the Elders)

New series: Awaken!

By Andy O'Connell and Steve Jones

Who loves the sound of the alarm clock waking you up in the morning! Are you leaper-out-of-bed, a snoozer, or a coffee-grabber?

On Sundays at OCC, we're just starting a series exploring the message of Isaiah, one of the so-called 'major prophets' in the Old Testament (OT). Why are we looking at an obscure part of the Bible, when there is plenty of more straightforward teaching in the New Testament (NT)

God's Heart: Speaking confidently

By Sanjay Mahtani

Over the past few months, in response to prophetic words throughout 2020, we've been drawing near to God.

We've done this through our series on Identity and by exploring God's Heart - his heart for people, justice, mercy, family, and for all of us to play our part.

God's New Year's Resolution

By Sanjay Mahtani

The start of a new year provides an opportunity to pause, to pray, and to reflect. But this January, we might feel like we've traded New Year's Resolutions for New Year's Restrictions. Last January, we had no idea what 2020 would hold. As we enter 2021, we are prompted to look to the only One who knows the future, and ask what He is doing.

What is God's New Year's Resolution? 

On Sunday 3rd January, Steve Thomas (OCC's founding pastor) prophesied to us from Isaiah 43 & 44. 

OCC and Lockdown 3.0

By Andy O'Connell (on behalf of the Covid Working Group)

England is now in national lockdown. While there are difficult constraints on our social lives, schooling and work, places of worship can remain open, and people are allowed to leave home to attend.

What are we to make of this freedom to gather, while other aspects of life are severely constrained, and we are advised to 'stay at home' except for essential reasons? Is OCC right to continue with onsite services, or should we revert to online only? 

Andy O'Connell (on behalf of the Covid Working Group)

The greatest secret!

By Andy O'Connell

We've come to the end of our Autumn 2020 series IDENTITY. Although it was unexpectedly disturbed by another lockdown, meaning we had to interact online instead of in-person, it has been a rich series. 

We've explored God, and who he is - Father, Son and Holy Spirit - and who we are in relation to him.

Changing our identity

By Andy O'Connell

So, we're 3 weeks into our 9 weeks Sunday series on IDENTITY! How's it going for you?

The series comes in 3 parts, each of 3 weeks: 

We've concluded 3 weeks looking at God the Father, and how we find our identity as His children, in relation to Him. He has adopted us and wants us to see ourselves as He sees us. 

We're about to start 3 weeks looking at God the Son, and how His momentous death and resurrection was a pivot-point in world history, changing how we relate to God. We're going to see how to walk in forgiveness and the dignity of who we are in Christ.

New series - new season - new Sundays!

By Andy O'Connell (on behalf of the Elders)

We're very excited about our new series - IDENTITY - starting this Sunday 4 October. This series was planned for the Summer 2020 term and then postponed due to COVID, so it's been in the pipeline for ages and we're delighted to finally get to it. IDENTITY will ask who God is, and how we get to be in relation to him! In other words, how our true identity as humans is found in relationship with our loving heavenly Father. 

Andy O'Connell (on behalf of the Elders)

Body, we have no plan!

By Andy O'Connell

In our worship service yesterday, worship leader Chris Fulton said, at one point, "We have no plan! Over to you!" I don't know how you responded to that? Did you see it as an act of brave faith, or of reckless leadership?

"We have no pre-determined plan! Let's see what God does as we meet!" has long been a core practice of our sort of church. When I found myself becoming part of Oxford Community Church in the 1980s, it was standard practice to meet for 'body meetings'.