From Rev Jane Wild
The Methodist Church has appointed 2019 to 2020 the 'Year of Testimony'.
The suggestion is that we focus on recounting our experiences of discovering and encountering God. and that we remember to tell those stories.
We experience God in all sorts of ways and "If someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it. But do this in a gentle and respectful way" (1 Peter 3:15-16, NLT).
This needs some preparation. It asks that we think about how we first learnt about God and Jesus. Some of these question you may like to pray about are:
What our reactions were and how that changes over time?
How our lives are affected by knowing that we are loved by God and in what ways has this changed us?
What motivates us now and what challenges us as we live as the people of God?
Even though my life still isn’t perfect, how does knowing Christ help me deal with that fact?
All of these things are affected by our trust in the God of Grace who asks us to trust in the love that he offers and love others in response.
I pray that throughout this year we may practise and share our testimony to the work of God.
Two other things that will be happening in our Church life are a worship review and prayer prompts.
Over the next few months the Worship Preparation Group are going to be asking some questions about worship. Some of these will be about what enables you to worship and what hinders you. Some of the questions will be about more practical things: is it at the right time, place and style? We are trying to assess where the gaps are and what we need more of.
One suggestion from our young people, that we are going to explore, is a series of Café Church style services in the New Year. This will be a trial of three services over three months as the morning worship. There will be opportunities for more traditional worship on the same Sunday. If you would like to be involved in the planning of these services, please let me know.
Prayer promptsWatch the notices from September 1st for prompts to prayer and action. It will be a new section linked to the theme for each Sunday to help us act and reflect during the week.
May God bless you all as you love and serve.