Amma Sue - July/August 2014

posted 7 Sep 2014, 00:06 by Richard Jones   [ updated 7 Sep 2014, 00:06 ]

Dear Friends 

“Wanted, Christians, seven days a week and no holidays!” so declared a poster outside the church not far from where my parents live. I’m not sure whether it sounds like a great adventure or a hard slog! Something of both I’m tempted to say. But that’s what being a disciple of Christ is all about – being a Christian doesn’t stop at the church door on Sunday morning (or evening). Being a Christian is a life-long commitment; truly seven days a week and no holidays. 

I was once approached by someone in another parish (far away from our United Benefice) who complained about the fact that he was expected to pay for his parish magazine. “I belong to a lot of clubs and my membership fee covers the magazines there!” he almost snapped. It took me some time to explain that being a Christian wasn’t about being a member of a club and contributing to the work and mission of the Church wasn’t a membership fee! Baptism wasn’t something that you can pay your dues for – it’s a free gift of God, a sacrament, an outward visible sign of an inward spiritual grace, and that’s not something you can buy any more than you can buy love. Baptism and Confirmation that follows it are responses on our part to the wonderful offering of love that God holds out to us as we partake of the new life in Christ Jesus our Lord and Saviour.  And that is truly a life changing event that affects everything we are and everything we do. 

The eternal God incarnate in Jesus Christ humbled Godself and entered into time and space, into an actual physical place and an historical time and so shows us that nothing and nowhere is outside God’s loving concern. Being a disciple is a response to that amazing act of love and is itself an offering of love. Being a disciple of Christ can and will change our lives – all of our lives – for nothing is beyond God’s loving care and concern. So we can’t separate our faith lives from our family life, work life, political life, or social life; or even from our ‘consumer’ life. God the Holy Spirit cannot be confined to a once a week Sunday service; God the Holy Spirit breaks through our carefully constructed mental ‘boxes’ and insists of being part of all of our life not just the ‘holy’ bits! So try as we might we can’t be part-time Christians for to be a true disciple of Christ is indeed “seven days a week and no holidays!” 

With every blessing

Amma Sue.