Janice’s Witness Talk
Janice’s Lay Witness Talk: AGM 10th June 2017:
It wasn’t my intention to do a Witness Talk, but as no volunteers came forward this time to share an experience with us, I had this “low-wattage” light bulb moment that perhaps I could share with you what the Lord has recently asked of me. And what I am going to share, many of you are probably already doing to a lesser or greater degree, but here goes…
I guess there are many of us who think “I can’t do that” or “I haven’t done anything worthy” when it comes to giving a Witness Talk at an Ultreya, and I have to confess, that I am such a person. What I want to do in this talk is to assure you all that however small an act or deed – done in Jesus name – is worthy of a Witness Talk. We want to hear your stories, celebrate them….and let them encourage us.
The Lord has recently been showing me the worth of the ministry of the written word, of sending notes and cards. In Cursillo, we know how much it means to us to receive the love, prayers and encouragement that this ministry avails. But what of our families, our churches and communities – how much would the receiving of such messages mean to them?
There are many situations into which we can send a card or note that says we are thinking of and praying for them: to welcome them into our communities or churches, when we know someone is unwell, when there is a birth or bereavement, at exam times, difficult times, to say thank you or sorry, and I know there are many other occasions. Keith and I were saddened to hear of a young lady whom we had known as a member of our church family when she was growing up, and was now in a London hospice and had only a short while to live. We had last seen her when her banns were being called just three years previously. I felt I wanted to let her parents know that they were all in our thoughts and prayers by sending a card. Did I do that? Sadly, no. Another plan that comes to nought!
Soon after Easter, we heard she had lost her fight against cancer. We sent a card and letter of condolence and attended her funeral. In the service attended by so many young people, we heard about her life and the way she embraced life, and loved her family and friends. The service was uplifting and inspiring – full of faith, hope and love. I sent another card to Penny and Michael her parents, to tell them what a privilege it had been to be present at the funeral and to feel the love surrounding the occasion. It was this that led me to think that this is something I could continue to do for the Lord whenever an occasion arises. It is early days yet, but it is happening.
We live in a technological age so let us not forget this aspect of messaging through the social media of Facebook, Twitter and e-cards, and of course, emails. Keith and I have been the recipients of messages of love from friends through this medium in recent days when our beloved cat died, which have helped us through this time of loss. I did say at the beginning that this is a small act of witness and that many of you are already doing this, but, I hope you will be encouraged to think about the way God is leading you in His work in our environments, and be willing to share your stories with us. Thank you.