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Friday, 18 May 2012


I went into the Christian Aid sale this morning and bought another plant for the garden (a hosta, which looks very attractive at the moment...) and a bag of books. I don’t need any more books. I don’t have time to read them; I don’t have shelf space to store them; and I don’t ever seem to get rid of any! 

However, they looked interesting, or helpful, or enlightening, and the salesmen were persuasive, and the price was right. 

Then I went up and had a coffee and a scone. I paid twice the usual church coffees price, because it was for Christian Aid. I sat with a lovely lady I rarely have time to speak with, and we had such an interesting conversation. It was a blessing to me.

I am writing all this because I’m thinking about buildings. Our church is embarking on a New Level building project, not for the sake of having comfy seats or cosy rooms for us all to lounge around in, but in order to better meet the perceived needs of the community. We are about to launch into a building project with bricks and mortar, in order to better build ‘church’ between those of us who attend church, and the community. We don’t envisage an evangelical Bible-bashing campaign, but rather we plan to create space in which to serve our neighbours.

This annual Christian Aid sale is part of church building. It is undertaken by members of several of the churches in the town, which helps to build relationships between denominations. And it is supported by all sorts of folks, church-goers and atheists, who are looking for a bargain and maybe get more than they bargain for as they catch a glimpse of what church is all about. And further afield, it raises money to help Christians in places where life itself is a struggle. International relationships. Global church.

‘I will build my church,’ Jesus said. And nothing will overcome it.

I’ve had a lovely morning. I feel encouraged that Jesus is being lifted up in our community, and there isn’t a Bible-basher in sight.

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