A week after re-affirming their baptisms in the sea at Hunstanton on a brisk, but sunny winter’s morning, Immy and Adam share their stories about how they came to faith in Jesus Christ. From very different beginnings and on very different journeys, they openly talk about their joys and sorrows, their blessings and struggles, as they try to walk each day with God.
I wonder if you have ever been subject to a case of mistaken identity?
To my amusement I read the other day about a group of priests who went into a pub in Cardiff to celebrate the ordination of one of their number. Thinking they were a stag party in fancy dress and anxious to avoid any trouble, the pub manager initially threw them out. The priests managed to convince the manager that they really were priests and an embarrassed publican offered them a free round of drinks by way of an apology.
When Mark Fuller wrote in last month’s Gazette that he was leaving Yaxley, several people mistakenly assumed it was me who was going. If that was a cause of celebration I’m sorry to disappoint you – I’m still here! I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Mark publicly for the huge contribution which he made to life here – both in the church and the community. We wish Mark, Becci, Josie and Ethan well in their new home and ministry in Portishead.
It seems to me that many of us think our identity is linked to what we do, what we have, what school we attend, etc. However, I believe that’s a real case of mistaken identity. Back in Genesis, the Bible tells us that we are made in the image of God. Early in his Gospel, drawing on the language of Genesis, John tells us that everyone who believes in Jesus is given power to become a child of God. That for me is our true identity – children of God who are invited to live in his everlasting Kingdom.
If you’d like to explore more about your true identity as a child of God please feel free to join us at any of our services – see our events calendar for more details, or get in touch to find out more.
With my continuing prayers,
Read this article in the Yaxley Gazette.
I wonder if you’ve got a favourite story?
Perhaps a story you remember being read to you as a child? Perhaps a story that brings to mind memories of a particular time in your life? Stories are powerful. They can make us smile and they can make us cry. They can put a swing in our step or leave us poignantly reflecting. They can even change the way we think about our lives or about other people. Stories don’t always provide us with answers, but the images, the thoughts and the feelings they evoke can shape how we understand the world.
There is an old saying I like that ‘God created humans because God loves stories’. I wonder if you have ever thought of your life as part of a story? Despite common misconceptions, the Bible is not primarily a book of rules nor is it simply a book of factual information. Rather, it is the story of God’s interaction with people throughout history. Stretching deep into the past and looking longingly to the future, it tells a narrative of a God intimately involved in human life with all its joys and struggles, its messiness and its hopes. A story that far from leaving us passive observers actually calls us to participate in the story it continues to tell.
In April, we are starting a new group at St. Peter’s called Encounter which will provide a space to explore our own lives alongside the Christian narrative; to see our stories in the light of God’s story. You do not have to be a Christian, attend a church or even have read the Bible to come along and it is ideally suited for those who want to think more about life, faith and spirituality in an informal environment. It is a place where all stories are valuable, all questions are valid and there will be absolutely no jargon.
Join us at Encounter
Beginning on Friday 15 April, Encounter will meet on alternate Friday mornings at St. Peter’s. Tea, coffee and pastries will be served from 9.15am. A short, thought-provoking DVD will be shown at 10.00am followed by time to ponder, discuss and reflect. There is no charge and a crèche will be provided if you wish to attend with young children.
Read this article in the Yaxley Gazette.