Week of Prayer – 05-12 Sept 21

silhouetted person kneels before cross

With the search for a Senior Pastor in progress, the move out of lockdown, the beginning of the new academic year, and updates to our church leadership structure, the need for prayer is as urgent as it has ever been in the history of CBC. And so, we’re calling every person who’s a part of the CBC community – yes, every one of us – to make prayer a priority for this week.


Who can join in? Everyone! All ages and stages can join in. Why not encourage toddlers and children to pray for our church, too. We’re conscious that some may be anxious about meeting in-person in the church building at this time, so there are opportunities to gather in Priory Street on both Sundays, but also opportunities both to pray together in person, and to pray individually, too.


How can I do that? It doesn’t need to be kneeling next to your bed (but you can if that’s where you pray best).  Here are some other suggestions:

  • Pray together at Priory Street: 6pm on Sunday 5th September and Sunday 12th September to start and end the week. 
  • Dedicate your LIFE groups, formation groups, youth groups, small groups, prayer partners, or any other time you get together as believers to praying for CBC this week.
  • Go on prayer walks, prayer sits, prayer zoom meetings, prayer bumbles. (Not sure how to do that? See the How-To Guide attached to these notices called “How to prayer walk.pdf”.
  • Use some of your private prayer time to lift up CBC before God.
  • Commit to pray in one of the time slots during the week of prayer. We’ll have a sign-up list at the back of Priory Street from this Sunday morning. (You can commit individually or as a small group), or you can sign up by emailing Cathy S.

What should I pray for?

Please use this list to guide your prayers during the week of Prayer

Finally… We’ll close the week of prayer with a service of prayer on Sunday 12th at 6pm at Priory Street. We can gather and encourage one another with answered prayers, and by sharing what we feel God has been teaching us during the week. We’ll have a box at the back of Priory Street if you want to share how God is speaking to you throughout the week, or you can email Rob Durant.

 “Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (ESV)

Women’s Bible Study

A warm welcome awaits you at Women’s Bible Study on Monday 27th September starting at 7.30pm at Priory Street.  We are about to embark on a new series and will find ourselves in the gospel of John where we will be looking deeper into the ‘I Am’ statements.

This is an invitation for all women at CBC and Church on the Green; an opportunity for fellowship and to study God’s Word together.  You can download our first study here.  We encourage you to look at this with your study buddy in advance.  If you would like to be paired with a study buddy then please contact Anne H, Victoria K or Christine C.  Contact details can be found in the church directory.

Blessings
Women’s Ministry Team

Notices for Sunday 5th September

Please see the CBC website for important information about our Church Services as the country has now moved into Step 4 of the Government Roadmap (from Monday 19th July).

If you would like to receive the weekly notices via email and don’t already do so, please contact Cathy S.

Please add info@corshambaptists.org to your address book and check your spam folders if you are expecting to receive them but they did not arrive.

Notices are also published on the Church website weekly

This week

Pre-booking is no longer required in order to attend services.

Live streaming of the service will continue for those unable to attend. Do check with Rob D for arrangements at CotG

The sanctuary will be divided into two zones to support our fellowship needs:

  • upstairs for those wearing face coverings – no congregational singing
  • downstairs for those not wearing face coverings – congregational singing

Please note that:

  • you must not attend if you have any Covid symptoms – a new cough, temperature or loss of taste or smell ;
  • you must inform us if you receive a positive Covid test within 14 days of attending ;
  • you will be asked to sign-in for test and trace purposes

Sunday Services

  • COTG are meeting at Rudloe as usual this week. If anyone is unable to join in at the farm, but would still like to gather for worship, they would be very welcome  All details at: https://www.churchonthegreen.online/event/10am-sunday-service-online/ The link to join online is here
  • Priory Street joint service Psalm on the Farm @11am Link: https://youtu.be/bAyFG1pz2P4. Music led by Matt G. : Intercessions by Matt/Kirstyn L and Josh H will preach from Psalm 103
  • Midweek Service: The next Midweek Service is this Wednesday, 15th September at 2pm
  • Junior Church: Rhiannon will provide separate teaching for the children at the farm on Sept 5th so bring a rug or seat for your child to join in with junior church. Speak to Rhiannon for more information.

