Messy Church – 14th June!

Messy Church is nearly upon us! This month we are looking at ‘The Friend of little children’ from the Jesus Story Book Bible. This story brings together passages from the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke:

 “Then little children were being brought to him in order that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples spoke sternly to those who brought them; but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.” And he laid his hands on them and went on his way.” Matthew 19:13-15

So often I hear people complain about other people in church, not just children, some are too noisy, some are too quiet, they never seem to volunteer to do anything, and others are too precious about their roles to share the load. I’ve also heard many people say they do not feel they live up to the people around them, they see themselves as a failure, or not good enough. It’s a feeling I’ve experienced myself more than once. It leaves us feeling alone, isolated, like we don’t belong in this community. If we could just be better, cleverer, better looking, better at multi-tasking, more confident, less exhausted then everything would be better, we would fit in, we’d be accepted.

In our story this month, the disciples are trying to figure out who is the best friend of Jesus, if only they were the smartest, nicest funniest, Jesus would like them the best. But those things don’t matter to Jesus, God the creator has made each of us unique, precious. He doesn’t want us to be like the people around us, he wants us to be us. Being in community with one another is not about us matching up to the person next to us, but rather bringing our own gifts, vulnerabilities and sparkle into the community, making it colourful, fruitful and inviting. God’s love for us does not need to be earned, it is there, waiting for us to acknowledge it. His love for us is unconditional, it cannot be earned, he does not love one more than another, he loves us just as we are…

Just as I am, without one plea,
but that thy blood was shed for me,
and that thou bidd’st me come to thee,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, and waiting not
to rid my soul of one dark blot,
to thee, whose blood can cleanse each spot,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, though tossed about
with many a conflict, many a doubt,
fightings and fears within, without,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, thou wilt receive,
wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
because thy promise I believe,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcFp0-4RZzc

We are all God’s adopted children, we are all called to him, and nothing can stop him opening his arms to us and welcoming us! Jesus says we need to be like the little children, trusting, loving, non-judgement, confident in who we are and not in what we think others think we should be.

 

Lord God,

Today when we feel as though we are failures,

Or at our wits end,

Or like we don’t quite match up to those around us,

Remind us that you have made us perfectly for your purpose in us.

Guide us, give us wisdom, peace of mind,

and willingness to know your love for ourselves and each other.

Help us to build a community that reflects every colour of your creation,

A creation where each of us shines as beacon of your love.

Bless those who do not know your love,

Give us opportunities to witness and witness to your love.

We ask this in your name,

Amen

 

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