12th July 2021
“When you pray, I will listen.
If you look for me wholeheartedly,
you will find me.” (Jer. Ch.29 v 12, 13)
Writing to you in this month of July, I greet you and wish you well in Jesus name. As you read, let me remind you of what you and I believe – the Lord is our shepherd, who cares for us and He is our physician, the healer, who binds up our emotional and spiritual wounds and soothes us with comfort. I hope you can reflect on this and agree, “Yes indeed. Jesus be praised.”
I came across this short story recently. Here it is. Worth a reading.
US President Franklin D. Roosevelt often endured long receiving lines at the White House. As the story is told, he complained that no one paid attention to what was said. So, he decided to experiment at a reception. To everyone who passed down the line and shook his hand, he said, “I murdered my grandmother this morning.” The guests responded with phrases like, “Marvellous! Keep up the good work. God bless you, Sir.” It wasn’t until the end of the line, greeting the ambassador from Bolivia, that his words were actually heard. Nonplussed, the ambassador whispered, “I’m sure she had it coming.”
Do you ever wonder if people are really listening? Or worse, do you fear that God isn’t listening? But how do we know if God is listening? Should we rely on feelings? Or see if God answers our prayers? We don’t need to rely on feelings or wait for a sign to know that God listens to us. He’s promised to listen, and He always keeps His promises. (2 Corinthians 1:20)
I encourage you to trust completely your holy God. He is listening to you when you pray. I am certain He will listen to your prayer now. A prayer for the very present.
“Dear God, thank you for hearing my prayers. Help me to trust your promise that you listen to me. Amen.”
OUR EVENTFUL YEAR
Since March 2020 to the present date we have all experienced the most difficult of years during which we have mourned the loss of five members of our church family. These sadnesses came during a time which deprived families and friends of the opportunity to give important bereavement support to grieving mourners in any of the normal actions of help so valued at such a time. We shall be arranging a special Memorial Service to honour the memory of all these friends, possibly on Sunday 3rd October, but details will be given in the next newsletter by which time we should have resumed the precious congregational fellowship we all love.
Throughout these dismal past months we have been sustained by sincerely welcomed pastoral letters and web-site Services reassuringly giving us spiritual support. For some friends without web-site access Jessie recorded very many of these uplifting services on CDs and posted them safely to bring comfort. Our Minister Alan has been unceasing in helping us to receive as much spiritual uplift as possible during our prolonged restrictive lockdowns and we now pray for such intrusions to our way of life to become a distant memory.
On Easter Sunday 6th April it was with great delight our church re-opened and a congregation of 33 friends and two special little people joined to worship together. Although we are still masked and socially distancing there was a palpably happy atmosphere to celebrate this special time of year in the Christian calendar. Our organist Prof. Norman Beedie has consistently enhanced the meaning of our Sundays with his beautiful rendering of lovely organ music. It can be said that we are allowed to keep our ears open but our mouths shut so the day we can all sing again will bring smiles all round. How much we look forward to the joyful task of removing all the signs and barriers which have had to be observed for these many months.
On a lighter side some of the ladies have been enjoying a weekly afternoon tea together by courtesy of the modern Zoom medium. There has also been a similar gentlemen`s get together organised by Alan. These are most enjoyable as we are all in our own homes, without masks of course, and can share many aspects of our lives which we cannot do on Sundays until we are safely permitted to join together in our church for welcome tea and coffee. Never did we imagine such restrictions would interfere with our usual important socialising on Sundays both inside and outside the church.
In spite of the national lockdowns the organisation and care of everything to do with our church has had to continue unabated behind the scenes. This means that enormous gratitude and appreciation is due to our office-bearers and friends who have continued faithfully to keep an eye on the fabric of our church building and to ensure every member of our congregation has been kept up to date on Scottish Government advice and congregational news. The financial and secretarial work necessary at all times for the daily running of our church has been enormous and both Dumiso and Jessie have superbly master-minded every aspect for our benefit. We have also managed to have important church meetings by Zoom, and the fact we have successfully presented our comprehensive up-dated Church Constitution to OSCR (The Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator) and had it accepted and approved was no mean task. We all look forward with hope in our hearts for a summer period of togetherness at every level of our lives. We `lost` Easter, Summer and most of Christmas in 2020 so the second half of 2021 can only be more rewarding for all of us.
A MESSAGE FROM OUR VERY IMPORTANT ORGANIST
Thank you to Dundee Congregational Church Pipe Organ Renovation Donors
I am sure everyone will want to join me in thanking the various donors from 2019 until now who have so generously supported the renovation to date.
A total of £8,285.00 was raised and this provided almost 50% of the initial renovation, the balance being given by the Church under the authority of the Kirk Session. The Renovation Fund is an ongoing entity and I wish to put my energy into raising funds for the next stage. The music I play is all improvised and is heard once and is never played again. The instrument is an excellent example of the work of J.R. Miller, the Dundee organ builder and is one of the few three manual (keyboard) instruments from this builder still functioning. I believe that many pipes are from the original Wm. Holt organ of 1864/65 which was erected in the east gallery before being moved to the new apse in 1880. It therefore contains much which is part of the musical heritage of the church and as such gives me great pleasure in presenting my Musical Ministry to the Congregation.
Found Missing Open Secret
Small Crowd Act Naturally
Fully Empty Pretty Ugly
Original Copy Only Choice
and the best of them all: Social Distancing
A VIEW ON THE SERVICE OF CHRISTIANS
If you are not involved in any service or ministry what excuse have you been using? Abraham was old, Jacob was insecure, Leah was unattractive, Joseph was abused, Moses stuttered, Gideon was poor, Samson was co-dependent, Rahab was immoral, David had an affair and all kinds of family problems, Elijah was suicidal, Jeremiah was depressed, Jonah was reluctant, Naomi was a widow, John the Baptist was eccentric to say the least, Peter was impulsive and hot-tempered, Martha worried a lot, the Samaritan woman had several failed marriages, Zacchaeus was unpopular, Thomas had doubts, Paul had poor health and Timothy was timid. That`s quite a variety of misfits, but God used each of them in his service. He will use you, too, if your stop making excuses.