For Prayer and Reflection…

Thanks to Dorothy, our President, for the prayer points below, to the people who have contributed various other parts to the page, and to the people at Sermon Central, who have made it possible to share with you some video messages of hope and encouragement in these unprecedented times.  Please feel free to pray on the points given, reflect on the thoughts shared, to watch the videos below, to read the suggested Scriptures, and to reflect on what a great and awesome God we serve.

Alan Harrison (Communications Officer)


Week Commencing 18th January 2021

Points for Prayer

“I am not writing you a new command but one we have had from the beginning.  I ask that we love one another.  And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands.  As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.’”

(2 John: 5b & 6, NIV Bible)

Theme for Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 18th – 24th January 2021 – Abiding in Christ.

Resources available from

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2021 – Abiding in Christ 

 

At the start of this week of Christian Unity, I was reminded of the disagreement held between John Wesley and George Whitefield.  They had many tough debates on their opposing theologies of freewill and predestination.  Yet they grew in love and learned to respect each other, whilst staying true to their own beliefs.  Wesley even preached at Whitefield’s funeral.

One mark of a true believer and follower of Christ is their love for other believers, especially when there may be disagreements in non-essential matters.

Let us pray for unity within the Christian faith, especially this week.

Dorothy Kendrick, Connexional President

Prayer

Renewed call to persevere in prayer across churches in the UK from the Baptist Union of Great Britain

We were very aware that all our Churches will have been praying for those who work in the NHS throughout this situation, and many have been providing resources for churches and individuals to do so.  We are also aware of various different calls to prayer and of days of prayer which are being organised by different groups.

However, there was a feeling that this is a key period in which we are being called to pray in a sustained way.  We are therefore commending to your attention the suggestion of the BUGB that we focus our prayer on five key areas:

  • Pray for all the NHS staff for their own safety, energy and peace in dealing with each and every patient
  • Pray for those in hospital leadership, for wisdom and for good decisions to give the best outcomes for patients
  • Pray for patients; for healing, for peace and ultimately to fight this disease and get home and pray for their relatives who feel helpless
  • Pray for the vaccine, that it will and is working against this latest strain of Covid-19
  • Pray for a reprieve and an end to Covid-19.

We very much feel that this is a call, not only to Baptists and to Baptist churches, but to the whole family of Christians in this country – and indeed, it is of relevance to those of other faiths.

The Baptist Union of Great Britain asks for your help in promoting this call to prayer, so please do feel free to circulate the text as widely as you can.  The prayer is available on the website front page.

News

 

Adult Baptism

Bethel, Newtown are rejoicing in having held an Adult Baptism Service for Emmy Knowles on 6th December 2020.

This baptism was an exciting and very special occasion for the church family and an enormous step for Emmy on her journey as she made a public profession of her faith.  May we encourage you to pray for Emmy in her walk with the Lord.

“Repent and be baptised, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of your sins.  And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”  (Acts 2:38)

(Thanks to from Pauline Smith for sharing this great news.)

 

ADVENTure in Cliviger

As mentioned in a previous sheet, on 30th November, one way that Cliviger chose to celebrate the love and hope they have in Jesus at Christmastime, was through lighting up their windows within the village.

Windows were decorated with coloured tissue and black paper silhouettes, to look like stained glass and numbered 1-24 so people could walk to find them all as a trail throughout the village.

Here is a photograph of the church window that was the last ‘window’ of their ADVENTure stained glass windows project which was very well received by many.

Many thanks to Rena Scholes for sending this update in.

Resources Available

CTBI Magazine – Available to download now!

The latest edition of the CTBI Magazine, Spring Edition, featuring Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI) and some member network news/ resources is available to download now.

This CTBI Magazine highlights the important work taking shape within Climate Sunday, Churches’ Refugee Network, racial justice, inter-religious issues as well as promoting resources available, like the Lent resource for this year ‘The Poet’s Gospel’, amongst other news and information available which may help to equip you, your church or organisation.

Due to the pandemic, this third edition of the CTBI Magazine is only available as a PDF to read and download online from their website.

 

 

Lent Devotional

Geoff Chapman, from our West Camel IM Church, has produced a booklet of 40 short daily reflections for Lent, based on John chapters 11 to 19, entitled ‘The Gathering Storm’.  Geoff has kindly made it available to all of the Connexion for people to use individually/in their churches.

If you would like a downloadable, PDF copy, please email either Geoff or Kathy at the Resource Centre and they would be happy to send you a copy.

Also, if you would like printed paper copies, these can be also arranged via Kathy for 60p each (plus P&P).


Week Commencing 11th January 2021

Points for Prayer


“Now this is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘Give careful thought to your ways.’”

(Haggai 1:5, NIV Bible)

England is being shaken.  Suddenly, it is no longer possible for us to do just what we want.  There will be consequences when we break the rules, and those consequences are immense.  People will die.

For a long time, it has been considered ok to bend the rules for our own benefit.  ‘It’s ok – it’s only…’  Except now, it is not ok.  Now, it is very important that we keep to the law for the good of others that they might live.  Our ways have consequences.

Some of our fellowships remain open for worship, some remain closed, some have opened and have closed again, some are live streaming, some are using Zoom.  All have given prayerful consideration before reaching their decision.  The law may change again, and we may all have to close for worship again soon – only the Lord knows.  However, as in the days of Haggai, our ways have consequences.

Let us continue to work together, to pray for one another, to encourage one another, to build one another up in the faith and to proclaim the Gospel of Christ whatever our situation.

This is God’s purpose for us. Let us fulfil our mission and give careful thought to God’s calling and our ways.

Dorothy Kendrick, Connexional President

Prayer

A New Year Blessing from “The Christian Gift Company”

May you know God’s closeness in the year ahead, may you hear His voice, see His face and witness His provision and protection.

May you be filled with his Spirit, experience His healing touch – be it physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually – and hold fast to the hope that you have in Him.

Whatever the year ahead holds, whatever trials and tribulations, whatever joys, answers to prayer and happinesses, may you know that He holds you in the palm of His hand, and that your name is written there also because you are precious to Him.

He can count the number of hairs on your head, and you are worth more to Him than sparrows and all created things.

May you seek after Him knowing that He is worth pursuing, may you know that He will help you and support you and never let you go.  May you know that you need never be afraid or fearful because He is with you at all times, to strengthen and enable you, and may you walk in the knowledge that He is more powerful than any weapon formed against you.

This year may you know the risen Lord and may His promises be fulfilled in your life, day by day.

Amen.

Many thanks to Georgina Smith at Hetton IM for sending her latest artwork through.

May these words from Psalm 27 encourage and strengthen you in the days ahead.

If you are on Facebook, Georgina has all her poems on there – Lamb Poetry