Well it’s Holy Week …and the strangest experience ever. Apparently, the last time Easter was cancelled was during the Black Death. I love the thought from Rev Richard Coles (C of E vicar writing in the Radio Times) who expresses the drama of Easter as the most surprising escape from lockdown in history. Everything was transformed as the disciples discovered that the death of Jesus was a lie. Later this week I will have some notes and sermon to reflect on this period. Social media seems to be gaining popularity as a means of effective communication. Last week the Circuit ministers had a trial run of a virtual meeting using software entitled Zoom. It was very successful and perhaps we can use this again in the future. In this newsletter I share the final scene of Act 1 and touch on the 5 senses in Mindfulness. You are all in my thoughts and prayers and we look forward to church life returning to normal.

Shalom

BIBLE

CREATION; CRISIS; CALLING; CONVERSATION; CHRIST; CHURCH & CONTINUATION.

 

In scene 1 God endows us with gifts. In scene 2 we discover what it means to be human. In this scene we see a core building block of love. Now the final scene of Act 1.

Act 1 Scene 3

A world of meaning Genesis 1&2; Psalm 145 1-16; Proverbs 8:1-36; John 1:1-17

  • It is widely thought that the above reading from John was inspired by the creation stories.
  • John homes in on the pattern made by the daily creation narrative.
  • The pattern is called logos…or translated as logic. John depicts the logos of love.
  • This love intensifies in Psalm 145.
  • We discover life is full of patterns and stages in growth. Trees plants and animals. We try to see how God weaves His creation in many different dimensions.
  • We understand that God created order from chaos.
  • In turn live in that atmosphere of order from chaos. We can choose positive or negative patterns.
  • Many choose the patterned logic of rivalry, logic of compliance to a power. Logic of the universe being a machine for our personal purposes. There is a plea for wisdom in Prov. 8
  • However John points out a pattern of light and love which continues in his gospel.

QUESTIONS

  • What one idea from these passages intrigues, provokes, disturbs, challenges, encourages, helps or surprises you?
  • Consider a possible time when you have lived by the logos of rivalry; logic of compliance to a power or the logic of the universe being a machine.
  • Imagine what life would be like if you lived closer to the Logos of love.

MINDFULNESS

FIVE SENSES: SIGHT; SOUND; LISTEN; SMELL; TOUCH & TASTE

As I continue to practice Christian mindfulness, I have developed a whole new awareness of the sensory nature of the bible. In these notes I am going to focus on sight.

It is dynamically expressed through the healing of the blind man. Mark 10: 46-52

I love Isaiah 42:26 I will keep you and make you to be a covenant for the people and a light to the Gentiles, to open eyes that are blind.

ACTIVITY With the weather improving and the allowance of one walk a day feel free to use this as a walking meditation. We are used to walking from a to b often without thinking or we are tied up in thoughts. However, walking with awareness is more difficult than we think. Walking meditation is about attending to the experience of walking. Choose a specific time or period . Walk at a pace that maximises your ability to pay attention. Be aware of the sensations of lifting your feet and the shifting weight of your body.

Observe your surroundings.

  • See how many colours which surround you.
  • Have a look at the different depths of green.
  • Look upwards at the roof tops of trees.

THE BIBLE BEHAVING BADLY

See 2 Timothy 3:16,1
When Paul wrote this, the New Testament had not been formed and the Old Testament had not yet been agreed upon. The Jewish scriptures had not yet been fully instituted.
Paul uses the word ‘inspired’ which means God breathed – it is translated from the Greek word Theopneustos. If it was God written the Greek would be Theographos.

It is not God who does the writing. He commits to actions, engraves things and gives the Law to Moses
Individuals wrote the messages without realising that they were going to contribute to a bible. Paul refers to Jannes and Jambres who opposed Moses (2 Timothy 3:8) However Jannes and Jambres are not written into the Jewish scriptures.
It is not suggested that God was not involved. I like to think that it was a work of collaboration. In their writing the writer passed on information about God in their own language and cultural experience
Thus says the Lord, indicates a powerful inspiration to prophets such as Isaiah who was gripped with something that was beyond them.

God’s breath is a dynamic movement. It is expressed in Gen 2:7 as the breath of new life. Ezekiel’s vision of the Valley of Dry bones shows God breathing life into skeletons, Ezekiel 37:
Nick Page suggests that we inhale the bible.

  • If you feel that you are drowning. God fills your lungs with life giving breath
  • If the breath is knocked out of us by the events and burdens of life. The bible brings oxygen and hope.
  • When we are light and dizzy with climbing emotional heights, the bible feeds us with oxygen to help us continue the climb.
  • The breath of God makes us alive.