The Sunday Refill – 7 Links for Your Weekend (19/4/20)

Seven up…

1) Finding hope in a Covid-19 world – This looks a great resource. It’s aimed at someone who isn’t a Christian and is full of short articles to share with friends exploring such as ‘Why I fear the shadow of death’, ”When I’m feeling the pain of isolation’, and ‘When I’m struggling with the kids’, each commending the gospel.

2) Can you support Christian books in this time of Coronavirus? – Many in the UK & beyond will be grateful for the work of the Christian book distributor & publisher, 10ofthose. Here’s a simple way you can support them at a time when many of the event where they run bookstalls have been cancelled.

3) Praying is the Most Practical Thing You Can Do – I love this from Rachel Jones. When we’re limited from doing so much, praying is one thing we can definitely do. To adapt one of John Piper’s lines, how tragic would it be if one of the great uses of Lockdown will be ‘to prove at the Last Day that our prayerlessness was not from lack of time’. Oh and here’s some more great prayers for different situations, including ‘a prayer for stir crazy children’, ‘a prayer for the beleaguered’, and a ‘prayer for grocers’ – why not print some off?

4) Rabbit Room Quarantine Care Package – The Rabbit Room ‘fosters Christ-centered community and spiritual formation through music, story, and art’. It’s also the home of Andrew Peterson and friends. This page is a collected feast of delights to take a look at under that triad of ‘music, story, and art’ – go take a look and enjoy!

5) A T4G 2020 Sermon: What Is and Isn’t the Gospel – The Together for the Gospel 2020 event went ahead online this past week in the US. I’m told this is probably one of the stand-out talks – and sees Greg Gilbert engage with those critics of his popular 2010 book ‘What is the Gospel?’. This is a theologically stimulating talk – and particularly engages with the claim that the heart of the gospel is ‘Jesus is King/Lord’.

6) Remote worship is revivifying the *parish* – This is a short but interesting Twitter thread from James K. A. Smith on his observations that the notion of ‘remote’ or ‘virtual’ church during lockdown actually seems to be growing a sense of tangible community and place. More broadly on this theme of ‘church uploaded’, Nay Dawson has been compiling some encouraging stories and case studies of how different churches are doing things. Ros Clarke has also collated some examples and top tips from small to medium-sized churches.

7) Creative ways to have fun online – For something a bit different, I guess most of us will have discovered the likes of Zoom: “Why have we never used this before?!”. Here’s some fun ideas and associated websites for how to spend some of your ‘spare time’ (sorry, what?!)…

Quote of the Week: 

“So this trying experience of being distant, separated, remote, could turn out to be a season of learning to be a more *in*carnate community of faith—an embodied, located *parish.* The digital could, paradoxically, be a way to renew the local.”

— James K. A. Smith

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Written by Robin Ham