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Worship the King. Grow the Kingdom

“But the time is coming – it has, in fact, come – when what you’re called will not matter and where you go to worship will not matter. It’s who you are and the way you live that count before God. Your worship must engage your spirit in the pursuit of truth.”

John 4:23-24 The Message

My Spiritual Walk – Growing in Grace

We are all on a path of spiritual growth together, but each of us experience it in a unique way, and we may be at different stages on it.

It is not a Destination

Spiritual life that has Christ at its centre is not about reaching a destination or a position. It is not a transaction, saying that if you do x then you progress to the next phase. Rather it is an exciting and dynamic journey with times of faster and slower growth. Everything in the journey should draw us closer to Christ.

The spiritual life is often a ‘back-and-forth’ movement with Christ and we are continuously being saved, built, filled, and purposed. This requires that we always see ourselves on a journey seeking spiritual growth through the opportunities that are on offer and through personal disciplines. Hopefully over time there is a progression towards living a more Christ-like life and moving into a more meaningful relationship with God.

Click on the pop-ups below to see what invitations to growth may mean for you.

Expressed differently, spirituality is God’s dance with us. In John Wessels’ book Missing Jesus? Finding the Shepherd we Lost’ this spirituality is compared to a 5-step dance with the steps of:

  1. Conviction
  2. Belief
  3. Repentance
  4. Obedience
  5. Trust

Like any dance, when you have been through the steps once you don’t stop, but continue to repeat the steps, gaining satisfaction that the dance continues with you being part of it. Each time you go through the steps again there is new life and enjoyment to be had from the dance.

Over the millennia, people seeking to deepen their spiritual life and draw closer to God, have found the following disciplines to be the foundations from which spiritual growth springs:

  • Daily prayer
  • Daily Scripture reading
  • Regular corporate worship (fellowship and sharing of time, talents, and resources)
  • Participating in Small Groups (in the Methodist tradition these are Class Meetings and Home Groups)

Practicing these disciplines is the best way to strengthen a sense of spiritual growth within you and help develop a firm foundation in faith to grow in other areas of your spiritual life.

With these solid practices in place, Trinity offers several opportunities for spiritual growth. These are displayed in the graphic that follows.

These opportunities for growth are for anyone wishing to grow in an intentional way and are made up of three dimensions:

  • Growing Inward (Head)
  • Growing Together in relationship (Heart)
  • Growing Outward (Hands)

Spiritual growth happens through all three of these areas, and often in no specific order, but always with a sense of intentional reflection, prayer, and engagement.

We call these ‘opportunities’ because no-one is forced or coerced to do them, nor are they mandatory in any way! What they are is a recognition by members of Trinity and others outside our church that these courses, areas of service, and places of fellowship have helped them deepen their relationship with God or live a more faithful life. By offering them we are hoping that they will have a similar impact in your life and we invite you to engage with them wholeheartedly!

  • At the heart of it, the graphic takes into account that we all want to develop a closer relationship with Christ. For many, the start of this relationship (and the point to which we all keep returning) begins with an earnest Seeking of God, which often quickly moves into a time of New growth in our relationship with God and the church, and opportunities to Grow the Kingdom. Each of these times of growth help us to produce various kinds of fruit in our lives and gives us new opportunities to develop a closer relationship with Christ. This closer relationship moves us to Seek God, starting the process over again.
  • The graphic reflects the idea that growth happens in all areas of spirituality – head, heart and hands.
  • The resources reflected on the graphic are by no means exhaustive. There are many other ways to grow in closeness to Christ and in your relationship with God, but these are the resources we believe are most able to help you grow. Trinity makes them available with the specific intention of inviting you into a journey of growth, exploration and maturity in faith, and fellowship.
  • The graphic is also designed to help you get a picture of where growth could happen in your life and allow you to see on one page the opportunities available to you at Trinity.
  • If you are new to the Christian Spiritual journey, then it may be more helpful for you to involve yourself in programmes or activities which are closer to the outer boundaries of the graphic.
    • Programmes in black font in the graphic should assist in providing a firm foundation for spiritual growth.
    • As you feel led, we highly recommend that over time you do the ‘annual’ and ‘bi-annual’ programmes.
  • Note that the graphic isn’t only a set of courses, but it reflects that spiritual growth also happens through service, giving, community, and fellowship. Growth is slowed when we don’t give of ourselves in community (giving of self, time, resources, etc.) in a sacrificial and generous way.
  • This service in community opens the door to ministry of helps for those called to leadership, administration, governance, hospitality and financial support (giving).

