Last weekend we saw something you don’t see in many churches in the UK these days. The place was packed!
For the last year or so, Baptism and Christening services at my home church, Grayfriars, have been standing room only affairs. This particular weekend saw 25 people being confirmed from several congregations across Reading. I always love this kind of service, as the body of Christ welcomes new members as they publicly profess their faith. We’ve taken to having times of testimony during the ceremony, and I’m so encouraged to hear the individual stories of God at work in people’s lives.
The thing I really enjoyed about this particular weekend, was the talk given by the Bishop of Reading. He preached on John 6, where Jesus has just delivered some hard teaching that causes many who have been following him to leave. But the disciples have seen that glimpse of God through Jesus, that causes them to stay even though they know it could cost them everything. Peter exclaims, perhaps in exasperation, “to whom shall we go?” We were challenged to think about the point that those getting confirmed and baptised had reached in their journey of faith. Did they have all the answers? Did they know that they were going to follow Christ beyond doubt for the rest of their lives? Did they know that they could lead a life worthy of their calling? No, no and no! But they had seen enough to lay their lives into the hands of the Father.
They’re in for an amazing journey!