People Get Ready…
Dear Minster and friends
There is a modern expression – an ear worm. Not a particularly nice thought, but is a way of describing a phrase or tune that gets lodged in your brain and wont go away! That catchy little thing that wont go away no matter how hard you try to dislodge it. Sometimes these can bug you, but sometimes they can inspire. The most annoying earworm of the last few months in our household (thanks to the kids I suspect) was a Charlie Puth song: “I love you dangerously, ooh ooh ooh ooh ooh ooh”. If this has infected your home, then I commiserate.
But sometimes these phrases, these catches of notes, these audio loops can reinforce what is positive. The Bible encourages us to sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs’ and these can help us dwell on what is noble, good and spiritually positive. An old Gospel theme that found its way into the song repertoire of people as varied as Aretha Franklin, Rod Stewart and Eva Cassidy is ‘People get Ready’.
There’s a train a-coming
You don’t need no baggage
You just get on board
All you need is faith
To hear diesels humming
You don’t need no ticket
You just thank the Lord
Yeah yeah yeahPeople get ready
For the train to Jordan
Picking up passengers
From coast to coast
Faith is the key
Open the doors and board them
There’s room for all
Among the loved and lost
Versions of songs with the theme of the gospel train, are woven into some of the earliest spirituals from America, and even poems from Scotland from 1882, written and sung when trains were emerging onto the scene of consciousness, and carving up new territories of inland continents all over the world. The trains created opportunities and discoveries, shredding journey times from days to hours. (These would include ‘Swing low, sweet chariot’, as well as ‘The gospel train is coming…’) I wonder if you think of God on the move inviting you to get on board – invited through grace, but swept up in his plans and purposes which would ‘carry us home’. The Kingdom of God opens our hearts and minds to new possibilities and areas of interest, study and discovery that had previously felt shut off or too far away.
And as I say ‘yes’ to wanting to ‘get on board’ I also find myself praying that we would write the positive songs which can become the noble earworms of the next generation.
News and Notices!
First of all – a very big thank you to the Farm Team – who prepared and hosted the most wonderful Bank Holiday experience with lambs, a wildlife walk and live spinning wheel fro guests, visitors and members of the congregation on Bank Holiday Monday.
Secondly – we will be really pressing in to pray this Sunday as our country heads towards a general election, and the children will be invited to pray for other children in situations more challenging in their own during the Sunday School slots in the morning service. Several members of the congregation have set aside time to skip some meals and fast and pray as well. Let us be sure to vote wisely, responsibly and prayerfully, and for fair, free and peaceful elections. So many citizens around the world have none of these freedoms and it is such a privilege to use the votes entrusted to us.
This Sunday – We have Tracy Cottrell preaching as we finish our series on ‘Hearing the voice of God’. Tracy is in great demand as a speaker and trainer, and helps lead the team at LICC (London Institute of Contemporary Christianity) and as well as being a key member of our congregation, she has a particular heart to equip contemporary Christians to be effective in their workplaces.
There will be all the normal children’s’ groups available, prayer before the service at 9.45, and refreshments served from 10am.
– Fast with us on Saturday 3rd June ahead of World Prayer day on Sunday 4th.
– Song-writing Workshop, Saturday 3rd June; Come to the Big Barn to explore your creative side through writing songs, poems, meditating on scripture- and whatever else you feel led to! 2:30-5pm.
– BIG QUESTIONS sermon series starting on June 11th with “Does Truth Really Matter?”…Who could you invite?