As I write, we’re completing our series Six More Lies of Satan (and why we still believe them). It’s been a hard series to preach (even the bulletin cover is pretty hard to look at), but many of you have said that something about it resonated with you. That’s probably because, as Paul says in 1st Corinthians 10:13, “no temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man”. Satan lies to us all, and, ironically, one of his biggest lies is that somehow we are unique in being tempted, condemned, and mislead.
The good news is that we can bring these lies out into the light and talk honestly about how we’ve fallen for some of them, because “we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.” (Hebrews 4:15) Though he felt the temptation, he never fell for the lies, and so, no matter where we are, to us He offers grace.
We’ve also recently completed our New Members Class and on June 26th–New Member Sunday–there will be the chance to baptize and welcome several new members. Even if you have been here a long time, if you would like to take the opportunity to make a new start, or even just to share news of something God has been doing in your life, please just let one of the staff team or vestry know. And if you happened to miss some of the classes, don’t worry, we’ll be running them again in the Fall.
After Pentecost, we’ll begin our summer season with a church picnic on June 12th, and on that day, we’ll also begin our Summer series Restored: The Healings of Jesus. After all these lies and spiritual battles, I hope it will be refreshing simply to hear that in every circumstance Jesus is a healer, and that his ability to restore us from any situation on this earth, merely points to an even greater restoration yet to come.
A Summer series like this is especially great if you are traveling—each sermon stands alone, so you can listen to them in any order you like. But, if you are traveling, why not download the app and keep up-to-date via the broadcast and podcast—if you happen to be watching from somewhere exotic, I’d love to see a photograph. So far, we’ve had images from Iraq, Hawaii, and Butler (the big three!).
When I get back from my own travels, my picnic table will be outside my house as usual. That’s an indication that the fridge is well-stocked with plenty of over-priced fizzy water, and that you have an invitation to come and have a drink if you are diving past. I love you, I love it here, and I hope you have a wonderful summer.
Love in Christ,