Spotlight on Moses: One of the joys of being at The Triangle is the variety and interest of Sunday worship. The mix of lay preachers and visiting Ministers with our own Minister, Revd Hilary Howarth, gives freshness to every service.
This week (Sunday 19th March) we welcomed a Deacon*, Rachel Thomas-Prasad and her family. And what a fun hour-and-a half we had!
Rachel hails from the Howarth school of Ministers, cheerful and warm, and her theme was one of the great Bible figures - Moses. But, what to explore about this mighty man ... Moses in the bulrushes?
Moses and the Ten Commandments? Moses and the parting of the waters? Or Moses and the burning bush? Rachel settled for the latter and invited the children to build a burning bush in the middle of the Nave. Fear not, dear Reader, the flames were paper ones, handed us as we came into the Triangle out of the endless rain. While they worked, we watched a dramatised reading of Moses and the burning bush.
"God challenged Moses", Rachel told us, "today He challenges each one of us to follow Him and be His disciple. Is there something God is prompting us to do, in our lives or in the life of this church?" She asked us to think about it and write our own challenges on our paper flame. Next we watched a Lego video of the story of the parting of the waters and the destruction of Pharaoh's army (Exodus 14: 15-31) and sang 'How did Moses cross the Red Sea?' 'Did he swim, row, jump, drive or fly? we chorused with all the actions!
In her sermon Rachel reminded us that Jesus calls us to do impossible things - except that, with Him, all things are possible. She described her own fears when she left her teaching career to follow her true calling. Just as the Israelites called out in their hour of need and were led by a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night, so we are asked to trust and follow. The children handed out a stone to every member of the congregation on which to write our name as a reminder that God has called us, too. "No two stones were alike, or perfect or unblemished", Rachel said. "Like them Christ accepts us just as we are".
And the hymns? They, too, chimed with the story of Moses. Accompanied by the full Praise Band - boosted by saxophone, flute, clarinet and French horn - we sang 'A New Commandment', 'We are marching in the light of God', 'Moses, I know you're the man', 'Give thanks with a grateful heart', 'Will you come and follow me', and ended with a resounding 'Great is Thy faithfulness'. In between, the youngest of the Sunday school children gave us a charming little number, 'All through history'.
'Life is a puzzle', read the caption on the big screen as we headed for the cafe. 'Look here for the missing Peace'. Just so!
*Note for the scholarly: In the Methodist church Deacons are men and women called by God to serve in many different ways. Their role has been described as 'standing in the doorway of the church, keeping the door open both ways'. Rachel's calling, she told us, has been to work with children and their families.
Kindly Written by Astley Jones