Category Archives: Minister’s Messages

Love Life, Live Lent

Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. (Matthew 4 v 1-2)

Dear Friends,

When you’ve eaten your pancakes on Shrove Tuesday, will that be the beginning or the end of your Lenten activities?

Last year I acquired a booklet called LOVE LIFE, LIVE LENT. It gave ideas throughout Lent based on that title, and it was not about giving something up, except perhaps giving up our time to use it for something better than what we usually do with it.

Lent is linked to the time Jesus was in the desert and was tempted. He went through suffering to give him the strength and resolve to tell the Good News about the love of God to the people he would meet.

So what might we do to show God’s love? I had to think long and hard about this question and I eventually came up with de-cluttering. Having already decided to pass on my collection of books, lovingly gathered over many years before God took over my life so much, to Chris Mellers, I decided that I had other treasured possessions I could part with that if sold, would help to spread the love of Jesus to others in need.

You might think that it would not be a sacrifice, but actually it would be because I have emotional attachment to many of the treasured possessions.

I’ll let you know in the next magazine whether I was able to carry the decision through.

One way you might recognise the time of Lent is by making time to come to the Bible Study on Thursday mornings. See the Diary of Events.

Love Life, Live Lent.

Every blessing,

Marion

Be Still and Know that I Am God

Be Still and know that I am God (Psalm 46 v 10)

Dear Friends,

be still and know that I am GodHaving spent much of the last six months using the Bumble Bee to teach the Ten Commandments to children in a way they understand, I was surprised and pleased to see a page in my ‘Grace’ magazine with the title ‘BEE NICE’.

A quote of Albert Einstein says “If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe then man would only have four years of life left.”

This was not another of those wild statements that the world would end on a certain day, but a request for us to play our part in turning round the decline of the honey bee and bumble bee. Perhaps there should be an eleventh commandment, “Bee nice to God’s Creation.”

I am very grateful for the Lord’s help in using the Bee to teach such things as thankfulness, truthfulness, faithfulness, calmness, and the latest subject, respect, so I felt that the children and I should see how we could repay the bumble and honey bee. With Roger’s help and expertise we will plant special flowers and shrubs as a Bumble Bee treat for next year.

Why did I begin with the verse from Psalm 46?

It might surprise you to know that eighteen lively children can “BEE STILL”! In our weekly prayer time they can and do, and yet so often we, the adults, find it hard to ‘be still’ and know that we are with God. Too often our anxieties or our busyness take away our peace and stillness as we pray.

Remember that Jesus said, “You ┬ámust become like little children”. Why? Because sometimes they can teach us to know Him better.

Love and peace to you all,

Marion

When the Day of Pentecost Came

“When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place…All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit.” Acts 2 verses 1 & 4

Dear Friends,

day of Pentecost cameEaster Day may be past so far as the celebrations of Jesus being alive are over and the Christian calendar has taken us on to the Sunday known as Low, but I hope and pray that we have not allowed the mundane things in our lives to take away the uplifting message of Easter. The period we are in, in May and June, includes the Ascension of Jesus to His rightful place with His Father in heaven followed by one of the most exciting days for Christians.

On Sunday June 12th, we celebrate the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit descended on the waiting disciples and filled them with such great power that they lost all their fear and were able to present boldly the Good News of Jesus to thousands of people who were then converted into being believers in the Risen Christ.

Every Christian has been given the same power to be bold in their faith. As I write this I have just read that the man who was threatened with the sack for having a palm cross on the dashboard of his car will no longer lose his job and the cross can stay where it can be seen. He stood his ground for Christ and Christians backed him up to the point where his employers felt bound to change their minds. The Christians of our country need to stand up and be counted in this way for we have been given the power of the Holy Spirit for such a purpose.

“Be Bold, for the Lord our God is with us!”

In the Lord’s love and service,

Marion

As the Waters Cover the Sea

As the waters cover the sea

Dear Friends,

as the waters cover the seaDuring Advent we sang the hymn which begins, “God is working His purpose out.” The last line of each verse of this hymn is “as the waters cover the sea.” This, someone commented to me many years ago, was a ridiculous statement because of course water covers the sea!

There are many things in the Bible which don’t immediately make sense and I suppose this is one of them.

During the Advent season we were thinking about the second coming when we read in Philippians 2 v 10-11 that, “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow in heaven and on earth and under the earth and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.” In the hymn we sing that the glory of God will be seen, but the actual words in the Bible are, “The earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.” This, then, is saying that the knowledge of God will one day flood the earth and everyone will know the truth about God.

As we move into the new year I wonder what our hopes are for 2011. We probably all have things we would like to do, i.e. have a nice holiday in the sun away from the coldness we’ve been experiencing recently, or a year of better health, or to be able to manage when the predicted austerity begins to bite, or something else.

You may know that Psalm 119 is extremely long. Verse 74 includes “I have put my hope in your word,” but it’s interesting to note that “word” is used over seventeen times in the Psalm. The writer says, “strengthen me with your word”, “I trust in your word, the word of truth”, “I obey your word, it is eternal”, “your word is a lamp to my feet.”

On Christmas Day we rejoice once again that the Word became flesh and Jesus Christ was born. He is our hope during 2011, He is our strength, our guide, our light. Whatever our own personal hopes are we must be sure that Jesus Christ is involved in them and when we struggle with disappointment let us turn once more to the written word and prayer. The Lord knows our needs even before we put them to Him in prayer.

A Happy and Blessed New Year everyone.

With love in Christ Jesus,

Marion

Christmas Blessings

Luke writes:

“Since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good to me to write an orderly account.” Luke 1 v3

Dear Friends,

Luke’s account of the birth and the actual arrival on Earth of God is the one of the four Gospels that I find most exciting. I have commented before that Advent is the “adventure” of Christ.

Most women awaiting the birth of their first child feel apprehensive, nervous and excited and the two pregnant women in Luke’s Gospel, Elizabeth, supposedly past child-bearing age, and Mary, a virgin, must have experienced all those emotions as the waiting time passed slowly and their time came. In each case the birth of those babies was a miracle brought about by the will of God. In each case the child was born for a special Godly reason. John was to be the forerunner and the baptizer of the Christ who was Himself, God on earth, the miracle maker, the teacher and preacher, the healer, the forgiver, the Saviour and the bringer of light into a dark world.

As I prepare this in the middle of October the shops have suddenly been transformed into Christmas grottos with tinsel, baubles, trees and cards, and I’m not ready!

I want to have the time of waiting…I’m not ready for the rush and bustle of Christmas time. I want to have a time of peacefulness and quietness, a time of meditation and sharing with others who feel the same so that I can enjoy once more the adventure of the birth of Jesus.

If you feel the same and would like to join me in the Chapel either on a Thursday morning or evening, you can find more details here.

May the Lord place His blessing on you and those you care about this Christmas time.

With love in Christ Jesus,

Marion