Refugee and Asylum Seekers: My training with Restore

Yesterday evening, I went to a refugee training support programme with a Christian Charity called Restore in Birmingham City Centre. It was the second meeting at this point, but I couldn’t make the first one, so this was my first time there. I arrived quite early and  when I walked in I thought, oh no, I’m the only young person here, this is going to be really awkward, but I didn’t let that stop me and I decided to stay. As the meeting began to start, we ended up with a group of about 10-15 people, and a few younger people arrived too, so I didn’t feel so isolated. I began to speak with the group and found out why different people decided to come. I met the team leaders, a woman from south Africa and a Chilean missionary living in the UK, both have worked for Restore over 20 years.

The first hour of the session was about legal terms and advice we would need to know. Just going through the list of things that have to be done to be a legal citizen in this country is so excessive! We were told that first, a claim has to be made by the person in question to the Home Office in Croydon, then their claim has to be decided. It’s done by weighing their reasons for coming and the risks of death, torture, or well-being may have on the individual. It’s not easy. We were shown some case studies and examples of scenarios and they all just blew my mind. One of the ones we were shown was of a young wife, her two children had been killed in the war in Syria and she didn’t know where her husband was. She stayed with her young child and moved to the UK. Because she looks after her young child, she has no time to learn English and is struggling with communication and a stable place to live. This is just one of many stories, its understandable why these people need all the support and legal advice they can get!

Near the end of the legal low down, a woman called Paulette from Cameroon was then asked to share her story. It was so inspiring and emotional, I was nearly in tears as she broke down while she remembered what had happened. She was a political activist in Cameroon and had been captured and tortured there for her strong beliefs and rebellion against the strict system. In  a bid to save her life, she posed as a partner with another person and flew to the UK. She made her first case and tried to appeal for initial “Leave To Remain”- this means you are legal in the UK. After some time, her case was denied and she was left with the chance to appeal again with a solicitor. She was then made destitute and things just seemed to get worse after the solicitors dropped her case the next year. After a long 7 years, she was finally given the chance to stay in the UK and rebuild her life. I couldn’t believe it. but that wasn’t the end, she hadn’t seen her mother in 7 years, and they had arranged to meet in Nigeria later that year. Sadly, her mother got sick and died shortly after. She was in tears in front of us and I could feel myself welling up, my heart really went out to her. She said she had support from her church and she prayed to God that she would be okay and after all that time, things are finally looking up for her. She now was arranged permanent accommodations, she’s getting her education on the rise and she’s beginning to grieve her mother.

What a story. shortly after this, the meeting had finished and people stayed behind to chat. I just had to talk to Paulette and encourage her and I did, I told her she was an inspiration and that God was with her and kept her going! She was grateful and thanked me, she was just so humble and gracious. That was my evening, and I loved it, it really made me think and be thankful that God has given us such privileges here in the UK. It also made me aware of the baggage people carry when they come into this country and how it affects their present lives,  you wouldn’t believe. The next meeting is coming up soon and I literally cannot wait, ill keep you guys updated!

Thanks for reading this post guys, be sure to follow the blog, thanks!

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The Journey Of The Apostles Begins: Acts Chapter 3

 

The chapter begins with Peter and John going up to the temple at the ninth hour. The number nine in biblical terms mean to achieve something, so here’s where it links in. The next verse says “and a certain lame man from his mother’s womb was carried,” so this man was carried into the temple where Peter and John were, at the ninth hour, very important. As the lame came in to ask for charity, Peter said, “silver and gold I have none; but such as I have give I thee: in the name of Jesus Christ get up and walk.” The man was healed in the ninth hour, but more importantly, his soul was saved and salvation had been achieved in the ninth hour (Jesus died on the ninth hour, the hour of completion, “it is finished”) Can you see the significance here?

Peter then in verse 12 addressed the crowd and asked them why they were so shocked, “Ye men of Israel, why ye marvel at this,” he told them that these miracles and signs they were seeing were all part of the beginning of Gods glory on earth in the following verses. Peter was so humble, he showed Jesus to be the one who deserved all the credit in verse 13, “for this it is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob – the God of all our ancestors who has brought glory to his servant Jesus by doing this.” Peter was focused and totally understood where the power from these miracles were coming from and he didn’t let the praise of the locals change him. As  he continued to preach to the crowd, he confronts the issue of the death of Christ and the views of the people. He explains that he now understands that the people of Israel put Jesus to death through ignorance.

