The Fourth Rocky Road Epistle Chapter 5

Back to normal – I hope not!

Our open-air service on Pentecost was a wonderful occasion and we could sing. Thank you to all who made it possible. If you were at home, unable to get out or avoiding the cold, you could still be part of that service and I hope you have taken the opportunities to link up with all the things that Roy and Nick so kindly provide. If you did not come, but are able to be out and about, what is the real reason you were not there? It is time for each of us to make the effort to play our part without excuses. A few of you said to me last week that you want everything to be back to normal, back to how things were. Whereas I hope that never happens!.

Let me explain with an example. In the last book of the Narnian stories “The Last Battle” by C.S. Lewis there is a tragic group of dwarves. They have gone through the door and are sat at the edge of a beautiful land which is equivalent to heaven. They refuse to go any further with everyone else. Tragically they do not want to know where they are and only want to live in the past, in what was normal. They close their minds and cannot see the sunlight or the flowers, they convince themselves that all they see is a dirty old stable.

The church is not a social club or a museum, it is part of Christ’s body on earth made up of people. We are people who have been through a pandemic and been changed by the experience. We should not close our minds, refusing to go on and wanting to live in the past. Rather we should be ready to play our part in seeking God’s way forward. Don’t just sit in a corner and moan, or even worse try and get others to join you. At least start by finding something to praise God for and share that with someone else.

Jesus challenged people with these words,

To what can I compare this generation? They are like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling out to others:
‘We played the pipe for you, and you did not dance;
we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn.’
(Matthew 11 v.16,17)

Are you sat on the edge or getting involved? Make sure you don’t get left behind. Your presence is an encouragement to others.

We are continuing with Zoom Bible Study fortnightly.

Next part of “Roaming through Romans” is on Wednesday 9th June.


Reflection

From Laura, “God is love – Trinity in Action” 1 John chapter 4 v.7-21

This Sunday is Trinity Sunday, a day when we pause to think about God who is three in one. In the passage John speaks of God sending his Son (v.9), so God the Father and God the Son. Then in v.13 God the Spirit is mentioned. Our great God is the triune God. Precisely how the three-in-one works is a mystery, but it should impact our lives. That should not be a problem for us, we use many things in our lives that are a mystery, for example I cannot explain how my phone works, but it impacts my life.

John explains what God is (v.8), what God did (v.10) and what God is doing (v.13).

What God is = God is love. Love involves relationships and throughout the passage there is the flow of love. God is love means there is love between each of the Trinity, love between God and us and love between His children.

What God did = God sent His Son. “God is love” is not simply a doctrine in the Bible; it is an eternal fact clearly demonstrated by Jesus dying for us on the cross.

What God is doing = doing something in us through the Holy Spirit who lives in us. The Spirit witnesses to us that God lives in us and that God loves us (v.13). We become witnesses of Jesus Christ being God’s Son (v.15), and through us there is a witness to others that God is love (v.21). The commentator, Dr Warren W Wiersbe, notes that “The world will not believe that God loves sinners until they see His love at work in His children’s lives.” Love for God and love for other people are two sides of the same coin, they go together. If we are born of God we share His nature, love. If we love God we will love one another, if we love one another then we will grow in our love for God.

One illustration of the Trinity that seems good is that of a dance. A dance speaks of movement and relationship between the dancers. The type of dance would be a circle dance where more people can join in. God invites us to share in the heavenly dance. We in turn invite others to dance.

Dancing is inclusive and keeps on growing. We cannot judge others and exclude them because we don’t think much of their dancing. Our dancing (or our lives) should witness to others and draw them to join in.

A dance is to be danced, we are not called to be spectators but to take part. Christianity is not a spectator sport. It involves us sharing in God’s love, otherwise we will not grow. This means commitment to others in the dance. Christianity is not a hobby but a way of life. It is no good starting and then deciding to sit down, you will trip everyone else up and probably get hurt.

A circle dance is everyone working together, the idea of doing it on your own is ridiculous. How do you show your love for your brothers and sisters if you do not bother to be involved with a church?


Please pray

For our Mission of the Month – Christian Aid.

This Thursday (27th) Margaret Shaw is going to be on the church carpark, near the entrance, doing some craft. She would love some others to join her for craft and chat. We pray that others from the local community would see this and want to join her as well. She will there in the afternoon – do check with her what time!


Planning ahead – proposed dates

Saturday 3rd July for a church "day", either lunch plus afternoon or morning and then lunch!
Church meetings following church on Sundays 25th July, 26th September and 28th November
Deacons' meetings on 13th June, 11th July, 12th September, 3rd October, 31st October and 5th December.
Open Air services on last Sunday in the month of June, July and August, weather permitting.

Communion services on first Sunday of the month.

What about changing the start time of the service to 10.30am? We will be looking at this at Deacons on 13th June, so if you want to contribute to the discussion, please speak to one of the deacons.