Reflection for 17 May



Love one another
not as servants and masters
superior and inferior
them and us
but as friends

Love one another
not as strangers passing
occasional acquaintances
nodding heads
but as friends
who share all that life will bring
love one another

know one another
by name and by manner
by all that brings joy
by all that causes pain
by touch and by sign
by all that fulfiils
by all that disappoints
love one another

For this is God’s community
the friends of Jesus and one another
the tellers of good news
the bearers of fruitful gifts
the sharers of abiding love
the outpourers of love in action
so love one another
 – there is much to love.

For this is God’s community
the spirit-filled and the astounded
the mystic and the preacher
the sure and the unsure
the homebird and the stranger
the seeker and the sought
the dancer and the wallflower
the entertainer and the bore
the same and the different
so love one another
 – there is much to love.

 For this is God’s community
the child-like faithful
the carefully obedient
the over burdened
the carefree-soul
the weary voice
the venture catalyst
the constant critic
the social includer
the sorrowful debtor
the quietly confident
so love one another
 – there is much to love

and if we have no love,
then what have we?
and if we have no love
how Dare we,
talk of God
expect grace
hope for justice
inspire liberation
sing praise
offer prayers
name ourselves Christ’s,

– how dare we.

For God is love
and all our words
and all our acts
and all that we would be
are but inadequate
responses to such love.

15 March 2009

Exodus 20:1-7 

1 Corinthians 1:18-31

John 2: 13-22 

 

Keeping the Sabbath, – There is a created rhythm to our work and play, activity and rest – a holy day – for ourselves and for those we have power over – children, slaves, animals. In Deuteronomy it will be extended to remind the people  they had been slaves in Egypt. The Prophets link abuse of poor to breaking the sabbath (e.g.Amos 8: 4-6) – to be involved in issues of justice is to be sabbath people, to speak for the voiceless is to be sabbath people, to ensure the right balance of work and rest for all people is to be sabbath people – let us keep the sabbath.

Raising Temples, – The temple system abused the poor and thus broke the sabbath, as those who worship money so often do. Humans have a tendency to build physical temples, worship buildings, – purpose of the temple – “to the glory of God”  purpose of our buildings – to be engaged in God’s work – Christ is the temple – we are the body of Christ – temple built through the way we live our lives.

Living Foolishly – Why worry about the poor? Why be concerned about anyone other than yourself and yours? Why not build something great to show how wonderful I am? – that is the wisdom of the world, look after no.1 – God’s way is to build communities that support one another, encourage one another, strong and weak, rich and poor, working together so that the whole is always greater than the individual – foolish living that boasts of God.

1st March 2009

Genesis 9:8-17
Mark 1:9-15

How do we mark promises? – ring, handshake, signature, baptism, badge, 

Rainbow – God’s promise, to all creation of a new relationship, to be involved in the world

Used as a symbol in South Africa, Tutu “We are the rainbow people of God! We are unstoppable! Nobody can stop us on our march to victory! No one, no guns, nothing! Nothing will stop us, for we are moving to freedom! We are moving to freedom and nobody can stop us! For God is on our side!”

or Rainbow scarves – Jubilee 2000, our commitment to our world.

Jesus is the new relationship – the beloved Son, living amongst wild beasts, proclaiming good news – Kingdom of God is near (at hand)

We mark promises by living them; a ring means nothing without faithfulness, a badge is pointless unless you live up to the values of the organisation, a handshake is meaningless is you renege of the deal, a signature on a dud cheque, your baptism means nothing if you fail to follow the way of Jesus. 

How will you respond to the promises of God?

Wyken 22 February 2009

Mark 9:2-10
2 Kings 2;1-14;
2 Cor 4;3-6

Mountains as spiritual places experienced by Moses at Sinai, Elijah at 1 Kings 19:11

What are our own reference points?

Key: This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him

 

The disciples want to build dwellings –

dwellings/churches give stability, permanence, connection –

but down side – insular, static, maintenance burden – what are we to do? – listen to Jesus

Coming down from the mountaintop in amongst the crowd becomes involved in  conflicts of real life.

 

The mountain is place to dream…….. imagine ………. inspire  …….listen ……..

Where life can be transfigured, transformed

What is the Vision for our churches – each person; community, building: – what have we been created to be? what can we imagine? how will we inspire? 

Amongst all the voices we must listen to Jesus for “This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him”  Around the Lord’s Table we come to a  place of storytelling, meeting, fellowship. Let us listen and dream.