Kingdom over comfort

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Back at the turn of the year, we shared a blog post that talked about our desire for a lifestyle that more unconditionally reflects our convictions.

After much prayer – thanks to everyone who has supported us through our prayer updates – and after much discussion, and, ultimately, just deciding to take the plunge through our uncertainty, we have made the decision to move to Warrington and join Eden Latchford.

Every trip to Warrington has been hard work. Most of this has been because we’ve been constantly trying to process whether or not we want to move there. Underlying …

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This is part of a longer reflection on 2015 which Chris has put on his blog.
Feel free to read Looking back at 2015 at allaboutchris.org.

The bible is full of phrases like this:

“And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it.”
Mark 8:34-35

When I read a passage like that, I think: …

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Our friends in New York

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Our final experience of driving in America was our journey from Philadelphia to JFK airport. IMGP8105Obviously, we got lost, and arrived at the car hire drop-off at literally 12:31, crossing the line into late by 1 minute; luckily we managed to get away with this terrible crime with no further charges.

My takeaway from a month and 3,000 miles of driving in America? After paying $16 to cross the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, I’m never going to complain about the Dartford Crossing again!


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Our friends in Hawthorne Street

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Following on from our stay with the Simple Way, we visited members of InnerChange, also in Philadelphia. For the first time since arriving in America, that meant our drive between communities was just 10 minutes – a refreshing change from full days spent on the road.

IMGP7953Joen had been ill for two days in Charlotte, slowly getting better by Washington, but remaining very moany, unsettled and miserable for around 4 days. When we arrived at the Chris and Sam’s home, we were in desperate need of the feeling of “home”.

As we walked into the Baker Evens home …

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Our friends in Potter Street

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IMGP7907Three weeks on the road is definitely an action packed experience. A few days ago, we said goodbye to our new friends at Grace & Main in Danville, then stopped over briefly in Washington DC, before driving for another 3 hours further north.

The last 2 days we have been in Potter Street in Philadelphia, visiting the people and neighbourhoods of the Simple Way.

Most of you reading this will be familiar with the Simple Way: made internationally famous by Shane Claiborne’s book “Irresistible Revolution”. Pretty much every single person we have talked to on this trip …

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Our friends in Danville

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After our fantastic time with the guys at QC Family Tree, we drove a few more hours North, and arrived at Grace & Main Fellowship in Danville, Virginia.

IMGP7712Grace & Main is an intentional community that values hospitality highly. Starting around 5 years ago in response to a dangerously challenging book club, they now have several community houses spread across the city, and a community garden large enough to be thought of as an urban farm.

A small group of friends, they moved from book study to a practice they referred to as “Roving Feasts”, making tens of packed …

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Our friends in Enderly Park

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IMGP7670Fresh from our stay at Koinonia, we made our way to Charlotte, North Carolina, with a brief stopover in Atlanta. QC Family Tree were to be our latest victims hosts.

Pulling into the neighbourhood was a familiar feeling. Slightly tatty wooden houses, with cars in a similar state of disrepair, a populace very visible on the streets. Much like the majority of communities we’ve visited, QC Family Tree is located on the edge of empire, an area that once comprised a stable, well-off neighbourhood, now far less economically and socially prosperous.

Joen enjoying the free porch library

Joen enjoying the free porch library

It was …

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Our friends in Jefferson Street

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Following our first community visit, spending time in Mississippi, we arrived on Sunday afternoon at the Georgia based Alterna community.

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Previously, these doors were for male, female, and Negro.

Alterna is based in Lagrange, a town with one of the highest income disparities in the United States. In stark contrast to the rich suburbs filled with wealthy white families, there are high numbers of working poor, mostly African American, with a growing population of undocumented immigrants from Latin America. 

In response to this, Alterna is a bilingual community, with core members making a commitment to become fluent in

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Our friends in West Jackson

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“You gotta be born again. And again. And again.”
John M Perkins

John told us this as we sat on the porch, drinking coffee and talking about the commencement address he was about to give at Taylor University.

IMGP7307Its easy to forget how much of an icon he is whilst you sit with him, and laugh as he eats all the sweet potato, or tells you he doesn’t want any food, then steadily works his way through your fries. He has no airs and graces, no attitude of expecting you to honour his fame: he is humble, friendly and straight-forward.…

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Seeking questions

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This year has been a huge journey for our family. Rather than just a holiday trip, we’ve been taken on a voyage; there’s a sense we have that God is preparing us for a destination.

I don’t mean a physical place – although I do wonder where “home” will be in 5 or 10 years – but I feel God is shaking us down, getting us ready for a change of life.

Many of us experience a huge “about turn” when we first become believers: the word repentance literally means “to turn around”. I fear though, that all too often, …

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