Wednesday 15th April

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On the church website if you go to the ‘Galley’ page you can see the Easter crosses I have been sent so far. On YouTube listen to ‘Worthy is the Lamb - Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir’

We continue to read about the events of that first Easter Sunday: Luke 24: 13-35

These two people did not recognise that it was Jesus walking and talking with them. We, like them, often don’t recognise when Jesus is walking and talking with us. It was only later as they shared with each other and said (v.32) “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us…” that they recognised -the words they had heard were from Jesus, and we too perhaps need to recognise the importance of talking to each other about what we think Jesus might be saying to us.

In Pete Greig’s book ‘How to pray’ he suggests there are two questions we should ask ourselves whenever we wonder ‘Is that Jesus speaking to me?’ The first question to ask is: ‘Is this like Jesus?’ Is what is being said – what we are being asked to do - something we can imagine Jesus saying or doing? The second question is ‘What’s the worst that could happen if I were to get this wrong?’ I first heard this advice a number of years ago, and have continued to find these two questions really helpful in becoming bolder in responding to what Jesus might be saying to me.

So, for example, if we find that someone’s name keeps coming into our thoughts and we think ‘is that Jesus speaking to me’ asking me to contact them? We can easily answer the first question: ‘Is this like Jesus?’ While Jesus never phoned anyone, he did enjoy having conversations with people. So that is a ‘yes’ to the first question, and the second question ‘What is the worst that could happen?’ Well, you could end up with a phone call where neither of you have anything much to say to each other – not a very terrible consequence – so go for it – phone them!

But what if you find yourself considering whether Jesus is challenging you to give away next month’s income? – it is once again a ‘yes’ to the first question. We could easily imagine Jesus doing something so radical and kind, but what about the second question? There could be major consequences to such an action, so the thing to do, is to do what those on the road to Emmaus did – talk about it. Not just to your closest Christian friend, but talk about it to someone who you recognise as having a faith you admire – and as well as listening to the advice from other Christians, usually you will find that if it is Jesus talking to you, he will also send the same message in a number of different ways.

Some of you might be thinking ‘that’s all good advice’ but I never even feel the slightest indication that Jesus might be talking to me. In that walk to Emmaus, on that first Easter Sunday, Jesus “opened the scriptures” to them, and we can expect Jesus to do the same for us as we read our bibles. In the same book on ‘How to pray’ I read this: “Scripture is God’s way of initiating a conversation; prayer is our response.” As we read our bible’s, expect the words we read to have a relevance to the life we are living today, expect the scriptures to initiate a conversation with God.

In the lead up to Easter I was contact by a member of the congregation who said they had been prompted to ask me to share with church the importance of Romans 8: 28-39. Ron’s Maundy Thursday article had been written a few weeks earlier, before lockdown but brought to us the final part of that very scripture which someone else had felt God was prompting them to share with the church. 

“Scripture is God’s way of initiating a conversation; prayer is our response.”

Read Romans 8: 28-39 and expect Jesus to speak to you through these words. One of the conversations this passage initiates for me is to explore what it means to ‘Love God with all our heart, soul and strength.’ Perhaps you would like to share with me how this bible passage speaks to you.

In one of my earlier articles I suggested that you listen to a song about the love of Jesus, based on bible verses which compliment Romans 8: 37-39 – these verses are found in Ephesians 3: 14-19, perhaps you would like to listen to the song again (Rod & Graham have already found the music so we can learn it) YouTube: ‘How Vast the Love The Glorious Christ’

A prayer I often use in church services is:

Lord Jesus Christ, we thank you for all the benefits you have won for us

for all the pains and insults you have borne for us

Lord Jesus Christ, our Redeemer, Saviour & friend

help us to love you more dearly; hear you more clearly

and follow you more nearly, today and every day: Amen

If you are a Church Member, the Trustees need to notify you of the postponement of the Annual General Meeting (AGM). It has been rearranged for Wednesday 16th September (which is the 3rd Wednesday of the month). Nominations for new Trustees, Secretary and Treasurer will open on Sunday 23rd August, until then Office Holders will continue in their role for the additional 5 months.

I am trusting that even now Jesus is walking and talking with at least one of the Trustees, prompting them to write something for Friday and I look forward to writing to you again on Sunday.

Page last updated: 25th April 2020 12:00 PM