To assist in determining which areas to give your time and energy to, we have developed a ‘Spiritual Self-assessment’ which can help you to identify how you are doing in different aspects of your spirituality and what your next steps for growth could be.

Those who believe they have a calling to become a Local preacher, Prayer guide, or a Home Group leader should engage with their Home Group leader, a minister, pastor, or other leaders of the church to assess a way forward.

Areas in which you can get involved in working with others and God to grow the Kingdom

To find out more or to get involved below please contact the church office (011) 888 1740

If you would like a printable booklet, please download it here.

  • Serving with the Reachout Portfolio team in any of the following areas of ministry – Mission to Mozambique, Child-Headed Household Ministry (Ikageng), Tshepo, Orange Farm, Faith Based Initiative at hospitals, and Jordan House old age home.
  • Soup Kitchen
  • Sewing classes
  • Holiday Club or Pop-up Play Place
  • Women’s Auxiliary
  • 11.30am Service Organisations – Women’s Manyano, Young Woman’s Manyano, Wesley Guild and Young Men’s Guild.

(Contact the Pastoral Care Pastor for more details)

  • Frozen meals
  • Senior Citizens and/or Shepherding our seniors
  • Home and/or Hospital visitation
  • Prayer Steward and Prayer ministry
  • Healing ministry and/or Counselling
  • Flower arranger
  • Door steward
  • Help to set up and serve tea
  • Welcome team
  • Sound technician
  • Digital support
  • Reader, Data projectionist, Visual team
  • Make banners
  • Worship team, musicians, Inspiring Worship Service planning
  • Choir
  • Vestry stewards
  • Communion steward
  1. Property and Security
  2. Information Technology
  3. Marketing
  4. Legal, Compliance and Risk
  5. Staff and operations
  6. Finance and stewardship

(including ‘Discipling’ others)

  1. Get involved in arranging retreats, courses, programmes, pastoral care workshops, First2Last (for Young Adults), life skills training from a logistics perspective, or by being a presenter.
  2. Children and Youth Group leader on a Friday evening/night
  3. Children’s & Youth Church leader on a Sunday morning
  4. Seekers (Confirmation) leader
  5. Home Group or 11.30am Service Class leader
  6. Portfolio Head or member of a portfolio (Children and Young Families, Education and Training, Fellowship, Home Groups & Class Meetings, Pastoral Care, Membership, Prayer and Spirituality, ReachOut, Worship, Youth or Young Adults or any of the administrative portfolio’s)
  7. Society Steward

The Bible’s teaching on giving includes the practice of tithing – but also goes further to encourage gracious and sacrificial giving.  The Grace of Giving is a gracious response to a gracious God.  Our experience of grace is dynamic.  We become gracious in response to our experience of grace.  We also experience grace through being gracious.

A true relationship with God is not only personal but is also social.  Part of the social dimension of that relationship is involvement in your local church.  Part of that involvement is your financial support of your church.  In this social dimension of life we understand that our contribution to church and society is essential and that we do work to earn our ability to give.  God provides for us so that we can provide for God’s work in the church.

According to Wesley, all the necessary instructions can be condensed into 3 simple rules:

  1. Gain all you can
  2. Save all you can
  3. Give all you can

All the facilities and ministries which Trinity provide are made possible by the financial support from its worshippers.

