In the Bible the way that Christians showed they had decided to become followers of Jesus was by being baptised as believers. September 2nd was a very exciting day as Jo was baptised in a packed church with many of her family and friends travelling to be there too. This is what Jo said about her being a Christian and being baptised.
“I seem to remember it was one summer holiday living in Seer Green, Buckinghamshire that my mum took my brother and I along to the local Baptist church holiday club. We had a fantastic week learning about Jesus singing songs and doing all sorts of craft and sport activities.. it came to the end of the week and we were invited to attend the Sunday service with our parents to show them what we had been learning that week. So we went along and it was from then on that we as a family started to attend the church. After a few years both mum and Dad got baptised and soon became youth leaders at the Friday night youth club. Our family life was wonderful and we had great times together attending Spring Harvest (a Christian holiday) at Butlins at Easter time. Meeting with other Christian families my childhood was great.
In my late teens I however drifted away from the church, friendships changed and church life was no longer part of me. I went to University and got my first job in Marlow where I met my husband Richard in 2002. Although I didn’t attend a church I still had my faith. I was blessed to be a step mum to three handsome boys Ash, Oli and josh. it was very important to me to be married in a church, and so in 2005 we married at Eastnor Castle. We were then blessed with our first daughter Caitlyn later that year and two and a half years later Chloe arrived. I felt so blessed to be a Mummy to two beautiful girls. After the birth of both girls I remember praying, thanking God for the safe arrival of my babies. It was important again for my faith to have our girls Christened. Family life carried on and at the back of my mind I knew that God was with me.
It wasn’t until I hit a pretty low time nearly 3 years ago that I realised that I needed God. I needed him in my life. I cried out, and he was there. I remember that afternoon, the black cloud that had been following me around had lifted.. My body felt really hot and free. Jesus was pulling me back to him. I was so blessed to have such an understanding husband in Richard and my Mum, Dad and Brother Jon have always been there during some low points.
Since that day I’ve felt a completely different person. God has given me strength, each day I know that God is there for me and going to help me out. He knows all my worries and my weakness, yet he still loves me. Even when I was being pulled away God had hold of me and wasn’t going to let me go. He pulled me back to him, and through two very wonderful School Mummy friends Shilipi and Pauline I found my faith again. Thank you ladies for all your continuing encouragement and support. (Continued on the back page)
(Jo’s Story continued) I started to attend NSBC and immediately felt welcome and part of this wonderful congregation two years ago. Our Church family here are so wonderful and supportive and we are so grateful.
Earlier this year I started to think about baptism. It’s something that I’ve thought about doing for a while but to be honest I just couldn’t speak about it. After praying one bedtime I woke up the next morning feeling I needed to know more.. so at Haven Café here which is on a Thursday morning I chatted to Shilpi and Pauline and remembered that Mum and Dad had attended an Alpha course before they were Baptised at their church many years ago. We talked about how wonderful it would be for some of us School mums to get together and find out more about God. We asked Peter and he looked thrilled when we chatted about starting a group. So we have a group that meets on a Tuesday morning, we call it “What is it all about?” and each week we meet at different houses, Peter leads us in prayer and then discussion. Peter truly has been so inspirational for us all, he answers our questions and his passion is wonderful. So thank you Peter for all you’ve done for us, and thank you for putting up with our girlie chats before we start our meetings. This group has given me and I know others such a boost in terms of our faith. It also has made me ready for today, ready to declare that Jesus Christ is my Lord and my Saviour. My life has changed, i have changed. I am a different person, a better person. This is just the beginning of my Christian life.
I wanted to share with you how I was led earlier this year by Jesus. I’ve always loved working with children, and my passion for fitness most of you know I’m crazy about! An opportunity arose for me to fulfil both working with children and outdoor fitness as a Bootcamp Instructor. Firstly I needed to qualify to teach group fitness which I did. Driving up to Cambridge every day for two weeks was quite a test! But I qualified and I honestly believe without God I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing now. My confidence has grown so much.
I instruct up to 20 Key stage 2 school children outdoors during their curriculum time or at after school clubs. I was totally thrown out of my comfort zone a few months back when I was asked last minute to go to a new school and promote what we do at Bootcamp in an Assembly. I prayed and prayed that the assembly would be cancelled.. I really didn’t think I could do it. Me speak out to lots of children? And adults.. no way!
As I was driving to the school that morning I was praying help me Lord how on Earth am I going to do this. Help me!! I arrived and was surprisingly calm.. until I got into the hall and the head of PE told me it there were 450 children plus staff! I wanted to run! The children started to come in and I felt this huge calmness swing over me. I presented to all those children and felt completely relaxed! I can honestly say that God helped me that day, he calmed me. He was with me.
2 Corinthians 5:17 says. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new Has come.