Well what a joy it has been so far in Lent sharing with the 45+ people who have attended the Lent Groups across the two churches of Bilton Grange and Knaresborough URC. It has been fascinating listening to such a wide variety of views which have challenged my own thinking and enlightened my own understanding of scripture. I have found a real passion for God amongst us and a healthy questioning and discovering environment. I am in no doubt from this experience that when the people of God come together in this way, God is reflected in the fellowship that is being shared and we live out Jesus’ words “for where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them” [Matthew 18.20].
But as I reflect on those words of our Lord and Saviour I am asking myself and all of us, if in acknowledging Jesus is with us, whether we truly welcome him and furthermore if we are willing to journey with him into Easter and of course beyond. Using his words “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me”.
We see at Easter how Christ shared His passion for the world by accepting God’s purpose for Him to be crucified, to show us how much we are loved. It would do us well to recall again that as disciples of Christ today, that whilst we may fear sharing our faith with others, that Jesus was abandoned by His disciples and faced the cross alone. As the pain of each nail pierced His body and the agony of being lifted upright ran through each nerve, our Lord cried to God to forgive you and me. And on the third day Christ rose again! Surely a message we want people to know for their sake not ours.
So may the passion of the Easter story ignite in us a passion to share with the world our faith, our hope and the love of Jesus.
Happy Easter to you all.
Your friend and servant