A journey to Lancashire ………

…….. at the end of September took us fromYorkshire through places which had been in the news just a few days earlier. The sandbags still at some front doors were a reminder of how fragile and uncertain our lives can be. However, the welcome in Garstang United Reformed Church was as warm as ever and the church was full for Back to Church Sunday. It was good to know that there were people present who were doing just that – coming back to church.

The Old Testament reading for the day was Numbers chapter 11 – one of those passages in which we learn of God’s anger as the people complain about their situation but in which Moses and God have a conversation which leads to a solution for the time being. The news of the week had included reports of the Greek people coming onto the streets of Athens to protest about their increasing hardship and I wondered whether there were some parallels between the two situations and whether God might not be just a bit angry or maybe frustrated with us humans in the way we complain about our lot even when that lot is the result of our own greed and self-centredness. But we thought too about the relationship which Moses had with God – built through many a conversation throughout the Exodus story – and asked two questions. How can we build a similar relationship with God and are our expectations of prayer rather too self centred. Is it not the case that prayer changes the pray-er more than the prayed for situation?

Following the service we shared lunch – delicious homemade soup and more than enough for everyone – demonstrating to members and visitors alike the generous nature of Christian hospitality. We shared too some stories of the life of this church and of the people who make up the congregation. I heard about some new things which have been tried, new links which have been made and new doors which are planned all to make them and their activities more accessible to the people of the town.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *