Pastor's Blog 

Welcome to our blog.  Each week (give or take) we will publish a blog, which will also feature in the church's "weekly news".
 

 

LOCKDOWN – THE GREAT ESCAPE

So – have you booked a holiday yet?  Have you made plans around the timetable to exit lockdown?

Last Monday the Prime Minister outlined some key dates as the steps to take for life to be opened up again.  From schools re-opening their doors on March 8th through to the removal of all social constraints on June 21st – there is a plan to see us move from where we are to where we want to be.

Whether you feel able to plan things with any certainty will vary depending on who you are and what you are planning.  But changes are coming – encouraging changes.  It is good to have a timetable laid out – even though we realise that there are still concerns and uncertainties.  We need to continue praying for our leaders as they implement this, as they review it at each stage and as they continue to have to make decisions that affect us all.

So changes are coming; I acknowledged the need for change in last week’s weekly news.  We will talk more about what that means for the church over the coming days.  As we emerge from lockdown we can open up again – and that sense of being “open” is going to be important over the coming weeks and months. 

The church is many things – but the image that seems so significant is that of being a “city on a hill”.  We are family, we are an army, we are the bride of Christ – all pictures of the church.  But we need to be that city on a hill – especially as we emerge from lockdown. A place that is bright, that is visible, that is welcoming. We are the salt and light – and we need to shine out for Him.
 

Chris

28/02/21
 

 

CHANGE

Change is coming.

Whether we like it or not – change is coming.  In the present climate we all hope for some things to change, I’m sure: 

  • Change that will see us break out of the enforced isolation. 
  • Change that will allow us to meet loved ones, move our lives forward. 
  • Change that – for our key workers and health professionals especially – will allow there to be light and space to breathe more easily.

And yet even these changes can bring fear. Uncertainty because months of living with a virus might make us cautious.  What will the future hold?

Change is coming…

But we have spoken already about the need to look forward.  Society will have changed as we exit lockdown.  We will have changed.  The church has the opportunity to look forward and change – but only with a view to best serving the vision that God has put in us,

We are here to build a strong healthy vibrant church and to reach out to the community.  God has given us a purpose, and a community to serve.  The times change, and we need to learn to change, while always holding to the vision rooted in an unchanging God.  He is the one who gives us hope.  He is our anchor through the troubled times – He is the same yesterday, today and forever. 

As we look forward, change may happen, change will happen, but our security is certain.

Bless you

Chris

21/02/21
 

 

ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE

It’s Valentine’s Day – and a celebration of the romantic. Love is in the air – and love, as we know, changes everything…!

Song titles apart – St. Valentine’s Day is undoubtedly associated with love.  The man who is celebrated was thought to be a priest or bishop who ministered to persecuted Christians under the Roman Empire.  Why he has become associated with love doesn’t seem to have a convincing explanation – but undoubtedly that association has come. 

You either embrace the idea of St Valentine’s Day, or you don’t.  For some who have loved and lost, or never yet loved – it can all be very pointed and rather sad.  For young lovers enjoying their time together it can be a delightful opportunity to celebrate.

But as it highlights the idea of relationship – this day can build up or knock down – as we reflect on the relationships we ourselves have.

The bible talks about relationships. The idea of love permeates the book and jumps off the pages.  God is, after all, love.  He exhibits love. He cannot help but love.  The relationship between Him and us, and the relationships between those of us who follow him should be built on love.  But of course we are now shifting attention from romantic love, to the perfect, sacrificial, enduring love described by the word AGAPE.

Agape is complete love.  Total love.   Unending love.  Not weak, not wishy-washy.  Not ethereal or insubstantial.  Love that persists.  Try reading 1 Corinthians 13 again – you will have read it or heard it before.  Love that makes a difference.

Whatever you think of St Valentine’s Day,  the bible is clear.  “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.  And the greatest of these is love.”

Chris

14/02/21