Showing posts from March, 2013

Don't miss Maundy mysteries!

If you are somewhere in the world which follows the Western church calendar, then today is Maundy Thursday! Maundy : The day before the much more celebrated Good Friday, the last day of the working week, the day we can't wait to get through in order to finally reach the holiday weekend!

Traditionally, Maundy celebrated the last Supper that Jesus enjoyed with his disciples. In some circles it carries other names, my favourite, 'Thursday of Mysteries.'It sounds like a day spent watching back to back Scooby Doo cartoons!
The word Maundy, an evolved Anglicisation of the old French Mande - Command. 'A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another as I have loved you' John 13.34

Saying these words, Jesus, the leader and champion, took a towel and began to wash the feet of his friends and his betrayer. What a shocking and uncomfortable way to demonstrate your love as service. Bending, humbling, assuming the position and role of a servant. A lowly servant at that,…

Looking for theology behind the chair!

St Augustine's chair, destroyed in the Reformation, now pieced lovingly back together for each enthronement of a new Archbishop of Canterbury. Today, placed up near the altar table, behind the screen which separates the congregation from the main players and the action.

The Reformation should have seen the screens destroyed with the chair. What is this idea that there are parts of a building that are holy, parts of religion that are just for a select few, special places where God dwells and where the many cannot enter? Don't we remember as Holy Week 2013 begins that Jesus tore the screen down, ripped apart the giant curtain in the original temple which separated man and God? Didn't he open the way for all of us who believe to follow him boldly into the Father's holy house, and back out into the fallen world, still shining with his holiness? The great hope of the gospel is that there is no sacred/secular space, no where where God's people can't be or that God hi…

Waiting for the white smoke of intimacy.

The world's media is camped out in a damp St Peter's square waiting for white smoke that tells us 115 select men have heard God speak on behalf of millions. These are moments of high drama and intrigue, but what if God intended that all of us could hear his voice and know his plans?

Way back when, Moses groaned at the needs around him, wishing that all God's people were prophets- he might finally get some peace! What Moses hoped for is now open to all of us. It used to be the chosen just few, on behalf of the many. Even after Jesus ascended, his anxious disciples drew lots to find a replacement for Judas - shifting the burden of hearing God away from nervous men and onto the luck of the draw, knowing a gracious God would work this way on behalf of weak people who couldn't fathom his heart.

Everything changed at Pentecost. Never again would true believers need to draw lots or hedge their bets. Suddenly, full of the Spirit of God,they were able to make decisions as though…

In praise of cunning women and a roguish God!

Like it or not, there seem to be some aspects of God's character that are seen more clearly in women than in men. If Genesis 1 is right and the male and female of the species are both made in the image of God Himself, then I guess this statement shouldn't surprise us.It's just possible that the Creator God buried his rich character deep into the psyche and personality of men and women. Whilst both sexes point to who He is, men and women individually are capable of showing a unique insight to aspects of God's ways and worth.

This is never more apparent than in the little studied subject of cunning!
Shrewdness, guile or subtle thinking, prudence and wisdom. These are not uniquely female traits, but the girls are definitely in charge in the cunning department!

Think about the mother of baby Moses, commanded to throw her baby in the river. She obeyed to a degree, but only after placing him carefully with prayer and hope into a pitch lined basket, and sending her older daugh…