CBC week of prayer, Sunday 5th – 12th September.

With the search for a Senior Pastor in progress, the move out of lockdown, the beginning of the new academic year, and updates to our church leadership structure, the need for prayer is as urgent as it has ever been in the history of CBC. And so, we’re calling every person who’s a part of the CBC community – yes, every one of us – to make prayer a priority for this week.


Who can join in? Everyone! All ages and stages can join in. Why not encourage toddlers and children to pray for our church, too. We’re conscious that some may be anxious about meeting in-person in the church building at this time, so there are opportunities to gather in Priory Street on both Sundays, but also opportunities both to pray together in person, and to pray individually, too.


How can I do that? It doesn’t need to be kneeling next to your bed (but you can if that’s where you pray best).  Here are some other suggestions:

  • Pray together at Priory Street: 6pm on Sunday 5th September and Sunday 12th September to start and end the week. 
  • Dedicate your LIFE groups, formation groups, youth groups, small groups, prayer partners, or any other time you get together as believers to praying for CBC this week.
  • Go on prayer walks, prayer sits, prayer zoom meetings, prayer bumbles. (Not sure how to do that? See the How-To Guide attached to these notices called “How to prayer walk.pdf”.
  • Use some of your private prayer time to lift up CBC before God.
  • Commit to pray in one of the time slots during the week of prayer. We’ll have a sign-up list at the back of Priory Street from this Sunday morning. (You can commit individually or as a small group), or you can sign up by emailing Cathy S. at cathys@corshambaptists.org

What should I pray for?

Please use this list to guide your prayers during the week of Prayer

Finally… We’ll close the week of prayer with a service of prayer on Sunday 12th at 6pm at Priory Street. We can gather and encourage one another with answered prayers, and by sharing what we feel God has been teaching us during the week. We’ll have a box at the back of Priory Street if you want to share how God is speaking to you throughout the week, or you can email Rob Durant at robd@corshambaptists.org

 “Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (ESV)

Psalm on the Farm: Sunday 5th September

Hopefully the weather will be slightly drier than last time!

Bring your own Communion and all are very welcome to stay for a picnic afterwards and a good catch up with friends.

If getting to the farm is problematic, then please contact the church office and we will try to arrange a lift. Volunteers are needed to drive cars/ minibus – please get in touch if you can help.

In the interests of making the service as accessible as possible, those who may struggle with mobility are welcome to drive their cars through into the field and remain in them if this helps. The team are also looking into a live stream for any unable to attend but the cows are not currently fitted with Wifi so this is a challenge!

Junior Church on the Farm

Rhiannon will provide separate teaching for the children at the farm on Sept 5th so bring a rug or seat for your child to join in with junior church. Speak to Rhiannon for more information.

Next Steps for Junior Church

From September 12th we will be running 2 groups for children in Junior Church.  We will continue to meet in the garden at 10am for worship together before splitting in to 2 teaching groups; a younger group that will be for children up to year 3 and an older group for years 4 to 6.  We will run two separate groups providing there are enough children in each group to make it viable. You will be able to leave your child with us and join in the service in the sanctuary. This is a fantastic opportunity for you to speak to Rhiannon to find out about serving in Junior Church, if you want to know more about children’s work Rhiannon can be found in the garden.

Toddlers at CBC

Toddlers starts again on Thursday 9th September and will be meeting each week apart from half term. It will be 10.00am to 11.30am (but may have to finish earlier if very wet). We’ll be meeting in the crèche, gazebo and gardens and  will be booking 20 spaces each week on our Facebook page (to see how it goes).  We’re hoping to offer free play, craft table, singing time and refreshments -if we have enough helpers.

