Message from the MinisterMay 20, 2015
The May Hymn for the Month, “Focus my eyes on you O Lord” was written by Ian White, the Christian singer songwriter based in Perth. To focus on our Lord means turning our all towards Him, worshipping Him in spirit and truth. To turn towards Him is to turn away from all that is not of God, and as we turn towards Him we became changed, transformed in spirit and truth through God’s grace. This can only happen through the actions of Christ Jesus who lived on this earth, fully man and yet fully God, and who was crucified, died, buried and rose again. And even so, all that is not fully completed until He ascended to be with the Father as Priest, Prophet and King. Through these actions and in believing in Jesus, we can know forgiveness of sins, the gift of eternal life and receiving the Holy Spirit within us. As we realise what it is God has done for us our hearts fill with praise and joy for our God.
The Hymn for the Month gives us a chance to not only get to know new hymns or songs of praise but to go back over some favourites as well. Many of you have let me know your favourite hymns and I’m including them in the hymn choice week by week. It’s never too late to let me know your favourites if you haven’t already done that and many of you have told me that you have many choices and can’t always decide on favourites because you like so many different hymns: but that’s okay as I’m happy to get ‘extensive’ lists.
The Praise Group will introduce the next month’s Hymn for the Month at the monthly Family Service which I hope to have on the third Sunday of the month, although it will have to move to other Sundays some months due to various circumstances. I’m also delighted to take any suggestions for Hymns for the Month as well. You will be able to hear the Hymn for the Month on the Max West website where information regarding Family Services and meetings of the Praise group will be posted.
As we look out into the Parish, I’m working towards running “Messy Church” for families. It’s a different way of doing “church” and working with families as they explore Bible stories through craft, story and song, finishing with a meal together. More specific information will be coming out as we’ll need a team of volunteers to run the events. Messy Church has been used very successfully by many different congregations to connect with families in the Parish and to start to build relationships with these families. There’s a good Messy Church website if you want to learn more about it in the meantime (see below).
All this can only develop through working together and focusing on what God wants us to do as a congregation, as a group of Christ’s followers in this place and what God wants to do with each one of us. As we look to our future here, we should always be aware that our calling is not to conform to the patterns of this world but to be transformed by the renewing of our minds (Romans 12). We must continually focus on God the Father, reaching out to Him in prayer and seeing how the richness of 150 years of service in our building might assist us in going forward in this parish.
There is much to do but through prayer and worship we can and will know God’s will for us as He builds His Kingdom here.
With every blessing