Adventures of Matt and Pippa

Matt and Pippa Perkins DO London!!!!

Friday, October 27, 2006


... yep, thats what the 3 year wedding anniversary is! Leather! I can even think of a lot of presents one could receive for this special anniversary!! Like shoes, belts, handbags, a leather jacket! But Matt and i just do cards and a meal... normally!

This year, with the cunning plotting and encouragement from Phil, and the idea of Matt of going out for the day to Brighton, i secretly booked a lush posh hotel, 4 * which for us, who've only been in hotels about twice ever, is posh! We had a gorgous time, a mini-break, half term being near matts birthday and our anniversary is always good as we get to take time off!

Reflections on 3 years of marriage, i know it's not thirty, but it's over halfway to five years, so i want to blog my thoughts and learnings already...

I am more selfish than i ever imagined before i got married!
I am growing in my ability to be secure in my husbands love
I am thankful to God for such a gentle, calm, kind husband
I am more submissive now than 2003 but nowhere near as much as i'd like!
We are more able to communicate and talk and be open and vulnerable than 3 years ago.
We have less arguments than in the past 2 years
We have more of a balance of ministry and rest than in previous years, of prioritising time together aswell as time given out for others, instead of sacrificing that precious time together
We are more established as a couple in a new place where no-one previously knew us as single
Marriage is harder work than i ever imagined or thought
I like marriage more than i did the first 2 years
I love Matt more than i did on our wedding day
We have grown more godly in Gods grace though nowhere near as much as we'd like to be!
We don't exactly know what the future holds for us but we do know God is all we need, He is our everything and He has it sorted and together we continue our adventure with Him.

Monday, October 23, 2006


Latest sightings:

Justin Hawkins, in Pizza Express... eating!

David Walliams, coming out of the corner shop in West Hampstead...walking!

Jules Oliver, in Sainsburys... shopping!

Contributor - PP

Friday, October 20, 2006

German wedded bliss!!!

AHHHHH!! Ralf and Julia sent through some of their wedding photos, very lovely to see, as we couldn't get to Germany to be with them due to holiday club and holiday club service at the end of August! They are coming to visit soon and we're so excited!! It's so cool as they met at our wedding nearly 3 years ago!!! AHHHHHHH!!!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Get up and move...

I love my comfort zone - it's safe, quite, nice and pippa-ish. But i also hate my comfort zone and long to break out of it, more and more. To go on adventures, do crazy wild things, do the things i don't want to do and don't think i can do... for Jesus and his gospel. I'm gonna ask God to take me out of my comfort zone and further into the battleground, to experience his faithfulness, for my future here on earth and in heaven. To experience his provision and care and great unfailing love for me. What can go wrong? Lots, in my mind, but not in Gods already planned history and all encompassing control and care and grace. Here goes...

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

On Beauty...

I love the girl talk site... found this gem!

Consider with me our culture’s physical beauty yardstick--for women then and women now as explained by author David Powlison:
A hundred years ago women might have compared themselves with the other ten girls in the village. Today, women compare themselves with pictures of the cream of the worldwide fashion industry.
And what ideal image does the worldwide fashion industry put forth as the standard for beauty by which today’s woman is to measure herself?

The Dove Campaign got it partially right—the fashion industry has certainly contributed to a distorted perception of beauty. And yet, their solution—“every girl deserves to feel beautiful just the way she is”—is well-meaning and yet fundamentally unbiblical.
You see, women believe that physical beauty will make them happy, successful, popular among the women, desirable to the men – so they pursue it with a fury!
Physical beauty, however, does not deliver as advertised. Proverbs 31:30 reveals the falsehood and the futility of this quest for beauty: Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain.
Even if every girl did “feel beautiful just the way she is,” it wouldn’t bring her true joy or lasting happiness or solve even one of her problems.
Truth be told, what we all deserve is not to feel beautiful but rather to be condemned to hell for sinfully seeking to attract the worship of our fellow creatures instead of living to bring glory to God.
God did not send Jesus to this earth to die so that women could get over their self-esteem problem and feel better about themselves. No, He sent his Son to die to rescue us from our sinful, futile quest for physical beauty and to reveal to us the satisfaction that comes from knowing God—whether we are beautiful or not!
What freedom and hope is found in Christ! We don’t need to feel beautiful about ourselves to find happiness! In fact, we’re better off not even thinking about ourselves. Rather, God has offered us in Jesus Christ forgiveness, hope, freedom from sin and a joy that never ends.
So while this little video effectively exposes the false front of beauty presented by our culture, let’s not look to Dove’s advertising executives for the solution to the beauty crisis. Rather, let’s join the campaign to tell others of the true freedom found only in Christ!

Fearfully and wonderfully made...

