My wife and I were both brought up within Christian families and committed our lives to Christ in late childhood / early adulthood. We met on a holiday for young adult Christians in Wales in the late 1980s and married two years later. Work brought us to the Bexley area in the mid-1990s. In mid-2000 we felt led to move on from the church we had been attending. The Vicar who had conducted our wedding suggested we try St James (where he had done a curacy in the early 1980s). We found a very friendly welcome there, and felt that this was where God wanted us to settle.
We have enjoyed the fellowship of many people over more than a decade, and feel we have made some good friends. I joined the Parochial Church Council and served as PCC Secretary for two years over the period of the building project, and then for six years as PCC Treasurer (having been treasurer at a previous church a decade earlier). Many tasks like these involve a lot of work and are done quietly behind the scenes by faithful people, often largely unnoticed by many people (although the church usually tries to make public recognition from time to time of their efforts, particularly when they stand down), but without them the church would be unable to function as it does.
We have been well supported in prayer by caring people at St James during my traumatic career change some years ago. I wrote in the parish magazine about taking a day to go for a long prayer walk in the country before coming to a final decision over this. More recently over my mother’s rather sudden and swift final illness. Recently we met with a number of friends from the church to pray over some difficulties a family member was giving us knowing that the details would be kept in confidence.
Belonging to a church family is an important part of a Christian’s walk with God. It is important to seek God’s guidance on all decisions, particularly major ones such as marriage or employment, but also to commit to God our plans and the things we do and say to others on a day-to-day basis. In this way we can literally ‘walk with God’. I have found fellowship with other believers at St James to be an encouragement in my personal walk with God. The church is something of a family, and people try to help each other as best we can.