St James' Church Update - June 2017
Do you remember Bishop Martyn's Lent School of Prayer at the Samworth Centre?
For some it was something of an eye opener to 'do' prayer without the usual Anglican liturgy, but with various props, such as a large cross, bread and wine, a series of pictures, a poem and a world map.
Drop a pebble in a pond and the ripples keep spreading out and that is what has happened for some people since that evening.
Did you buy one of the books the bishop recommended? Well Philip Yancey's 'Prayer: Does It Make Any Difference?' was one of them. For those who did, there has been greater revelation about preparing oneself for prayer.
If we were going to meet the Queen how would we prepare ourselves for that? I expect a bath and hair wash at the very least, it would be a
thorough clean up and we would be told how to talk to her, how to bow and curtsy! In fact we'd be told how to give the deference due to the
So what preparation do we need to meet the King of Kings? The suggestion is to get clean on the inside. There are a number of
examples in the Bible: Isaiah 6:5 "I am a man of unclean lips”.
Psalm 24:3/4 "Who may ascend the hill of the Lord, or who shall stand in His holy place? He that has clean hands and a pure heart."
Preparation is crucial. When preparing to build, we start by
looking at the foundations. Can I afford to pay for the materials? (This is still where we are at St James.) Are the drawings accurate? Are the footings deep enough? Are they on firm ground?
And so Philip Yancey calls us to prepare well for our time of prayer with God on which we will build our relationship with Him. To be still, to clear away the clutter that blocks us off from the Spirit of God, to put aside our self interest and concentrate on the presence of God
standing next to us. If you have ever listened to someone talking while being desperate to share your own story with them, you will know why we need put ourselves to one side because unless you do, you do not hear a word of what is being said to you. In order to converse with our Lord we have to put all our concentration on Him.
We are grateful to Bishop Martyn for dropping that first pebble into the pool and are excited by his invitation to a ‘Prayer and a Party’ at
Gaddesby Church on Monday, June 12th, which he will be hosting. And if you are eager for more – why not book in for the Bishop’s Summer School of Prayer at Launde Abbey in August? May the ripples keep growing!
Dates for Your Diary At St James’
2.30pm June 21st LINK - a talk by Mr Richard Adams followed by afternoon tea.
July 23rd 4pm - ‘Pimms and Praise.’ Patronal Celebration Service in Julia and Christopher Joseph's garden, Cross Lane, Burton Lazars.