WMC: May 2017
That first Pentecost saw the outpouring of God's spirit upon the disciples.
In an instant they were changed people, no longer fearful, no longer timid, and no longer locked away behind closed doors. They were now bold and fearless — bearing witness and giving testimony to the great things that God had done. Peter stood up and addressed the crowds and about three thousand were added to their number that day.
Pentecost changed them as individuals.
The thing that always strikes me is how the spirit drove those disciples out into the world, out into the market places and streets, out to where the people were. Pentecost changed the world as well; it was not just for those disciples.
As once more we celebrate the great events of Pentecost, we too are reminded of how the spirit drives us out into the community. Yes of course the Spirit is with us in church, constantly shaping and moulding us into God's people, but He is also very active outside our four walls, continuing to change the world.
Part of our calling, part of our task, is to identify the workings of God's spirit in the world and to join in. There is much change in the air when it comes to being church.
Nationally and locally, these are exciting times to be part of the church community as God seeks to do new things with and through us in the power of His spirit. As a denomination and ecumenically, we will be very different in the years to come and that is all very positive — for the church must change, but that is only part of the story.
The other exciting dimension is out in the big wide world.
There are huge problems to be faced, as recent events have sadly reminded us, but also great opportunities to be grasped.
We are confronted by major issues and complex situations, but let us not despair, for we have good news for all and the power and presence of God's spirit. As we allow the spirit to change us within the church, let us also allow the spirit to send us out into the wider world.
For the sake of our communities and all people and in the power of the Spirit, may we bring love, light, healing, hope and peace to all.
With love and God bless,
popular recent storiesAlso in the news
Alison B, Liz U and I enjoyed walking with members of local Baptist and Mission Chapels from the Vale on a 5 1/2 mile walk round Ardington in September. The weather was glorious and we saw some lovely views, some wildlife (including a yellowhammer). The walk was in aid of Pilgrim Homes who run care homes, including our local care home Framland in Wantage. ...
Thank you all very much for church sitting on Saturday 8 Sept. Carolyn, Gordon, Alison and I all cycled around churches and the weather conditions were good. The church had 31 visitors, which is about the same as past years, although the day did seem very quiet and we didn't meet many others on the road. From experience we can tell you that it is a joy to arrive at churches which have...