LifeLine Community Church 

Tanya Farrugia: Journey of Breakthroughs

 

Tanya had always struggled with feelings of anxiety and fear. This is the story of her breakthroughs and this is a journey that she is still on....in her own words.
 
"One underlying fear has always been if I really let go and surrender that something bad will happen.  As a result I have tried to control things to protect myself.
 
DOULOS
For me deciding to do Doulos was about laying down my plans and dreams and surrendering them to God’s plans and dreams - not an easy decision for me because I was effectively saying to God to have His way - whatever happens (‘good’ or ‘bad’). One of my faith goals was to trust God more and not be in control.
 
THE LUMP

Doulos weekend Neil was talking about faith, we all stood up to pray and felt a lump in my face. Mixed feelings of fear and then the words ‘opportunity to trust’. This was a struggle. I was afraid it would be cancer. One of my big fears. I was very anxious about this and distracted during the weekend.
 
IMPENDING OPERATION
The doctor sent me for a biopsy which was inconclusive and I was referred to have an operation to remove the lump and a lymph gland (effectively a facelift operation). I was fearful and anxious with all the ‘what ifs’. The elders came to pray and asked what do you want us to pray / what is God saying? Interestingly I didn’t ask for healing or for God to take away the lump at that point, I asked that God would help me to trust him, to not be afraid. David and I felt it was a process He wanted me to go through.
 
SURROUNDED WITH LOVE - BROTHERS AND SISTERS
At this point there was an overwhelming love and support from brothers and sisters, friends saying “we are with you”, committed, people praying, going out of their way to have the boys, (and dog!), coming to the hospital with me, praying (children too), texting, words of encouragement and prophetic words, arranging meals to be cooked and delivered and much more. We as a family felt surrounded. Even some people we didn’t know very well. At one point Peter said “we are getting VIP treatment”.
 
THE ORIGINAL OPERATION DAY- a few days before Christmas
On the day of the op I was very anxious but at the same time David was with me and I was receiving encouraging texts. I was choosing to stand on words that God was bringing - ‘Perfect love casts out fear’ and that God has a good and perfect plan and that sometimes pain is for a higher purpose (more than just our comfort). Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil”. Also pictures that God would carry me safely through. Lots of prophetic words were really encouraging to read over at this time - I had them all written down over time.

After waiting all day the surgeon called us in and said they can’t do it today - that they would reschedule by post. This felt like a turning point. We just thought ‘God can do anything’ and David and I both felt happy and expectant.
 
THE ACTUAL OPERATION DAY
Thanking God that we were able to have Christmas with friends which would have been hard after the operation, recovering. It was rescheduled for the day before Joshua’s birthday with an overnight stay. However, a bit nervous but this day was serene and went smoothly and had a different feel. The surgeon had said I would be in pain after the operation even with medication and that my neck would leak when I eat. Thankful that people prayed and I didn’t need the painkillers, that the neck leak only happened a few days and that I didn’t need the neck drain which meant I was sent home early and able to be home for Joshua’s birthday. And no painkillers were needed. Also an amazing sense (as God had promised) of peace and of God with me, close. This really released hope and a sense of that God is trying to say something about not dreading the worst but trusting Him and expecting good things. This is similar to when I had gone to Iraq - I had a big list of fears (real and imagined) on one side and on the other side “trust Me’. The only bit I had needed to listen to was the “trust Me”. Iraq was a choice but this situation with the diagnosis was not a choice. However the same the same thing - A big list of fears versus “TRUST ME”
 
This opened up a sense of adventure - not just to survive without fear but that God is a good father and He will do amazing things - more than we can ask or imagine when we trust Him. I remember having the thought - “don’t settle here” - what if God healed me now? There was a sense of God wanting to go further - that God had more to do and for me to learn. Someone had suggested that God has a purpose that is higher than our own comfort. Also we had been given words that this it wasn’t just about me but for my family too.  God is bigger than my problem.
 

In difficult moments I have also found it helpful to read over words that had been given to me, and pictures that helped me to visualise trusting Him that God had given me in advance…
MDCCAnyon1GoodFatherEarstwitch     MDCcanyon2decidingtostepout     MDCcanyon3runstoJesus
DIAGNOSIS
Saw consultant who told us it is lymphoma which is a form of cancer. An aggressive form but treatable if found early. Remember looking at doctor, hearing him but also thinking ‘But GOD'  What does God say?  
Consultant was on Tuesday followed by a whirlwind of appointments, nurse giving me lots of info, a trip to a London hospital to have scans to determine the stage of the cancer. By Friday I was having chemotherapy.
 
