Friday, 14 March 2014

A story never to be told?

I love nature and could watch it endlessly.  Last weekend while I was at home I heard a huge  commotion.  A great squawking and screeching.  Looking out of the window I saw  two magpies embroiled in a fight watched on by a third.  It looked brutal.  The third bird even joined in at times,their sharp beaks plunging at each other.

Then from all around came other magpies. The noise level grew even more but these ones stayed on the roof tops like a baying mob and observed the fight from a distance. I counted seven in all - hence the title of this post!

Nature is brutal though but we have become removed an remote from that reality.  We were reminded in church on Wednesday evening that the beautiful spring lambs that gambol in the fields across our land will eventually become cutlets!  That is the harsh reality and is why many in good conscience choose to be vegetarian.  We have lost that connection with the roots of our food.

Maybe that is a story that should be told...

As for the magpies? They were disturbed by a passing car and flew off to continue their fight elsewhere.

Saturday, 8 March 2014

I can resist anything but temptation !

Well, a couple of days into Lent and its not going too badly!  I managed lots of exercise and minimal alcohol for the last two days because we had friends visiting from Austria.  London is such a vibrant city to show off. We only scratched the surface really though we didn't rest for long.  The weather certainly delivered with warm spring sunshine making the whole city sparkle!

I realise that I'm pretty poor at self-discipline, hence the title of this post. Its one of my all time favourite quotes!  However, if I can manage a couple of days there is hope!

The Lent book is a fertile source of things to ponder. It doesn't contain any new ideas or novel theology but its written in different styles and language which combined make for a provoking read!  It also has ways to surprise. For example I'd worked out that God is not into punishment on Thursday only to read that thought the following morning in the daily reflection.

Life is rarely about a new discovery. Its all about being reminded.  We joke about the attention span of  a goldfish when the truth is that we're not much better at times!  Unless its something we are carrying a grudge or a desire that we know we shouldn't...

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Six weeks to rescue my life?!

Its Lent! Last night we had a super sermon from Fr Philip North which has had me thinking all night!  Lent is all about setting aside time to reflect and ponder.  Yes, some folk abstain from something they enjoy and others add something into their lives for the season. But the real focus should be on self-examination. Where we are with God. How healthy our faith life is. A sort of spiritual MOT!

So what exactly am I going to do? The obvious one is to give up alcohol - I know I enjoy it too much... but I could just take something on...  I want to spend more quality time reflecting on the Word and I shall be using our own Lenten booklet to do that.  I also want to record what thoughts the daily text has prompted. So far, so good!

As  I read the first day's offering I decided that an alarm clock was just what I needed!  I realised that I take my physical health too much for granted, not enough exercise, too much food, not enough sleep, too much booze!  Not all the time admittedly but more than is good.

This all comes over rather "heavy" but the truth is, as I pondered abstinence I got a strong sense that this is NOT about punishment. God loves us. He wants us to have abundant life - but maybe not quite so abundant as at  present!! So, the deal has been agreed - its about learning to love and care for myself as God would have me do...

So its less or better food and a single glass of wine combined with more sleep and exercise.  I know I'll feel so much better for it... So,why is it so hard?!