Chester in East Lancs

A number of us supported the ‘Keswick in East Lancs’ autumn convention last week. We live in an especially godless part of the world, so the few Bible-teaching events that exist here are especially well supported by the local churches -you would be forgiven for thinking. Dr Tim Chester was the speaker, sometime pastor at Boroughbridge and now involved with the Crosslands Training programme. Several of his books I have on my shelves and it promised to be a helpful and profitable weekend.

The theme was Becoming like God’s Son, with passages expounded from Romans, Galatians and 1 John. One illustration that I rather liked was that of gardens attached to houses on a given street. Some are pretty, filled with flowers, while others are unkepmt, weeds growing everywhere. “Why is this?”, Dr Chester asked. It was not random chance, or bad luck, but evidence that some householders had gone to the trouble of weeding and planting, while others had let their plots grow wild, ignoring and neglecting what grew there. The Christian’s heart must be cultivated, dug and maintained, while the Holy Spirit plants and grows His virtues. Neglecting our hearts will allow the thorns and thistles of the Fall to smother the light and consume our graces; cutting down those invaders will allow the delicate flowers and fruits to blossom and flourish.  

Until the Spirit is poured upon us from on high, And the wilderness becomes a fruitful field, And the fruitful field is counted as a forest. Isaiah 32:15

Photo Credit: SB