Deacon Marcianne’s blog – March 2023

Dear friends,

Greetings in the name of God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

In February I joined a craft group at Syke Methodist Church; after learning how to decorate a bottle with light in it, I was ready to come home as I had another meeting in the afternoon. Before I left, one of our regular friends entered the church building and we started talking about our Sunday ‘meet, share and eat’ Fellowship. I asked him if he would be joining us in the morning worship. His answer was simple but so powerful. He said: “I am not interested in Church’s hierarchies and stuff; my spiritual life is about my personal relationship with Jesus.” He continued and said: “Ten years ago, I was diagnosed with a terminal illness; however, Jesus helped me through it, and I am still here, standing and healthyWhen I wake up every morning, I say, ‘good morning, Jesus,’ thanking God for another day to live.”

His words reminded me of one of my favourite songs that I sing every morning: I am alive today; it is by your Grace” by Big Brain (you tube) based on Psalm 92:2 “…proclaiming your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night.” Hearing these words from someone who doesn’t currently go to church was a powerful encounter with God at work in the hearts of his people. It was simply uplifting seeing and hearing people being aware of his presence in their lives, we can greet him with grateful hearts, as our closest friend and say: ‘good morning, Jesus’. The truth of this encounter is that someone else, somewhere along the way, shared the good news of the Gospel with my new friend, and that is how he came to know Jesus and developed a personal relationship with him.  

As we start this Lent season, may the Holy Spirit help us to share our faith stories with those we meet daily. Although we might not know how the Holy Spirit will work in their hearts, we can confidently trust His power. It might take a long time to see the fruits of the seeds we planted daily; we are called to continue planting them faithfully. Even if those we share with choose a different path and don’t join the worship in our physical church buildings, with patience we are to continue: ‘one step at a time.’ The most important thing worth mentioning here is that when we look for an action which might transform our lives and the lives of others, we are also helping them to discover how close God often comes to us. I encourage you to know that he is within us, around us, underneath us, above us, actively and creatively making us new every day. So, we can intimately sing: “Good morning, Jesus. Good morning, Lord, Good morning Holy Spirit, we are alive today”! 

Deacon Marcianne

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Deacon Marcianne’s blog – Christmas ’22

“……more than gifts: Gift Giver….”

Dear friends,
Greetings in the name of God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

December is the last and busiest month of the year, while January is a month of new beginnings. They are not only months in which friends, families and relatives get together to look back and celebrate what they have accomplished, but they are also months that people use to think about new opportunities, new choices, and decisions.

Christmas tree in church

It is also important to remember those who do not have anyone to celebrate with. A time we remember that although we have plenty, there the people who have nothing. Some will be enduring their first Christmas having buried a loved one or their first Christmas since fleeing a war-torn country. Christmas is a wonderful time for some and equally a traumatic time for others.

This is a time for gratitude. From families that are welcoming new-born blessings into the world, to patients who are finally pain-free after long bouts of treatment. All can sit and give thanks to our Creator at this time of year. Give thanks for our abilities and celebrate God’s given gifts (our health, wealth, friends, families, talents, abilities, intelligence, security, freedom, nature, etc..) to humanity.

While, at times, Christmas has become a season of buying, giving, and receiving materials gifts, Christianity encourages us to put our focus on the true Spirit and Heart of Christmas: “The Gift-Giver, Jesus Christ” in our personal lives. As we leave 2022 and enter 2023, may the Gift-Giver bless us all together, with Him, in Him and through Him, we shall not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”