Refer here for more details on Giving to Trinity Methodist Church (Linden)

My Spiritual Walk - Growing in Grace

The best place to start, whether you are ‘Seeking’, in a time of ‘New Growth’, or in a time of ‘Ongoing Growth’ is always to join in Sunday Services (whether in person or online), sign up to receive Trinity’s Daily Devotions by WhatsApp (send a WhatsApp message to 068 153 5941 and ask to be added), and to join a Home Group/Class Meeting

Core Resource which may enable growth

This may be for you, if you…

Seeking (Establishing Faith)

Appropriate / relevant Sermon series sermons and Participant guides …are seeking
Table Talk …are seeking answers to life’s big questions OR know someone who is
Vernacular Confirmation course (3 months) …desire a membership course in vernacular

New Growth

(Laying a foundation – Learning and growing in Christ – Onward growth)

A Simple Rule for life by Neil Oosthuizen (Small booklet) …want to root yourself in Methodism
New members orientation(one evening) …desire church membership
New life in Christ booklet …have recently committed your life to Christ
Foundations course (5 weeks) …are a new Christian, new member, or attended Table Talk
Manna and Mercy (Weekend: Friday evening and Saturday) …desire a big picture view of the bible and our relationship with God
Missing Jesus? (17 week small group study) …desire to know Jesus better and His core messages

Ongoing growth

Invited Course (6 weeks) …want to invite others into the Church
S.H.A.P.E. course …want to know your spiritual gifts and where best to serve God
Spiritual self-assessment …want to identify where there is more scope for spiritual grow
Spiritual disciplines – The Potters Hand (7 weeks) …desire to learn how to grow in intimacy and to open up your life to receiving God’s grace
Third Term teaching courses (differs from year to year) …want to deepen your knowledge
Disciple 1 – Becoming disciples through bible study (34 Weeks) …desire to become a better Disciple
Retreats
…are seeking heart growth and more intimacy with God. These include: Semi silent, Week of Guided Prayer, Ladies, Men’s, Lent, Ascension Day, Advent, etc.
Meet on a regular basis with a Spiritual Director for Spiritual Direction …desire to deepen your relationship with God

‘More information (including outlines and when programs / courses will be offered) for the various resources detailed above can be found below’

Frequency offered: Twice a year

Table Talk is aimed at people (specifically non-members) seeking answers to some ‘big life questions’. Members are encouraged to take on the roles of facilitators and volunteers and invite non-members, within their sphere of influence, to be part of the journey (and can also attend Table Talk with them).

Each session will consist of a meal, a presentation on one of the questions and a small group discussion.

The following questions will be discussed:

  1. Does God exist?
  2. What is the meaning of life?
  3. Why is the world so broken and evil?
  4. Is Jesus important?
  5. What is hope and is there any?
  6. Why be a Christian?

Participants will also have the opportunity to submit additional questions that may be incorporated or addressed sometime during the six weeks.

The next Table Talk will be from Wed 4 May to 8 June at 7.00pm. (And again later in the year from 4 August to 8 September 2022 from 9.30am to 11.30am)

Register online here.

Frequency offered: Quarterly

Vernacular service confirmation is a three month journey for people who wish to publicly confess Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. It is for those who have made a decision or are ready to commit their lives to Christ. The confirmation programme covers Methodism, the structure of the Church, structure of the Bible, Giving, and Sacraments. The journey helps them to know more about Christ and the Methodist institution before they are received as full members. They also attend Trinity’s New Members Information & Orientation evening. A week before their public reception, they share their journey’s testimony. Used resources:

  • Know and Grow
  • Bible
  • Book of order
  • Trinity New Members booklet

Please contact Rev Londeka Mabaso if you are interested.

Please note that the English Confirmation journey is offered to teenagers only. If you are a teenager interested in Confirmation then please contact Pastor Devan Fleetwood youth@trinitylinden.org.za

Sermons which may be useful for those who are seeking God are on Trinity’s website and in some cases, there is a participant guide to supplement the sermon. Click on each of these series titles to go to the series post

Click here for all our available Sermon Series

Frequency offered: Anytime

A small booklet available from the church library.  Contact the church office to borrow or purchase a copy (R50).

