Esther brought us the word on 2 July. She started by asking Roy if he would get her and anyone else who needed one a cup of water. Roy happily obliged and brought her the water that she asked for. Esther then asked the congregation to read the promises set out in Psalm 89:1-4.
In proclaiming his faithfulness forever, David’s descendants are promised that one of them will always be king. Further on in Psalm 89:14-18 we see his kingdom is founded on righteousness and justice, and love/mercy and faithfulness/truth shown in everything we do.
Dishonest action can never come from God. We need to acclaim God’s promises to us. Acclaim means praise enthusiastically and publicly.
Esther shared that she is glad that we are a church that praises enthusiastically. Walking in the light of God’s compassion and truth should be the norm. Sadly it is not at the moment.
Matthew 9:9-13 and 12:1:7 we get a very clear idea of Jesus’ view of what He sees as right and just. Jesus takes a different stand and shows clearly that people’s needs are more important than artificial rules. Matthew 10: 40-42 shows we will be welcome and rewarded when we welcome a good man or woman.
Esther shared that the purpose of a temple is to bring people to God. How we can we be the people to offer the cup of cold water if we don’t welcome and encourage people. In our life we will come across two types of people, those already walking in faith who will need our encouragement and those who haven’t heard His word at all.
David and Esther met at Roker Park whilst helping with a Billy Graham evangelist event. The events themselves are great but it is the importance of the individual relationships
Life would have been very different for Esther if she hadn’t had Marjorie Wheatley’s encouragement and if David hadn’t had Jean Waller’s encouragement. Without it they would not have met at all.
Esther shared some of the Pilgrim’s podcast by Pete Greig. It is amazing that separated by hundreds of years Billy Graham and St Aidan had the same idea, convert Northumberland. Aidan walked the walk and Billy Graham talked the talk. St Aidan gave space and time to the Lord and to his people.
Pete Greig shared how Jesus took his time, He only had 3 years yet He still found time to go fishing and partying with his friends.
God walks slowly because He is love. Stop and smell the roses as the saying goes. Pete Greig shares how back in the Middle Ages, when pilgrims were asked where they were going they would say “A la Sainte Terre” or to the Holy Land…. this became over time the phrase Saunters. We need to also be saunterers, to not be in a rush. This is what led our church to encourage people to gather at the Well on Wednesdays.
Having time to gather and to sit and share stories, play games, and to share food. Waiting to see what happens leads to amazing things, like the two mums who call in looking for somewhere to feed and nurse their babies. They met with Chris who was able to call on her many years experience as a midwife to help and reassure them. It’s clear we need to be open through the week, making space for people to talk and share. The cup of cold water that we started with was an illustration of God filling up that cup with his love.
Esther shared a bit of a recent article that she had seen about Adjoa Andoh, the actress who plays Lady Danbury in Bridgerton. Adjoa shared that she is a Christian and was recently quoted as saying “Our job is to make space for God to do God’s work”. No one soul is any different or more important than another. Jesus confirmed that we all deserve mercy.
We don’t have to be fine, it is ok to be a mess. Whatever is going on can just be between you and God. But it’s important that we think about the person walking through the doors of our church for the first time. Allow people to encounter God in our churches.