Prayer Diary June 2024

Dear friends,

We hope you found our March prayer diary useful in praying for Saffron Walden Bible Focus, and that this one will be equally useful.


  • We continue to thank the Lord for the faithful commitment of many who have been involved with Bible Focus since its inception in 2016, and those who have ‘come on board’ more recently.
  • At the July Team meeting we shall have a visit from someone who will give us some guidance on ‘succession planning’. Please pray about our need to relieve the pressure on several of our team members.
  • We are unable to provide the usual children’s programme at the autumn event this year, due to lack of leaders. Please pray for the Lord’s solution to this problem.

Autumn event

  • Give thanks that this year’s event is still possible
  • Pray for the speaker, Martin Salter from Bedford, and that his theme of ‘Freed to Serve’ will have a radical effect upon the hearers and, through them, on the churches from which they come.
  • Pray for safety and good health for Martin, and for all who attend.
  • Pray for a large attendance, and for all who will take part in any way.
  • Please pray, too, that the publicity we issue to the churches will be distributed and the event enthusiastically publicized.


Pray that SWBF continues to provide encouragement through Bible exposition and fellowship for believers in the town and further afield

Prayer Diary March 2024

Dear friends,

I am pleased to announce a couple of changes within Saffron Walden Bible Focus which, it is hoped, will ease some of the administrative pressure on the Team and also enhance the effectiveness of our ministry.

  1. Our monthly prayer meetings (in person and via Zoom) have not been very well attended so these will be discontinued and, instead,
  2. The Monthly Message will become a quarterly Prayer Diary, so there will be the opportunity for even more prayer than before!

Spring Event March 2024  (Theme: The Greatness of God)

  • Give thanks for the 70 or so who attended, and for the positive feedback. Ephesians 1:15,16
  • Pray that some of the blessing received will be shared with the fellowships from which the people came. Ephesians 1:17


  • Praise the Lord for the commitment of the many people who have made Bible Focus possible since 2016. Philippians 1:4-6
  • Pray for those who through age, health or for other reasons are contemplating stepping down. Matthew 11:28
  • Pray that the Lord will raise up new people to take their place. Mt 9:38
  • Pray for individuals with skills in administration, planning and practical tasks to come forward. I Corinthians 12:7
  • Pray for leaders and helpers to provide the programme for children and young people and wisdom regarding the future of that provision. Ecclesiastes 12:1


  • Pray that the original vision of providing encouragement through Bible exposition and fellowship for believers in the town and surrounding district will never become dimmed or replaced. Romans 15:13

Monthly Message Feb 2024

“Faith expressing itself through love”   (Galatians 5:6)

 Dear friends,

Writing to the Galatians, Paul makes an astonishingly bold statement (5:6): “…in Christ neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value”.  Wow!  The outward marks of your religion amount to nothing. Moreover, the lack of such outward marks is no disadvantage.  It is like saying, “Simply being an Anglican, or being a member of a Baptist church, etc. does not guarantee salvation”.  Paul does not mince his words.  “The only thing that counts”, he says, “is faith expressing itself through love”.

We mustn’t miss the context here.  Paul is not referring to faith in anyone or anything, but faith in Christ (whose death alone provides forgiveness and eternal life). So how do we express that faith?  He has a rather surprising answer to that question.  He would not, of course, discount baptism, or a verbal testimony, nor an eagerness to grasp sound doctrine.  All these things are important.  But of paramount importance (‘the only thing that counts’) is “faith expressing itself through love”.

It is a sad fact that Christians do not always express their faith through love.  Often sound doctrine has been held in a spirit of self-righteousness.  Patrick Mitchel (The Message of Love”, BST, p225) helpfully says: “It is faith that leads to a dynamic relationship with God, empowered by his Spirit, and evidenced in a life of practical action for the good of others”.  That last phrase is what the Bible means by ‘love’.

If love means ‘practical action for the good of others’, how far is my faith expressed through love?  The Greek word translated “expressing” here means ‘to be at work, or in action’.  Our word ‘energy’ derives from it.  So, the saving faith I have in Jesus Christ should be seen in the effort I put in to being loving towards others.

A mark of a good church is not just its teaching, but its faith expressed through love.

In your church, and in your life, what is “the only thing that counts”?

In Christ,

Tony Mason