The season of Lent is a time during which we are invited to reflect on our lives. It is a time of "giving up" in order to create the space in our lives for the renewing purposes of God. It's a time of repentance; of turning around.
The problem is as I write this letter sIx months into my time here in Frodsham, I want to celebrate! We have much to thank God and each other for in our fellowship at Frodsham Methodist Church. Through the enthusiasm and hard work of our members we have a wide programme of opportunities for fellowship and worship. We have six different forms of Sunday worship! Through these different forms of worship we celebrate that God meets us where we are. We see this in Jesus' own ministry. Philippians 2 celebrates with wonder that in Jesus, God has eschewed the throne of heaven to come alongside of us. Jesus ventures out to the workplace in order to call his disciples to him. He meets us where we are. However, the call to discipleship does not allow us to remain there. The turning point in Mark's account of the Gospel is the conversation at Caesarea Philippi when Jesus asks those who have journeyed with him: "Who do you say I am?" (Mark 8:27).
From that point onwards, Jesus calls his disciples to take up the cross and follow him.
That's the challenge of this Lenten season. God has met us in our needs, in our preference for a particular style of worship, but now he asks us if it has made a difference. He has taken upon himself our form and image. Are we willing to be re-formed in his? Are we now willing to follow him on the road that he leads even if that road is contrary to our own preferences?
Are we willing to take up the cross in our lives and the life of our fellowship?
Some of us reading this magazine will not need reminding that we are called to carry a cross. For some of us it is daily, lived reality. As we follow Jesus, so we are able to know his presence alongside us.
The Good News of this season is that strangely, unexpectedly, wondrously, this road, this suffering, this ending - is actually the way to new life.
Grace and peace.
Blog posts written by the Minister and Members of Frodsham Methodist Church.