Saturday, May 26, 2018

Diary w/e 26 May 2018

Sun 20 May

Pentecost but neither of our IPC churches attended mentioned it. We had a beautiful morning through the green countryside to Liss where James Buchanan give his usual good exposition, this time on God cutting the covenant with Abraham. But St Peter's was dim and cold inside. Pleased to see many of the new L'Abri students there. Lunch was with the Buchanans. Then back on a surprisingly free flowing route to home where Katy was playing piano at the evening service with Paul preaching on the man stoned for gathering sticks on the sabbath and tassells on the garments.

Mon 21 May

Dug rest of the western border. Fifth cut of lawn which is now smaller.

Tues 22 May

Katy back to her cello with quartets. Chris Roberts good as ever on Ecc 7 at lunchtime talks. Pastoral visit then took our member to her bank. Katy out to strings with cello in the evening.

Wed 23 May

Housegroup 1 Sam 20 at Cradocks.

Th 24 May

Full house of twelve at earl elders prayer meeting. Lunch with the Littles at Pillars.Visited our member with dementia and sorted payment of her income tax.

Fri 25 May

Katy drove to Edgar farm, Little Walsingham in over four hours including a 24 mile mistaken detour along the M11. Large and luxurious but steps on the ground flour are a hazard to me. Went to a local pub only to find it not serving food so we had to wait for our grocery delivery then out to a second rather noisy crowded pub. Back to a family full house of fifteen of us.

Sat 26 May

Afternoon at Wells Next the Sea. Amazing number of dogs and it looks like one is back to the old England. Children enjoying the pool at the house.

Friday, May 25, 2018

The changing world (106) Jun 81

Jun 1st Failed to find managers in three Kafanchan locality bookshops. Lunch with Ossoms at Kagoro Bible School where the bookshop has been told not to buy from us.
2nd      Sold books to Modern Bookshop Kafanchan. Brought Sue davies to Jos.
3rd       Supplied Albishir with books. School reports. Jonathan c/d. David b/c. Picked up Onamusi children and others from Kent Academy Miango and took them to Kano. Great food from Grace Onamusi as ever. I think she likes my enthusiasm for it as her husband is no trencherman.
4th        With Dele in Kano on Amazing Grace planning our book work.
5th       Shopping in Kano. Sermon preparation. Enjoying Grace's food and playing with their children.
6th       Back to Jos. Swimming. Power off since last night.
7th       Preached at Hillcrest. Roger Petch with us. Swimming. Only two hours electricity.
8th       We have a job roster for the children but they d=seem unwilling. They now feed the chickens every day. TEE committee. Enid crane seems to undermine decisions made. NEPA not on until 7pm.
9th        Pastor from Akwanga took big book order. NEPA very bad.
10th      Unpacking and sorting books. Watchman trouble accusing each other of sleeping on the job.
11th      While I spoke at the prayer meeting the night watchmen came to blows and I had to separate them.
12th     Tabitha started work for us. Had to empty fridge before holiday because of power cuts. To Miango for dinner. Hohls there. Deb has runs.
13th      Deb not well. Dominys here.
14th      Jonathan sick in night. Deb not well. Preached at Hillcrest.
15th      Children up the volcanoes with the Hohls.
16th     Enjoying boules with Mennonite missionary.
17th     SIM leaders from several countries here for a conference.
18th     Sleeping too much with abundant food.
19th    Sermon preparation on holiday.
20th    Heavy rain all day. Visited grab. Musical evening at lemmings in Jos.
21st    Jonathan sick all day. Visited the graves at Kent Academy. Preached at evening service.
22nd   Took children to see plane landing by the volcano.
24th    Lawn darts and bowls.
25th    5lbs cizakis picked on Vom road.
26th    Left Miango paying N260 for two weeks with one day free for preaching. Prospective night watchman refused to accept a trial period on N20 a week. So I see we are from the rich class.
27th     Katy made cizaki jelly but it would not set.Generator on 7 to 9pm as no NEPA.
28th     Preached twice at Mango. Cizakis picked.
29th     Rachel vomiting and fever. painted office.
30yh    Rachel still not well. Tabitha working.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