Contents:

  1. A Simple Rule for life
  2. Part 1 – Do no harm
  3. Part 2 – Do good
  4. Part 3 – Stay in love with God
  5. Living Spiritually
  6. A short note on John Wesley

Frequency offered: 3 times a year

An Information and Orientation evening for people who wish to become full members of Trinity Methodist Church. The programme covers:

  • Methodism (History and what makes it unique) and History of Trinity Methodist Church (with videos to watch before the orientation)
  • The faith journey and Spiritual Gifts
  • Trinity’s vision and strategic focus for the year with an introduction to its leaders and staff members.
  • An outline and opportunity for discussion about the various ministries which are offered at Trinity and where a person can serve.
  • Giving and Trinity’s finances.
  • The order of service and promises to be made when welcomed into membership. In the service you will make a public confession of your faith in Christ.

These are planned to take place on 10 March, 23 June and 29 September 2022. If you would like to attend, please register onsite after services in the month leading up to the evening or contact the Trinity office.

Frequency offered: Currently under construction

If you would like a booklet which has bible readings and notes to provide information and guidance, which would typically be used during the first 30 days after a person has given their life to Christ, please contact the Receptionist at the church office or email info@trinitylinden.org.za.

Frequency offered: Annually

This is a 5 consecutive week facilitated programme which covers the following:

Week 1: God Invites

Beginning everything, God invites us… God wants to be in relationship with us.

And we respond to the invitation. Included in this is a Christ-centric view of faith (as opposed to a bounded system) as well as a dynamic ‘entering into’ the relationship.

Week 2: Built for Relationships

Many things point to being built for relationships in our faith journey. The invitation from week 1; Scripture points to it (Jesus and others speak about it often); The Trinity is a divine inspiration of dynamic relationship.

We respond to relationship by being part of a community.

Week 3: Five steps to Faith

Faith is a five step process. (John Wessels’ five step dance analogy and explanation).

Week 4: The Cosmic Christ

Recognising the way in which Christ is in all and with all. Using scripture to speak about the way in which this connects us and further develops and strengthens the relationship we have with God.

Week 5: Worship & Grow

Finalising the programme by encouraging us to worship together regularly because we have been built for relationship and to invite each person on further invitations to Spiritual journey initiatives.

Course is planned to take place from 29 June to 27 July 2022.

Frequency offered: Every 2nd year

This will be presented over a weekend – Friday evening, Saturday full day, and Sunday until early afternoon.

Overview:

This course is about the God of the Bible, revealed in both the Hebrew scriptures and the New Testament, a God who is present and active in human history.

Course is planned to take place from 10-12 June 2022.

Contact the church office for more information and sign up online and after services in May 2022

Frequency offered: Every 2nd year

A facilitated 17 week small group study to be offered in 2023, covering:

  • Beginnings
  • Understanding who Jesus of Nazareth is
  • Understanding the significance of Jesus’ birth and ministry
  • The Kingdom Consciousness Movement
  • Kingdom Consciousness Movement – established in Jesus’ practice
  • Kingdom Consciousness Movement – established in Jesus’ teaching about:
  • The Kingdom of God
  • Money and possessions
  • Honour
  • Solidarity
  • Power
  • Understanding the effects of Jesus’ death and resurrection
  • Entrusting yourself to the Shepherd
  • Following the Shepherd every day
  • Understanding and Experiencing the Holy Spirit

Frequency offered: Annually

The course takes us through the Gospels and Acts to see both how God calls us into a relationship with God and, how we can be used by God to invite people into that very same life changing relationship.

