The call from our government and health authorities is that we all need to work together. Back in March we all needed to do our bit to flatten the curve, and now in NSW we're all asked to keep playing our part to keep case numbers low. And thank God that in our State at present and in most of Australia the collective effort has decreased the spread. Perhaps through this crisis we'll gain a new appreciation for the part that each of us plays in our collective society, that my actions and your actions have far-reaching consequences, for good or for ill.
This is true also in the church. The church is not a disconnected group of people, one of the more prominent metaphors of the church in the NT is that of a body, ‘Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.’ (1 Cor. 12:27).This metaphor highlights two key connections, we are connected to Christ as the head of the church and we are connected to one another as fellow members of Christ's body. It is by faith in Christ that we become part of his body, as his sacrifice at the cross reconciles and unites to himself (Col. 1:18-20). And the cross also makes peace and unites us as one body, 'His purpose was to make one new humanity' (Eph.2:15).
Being part of a body means we all have a part to play and we all need to work together. Our mission together is to be fellow workers with God, what an amazing privilege! Read the list of fellow workers in Romans 16 to get a sense of what it looks like for men and women, Jew and Greek, rich and poor, new convert and long time saint, to work together as one new body in the Lord. Each has a part to play so that 'we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.' (Eph 4:15-16).
I am so thankful to God for each of you who make up the body of Christ at St Aidan's, and for so many who play their part by serving, praying, teaching, encouraging, showing hospitality, using your time and gifts to build up the body in love. And as we heard in Hebrews last week, let us keep encouraging one another and spurring each other on toward love and good deeds, and all the more as we await the coming of our saviour.
Plans for this Sunday
At present we are in a stage of re-gathering. If you haven't read it yet, this document A guide to regathering at St Aidan's is the plan for August. We've now had one week of all three congregations with a Live meeting, at the same time others are taking up the option of continuing to join online. We recognise that there is a diversity of needs and circumstances among members of our church, and to provide for Sunday worship for everyone we are continuing to make available the Online Service as well as a Live linkup through Zoom at each gathering.
For those choosing to join us in person at 9am, 10.30am or 5pm. We are adhering to:
Social distancing and good hygiene practices
Recording of attendance
Venue capacity requirements
Refraining from congregational singing
As I write this (and check the weather forecast), I'm going to say that we'll plan to have ten30church in the carpark, so please bring along a chair. But if it rains, we'll meet in the church and hall instead.
This Sunday - Hebrews 10:26-39
Obedience, endurance and faithful living are crucial for the Christian who places their faith in Christ. Through trials and persecution and temptation, our confidence must be in the saving work of Jesus, who’s promise of return fills us with great hope so that we might strive to be obedient, endure and remain faithful to the end. Next week - Hebrews 11:1-10.
Kids Church News
This week: Acts 2:1-42
It was so lovely to see so many faces at Kids Church last week. We played games and learnt a special way to share the Good News about Jesus with our friends. Can you remember the 5 phrases we used? See if you can (check down the bottom of the Kids Church News Corner if you need some help). Did you get a chance to share the Good News with anyone this week? I'm looking forward to hearing any stories you have about telling people about Jesus.
This week we are looking at Acts Chapter 2. Before Jesus went back to Heaven he promised to send a helper to his people. In this chapter we see that that helper was The Holy Spirit. If we trust in Jesus then we have the Holy Spirit too. So when it feels hard to follow Jesus or hard to talk to your friends about Jesus or even just when things are feeling sad we can hold onto the fact that we always have the Holy Spirit with us, helping us.
Remember to bring your bible and a drink bottle to Kids church if you are coming along and remember to watch the kids talk on the online service if you cant come.
Next Week: Acts 24: 22-27, 25:1-14, 26:24-32, Paul before the Leaders.
1. God Rules 2.We sinned 3.God Provided 4.Jesus Gives 5.We respond
Women's and Men's Livestream events
'OneLove20' - Women's Conference - Aug 22
One Love is a Katoomba Christian Convention (KCC) conference for women. This year Kara Martin and Amy Orr-Ewing will be speaking on the topic of rest.
A group will be gathering at the conference room in Tulloch Lodge, the building adjacent to St Aidan's, from 9.30am - 1pm, with the option to stay another hour for lunch together, we will order pizza (so please bring some money to chip in) or you can BYO your food. Cost: $45. Registration: Each person needs to register and pay individually. Click here to register and see more details.RSVP: Please reply to Nicole Blyth (0422 325 860) by Wednesday 19th August, This is particularly important as we consider the safe set up of our space.
'Albury Men's Convention' - Aug 29
Also coming up is the 2020 Albury Men's Convention, which will be held via Zoom with a group meeting at St Aidan's from 9am-1pm. Ben Pfahlert will be speaking on our Mission to the world. Cost: $15. Registration:Click here to register and see more details.RSVP: Please reply to Rob Scriven (0408 683 247) who will be organising the group meeting at St Aidan's.
COVID-19 has impacted our whole world. See the video below for an update about the impact it is having in Indonesia, but also how God is at work through his people. We are going to be having a special Compassion Sunday on the 13th of September.
An update on ministry of Compassion in Indonesia
To stay up to date with our online church events, visit staidanswagga.org.au and like us on Facebook.