The people didn’t understand who they were putting to death and that was the problem, their lack of knowledge and faith that Jesus was who he said he was, even though the prophecy was written in their holy books, they still didn’t believe. Peter knew this and he felt no revenge or need to avenge Jesus’ death because he knew the people were spiritually immature, they didn’t understand. What they needed, was teaching, they needed to understand Gods laws and Jesus’ life, although they were a part of it. Peter seized this opportunity to teach and speak to the people in the temple here and thoroughly explain Gods plans, “now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away…” Now was the time for teaching to be done, so that the gospel of Christ could be spread throughout the world.

 

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Thanks for reading this post, keep a look our for the next one in this Apostles edition. Be sure to follow the blog too, thanks again for reading!

The Journey Of The Apostles Begins: Acts Chapter 2

The outpouring of Gods holy spirit on the 12 disciples was one of the most defining moments in human history. Acts 2 takes us into the beginning of the handing down of Jesus’ full and unlimited power and how the apostles carried such a historical and important responsibility…

The apostles were all gathered together in an “upper room” praying earnestly and connecting with God. They knew the power, which is the holy spirit, would one be given to them, Jesus told them in chapter one, so you can imagine the suspense and patience they had felt! Jesus didn’t want them to leave Jerusalem until they had been given it, if you have read the previous post. But now they had finally received it, they were equipped to carry put the full work of God.

The Holy Spirit comes as fire
While the disciples were praying, the holy spirit came to them, verse 2 “suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm, and it filled the house where they were sitting. 3 Then what looked like flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on each of them. 4 And everyone present was filled with the holy spirit and began speaking in other languages, as the holy spirit gave them this ability.” So we have the first encounter with the holy spirit to the apostles. When the holy spirit came on them, it gave them the ability to speak other languages, this is so significant, because Jesus came to teach us and to get the message of the cross, to the whole world. Now the holy spirit giving the apostles the power to speak like this is also an outward showing that the gospel will be sent to all people of all languages and walks of life, so amazing.

Peter’s strength to Preach To The Crowd

After this had happened, they were heard by other devout Jews from every nation, living in Jerusalem. They were surprised that they were speaking their languages, and insisted that the apostles were drunk. Having heard this, Peter explains the prophecy that was to happen, vs 17″in the last days god says, I will pour out my spirit upon all people. ” This is where their knowledge and understanding would come into play. People were making their own excuses for what was happening, but now was the time to explains things the way they had been told by the father himself. Jesus of course told them all this, so you can imagine how amazed they were to see all the things he said coming true before their very eyes. Peter began to go in-depth about the resurrection of Jesus and uses the words of King David, “King David said this about him, I see that the Lord is always with me… for you will not leave my soul amongst the dead.” He explains these words of David to be speaking about Jesus, how he knew that he would be risen from the dead, so joy filled his heart. As Peter tried to convince and explain these truths, they brought over 3000 souls to God that day. How inspiring.

The apostles became like sub leaders for Christ, and the bible says the believers “devoted” their selves to their teaching and fellowship. They were so committed to giving every second of their lives to God, they performed miracles, healed people and gave their money from sold possessions to the poor. They worshiped at the temple every day, God was in them, and they were in God. The power that was given to them for the price of their commitment, would not only save themselves but the thousand of others they brought to Christ. Astonishing. The second chapter shows the role of day-to-day life, following Jesus in their minds and hearts, actively doing and seeking after his will in their lives. They had just began to give everything up, and they were reaping the rewards of their faith.

 

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Thanks for reading this post. Keep your eyes open for the next Chapter commentary, hope you enjoyed and understood it. Thanks again for the support guys, god bless for now xoxo

 

The Journey Of The Apostles Begins: Acts Chapter 1

Where did you first hear about Jesus? Well the apostles were the first and most successful people to spread the message of the cross to the world, through healing, preaching and supporting people, but how did it all begin?

Luke produces the commentary of this chapter explaining the aftermaths of Jesus’ death and what followed after the resurrection of Christ. Verse 3, “During the forty days after his crucifixion, he appeared to the apostles from time to time, and he proved to them in many ways that he was actually alive”. Now this is really interesting, Jesus appeared to them but on more than one occasion after his death, explaining things to come in the future. Although they had so much to understand, Jesus tried to fill them in on what would happen next and what would be required of them through Jesus’ power.

Jesus’ first instructions for the Apostles

When in one of these meetings with his followers, Jesus told them not to leave Jerusalem until they received “the gift” (verse 4: do not leave Jerusalem until the father sends you the gift promised, as I told you before). This is referring to the Gift of the holy spirit that would help them to do the work set for them. The holy spirit was the tool that they would need, the strength that would empower and uplift their souls in times of struggle and adversaries, because there were a lot of those times and they had to be spiritually prepared for the journey. Jesus in his final meeting with them told them how they would be a witness for him and take the gospel “to the ends of the earth- vs 8” which they have achieved! After he spoke, he was taken up into heaven and they were all amazed, then “two white robed men” explained Jesus would return to the earth in the same way he ascended in his glory. What does this mean? This is referring to the second coming, when God will return to judge the earth once and for all.

