Central Methodist Church Hope & Fellowship Magazine.
“A great many people are trying to make peace, but that has already been done. God has not left it for us to do; all we have to do – is to enter into it,” Dwight L Moody.
Wow what a week it has been, I have felt lost this last couple of weeks as I never seem to know if I’m doing the right thing or just following the crowd. Helen's reflection below really knocked me for 6 as it made perfect sense to how I have felt. I don’t have to be perfect or do things right first time it’s okay to do my best and I will gradually find my way. It also helped me to reflect as lately I have stood out as I haven’t followed the crowd at work. I don’t know if I’m saying or doing the right thing or if they are, but it’s fair to say I’m definitely the lost sheep at the moment. I’ve been reassured by the promise that God will always lead me back onto the correct path and won’t let me stray too far away. I’m blessed to know Jesus as my Lord and Saviour and it saddens me that in this lonely and dark time others don’t, be a friend, be a light and spread Gods compassion to all we meet, after all its what Jesus would do.
God bless you all
Dear Lord, it's time to just come into your presence, quietly.
You are a God who cares, who knows everything, who sees everything, who loves.
You see the woman working hard to keep the home clean and nourished. You see her putting family first and herself last. You care when she is not treated right. Give her strength. Give her good health. Give her joy.
Let her be still... and know...
You see the man working hard. You see the man frustrated. You see the man helpless without a job. You see his heart and the pain of not being able to provide and protect his own. You care. You will provide. You will strengthen him. You will empower him.
Let him be still and know...
You see the healthcare fraternity in all its glory. You see their sacrifice. You see their commitment. You see their heart of service. You care when they are stretched. You see their tears. You feel their fears. Give them strength. Give them courage. Give them everything they need... don't hold back. Help them in all their busy work to,
Be still and know...
You see the children. You love them. You want the best for them. Help them see your heart of love. Help them look for the rainbows. Help them to see the best in themselves and in the world. Help them to,
Be still and know...
You see a hurting world. You see their anxiety of uncertainty. You see their grief of losing a loved one. You see our elders wanting to give us hope. You see the leadership struggling to balance decisions. You see the experts take on the virus and all the challenges it presents. You see the cascade of chaos. You see clenched fists of frustration. You see open palms of resignation. You see anger driven bruises both outside and inside. You see. You care. You love. Help us to know this. Help us to see you. Help us to feel your presence. Help us to know that we will prevail. Help us to look for the hidden happiness in every situation. Help us to pass on the joy. To renew. To rebuild. To trust. Help us to…
Be still and know you are God.
Dr. Priya John (nee Macaden)
A Reflection from Helen Frate
The last few weekends I’ve been getting up early (leaving Tony in bed) to sit in the conservatory with a cup of coffee.
Around 8ish the house a few streets away sends up his pigeons for their morning fly.
I watch them flying in formation (apart from one who always seems to be going in the opposite direction for the first 5 minutes then finally seems to get the hang of things and joins in.)
I find this wonderfully calming and it makes me thinks about the story of Noah …….
The ironic thing about this is I am terrified of pigeons and will cross the road to avoid them normally.
“What a friend we have in Jesus
All our sins and griefs to bear
And what a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer
Oh, what peace we often forfeit
Oh, what needless pain we bear
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer
Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged
Take it to the Lord in prayer
Can we find a friend so faithful
who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness
take it to the Lord in prayer
A Poem from Judy that she wrote in June 1994
God’s peace can be found
In many different things
In the knowledge that He loves us
And the assurance, that that brings
It’s the knowing that He delights in us
When our love for Him we show
It’s knowing that He removes our fears
As our faith begins to grow
God’s peace is a very special thing
Yet, it’s freely available to all
Who give their lives to our Lord
When they hear His gentle call
Your life may not be trouble free
It may be difficult, that is true
So, share everything with our Lord
He will always help you through
Seek His face and you will find
God’s peace in all that you do
Pray God’s peace into your life
It’s the best thing you will ever do
Nathan’s Personal Encounter with Jesus who is risen
I am writing this in response to your Superintendent Minister who asked me whether I could write briefly about my personal encounter with the Risen Lord.
Looking back, I can see now that growing up rid me of Jesus ‘the person’ and instead brought in Jesus ‘the presence’. Let me explain what I’m saying – to me, Jesus is analogous to the Force from Star Wars – a shapeless, formless entity that guides me in life and helps me make important decisions, be that consciously or unconsciously. I have always felt Jesus there, regardless of the situation, even though I’m guilty of forgetting him until I’m really desperate.
My education also formed my perspective of Jesus – weirdly enough, science and logic helped me define my faith and why I believe in God. In the face of all the arguments for the existence God being strongly criticised (and rightly so, they’re pretty bad) by modern day philosophers, I realised that the crux of faith is in the name. Belief in God and Jesus doesn’t make logical sense because it can’t – even if scientific measurements cannot prove empirically that God exists, it doesn’t and shouldn’t matter. Having faith in Jesus is to know that he transcends things we can completely make sense of.
I guess this is comforting in a way, because it reminds me that we can’t make sense of where Jesus takes us, we just have to go with it. As for others, there have been times in my life when things haven’t worked out to plan, or I’ve been thrust into an unfamiliar and daunting situation. In retrospect, and it sounds cheesy to say it, it was God pushing me to better things.
I’m not going to lie, I do have doubts – when I read the news, which in classic news fashion is typically depressing, it makes me wonder why God lets terrible things happen. I don’t buy the argument that God tests people by causing horrible things to occur either. This is one aspect of faith I struggle with, but it’s one I hope I can figure out one day.
I wish and pray that you all may continue to encounter the Risen Christ in your daily life. Have a meaningful Happy Easter.
God bless us all.
An Old Italians Tomato Garden
An old Italian lived alone in New Jersey. He wanted to plant his annual tomato garden, but it was very difficult work, as the ground was hard. His only son, Vincent, who used to help him, was in prison. The old man wrote a letter to his son and described his predicament.
Dear Vincent, I am feeling pretty sad because it looks like I won’t be able to plant my tomato garden this year. I’m just getting too old to be digging up a garden plot. I know if you were here my troubles would be over. I know you would be happy to dig the plot for me, like in the old days.
A few days later he received a letter from his son.
Don’t dig up that garden. That’s where the bodies are buried.
At 4 a.m. the next morning, FBI agents and local police arrived and dug up the entire area without finding any bodies. They apologized to the old man and left.
That same day the old man received another letter from his son.
Go ahead and plant the tomatoes now. That’s the best I could do under the circumstances.
One of the greatest gifts that God has given us is our ability to adapt. During this time of “isolation” we as Christians have had no choice but to change the way we worship, pray together share fellowship and spread the Kingdom of God. Having our Church buildings taken away has been a real ordeal but also a real opportunity! How many church meetings have we sat in where a speaker would say we need to take our church outside to the people who don’t know it? Over the past weeks of lock down across the world we have seen the Church presence grow through the internet via websites, twitter pages and Facebook groups. I can’t imagine how many Church services can now be seen online but I do imagine the number is far greater than it was 3 months ago. God’s word is reaching out to the world, truly a church without walls and a tomato patch freshly dug ready to bear fruit.
Throughout the Bible and other historical references people in isolation and/or prison have risen up to the challenge. Here’s a challenge for us all to look in our Bibles or if you have Internet access. Go and Google.
Joseph and his coat of many colours
My dear friends,
By God’s grace another week has gone and we shall continue to live in the weeks to come; God has been faithful and His compassion's have not failed us and therefore our hope is that this continues in the days to come.
Well done, keep praying, keep reading the Bible, keep counting God’s blessing, keep encouraging one another, and never stop trusting the Lord.
I am grateful to Jesus for His prayers for us and words of encouragement, He whispers to each of us, telling us that we are still together bound by His divine love and shall be filled with His loving and caring presence wherever we are today.
Be assured of my prayers.
Rev Dr Joseph Suray
We will continue to produce these newsletters in the hope that it unites us in fellowship and prayer. As a team we would love input from all who read this, and feel free to pass it on or let us know of people who would like it and we will gladly facilitate that.
If anyone would like to submit anything to the next newsletters, please email us –
Adamldhadley@gmail.com or Tony.firstname.lastname@example.org