However in the midst of all this there was treasure - David was able to come with me and be supportive and spend time together, have lunch out (!),  people kicked into action and we were shown so much love, meals being made, the boys taken care of, picked up from school, so much love and care. Flowers delivered, gifts, prayers. A real commitment from others meant we felt very connected and the boys felt loved and cared for in a new way, not just by us as parents but by our whole community.
 
Now I am going through the treatment and God has said a few times that He will see me through safely. We are standing on this. We were told of all the possible side effects but we are thankful that these have been minimal, based on the verse that says you can drink poison and it won’t harm you.
 
CELEBRATION
The day before the second chemo session we saw the consultant to find out the stage of the lymphoma (we had to wait, he was over an hour late seeing us!). We had been nervous about this and people had been praying for peace whatever the result. He called us in and said the results had not yet come in. Just as he said this the email pooped up on the screen and he told us it was just stage 1A - best result - that the surgeon had done a great job and removed all the lumps and that there was nothing else found in my body or in my bone marrow! He said the chemo course would continue as planned, with a 90% expectation of being cured. This was a great encouragement to us but still the chance to continue trusting God.
 
BATTLE
One morning, before the first chemo, it struck me that this is a battle and I set up a group of warriors based on a picture a friend had had of an ugly creature in the dessert with me and warriors chasing it and it was running away (it was small). I see this creature as fear and that is what we are battling and it is important that we join together to chase it out and this is for more than just me. God has not given us a spirit of fear but of love, power and a sound mind.  God wants to leave no stone unturned so that we are free from fear, not hiding as captives to fear. I am thankful for this group of people praying faithfully, hearing God and reminding me of what God has said when I am struggling. Praise and thankfulness is key - A word was brought - as we stand and we praise Him (Jehoshaphat) -God fights our battle.
 
I wouldn’t have chosen this route but I wouldn’t change it - many times I have felt God closer than ever, more peace and joy than ever. The fear and dread that I was living with when nothing was wrong was much worse than being diagnosed with cancer. I am learning to let go of control and through that have peace because God is who He says He is. And God is opening up connections and conversations with others too.
 
BACKTRACK IN TIME - before the diagnosis
Before any of this happened God had been preparing me, beneath the fear of illness, cancer, and something bad happening that I needed to step out and trust Him, and through pictures and prophecies from others and my own drawings (Moo D Cow ones above) that He was going to take me through something but see me (and us as a family through) safely from one side to the other. Although I was anxious about this, the words and pictures provided encouragement and still do. For example a picture my mentor gave me as Doulos started was that God would carry me from one point to another by God, safely and that I couldn’t do it on my own."
 
Click here to see the rest of the images God gave Tanya on this journey. 


Tanya Farrugia, 27/03/2018


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Sam & The Tiger: Youth Weekend Away

 

From the 2nd to the 4th of March the Lifeline Youth went on a weekend away to Carroty Wood. During this time we had insightful and inspirational teachings from our wise leaders. We also had fun activities like runouts. This all seems to have been perfect, however the enemy threw an attack in my direction.

On the first night, during a snowball fight, I sprained my shoulder by landing on it badly and had to go to hospital and stay there until early the next morning. However, the support of the family that is my youth group combined with the comfort and security found in the presence of God filled me with peace and optimism.

I felt no bitterness towards my friend who accidentally injured my shoulder and that only really is possible with the supernatural influence of God. I’ve realised, after hearing about it in Church, that this was intended to be a distraction by the enemy, but God enabled me to drown that out with the beautiful prophetic words our leaders brought to each and every one of us.

My prophetic word was a picture of a tiger, desperate to run into what God has next for me, and if I’m totally honest, I’ve struggled in finding what that is.

When my PE teacher asked me what happened to my shoulder, I told him the story. He then asked what else we did on this weekend away, so I told him about how the leaders gave us prophetic words. He then asked what my prophetic word was, so I told him. His response was to ask “So what does God have for you next? Starting a revival at St. Edward’s maybe?” I’ve found it quite exciting that my teacher might be seeing what God has for me and although ‘Starting a revival at St. Edwards’ seems a daunting task, I’d like to see what that entails and I’m hoping I’ll be helped with that by learning more about sharing with others in Church. 


