Stepping up is a decision to leave the doldrums and to apply yourself spiritually to the year ahead. It is a decision to respond to God’s call and to be involved in God’s work. Many of you have been stepping up for years and making significant contributions through your time, finances, skills and wisdom, using them in the life of our church. We see the results of this when we look back at the highlights of 2018 and recall the good things that happened during the year.
Once we have decided to step up, then we need to lean in. Leaning in is putting our faith and trust in God. Leaning in is being aware that we cannot do this work in our own strength. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will direct your path.” (Proverbs 3:5–6)
Earlier this year Melanie and I went with family on a tree adventure. This involved putting on a safety harness and trusting it as we climbed among the trees and came down to earth on a zipline. The harness supported us, keeping us safe and secure. As we lean into God he supports us and gives us confidence as we take steps of faith.
As we lean in and trust God, he encourages us to reach out to others. God’s mission here involves connecting with people inside the church and reaching out to others in the community. Jesus had compassion for the crowds of people he saw and told his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” (Matthew 9:36–38).
We have many ways in which the people in our church can reach out. We can do it through play group, mainly music, holiday programmes, BBQ church … and more. These programmes make it easy for us to connect with other people by serving them, speaking with them and inviting them to take part in the life of the church. We express God’s love and can witness to our faith in him by our speech and actions.
As Greyfriars sets sail into 2019 I encourage you to become an active participant in one or more of our ministries as you step up, lean in and reach out in faith.
For personal reflection:
What skills, talents or gifts can I use to serve God in Greyfriars this year?
Rev John Malcolm