Dear brothers and sisters,
‘Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I rejoice because of you …’ Romans 16:19
I’m not good at receiving or giving encouragement – it’s one of my many weaknesses. If someone comes to me at the door on Sunday and says ‘Well done, thank you, Eddie’ I instantly feel awkward, rub my hands, look down at my feet and change the subject. I’ve wondered if it’s because I can smell flattery a mile off, as the old saying goes ‘a complement is like perfume, sniff it but don’t swallow it!’ Of course, there is the danger of pride, yet we do need to learn to give and receive encouragement, graciously building one another up in the Lord. In Romans 16 Paul’s personal greetings demonstrate that he wanted the church to be quick to encourage, not quick to condemn, he wanted them to overflow with praise, instead of criticism, he wanted the church to honour one another above themselves. Sure he didn’t want a church full of flatterers and boasters but he did want a church where God’s grace was noticed and lifted up to the glory of God. How can we foster this kind of encouragement? Perhaps a good place to begin is in the way God delights in his work, he says about Jesus, ‘This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased’ Matthew 3:17. Since we are also God’s children, through adoption, he too delights in us because of the work of Christ … surely that’s a great motivation to give and receive encouragement to our brothers and sisters!
Morning Services at 9.15am in person; 11.15am both in person and livestreamed via St John’s YouTube channel.
Evening Service at 6pm in person; a recording will be available on our YouTube channel. This Sunday we begin an exciting new series entitled ‘ONE’ where we will be thinking about our unity from Ephesians 4:4-6.
Zoom refreshments at 10.30am
Youth for Christ one of our mission partners has a new prayer initiative beginning TOMORROW called Pray through May. If you would like to support this, please follow the link:
Please note Thursday 6th May the church will be closed all day as the building is being used as a polling station.
Book Club ‘Beyond Racial Gridlock’– Isaac Mugenyi will be sending details about the second part in due course and the chapter you need to read beforehand.
Grace and peace to you in the Lord Jesus, Eddie