Made in Love – Messy Church

It’s the start of a new school year and what better way to begin than at the beginning, looking at God’s awesome creation and remembering just how much He loves every part of it, including us!

We bid farewell to some dear friends who have been an integral part of the Messy Ministry here in Camden, and while it is always sad to say good bye, these amazing people will remain in our hearts as they continue their ministry elsewhere.

While we bid good bye to some we are so excited to welcome four new friends into the team. Our two new pastoral assistants, Yaroslav and Helena, and two new volunteers, Richard and Roli.

This year we have decided to expand Messy Church to a monthly affair (except for December and August), and will now run on the second Wednesday of each month. We hope that this will make it easier to remember when Messy Church is happening and grow our community of messers. To kick it all off we made this Messy Church a Messy Mass!

Our activities this month involved making a squishy ocean in a bag, the universe in a bottle (I’m still finding glitter everywhere three days later!), designing your own mini pizza face (I believe someone ate theirs for breakfast!), a scavenger hunt (so great to be able to still go out in the garden!) and a large sun collage made up of everyone’s uniquely decorated hands.

We followed this up with the worship, which centred on the awe and wonder of God’s infinite creation. I’ve included a copy of the video we used and the voice over below, Alan’s (one of our pastoral assistants) words really are quite beautiful. The worship ended with Holy Communion, the ultimate symbol of Christ’s love for us. When asked how the video had made them feel, one insightful messer said it made him feel sad, because we don’t always look after God’s creation as we should!

The whole event was topped off with a wonderful shared meal of chilli and rice, cooked by our talented chef, which was rapidly devoured by the masses.

Keep your eyes peeled for future events, our next Messy Church will take place on 14th October at St Paul’s Camden Square, but if you can’t wait that long or want to find out more we’ll be making an appearance at the Michaelmas Fayre at St Michael’s Church, Camden Road on 26th September.

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was empty and without form. Darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the Spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters.

It’s hard to imagine time before creation, when there was nothing, not even time. No mobile ‘phones, no buildings, no trees. Not even any sky. Nothing to stand on. Nothing to see. Nothing to see with. No people – no human thoughts or hopes or fears or joys. Only darkness, and the burning love of God.

The video is counting down to the beginning of our story; the greatest story and the beginning of all stories. Let us spend a few moments in quiet, trying to clear our minds. Let us try to imagine what nothingness might be like. Let us try to make space in our hearts for Creation, and for the God that created it: Our God, the God of Love.

God said ‘let there be light’, and there was light. He said ‘may there be sea and sky, wind and rain’, and it was done. He filled the seas with creatures as big as whales and as small as plankton, and the earth he made to burst with every imaginable plant and animal.

From time to time it’s good to take a step back and to remember what a beautiful world God created for us. The changing colours of the seasons, the wind on our faces, the rain that makes things grow. Elephants and mice, daisies and palm trees, birds, butterflies, rocks and sands and shadows and stars. Every movement comes from Him – the weather, the waves, our own walking and running. And every sound, from the singing of the birds to a baby’s laughter to the notes of a Mozart symphony, every one of them comes from God.

Looking at the moon and the millions of stars can make us feel quite small, but we’re promised that we’re part of all this. Each one of us. And not only that, but we’re a very special part. The Bible tells us that we’re all created in God’s image, and that God shines through each one of us. We can see him in the smiles of our friends and neighbours, in every human being. Psalm 139 reminds us that we’re all close to God, and he knows us better than our families and friends do, better even than we know ourselves.

O Lord, you have searched for me and known me.
You know when I sit down and when I get up;
    you can tell my thoughts from far away.
You search out my path and my lying down,
    and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before I’ve said a word,
    O Lord, you know it completely.
You surround me, behind and before,
    and lay your hand upon me.

The Book of Genesis is a bit like a hymn, or even like a love letter to God’s Creation. It is full of wonder and awe. It sings about all the best things in the world, the things that really matter. God’s Glory; our relationship with God and with each other; Truth; Beauty; Love.

Sometimes, people forget about God in their lives. Sometimes people mistreat the world God made for us. But God made it alright. He offered us all a way back. The same love God showed in the creation of this world we see before us, in all its colour and majesty and difference, he showed again when he sent one man, his son, Jesus. ‘For God so loved the world that he sent his only Son, that when people believe in him they shall have everlasting life’. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

So let us never forget what a wonderful world God created for us through Love. Let us never forget that wonder of is all around us, from Mount Everest to Camden Market, and in the faces of everyone we meet. And remember God’s promise to us in Jesus his Son, that in this enormous world in all of its dizzying wondrous beauty that we matter, because we were made and are loved by God.

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