Please pray for the team, for new helpers and for reaching out to children and their carers with God’s love. And for good weather on a Thursday morning!!

Women’s Bible Study

A warm welcome awaits you at Women’s Bible Study on Monday 27th September starting at 7.30pm at CBC.  We are about to embark on a new series and will find ourselves in the gospel of John where we will be looking deeper into the ‘I Am’ statements.
This is an invitation for all women at CBC and Church on the Green; an opportunity for fellowship and to study God’s Word together.  You can download our first study here.  We encourage you to look at this with your study buddy in advance.  If you would like to be paired with a study buddy then please contact Anne H, Victoria K or Christine C.  Contact details can be found in the church directory.
Blessings
Women’s Ministry Team

Bike for Bible’s 2021

Corsham Baptist Church supports Bible Society and we’re also very passionate about everyone having a Bible. Matt and I are doing a sponsored bike ride 6-9 September, riding 200 miles over the Devon Coast to Coast route. The money we raise will be used to provide Bibles for Sunday Schools in Malawi. If you’d like to sponsor us, please visit our Just Giving page. https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/wingraves-bikeforbibles2021. Thank you for your prayer and financial support.

Matt & Sue Wingrave


Other Activities:

  • Souper Friday continues to reach out to our community and neighbours
  • Community Money Advice is handling work remotely, but do get in touch if you are aware of or are having money difficulties ;
  • Several small groups meet and share online.
  • Youth Groups- Contact Dan for further details

Please send items for next week’s notices to Cathy S by 12 noon on Wednesday

Twelve Steps Towards Freedom: Towards Glasgow 2021

This post by Dave Gregory was originally published at Seventy Two

The climate is changing.

Not the political climate.  Nor the economic one.

Nor the cultural or social climate of our nation.

Well, truth be told, these are always on the move.

But no.  I mean the Earth’s climate is changing.

Unless you have failed to watch the news, you can hardly not notice.  Stories of heat waves across the world, forest fires across North America, the Mediterranean and Russia.  Intense rainstorms and floods in Turkey and Japan.  And these are just some of the headline events from the BBC News App.

Scattered stories that are brought together in the latest, robust science report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published in mid-August.  Commentators describe its message as urgent.  Scientists say the warming of the Earth due to human activity is unequivocal.  This is the sixth report released by the IPCC, the first being in the 1990s.  Having read these reports over the past 30 years, starting when I was working on developing Climate Models in the Hadley Centre, a sense of frustration arises within me.  As one speaker at the press conference to mark the report’s release said “You scientists have been speaking for 30 years, but we have not been listening.  Now climate change is with us”.  I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.  Feel affirmed, be in despair or scream!

Of course, some have been listening.  Campaigning groups, development, and mission agencies of which BMS World Mission is one, have been speaking for many years.  There have been marches and action on the streets of cities across the world.  The growth of the Baptist Union Environment Network (BUEN) across most of our the Baptist Together regions shows a rising engagement with environmental issues among us, a move from the margins towards the core of our missional discipleship.  Many churches are holding a Climate Sunday, not only engaging with the issue in worship, but committing to longer term action through schemes such as A Rocha’s Eco-church.  Speaking out too, calling for action by signing up to The Climate Coalition’s The Time is Now declaration.

The fact that the UK is hosting the next UN Climate Conference – the 26th one, hence COP26 – in Glasgow in the first two weeks of November is galvanising action.  A previous meeting, COP21 in Paris in 2015, led to The Paris Agreement, where 196 countries across the world agreed to take action to limit global warming by the end of the 21st century to 2 degrees Centigrade, and if possible 1.5 degrees centigrade.  Yet turning words into action, as you may know from personal experience, is hard and progress has been slow as nations argue who is most responsible for the crisis, who should pay most and who should take the first step.

