Dear 'Prophetic Word-Bearer', There are many times in my life when I've pleaded with God for you to make an appearance with a 'word' for my situation. Just for clarification, I haven't been expecting any accompanying miracle or detailed roadmap. A quiet word of encouragement when in a crisis that I was 'doing the right thing' … Continue reading Has God given you a message for me?
'Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee.' Augustine of Hippo. I'm more than a little restless by nature, and satisfaction rarely finds a home amidst the torrent of questions in my mind. No sooner have I finished one project, one book, one task … Continue reading Finding a ‘good place to be’.
I selected my Christmas cards carefully this year, from a children's charity as usual. Modern, no excessive gold gilding, muted colours, with the perfect blend of Christmas 'country style' and a very acceptable nod to Christianity. They represent perfectly the dichotomy that is Christmas. There is, of course, that very appealing idea of a 'family … Continue reading An Extravagant Christmas.
The bad behaviour of some prominent men in our lives and times has made for depressing media headlines in recent weeks. It has been easy for these predators to operate in a world where 'sleazy' behaviour is tolerated and media, in general, portrays relationships as dispensible and responsibilities within relationships as so 'last century'. I've … Continue reading Masculinity in a world where men behave badly.
Psalm 145:4 “One generation commends your works to another; they tell of your mighty acts …” It's been a typical late October day here in Yorkshire, England: sunshine mixed with grey cloud, a little damp underfoot, and people have already started hunkering down in their homes ready for winter. Most gardens are looking weather-weary, and the storms last … Continue reading Our Shared Lives.
Autumn is a time of small pleasures: glowing sunsets; landscapes painted in colour; hot drinks with friends; crisp, cool, misty mornings. “Our lives are stories built of small moments. Ordinary experiences. It is too easy to forget that our days are adding up to something astonishing. We do not often stop to notice the signs … Continue reading A Day of Small Things.
It seems like, as Jesus said, in this world, we will always have trouble. Our lives will be punctuated with sorrow and discouragement, pain and fear. And for some, life offers fewer intervals between each onslaught. Chronicity is a word linked to so many medical disorders: anxiety, arthritis, diabetes, depression. No-one wants to hear it, … Continue reading When Discouraged.
We often played on the ‘street’ as children. There were not too many cars traversing the roads between rows of houses during my 1970’s childhood, and those that did were happy to wait patiently while we scattered from our games on the tarmac to the safety of the pavement. Our house was an ‘end of … Continue reading Sitting On The Wall.
"What gain has the worker from his toil? I have seen the business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man's heart." Ecclesiastes 3, 9-11. John Mason leans an arm on a concrete barn wall to … Continue reading Simplicity is a Beautiful and Precious Gift.
It's 5 am and I'm fully awake. Sun is streaming through the slatted beams of an ancient veranda, and the hum of life outside has already reached steady state. It's 1989 and I'm a third-year medical student from Glasgow on elective placement in a rural 'Mission Hospital', nestled deep amongst lush coconut plantations in the South … Continue reading Simplicity begins with a sunrise and ends with a sunset.