January 2012

 

Dear friends

May I begin by wishing you and those you love much joy and peace in this New Year. There has been much to celebrate and rejoice in during the Christmas season. A big thank you to all who contributed in so many ways to the ministry of this church as together we declared the Good News of a Saviour’s birth. There were so many wonderful worship opportunities, so many guests, so many parents and children from the local schools. Thank you too to all those who gave up their Christmas Day to join the Churches Together team in providing a Christmas lunch to those on their own and those who participated in the Christmas lunch for the elderly last Thursday. 

The sacrificial contributions of so many people and in so many ways, demonstrates the glory of a church fully alive, reaching out in love and service. It also reflects the core values that are now so ingrained into our community life and which enable us with the power of the Holy Spirit to function effectively. 

1. All Involved

We value everyone finding their place in the life and ministry of Holy Trinity and serving as part of a team. By being involved and contributing we demonstrate that we belong and want to play our part in the purposes of God through the local church.

We reflect this commitment in 4 ways: 

Sunday worship (Commit to attend regularly)

Financial giving  (Commit to give regularly to the work and ministry of the church)

Cell group            (Commit to share in the life of a small group)

Serve                    (Commit to serve one Sunday a month on one of the church rotas)

Christianity is about being involved, working together to establish the Kingdom of God into our community. It is truly a joy to see almost everyone in our fellowship playing their part in serving at some level. 

2. Becoming Disciples

We are all of us ‘works in progress’. None of us has ‘made it’. We are all on a journey of working out what it means to follow Jesus in our lives day by day. As we take seriously the call and cost of discipleship so we find ourselves desiring to bring every area of our lives into line with his will for us. We do this best in relationship with one another in our small groups (which we call ‘cells’). It is here that we are encouraged to consider our attitudes, our use of money, our use of time and how we prioritise and bring it all under the banner of surrender to God’s sovereign will and purposes.

 

3. Creating community

As God knits us together in relationship with one another so we find the joy of belonging to a group of people who will always be there to provide encouragement and support and share with us through the ups and downs of life. This is what the church is: a community of people committed to living life God’s way and welcoming others to join us on our journey. Let us not neglect the arena of growing friendships, expanding the circle of our community and extending God’s grace and invitation to all. 

4. Doing evangelism

The most effective witness is that of our lives and what others see of Jesus in us. As the Holy Spirit works in us to make us more like Jesus so we will naturally overflow with His love to others. That means we need to be ready for those occasions when we are asked about our faith, so that we can give a good response that glorifies God and honours what he has done for us. 

5. Encountering God

Walking with the Lord means we need to set aside time everyday to talk to him, to listen to him and to read and meditate on scripture, so that we can encounter him not only in our worship on Sunday, but everyday whether at work or home or wherever we are: always desiring a closer walk with him. 

These are the ABCDE of the core values of our church that enable us to grow a healthy community that honours God and seeks to live out his purposes for us in the life he has given to us. 

At the beginning of this New Year may we reflect together on these values and resolve to journey ever more closely with the Lord and one another in the purposes to which he has called us. 

Week Of Prayer

As usual we will begin our year with a week of seeking the Lord in prayer. There will be three slots during the day in which we will gather in the church foyer.

                                               9.00 – 9.30am, 12.00- 12.30pm, 7.00 – 7.45pm 

 For those for whom this will be difficult please do take the prayer diary with you to work or school and set aside time (during your lunch break for example) and join with us in praying through the focus for each day. The possibilities of what God will do are without limit when we take time to seek him together. Please decide today to make this a priority for this next week.

                                Every blessing in Christ,      Stephen