Senior Steward Bunty Hodgkins warmly welcomed our preacher Peter Williams, who introduced the first hymn by Charles Wesley “Father of everlasting grace thy goodness and truth we praise”. There followed prayers from the Psalms “For he is the Lord our God we are His people and the sheep of his pasture.” Peter went on to offer up prayers for world peace, with thoughts especially devoted to the people we now see suffering in Ukraine.
It is a tradition of our church that the younger members of the gathering withdraw at this point in the service to the “Junior Church” being a separate space of their own overseen by Yvonne Marson when a toddler vocally refused to leave the main assembly. Peter could not help but comment how reassuring it was to encounter such a staunch member of the congregation clearly wishing to stay for the his Sermon!
The Bible reading was taken from The 5th book of Joshua verses 1-15. This is the account of Joshua, exultant, after crossing the Jordan River, made possible by God drying up the riverbed. At this moment Joshua’s enemies were paralysed by fear so he stops to have the entire people of Israel circumcised before facing the walls of Jericho. Then he encounters a spiritual personage/angel of the Lord who reminds a now humbled Joshua that God is in control. Our preacher pointed out that this is an important lesson for us all. We need to accept that we are all dependent on God