This series will further help us to share our faith in a genuine, loving way as we join God on God’ Mission to invite people back to God through Jesus Christ

Outline of the programme (in 2022 this will be offered as a sermon series from 23 January to 27 February 2022 and with small group weekly studies):

  1. Why invite?
  2. Whose invitation is it anyway?
  3. So who is invited?
  4. What gets in the way of inviting?
  5. What does inviting look like today?
  6. What are the risks and rewards of inviting?

If you are not in a Home Group and want to join a small group for deeper discussion, please contact Rev Londeka Mabaso or the church office.

Frequency offered: Every 2nd year

The course helps you discover God’s purpose for your life by looking at your God-given ‘S.H.A.P.E’.

What God made a person to BE determines what God intends for them to DO. A person can understand the purpose they were created for when they understand the kind of person they are. They can then discover the unique way God intends for them to serve.

S – Spiritual gifts – discover what Spiritual gifts you have and how to use these in ministry

H – Heart – What you love to do / what you are passionate about?

A – Abilities – Identify what natural talents and skills you have

P – Personality Traits – Where does your personality best suit you to serve?

E – Experiences – What spiritual, painful, educational and ministry experiences have you had?

Course is planned to take place from 25 August to 29 Sept 2022.

Frequency offered: Anytime

Helps a person to identify which of the following areas they may want to focus more on for growth by answering a few questions online:

  1. Experiencing and connecting with God
  2. Biblical knowledge
  3. Personal Prayer
  4. Spiritual Sharing
  5. Passion for Church and intercessory Prayer
  6. Applying spiritual truths in daily life
  7. Knowledge and practicing spiritual gifting
  8. Connecting with Jesus through connecting with need
  9. Working for the Kingdom (Leadership and Service)

Click here to access the self assessment.

If you would prefer to fill in a manual form and submit it, click here to download, print, and hand in at Trinity.

Frequency offered: Every 2nd year (to next be offered in 2023)

7 week facilitated programme coving 2 lessons per week – including a ‘practice makes perfect’ exercises between weeks

  1. Overview of Spirituality and Spiritual Disciplines
  2. Praying in a balanced and biblical way
    > The Lord’s prayer
  3. Your picture of God
  4. Why and how should I journal?
  5. Intercessory Prayer
  6. The Examen of Consciousness
  7. Centering Prayer
  8. Bible reading as a Spiritual Discipline
    > Lectio Divina
    > Reading the bible.
  9. Study and Spiritual Reading
  10. Befriending God’s Allies (Silence and Solitude)
  11. Lifestyle Disciplines (Simplicity and Service)
  12. Sabbath Rest / Keeping the Sabbath
  13. Why and how should I fast?
  14. Covenant accountability
  15. Putting it all together

Each year in quarter three, Trinity offers a few courses which can assist in personal and spiritual growth. These change from year to year.

Watch the Trinity bulletin and Congregational correspondence closer to the time for the courses planned.

Frequency offered: Every 3rd year

Disciple 1 – Becoming disciples through Bible tudy

The study gives the Old and New Testaments equal time, emphasizing the wholeness of the Bible as a revelation of God.  Disciple draws upon the work of scholars, the personal Bible reading, and study of the participant, and dynamic group discussion to aid understanding of the Bible.  This is a thirty-four week overview of the entire Bible.  It requires independent study each week in preparation for weekly group meetings.

Information evening was in January 2022 – Contact the office if you missed the info evening.

Each year Trinity’s Prayer and Spirituality portfolio arranges different retreat opportunities. These include Semi silent, Week of Guided Prayer, Ladies, Men’s, Lent, Ascension Day, Advent, etc.

In 2022 planning:

  • Ladies Retreat will be held in 2022. Advertising and registration will happen closer to the time.
  • Ascension Day retreat at Delta on Thursday 26th May
  • ‘Retreat in a bottle’ will be available to use during Advent

Frequency offered: Anytime

We encourage people who are seeking to grow their relationship with God to meet regularly with a qualified Spiritual Director.  Spiritual Direction assists people in developing, deepening, and cultivating their personal relationship with God.  It also aims to foster a loving relationship of the Directee with themselves, others, and the world.  Together the Director and Directee explore God’s invitation and the Directee’s response to it.

