Does the gospel feel more like old news than good news?
Does your Christian walk seem a little more like a treadmill than a journey?
The Christian life is a long walk over all kinds of spiritual terrain. Sometimes the views are amazing. Sometimes you go miles just looking at mud. Sometimes it’s really hard, and other times you find yourself striding along even though the way is steep and full of rocks.
Here’s the thing – whatever the shape of the territory we find ourselves in, Jesus promised to be with us. He sent his Holy Spirit to inhabit us and give us strength, and comfort, and light to see our way. This promise isn’t just a figure of speech. It is real.
But we all go through times when it just doesn’t feel real.
So the question is, how can we open ourselves to the working of God in our hearts so that our faith seems like more than a test we have to pass? How can we find Living Water in muddy pools, and be nourished by the Bread of Life when it seems everything has gone stale?
Well, there is no secret formula. It is actually pretty basic. We must simply go back and re-set our anchor in Jesus. We refocus on the truth of Good News of Jesus Christ, and pray for God to refresh us through his Spirit. And the best way to do that is in community with other like-minded people, all seeking God's living presence together.
That's what Alpha is about. It doesn't matter if you have been in the faith for decades, or if you don't buy into Jesus at all. All questions are fair game and all doubts are up for examination. Together, we talk about what we really think and how we really feel and we ask God to show us his real self.
That’s what I’m praying for United Baptist Church this fall. That together, as a community of Jesus-followers, we will immerse ourselves one night a week in God’s Good News for us in Jesus. And that as we come together, God will be present with us in a way that renews, restores, and refreshes our spirits together.
If that is the kind of recharge you could use, please accept my invitation to attend Alpha at UBC.
Come out Wednesday night September 9 at 6:15. Don’t bother cooking. Be our guest and let us feed you dinner. After dinner, we’ll watch a DVD presentation called “Isn’t there more to life?” Then we will take half an hour or so to talk in small groups about what we heard. That’s it. We’ll be done by 8:45.
Come to the first night. If you find that intriguing, keep coming. We’ll be doing this every Wednesday through the middle of November. On the weekend of October 23 we’ll throw in a special weekend event as well. But there is no commitment, no registration, no one will be taking attendance to see if you are doing your duty. Come to as many as you think will benefit you.
Come and see what God has in store for UBC.
Even if you think you are doing fine, please come. Your participation and prayer will be a great benefit to the rest of us.
I look forward to seeing you there.
Grace and peace.
Pastor Dave Denis