Sunday Worship – 3rd July 2022 – A Methodist Way of Life

This month’s commitment: We tell of the love of God

Welcome to our Methodist Way of life service for July, led by Rhona North, one of our Circuit Local Preachers.

Welcome: Take a chair, maybe a deckchair in the sunshine and prepare for worship. Gaze up into heaven and see the God that loves you beyond measure, see  God your perfect Father, with Jesus your Saviour. Hear the worship in heaven, “Jesus is worthy to receive glory honour and praise!” We welcome You Holy Spirit! Help each one of us to praise our God.

Click on the blue links to follow them for Bible readings and associated links

Hymn – Singing the Faith 102 – For the beauty of the earth

Prayers and Lord’s Prayer:
Dear Father God, we praise you for Your complicated and amazing creation: for the season of summer, the warmth of the sun, the scent of roses and fledglings beating their wings across the skies. We thank you for Your creation of us, imperfect in our humanity yet adored by You. But most of all Father we thank you for Your Son Jesus, who left the companionship of heaven, came to earth to show us true love, who taught His disciples how to spread the good news of how Jesus forgives our sins through His blood being poured out from His cross. We can never thank You enough for the enormity of that sacrifice so that we come in our frailty and sin and say sorry for the things we have done that have not shown Your love, the things we’ve put in place instead of your love and for the times when we haven’t reached out your love to others.


We see Your hand Jesus taking our sins away, we feel your blood cancelling them out and feel the freshness of Your Spirit taking away all the sluggishness, silt and mud in our lives and refreshing us, restoring us and as we gaze up again we see a place in heaven prepared for us. What an amazing God you are! Let us declare God’s love in saying together the Lord’s Prayer.

Hymn – How deep the Father’s love for us

Debra Stocks from St Andrew’s shares that she was overwhelmed by God’s love when she was very young and testified that He has never stopped loving her and God’s love is like no other, it is constant and never fails

Reading 1: Matthew 25 v 31-46

Do you know anyone who cares for people in any of these ways? I visited Dawn Coleman of the Shipley Uniform Bank. She is a Christian and goes to the Salvation Army. When she was a teenager at Sunday School she was inspired by two elderly ladies who collected clothes and uniforms, washed and mended them and she helped them throughout the school holidays. They gave them out to all those in need. Dawn started at her kids’ school collecting, washing and mending uniforms and giving them out to people who can’t afford it. She was also inspired by a lady telling her it’s not enough to speak about Jesus we need to act too! It has mushroomed and she now covers 30 primary schools and 8 secondaries!!! She has a team of volunteers who collect donations, wash mend and box it up in a large room in the Salvation Army. She receives referrals from teachers and also advertises on social media. When I asked her why she did all this voluntarily she said she wanted people to know God’s love when they couldn’t afford school uniform. They can’t give out second hand shoes nor underwear so they always need donations of money for that. What an inspiring lady!

Who were you inspired by to speak of God’s love through actions? What do you do that is / has inspired others? Like the Miracle of feeding of the 5000 our little, small bits of help all add up to very big things!!

Hymn – A Touching Place

Schools tell me that the two things families are asking more and more for help with is uniforms and food. Stuart and Heather Ayrton as Christ’s hands, run the Foodbank in Bolton. I visited the Shipley Foodbank to interview Peter Criddle who is a member of St Peter’s C of E Church: he and Martin Butterworth have gathered a team together of volunteers from many churches. He trained as an accountant and asked God how he could use his training to help spread the gospel and two weeks later he saw the advert for finance volunteer in the Shipley Foodbank supported by the Trussel Trust. They are open Monday and Thursday afternoons in Shipley Baptist and give out some fifty vouchers weekly, mostly to single people. Vouchers can be had from doctors etc. it is mostly emergency food for those who haven’t received any benefit yet or those who have lost their jobs. He also has a table of goods where people can help themselves, Wakas Ali from the ‘Equality Together’ Charity signposts and gives advice on benefits, disability support,  housing and much more. The Foodbank has five centres including Bolton and Shipley in North Bradford and Peter encourages donations from supermarkets who all give generously. The Foodbank gave out some 250 Christmas hampers and people can pop in for encouragement and support with a warm welcome from the teams. Euan Woodward from Christchurch LEP does a sterling job in sharing about the work and there is a signposting stall on Shipley Market on Monday mornings.

Prayer: Take a moment to thank God for Dawn, Stuart and Heather, Peter  Wakas, Euan and all their teams

Reading 2: Psalm 78 v 1-4 (it’s worth reading the whole psalm!) We have heard in the past how good God is and we will tell the next generation.

Talk: David in Psalm 78 reminds us that we need to tell about God’s love. We can do that by sharing our own testimony’s of what He is doing for us, sharing our stories with others eg ‘ Ooo the service was great on Sunday afternoon, we were told the story of Psalm 23 in sand.’ People can’t disagree with us when we casually tell of how much we’ve enjoyed God that week. We can tell the children by saying grace, watch a story about the Bible on tv, teach them a song, give them bibles, cards etc. We can especially remember anniversaries of their baptisms, take them to church and fun days around churches or Christian events. As schools teach less about Jesus grandparents can do more.

Lesley Hainsworth, Saltaire Methodist, reminds us how lovely it is to teach in Sunday School. We can easily share what we’ve been doing in a really positive way. When we are out for walks, as Pete Greig suggests (Prayer 24/7) we can declare, ‘Good job on those sheep / roses / trees / the sunset / birds etc God! Another really good thing with strangers or acquaintances is to regularly practise giving our testimony / journey with God and do it in 2 minutes! All these things help sow seeds of desire for God in other hearts.

Reflection and Prayers:

How can we tell God’s story in actions

Is God telling you to add something in or put something down?

Pause to listen to the Spirit:

What action can you do to show God’s love?

Give some food / baking / invite to a neighbour / help with some DIY or craft / give a regular small amount so that the least can be helped ( a £1 from many goes a long way) give up time to volunteer at a charity / invite someone on a walk / invite to a church festival / event  and many many more ways! Be an encourager, sell God to others be being positive and not moaning about church or being hypocritical!

But what if you are struggling? Maybe this is the season for you to be given help, support or some financial help. Don’t stay silent, speak out that you are in need. Contact someone in church or a charity. God wants to bless you with His love, show that He cares about you.

PRAY for those that help the people who are neglected or broken. Jesus is our role model of how to serve and speak about God. He will give His Spirit to help us to do and speak for Him!

Stop and pray for: 1. Countries at war / famine 2. Our Queen, government and nation 3. For West Yorkshire For Kerry as Chair, Phil as Super, they whole leadership team, our churches, charities in the area  4. People we know who are struggling 5. Ourselves how and when we can speak of God’s love

Hymn – Singing the Faith 272 – The Servant King

May, Father Son and Holy Spirit, who love you so deeply bless you and all those that you love, now and for evermore. Amen

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