Thankfully there has been movement, with large emitters of warming greenhouse gases making cuts and promising to cut further.  This is important if we are to reach net-zero carbon by 2050, where human activities release no more greenhouse gases that nature can absorb.   But these cuts so far mean the world will warm by 2.5 to 3 degrees by the end of the century.  Bigger cuts are needed through this coming decade if we are to keep alive the hope of 1.5 degrees of warming that will avert catastrophic climate and weather change.  If not, then future generations will have to live with the consequences, as will wider creation.  That is why it is vital – I say again vital – that at COP26 the nations make commitments to deeper cuts in green gas emissions than they have done so far.

Baptist Christians and churches are activists by nature.  A friend from another stream of the church once told me “I could never be a Baptist – it’s just too exhausting!”  And all the calls to action, to engage with the climate crisis that flow into our TV, phones, and computers daily can feel exhausting.  As can the huge nature of it all.  And after the past 18 month living with Covid, many people feel exhausted already.  Exhausted and anxious.  As things began to open in the early summer, I visited a secondary school to speak about climate change to a group of year 10 students, part of the Gen Z generation.  I asked them if they were anxious about their future because of climate change.  Responses varied from group to group.  Many stood; others did not.  I asked why they had responded as they did, and the voice of one sticks in my mind; “I’ve got so many things to be anxious about, I can’t cope with anything else.”

Jesus knew about immobilising effects of exhaustion and anxiety.  After the twelve disciples had an intense time of “campaigning” for the Kingdom of God, he invited them to “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”  (Mark 6v31).  So as we move towards Glasgow 2021 and the COP26 climate jamboree, take some time to get some rest.

That may seem counterintuitive especially if this is such a vital moment for the future generations and life on the planet.  Surely, resting can wait until this campaigning season is over!  If we are going to tackle climate change, we are going to change some other climates too – political, economic, cultural, social – and action and campaigning plays a part in that.  But we need to change the spiritual climate as well.  As Jesus said later in Mark’s gospel, “from within, out of people’s hearts. Come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly.”  (Mark 7v22)   Many of these inner attitudes has given rise to actions and structures in our world that are tied to the causes of climate change. Actions, structures, behaviour in which we are all deeply embedded.  And if they are to change deeply, they need a change within.

So, in the weeks ahead, take some time to listen to your own heart’s response to the issue of climate change.  Take some time to walk around in nature or spend time in the garden.  Take sabbath moments, an act of resistance to those things of our lives that drive exhaustion and anxiety, which contribute to the causes of climate change.  Listen to what God is saying through creation.  I had experience of this over the summer when I was staying as the foot of Ben Nevis near Fort William.  As I looked through the window of the cottage kitchen, across a dry-stone wall into a small planation of trees, a deer with her fawn appeared.  So well camouflaged, almost invisible.  An invitation from our creator to encounter God afresh in creation for our God “is like a gazelle or a young stag.  Look!  There he stands behind our wall, gazing through the windows … (saying) … ‘arise … come with me’”.  (Song of Solomon 2v9)  Drawing me towards a deeper appreciation of nature, which God values, and greater a desire to seek its fulness.

And as we take time seeking God for ourselves, as our heart changes, let that flow into prayer, for prayer changes climates too.  Campaigning voices are rising as we get closer and closer to COP26.  We too should be a part of that.  But we as people of faith and followers of Jesus have another voice to raise, the voice of prayer.  Paul encouraged Timothy as he led the church in Ephesus “that requests, prayers, intercessions and thanksgiving be made for everyone – for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.  This is good, and pleases God our Saviour, who wants all people to be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth.”  (1 Timothy 2v1-4).

So, as we take time out with God, let’s pray for change:

A changed political climate – that world leaders will recognise the need for and have the courage together to commit to cuts in greenhouse gas emissions over the coming decade so we might have the hope of curtailing dangerous climate change;

A changed economic climate – less about a few consuming more and more at the expense of others who seem to have less and less, but seeks to give life to all and make amends to those who have contributed least to the issue of climate change but feel its impacts most dramatically;

A changed cultural climate – less about instant gratification, being driven and throwing away, and more about valuing experiences, people and things we need for the long term;

A changed social climate – building harmonious relationships between peoples near and far, across generations and with creation, appreciating how our actions today shape others lives now and into the future.

