Poetry

Palm Sunday is the last stop for most of us on the way to Good Friday. If this were your first time around the story, you would have no idea what lies just a few short days in the future. The tone is exultant, the mood is jubilant. Israel's Messiah has arrived to take charge, the new king to rule and make things right is here!Of course, most of us are not on this journey...

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Did you know 2016 was pre-named 'The Year of Mercy'?  I'm not sure who bestowed this title or what it inspired or even how we indeed review it.   But a cursory glance at the news - local, nation or international you could easily conclude that nothing much has changed.   The world is still tired and frayed at the edges.  Good news still travels much slower than a sensational news headline.  And peace for so much of the earth is still...

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 I was particularly caught by a phrase this week in the old testament Lectionary text.  Isaiah speaks:  "Stop your meaningless offerings".I thought about meaningful offerings, life and worship.  The Incarnation of Jesus Christ - God in bodily form, God made flesh, is the most meaningful I could think of.  It makes sense of all others.In response I began to write down a prayer.  I started with the Jesus Prayer:Jesus Christ - Son of God - have mercy on...

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 As I read around the gospel text this week I ache for the Incarnation of Jesus Christ to be visible in my life, in our lives.  What is the Kingdom of God nurturing inside you?  What is God storing away and hoping for you in secret? Whatever it is, you can be sure it is good, productive and abundant because the Father is pleased to give it to you.Read the whole story in Luke 12:1-34.  Below is my...

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 In the gospel Lectionary this week, we see Jesus returning from prayer and answering the request, "teach us to pray". I wonder what we would receive if we risked the same request of Christ today? Read the whole story in Luke 11:1-13. I have especially enjoyed the The Message translation. Below is my meditative poem. Jesus, God-in-work-boots When do you ever stop teaching? When do you ever cease listening for our good? Give us faith in asking, persistence in...

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 This week the gospel Lectionary text comes from the end of Luke chapter 10. It is a rather clipped story of Jesus accepting hospitality at the home of Martha and her sister Mary. Often I am left wanting more information of what is actually going on in this scene. What is the significance of Luke's inclusion of this account? Why is there silence from the disciples, who are usually so quick to jump into such...

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 The story of the Good Samaritan is one of Jesus' best known parables. It has become part of the fabric of western culture. It is held up to celebrate high ideals of humanity, brotherhood, sisterhood and community.  Somehow though, we've stopped listening.  We've heard that one before.  We get it.  Thanks.I wonder then, might Jesus want to use such a story to show us something new of himself today.  With this in mind I revisit Luke 10....

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 The Lectionary gospel text this week is from Luke 10:1-11, 16-20.  In it we read that Jesus was making his way to Jerusalem. In the preceding chapter Luke describes Jesus' mood as resolute.  He then sends 70 of his followers ahead of him, with very specific instructions. As I drew some meditative sketches about this scene, I was struck Christ's care for his followers. He had discerned that the time was right, so deliberately and carefully he sent...

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 Over the past five weeks I have been writing somewhat of an extended book review of Henri Nouwen's 'The Return of the Prodigal Son - A Story of Homecoming'.  Through it I have explored the story Jesus told in Luke 15 and Rembrandt van Rijn's depiction of the story's human landscape. At the risk of spoiling Nouwen's conclusion, or worse, not being able to do it justice, I offer my own reflection on what I've...

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 The story of the return of the prodigal son uncovers the heart of God the Father. God finds us at the edge and draws us into the centre. We are pursued in the best possible way. Relentlessly. Inexhaustibly. This is the nature of the father's love for each of us. Yet we all question this love. We would do well to examine our internal questions from time to time. Consider the insight of Henri Nouwen...

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