Exminster Methodist Church, Main Road, Exminster EX6 8BT
Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Minister: Rev Ben Haslam, Telephone (01392) 256716
At the very centre of the Christian faith is the conviction that there is no God but the God revealed to us in Jesus Christ. Sadly, that doesn’t stop us worshipping many other gods, gods of our own imagining. We might imagine an angry policeman god. The Father Christmas god. The god who does nothing but bring guilt and fear into his supposedly beloved children. How do we reach beyond these distorted pictures of God and embrace the real thing? Go back to the first sentence: when we see Jesus, we see who God is and we learn that His nature is love and His grace limitless. Being a Christian means nothing less than embarking on a lifelong journey with Jesus, and getting ever closer to the heart of God through prayer, worship, and a conscious decision, every day, to commit ourselves to Jesus afresh and to live by the guiding and strengthening of the Holy Spirit.
One of my great concerns is that, in this country at least, Christianity has come to mean a set of moral instructions, of bland platitudes, being a ‘nice’ person. That’s a feeble, watered down version of the life changing faith that following Jesus really is. It’s a privilege and a joy and the only really fulfilling way to live because – and this is those who see Christian faith as just another ‘lifestyle choice’ fail to understand – it’s what we were created for. Another amazing truth is that, the further we go along this road, the more we become, not religious robots, but our authentic, true selves, the people God wants, and always intended us to be. This doesn’t necessarily make us perfect or better than others. If anything, it makes us more conscious of our need for God and of the ways we fall short of who we could be. It does though, mean that we are equipped to make a real imprint on the world. As St. Catherine of Siena advises, “Be who God created you to be and you will set the world on fire”.