A summer reminder ….
A summer reminder – the second book in the Bible is Exodus and one message shouts loud and clear from the pages: the importance of taking a Sabbath.
From the moment God provided the manna in the desert, Sabbath was commanded (Ex 16 v 23). And when we get to the Ten Commandments in ch 20, the 4th commandment is not only listed above murder, but – stand back and look at the page, take a good look and see how long each commandment is – the longest is about Sabbath! In Ex 34 v 21, the Israelites are told that, even if it is a busy time, there is no excuse for breaking the Sabbath.
Why? Well they had been slaves, and were now free, and this is how God wants free people to live. The life with a rhythm that allows time for rest, celebration and space to encounter God is a liberated life.
Reading Exodus you cannot help but get the impression that this really matters to God and is an important sign of the covenant between us and Him. The challenge, in a world where busyness appears unavoidable is: how do we recover the art of lying fallow in the presence of God?
This summer, as we think about holidays and rest, what a challenge to actually take Sabbath rest; to take days when we just rejoice in the freedom we have and the fact that we are no longer slaves. That means we can lavish time-off on our family and friends, and enjoy worship and fellowship without having to look at our watches or worrying about the next thing we must do. We actively stop to remember that we are not slaves to anything, but free in Christ.
May we all enjoy Sabbath rest this summer as we re-charge our physical, mental and spiritual batteries for autumn and the challenge of all that lies ahead.
May God bless you all, Ian (015242 51313 firstname.lastname@example.org)
15 parishioners joined the Vicar for the Walk in July, and enjoyed a morning’s walk in the Kentmere valley. Grateful thanks from all who attended to the Booth family for hosting the event, leading the walk and providing super refreshments. The picture shows everyone relaxing over lunch served on the lawn in front of the farmhouse. Next Walk is on 11 August from Keasden – see calendar for details.
THE PARISH CHOIR welcomes members and friends of each of our 4 churches. Our aim is to support the worship in our churches at special occasions of celebration, Easter, Harvest, Christmas and Confirmation and also enjoy invitations to sing for weddings, Christenings and festive gatherings. Our next rehearsals are on the first 4 Mondays in September. We meet at the Vicarage at 6.30 for 30 minutes, but if you wish a little more time for note practice, do come along at 6pm. Contact Alison at email@example.com (51065) or Viv Shaw at firstname.lastname@example.org (51850) if you would like to join us.