General Data Protection Regulation

I am sick and tired of this, especially endless emails and what I regard as churches craven subservience to fiat law.
   I see civil law as having various categories.
1. Law that has a moral base in revealed truth. Though half not steal means there are penalties for theft. Not to obey is sin
2. Law that contradicts revealed law. e.g. the so-called same sex marriage law. It is legalised fornication and is to be rejected. Agreement is sin.
3.  Law that follows the general equity of biblical law. Then you had parapets on flat roofs. Now we have health and safety. We are to obey. Speed limits would often come here though some seem arbitrary.
4. Fiat law with no moral basis. I am not free to chop down my own trees if there is a preservation order. OK. I may chop them down. No sin. If I am summoned and fined I pay up. Now I regard the GDPR as in this category. It comes hot off the EU press so as a keen Brexiteer I do wonder if a sovereign UK would have introduced this. I suspect so for we have legislators who love to create jobs putting civil service bums on seats. But compliance costs much effort and £40 per anuum. What a waste! Why not ignore it and see what happens? IMO nothing will happen as like many silly regulations there will not be the civil servants to enforce it. But Christian churches and groups are so keen to be thought well of that they meekly comply. It was the same when English Heritage slapped a Grade II losing on out chapel. Did we pull it down before the regulation took effect and so free up our site for redevelopment? No we meekly complied. No protest from our trustees. I confess to being depressed at the time so share some responsibility. I am often a reluctant complier with these fiat laws. For the sake of peace and quiet I agreed to comply with child protection disclosure as a trustee in order to keep the peace. I have no supervision of children and object to being suspected of being a paedophile until I prove otherwise. Presumption of innocence has gone. We are all suspected of money laundering, employing illegal immigrants and drunk driving unless we prove otherwise, when there are no grounds for suspicion. As Chesterton said, if men will not be ruled by 10 commandments there will be 10,000. Of course that was a long time ago. 10,000,000 would be my current estimate of our police state.

The concept that God has chosen Pol Pot, Erdogan, Mussolini, Hitler or any president to have the authority to create binding laws dismantles the Scriptures’ concepts. The Scriptural emphasis is that God’s Law stands in judgment over men’s laws. We therefore have the obligation to judge the laws of any country, of which we are citizens, in light of the Law to love “your neighbor as yourself” (Remember the Egyptian midwives). On this, as Christ says, hang ALL the Law and the prophets.” The whole thrust of the Scripture, in multiple reminders and instructions, is on bringing life and order, love and compassion to the stranger, the poor, the widow, and the orphan. - On Law and Authority, Udo W. Middelmann

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

The changing world (105) May 81

May 1st Public holiday for Labour day. Gardening. Swimming.
2nd        As 1st. Katy pickled cucumbers. Lot of termites.
3rd         HQ preaching not much copper exposition. Beth Mullan to lunch. Swimming. Terry Hemming spoke in the evening.
4th         Asked to give blood for a Polish professor. Sue Davies to lunch. Gave Theological Society paper on New Paths in Muslim Evangelism as per Parshall.
5th         Pricing books for sale. Electricity very bad these nights.
6th         Gave students Hausa test. Took books to Albishir Bookshops. N1100 sold.
7th         Books to FCS. Lot of rain. NEPA off at night as usual.
8th         TEEAN committees. Visited Boers and talked with Ruth Veltkamp about Muslim work. Later she had converts who others suspected were fraudulent. This led eventually to her leaving CRC mission.
9th          Some gardening and then shopping with Katy and Kathleen Gula.
10th        Rain drove us inside at HQ as I presided at the Lord's Supper. Two medical students to lunch.
11th        Took student to Vm. Sold books to Y'au's bookshop. Greeted Zwambun in pharmacy, Wilmshursts and Gills. Saw Tom Owens about TEE lecture's at Pastors College. Drinks at Drews.
12th         Farewell tea by Hillcrest PTA for two teachers, Rose and Wagner. Wells to dinner.
13th         Took books to Fellowship of Christian Students.
14th         Hausa course now in two classes.
15th         Hillcrest school junior concert.
16th        Gardening. Swimming. Dele visited on way to Lagos.
17th        Deborak dedicated. Bulleys to lunch. Swimming.
18th        To Kaduna staying with Anne Nesbitt and Tony Barker. Visited church.
19th         Two sessions of TEE course. Visited Foxalls, SIM.
20th         TEE class. Visited three bookshops and sold to one.
21st          Teaching again. Sold books at another shop and at church.
22nd         Treated to meal at Durbar Hotel. Visited Baptist pastors college with book list.
23rd          Finished TEE course. Back to Jos. Enjoyed Elijah at Hillcrest.
24th          Bulmers back from leave and to lunch. Swimming disrupted by a storm.
26th          Hausa teaching. Power off so thankful for a generator now.
27th          Hausa course ended with a buffet. Hillcrest term end too.
28th          First full day of electricity for a long time.
29th          To Sue Davies of CMS Kafanchan.
30th          Sold books to a shop. Picnic lunch and swim at Kagoro. Soaked by sudden storm. Visited ECWA Bible School , Ossoms and Archibalds.
31st           Ibo evangelical preached at Holy Trinity. Deb sick in Night.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

News from Nigeria

This comes from a friend in Nigeria. I follow the BBC Africa service and four Nigerian news sites and I have not seen this reported.

'These past two/three weeks have seen a horrific spate of killings mainly by suspected herdsmen.  Benue State has suffered most and a mass burial has been held today, 22 May for the most recent killings, led by the RC Cardinal.  Similar things have happened in Kaduna State and Adamawa but not quite on the same scale.  Quite inexplicable is that none of these have been reported by BBC as far as we know.

Here is an extract from the Cardinal's speech: 

"The death of the righteous is in the hands of God. 

