Friday, 18 July 2008

Family ties

As I prepare to send out the final run order for Sunday I cannot help but be excited. What looks on paper, is a reflection of us as a family. We will have 9 children from Chernobyl with us on Sunday, part of the great work the Sue Butcher-Bigley is doing. We will be giving them bibles in Russian and generally making a bit of a fuss of them because we want to express our love for those who are in tough circumstances.

We will be baptising Steve and Jenny, each will give a short personal story and then we will baptise them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit as they make public that which has happened internally. At the same time we will bring Steve, Nitin and William into membership; they are declaring that they want to be loved in this local expression of church and are saying that they are totally on board with the vision of its leaders.

Our brother from Zimbabwe, Sibs Sabanda is then going to preach from the word of God. Last time he gave us a word which was at a mid week meeting, it was a prophetic word for us as a church and so I am in anticipation as to what God will do through him.

During the morning we will be focusing on Jesus; our Brother, our King our Saviour. We will worship him in song and in the giving of our money. The only reason that there is so much to get through on Sunday morning is because we are family. Not humanly but spiritually. I have a wonderful earthly family, but I also have a wonderful spiritual family that is not just confined to the borders of Reading. This time next year, Sean and family will be in Amsterdam; Dave and Hannah Henson are now back in St. Petersburg; Pervez is back home in Pakistan; Sibs is over here visiting his family from Zim and will be with us on Sunday morning; Pastor Paul continues to do great things in Kampala, Uganda.

The family I feel part of and that we should all feel part of, is the universal church of Jesus Christ, expressed through the local church we are a serving, giving, loving part of in the town in which we live.

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