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Happy Birthday (11-06-20)

A Reading

Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.” “What do you mean? exclaimed Nicodemus. “How can an old man go back into his mother’s womb and be born again?” Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life. So don’t be surprised when I say, ’You must be born again.’ (John 3: 3-8)

A Thought

There have been a lot of birthdays recently. Helen Bent had a birthday last Thursday, my lovely wife Judith on Sunday, and Matthew my youngest today. Happy Birthday Matthew!

We found ourselves reminiscing about birthday parties for the children when they were younger, and how parents enjoyed the activities as much as the child. Skilful magicians who innocently ask the birthday boy “What’s your name Richard?” before receiving the sincere reply “Richard”, and who make their routine look so obvious that everyone confidently knows where the object is hidden, only to be perplexed when the object reappears somewhere completely different.

Our birth into the Kingdom of God is similar.

God already knows everything about us, and calls us by name when he speaks to us.

The participation that he asks of us is so very simple – to say to God “I’m a sinner and I’m sorry’. This simple admission in faith results in us being reborn inside as the Holy Spirit comes to live in our hearts and help us in our daily lives.

We don’t understand how he does it, but we don’t need to know. A new heart has arrived within us, and we have been born again. Birthday joy envelopes God and us.

We can invite the Holy Spirit into our lives and be reborn at the start of each day. Every day is the day of salvation. Happy birthday to you also!

A Prayer

Dear Lord Jesus,

I am sorry that I have sinned.

Thank you for washing away my sins through your death upon the cross.

Please send the Holy Spirit into my life, on this my new birthday.

Amen

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