The replacement of the Apostle, Judas Iscariot

After what had happened with Judas, when he betrayed Jesus and handed him over to the soldiers, and eventually his death, the apostles went in search for another willing brother to follow them and take Judas’ place. They went to Jerusalem and entered an upper room to pray with each other and Peter gave a speech, “the scriptures had to be fulfilled concerned Judas, who guided those to arrest Jesus.” Now this shows Peters maturity, he now gets it, he understands that Jesus came here to earth to die and pay for our sins. He came to teach and impart his knowledge into us, so we would have the strength to carry out his will in our lives. Peter suggested to choose someone that was there from when Jesus was baptised by John, till when he died. But why? Having seen the whole journey, and all the events that took place, it would only be right to choose someone who had the understanding and who was an actual witness to everything that had happened. So the people prayed for who it should be out of three choices and a man named Matthias was chosen. Now the apostles were now back to twelve, the journey of giving the message of the cross would finally begin…

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Thanks for reading this post guys, keep an eye out for the next post that will include chapter 2 of the acts thanks again for reading!

Happy Easter: Jewish Passover & The Last Blood Moons

Jewish celebrations are times of fun and enjoyment for Gods historical people. But is there more to the modern celebrations? Is there meaning in the dates and times of this Jewish ceremony?

The Jewish Passover is a very important event for the Jews. It’s a time to celebrate Gods faithfulness to Israel, as we remember the time he brought them out of the land of their slavery known as Egypt. They celebrate with symbolic foods like bitter herbs and wine to represent pain and suffering ect. It’s also Easter for us, the time when we remember the day Jesus died and the time he rose again. But there is something astonishing about these events this year and through the coming next year and how they tie into natural world events involving the “blood moons.” The Blood Moons are carefully orchestrated around the dates of the Jewish celebrations like Passover and Sukkot over the next year and this year. But how can it be? It’s just nature. Well that’s the point. The Jewish calendar has not been altered or changed at all, this is where the conscience gets a little too strange…
What are the “Blood Moons”?

The Blood Moons are literal red coloured moons that can be seen in the sky. So how does thus link you may ask? A lot of research has been carried out by the space association NASA involving these blood moons. The have been observed and watched these past months, there were two scheduled for this year, 2014. In biblical terms, these blood moons are signs from God and have been mentioned and predicted in Joel 2:31 “the sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon into blood before that great and terrible day of the Lord.” So from this we gather that blood moons are a representation of the last days, a warning that God is soon to return. Now this clearly states what is happening here, but the coming link is just fascinating…
The Jewish Passover for this year began on 14th April at sunset, this is when the first blood moon was seen! You may think that’s just an amazing coincidence? I think not! The next blood moon is set to be seen later this year, with another two in 2015. Now interestingly, the blood moon set for this year will fall on the 8th of October, in the exact time of the second Jewish celebration called Sukkot, also know as the Feast of Tabernacles. Now that’s two totally random blood moons falling on Passover (already been seen) and Sukkot. This is NOT a coincidence.

Further Blood Moons In 2015

There are two more blood moons set to be seen in 2015. Astonishingly, these just so happen to fall on the Jewish ceremonies again! One will again fall on Passover 2015 and Sukkot 2015! This is really something. After these, there will be no more for 100 years. So we have four blood moons, (one already gone) all fitting the exact times of Jewish ceremonies and celebrations. In 2015, we will see the blood moons set over the world, at these special times in Jewish culture, which is an amazing event!

So what does this mean?

Blood moons always signify a world event to happen with Israel or illustrate a big change in the world systems. For example, in 1492, a blood moon was seen and later the Jews were expelled from Spain and there are more to name. God uses these signs in the sky to warn his people an event will take place, to remind them that he is always with them. So from these amazing signs, we can expect some major activity to happen in Israel or around the world within the next year. The final Blood Moon set to take place in 2015 on Sukkot, is a really special one. The Moon is going to be at the closest point of proximity to the earth, something that is amazingly unusual. Could this be another big sign from God? I think so. All these signs are alerting and directing us to the day of his coming and the rapture of his people, that’s why this is so important for people to take in and be knowledgeable about. Keep reading the Blogs Guys…

 

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As Passover continues, keep an eye out for any news on this topic. For any more info on this search John Hagee Blood Moons. Thanks for reading, keep an eye out for the next post!