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Viewpoint from Rev Steve Bradford for 5th September 2014 

Rev Steve Bradford
Vicar for St Andrew's Church, Gorleston


We live in a world that is constantly changing. Just as we get used to something a new and improved model appears. I find this most frustrating with computer software. It seems most of us just don’t like change – at least at first. Yet we ourselves are changing all the time.
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How have you changed in the last twelve months? Well we are all a year older to start with. Some of us will have seen significant changes, for others it will perhaps be less noticeable but we have all changed or been changed by our experiences during this time.
 
Perhaps a more important question though is how have we changed as a follower of Jesus in the last twelve months? For example are we more Christlike? Have we grown in the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23): are we more loving; more joyful; more patient; more kind; more good; more faithful; more gentle and more self-controlled?
 
Perhaps the summer is a good time to reflect on this and think about what we should do differently in the next twelve months to show our love for our Heavenly Father and our neighbours.
 
I encourage us all to carry out a prayerful review of our own discipleship and I offer the following questions which may help
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  1. How has our prayer life developed? Are we spending more time listening to God and discovering new ways to pray? Are we more disciplined in our daily Bible reading? Have we increased the time we spend studying our Bibles and applying what we learn to our lives?

  2. Have we found our way of using the gifts God has given us to serve our church and our community?

  3. Have we told others about the God we love and who loves us?

  4. Are we worshipping God regularly with our Christian brothers and sisters?


If you need help in exploring this I am sure your own church leader would be more than happy to help you or point you in the direction of someone else who can.
 
My prayer for each one of us is that we become fruitful disciples of Jesus, equipped by the Holy Spirit for the task that our Heavenly Father has called us to. Remember we are the body of Christ – his hands and his feet in the world.