The United Reformed Church Chesham

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April/May 2019 Newsletter

Dear friends,

Alleluia! Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia!

At Easter time, we remember Jesus’ suffering, his death on the cross paving the way for each and every one of us to know and enjoy God’s love. Here in the northern hemisphere, we celebrate Easter in springtime, a season of new and renewing life, helping us to empathise the new and renewing life that God gives us.

Celebrations are nearly always better if we have had time to prepare and anticipate them. Lent gives us that time – have you ‘given up’ or ‘taken up’ anything to help you prepare? We can travel through Jesus’ suffering with him as we follow the story in our bibles, either at home, or collectively in church. Through the triumphant entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday and the Passover supper that Jesus ate with the disciples in the upper room on Maundy Thursday. We join with the other churches in the town on Good Friday to try and comprehend the great sacrifice of Christ dying on the Cross. When we know what happened next, it is difficult for us to grasp the extent of Christ’s suffering and the anguish the disciples experienced. They must have felt themselves going down in a dark spiral of despair; they had forgotten Jesus’ words predicting his death and they couldn’t imagine any future without him.

Perhaps there have been occasions in our lives when we too have felt like this. How can you go on when, all around the darkness seems to be closing in and more disasters happening? In today’s world there is still so much suffering. On a large scale there are famines, wars, natural disasters, global warming and particularly at this time for this country, the anguish over ‘Brexit’. Closer to home for individuals, there is family illness, friendship issues or other problems. Jesus suffered. God suffered and so in all our suffering there is someone who understands. But we know there is an end to the dark spiral. On Easter Sunday Jesus walked in the garden. Mary recognised his voice and sobbed with relief and joy. A light sprang up from the centre of the spiral; a light that would not be extinguished. Hope for the future shone. Jesus is alive and he is there for us all. The resurrection brings the assurance that the darkness will end and that with God there is peace and new life.

Wishing you a blessed Easter.
With love,