August 2019 greetings from Ros
As I write this I'm sitting in the Manse, admiring my new home and giving thanks for everyone who has played a part in getting it ready for me to move in. Some like Brian and Sue and Martin have invested many hours in getting the work done, Others have helped clear up and clean. Others have provided support, encouragement and prayers. Many have given money towards the Gift Day Appeal for the Chapel windows and Manse refurbishments. Thank you so much to you all. The Manse is looking good and slowly I'm unpacking boxes and making it more my home. The unpacking and garden are the two ongoing projects but they are a work in progress and will slowly be transformed.
As far as the Chapel windows are concerned, the transformation is amazing. I was so surprised when I first saw them with the matching pattern. On top of that the new pasterwork in the Schoolroom has made it look so much better. All of this work makes the building look more loved and cared for. It certainly brings a message to anyone coming in. It's things like this that people notice and impact how people view us. Now there's only the office to deal with (and the graveyard and the balcony and, and - ed) bu this is already on the horizon after many years of the rotten floor creating major problems.
The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart (1 Samuel 16:7)
God is in the transformation business too, but he is more interested in internal matters rather than external appearance. The Holy Spirit works on our hearts, character, attitudes and motives. His purpose is to encourage the fruit of the Spirit and in the process make us more like Jesus. August is often a quiet month that gives us an opportunity to recharge our batteries and workj out our walk with God. Our services are focussing on Celtic Christianity and its application in our lives today. We will be taking a feature of the Celtic church and a Celtic saint each week to see what we can discover for our present situation. As you know, this is something dear to my heart as I have spent many periods on study leave with my friend Jean learning more about Celtic Christianity and visiting sites associated with the Celtic saints. We have travelled to some amazing and surprising places and made some unexpected discoveries and connections. Our times away have been a mixture of pilgrimage, retreat and study and we have always returned tired but refreshed! So a time of busyness can be a time of refreshment as much as a time of quiet reflection. The important thing is the focus upon God and an openness to his Spirit's prompting.
I pray that this month will bring you refreshment and restoration.