Renewing the Covenant

I grew up in a church which had a Wesleyan tradition.  The church had been originally planted as a Methodist mission hall reaching a deprived, inner-city part of Bradford.  Eventually, The Mission parted company with The Methodist Church as the denomination pursued liberal theology.  However, significant elements of its Methodist roots were still in place.

One such element was the annual covenant renewal service.  This usually happened about this time in January and involved a number of things. First, there was opportunity for those in particular areas of ministry such as Sunday School teachers and class (small group) leaders) to rededicate themselves to this calling and be prayed for.

Secondly, there was an opportunity for everyone together to remind one another that we have been called into covenant relationship with Christ and one another through the Gospel.  This involves a willingness to be completely at Christ’s disposal so that he is fully Lord over our lives.  At the centre of the Covenant Renewal Service is this prayer which all say together

I am no longer my own, but yours.

Put me to what you will, rank me with whom you will;

put me to doing, put me to suffering;

let me be employed for you, or laid aside for you,

exalted for you, or brought low for you;

let me be full,

let me be empty,

let me have all things,

let me have nothing:

I freely and wholeheartedly yield all things

to your pleasure and disposal.

And now, glorious and blessed God,

Father, Son and Holy Spirit,

you are mine and I am yours. So be it.

And the covenant now made on earth, let it be ratified in heaven.


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