In December 2021 I wrote a piece for Dear Friends and, because I feel it is so important, I’m writing a similar piece for 2023.
As we move into December, perhaps it’s a time to look over our year both at Reigate Park and as individuals, seeing what we’ve achieved, what we want to hold onto and what we want to let go of to make way for the new!
Here are just a few reminders of what we’ve achieved:
· Welcomed new people on to our Eldership
· Received people into Membership
· Started the new TLC group
· Working towards Children & Youth Friendly Church Award
· Working towards Silver level of the Eco Church Award
· Joining together as a Four Church Pastorate to call a new Minister.
When you look at it, that’s quite a list of achievements and I am sure that I’ve missed some things. Memories can be wonderful things and it can give you a great boost to look at everything that’s happened. There always seems to be something ahead of us, pulling us in a certain direction. But, and this may be easier said than done, it’s important to slow down and reflect, take some time out!
As I write this I think back to last year and the nerves of attending Assessment Conference for Ministerial Training. As you know, I was accepted and have just completed my second week of Ministerial Training at Westminster College, Cambridge, when our Learning Module was Introduction to Pastoral Care Part 1. I learnt a lot during the week, but one thing really struck a chord with me and has stayed with me – TAKE TIME OUT FOR YOURSELF – otherwise your bucket of stress overflows. And that applies to all of us, because we are no good to others or the tasks we are doing if we are worn out.
December: we may be feeling restless, knowing we’re being called to the next level and something is being birthed. We’re just not quite sure what yet. Maybe that’s something in January! Remember God’s time is always right and he will give us the strength to cope with whatever he has in store for us. We have exciting times ahead as we prepare for working together as a Four Church Pastorate and the calling of a new minister, so I invite you to take this last month of the year to review and reflect and see how far you’ve come, and prepare yourself for what lies ahead.
Take fifteen minutes to yourself; maybe light a candle and write down everything you’ve gone through and achieved. Those of us who take pictures on our phones could scroll through our pictures and jog our memories. I bet you’ve come a lot further than you thought!
May the light of Christ shine in your darkness this Christmas,
With every blessing to you all this Christmas and New Year.
Taken from the December 2023/January 2024 Edition of The Record