Okay, so I have been failing at life when it comes to writing a recap. I’ve been stopped after writing only a paragraph and have just let it set for almost an entire week. So, now that the week has almost come full circle, let’s recap.
Last week Wednesday, we woke up early to attend a Eucharist service in Westminster Abbey (the sneaking way to get inside without paying). It is absolutely beautiful. We were led into a very small room for the service, though. I love the liturgy of a Eucharist service. To me, that was one of the most restorative things I’ve done since being here. Some of our team were a bit surprised to find wine in the communion cup, but I was mostly surprised that it was white wine instead of red. I love coming to the table and celebrating the Lord’s Supper. And in Westminster! Westminster is one of the most beautiful sights I’ve seen in London. Of course you are not allowed to take pictures inside, but its beauty is unmistakable.
We then headed to Piccadilly Circus and purchased tickets to see the musical, Les Miserables, for Thursday night. Then we were off to go stand outside Buckingham Palace in hopes for a good place to stand to watch the changing of the guards. Now, I actually ended up not having the best place to stand to see the changing of the guards, but I did get to see it. When my mother came to London twenty-fiveish years ago, she did not get to see the changing of the guards, so it was something I made sure to see.
Our team then ate lunch and parted ways. Eliott and I went to Hyde Park and rented bikes to ride for the next hour. Hyde Park is absolutely gorgeous. It helps that the weather was also quite terrific, which has been rare this summer.
Thursday, Macy and I set out to see the Tower of London. First, we met up with Rachel and ate lunch at Borough Market. That was seriously the best lunch I’ve had since being here. Borough Market is basically just a bunch of local vendors selling food, and it was fantastic. I ate a fried cheese sandwich. Which you might be thinking is quite plain, but let me tell you, it was almost like the Kingdom was coming right in that sandwich.
Macy and I were then set for our trip to the Tower of London. We ventured around the tower, saw a raven, saw the Crown Jewels, and explored different towers. It is so crazy massive. Plus, my day was made when I finally got a picture with a Beefeater.
We then met back up with Rachel, ate lunch in Chinatown, and then went to the musical. Now I have never been to a musical before, so that in itself was fun. Our seats were pretty far back, but we still had a pretty good view of the stage. I don’t really know a lot about the musical, but Rachel had seen it before, so it was enjoyable just to watch how much fun she was having with the whole thing. When it ended, she was cheering and yelling and clapping. It was really a lot of fun.
Of course, after Wednesday and Thursday ends, our weekend also ends. So Friday meant going back to work. We started the day by going to Pastor’s house for the weekly Manse Prayer. I have come to really value this time each Friday morning. We get together and sing songs out of a small praise book. We sing without any accompaniment or piano. We praise God, no matter what our voices sound like. We praise God. We then have a time of “popcorn” prayer which we raise our requests to God. I absolutely love it.
After prayer, we had a lunch meeting with Pastor and his wife to go over some business items. For example, we brought him some different ways that we want to witness to the community. He told us, “Monday is when the work really begins.”
Saturday was a full day. We had a seminar about witnessing to Muslims from 10:00 AM until past 3:00 PM. That was really informative. We learned a lot about what Muslims believe, which is something I really don’t know all that much about. Saturday evening we had the NYI BBQ, which was a great time of fellowship with the church community. I ate some questionable South African sausage and some grilled chicken. I really do love this community. It was great. And it also never rained! Praise God.
Sunday morning, our team led a joint Sunday School with the adults and children all together. It went well. Rachel prepared the message. And although it ran a little short, it was really interesting to both children and adults. We included an illustration of sin by putting iodine on our hands and since iodine is unable to wash out with just water, it showed that we cannot remove our sin ourselves. Macy (who did the illustration) then put Oxy Clean in the water (showing that God can only remove our sins) and the iodine came right out.
During the main service, there were two baby dedications. (Next Sunday we will have three baptisms!) Pastor continued his sermon series on the Prophecy and End Times. The sanctuary was packed and we had to bring in more chairs! Praise God!
After the service, we went out to eat with a group of people. It ran long and I was getting quite tired by the time the bill was paid for and we left. And then I rode in a car with someone whose driving is good, but made it hard for my food to settle well. The Sunday evening service was the NMI service, which our team also led. We had worship, a panel discussion where we each searched about God’s call in general and the call God has placed on each of our lives and how we were each brought here to London through Youth in Mission. The evening ended with a message by Sidney about Abraham’s call and how God calls us to leave where we are to follow Him.