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Five members of our church family are getting confirmed today.  I am praying that Ore Adeshokan, Sam Alderson, Brandon Bartram and Samuel and William Parsons will be built up in their faith as they take this big step forward.  I hope you will pray for that too.  I am also looking forward to welcoming The Rt Revd Rod Thomas, Bishop of Maidstone.  He will be leading the service and confirming these five candidates.          

My verse for the candidates today is first given in the Old Testament, and then reiterated twice in the New: “Those who trust in the Lord will never be put to shame” (Isaiah 28:16, Romans 10:11).  

What does it mean to be, “Put to shame”?  It means being left with nothing, humiliated and without anything to claim in our defence.  It would be bad enough to be put to shame before other people.  Imagine making a total mess of life and having to face everyone.  We fear that.  But worse by far, imagine being put to shame before God at the end, when he judges our lives!

Yet God says, “Those who trust in me will never be put to shame”.  Suppose we were to lose everything in this world, Jesus will stand by us.  And when God’s judgement does come, Jesus will still stand by us.  He died for us so that he can step forward on that day and say, “I know this person.  They trust in me.  I died for their sin and shame”.  And God the Father will say, “Quite right, I have nothing to say against your friend, Jesus”.  Those who trust in him will never be put to shame, in this life or the next.         

What a solid foundation that is; what a secure basis from which to move ahead in life!  If we can launch out into the future certain that we will never be put to shame then we need not be afraid of anything.

Ore, Sam, Brandon, Samuel and William: keep your trust firmly in him always, and know for sure that you will never be put to shame.


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