On Saturday 27th October 2018, Tony Kirby will be giving a talk on the subject of “English hymns and hymn writers since the Reformation”. The talk will be held in Debden Parish Church, starting at 3.00 pm, and has been organised by the Debden History Recorders Group.
If the talk given by Tony earlier this year on the subject of “The impact of railways on Essex” is anything to go by, we will be entertained to a whistle stop tour of the subject, which will be both informative and enjoyable. Tony has indicated that there will be some audience participation on this occasion; so please be prepared to join in singing at least some of the hymns he will be discussing.
Although entrance will be free, there will be a Retiring Collection to assist in the maintenance of our Grade 1 Listed Church. Light refreshments will be available after the event.
The Annual Harvest Supper will be held in the Village Hall on Saturday 13th October from 6.00 pm.
Tickets are on sale in the Church and the Village Shop. Adults £10 and Children 12 and under are FREE!
Reliability and dependability are topical words these days. The sunshine has been pretty reliable in our part of the country this summer, (with one exception – Sunday, 29July, the day we planned a BBQ for a family gathering). Generally speaking, products are perhaps more reliable than they use to be. Cars for instance, with their computerised management systems seem much more reliable than my first cars as a young adult, quite a few years ago now!
Reliability and dependability when it comes to accessing services is perhaps much more questionable. I recently discovered this when trying to complete a purchase for tickets online. I carefully completed the pages of information requested, refining my choices and extras before submitting my payment details, only to be told the tickets I wanted were no longer available at the original price and I would have to reapply for the same tickets at a new higher price!
When I reflect on this, I realise other things are not always what I am told they are too. Diesel cars are not as good for the environment, even if they are more efficient than petrol engines and plastics I submit for recycling, are not always recycled but put in land fill sites. Wouldn’t it be good, to coin the phrase of a popular advert, if everything does exactly as it says ‘on the tin’.
As Christians, we are not exempt from trials and tribulations in everyday life and can feel as frustrated and annoyed as everyone else. But along with the Psalmist, we can say ‘God is our rock’ (Psalm 18 verse 2) and know him to be dependable and reliable. Exodus, the second book of the bible, is all about the people of Israel being led out of Egypt from slavery under the Pharoah. At points of the journey God helped them with water, food and victory in their battles. More than 40 years later, Moses the Israelite leader, looked back and said in his song of praise, recorded for us in Deuteronomy 32, verses 3&4, ‘Ascribe greatness to our God - the rock, his work is perfect and his ways are just.’ We are often let down by others and equally let others and ourselves down – not doing what we ought to or have promised to. But God is our rock, and in the end our trust in him is always secure, even when the world around us tests us in all sorts of ways.
Whether we have new starts in September or just a return to the same routines, we have, and always will have, the reliability and dependability of God with us, no matter what happens. The challenge is to turn to God, through Jesus his son, and to put all our hopes and fears on him. Are you ready and willing to trust in God, our rock? Here’s to the future, with God!
Revd John Saxon