30 Northumberland Square | North Shields | NE30 1PW
Weekly Update #122 11th September 2022
From Andrew New Term
September feels like a new start, as everything gets going again after the summer lull. Children head off back to school, and young people go to university. The church calendar gets busy too, with Heritage Open Day this weekend, harvest festival later in the month, coffee mornings and meetings.
The season changes, as the leaves begin to turn and summer drifts into autumn.
This month we also have a new Prime Minister and a new government, with a formidable to-do list before them. Perhaps we might spare a thought for those making fresh starts and facing new challenges this September.
PrayerGod of all, we thank you for this new season, and the colours and smells of autumn. We pray for courage for those embarking on new starts, and that new friendships may be formed at school and university. We ask your guidance for the new government in the difficult decisions that they must make for the common good.
WORSHIP SERVICES AT ST COLUMBA’S
WORSHIP SERVICES THIS SUNDAY – Sunday 11 September 10.30 am Communion at church, led by the Reverend Dr Trevor Jamison.
NEXT WEEK – Sunday 18 September 10.30 a.m. Service at church, led by Sgt-Maj Stephen Cook.
Bible readings for this week
Bible readings for Sunday Thirteenth Sunday after Trinity
Exodus 32: 7-14 Moses pleads to turn away God’s wrath against Israel
Psalm 51: 1-10 David repents of his sin and seeks God’s forgiveness
I Timothy 1: 12-17 Jesus had mercy on Paul, the persecutor of Christians
Luke 15: 1-10 Parables of the lost sheep and the lost coin You can read the Bible passages online at https://www.biblegateway.com/
Reflection on the readings
When I was a little boy, I managed to get lost in a department store. There is a feeling in the pit of your stomach when you realise that you have lost something important. In my case, of course, my parents searched for me until they found me, even though it meant a fine for overstaying in the car park.
God sees when we are lost, and comes to seek us out until we are reunited. In the stories Jesus told, God’s love has no limits. It seems foolishly extravagant to abandon ninety-nine sheep to go searching for just one that has got lost (Luke 15: 4), and yet such is God’s love for us. David (in Psalm 51) and Paul (in I Timothy) recognised that they were lost, having gone wrong and done some seriously bad things. They regretted and turned away from those wrong courses of action, and God enabled them to make a clean start.
In Jesus’ parables, we are all invited to come together and rejoice that what was lost is now found (Luke 15: 6, 9-10). Indeed, these stories are more about the found sheep and the found coin, and the gladness that comes from that. Perhaps we should celebrate more in our own lives and in the life of the church when lost things are found, broken things are mended, and when people who were apart are reunited.