We thank God for bringing us here. Nothing is hidden from God. We are horrified looking at the 17 corpses that we are burying today. This killings must stop. One life killed is one too many. We do not need to take statistics. Killing people in a place of worship is the worse form of blasphemy. Oh Lord have mercy on us. 

We have every right to be angry and protest. But our focus now is prayer so that the criminal attitude of a few will not tear us apart. 

While we pray for these martyrs, we remember all who have lost their lives in the hands of the terrorists. May God console the bereaved. Vengeance belongs to God so we pray for the spirit of forgiveness. We pray for the conversion of the terrorists who committed this atrocity. When we pray for the enemies, we hand them over to God. May God remove from our leaders the demon of corruption and sectionalism. 

Only the seriousness of government can stop people from thinking that there is a plan for ethnic cleansing and imposing one religion on the nation. If we are united in prayers, then our brothers and sisters would not have died in vain."

We were also sent the call to prayer by Rev Dr S Bewarang who is the CAN Chairman and former President of COCIN:

"Today Benue will stand still as they bury innocent victims of wicked hearts of their killers. Thus the prayer focus for today and this week is that we would pray for those in authority for wisdom and political will power to do the needful. Let us pray too for those who are unjustly attacked and accused so that God's protection would cover His people. That He would surround them with favor as a shield. Pray fervently for evil plans of the enemy would be thwarted and truth and identity of the killers of innocent lives will not only be known but face the wrath of the law. That the mass burial will be peaceful and word of God will comfort the families, Government of Benue  and indeed the Catholic faithful in Benue Nigeria and the World. Pray that as believers, we would be descerning and quick to recognize what is real and lie. Be confident of Isaiah 54;17 and Psalm 125:1-2. We will continue to condemn what is scripturally condemnable trusting that the love and care of the Lord surrounds His people both now and for evermore. Have a blessed week and continue in prayer for Leah and other remaining Chibok girls.” 

It's significant that the Federal Government has banned the Media from reporting on the mass killing in Benue.'

The changing world (104) Apr 81

Apr 1st My students played the joke of a forged letter to me. To Hillcrest for PTA office handover.
2nd       Hausa teaching. Deb unsettled while Katy at prayer meeting.
3rd        Picked up 1 Cor TEE books from NBTT printers.
4th        Handed over Rockhaven supervision to Bentleys. No more staffing problems to sort.
5th        Preached at HQ in both language services. Campus Crusade singles to lunch. Thieves around again last night.
6th        300 Km to Kano. Staying at noisy Dele's. Grace's pepper stew excellent. Visited the plot he is buying. Took minibus to have the Amazing Grace Books have painted. Chat with ECWA pastor on TEE.
7th         Enjoying Grace's cooking. Selecting banner books to buy. Sabon Gari traffic is scary.
8th         Back home in Dele's air-conditioned ar at 140Km/hr.
9th         Jonathan Murray here from Kaduna. Evening prayer meeting with him.
10th       Our visitor took Katy and Rachel to Naraguta for pots.
11th       Invited to Yelwa Club, Bukuru, by Rules and Sproules. Lots of hot meat.
12th       Palm Sunday. family to Hillcrest while I preached at HQ. Visited Miango river and waterfalls.
13th       Took our visitor to the airport. Visited Foron. Sue Davies here on TEE Association work. Brian Evans on persecution at Theological Society.
14th       Chest pains. Jean Wells says it may be pleurisy. Jones of SIM TEE to dinner. Columbia space shuttle landed.
15th       Dele brought the minibus and books. Brian Boddy to dinner.
16th       John Nash, evangelist at Vom, has taken a second wife under family pressure for the son Naomi cannot give him. I was disgusted that the church merely dismissed him and did not support Naomi divorcing him on the grounds of adultery. But COCIN has inherited a wrong view of marriage regarding Christian marriage as the only kind that is exclusive and indissoluble.
17th       Good Friday. Wilson Embu good at HQ. 325 Km to Anne Nesbitt at Kaduna. Under four hours.
18th       Preached for EKAN. Visited Foxalls of SIM. Rain.
19th       Enjoyed cooked breakfast from Anne. Preached at EKAN. Pastor took me to HEKAN secretary who is keen to start TEE. Tony, Anne's partner arrived from UK. They married later.
20th       271Km back home. Jonathan cut his t-shirt in six places.
21st       Electicity erratic. Heard uncle Jim Kinnear died a week ago.
22nd      Gulas to lunch. Electricity off. Termite problem.
23rd       Sorting books then test papers. No power but a lead connected to our neighbours who have it.
24th       Mending around the house. First power for three days.
25th       Power off 10am to 11pm. Swimming.
26th       Graeme Rule preached. Hemmings to lunch. Swimming when a little rain came to alleviate the heat and humidity.
27th        Hausa course restated but I aim to do as little as possible.
28th        Hillcrest PTA executive. Power off 6-9pm.
29th        Storm brought heavy rain and a power cut.
30th        Took guard dog Alsatian Niko to vet. He hates the van which he associates with the vet where two of us have to hold him down. Rain every day.

