Weekly Update – 1st March

Lent, a time of reflection and prayer, to draw closer to God.

In addition to giving something up (this year it’s bread), writing down one thing I’m grateful for, and going for a quick walk before work every morning, I’m also following the Church of England’s Lent series ‘Watch & Pray’ (I can listen to it whilst I walk!). Is anyone else reading it? It is very good.

After I’ve listened to the daily reflection, I have enough time left in my walk for my own thoughts and prayer, and I’ve found that my thoughts turn to St Nics.

The first few days were about waiting and darkness. They reminded me of our time of discernment, how we needed to spend time ‘tarrying’ and not be afraid of the darkness, but to remember that we need the darkness to grow and find our way (the reflections spoke of growing cress, I’ll take that, it’s better than being likened to mushrooms!)

The first week was titled Unity, the reflections of the week spoke of coming together, the oneness of God and the sharing of one bread; but it also made mention of those things that divide us and encouraged us to pray for deeper unity. St Nics has shown unity in abundance; the coming together as we reflected on the What3Words exercise and what that may mean to us going forward is just one example. I feel very privileged to be part of a Hub and wider church family that is pulling together, that doesn’t necessarily always agree on the little things, but respects the individual and their thoughts and can put differences to one side and unite for God.

And this week, Movement. It’s been a year now since we’ve been in interregnum (I know – where did that year go?). It’s been busy, (so much for Church Wardens only needing to light candles and count – the role was seriously misrepresented!), and it’s been a journey. It is only when you stop and look back that you can see how far you’ve come. With the love and support shown by the St Nics family, I think I’ve ‘moved’ or ‘grown’ in the past year, as a person and in my faith; I see growth in my fellow Hubbers, and I can see change in the church.

Can you see it? I wonder if that’s because I’m so involved?

I spent a good many years on the very outskirts of St Nics; my children came to holiday clubs; we attended Parade Services as part of the Uniformed groups; even after I started attending church regularly, I held back. I was so worried that I’d be coming to church under false pretences, not for God, but to belong to a committee.

Oh, what a fool.

The bible tells us all about our gifts, or talents, received from God, and how we should use them to serve him and others. I’m not really sure what my talent is, but I know that I’m a ‘doer’. If there’s a stack of washing up to do, I can do that; tables to move; an event to organise; a noticeboard to change; candles to light and things to count – I can do those (I can’t bake!).

Being involved, fully, with St Nics has changed my life. It has put God forefront and centre in everything I do, I’m not sure that would have happened without me ‘succumbing’ to the urge to join a committee. (apologies, I appear to have gone off on a tangent and shared far more than I thought I was going to).

What I wanted to say was, to fully appreciate the movement and growth that St Nics is experiencing, and to draw closer to God, don’t be like I was, don’t hold back. Use your talent for God’s service. St Nics needs you and all you have to offer. Would you like to read? Can you mow the grass? Would you like to help Fiona? Can you play an instrument? Can you join the coffee rota? And there’s always cake!

The ways to help are limitless. Please, just reach out and offer, the rewards are plentiful.

Next week’s reflections come under the heading Spirit, I’m looking forward to seeing where they take me…..

God of our ancestors, you have moved in generations past, and continue to move us in the present into your glorious future. Give us faith to trust you in the uncertainties of life.