Please find a link to our February 2022 magazine. Paper copies will be available shortly in both of our churches.
In this edition you will find a tribute to David Andrew, a long-standing member of our church family. There are also details of an opportunity to lead our local Mission Community. Plus Fairtrade fortnight and news & views from our various groups.
The February 2022 magazine also has this letter from Elizabeth Binns…
A new start
January is moving on thank goodness. It is such a miserable month with February little better. The weather is poor, the days still short and the bank balance is still showing the impact of Christmas. And now, there is the promise of “massive” increases in our energy bills. Perhaps this is why, in the most miserable months of the year, so many people decide to re-invent themselves in an attempt to escape the gloom.
So it is that this month many of us will have at least a cursory thought about our lifestyle. We will plan and firmly resolve to do better as we admit that we have overeaten and overspent. So, in the coldest, wettest, most miserable part of the year some will become a new person, although most of us won’t. Because apparently it takes 100 days to get a new lifestyle ingrained and the majority of us will be lucky to see our new life through to the weekend.
Now, before you decide not to bother at all, because you are destined to fail (definitely the category that I am in) we have to remember that some people will succeed. Some will develop a healthier lifestyle; some will have smoked their last cigarette or found a diet they can stick to. Yes, some people will change their lives forever and, you know, it could be us.
We can make the challenge and the change a little easier by not trying to do too much, better to succeed with a small thing than fail at a big one. We have to be fair though and we all have many things we could give up/live without – we can all succeed if the only thing we are giving up is something we don’t like or do. Yes, we have to be fair, which is possibly the hard bit.
Perhaps the biggest obstacle to changing our lives, in major or minor ways, is that we don’t take the time to really think about it. We arrived on January 1st thinking this is it, the change starts now and naturally it generally doesn’t. This is a bit ironic because we have just had one of the major periods of the church year when we should really be thinking about how we could change our lives or even help someone else change theirs.
Unfortunately, a lot of Advent gets swallowed up in preparation for Christmas and most of us miss the opportunity to reevaluate our future. Still, we have another opportunity in Lent! Another opportunity to get spiritually fit if not physically fit and as I am (go on say it – obviously) not the one to advise on physical fitness maybe I can comment on that spiritual fitness.
In these dark and gloomy days, when we are full of regrets, let’s try and put all that to one side and remember how much we have, admit the mistakes we have made and ask God for a new start. A new start that we can achieve. No gym membership is necessary, you can put away the information on Peloton bikes and start to enjoy your food and your life again. A little more time in prayer (formal or informal) and little more attention to what we actually have rather than what we think we want and a little more appreciation for everything we share as a community of faith.
And remember God made us and he made us fit for purpose, so somewhere underneath our woollies, post-Christmas pounds and self-doubts that wonderful being is still there. No need to reinvent ourselves, just find what we were made to be. Elizabeth
[For the link to our December & January magazine please press here. Many thanks to Annie Spratt for the photo on Unsplash.]