Monday, May 21, 2018

The changing world (103) Mar 81

Sun 1st Martyn Lloyd-Jones went to glory in the early hours of St David's day. HQ church. Hills to lunch. Swimming.
2nd       Teaching four students in the remedial Hausa class. John Boer on Christianity and Science at the Theological Society.
3rd        Teaching Hausa. Did some translating for Real Health Project. Paul Tench to dinner. No light.
4th         Hausa teaching. Water in short supply.
5th         Electricity afternoon only. Jonathan poor school report.
6th         No power until 8pm. Visited Jonathan's teacher. Fran Morgan to dinner,
7th         No power in the morning. Swimming in afternoon.
8th         Justin preached more of a lecture than a sermon Wilmshursts to lunch. Swimming. Lights off an hour at night.
9th         Hausa teaching. Elected vice president of Hillcrest PTA.
10th       Visited Dele at Miango. no electricity 11am to midnight.
11th        Emmanuel Oladipo lectured on marriage. Electricity off until 11am.
12th        Teaching Hausa. Spoke at prayer meeting.
13th        Daniel Bitrus lectured on relationships. First rain of the year.
14th        Night watchman killed two puff adders. I skinned and dried one over three feet long. Swimming. well water only.
15th         Good preaching by Justin. Sproules to lunch. Swimming. led evening bible study.
16th         Teaching Hausa. Did TEE accounts. no lights 7pm to midnight.
17th         As 16th.
18th         Teaching. Swimming. no lights 7 to 10:30pm.
19th          Unpacking our drums which have come safely at last.
20th          Davou Gyang lectured on customs.
21st          Paddling pool filled as Elm House pool closed while new water supply connected. Katy to musical evening.
22nd         Hillcrest service with Jonathan singing. Good new chaplain. Boers to lunch. Led evening Bible study.
23rd         Hausa teaching. Visited by Paul Oakley with whom I agree on future plans.
24th         Hausa teaching. No lights 7-11pm.
25th         Water tanker came. Hausa teaching and TEE accounts.
26th          Hausa teaching. Why no students at prayer meeting?
27th          Strained 23lb honey brought by Garba.
28th          Planted beans.
29th          Preached in English at HQ. Ladipos to lunch.
30th          hausa teaching. Electricity intermittent.
31st          Three thieves chased off in the night by the watchman.

Diary w/e 19 May 2018

Sun 13 May
 Interviewed by the senior children in Sunday school. Paul preached on the Lord's prayer. My first drive for nearly ten months. I preached on the ascension at Harmondsworth Detention Centre. New detainees from Bolivia, Ghana and Nigeria. My application was for them to wait on God who alone knows the future and to be witnesses in their Jerusalem, to the majority there who are Muslims. A church history book from the Littles and beer from Seabers.

Mon 14 May

Awaiting another tender for our garden walls. Fourth cut of the grass and a dig over of the second corner of the garden. Elders meeting. Full house of fourteen. Eleven from Ealing, two from other churches we help oversee and one trainee minister. Done by 10 pm.

Tues 15 May

ATM swallows a new card for no apparent reason, Ealing Council send me a court summons for council tax though I set up a direct debit and SSE failed to install a smart meter today after over six months as our meter has the wrong ID number. Triple frustration! 

   Urology at Central Middlesex say that after the Botox in the bladder last month it is not completely voiding so I am to use a catheter daily. But in the words of Corporal Jones, 'they don't like it up 'em'.

Wed 16 May

18 years since my father passed on. 
U3A history 3 on Stalin. One of the five present thinks he wasn't all that bad! But she is the sort that if there is a stick she will grab and brandish the wrong end of it.
Afterwards it took me forty minutes on the phone to sort out my court summons for alleged non-payment of council task. Now for an open letter to my local councilor, leader of the council, asking him to sort our a not fit for purpose revenue department. Housegroup on David, Jonathan and Saul.

Thu 17 May

Went to the garden centre for more topsoil. Started to remove turf from the border western of the lawn.

Fri 18 May

Dug more of the border and removed earth from dried turf. Enjoyed Giro d'Italia and a Yorkshire one day win over Durham.

Sat 19 May

70th birthday party of Cyprian Blamires, son of the famous Harry Blamires, author of The Christian Mind. I met his late wife back around 1972 at Vom Christian Hospital when she came out on a medical student's elective. Her brother, Kenneth Skilling treated me to breakfast at Cafe Diana (Opposite her former home of Kensington Place and advertised as her favourite cafe) Then he took me and four of his family in a hired minibus to Market Harborough. Beautiful house, garden and party with abundant refreshment. I had a day of Pimms while enjoying the royal wedding on TV and the first half of the cup final before the minibus to London and the treat of an Uber home courtesy of Kenneth. Great day. Sorry Katy was not up to it.

Friday, May 18, 2018

The changing world (102) Feb 81

Feb 1st Trevor Wells preached at HQ church. I did evening Bible study.
2nd       Started Hausa teaching but missing my lost old notes. Fourteen students a fortnight into the course. Complaining to Peter Dominy about plans to close Rockhaven.
3rd        Hausa teaching. Executive Committee protesting to the governor, Mar, over a three month ban on open air preaching.
4th        After teaching talk with Rev Bitrus Manjang abut TEE in Daffo and Jos.
5th        Looked after our four while Katy at prayer meeting. Deb seems more settled here.
6th        Hillcrest PTA Nigerian cultural evening then refreshments at Drews.
7th        Sacks of flour bought but no sugar. katy at musical evening.
8th        Preached for Presbyterians. Evans to lunch, Ladipos to tea. Took Bible study.
9th        Kohorn advocates continuous creation at the Theological Society. dele brought the minibus back but our loads still not here.
10th     Helping Trevor Wells sort out what Haruna at Publications has fraudulently taken. Visited Dele in hospital for piles operation.
11h       Dele in pain after his operation had two Nigerian women who commented that now he would know how they suffered in childbirth.
12th      Giving extra Hausa tuition to Queenslander Ian Sprout. Years later he sacrificed his own life to save his family in a car crash. With Hemming and Drew to house of Senate Secretary for a reception.
13th       Sorting TEE accounts which have been left in a mess. Liz McKinnon and Charles Todd to supper.
14th       Took children to Elm House pool.
15th        Colin Bulley good exposition. Wells to lunch. Took family swimming.
16th        Hausa teaching continues.
17th        Children had rabies shots. Daintys to supper.
18th        Deb unsettled after triple vaccine. Visited Dele who is out of hospital.
19th        The students want the Hausa course split in two saying the slow wants hold back the more able.
20th        Daniel Musa lectured on Nigeria since independence.
21st        Both water and electricity are on irregular supply these days. Swimming then hot skewers of meat - stir. One eats banana afterwards to counteract the pepper.
22nd      Met Graham Myton of BBC Hausa at church where C Bulley ws excellent.Tylers to lunch then swimming.
23th        The lost Hausa notes found in the TEE store. Haruna of Publications taken to the police. Utilities intermittent.
24th         David off school with fever.
25th         Stocktaking of TEE store We hear our loads have been in Kano some time. Tanker came with water but no light at night.
26th          Peter Dominy says I am to divide the Hausa clean]ass. Haruna sentenced to three years imprisonment.
27th           Enjoyed Kraemer v Kraemer at Hillcrest.
28th           Swimming followed by hot meat, yam and kosai.

They key to Ecclesiates

Ecclesiastes seems enigmatic and its authorship is disputed.
   Traditionally it has been attributed to Solomon though it does not bear his name though 'the Preacher,1 the son of David, bking in Jerusalem., seems pretty obvious.
   But the experts say the Hebrew shows later Aramaic characteristics. I have no Hebrew but have another idea.
   Often when you look at a text you should consider not any what it says but what it does not say. The preacher says life under the sun is meaningless. But there is one aspect of life he does not consider. History. In particular the history of his own nation, of Israel, of God's saving acts.If this is Solomon, how could he forget Israel's history?
   Was Solomon not led astray by his many foreign wives and their religion which was tolerated?

1 Kings 11:1.  Now King Solomon loved many foreign womenalong with the daughter of PharaohMoabiteAmmoniteEdomiteSidonianandHittite women, from the nations concerning which the LORD had said tothe people of IsraelxYou shall not enter into marriage with themneither shall they with youfor surely they will turn away your heart after theirgods.” Solomon clung to these in love. He had 700 wiveswho wereprincessesand 300 concubinesAnd his wives turned away his heart. Forwhen Solomon was old his wives turned away his heart after other godsandyhis heart was not wholly true to the LORD his Godzas was the heart of David his father. For Solomon went after aAshtoreth the goddess of theSidoniansand after bMilcom the abomination of the Ammonites. SoSolomon did what was evil in the sight of the LORD and did not wholly follow the LORDas David his father had done. Then Solomon built a high place forcChemosh the abomination of Moaband for dMolech the abomination ofthe Ammoniteson the mountain east of Jerusalem. And so he did for all his foreign wiveswho made offerings and sacrificed to their gods.

Then we read in Ecc 7 -

26 And I find something more qbitter than deathrthe woman whose heart is ssnares and netsand whose hands are fettersHe who pleases God escapes herbut tthe sinner is taken by her.27 Beholdthis is what I foundsays uthe Preacherwhile adding one thing to another to find the scheme of things 28 which my soul has sought repeatedlybut I have not foundvOne man among a thousand I foundbutwa woman among all these I have not found. 

