A new month, a new season.. the same God
It’s hard to believe that I’m already sat here at my desk writing the Vicar’s letter for September.This year, again, seems to be flying by! I hope you managed to enjoy some time of rest and relaxation during the summer and perhaps had the opportunity to spend some quality time with family and friends. We as a family had a great holiday together and, of course, had a very precious time with our church family and mission partners in Sri Lanka.
Sometimes getting back to work after a good break can be difficult. This year will no doubt be even more tricky for us as a family, as we embrace life afresh, with our eldest daughter Ellie leaving for university in Edinburgh.
As we begin to think about the new term and the next ‘academic’ year that lies ahead, I’m excited as we continue to move forward with our plans for the redevelopment of St Matt’s. September should see the first initial phase completed, which includes the restoration of the room above the Office wing, including the re-instatement of the original spiral staircase and the opening up of a large window into the worship sanctuary. This new space will be great for PCC meetings, youth and prayer gatherings, and offers us a new rentable room with unique access from the back wing of the church.
In September we also start a series on prayer using the Lord’s prayer as our teaching model. The truth is that everyone prays at some point – but not many find it easy. We all need a little help. The brilliant Pete Greig has been, inspiring, teaching and writing on prayer for nearly 2 decades and has written a really helpful book called ‘How to Pray,’ a Simple Guide for Normal People.
In his words: “Every pilgrim gets a stone in their shoe eventually. You wake up one morning thinking, ‘Is this really all there is to knowing the Creator of 100 billion galaxies?’ You read the book of Acts and ask, ‘Why isn’t it like that anymore?’ Your world falls apart and you desperately need a miracle. You stare up at the stars and feel things bigger than religious language. You say to yourself, ‘If this thing is true, there’s got to be more power, more mystery, more actual personal experience.’ And so, finally, you turn to God, half wondering whether you’re any more than half-serious and say, ‘Lord, teach me to pray.’ And He replies, ‘I thought you’d never ask!”
We are all on a journey to encounter more and understand God better. May this new season help us all to deepen our walk with the Lord, to learn to pray more effectively and better hear his voice of strength, love and calm in these often uncertain days.
Love and prayers, Tim, Sarah, Ellie, Sam and Jo x