Readings for 2nd Sunday in Lent
Genesis 12: 1-4a, Romans 4: 1-5; 13-17 and Matthew 3.1-12
Monday 6th March
In the reading from Genesis God says to Abram that he will bless him and make a great nation from him. But it doesn’t stop there, it is so that in Abram “all the families (or nations) of the earth shall be blessed.” This blessing of all people was reason for the Jews to be God’s chosen people. It is also a part of our faith; we are called and chosen – not simply to be special – but to be the vehicle through which God is present in the world and the world encounters him.
Posted in Lent, Observation, Reflection
Tagged abram, bless, encounter, genesis, God, hpc, huddersfield parish church, impressions from st pete, jews, Lent, Prayers, st peter's, thoughts
23rd February 2015
In “Love Wins”, Rob Bell says that it is all too easy to sanitise and tame God:
“Imagine a high-school student whose family is part of a Christian church. She belongs to a Christian youth group, has only Christian friends, reads only Christian books and has to attend Christian chapel services, because itsmandatory at the Christian high school she attends.
That student can potentially become so anesthetized to Jesus that she is unable to see Jesus as the stunning, dangerous, compelling, subversive, dynamic reality that he is. She has simply sung so many songs about Jesus that the name has lost its power to provoke and inspire.
Her “nearness” can actually produce distance.
At the same time, there are Christians who have raised support, gathered supplies, travelled thousands of miles into the farthest reaches of the globe to share the good news of Jesus with “unreached people,” who upon hearing of Jesus for the “first time,” respond, “That’s his name? We’ve been talking about him for years…”
God is not something to own or to control. We can’t tell other people that they are outside of God’s love. At any moment in our lives, whether old or young, whether new Christian or life-long believer, we may encounter God in the most unexpected and inconvenient ways.
The Rev’d Simon Crook – Assistant Curate – Huddersfield Parish Church
In a Gesture
“How was it that you experienced this?” he prompted softly, watching her gesture while she spoke.
She reshaped her hands as if to cradle a tiny object.
Moved her cupped hands one over the other, cradling.
Was still. . . .
Gasped slightly as the stillness caught her
with the gentleness of a blowing whisper that took her breath away.
We watched the simplicity of the movement – and we too gasped at the beauty of God touching another’s soul.
His touch coming to birth again – in our presence.
Clearing the Blockages
The waste disposal unit hadn’t worked effectively and so the sink wouldn’t drain, and then the washing machine fouled up. The kitchen ceased to function.
I tried the no-effort magic drain solvents. But 2 bottles and twice eight hours later there was no improvement. It obviously wasn’t reaching the right place. No quick solutions.
Further investigation and dismantling a convenient outside elbow in the waste pipe solved the sink drainage! Easy!!
But the washing machine? A clear waste-pipe, yet the machine still would not drain. The pump just would not work. The ‘dis-ease’ in the system was more serious. Indeed the backed-up waste was in the machine with the washing!
I knelt to release the filter, and only when on my hands and knees was I able to see a tangle of broken flower stems behind the filter. It was painstaking to release the tangle, easing each small piece out one by one, the light of a torch needed to see the way.
Waste not dealt with properly. Many hours labour to clear it. Humility to kneel and bend low and to shine the light for the cleansing task.
Many thoughts provoked within me about how Jesus deals with my messes. . . . And my responses to His dealings.
The Kingdom of God is like a householder who found the waste pipe was blocked. . . .
A modern parable?