Psalm 139:13, 14 says: "You knit me together in my mother's womb; I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. As Juliette soon gives birth and many at church and in our family are pregnant, babies are everywhere! Isn't that a wonderful verse!Whenever I see a baby, I always feel a breathless awe of how the baby looks. Every little finger and toe...and the tiny heart beat! Only God could have done that! Only God can "knit" each piece into place.God created me; He formed me, and knew everything about me even before I was born. He knew what I was going to look like and He designed me with special gifts and talents that He wants me to use for Him (Romans 12: 6, 1Peter 4:10). AMAZING!

Friday, October 06, 2006


Found this great article by Jerry Bridges...

'It is because of Christ's death in our place that we do not experience the wrath of God which we so richly deserve. Jesus satisfied God's justice and turned away God's wrath from us by bearing it Himself on our behalf. Now God can extend mercy to us without subverting His justice. Mercy and justice meet together at the cross.'

' When I was a boy growing up in East Texas, we lived near some railroad tracks. In those days, homeless men (whom we called hoboes) often rode the rail cars from town to town. Occasionally, one of those men would show up at our front door and ask my mother for a meal. Without asking any questions, Mother would go to the kitchen and prepare a plate of food for him. She gave it freely, without requiring any "work for food" on his part. She didn't ask him to mow the grass, trim the hedges, or wash the windows. She gave freely without any consideration or conditions.
Was my mother's kindness an act of grace? It was certainly a gracious, benevolent act, but it hardly qualified as an act of grace in the biblical sense. We often define grace as God's unmerited favor and set grace in opposition to works, as in "We are saved by grace, not by works." If we hold to the simple definition of unmerited favor, though, my mother's gift of a plate of a food would qualify as grace. The hobo did nothing to earn it. The food was entirely unmerited on his part. So why do I say that mother's kindness was not grace?
To answer that question, let me take the story of my mother and the hobo into the realm of fiction. One day a hobo shows up at our front door, again asking for food. This time, however, mother recognizes him as the man who had robbed our home some weeks before. Instead of going to the phone to call the police, she again goes to the kitchen and prepares a plate of food. She gives it to him with no questions asked and no work required.
You can readily see that a new element has been introduced into the story. Now there is not only the lack of merit but more importantly there is the presence of demerit. The hobo not only does not deserve the food, in the sense of having worked for it; he actually deserves to be apprehended and punished for his crime. Mother's gift of a plate of food in these circumstances moves us toward the real meaning of divine grace.
God's grace addresses itself not merely to the absence of merit but to the presence of demerit. To understand divine grace, we must see it as more than unmerited favor. The idea of demerit is an essential element in the biblical meaning of grace. In our relationship with God, there is either merit for obedience or demerit for disobedience, but there is no such thing as "unmerit." There is either merit or demerit but no unmerit.
In our case, of course, there is no merit. Even our best deeds are stained with sin, and in a strict view of justice, we deserve to be punished rather than rewarded. That is why the Apostle Paul wrote of us that in our condition before salvation, "We were by nature objects of wrath" (Ephesians 2:3).
Since the concept of demerit is essential to an understanding of grace, I propose the following definition: Grace is God's favor through Christ to people who deserve His wrath. In this definition, the deserving of wrath picks up the idea of demerit, while the concept of God's favor is still retained.

