Mr Robert Williams, our local preachers’ secretary for over forty years, led our worship last Sunday and he was warmly welcomed by Keith Harrison. Robert invited us to recite alternate verses of Psalm 100 as our call to worship, “Sing to the Lord, all the world! Worship the Lord with joy; come before him with happy songs!”, and we did sing with happy songs as the five hymns chosen were all well known and loved and we sung with great feeling. The first was “God is here! As we his people meet to offer praise and prayer”, written by F Pratt Green.
Robert offered prayers of praise and thanksgiving following which was said the Lord’s prayer. After a further hymn we said our prayers for others in these troubled times remembering those suffering in the devastating floods in Pakistan for whom we left monetary gifts at the conclusion. Keith Harrison read from Matthew, chapter 15, which was the story of Jesus healing many people and feeding 4,000 men with seven loaves and a few fish, not counting the women and children, yet all had enough. Jill Harrison read from Matthew, chapter 25, the Final Judgement.
In his sermon Robert referred to significant happenings in our lives highlighting that in our times of need we turn to God. He took time to dwell on the difficulties many people have in making ends meet with insufficient to eat. Jesus witnessed this with the multitude who followed him during his ministry, and blessing the seven loaves and small fish he fed them, meeting their immediate need. As Christians, we are fed by the saving Grace of Jesus Christ to whom we turn in our times of need. “What is our response to the compassion shown by Jesus to the crowd in the Matthew story?” asked Robert. Can we not follow in his footsteps as he said later in Matthew, “I tell you, whenever you did this for one of the least important of these brothers of mine, you did it for me!”. We respond by our actions and our words are compelling.