The scheduled bible reading for yesterday that we studied at morning prayer in church, was one of my all time favourites (if one can be allowed such a thing!). Luke 17. 11- 19 recounts the occasion where Jesus encounter ten lepers who ask to be healed. They are instructed to present themselves before the priest, and when faithfully embarking on the journey, find themselves restored to full health. As as result, one of the ten, a Samaritan, is compelled to return to Jesus, expressing his thanks and praise.
It’s a reading which for me encapsulates a lot of what we as a church are hoping to do as we seek to mirror the holistic ministry of Jesus. We see a desire to bring about physical healing (they are cured), the re-entry into community (after the priest's declaration that they are healed), and for one, a spiritual awakening (as he is moved to seek out Jesus, to share his gratitude and worship). In a plethora of ways, we trust that these various aspects health and wholeness are addressed and enhanced through our ministries on Sunday and throughout the week.
One aspect in particular - establishing and maintaining community - was the focus of our thoughts and prayers last Sunday. We concluded that the re-generation of a community involved far more than simply re-building houses, and that the re-conection of individuals, both with God and with one another is a crucial part of rediscovering how and who we were created to be. Of course the church plays an important part of this process and so as the weekend approaches, can I encourage you to join us as our regeneration/renewal series continues on Sunday morning? We will be welcoming a guest preacher Deirdre Brower-Latz, principal of the Nazarene College, and formerly minister of Longsight Nazarene Church, who will help us look at the renewal of the church, which I know will be both challenging and encouraging.