Now let's go back to the fictitious story of the hobo who robbed our house but still received a free meal. I indicated that this scenario moved toward the meaning of grace. However, it still falls woefully short of illustrating God's grace to us. Let me give you several reasons why.
First, although my mother would have been personally violated (people who have been robbed often say that they feel they have been personally violated) by the hobo's robbery, it would not have been her law that was broken. If he were apprehended and brought to trial, the case would have been called "The State of Texas vs. Joe Hobo." It would not have been "Mrs. Bridges vs. Joe Hobo" because, although my mother had been wronged, it is the state's law that has been broken. At the same time, although it is the state's law that has been broken, we cannot say that the state has been wronged.
With God, however, His person and His law come together. It is His law that we break. Even though our sin may adversely affect someone else, it is still an affront to God personally as well as a violation of His law. When God sent the prophet Nathan to confront David about his adultery with Bathsheba and the murder of Uriah, Nathan said, "Why did you despise the word of the Lord by doing what is evil in His eyes?" and "The sword will never depart from your house because you despised Me" (2 Samuel 12:9-10). David in his sin despised both God's law and His person.
In our fictitious story of the hobo robber, we can say that he despised the law of the State of Texas and he despised my mother. But he didn't rob the state, and he didn't break my mother's law. David violated Bathsheba and had her husband Uriah murdered, but in so doing, he despised both God's law and God's person. Sin is more than breaking God's law. It is aggravated assault upon the infinite dignity of His person. Because of this, we deserve His wrath, but instead we receive His favor. That is grace.
The second reason our story does not fully illustrate grace is that my mother had neither the power nor authority to execute justice. All she could do was call the police and hope the man would be apprehended, convicted, and sent to prison. She might be called upon to testify at his trial, but she could not execute justice. But God can. God has both the authority and power to punish sin. Jesus said, "Be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in hell" (Matthew 10:28). God could have consigned all of us to hell, as He did the angels who sinned (2 Peter 2:4). But He gives us eternal life instead. That's grace.
Now let's introduce another factor into the story. Suppose my mother had recognized the man not only as the one who had robbed our home but as one who was suspected of robbing other neighborhood homes as well. Now she would have a civic duty to call the police. Suppose she would have said to herself, "I know this man has probably robbed other homes in the area, but I feel sorry for him. He probably has a wife and children back home. I'll just quietly give him the food and send him on his way." If Mother had acted that way, she would have essentially subverted justice. She would have subverted justice in the interest of mercy.
God, however, cannot exercise mercy at the expense of His justice. He cannot choose simply to overlook sin because He feels sorry for us. God's justice must be satisfied. Yet many people seem to have that concept of grace. They think of God as loving and kind, as one who will pardon our sins without regard to justice. But if God pardoned our sins in that manner, that would not be grace. That would be a miscarriage of justice.
There is still one more important difference between the hobo and ourselves. In the story, the hobo was knocking at my mother's door asking for food. In our relationship with God, we were not knocking at His door seeking salvation. As the Scripture says, "There is no one who seeks God" (Romans 3:11). Instead of seeking God, we were trying to avoid Him. Today some speak of those without Christ as "seekers." The truth is, though, that whenever an unbeliever is seeking God, it is because God has first sought him. We were dead in our sins (Ephesians 2:1). We cannot seek God until He first gives us life. God seeks us when we cannot and do not seek Him. That is grace.

Now let's return to my proposed definition of grace: God's favor through Christ to people who deserve His wrath. By His grace, we do not receive the wrath we deserve. Instead we receive the favor we don't deserve. Why is this true? The answer is found in the two words: through Christ. It is because of Christ's death in our place that we do not experience the wrath of God which we so richly deserve. Jesus satisfied God's justice and turned away God's wrath from us by bearing it Himself on our behalf. Now God can extend mercy to us without subverting His justice. Mercy and justice meet together at the cross.
Jesus did more, however, than satisfy God's justice and turn aside His wrath. By His perfect obedience, He earned for us all of God's favor, all of His blessings. To use the hobo illustration, He mowed the grass, trimmed the hedges, washed the windows and painted the porch. He did it all. He perfectly obeyed all the law of God, and He did it in our place. Just as He died in our place, so He also obeyed in our place. That is why those two words "through Christ" are so critical to the definition of grace. Without Christ's work for us, there could be no grace.
We also need to realize that God's favor to us through Christ is bountiful. It is much, much more than the hobo's plate of food. God receives us into His family as His sons and daughters and opens up the storehouse of His boundless riches to us. He has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in Christ and promised to meet all our needs according to His riches in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 1:3; Philippians 4:19). He invites us to come with confidence to His Throne of Grace to receive mercy and find grace to help in our time of need (Hebrews 4:16).
How should we react to this definition of God's grace? We should respond, first of all, with a deep sense of humility. We really do deserve God's wrath. The awareness of that fact should not only humble us before God but also before one another. In the realm of grace, there is no place for the horrible sin of self-righteous comparing of ourselves with other people. Even with respect to the most flagrant sinners around us, we ought to say in all humility and absolute truthfulness, "There but for the grace of God go I."
Then we should respond in profound gratitude. Not only have we been spared God's wrath, but we have also been given all His favor. Everything we are and everything we do that is of any value we owe to the grace of God. Dutch theologian G.C. Berkouwer said, "The essence of Christian theology is grace, and the essence of Christian ethics is gratitude." It is gratitude arising spontaneously from a heart filled with grace that motivates us to obey God and serve Him wholeheartedly.
We're not just undeserving, we're ill-deserving. We deserve wrath, but because of Christ, we receive God's bountiful blessing. Only when we understand that, do we understand grace. '

Jerry Bridges has served on the staff of the Navigators since 1955. He was elected Vice-President for Corporate Affairs in 1979, but in 1994 he resigned that position to devote all of his time to a Bible-teaching ministry. A popular speaker, he is also the author of several best-sellers, including The Pursuit of Holiness and The Practice of Godliness. His most recent work is The Joy of Fearing God. He and his wife, Jane, live in Colorado Springs, Colorado.