JSP in Wilsden, West Yorkshire
Happy Jesus Shaped People? Bible study group more than double the size before JSP (many ‘camera shy’—so not on our photo!). But don't assume that everything is hunky dory. We are a Yorkshire village church, so no leaping around with excitement at the thought of yet another discipleship course! If we as a church were a disciple, we might be Thomas, stood with hands on hips questioning not, 'I won't believe it till I see the wounds' but certainly, 'What do we need to this for? Have we been doing it wrong all these years?'
Well, half way in on JSP, perhaps some of us feel, ‘Yes… we have been doing it, if not quite wrong, not quite right either.’ Everything from deep and meaningful conversations to hilarious sharing of stories. Asking, ‘are we a team with a common purpose?’ Maybe not entirely, but certainly a team in the making. Already enjoying learning about each other, describing it as being part of a great big hug!
Struggling with theology, but also recognising Jesus didn't choose theologians for his team, but doers and questioners and mistake makers. We have grappled hard with why Jesus kept saying, ‘don't tell anyone about me or what I've done’. Perhaps he needs us to know more about him before we tell others, to make Him our friend before we introduce Him to our friends. To be Jesus-Shaped ourselves, before we expect others to be Jesus Shaped. We have not much more than half of our JSP adventure to go. To be changed takes longer than 15 weeks, but we are already altered, the renewal has begun, and I can't wait to see what Jesus Shaped looks like here in Wilsden.
Sharon Fell, Lay Church Leader, Wilsden Trinity Church