This week my church is having a week of prayer. Personally I think that's a fantastic way to start the year - focused on God.
In fact, we did also start the year together cos we had a party/celebration/prayer meeting thing on New Years Eve, and welcomed in the year with worship and a time of prayer and thanksgiving.Anyway, last night we had the first prayer meeting of the week and spent time praying for our nation, and our city, and the outreach that our church has planned for this year. My church is charismatic, so our prayer meetings can get pretty loud and energetic, and I love it. I'm a practical person, and to me it makes sense that I get excited about something that means so much to me. I like the loud-ness and clapping and all that goes with it. I understand that it's not everyone's cup of tea, but it just makes sense to me. I love being a part of a church that is so multi-cultural, so charismatic, and so focused on God - worshipping in Spirit and in Truth.
I was reading earlier, or rather skimming vaguely, an article in the Times magazine from last Saturday with an article about Anne Frank. Since I was only skimming, I don't really know what the article was about, but a sentence caught my eye about some children in Northern Ireland, where for the very first time Catholic and Protestant children were working together on a joint project. On Sunday afternoon I met up with a friend from school, Maria, who is Catholic. Although we don't always agree on some faith related issues, I'm still glad that we know each other and are friends. Similarly, the girl I lived with the year after I finished university (referred to on this blog as 'I'), is a Presbyterian, and we didn't always agree on certain issues, but I still value her friendship and her opinion. I think it's good to have the opportunity to question why you believe something, and not just taking it in blind faith, and it's also good to have friends who don't always believe the exact same things as you, because I think it makes you a more rounded person.
I think I may be waffling now, so I'll try to round this up. I like my church, and the beliefs that I hold. I'm glad that I have a personal relationship with God, and over the next week or so I'm going to be sitting down and praying and thinking over my goals for the next year. I think it's going to be an exciting year, but that's all I'm saying about that for now! I'm looking forward to the exciting things that will be happening in my church, and I'll enjoy being friends with all sorts of people.
(I think I got a bit lost in the middle of this post and forgot what I was actually trying to say. Does it show?! Give me a break though, cos it's been a while since I wrote a proper blog post, so I'm trying to get back into the swing of it)