Summary: A sermon about how the future is built on the legacy of the past and how we can learn to help each other to pursue after Jesus

Hi Everyone, I want to start by saying thank you to you all for the welcome that we have received since our move back up to Cumbria, it has been truly amazing and a real blessing, helping us all to feel really loved and appreciated.

Thank you all for praying for Annie at the end of last year, I know that a number of people have asked when we have seen folks around town how she is doing and we are really pleased to say that she is doing really, really well. We believe that God healed her and restored her to full health so thank you for praying for her.

I hope that many of you will be able to join us later for lunch, which I know that my boy Caleb is really looking forward to. I really hope to be able to get to meet as many of you as possible not just today but over the coming weeks. But I know that some of you will be wanting to get to know a bit about us.

Annie and I will have been married for 12 years in October, she is a primary teacher by trade she loves music and plays both the piano and violin. Caleb is 9 and is mad about football he sometimes changes his allegiance to the club that he follows but I am trying to convince him that he should follow his home town team Hull City, which has become more appealing to him since they got promoted back to the premiership this season he also loves to play guitar and piano, Talitha is 7 and also loves the piano but is also really crafty and really enjoys getting stuck into things in the kitchen, she is a people person and will talk your ear off if you let her.

As for me I became a Christian when I was 14, I am very proud to call myself a Yorkshire man and Doncaster is my home town, I have worked with young people for about 18 years in both church and secular contexts. I enjoy all the usual sort of pass times reading, films, spending time with the family and stuff like that, but my big other passion in life aside from Jesus is American Football, which I used to play and coach up until a few years ago when a knee injury put an end to that so now I am a long suffering Miami Dolphins fan. To put a bit of context into following the Dolphins, I like to think of it kinda like being a Liverpool fan, they were Awesome in the 70’s and 80’s but since the 90’s they’ve really struggled to be anything other than mediocre. As for English football I am a nominal Hull City fan, I used to play both codes of rugby and like to see Sale winning in Union and Hull KR in League. So that’s a bit of a taster about me and my family, we really do feel so blessed to be coming into such a loving and welcoming church family and we cannot wait to find out what God has in store for us all.

Now let’s have a look at this passage of Scripture.

It really has been great to tell people that I would be coming to join you here St Thomas’. Believe it or not you guys have a great reputation, I could not tell you how many people I have told that I am coming to St Thomas’ Kendal and they’ve gone “ohhh that’s a great church”. Usually this is followed up by statements about how you’ve reached into your community, how you’ve helped people out, how you’ve welcomed folks in the past, how you’ve seen folks come to faith. You see people have heard about you, they know about you, they know that you have done a lot of great things for the Kingdom. It really has made me even more excited about joining in with this awesome church.

And this is where we find the writer of Hebrews, he’s kinda doing the same thing. In the previous few chapters we track with the writer the history of the Hebrew people, he walks his readers through the great patriarchs of the faith from Adam, to Noah, to Abraham , Isaac, Jacob, Joseph and Moses, he draws their attention to the great generals of Gideon, Samson , Barak and Jephthah, he reminds them of their greatest king in David and the prophets like Samuel, the writer of Hebrews reals this list off for one reason only, he wants us to see that these giants of the faith although amazing people they are not the pinnacle of the faith, in fact in the verse previous to where our reading started today the writer says that God has provided something better for us.

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