Sam Dixon, 21/03/2018


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When the Holy Spirit met our young people 

 
Our young people meet together every Friday evening to explore what it means to know and love God. Recently, Mike Stevens joined them for a time of worship and seeking God. Mike is a friend of LifeLine's leader John - together they were part of pioneering a new way of doing church in the 1970s and saw God move powerfully.
When Mike was with the young people the Holy Spirit came and they had an amazing time together.

Here are some snippets about meeting with Holy Spirit that night, some of them for the first time.


Reminded of God's character and what being in His presence feels like.

At first I was disappointed and started crying because I felt that everyone else was being filled with the Spirit apart from me. I walked out to get tissues and someone saw me and said “so I see the Holy Spirit has touched you”. I said “no nothing happened” and then she said “well we can’t have that”! so she prayed for me and the minute she said ‘amen’ I jumped up and said “let’s go praise the Lord”! I’m thanking God for being filled with joy. Also that it was so amazing.

I felt a warmth in my stomach when someone prayed. I am thanking God for sharing the Holy Spirit with me and being with me. But I would like more next time because I think God could do more.

On Friday when I was prayed for I was filled with the Holy Spirit. At first I was feeling disappointed as I didn’t feel anything, but when I was suddenly filled, I felt like God was healing my wounds. I am thankful that God finally filled me. 

I got prayed for and started speaking in tongues and got filled with joy. It felt warm and I feel happy. I’m thanking God for filling me and being there for me.

Filled with the Holy Spirit. Spoke in tongues for the first time. Fell over. Got a picture and spoke with God but didn't really know what he said. She says it was scary and shocking but good. While she was on the floor, others around her said she was speaking in tongues. 

I normally struggle with sleep but I had a good nights sleep on Friday for the first time that week. 

Felt a sense of peace come over her after receiving prayer. 

Has been feeling a bit down recently and has had a negative mindset. God gave her joy on Friday and she was filled with laughter. Although life has still been hard she has seen a difference in mindset. 

[This youth was absent the day but shared other times when he felt God presence through the spirit]
Boom day away – filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke in tongues for the first time.
Soul survivor – my father was filled with the joy of the Lord which passed through me, and we passed it on to a lot of people. I felt filled
Clear sound – I felt filled with the spirit and was praying to God. Someone was playing the violin and I looked up, and by the side of him I saw three large angels singing/humming along with him. I felt very close to God.
Church – At church one Sunday we were singing ‘Here I am’ and I was joyfully crying as I was filled with the Spirit and I looked through the window and there were angels circling the church. I was speaking in tongues.
For all of these I am thankful that he has shown his love for me in situations where I wouldn’t expect anything to happen. I am also thankful that he loves me and he has let me know his love for me.


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Old Testament Law & the Charge of Inconsistency 


I love quiet mornings like this one. I sat at my kitchen table in my new suit. A classic fit, single breasted two-buttoned navy blue Charles Tyrwhitt. 77% wool, 23% linen.
With my cup of steaming coffee and bacon butty.  I watch the gentle breeze sway the leaves of the green beans and tomato plants in the vegetable patch just outside the back door.
 
As I open my bible I pray my usual prayer “search me, God, see if there is any offensive way in me”.
I stroke my neatly trimmed beard as I thumb through the pages.
 
This is when it dawns on me…I’ve just broken 4 commands before breakfast!
Do not wear clothes of wool and linen woven together. (Deu 22:11)
The pig is also unclean… You are not to eat their meat (Deu 14:8)
Do not plant your field with two kinds of seed (Lev 19:19)
Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard. (Lev 19:27) 
So if we honestly believe “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness” (2 Tim 3:16) how do I justify living contrary to these verses?!
 
How do we pleased God through honouring the scripture? How do we interpret these verses? Which commands still apply?
 
If you have any of these questions – you may find THIS ARTICLE by Tim Keller helpful…
 
It may just avert us stoning to death our rebellious children (Deu 21:20-21)

jamieS
 


Jamie Singleton, 03/08/2017


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"I love Kingdom Community and shared life..." 