His chauvinistic conclusion was based on personal experience. He had been taken in by the snares and nets of femmes fatale. He writes with his wisdom as it were fettered by attention to the material world visible around him and forgets the history of God's salvation. Hence his conclusion as to the futility and frustration of existence. That is life without knowledge of the one true saving Lord.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The start of Ramadan

As noted by the priestess speaking on BBC's Today programme, the Muslims are starting their lunar month of hardship, particularly hard with long summer days in northern latitudes. She mentioned how some Christians in a Muslim environment fast in sympathy. I believe this is a huge mistake.
  By all means respect the Muslims and do not drink to eat in public in front of them. But IMO to join in fasting is wrong for several reasons.
  The point of Christian fasting is to give yourself wholeheartedly in prayer to God emphasising the urgency of your intercession. It is a good, worthy and profitable discipline which I should have done more. But it is between you and God and to be done in secret without show. You are forbidden to practise your piety before men so to say you are fasting in sympathy with someone else is forbidden. It is a false show of piety.
   Muslim fasting is meritorious. It is to earn favour. Christian fasting is a response to grace and a prayer for more.
   Muslim fasting is IMO folly. More food is consumed that month than normal. Bingeing is encouraged. It is injurious to health and productivity. It is supposed to produce piety. Instead there is short temper and frustration. IMO it is one of the follies of that masterpiece of false satanic religion taught by the false prophet.
 Others say

The changing world (101) Jan 81

Jan 1st Family visited Braithwaites who are generous as ever. Not feeling well after cholera jab yesterday.
2nd      Cooked tandoori chicken for Geoffrey and Sara.
3rd       Rachel riding her bike to the shops with us all on foot.
4th       Omri Jenkins at WEC and our valedictory service there in the evening. Lunch at Wattesons.
5th       Getting drums ready to pack. Steadmans visited. Root filling ended severe dental pain from nerve.
6th       Worried about packing and return. Bradforths visited.
7th       Packing the children's tots. Whistles visited and I ran them back to Barnett.
8th       Hospital for tropical Diseases for yellow fever shots. Anxious.
9th       Dreading going back.
10th     Digby James visited. Children to WEC Sunday school party.
11th     Bill Clark preached. Lunch at McDonalds.
12th     Packing fearful we have too much for the drums.
13th     Packed one drum.
14th     Depression hindering packing. Bought a trunk.
15th     Packed trunk. Encouraging counsel from Bill Clark and Jack Findlayson asking am I called. I am.
16th     Packed second trunk. Jonathan says he has bad dreams about fire but we think he wants to sleep with the light on.
18th     Last Sunday WEC. Bill Clark rather eisegetical again. Godfreys for lunch. Leapers round at Overends for tea. Deborah colicky again.
20th     Myself only to Skipton. Iranians release the American Embassy hostages after 440 days.
21st     Sold car. Bus back to the family.
22nd   Packed cases. Weight all OK.
23rd    Chaos at Heathrow with a BA strike. Two hours delay to Amsterdam and an hour there. Dele and Grace met us at Kano. Quickly through and to SIM.
24th    Three hour drive to Jos in our new Amazing Grace Books minibus. House all ready for us.
25th     Meals with Wells and at guesthouse.
26th     Jonathan in grade 4, David grade 3. TEE committee appointed me treasurer. Eating in guesthouse.
27th     Deborah seems more settled here.
28th     First breakfast at home. Teresa started to work for us.
29th     Took prayer meeting which seemed to lack a spirit of praise.
30th     All our own meals now. Shopping for supplies and find inflation not as bad as it might be after statutory pay rise.
31st     Hausa course started before our return. having lemmings is encouraging. Water supply has improved. Guest house filled with course students.

An open letter to Cllr Bell, leader of Ealing Council, concerning his 'not fit for purpose' revenue department.

Dear Sir,

In early April I noticed my council tax had not been taken under my previous direct debit which referenced my previous property so I set up a new direct debit.
   Later in April I received a letter to say I had not paid so I immediately emailed querying the letter. I received an automated reply promising action within ten days.
   Next I receive a court summons for the year's tax plus costs of £116 for non-payment. I phone. I am told the wait is long, leave my number. I will receive a call.
   Over half a day later no call. I ring again. After forty minutes I have it sorted. A new direct debit. Payment by instalments. No costs. But no apology or explanation either. Should I bill you for costs?
   I suggest your revenue department is in need of overhaul, audit or whatever. What other inefficiencies are they up to?
   Enjoy your four years.
Yours faithfully,

Graham J Weeks

PS. Cllr Bell ensured I received a reply and apology from the revenue department.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Predicting the future

I have enjoyed the BBC Predictor game on the BBC website predicting Premier League results. At one stage I was 9th. I finished the season 37th out of a total of players: 464709 which is not bad. I am proud to have beaten Lawro the BBC's expert pundit . The winner had 3750 points. I was 230 behind him. The last time I could check Lawro was 70 adrift of me.
    What have I learnt? Form is the key. I look at the league tables primarily then previous results. I used to look at the betting but all that tells you is other peoples' opinions but it can be a check to save you from a  careless mistake.
But form goes out of the window at the end of the season when those going down start beating better teams. 
Main lessons are, it is an inherently unpredictable game. Form may give you a reasonable indication of the result and perhaps a clue to the score. But scores are most unpredictable.
     It does not tempt me to bet. Its you want to double your money, fold it over and put it back in your wallet. You cannot beat the bookies on this really. They do the math. They win.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Diary w/e 12 May 2018

Sun 6 May

Not feeling well. Cold and gout. Colchicine for the later. So missed Sunday school and evening service. Ordination of Chris Roberts. It has been so good to see his growth in gifts and ministry as he has trained with us. Moderator David Gibson preached. Lunch at Littles.

