Trevor Jones Induction
Joe Gregory, President of The Connexion was delighted to be invited to preach at the Induction Service for Trevor Jones as the new Pastor at Sheppey Evangelical Church, following his retirement from Sheppey last year.
The service was led by Andrew Higgins, who was joined by David Lockett, Chair of The Connexion Trustees and Bethany Burrage, Trustee and Pastor at Rosedale Community Church.
Trevor spoke powerfully about his call to lead the church and his journey as Pastor so far. Like many of the great people in the Bible who were chosen by God, he wrestled with the Lord before agreeing to be the next Pastor of SEC. The key thing that the Lord made clear to him is that He would be with him, he would not be alone in his ministry. Trevor shared how all the practical details have been sorted out by God even though he still has to work for 4 days a week as a carpenter. 'The Lord has been changing me and my heart is for you', proclaimed Trevor in his moving address.
Trevor's wife, Julie, who is a prison officer and mother, also spoke with great honesty and humour about the challenges of now being the Pastor’s wife. Julie encouraged the church by saying that she recognised that there were people with gifts in the church and God was getting people ready to move out. She concluded with 1 Thessalonians 5:11, 'Encourage one another and build each other up'.
As Chair of the Trustees, David Lockett carried out the formal Induction part of the service, asking Trevor to acknowledge his call to ministry before God and before the congregation. In turn the congregation promised to pray for and support Trevor as Pastor. Duly inducted, spontaneous applause broke out in the crowded church!
Trustee, Bethany Burrage, who had travelled down from Hertfordshire, led the congregation in an impressive Spirit-filled prayer over Trevor and Julie, and greetings from other Connexion churches were heard before singing 'The Goodness of God'.
Joe Gregory, who has been a friend of Trevor for many years, preached on Jeremiah 1:4-10, which outlines the account of the Lord calling Jeremiah into His service, focusing particularly on verse 5, 'Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart'.
Joe emphasised how crucial it is that the local church members affirm and encourage Trevor and Julie. Adding that it’s worth remembering that all of our Pastors and Ministers in The Connexion need prayer and practical support with additional prayer for their families, concluding, 'It’s incredible how one or two encouraging words make such a difference. Say nice things, don’t just think them!'