Rector's Letter - June 2000

 So now it's official.  I've finally become sensible.

 I waved goodbye to my twelve-year-old sports car as it disappeared into the night.  It was nearly one o'clock in the morning.  The young man who'd bought the car had just phoned his girlfriend "I've just bought a car off a Vicar!"… He listened to her reply and turned to me, grinning.  "She says you must be a very dodgy Vicar to be doing car deals after midnight!"

 After they'd gone, I stood in the rain and looked at my nice new sensible car, the height of five-door practicality.  A thrifty diesel engine.  Solid.  Reliable.  Safe.  "Oh well," I thought, "I suppose I had to grow-up some day".

 What does the Christian Faith offer us?  A sports car experience for the thrill seeker, or a nice safe secure life?  Unquestionably, Christian lives over the centuries have been closer to the former than the latter.

 Being a Christian isn't about having clipped wings.  It's about being given wings and flying free, having a soul that lives for ever, being able to touch the heart of God. Contrary to popular belief, Christianity isn't about what we cannot do.  It's about what we can do when set free from the burdens of sin and death.  Christ declared "I am come that you might have life, and have it more abundantly".

 I suppose my job as Rector is all about trying to work out what this means for Church life in Astbury and Smallwood.  One thing's for sure, truly coming to terms with our Christian calling is going to be less like driving around in my nice sensible second-hand Saab, and more like the helter-skelter joy of the sports car I reluctantly said goodbye to one dark night this May… I only hope for all our sakes that the buyer's girlfriend wasn't right!

             Jeff Cuttell.

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