Hopefully this finds you all well.
On Sunday 23 we had a pretty full Upper church as we hosted a service at the conclusion of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. It was led by Pastor Adrian Roberts from Mirfield’s Zion Baptist church, assisted by myself and the Revd Hugh Baker, the vicar of Mirfield Team parish. Adrian preached very challengingly on the parable of the Good Samaritan and spoke of our, “being moved into the Jesus factor.” With a service themed on racial justice, this all seems particularly relevant – especially given the last week’s bishops’ statement on Living in Love and Faith.
God’s church continues to find itself in stony places through which we must live and move in spite of their hardship and hurtfulness to many. It is sinful. And yet Jesus Christ – the becoming of our indwelling by Spirit and truth – has the power to forgive and free us of our sins irrespective of humanity’s “iron rod”. In the life of his light – the holy and true light – invariably we encounter our neighbour afresh who – like the Samaritan in Luke’s story – just might lift our perception, challenge our presumptions and renew our vision in the transformative power of that grace not ours, but received rather, at the inviting gift of his very wisdom and Word.
Who is my neighbour? Lord, show me how I may help them and not simply walk by on the other side. This, above all things is the blessed sacrament of that unity for which Jesus prays the Father. “That they may all be one.” Have a good week!