Thursday 8 March 2018
After a week’s break for IGNITE, last Sunday we resumed our Revelation series as Trevor looked at the Church in Sardis (Rev 3:1-6).
Sardis was a wealthy city with gold and textiles its main trade. In 200BC it boasted the largest temple to Artemis and it also had the largest Jewish temple in ancient times. But their problem was that whilst they looked healthy they were on the point of death. (These medical references gave Trevor an excuse to use a few amusing anecdotes from his life as a GP! Worth a listen if you weren’t there).
The church was accused of being sleepy, if not dead, to the point that they had become incontinent – hence the reference in verse 4 to the few who had not ‘soiled their clothes’. The majority were just not caring for each other – there was a collective community failure and they were warned that if they didn’t wake up they would face the consequences.
They were spiritually weak, having forgotten what they first believed. They were half-hearted in their faith, not experiencing the victory of Jesus in their lives. They were involved in activities that were irrelevant to the growth of the Kingdom. They were typically well off, but spiritually bankrupt.
Can we see similarities today? Do we dream dreams, but then just want to ‘roll over and go back to sleep’ instead of chasing after those dreams? Our church is getting older and we must wake up and reach out to our children, the millennials.
We have a great promise – as Kingdom citizens our names are in the Book of Life, but we have a responsibility to the many who have not accepted Christ. Let us dream dreams, wake up and chase after them!
On Monday evening we hosted a gathering of the Deanery Synod. This was a special occasion during which Bishop Peter, and others, talked about the Deanery Action Plan, which has a vision with three basic elements for us all to sign up to:
– Mission and evangelism must be at he heart of all we do
– Our resources must be realigned towards mission
– We must release the gifts God has given us
And our priorities are:
– To be able to tell our story
– To work in new housing developments, ie meet new residents
– To work with children and young people and young families
The Bishop reminded us of an event when the local churchwarden, giving some safety notices said, ‘When the church catches fire, get out of the church!’ Everyone saw the alternative spiritual meaning behind this instruction!
This coming Sunday we reach the penultimate church in the series our series. Ruth speaks on the Church in Philadelphia (Rev 3:7-13)
10 March – Ladies’ Conference
10 March – Licensing of James Pennington at Deanshanger
16 March – Café Create
16 April – Licensing of James Packman
23 April – APCM
From the SIX30 Team