Mon 7 May

Colchicine effective for the gout and pretty well recovered from yesterday's lethargy. Deb helped clear the second garden corner of turf and I found the buried top of a sundial, most appropriate for the 27+C heat, a May holiday record nationally. I found another way for controversy. Try telling vegans of their irrationality choosing a diet that required an addition of a vitamin supplement. Vegetarianism is a fad, vegan, a folly. I'll stick to meat even if as some say it predisposes to gout.  BTW, colchicine is from a natural plant remedy of long standing.

Tu 8 May

Gethin Jones spoke on the resurrection from John 20 at Ealing lunchtime talks. My pastoral visit was frustrated by the perversity of Barclays bank who are unable to establish the identity of a customer on the phone when she is unable, due to failing sight, to read from her statement without help. When I am officially trustee of the account I shall make official complaint.

Wed 9 May

Dealing with the turf from the lawn, removing soil. To chiropody for regular appointment. On presbytery committee investigation by Skype. Positive outcome so far. Housegroup on David and Goliath.

Thu 10 May

U3A on the history of linguistics rather dull but excellent lunch afterwards with seven ladies to celebrate one attaining 90 years.

Fri 11 May

Off the Oval to see Surrey v Yorkshire. Not happy with £20 flat rate entry, OAPs no discount. No scorecards made available and no entry to the stand behind the bowler's arm. Yorkshire started well then faded.

Sat 12th

Twelve of us out of the immediate clan present for my 72nd birthday. In two weeks all fifteen of us will be on a Norfolk farmhouse holiday together.

Vegans and B12 - the facts and the folly.

Do not answer a fool according to his folly. I have had a practical lesson in this proverb. do not argue with vegans. Rationality is like meat in their diet. I have always held veganism is a folly as in any diet that requires supplements. Tell this to the vegans and you will be told it is not so. B12 is bacterial. All diets require supplements. I was tweeted with this nonsense after I gave a quote from an NHS site on B12.

Here are the facts.' Vitamin B12 is one of eight B vitamins; it is the largest and most structurally complicated vitamin. It consists of a class of chemically related compounds (vitamers), all of which show physiological activity. It contains the biochemically rare element cobalt (chemical symbol Co) positioned in the center of a planar tetra-pyrrole ring called a corrin ring. The vitamer is produced by bacteria as hydroxocobalamin, but conversion among different forms of the vitamin occurs in the body after consumption. Only bacteria and archaea have the enzymes needed for synthesizing vitamin B12; no fungi, plants, or animals (including humans) have this capability.

The overwhelming majority of individuals in developed countries obtain adequate dietary vitamin B12 by eating meat from ruminants (eg cows), whose muscle tissue is replete with the vitamin due to their normal gut bacteria synthesizing the vitamin, which they then absorb. Other sources are foods with the vitamin artificially added ("fortified"), intramuscular injection, and vitamin B12 tablets ("supplements") taken either orally or sublingually.'

So it is not a bacterium and those of us with balanced diets do not need supplements.

Vegetarianism I tolerate as an inconvenient fad only requesting the faddists to inform me if they want to enjoy our hospitality. I will not cater for vegans.  It has been pointed out to me that a carnivorous diet was commended to the apostle Peter by heavenly vision which told him all foods are clean.  

I will not answer posts from vegans.

The changing world (100) Dec 80

Dec 1st Planning Amazing Grace book catalogue with Dele.
2nd       Expecting Katy home tomorrow.
3rd        Katy home. Meeting in Bedford. Poor remuneration.
4th        Took David to town for a Mr Men party at which he met John Noakes and received a prize.
5th         Deb would not settle after tea until late. Katy had tooth crowned.
6th         Took children to spend book tokens and bought Rachel a second hand bike.
7th         163 mole round trip to see Boddingtons and ranald Macaulay. Lunch with Fischer-Webbs en route to Weeks in New Zealand.
8th          Boys school carol service at Charles the Martyr. Church meeting at WEC agreed to lease Guessens to EMF.
9th          John Lennon murdered. Rachel class presentation at school.
10th        Spoke at Longmeadow Evangelical Church.
11th        Deb unsettled at night.
13th        Leapers visited.
14th        Preached twice at Ealing. Support pledged monthly. Larsons said the church had considered calling me as pastor.
15th        To SUM Sidcup who say we should return Jan 9th.
16th         Deb cough so bad we contacted GP.
17th         Met with helpful lecturer on Hausa at SOAS. Rubbish GP says Deb needs only nose drops.
18th         Children finished school. Deb taken to clinic and referred to Barnett where she was admitted with chest infection.
19th          Cooked chicken curry lunch. Visited Katy in hospital with Deb.
20th          Katy home. David to a cinema party. Jonathan and Rachel to church party.
21st          Prof. Andrews preached at parade service. Lunch at Horners. Told mote of Tait's obsession with many. It was later to cost him his pastorate with accusation over his influencing a member's will.
22nd         Deb's cough some better but on two antibiotics and has colic.
23rd          Took children to town for an Atara's Band concert. Mum and dad down.
24th           Tree presents asked. Deb consistently keeps us up late.
25th           Katy took the family to the Methodists. I looked after deb who was unsettled all day. Lunch at Overends.
26th           All the grandparents with us for lunch. Deb grumpy. Rachel loves the bike.
27th           Mum and dad return home. Jonathan upset. Katy says our return must be postponed.
28th           Preached twice at WEC. Lunch with Clarks.
29th           Barnet says deb is fine apart from cold. Return to Nigeria postponed by a fortnight.
31st           A car hit David, Rachel and me on a zebra in darker Lane. Ambulance and piece called but OK. Surprised no action taken by plod.

Friday, May 11, 2018

The changing world (99) Nov 80

Nov 1st Visited covenanter sites with John Scott. Mauchlin, Sorn and Ayrs Moss. Most impressive Priesthill, a walk over the moor to John Brown's grave, shot by the wicked Claverhouse in front of his wife. Near Scott's house saw Peden's pulpit where the seer preached from a rock.
2nd        Preached twice at Dalry then drove home by 6am. Needed coffee and a snooze en route.
4th         David third prize at the greengrocers in a vegetable head competition.
5th         Overends here for bonfire and fireworks.
6th         Routley to tea.
7th         Visited Sidcup office.
8th          Cooked tandoori chicken.
9th          Bethel church Birmingham, miserable donation and an opinion host.
10th        Aldridgce Anglican Mothers Union.
11th        Bethel ladies then a prayer meeting and back to Potters bar.
13th        Visited Strict baptist  mission Abingdon and spoke at Thame baptist.
14th        Train to Oxford for CU West Africa prayer meeting.
15th        Digby and Marriane James to tea.
16th        Preached twice at Welwyn.
17th        Took Jonathan to orthoptics at GOS Hospital. Katy says she may be starting.
18th         2am to hospital and 6:15 Deborah Grace, Took the children to see her in the afternoon.
19th         Grandma did Jonathan's birthday party for six boys. Katy has a bad leg.
20th         Katy has thrombosis. Visited in the evening after Jonathan taken to GOS. He is to continue anti-epileptic medication. Rachel to another party.
21st         Katy home but has to elevate legs for a week. Registered the birth.
22nd       Deb not settled until 11:30pm.
23rd       Bill Clark preached at WEC. Lunch with Jeffries. Deb not settled after 3pm.
24th       Doctor came and ordered ambulance as Katy has thrombosis. Stayed with her until admitted to Barnett hospital. Ian Cameron Swan and his wife visited me.
25th        Took children to visit Katy.
26th        Discussing Amazing Grace Books plans at Welwyn then hospital visit.
27th        To Evangelical Press then IBM at Welwyn Garden City for a repair manual. Hospital again.
28th        Children had a day off school and were pleased to see snow. Last swimming lesson. Davis disappointed not to have his swimming a length recognised. Hospital visit.
29th        Children love playing in snow. Hospital visit.
30th        Bill Clark not the best exegesis at WEC. Lunch at McDonalds. Met with Leapers visiting Katy.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

The illiberal state

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Coalition for Marriage


Dear marriage supporter,
Ofsted could fail a school if a teacher says they back the repeal of same-sex marriage.
That’s the effect of new guidance the Government is consulting on right now. Initially it just applies to independent schools, but it’s only a matter of time before it is applied to all schools in England through Ofsted’s common inspection framework.
The proposed guidance says it will be a breach of the school standards if a school curriculum “suggests that same-sex marriages or civil partnerships should not be recognised as being lawful unions under civil law” (see the draft guidance, para. 20).
Teachers will be gagged. Children will be indoctrinated. Even teachers who give views for and against could fall foul of this approach. This will dramatically escalate the high-profile clashes between Ofsted and schools with a Christian or Jewish ethos.
This is an outrageous proposal. Politically-correct Whitehall bureaucrats are testing our defences. This is the most audacious attack on supporters of traditional marriage since same-sex marriage was legalised in 2013. If ever there was a case of LGBT overreach this is it.
By standing together we can defeat this proposal. And we will defeat it. Next week we’ll let you know what you can do. But in the meantime, please consider making a donation to our work.
With your help we can take a stand for marriage and back people like us who believe marriage is between a man and a woman.