This is part of my testimony that I shared in Church at our Sharing Service. I hope that you are blessed. Catherine Drabble
I was sat inside a cage; a prison cell measuring about ten feet by five. There were bars all around me and a barred door on one side so I could clearly see out into a bright, light world outside. The ground outside my prison cell was covered in golden yellow sand, and I realised that I was in a desert with nothing but sand dunes for as far as my eyes could see.
I was sat hunched up on a little stool and surrounding me were bags and bags of dirty overflowing smelly rubbish. I could see steam rising from them, filling the air with a terrible stench. It was the odour of hurt, un-forgiveness, and guilt and everything else that eats down to the very core of us if allowed to grow. It was the aroma of sin, my sin and the sin of those people that I hadn't been able to forgive.
The strange thing was I seemed to be quite content for a while, sat there amongst all the trash. I was used to my life the way it was. It was comfortable and in a peculiar way it had become my security blanket. I felt safe in my cell; the scary bit was outside in the big wide world.
Then I looked up and saw Jesus appear on the outside of my prison bars and the realisation hit me that although I was comfortable here, it wasn't where Jesus was.
Jesus stood outside my prison door, looking at me. Then He pulled back the big heavy bolt that was keeping me locked in. There was no key, just a bolt that I could have easily drawn back myself but I had chosen not to. He then stood back and waited. I remained seated, thinking He'll rescue me!
But Jesus just stood there looking at me and waiting. Then it dawned on me that He had already rescued me. He had died on a cross and given everything so that I could be free. Yet, I was still trapped inside this prison because I hadn't fully grasped that freedom was there for the taking. He had given me a fantastic gift and I had accepted it, but I hadn't unwrapped it. It was now up to me to remove myself from the situation I was in. I needed to be pro-active in accepting my freedom.
So I stood up and taking one last look around I walked up to the door and pushed it open. It opened easily. I walked outside towards Jesus. Then we both looked in through the bars of my cell in the desert, full of dirty old rubbish, the rubbish I was now turning my back on. I turned and walked away, with Jesus walking at my side. We walked up a steep dune with the grains of sand slipping beneath my feet, threatening to make me slip and slide back down, but with Jesus there at my side I stayed upright and strong and continued walking forward.
As I looked ahead to the horizon the light began to change and I was filled with expectancy, not knowing what was on the other side of the hill but knowing that because I was walking with Jesus, it was going to be wonderful and beautiful. The promise was there.
After a while we stopped and looked back down the hill together. My prison cell could still be seen in the distance. It hadn't disappeared but because I had walked so far with Jesus, my cell and all of its contents had become insignificant in the landscape. Jesus wasn't going to make me forget, He wasn't going to allow my memories to be erased. It was up to me to walk away from my past and its memories. I realised that it is not how we fall, that God is concerned with, it's how we get up that matters to Him.
I am a new person, my past is forgiven and everything is new.
Following our successful bid to gain funding for a post-Covid journey to recovery programme, we are pleased to announce that all of the programmes that we originally intended to deliver are now being delivered in Church. We had to do sone of the courses on Zoom and facebook during the lockdown and while they have been successful, we are so pleased that we can now offer these programmes in person and in Church. The funding from Allchurches Trust means we can deliver English as an Additional Language courses free of charge, healthy living courses combining exercise, healthy eating, and help with debt management, as well as basic computer literacy aimed at people who have been isolated due to having no access to technology to help them stay in touch with others.
This comes on top of the funding sucessfully gained from All churches Trust, for the development of our upper rooms in the church to create a prayer room, better storage facilities and an arts and crafts room that CRE8 are using. This has involved putting in a new staircase to allow better and easier access, a partition wall in the storage room, as well as painting and decorating the area. This has been hampered somewhat in the development by the Pandemic, but is now complete and is ready to to be used.
Praise God for all that He is doing.
It was our very great privilege to attend the launch of Toks (Olaronke Ashiru Gbadebo's) book "Don't Take the Poison", on Saturday 19th September.
We are promoting her book on our website to support her in this work and so the following is a description of the book and there are two links for you to purchase it, through Amazon and Google.
*Don't Take that Poison* is a call for anyone who desires to live a life that pleases God, and who is committed to enjoying the abundant life available in Christ.
The book looks deeply into the issue of offences and how it impacts our lives and our ability to be fruitful.
It provides deep insights into the purpose of relationships and different ways offences can wreak havoc.
You will get answers to questions like:
a) What causes offences:
b) The signs of an offended heart:
c) Effects of harbouring offences:
d) The path of victory
It provides compelling answers to deep heart issues especially those that have been wounded through lifes circumstances and are struggling to let go of the wounds incurred.
The book will help to escape the poison offences brings into our lives.
Our Mission House next door to the Church is available for bookings to stay for 1 to 30 nights. The house is used as a Christian retreat, and we can offer a wide range of support programmes during your stay with us.
From Bible Teaching - various topics - to Worship Leading prayer and a range of other activities.
We are based on the wonderful panoramic Northumberland coastline which is literally 5 minutes drive away, but also have access to the beautiful Northumbrian Countryside and Cheviot hills which are only 30 minutes drive.
Pleas see our Mission House Christian Retreat Section on this website, or visit our Mission House Retreat page on facebook.
Jesus Christ is the same today, yesterday and forever
This is not just breaking news, it is the news from yesterday, today and tomorrow and guess what? It is forever. Hallelujah!!!!!
Contact us at:
Word of Life Church
Wesleyan Reform Union
North Seaton Road, Ashington Northumberland NE63 0AG
Or use our online contact form.