Chapel Street Methodist Church

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Minister's Letter, 7 October

From the Revd Alastair Bolt

Dear Friends,

I do hope that you are continuing to come through this difficult period safely and in as good spirits as possible. It is encouraging that so many of you are getting into church buildings for worship, and that we are working creatively within the regulations. If the latter change, we shall change, but we will not give up. At the same time, online worship and fellowship groups have settled down as we have learned to work with the technology. The on- and off-line life of the church is truly complementary in the way that a personal visit or a prayer from far away have always complemented one another.

I am continuing to find that a touch of humour is always a help. The road-sign says: ‘30 mph, Covid regulations, people in the road’. I wonder at the lengths the authorities will go to make you slow down!

I was buying some new roof bars for my car this week, so that I can carry my Kayak. The catalogue from the roof bar makers said inspiringly

Bring your board   
    Bring your bike
        Bring your skis
            Bring your gear
                Bring your kids
                    Bring your love
                        Bring your passion
                            Bring your dreams
                                Bring your life

They have special roof bar attachments for carrying all kinds of kit, but after ‘bring your gear’, the list gets more challenging. I wouldn’t have wanted to carry my kids on roof bars, even when they were behaving impossibly badly inside the car. But if you were to carry your love, what would that look like? What is your passion that you would not want to leave behind? And what of your dreams that may affect your destination?

On arriving somewhere and having brought ‘your life’, what might that amount to? If you had it in the roof box and someone opened the lid, what would they find? Things you are happy with and proud of, things you are ashamed of or have forgotten. A person’s life is a thousand pieces, someone once wrote. As we get older we have more history to carry with us, the story of how we came to be who we are. At times we feel weighed down by our past, at other times it reassuringly draws us back into nostalgia for a land of lost content. Better still our history is a springboard for our tomorrows, full of lessons we have learned, good things to be built on. All of our lives are given to us by God, and every moment is valuable. He can heal past hurts, and lighten loads we carry unnecessarily. If we can recognize God’s hand in our past, even at times we have messed up, we can begin to trust Him for our futures. Jesus said, “I have come that you may have life, and life in all its fullness”. In Him, we can find our dreams, our passion and our love, a life worth travelling in. And you can bring your bike or your skis if you want to!

With best wishes to you all,

Alastair's signature

Published at 16:22 on 7 October 2020

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