Leah Pacleb reflects on her 4 month immersive visit
 

Leah-Pacleb   Why are you here?
I came here as a representative for my father, Leroy and the Philippines for the Pilgrimage 17 conference. Prior to my coming here, John and Dawn Singleton spoke of this program called Doulos and that I should do it when I have the chance but due to some pre scheduled commitments, I couldn’t be here for when the course started in October. Since I was coming late into the program, I thought I was just sitting in on the last few classes that I was here for but what I did not expect was for this intense 10 month program to be crammed into the 6 weeks after the Pilgrimage 17 conference.

What was the highlight of the Pilgrimage 17 conference?
I looked forward to the morning bible study and it turned out to be my favorite out of the whole weekend. The messages from Mark, Keith and Prince were very powerful and each leader made such an impact because I related to every single one of them in various ways. God placed us in different parts of the world but Norma summed it up nicely for me, “We were born because God has a purpose we have to align with.” He brought us together for His purpose.  Meals felt like an entire clan has come together for family reunion. It was a lovely time catching up with the people I have met from the previous time and meeting new friends as well.


What do you hope to take away from here?
A fine tuning of God’s ‘phone line’ so that I can hear Him better when He communicates with me. Lifeline is this training ground for me to try and apply as much of the things that I have learned in the kingdom way and have the people I’m accountable to guide me along the way.
What is your vision to reshape the work in Miami and the Philippines?
Being exposed to the activities that surrounds Lifeline gives me a new insight on how to deal with certain things in Miami and the Philippines. Specifically on how to reach out to the community, I love the idea of families being together while learning English but it has to be altered in the Philippines because learning English is not a big issue but the idea of spending time with your family and doing things together can bring closeness to the community. Volunteering in the Corner Coffee House also gives that different approach in meeting people outside of church.

What are your reflections on the lifeline community? What have you observed and picked up?
I really love the execution of kingdom community and shared life. I feel like it is something everyone in the community should be very privileged about in being a part of. Experiencing shared life for a month already has its benefits, I’ve been held accountable numerous times for the convictions that I have shared with my mentors and I’m growing because of that. I’ve been away from my family for 3 months now going on 4 months. It is the first time that I have been away from home for so long but I never felt homesick at all because being here felt like being home. Lifeline makes you feel like you’re part of this gigantic family.  Everybody has gone out of their way to put my needs before their own and it is very humbling.


Leah Pacleb, 30/06/2017


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Happy & Healthy @ The Hub     

By Judi Singleton


judi-bethany   Screen Shot 2016-11-06 at 2107 

I’m passionate about reaching out to people where they are. I like to help them find freedom from things which can hold us captive, such as fear, anxiety, stress or illness. That’s why a friend and I started running a group called Happy & Healthy, where we explore all aspects of health, and our relationship with our health – not just our physical wellbeing, but also our emotional and spiritual health.  Happy and Healthy also includes a class called Stretch & Tone which is based on Pilates, and also a circuit training session. 
 
This means a lot to me is because there were times when stress, fear and anxiety ruled my life, and I didn’t always realise how much.  I’m a Christian, in a happy marriage and part of an amazing church community but I really struggled to let go of issues, suffering physical and emotional stress related illness, and a lack of peace and joy. 
 
When I stopped working to have children, I had built my value around the work I had been doing, not who I am, so I really struggled when that came to an end.  However, God has brought me on a journey towards wholeness, showing me my value, releasing me from fear and anxiety, and teaching me to enjoy relationships and life by trusting Him and the people around me more. 
 
Happy and Healthy runs at The Hub – our vibrant community centre on Bennetts Castle Lane.  I started going there when I had my first child, five years ago, and since then I’ve been going at least once a week most weeks!  I’ve met a lot of people and have enjoyed varied activities for myself and for my children.  The crèche is a time where my children have really benefitted from the care and enthusiasm of other volunteers. They give their time to set up fun activities and look after the children while I’ve been enjoying some adult company!  It’s also made a great difference for my children as they’ve settled into pre-school and nursery.
 
Come and join us – discover a Happy and Healthy way.

FREE.  Tuesdays, 9:30-10:10
163 Bennetts Castle Lane, Dagenham.

TheHubLogoMaster
 


Judi Singleton, 06/11/2016


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