It is a special occasion to have Stepping Stones Pre-School joining us in worship this morning. Today we salute the wonder-full work of all those involved in this amazing school. During the service we will have the opportunity to support the staff of Stepping Stones as they seek to re-dedicate themselves to the awesome task of caring for young lives and educating fertile minds. Thank you for being among us today!
Today is Valentine’s Day. A day on which our “Cardies culture” encourages us to risk telling another of our love for them with cards, flowers and chocolates. And this week is ASH Wednesday that marks the beginning of Lent—the long journey of Jesus to the Cross—the culmination of Jesus risking his life to tell us of his love for all the world.
A Cross—not a card—is the real sign of love. Let us bare this in mind that when Jesus commands us to love—both neighbours and enemies alike—he is not referring to a soppy or romantic feeling. He is referring to the constant commitment to pursue, promote, preserve and protect LIFE in and for the other. Cross-shaped love is for LIFE. Cross-shaped love will even give up its life for the sake of saving another’s life. Cross-shaped love will choose to be killed rather than to kill. Cross-shaped love continues to treasure the sacredness of life in both neighbour and enemy.