Holy Habits

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From the Manse....

I have hand sanitisers in hospitals to thank for the fact that I eventually broke my habit of biting my nails! The frequency of visits to a number of NHS buildings and the ubiquitous application of germ-killing gel and hand wash, resulted in an awful taste in my mouth if I dared to bite away at the end of my fingers.

We all have our habits from said biting of nails to spending too much time looking at mobile phones, via a whole host of others known to ourselves that we wish to break or give up.

A recent study in 2009 conducted by Phillippa Lally, a health psychology researcher at UCL, entitled 'How long does it take to form a habit', found that on average it takes 66 days for a habit to become ingrained.

In other words to change our behaviour we have to put in the effort in order to be successful.

As Methodists, we know something about habits, and the clue is in our name — Methodist. John and Charles Wesley and their Holy Club which met in Oxford, were so habitual about the way in which they studied the scriptures, prayed and reflected on their faith each day before going into the city to do good works, that they were given the insult of being Methodical — hence Methodism and Methodists.

As part of our 2020 celebrations at Wantage Methodist Church we are looking to launch 'Holy Habits' next year. Holy Habits is an adventure in Christian discipleship based upon Luke's picture of the early church in Acts 2:42-47. It explores and encourages the practice of ten disciplines, or holy habits: biblical teaching, fellowship, breaking bread, prayer, sharing resources, serving, eating together, gladness and generosity, worship and making more disciples.

As we begin to prepare for this exciting initiative for the whole church, we are delighted to say that Revd Andrew Roberts, himself a Methodist Minister who developed and produced Holy Habits is coming to spend a Saturday with us on 23rd November. This will start at 10:00am and end around 3:00pm. More information nearer the time, but please do put the date in your diaries. You won't want to miss it!

In the meantime, I continue to persevere at getting to the gym after Liz has left for work at 6:15am — another 52 times for it to be ingrained!

Love and God Bless

Keith

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