The first Lavish of 2018 took place in our home church, Bethel Baptist.
Tristan asked all the women present to pray for the Lavish ministry, to help her and the leadership team discern God’s will as it goes forward. She read from Ephesians 3: 14-21 – does God want to do immeasurably more through Lavish? Please could we ask you to pray too.
Bec lead us beautifully in worship using the 100th Psalm and a variety of songs and music we focussed on returning to wholeness because of God’s amazing grace:
“Because of Jesus’ unfailing love, I am forgiven, I am restored.”
Hilary shared her experiences of pregnancy, miscarriage and motherhood. There were difficult times but God was there to give her signs of hope. One day she found herself buying spring bulbs and planting them In the depths of winter. The pot was a sign of hope for her, that spring would come. Sure enough, on her return home from the hospital with her new baby she walked up her front path to see the first green shoots poking out of her pot.
If you need advice on what to say to people you know who have had a miscarriage, There is help from the Miscarriage Association’s Simply Say campaign,
We also heard from Lucy, who represents The Junction Cardiff, offering counselling support for baby loss or crisis pregnancy. We saw a photo from The Empty Photo Project which shows real hurting people deep in the messiness of life. Can you be there for people during desperate times?
Hilary closed her story with one of those God-incidences that we often experience in Lavish. She led us all in the prayer for blessing from Ephesians, the very one that Tristan had opened the evening with:
“When I think of the wisdom and scope of his plan, I fall down on my knees and pray to the Father of all the great family of God—some of them already in heaven and some down here on earth— that out of his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you the mighty inner strengthening of his Holy Spirit. And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts, living within you as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvellous love; and may you be able to feel and understand, as all God’s children should, how long, how wide, how deep, and how high his love really is; and to experience this love for yourselves, though it is so great that you will never see the end of it or fully know or understand it. And so at last you will be filled up with God himself. Now glory be to God, who by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare to ask or even dream of—infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes. May he be given glory forever and ever through endless ages because of his master plan of salvation for the Church through Jesus Christ.”
Thank you, Hilary, for being honest, hopeful and helpful. Thank you to the women of Bethel Baptist for your welcome, and giving us a beautiful space where we could come together, to listen and to share.
The next Lavish Cardiff evening is Saturday 16th June at Bethany Baptist Church, Rhiwbina, CF14 6LA. See you there.
PS Photos to follow