3rd February 2019

Welcome to St Jude’s on our Vision Sunday.  I have been looking forward to this day when our Sunday School and choir return from holidays, our new look evening service starts up, and we get excited about the year’s ministry.

Excitement!  Excitement is something that we often experience.  In our highly sensory age, we’re constantly riding the wave from high excitement to the biochemical dip that follows, and so on and on.  I want more than that sort of excitement for us at St Jude’s.  Paul writes to the Romans, “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervour, serving the Lord” (Rom. 12:11).

“Zeal” has a bad name in some circles, and it has even been quipped that a “fervent Anglican” is a contradiction in terms, but all these words really mean is a serious, sustained, energetic commitment to furthering a cause.  Anyone who is convinced of a cause that really matters will be zealous for it.

Humans get uncomfortable in the presence of zeal that they do not share.  But this does not make zeal a bad thing.  Some discomfort might be helpful if it confronts us with a cause that really matters.

The glory of God really matters.  More than anything else in the world, it matters that all the creatures of our God and King should give him the worship he is due.  My prayer today is not just for excitement but zeal for God’s holy name.