1 Feb 2023
“…the time for change is now….”
Greetings in the name of God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
I hope and pray that this letter finds you all well and looking forward what 2023 has in store for you, as individual, and as a church family.
For me, I started the New Year 2023, by setting aside the 2nd of January as my day of prayer in preparation for our Circuit ‘s Vision Day. I had so much to speak to God about and the best place I decided to that was to follow through the Pennine Way Footpath. I didn’t know how rough, muddy and tough the pathway was and I didn’t know how to get there. I met with one Walker who was coming for that direction and pointed me in the right direction. However, he said that the road was really tough, it was too late, and suggested that I should consider going back home. Three times I went forth and backward, he advised me to go back home and come again another day, when the days will be longer, and the weather will be nicer. He kindly also suggested to look for someone to come with. When I was listening to him, I felt afraid and I agreed with him, and turned around three times to come back home but my heart was telling me: the time is now, just go for it, don’t be afraid, you will be fine.
Loud and clear, I heard the same words from the comments made by people who attended to our Vision Day (14th of January, 2023). One of the comments says that it was “a thought provoking and challenging day; the time for change is now and we need to step out the boat and put our trust in God and tell others of his great love and salvation for them.” These are the words I would prayerfully and by God’s grace, repeat to myself and to each one of us. When we step out of the boat, there are potentially many voices, discouragements, and the feeling of not well equipped, so tired, lack of motivations, human resources, we don’t have what it takes, etc. In all honesty it is okay to feel that way. God understands and he promised that we don’t have to do it on our own. When it is the time for change, as individual churches or as a team of churches or individuals, determined to tell others of God’s great love and salvation for them, we put our trust in His promises: “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10. ‘In actions and if necessary, in words’, from our hearts, we can faithfully do our best.
On the 2nd of January 2023, with a bit of determination, I walked through Pennine Way (25000 steps), I followed my heart and made it safely back home despite the rough, muddy pathway and short day. Although, I enjoyed every single breathe of the fresh air along the way, it was not easy but it was achievable.
Indeed, ‘the time for change is now.’ As we step out of the boat, may we all have Jesus’s courage, resilience, grace, wisdom and understanding, and trusting in God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Happy New Year.
Probationer Minister Deacon Marcianne Uwimana.