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One week in the life of a local Norwich church

rollercoasterNorwich church leader Ian Savory has had a week both to remember and to forget from the highs of Wembley Stadium to the lows of a church break-in.

 
How marvellously grace filled, intriguing and majestic is His majesty, and just a plain kick in the teeth is life with the local church.   
 
Bill Hybels is so right when he says the local church (Gods people) are the hope of the world and I believe it.  But sometimes in the midst of crap and kingdom you just have to hold on to ‘Jesus loves me this I know, for the bible tells me so, little ones (church) to Him belong they are weak but He is strong.’  
 
What a week it has been.  

Starting with the thrill of the National Day of Prayer and Worship at Wembley Stadium on Saturday 29th September.  Seeing the church lost in wonder, love and praise.  And our young people and older ones getting a fresh view of how awesome is the God we know, that we are His church, His body in the nation that can’t be pushed aside, because we are the ones that so often make community work, and kiss our society with the hot cleansing kiss of God’s kindness.
 
Sunday.   Baptism.   
Four people declaring their obedience to Christ.   Wow!   How awesome a sign.   God first, me second… saying I will live God’s way not mine.   Stories of God’s grace so amazingly worked out in our individual lives.
 
What a day – Wednesday 
News came through that early that morning the church office has been robbed.   The huge old safe taken, they must have been creative to get it out of that space.   Sounds like it was someone who knew us, as they went to places money was stored.  
 
In the middle of this, the painful news comes through of someone in our community we like and are growing to love who is losing a child, pain of all pains.   What words are not too cheap in a situation like this?   
 
This is the horrible side of life, but again God’s people are there doing church, not often feeling empowered or aware of the miracles that flow from their lives in a cracked, confused culture.
 
In the middle of the break in, the church and community does ‘its thing’.  Signs of help and kindness arrive, showing that Big Society is alive and well.  And while you’re waiting for Scenes of Crime Officers to arrive the presence of Jesus and a freshly baked cake go a long way.
 
On the way home someone who has not spoken to me for at least 8 years, due to the noise from one of our youth activities at church, stops me on the street and asks if they can volunteer in one of our projects.   My jaw drops.   How did that happen and this week’s not over yet.
 
What a marvellous God we serve
I love his idea of church.
I love we’ve been set free by Christ to care in the chaos and pain of our culture.
I love that the demands of the law are met in Christ because He is the Saviour of the World and I believe in Him and in the words of John Bunyan.
“Run, John, run the law demands
But gives me neither feet nor hands.
Better news the gospel brings
It bids me fly and gives me wings.”
 
Happy flying.
 

javascript:linkToImage(536225)Ian Savory is the Senior Pastor of Oak Grove Chapel based in the Catton Grove area of Norwich. 

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