Ros's message for May 2019
This month we are in that period of expectation and waiting for what follows the resurrection joy of Easter Sunday. These are words we usually associate with Advent and the time of looking forward to the birth of Jesus rather than this time following his resurrection. But they are equally applicable as it was a time of God doing something new and unexpected.
We have spent 40 days of Lent looking towards the cross and exploring what the death and resurrection of Jesus means to us now in our lives. Now we enter that period in which Jesus made a number of resurrection appearances, not just to the 11 disciples but even morre of his wider group of followers. It was a time of confustion and excitement.
The disciples never really had a chance to feel comfortable and settled. Life was in transition. Jesus was still with them in a familiar way but not for much longer. At the end of the month we will be remembering his Ascension. We will be joining with the other village churches in 'Thy Kingdom Come' - 10 days of prayer activity.
This post resurrection time is often referred to as a time of new beginnings. In creation we find evidence of this, with the trees bursting into life with new leaves and blossom. Everywhere we look we can see the beauty of creation. There are lambs in the fields, bluebells in the woods, and the sun has been shining... even the dandelions look pretty in yellow!
It is also a time of new beginnings for us; well especially for me. At some point I will finally be moving into the Manse. What an epic time of waiting and expectation that's been for all of us! Now the waiting is almost over and the discomfort and and uncertainty will be over or will take a new form. A big 'thank you' goes to all of you who have played a part in transforming the house - those who cleaned and cleared, those who painted and repaired, those who ripped out and re-assembled, and anyone else who played a part in the work in the Manse and garden. It's been exciting seeing the transformation. I can't wait to see my furniture in there when it finally comes out of storage. I've been trying to remember what went into storage, but that was over a year ago. I'm sure I will be in for some surprises.
The last few weeks I've been thinking about what's happened in that year and a bit. I've been particularly aware of the difference in my health, thanks to my operation. I was really struggling when I packed up my things for storage which makes my membry of what went into the boxes very hazy. Now my energy is renewed and my breathing much improved, which makes me excited about the future we face.
And it isn't just me. As a churche we are being transformed. New signs of growth are beginning to emerge. We've had new people join us. We've been challenged by God. What the future holds we don't know, but we can be sure God hasn't finished with us yet. Jeremiah 29:11 reminds us:
'For I know the plans I have for you', declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future'
This is a time of new beginnings for us. Let's rise up and meet the challenge.