Let no one ever come to you
without leaving better and happier

(Mother Theresa)

What a challenge Mother Theresa gives us – as individuals
and what a challenge she gives us – as a church

Difficult I know, but just think! If this was the impact we had on just 10% of the people we met, how many more friends would we have? How much better would our community be? How much larger would we at Trinity be?!!

The crucial question is, are we focussed on our agenda and what we want or what we think is best? or are we focussed on the other person and what they think, on what they want, and on their happiness?

Isn’t this what loving our neighbour is all about?

In the pursuit of happiness half the world (often including ourselves) is on the wrong track. They think it consists in having and getting – getting!  Having and getting material possessions, getting what you want, getting what you want done, getting others to do things for you, getting others to do what you think they should do.

However, happiness is really found in giving and in serving others – both their happiness and profoundly also our own!

When we pray each day for our Lord to give us our daily bread, let’s pray that our daily bread may be God’s Spirit and God’s love and His empowerment of us – to truly love our neighbour. And who is our neighbour? Simply the people we meet in our daily life.

Our neighbour is both the people we plan to meet – later today or tomorrow or next week; and the people we just bump into in the car-park, in the shop, in the street.

Let’s pray that everyone who comes into contact with us should leave us better and happier for having met us, for having been with us.

Let’s not think about ourselves and what we’re trying to do, but about the other person. Let’s focus on helping them, on helping them succeed for it’s in their success that we ourselves succeed.

I appreciate that we ourselves have many difficulties and needs. And so, in the rush and noise of life, as we have intervals, let’s step home within ourselves and be still. Wait upon God and feel His good presence. Let’s ask for His grace and very appropriately at this time of Pentecost – let’s ask for His Spirit – Come! Holy Spirit, Come!

This will carry us through whatever the day may have in store for us.

And let us be about our Master’s business – showing in how we treat and relate to those we meet, Christ’s love and care for them – whoever they may be!

Let our objective be that for everyone who speaks to us, they may be glad to have done so. Let our sense of justice and what’s right (for us) – recognising that sometimes (frequently ?) this is just our pride! – be tempered with love and mercy.

And let’s:

Give-up complaining – focus on gratitude

Give-up pessimism – become an optimist

Give-up harsh judgements – think kindly thoughts

Give-up worry – trust Divine Providence

Give-up discouragement – be full of hope

Give-up bitterness – turn to forgiveness

Give-up hatred – return good for evil

Give-up being negative – be positive

Give-up anger – be more patient

Give-up pettiness – become mature

Give-up gloom – enjoy the beauty that is all around us

Give-up jealousy – pray for trust

Give-up gossiping – control our tongue

Give-up sin – turn to virtue

Give-up giving-up – hang in there!

And let’s:

Give-up focussing on ourselves – focus on the other person

And:

Let no one ever come to you, come to me
without leaving better and happier
glad that they’ve met us
wanting to again

Let this be our daily bread:

through knowing and loving God
for us to love our neighbour

And let us pray each day to Almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Ghost

Give us this day our daily bread
Amen
(Inspired and adapted from A Lenten Reflection in the magazine of Hope URC, Weymouth)

And what a vision this could be for Trinity

To be known as a place where everyone is loved and cared for

a place focussed on helping each one succeed however they define it

focussed on their/(our) interests not Trinity’s

as it’s in they/(our) achieving their/(our) interests, that Trinity see themselves succeed

Counter-cultural, difficult I know!

But isn’t that what we should be doing?

Isn’t this the Christian life ?

And as an incidental effect

If we really did this

(and none of us, including myself, has been anywhere near this!)

Trinity would have more than doubled in size by Christmas!

Why don’t we ?