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New Term Card & Sermon Series – He gave us stories
I don’t know if you’ve ever thought it odd that the Bible never lists what we need to believe as a Christian. That is to say, the doctrine of the Christian faith is not expressed as a series of propositions: “You must believe x, y, and z to be a Christian.” Rather the doctrine of the Christian faith is embedded in stories. We saw last term how all of us make sense of our selves and our identity in the framework of a wider narrative. For example, scientists are heroes who work selflessly for the betterment of humanity and so we should listen to their advice; compared with, scientists work for greedy pharmaceutical companies who will happily sell medicine people don’t need in order to make a profit so be wary of their advice. Which narrative do we find more believable? Very often it has nothing to do with the data but with which narrative we find more emotionally compelling or the one which we feel has the best explanatory power. And Jesus knew this.
Jesus knew that we are not really driven by facts and data but by stories and narratives. And so Jesus embedded truth in narrative. He gave us stories. This does not mean that what Jesus said can be dismissed because it is superficially fictional. Jesus’ stories are profound spiritual insights which reveal truth and reality. They do this all the more effectively because stories draw us in, stories help us to relate to characters, stories cause us to question whether we would have reacted in the same or a different way, stories subvert our expectations, and help us to change our minds.
We have produced this Mission Partners postcard featuring names and faces of all our Mission Partners along with a verse for 2022 reminding us of the spread of the gospel worldwide through our mission partners but also in our own lives.
We would encourage you to pick up one of these cards from our church buildings and use it as a visual cue at home to keep our Mission Partners in prayer throughout the year.
We are partnered with Dave Casson and Lucy Slavin at St. Peter’s Church in Rockferry; Jess Parkhouse working with Christians against Poverty in Wirral; Joshua and Miriam Mbithi working at Neema Children’s Home in Kenya, Sena and Jane Ounate-Lare working with BCMS Crosslinks in Caen, Normandy and Diego Pachecho working with BCMS Crosslinks in Santiago, Chile.
Keep watching this space for the latest news from our Mission Partners as we receive it and remember our dedicated Mission Partners webpage – https://www.barnston.info/mission-partners and please continue to thank God for his grace in using our partnership with these people to build his kingdom on earth.
We hope to have a visit fromJess Parkhouse to some of our Sunday services in this first quarter of the year.