This weekend Janet and I travelled to the small town of Wilstermarsch, north of Hamburg, to visit the church there. I have been coaching the young eldership team online since the start of Covid lockdowns, so it was wonderful to be finally visiting them. As they wanted to get to know us better, the trip involved much eating of great food, talking, laughing and ministering.
Maurice & Rachel Nightingale and their son Sam were driving back from Sweden and joined us for lunch on Saturday. After a walk and chat with Marcus and Annemarie and their parents (who lead a church in Pullheim), we headed off for a BBQ with the elders and wives’ families. Janet had brought some fun UK & German photo booth items which everyone loved and caused much hilarity.
On Sunday the church gathered. Germany is somewhat behind the UK coming out of Covid, so masks were in order and about half the congregation were on Zoom. It was great to worship with German songs, some home-grown and some translated classics! The church is small – around 15 in the room and 10 on Zoom.
I spoke on “Seeing with new eyes” from Acts 3. I had actually prepared a different sermon the week before, but the Lord prompted me twice to do that one and we’d already prayed for someone in the church with a physical eye condition the day before. It seemed clear the Lord wanted me to do that sermon! I had word of knowledge about a kidney problem and there was a response from the Zoom congregation.
Janet beckoned me over to the lady she had been praying for- who said that the Lord had told her she must come today as the Lord would give her new eyes to see her situation!
Then we were asked to pray for a man whose friend had been in a coma for three weeks since a farm accident. We prayed and then headed off for lunch.
We went to a very old hotel restaurant full of old people as the team wanted us to experience typical traditional North German food – Labskaus to be exact – a kind of corned beef and beetroot hash served with pickled herrings. Which actually was amazing! The lady at the next table had brought an accordion and soon had the whole restaurant singing along!
With hearts and stomachs full we headed to the airport and home. This morning I got a text to say the man had come out of the coma and recognises family members. God is good!