As well as a changed spiritual climate.  Yes, let’s hold our Climate Sundays to bring this issue from the margins towards the centre of our understanding of mission in this day.  Let’s raise our voices along with our prayers for ourselves and others.  Let’s begin to be the answer to our prayers, beginning the journey to walk more softly upon the earth as churches and individuals.  And let’s ask God too to turn around our hearts, attitudes and actions, hearing his call through creation to “Arise, come, my darling, my beautiful one, come with me.”  (Song of Songs 2v13).

Come and join with God’s mission within all creation.

 

The post Twelve Steps Towards Freedom: Towards Glasgow 2021 appeared first on Seventy Two.

Finding Jesus in the most ‘unlikely of places’

This post by Ellie Barrett was originally published at Seventy Two

As we look at the life of Jesus on earth, we see that He consistently makes a point of spending time with people who others would not. His time with the woman at the well (John 4:1-26) is one of these times and is part of a great demonstration that there is no one in society Jesus wouldn’t want to pursue. This woman was at the edge of society, coming to the well for water at noon in the heat of the afternoon to make sure she wouldn’t be seen by others who may judge or avoid her. As it says in the scripture, it was not the done thing for Jesus a Jew to associate with a Samaritan woman (John 4:9). But she needed something that only Jesus could give and so He stepped over a cultural boundary to bring her love, conviction and the offer of eternal life.

“…Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:14

Jesus was often intentionally in the most unusual of places. Those places which had been rejected by the current religious culture. One of these places today is the Strip Club industry. For Christians, these are places to be avoided at all costs. While it is true that it would be unwise as Christians to casually step into a Strip Club or a context that would be a compromise of our values, Jesus shows us that there also must be a context where we can love, impact and bring Jesus to people groups like this one. Just as with the Samaritan woman, every person on this earth has needs only Jesus can fulfil. We are called to partner with Him in reaching those in need (Matthew 28:18-20). The questions are who, how, and what does this look like?

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”  Matthew 28:19

For us at Third Space Ministries, this looks like building relationships with Strip Clubs and sending in small groups of women who are trained and accountable once a week. They offer sweet treats, conversation, prayer and support to the women they encounter. This leads to opportunities for deeper conversations about faith, long term discipleship outside of the clubs and practical support depending on the needs of the individual. Through this we are able to introduce women to Jesus who may not usually feel comfortable or allowed to be themselves around Christians, visit a Church or explore faith.

Three years on from the start of ministry we have the access and strategy that allows us to reach women who work in Strip Clubs. To begin with however, all we had was a heart for an industry and time to pray for God to show us the way where it felt like there was no way. We didn’t know where to start but we knew Jesus would know the way and would already be moving in these places. After 18 months of prayer walking we felt God reveal our next step and over the next few months we aimed to build a relationship with the club God had highlighted but with no particular plan. We watched amazed, as God opened doors and connected us with all the right people to launch our ministry.

Because of the people Jesus chose to associate with, we know that even if it wouldn’t be the first place we would go as Christians, there is no person or culture that Jesus isn’t looking to impact today. For any person, place or culture we turn our eyes to, we will see that God is present, moving and ready for you and I to capture His heart for them. If we as Christians have a heart for a mission field, we can guarantee Jesus is already there, going before us and showing us the way. We can be confident in the assurance that we don’t need to go in blind trying to find a way to bring Jesus somewhere in our own strength. All we need to do is spend time asking Jesus where He is in that place, honour Him and welcome His already existing pursuit of those He created.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take”  Proverbs 3:5-6

Strip Clubs is one of the places that we as Third Space Ministries felt God was leading us. Maybe for you God is highlighting another place or group of people? What do you see around you as you walk around your neighbourhood, your workplace, or the places you like to visit to unwind? Maybe in these places there are cultures or people groups you would love to impact but you wouldn’t know where to start? Maybe there are people you wouldn’t usually notice or come across. Maybe like the woman at the well they wouldn’t expect you to want to associate with them because of the culture you are both surrounded by. Only you will know who God is leading you to. I can tell you though, that He will be leading you to someone, and if He is He will show you the way.

