We list here a number of ideas and resources you may find helpful to take One Step Forward with God. We will add more details as we have them.
* How can I know if I am a Christian?
This is the place to start. God has made you for a relationship with him, and this is a lot more meaningful than 'attending church', 'growing up in a Christian country' or 'suspecting God might be there.' Here are a couple of websites that could help you start to explore his invitation to life, hope, forgiveness and eternal love. But getting involved in any of the things listed in this page will help you to discover where you are with God.
* Come back to a church service (soon)
We are doing welcoming back everyone who is ready to come to a safe environment for adults and children, as well as livestreaming Sunday mornings. We know not everyone is yet ready to take the plunge, but is tehe some way you can meet with others every Sunday?
* Personal time with Jesus - Daily Devotions & Bible Reading.
Sanctification doesn’t generally happen in leaps and bounds. It’s a constant, daily and hourly process of God working in us, and one of the biggest ways he works is through his word. See Andy for some materials to support you in this.
Article - Help! I can't stay consistent with my bible reading
Article - Four things to remember when meeting with Jesus.
Article - You have more time for reading the Bible than you think.
App - Nicky Gumbel Bible in One Year - read or listen to the bible read and a daily reflection.
Blog & Resources - A selection of resources from Bible Society
Videos - Short animated summaries of all the books of the bible!
* Enjoying God's word with others (one to one)
We all know the value of sharing a meal with others. Reading the Bible is similar to eating food—we can do it alone, but we’re missing something if we never share it with others.
* Join a Housegroup
House groups gather around God's word, but are about far more than bible study, they are an opportunity to process faith and life together with others who care about you. Please see our housegroup list and get in touch with Mary or one of the leaders if you'd like to come along for a taster. Most of them are currently meeting in Zoom.
* Try taking notes during the Talk - Journal with God
We live in a noisy world. By week's end when we arrive at church and settle into the pew for a sermon, we try to silence the noise and prepare ourselves to hear something altogether different—God's living, active Word. Good biblical teaching is more than just inspiring. It has the power to change hearts! With that in mind, taking notes on the message is a great way to stay engaged, leaving reminders for reflection later in the week to revisit the message and discuss with others.
Article - 8 tips for making good sermon notes
* Come and Pray
Weekly – An informal time of prayer in Zoom1 on Sunday evenings at 6pm every week. See the newssheet.
Monthly – First Wednesdays 7.30-8.30pm in Zoom1. 75 minutes starting with Scripture, hearing from different homegroups, areas of church life, and individuals, to pray for our church family, our church activities, and our partners in mission around the world.
For Mission - Usually a monthly prayer meeting praying for our mission partners, now temporarily by email only. See Morris for details. Recent info sheet here when available.
* Be inspired to share your faith - Explore Evangelism
Andy will be hosting a group exploring the ideas in the book 'Natural Evangelism' by J.John. One session a month for anyone who knows in their heart that Jesus is good news for people but feels awkward or unsure where to start, or who would value others to keep them motivated to live for Jesus openly in the world. More information coming soon.
* Church ConnectThe pandemic has resulted in feelings of isolation and loneliness in people of all ages. People who attend church are not immune to this especially during lockdown as the church buildings are now closed. In the Bible it tells us to.... "Love one another as I have loved you." (John 13 v 34).
Church needs to be a family that cares for one another and has connections and conversations throughout the week. Church Connect is about encouraging people in the church to speak and support each other with phone calls at least once a week, to show that they care, to share needs, hopes, fears and faith. Some people will already have these relationships but for those who feel called to get to know someone new in the church please use this as a reason to take this “one step forward” and make a connection.
1 - swap a phone number with and start connecting
2 - or contact a church warden to find someone new to connect with.
Let’s develop connections and ensure that in our parish we care for others and each other. Let’s serve Jesus and the World but not forget about serving each other and developing our church family. Jo, Sarah, Russell and Sue.
* Use your Gifts
Could you contribute towards our aim of serving Jesus, each other, and our world? Every talent that God has given can be used in his service. How could you use yours creatively for Jesus? St Mark's are preparing a volunteer list which you will be able to see here.
* Use your Money
Our mission is to serve Jesus, each other, and our world by sharing the live-changing good news of Jesus. You can make a tremendous difference through your financial generosity. Please see the section in our website for more details.