Jan– Feb 2013
Grace in all circumstances
We’re holding a time of prayer at 7am every Monday morning in the Prayer Room from now until Easter …..for the super spiritual? To twist God’s arm? To feel good about ourselves?
I hope the truth is none of the above! It’s simply this, as one Bishop said, ‘When you pray, things happen. And when you don’t, they don’t!’ And what does ‘things’ mean? While watching a short DVD on how the Holy God is as close to us as our breathing, someone at our new Parents Cell Group ‘Hopes & Dreams’ said, “That was the most worthwhile 10 minutes I’ve spent in a long time!” Perhaps you have experienced moments of God’s grace here at Ascension recently, or indeed anywhere else!
At one level, we simply want to pray over the various initiatives we are taking as a church at the moment, as described in other places in this Newsletter/on our web-site: the new Parents Cell group, a monthly Tea & Chat, a pre-marriage preparation course, a Deeper Discipleship course, new work among children, new directions in our youth work, a new Alpha Course, Doubters & Shouters…… (phew!). Plus of course some modernization work on our hall and the provision of a Coffee Station in church.
We have hopes for all these things. Nor are they just random things either. They have come out of 18 months of thought, prayer, listening to where people are at – ‘Vision Gathering’ as we’ve called it.
But at another level, we don’t know what to expect! Because it’s about people and their lives – your life! And some of the most, perhaps the most significant things happen at a deeper level than we fully understand.
As the DVD I mentioned spoke out, ‘God is spirit, and he wants to breathe life in all its fulness into us, which happens in our spirits as well as our minds and bodies’. So we want to pray that what really matters to people, the truly beautiful ‘things, will take place for many people under the hand of a loving, holy, truthful God. We don’t know what shape these beautiful and spiritual things will take for individuals – it’s likely to connect differently with each of us – but we certainly want to pray they will happen more and more, in, around, and through us!
Some of the circumstances that some of you face at the moment are really tough, and may get tougher! Others are just bored, or confused. Others are……well fill in the blank for yourself. But, as St Paul famously said, ‘Nothing in all of creation can separate us from the love of God’ – and he lists quite a lot of things that might! (read them in Romans 8.35-39).
So at a very basic level, we will be there on Monday mornings in February and March simply to pray that the Grace may come from God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, to as many people in as many circumstances as possible. May you discover His Grace in all your circumstances too!
Robert Pimm, Vicar