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Dear COA Family,

In the past three and a half months since I first joined COA, my family and I have been so welcomed by your hospitality and your embrace of us. And I have been overwhelmed by your support for my leadership of the church!

Yet the challenges that are facing us are great. As the hymn goes: “Fighting and fears (exist) within and without.” We are seldom spared from troubles that afflict us both in our church and within our hearts and also in the outside world.

In the face of such insurmountable odds, I have often wondered if we can ever have the power to truly overcome our challenges or reasonably hope for a better future and outcome from facing all our adversities.

We can easily become discouraged and even be tempted to give up our faith as a result.

Here is where the promise of the season of Easter comes: God has raised Jesus from the dead by his great power and that same power is at work in our lives today!

Paul writes in Ephesians 1:18-21 about the working of God’s power in us and his prayer that we will understand it:
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.”

So, whatever you are facing in this week, know that God’s power is at work within you not only to strengthen you for his work, but also to break through every spiritual opposition that seeks to hinder you.

The power God uses is the same as that which he used to raise Jesus Christ from the dead to a new resurrected body that is fit for the eternity in heaven.

May we not only be encouraged by this truth, but also be able to appropriate God’s power for our lives.

I pray that we will see and receive his strength for this season and beyond!

God bless,
Revd Ian