Church Weekend Away 2016
Rev. Anthony Delaney
For our talks on the St. Mary's Church Weekend Away we were blessed to have Rev. Anthony Delaney come and speak to us. As many have asked me what Anthony’s message was to the church, I have put together this very brief synopsis of what he said. He said much more than this but I hope this is helpful.
To find out more about Anthony or hear more from him you can visit his website: http://anthonydelaney.com/
Rev David McDougall
What was Rev Anthony Delaney's core message to St Mary’s Church?
Anthony wants us to examine the following flow of Christian living:
Solitude – Community – Ministry
He has seen that if our lives have this continuous pattern then life and ministry is both healthy and fruitful.
It has been his experience that too often churches and Christians have lived with the opposite flow:
Ministry – Community – Solitude
The danger is we can minister from a dry and exhausted place. If we are not in relationship with one another enough and have not spent recent personal time with God - then our ministry may not be as fruitful, joyful and healthy as God would long for.
Solitude: Intimacy with God the Father. Jesus modelled this for us when he would step aside from ministry to spend time with His Father. Receiving God’s love, assurance and affirmation. By living and being ‘in Christ’ we are secure and we are less likely to look to other people or other things.
Community: Living life together as Christian people. Loving people deeply. Loving Christian leaders and encouraging them. Finding the positive in people before sharing the negative.
Ministry: The bible speaks of the 5-fold ministries of the church: Prophecy, Pastor, Apostle, Teacher and Evangelist. We all have ministry in one or more of these areas and we need to be using these gifts.
Solitude – Knowing
Community – Growing
Ministry – Going
Anthony pointed out that too often churches are programme, building or financially orientated. These things are important but should not be our main focus.
Anthony used the analogy of church being either a Cruise Liner or a Life Boat!
He challenged us not to remain as passengers on board a Cruise Liner who enjoy the ride but complain bitterly about the food, the entertainments or the destinations!
He called us to man the life boats so that like Jesus we were a part of seeking and saving the lost.
Anthony helpfully explained that we would rescue more people by planting out new churches rather than just building up one big church. This is what he is doing in Manchester. This is very much a part of our vision here at St Mary’s Bletchley. In this way we can grow much bigger numerically, if we spread out rather than just keep gathering people where we are.
Anthony calls us to 'Step Out' and he believes that if we do this God will 'Step In'.
Step Out and God will Step In
If you would like to know more about the ministries or parts of Church life you can be involved in then please click here