Posts

HOPE Springs

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  H olding the hand of the O ne who saves, ... whose P ower defeated sin and grave, ... his E ternity breaks into our today, ... this HOPE does not disappoint.

Face to Face with Love

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Who would have thought twelve months ago, that seeing each other face to face at home this Christmas would have been such a treat and a challenge. A treat, as after nine months of social distancing, face to face meetings can no longer be taken for granted, and a challenge, because choosing who of our loved ones we ‘bubble’ with needs to be very carefully decided and planned. So how does a different and restricted Christmas affect how we see this year’s celebrations? Is it time to be more focused on celebrating those we love than rushing around buying a glut of gifts and food, especially if your income has been negatively affected this year? Or are the gifts and feasts even more special in a year when other celebrations have been put on hold? In a year that we’ve come starkly face to face with our own mortality and that of those we care about, perhaps Christmas is a time to celebrate life and life in all its fullness, well, as much as regulations will allow. The good news of course i

Comfort & Joy

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OK.  I admit it.  This second lockdown has been getting me down.  I’m weary and fed up, despite my attempts to try and look for the positive in the current situation.  I’ve felt like this before of course.  Life isn’t always a bed of roses, even with faith, hope and love, but I just need to break out of this new normal.  Unfortunately, I can’t.  Just like everyone else, I have to be mindful of the risk, aware of the restrictions, and careful to do the right thing. So how do I maintain comfort and joy in a season in which comfort and joy is often a theme.  Well, there are ways, but last week I was prompted to remember another time when I was feeling grumpy.  At that time I was inspired by a book.  It wasn’t a classic but when I saw it on the shelf, it stopped me in my tracks. I don’t consider myself a grumpy person generally but the words on the cover of this book spoke to my heart about my negative attitude.  So, 3 years ago, I started regularly writing the blessings of each day or wee

Hope for Christmas

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Christmas is coming.  The lights, adverts, and darker nights are all signs it’s on its way.  I wonder what you are hoping for this Christmas? We might feel that 2020 has felt, at times, like the end of the world, and I’m sure there are no end of apocalyptic predictions being bandied about, but whatever the circumstances, we can still have hope. This isn’t the sort of hope that comes from wishful thinking and pipe dreams. This is a more certain and confident hope. A hope that comes from belief in something that brings life, something beyond the current circumstances of uncertainty. As we travel through advent towards Christmas, we may press our faces against car windows looking for sparkling Christmas lights instead of the sparkling sea. As the destination of Christmas Day gets nearer and nearer, maybe we might pause to remember the reason for the season - the birth of a baby, Jesus, the Christ, Our Saviour, Mighty Counsellor, Prince of Peace, God from heaven on earth, one of us. H

Doing good

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I’ve recently been reflecting on persistently, constantly and patiently doing good.  We’ve seen so much of people doing good over recent months.  Whether it’s the many people who have volunteered for Community Hubs picking up shopping or prescriptions, or businesses stepping in to provide children’s lunches over half term, or Joe Wicks (and others) offering their skills free of charge during lockdown to keep the nation fit and well in body, soul and spirit.   But, it’s hard to always keep doing good.  Whilst we maybe able to be good in one area of our lives, there are often other areas where we are less than good, maybe a lack of patience within our own families, frustration with the authorities, struggling to persistently choose to eat healthily and exercise, or just being plain sick and tired of the daily grind. Persisting in doing good requires a striving and a seeking from within to do so.  It takes effort and choice.  Constantly doing good requires us to stand firm, not being sway

What’s your Story? | War Baby part 3 - Go

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In this final part of my Mum’s reminisces from her childhood, she shares how she was evacuated with her Mum and brother and how they survived a near miss from a doodlebug. In this case it was drastic circumstances that led to their leaving their home, albeit temporarily.  There can be many different reasons for leaving the familiar and striking out into the unknown; war, work, adventure or maybe even a Godly command.  God told Abram ‘Go from your country, your people and your Father’s household.‘ (Genesis 12:1).  Abram didn’t know where he was going, but he did have God’s promise of blessing for him and his future.  Sometimes God calls us to ‘Go’.  We don’t always know where we will end up or who we will end up with but if we trust God, he will show us the way and bless our faith in his promises.   In about 1943, it was decided that although Kingston was relatively unscathed, it was prone to random bombs as the Luftwaffe were returning from their raids, so we were to be evacuated to so