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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

18 October 2017: Susanne Irving, Life Church Petersfield

Why do the Alpha course?

The Alpha course gives the opportunity to explore the Christian faith in a non-judgmental and safe environment, so it is ideal for those who have no or little faith and want to find out more. However, I would argue that it is also beneficial for Christians – if only to notice afresh what a difference Jesus makes.

The session on forgiveness reminded me of what life was like before I became a Christian 25 years ago. I still remember the day when all the food I had left was a bag of dried beans. Worse than the physical hunger was the inner emptiness and sense of shame. I did not recognize the woman who had got to the point where she threatened her boyfriend with a knife in a fit of rage.

If anyone had told me that I would not only forgive the man who repeatedly stole from me and manipulated me to feed his addiction and left me with a huge amount of debts, but would one day work with others who were affected by problem gambling, I would have been incredulous – yet this is the journey I have been on since I first recognized that we do not have to carry our burdens on our own. We can entrust them to Jesus, the ultimate burden-bearer, who invites us to come to Him and find rest - and proved that He meant what He said through His death and resurrection.

Susanne and her husband, John, have published a book relating their efforts to climb Mount Kilimanjaro - How to conquer a mountain: Kilimanjaro lessons

The next Women's Brunch will be held on Saturday 21 October at Herne Farm Leisure Centre

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