If you want to know more about this you can contact the office, the Prayer and Spirituality Portfolio head or contact the Jesuit Institute directly and request a Spiritual Director https://www.jesuitinstitute.org.za/request-a-spiritual-director/

Community Life

Community

Trinity Methodist Church is focussed on being an inspired worshipping community.

We are made up of diverse people from all backgrounds and cultures, but we hold firm to the truth that we are all children of God, loved and loving in return. We do not exclude anyone from joining us in worship and are always open to engaging with everyone.

No matter where you are in life or in your spiritual journey, there is a place for you at Trinity.

We believe that Sundays are an incredibly important time in the life of a church because we are gathered together as one community. The very act of gathering for worship makes it clear that we are here to worship God in the Linden and Surrounds area. As such, we strive to have inspired and passionate worship in both the Church and Chapel which allows the Spirit of God to move in the lives of everyone who attends.

We offer five unique and well planned services to meet the worshiping needs of a diverse and engaged community.

Join us on a Sunday to “Worship the King and Grow the Kingdom.”

Families and Young People

We put a lot of effort and energy into building community with children, youth and families of all kinds. Children and youth are not ‘the church of the future’, but the church of today! We believe in teaching, equipping and inspiring children and teens to realise how loved they are by God and how much love they have to offer to those around them. We fully realise that children and teens are part of bigger families and seek to build relationships with families as a whole as well.

Home Groups and Class Meetings

The founder of the Methodist Church, John Wesley, knew that worshiping together on a Sunday was an important time of community, preaching and teaching, but he also encouraged everyone who gathered to worship on a Sunday to deepen their own walk with God through gathering in small groups. At Trinity we say: “Good things come in small circles”.

John Wesley called these small groups Class Meetings, but at Trinity Methodist Church they go by a few different names – Class Meetings, Bible Study, Home Groups, Holistic Small Groups and Support Groups. Even though they go by different manes, they all have the same purpose: to regularly join together fellow believers to share life, be accountable for the work God is doing in you, help each other and to journey personally with God.

We encourage everyone who worships with us to join a small group to deepen their own spiritual journey.

Find out about small groups

Outreach (we call it ReachOut)

A faith community that is not helping the community around them cannot be called a faith community. We believe strongly that we are called by God to do everything we can to uplift others, work for the spiritual and physical wellbeing of other people and share the abundant gifts God has given to us as a community. As a result we annually ‘tithe’ ten percent of all our income to our many ReachOut ministries.

We call on all our members to get involved in some form of outreach work in order to give physical expression to the inward reality that we are a church who wants to see God’s Kingdom come “on earth as it is in heaven”.

Third Term Teaching

For those members of Trinity Methodist Church who want to learn more about what it means to live Christianity in their daily lives and deepen their own spiritual journey we have an annual set of teachings during the third school term. These ‘Third Term Teachings’ cover many different topics, some more practical (e.g. parenting workshops, how to read the Bible, etc.) and others designed to engage with you spiritually (Understanding the Holy Spirit, Manna and Mercy, etc.)

Watch the church bulletin and sign up to receive our weekly email newsletter to find out more about these each year.

Sermons and Testimonies

Each one of us has a story to tell. One of the exciting ways we assist different people in our church to express the way in which God is working in their lives is through sharing a testimony. There are hundreds of testimonies shared each week in small groups and over tea after services – people telling others how God has touched them that week, but occasionally we ask someone to write down or record or share in a Sunday service how the Holy Spirit has moved in their life.

Not only does it encourage others when they hear your story, but it also helps many people to fully understand the ways in which God is at work in the details of their life.

If you would like to be encouraged in your own faith journey by hearing someone else’s story, to go to our testimonies page.

Listen to the testimonies

Still want to know more about growing your spirituality?

Want to know more about how we can help you to deepen your relationship with God and others?

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