Questions, questions, questions

Alison and I (& Josh & Sam) returned from a good holiday last week. It was great to see people again on Sunday – particularly 2 week-old baby Eryk – congratulations to Adam & Paulina. Matt & Pip Hatch, from Mosaic (not-Vineyard) Church, were visiting and Matt shared a great message about hope in which he asked us a really good question, “In whom or in what do you hope?” What a great question. Got us thinking.

And then today, during the staff team meeting we were looking at Psalm 42:1,2 (each week someone sets a memory verse and this week Molly chose these). As we read them we realised that they end with a question, “When can I go and meet with God?” Got us thinking.

We like questions don’t we? (Do you like what I did there? … And there? etc). Get's us thinking - but not for too long please. We expect answers quickly and often we don’t get them. “Why did he have to die so young?” “Why did she betray me?” “How can I make a difference?” “Is there any future?”

If you read the stories about Jesus you will soon spot that He asks lots of questions. He asks questions of us, just as we ask questions of Him. Questions are good; they open up a space behind our words, behind our understanding. Those spaces may never get filled with neat answers but they do invite us into prayer – into a conversation with God - which can change us.

ITBGAnd this Sunday I am return to our series: In the Beginning, God. What does Genesis tell us about asking questions? We will look at the story of Sodom in Genesis 18 where Abraham’s prayer life takes the form of a strange conversation with God about questions of punishment and judgement. You can read it here.

Moving to less metaphysical questions, you may sometimes ask, “Why do we do things this way in the Vineyard?” Is this the right community of faith for me?” “When are we moving to Headingley”? If so, you may get some answers on the Discovering Vineyard Course. After the last course one participant said, "It's a must, it sets the scene and lets you know the basis behind how things are done". Another said, "An excellent way of learning about the bus, its route and deciding whether or not you want to get on!"

discover vineyardThe next course starts this Tuesday evening at the Vineyard Centre – we would love you to join us if you haven’t been on the course before, just turn up before 8.00pm (if you can sign up here or let us know that would help).

alphaBanner120x90-1You may have friends asking these questions too, and about - about life or God. If so, you can ask them a simple question, “Would you like to come with me to Alpha?” The next Course starts on 14 May. Look around, pray and see who God would like you to take with you.

wharfe baptismOne of our main purposes as a church is to help people make a decision to follow Jesus and get baptised. Our next baptism service is on 14 July so if you have decided to follow Jesus but never been baptised, this is your chance. Let me or one of the leaders know (if you are new to the Vineyard we will ask you to go on the Discovering Vineyard Course first).

Finally, you might enjoy one of the books I read on holiday: Cross Roads by Wm Paul Young (he wrote the Shack) – I don’t know what the Wm means. The book takes a while to get going so persist. It is funny and imaginative and helped me think about some of the “questions” and also to see how my choices affect my soul.



David Flowers, 16/04/2013
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