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Message from our Minister – Rev. Jonathan Humphrey
Over the past few weeks I have been taking assemblies at Kirkhill and Tomnacross Primary Schools and talking a bit about transitions – times of change where we move on from the familiar to something new. Sometimes this can be challenging.
In the Bible there are so many stories on the theme of transition – Abraham was called by God to leave his homeland to take up residence in a new country (Genesis 12) or the people of Israel freed from slavery in Egypt and spending 40 years in the desert until they were ready to go into the promised land of Canaan – or even the 3 days that Jesus spent in death before God brought him back to life.
Transitions are really about those awkward and uncertain times in our lives when we have left the old but not fully stepped into the new – whether that be dealing with moving on from school to training or university, a new job or grappling with a new baby. For P7s transition means preparing for moving on to High School and leaving behind the primary school years – a process that takes place over a number of months starting with visits to the high school, leaving ceremonies/proms, and social occasions mixing with others going to the new school.
After nearly 3 years of vacancy you may have been feeling that the people of K&K churches are at an end of a long period of transition… however, just as you think one transition is over though, another phase can begin! Remember how long it took the Israelites!
The main thing to remember during transition is the need to keep Jesus central to everything we do and to trust in Him, praying and remembering God’s promises –
“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen” (Jeremiah 29: 11-12).
We also need to face the reality that just like most Church of Scotland congregations, our church family will only grow in the way God intends if we are accessible and welcoming to all generations. God loves family, and as I mentioned a few Sundays back His will is for the “hearts of the Fathers to be turned to the children and the hearts of the children to be turned towards the Fathers” (Malachi 4: 5). There is work to be done in all aspects of church life to make this a reality – and it will take time. In our Sunday services, I believe that the development of multi-age worship using a variety of instruments and styles is both biblical and necessary for us to fulfill our calling to make disciples of all (Matthew 28). However, we also need to think about the provision of Sunday Club/school, youth work and how we reach young (and the not so young!) families in our communities who have yet to experience the realty of Jesus’ love in their lives and are not part of church.
God has begun to lead us in these things and I’m excited that we will have the opportunity for a joint Kirkhill & Kiltarlity Kirk Session Vision day on Sunday 27th September. This will be a chance for the elders to take further time to listen to God and each other and to begin to develop a shared vision for the work of the Kingdom in our parishes. I would encourage us all to be praying for this Vision day and joining in with the next phase that God has for us here.