We were able to visit a church here in London yesterday. It's called Holy Trinity Brompton. We enjoyed the services. It's an Anglican church, but the worship was quite similar to what we're used to back home. I'd had a very hard day the day before, (We got lost on public transport at night! I'll write more about that experience in my next post.) so worship service and time with the Body of Christ was indeed just what I needed.
As I lay tossing and turning the night before, I kept worrying about church the next morning. Would we find it? Would we like it? What would it be like? And since worship singing is usually my favorite part of the service, would we know the songs? We knew all but one of the songs! Both my husband and I were teary through that part of the service. For the first time, we felt so at home in this strange place. Songs we knew. A God we all loved. Worship. Home.
The pastor preached on Phillipians 4:4-9, which due to my mental state at the time, was quite appropriate. Isn't God like that? It seems no matter what's going on in my life, He's always using His Word just as it needs to be used in my heart, mind, and life. Since that horrible evening on the bus/train when we got lost, all I could do was worry. What would happen to my husband when I left? He would certainly get lost again! And this time he'd be all by himself. How in the world would little ol' fearful me get on the big jet again to fly home for eight hours? How in the world would I navigate Heathrow and Chicago O'Hare by myself? What was going on with my children? Knowing they're so far away is scary.
This whole experience has really made me see how controlling and untrusting I truly am. But this sermon reminded me..."do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." (Phil 4:6,7) Ah, there was the answer. Instead of worrying about these things in my mind, I needed to present them as requests to God. And I needed to remember who He is and what He's done in the past (thanksgiving). When those things are practiced, peace of mind will come. Not of my own efforts mind you, but supernaturally.
The pastor closed the service by guiding the congregation through a prayer of repentance and thanksgiving, and finally petition for those things about which we're worrying (things such as plane hijackings and train muggings! ) I felt renewed, refreshed, and once again reminded of how huge the God whom I call mine truly is.
It seems Jesus is determined to teach me something, even if it does involve taking me half way around the world to do it! Come back again soon for the details of the "getting lost on public transport in London" story.