I have a few questions to ask, let’s see how many people know the answers!
Q. What happened in January 1995?
A. On January 22 nd the Bridge met for the fist time?
Q. Who was the first leader of the Bridge?
A. Peter Hancock
Q. Was it a stand alone venture or were there other churches from the Circuit involved at the beginning?
A. Other churches in the circuit were involved at the start,
Q. What preparation was done before the Bridge came into being?
A. A survey was carried out through Burbage to find out how people felt about the church,
Can anyone remember any of the questions?
- Whether or not they did go to a church, if not
- Was there a particular reason?
- What social activities would they like to see in the area.
- Would they be happier meeting in a church building or a secular
Q. Is there anyone here who was part of that first community?
A. The Bolesworth family, Monica, John and JudithQ. When did Tim Lea take over the leadership of The Bridge?
A. September 2002.
Q. What are some of the activities we gave done @ the Bridge over the years?
- Pony rides and cream teas,
- BBQ ‘s
- Wine tasting.
- The Carnival
- The Labyrinth ( for the school and the local churches)
- Mens Moot~
- Ladies Latte
Q. When did Tim Lea leave?
A. September 2013
So here we are in 2014 the start of a new Year in Methodist circles with a ” “completely different team.”
What does it look like now? Joy is our Leader, Dale is new Youth Worker and I’m assistant Leader. Things have changed; they have changed a lot from when the Bridge first began, but the essence of the Bridge is still there.
We want to reach out to those around us and tell them how relevant God is to us in this day and age, He’s not a thing of the past but working in us and through us in our individual lives and in the world at large.
We want others to know Jesus, and experience the same sort of relationship we have with Him and His Father – God.
That was a modern clip based on our reading for today,
How would you react to someone who suddenly gone from being unable to ever walk to being able to run around and jump about?
Let’s read the account from Acts chapter 3
Acts 3: 1-11. New Living Translation
Peter Heals a Crippled Beggar
3 Peter and John went to the Temple one afternoon to take part in the three o’clock prayer service. 2 As they approached the Temple, a man lame from birth was being carried in. Each day he was put beside the Temple gate, the one called the Beautiful Gate, so he could beg from the people going into the Temple. 3 When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for some money.
4 Peter and John looked at him intently, and Peter said, “Look at us!” 5 The lame man looked at them eagerly, expecting some money. 6 But Peter said, “I don’t have any silver or gold for you. But I’ll give you what I have. In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene,[a] get up and[b] walk!”
7 Then Peter took the lame man by the right hand and helped him up. And as he did, the man’s feet and ankles were instantly healed and strengthened. 8 He jumped up, stood on his feet, and began to walk! Then, walking, leaping, and praising God, he went into the Temple with them.
9 All the people saw him walking and heard him praising God. 10 When they realized he was the lame beggar they had seen so often at the Beautiful Gate, they were absolutely astounded! 11 They all rushed out in amazement to Solomon’s Colonnade, where the man was holding tightly to Peter and John.
Change can be daunting, this man could now walk after a lifetime of being lame, and we read he held on tightly to Peter, but with God at the helm we are in safe hands,
I’m sure we’ve all watched a football match, or some other sporting activity, when in the first half, one of the teams just doesn’t seem to get the breaks they need, they go off at half time only to come back and win the game. Their coach knows what to say to encourage them, to help them direct their energy into playing a better game, they look to him for guidance and instruction, and by us putting our trust in God and following the example of Jesus and allowing the Holy Spirit to work in our lives thats what we are doing day by day.
The disciples were feeling defeated after Jesus had been crucified, devastated by events, but God sent the Holy Spirit to renew them, He moulded them into a “completely different team,”
It would have been easy for Peter to have thought, Jesus was the captain and I did the following, now it’s my turn to be in the spotlight but he didn’t, he brought back
to mind things Jesus had taught them , He remembered Jesus sending the disciples out and giving them authority to cast out demons and heal the sick, He told them to go out and tell those they met about the Kingdom of God, we can read about that in
Luke 9: 1-6 The New Living Translation
Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Disciples
9 One day Jesus called together his twelve disciples and gave them power and authority to cast out all demons and to heal all diseases. 2 Then he sent them out to tell everyone about the Kingdom of God and to heal the sick. 3 “Take nothing for your journey,” he instructed them. “Don’t take a walking stick, a traveler’s bag, food, money, or even a change of clothes. 4 Wherever you go, stay in the same house until you leave town. 5 And if a town refuses to welcome you, shake its dust from your feet as you leave to show that you have abandoned those people to their fate.”
6 So they began their circuit of the villages, preaching the Good News and healing the sick.
How does this all relate to us?
Change began to happen when Tim took on the leadership at the Bridge in 2002 and over the 11 years TIm was with us, the Bridge became different, we started doing things in a differently. The Bridge went from just having a leader, to having a Youth Worker and then having an assistant leadership well. Community activities increased, we not only had Pony rides an cream teas, but we joined in with the carnival, Men’s Moot and Ladies Latte were formed. Then last September Tim left the Bridge and once again change is inevitable, it is happening now. Joy is no longer our youth worker but has taken on the role of Leader at the Bridge,Dale has joined us to work with the young people and be our Youth Worker, and I am here as Assistant Leader, once again we will be back to 3 members of staff, it’s a new team though now and we need to be looking to God to show us the way forward. When change takes place there is often a settling time, you need to take stock and I think that’s what we’ve been doing to a curtain extent and I’m sure it will continue for a while, we have to all get to know each other again and we need to claim God’s promises to us. God has commissioned us as His disciples today, not just the leadership team, but all of us , we’re all in it together, He can and will fill us with His Holy Spirit and lead us forward.
He has new plans for us, because we are a new team. In Jeremiah 29 we read, I know the plans I have for you, says The Lord, ” they are plans for good and not disaster, to give you a future and hope. In those days when you pray I will listen. If you look to me wholeheartedly you will find me. I will be found by you says The Lord.
Peter and John allowed God to open their eyes, they didn’t want glory for themselves but God, it wasn’t easy! By allowing God to work through them, in healing and speaking out the gospel, the good news of Jesus and how He can change our lives, they were taken to task. They had to give account to officials, they didn’t hide behind cliches they were open in every aspect, in Acts 3:17
They told everyone, it wasn’t them that had healed the man but the faith they and the man had in Jesus, and this was the very Jesus they… The rulers had killed, they had put Him on the cross and He died at their hands. But Peter went on to say although they did it in ignorance they were fulfilling Gods will. Their faith was very visible, they weren’t ashamed of it. Is our faith that visible, do we show Jesus in our lives 24/7 on our front line ….. when we are at work, out shopping taking the children to school, or football or other activities.
We read in Romans
Romans 1:16-17The Voice (VOICE)
16 For I am not the least bit embarrassed about the gospel. I won’t shy away from it, because it is God’s power to save every person who believes: first the Jew, and then the non-Jew. 17 You see, in the good news, God’s restorative justice is revealed. And as we will see, it begins with and ends in faith. As the Scripture declares, “By faith the just will obtain life.”
Is that what we truly believe, and is that how we live our daily life.
As we move forward now, as a new team together all of us, I really pray God will fill each one of us with his Holy Spirit and we are able to share the good news of Jesus death and His resurrection and His saving grace and mercy to all we meet.
We’re going to have a time of reflection, where we can bring our thoughts to God.
Hide me Now Under Your Wing
Let us go now to love and serve The Lord