Musings From The Methodist Manse
Thoughts for May
May 13th is the beginning of Christian Aid Week. When the churches remember the work of the Christian Aid organisation and learn more about parts of the world where they are working. It is an opportunity to rejoice that small amounts of faith, prayer and money offered by individuals combine to make a difference to some of the poorest and most vulnerable in the world.
It is all too easy to fall into cynicism: to declare that faith is the cause of the world's problems; or to say that prayer is a naive response to the pain of the world; or to feel helpless to change things when the need is so great.
But we are still in the season of Easter, when Jesus - one human being - showed how love could change the lives of individuals and nations - in his own time and since.
It only takes a small seed to grow a tree.
It only takes a small flame to begin a fire.
Two people began to pray for a way to alleviate the debt of the developing world. Out of that prayer, Jubilee 2000 began. The seed began to grow. Organisations like Christian Aid added their voice. Governments were challenged to act. They could not ignore the one-plus-one, which became a crowd pressing for change. Because of changes in Government policies, Uganda has £440 million to spend on education, health, roads and water - instead of debt repayments. It is just one example of how God answers prayer by prompting the pray-er to act.
So I offer you the Christian Aid prayer with a warning.
Jesus said, "Ask and you will receive. Seek and you will find. Knock and the door will be opened."
Be careful what you pray. God will answer!
We stand before you, Lord, with hands wide open, ready to receive you.
We bring before you, Lord, our modest gifts, like tiny seeds, not knowing what fruits you may bring out of them.
We wait before you, Lord, asking that our hands and gifts offered in your service, will make a difference to the world
beyond our imaginings.
In the name of Jesus, who once was weak and now is exalted. Amen.
Revd Jackie Goddard