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June 2017

June 24, 2017

Thoughts From The Cottage

Dear Friends

Nearly two years ago twenty-one of us met in the Concourse on a Sunday evening to discuss the future of the church. The group unanimously agreed to revitalise the church recognising that would require more commitment, more effort and changes to what we do and how we do it.

Somethings have happened, notably the appointment of Louise as our Mission & Outreach work. The launch of Messy Church & Café Church, the experimentation with digital music for worship by way of video clips and the revival of the prayer calendar. A few people have put a lot of effort into these and other initiatives and this deserves to be lauded and needs to be encouraged and developed. Other changes such as trying to encourage more of a family atmosphere by sitting closer together and nearer the front have met with fierce opposition whilst attendance at worship and other church activities has gone down.

The message is mixed so where do we go from here. Obviously we need to continue to listen to God and discern where he is leading us. I sense that there are three things we should be concentrating on in the short term and these are worship, prayer and evangelism, and they are all inter=related.

We need to pray for more musicians and more people able to prepare and deliver the worship presentations incorporating video clips. Our worship leaders, both preachers and musicians, work hard to help us to worship God as he deserves and we need to continue to support them by our attendance, encouragement and prayer. We need to be ready to worship God with, as it were, arms open wide to receive what gifts he has to offer us rather than, as it were, arms folded rejecting the gifts on offer. Worship is not about us, it is about God. It is not about what we get out of it but what God gets out of it. We must give God the praise and worship that he is due.

There is much prayer, both formal and informal, in the Beacon. However at times the balance between prayer and business is wrong and at times we are guilty of asking God to bless our plans rather than discerning his plans for us. If we spend more time in formal prayer seeking God’s mind we will need less time in meeting business because we are tuned into God. Equally if we all spent two minutes in prayer before the preacher comes into lead worship our worship would be better.

Then there is evangelism. It is the task of every Christian to tell people about Jesus through their words and through their deeds. Most of us are good at the latter and poor at the former. Somehow we have to redress the balance and tell others of the part Jesus plays in our lives. Doing so is a duty not an option but surely we would all want to tell other people about that which matters to us most – our faith.

Ian

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