from Rev Ken Fitzsimmons
"LEST WE FORGET"
We are approaching the one hundred year anniversary of the end of the First World War. On Sunday, across the nation, people will stand in two minutes silence to remember and pay respects to the millions who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. I recently felt drawn to look at the life of a man who is probably remembered more as an innocent victim than anything else just as we remember the fallen of the wars of the past. He was a man who stuck to his principles so strongly that it led to his murder. His name is Uriah the Hittite. 2 Samuel 11 begins with the words: “In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war…”
But King David did not go to war. He stayed at home while others fought his battles. He was not where he should have been. And so, one day, he saw a beautiful woman taking her monthly purification bath and temptation took him into adultery with Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah. It all happened while Uriah was fighting David’s war. When she became pregnant, he tried to cover it up by bringing Uriah back from the front to get him to sleep with her. When that failed, he had Uriah killed in the battlefield.
Uriah was one of David’s ‘Mighty Men’. He had been with him from the beginning through the time of Saul’s persecution. He was with him when they chased down the Amalekites who had kidnapped their wives and children. He was with him when David was crowned king. He was with him when they crawled through the sewer into Jerusalem to capture the city from the Jebusites. He was a man of righteousness whose name means ‘God is my light’. He was as loyal to David as you can get. But David threw Uriah’s life away to cover his own sin. David forgot.
But God did not forget. He has said: “Those who honour me, I will also honour” (1 Samuel 2 v30). And in the first chapter of the New Testament, in the genealogy of Jesus, while everyone else is named, Bathsheba is recorded only as “Uriah’s wife”, for that is who she will always be in the heart of God.
David forgot his calling and was not where he should have been. Uriah never forgot his calling and God remembered Uriah.
As we stand in remembrance on Sunday, let it not just be for Sunday, for I fear that there will be those who, on Monday, will forget and return to discarding the values for which so many died. Look at our values today, our society, our nation. What do you see? What would our wartime martyrs think of our society today? Will you remember?
SEASON OF CHANGE
On 24th October, we celebrated our sixth anniversary at Irwell Terrace. We have sensed the Holy Spirit telling us for some time that the seventh year would be different, a Sabbath year of resting in what God has already done in the first six years, a time of jubilee when the Lord pours out blessing. It has already begun! What is emerging is that he is leading us into new ways of praying and ministry. The members of the Core group have already heard and received God’s word so far on what we will be doing. We know there is more to come.
To accommodate the changes, we will, with immediate effect, be focusing on the Wednesday meetings. The Noon Open Prayer Meeting (12-1.30ish) will continue and the Tuesday evening meeting will, for now, cease. This will enable us to be more flexible in availability to pray and minister. Some of our prayer activity will be ‘going out’ and some will be at the request for prayer in particular locations. The hub at Irwell Terrace continues to be a place where we can meet with people by arrangement as well as on Wednesday lunchtime.
We wish to give thanks and praise to our Lord who is continuing to fulfil the vision of the Prayerhub he first began to unfold over 10 years ago. We have seen, throughout that time, his perfect timing in operation. It continues today and there is more to come!
Current information about our meetings and events may be found at www.prayerhub.org.uk. If you wish to contact us, that may be by email through the website, or by phone. Landline and mobile numbers are 01706 534382 and 075 999 85836. Since the office is only staffed part-time, you may not get an immediate reply on the landline and messages may not be picked up for several days. The mobile number usually gets you through to us more quickly. You can also contact us by email via the website at the ‘Contact us’ tab.
If you would like a leaflet about the Prayerhub, please contact us by phone, email or post. The address is 7-9 Irwell Terrace, Bacup, OL13 9AW.
Thank you for your prayers.
God bless you.
PRAYERHUB. Registered Charity No. 1169642
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