 

The post Finding Jesus in the most ‘unlikely of places’ appeared first on Seventy Two.

2021-2022 BIBLE STUDY!!!

This post by kathylarkman was originally published at GRACE PLACE

Dear Sisters in Christ

We are about to embark on a new series for our monthly bible studies!  This year we will find ourselves in the gospel of John where we will be digging deeper into the ‘I Am’ statements.

Our first meeting will be Monday 27th September 2021 @ 7.30pm @ CBC

Please find below the first set of study notes prepared by Sharon.  We encourage you to look at the study notes with your study buddy.  If you would like a buddy then please contact Anne H, Victoria K or Christine C.

May you be richly blessed as you look at this first study.

Meanwhile, know that you are loved and prayed for.  We look forward to seeing you all on 27th!

Every Blessing

Women’s Ministry Team

BEHOLD OUR GOD!
Study Buddy Questions on John 1:1-18

The opening of John’s Gospel is magnificent and soaring and beautiful and astonishing.

It can also be confusing, for all sorts of reasons.

For instance, there are two people called John who speak in verses 1-18, John the Gospel Writer, and John the Baptist (aka John the Witness).

Also, John the Gospel Writer reuses certain words over and over again, adding layers of detail to each one and building a bigger picture of who Jesus is. But this can sometimes feel like a long tangle to unknot.

To help keep this very familiar passage fresh, read the passage aloud together, slowly. One of you can read the words of John the Gospel Writer and the other read John the Witness.

  • John the Gospel Writer: Verses 1-5
  • John the Witness: Verses 6-8
  • John the Gospel Writer: Verses 9-14
  • John the Witness: Verse 15
  • John the Gospel Writer: Verses 16-18

Now read John 1:1-18.

What does this passage reveal about Jesus?

  1. John the Gospel Writer uses a number of key Titles to introduce the Hero of the Gospel – Jesus Christ. What does John teach us about Jesus by pointing out that he is…
    1. the Word (1-5, 14)
    2. the Light (4-5, 9-11)
    3. full of Grace and Truth (14, 16-17)
  2. What two things does John the Witness say about Jesus? (Verses 6-8 and 15)
  3. Where is the name of Jesus first mentioned in John’s Gospel?
    Compare this with Mark chapter 1.
    What sort of impact does John give to Jesus by introducing him as he does?

What does this passage reveal about human nature (and, therefore, me)?

  1. Since only Jesus is like this, as he alone is the One and Only Son, what do verses 4-5, 10-11 and 18 reveal about human nature?
  2. Look back at verses 12-13. Who are the people that are children of God? How can anyone become a child of God?

So what?

Many commentators pick up on two keywords in this passage, which run through the whole Gospel: Word and Witness.

  1. Word: What does it mean to ‘receive’ Jesus, the Word (verses 12-13)? How can you tell if you have or have not ‘received’ him?
  2. Witness: Verse 18 is very clear; no one has ever seen God. Whose witness about God are you listening to? What informs your worldview and picture of God? Where are you going to, to find out the truth about God?

Prayer

  • Give thanks for who Jesus is. At just the right time, God sent Him to us!
  • Confess when you have rejected the Word-Life-Light-Jesus, hidden in darkness, tried yourself to be Word-Life-Light-Jesus and sought the truth elsewhere.
  • Ask God’s Holy Spirit to guide you into all truth and see Jesus for who he really is. Ask him to help you take hold of him every day, to receive him, to trust him as the one who is full of grace and truth.