Posted in Bishop of Grantham

Burn baby burn! (via Bishop Tim Ellis’s Weblog)

Burn baby burn! Who would have thought that a tiny church of some fifty adherents, tucked away in the west of the United States could create such a storm? And yet the ironically named Terry Jones (who shares his name with the much more intelligent and astute former Monty Python member, who helped create a similar international incident with their supposedly irreverent ‘Life of Brian’) has done just that: make it widely known that you are going to burn the most h … Read More

via Bishop Tim Ellis’s Weblog

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Posted in Book, film

The Ghost

Last night I went to the cinema to see ‘The Ghost’ having read the book, which was amazing.   The film is really worth going to see.  It’s a Roman Polanski version of Robert Harris’s book with Pierce Brosnan and Ewan McGregor playing the UK Prime Minister and a Ghost writer of a book that needs to be written about the Prime Ministers time in Office.  The Ghost stumbles upon something which puts his life in danger.  Who can you trust?  is a question that flows through the film.

Posted in Book, Humour

Cat Naps

I’ve been looking at a book called Cat Naps and It has some really good sayings in it (as well as pictures) …You try licking yourself all over – it’s a slow process – don’t rush me…or laziness is nothing more than the habit of retiring before you get tired…

Posted in Book, Church of England, Easter, Jesus, Lent, Life

Contemplating the cross

I’ve been following the book Contemplating the Cross a Pilgrimage of Prayer by Tricia McCary Rhodes.

Her Last chapter – epilogue is entitled Resurrection and starts with a quote by Dorothy L. Sayers…The Disciples had seen the strong hands of God twist the crown of thorns into a crown of glory, and in hands as strong as that they knew themselves safe…They had expected a walkover, and they beheld a victory; they had expected an earthly Messiah, and they beheld the Soul of Eternity.

Each daily prayer / section of the book has a reflection, read, respond, pray.  It is an amazing book to follow through lent or use with Lent groups – it is very good at making you think about how horrific the cross was and how lucky we are.

Posted in Book, Easter, Jesus, Lent, Life, Love, Poem

The Dream of Rood

Many years ago – the memory abides –
I was felled to the ground at the forest’s edge,
Severed from my roots.  Enemies seized me,
Made of me a mark of scorn for criminals to mount on;
Shoulder-high they carried me and set me on a hill.
Many foes made me fast there. Far off then I saw
The King of all mankind coming in great haste,
With courage keen, eager to climb me…
Then the young Hero – it was God almighty –
Strong and steadfast, stripped himself for battle;
He climbed up on high gallows, constant in his purpose,
Mounted it in sight of many, mankind to ransom.
Horror seized me when the Hero clasped me,
But I dared not bow or bend down to earth.
Nor falter, nor fall; firm I needs must stand.
I was raised up a Rood, a royal King I bore,
The High King of Heaven: hold firm I must.
They drove dark nails through me, the dire wounds still show,
Cruel, gaping gashes, yet I dared not give as good.
They taunted the two of us; I was wet with teeming blood,
Streaming from the warrior’s side when he sent forth his spirit.
High upon a hill helpless I suffered
Long hours of torment; I saw the Lord of hosts
Outstretched in agony; all embracing darkness
Covered with thick clouds the corpse of the World’s Ruler,
The bright day was darkened by a deep shadow,
All its colours clouded; the whole creation wept,
Keened for its King’s fall; Christ was on the Rood.
Yet warriors from afar eagerly came speeding
To where he hung alone. All this I beheld.
 

Anon., translated by Helen Gardner.

I took this from Signs of your kingdom by Michael Perham.

Posted in Book, Jesus, Life

The Gospel According to Starbucks

by Leonard Sweet

I really enjoyed this book – people who know me would say that I am a coffee addict…need I say more.

The book includes quotes like…A cup of coffee commits one to forty years of friendship or Coffee should be black as Hell, strong as death, and sweet as love…both Turkish Proverbs.

Questions under heading – Brewed for thought are threaded throughout the book.  For example: If you could get together with just one person from history for coffee and conversation (other than Jesus), whom would it be?  Why that person?

I wonder who it would be….I have a number of people in mind…Jane Austen and Mozart, are near the top of my list because I enjoy their work…….who would you pick?

This book opens the doors on God in a way that relates to us….especially if you are a coffee drinker…and how ‘Starbucks’ – (or any good coffee shop) and it’s atmosphere could be replicated in our journey of faith. 

It helps us to identify where God is and helps us to see that living with God is not something to be done out of duty or guilt but time given freely, a way of life.  We are invited to become living expressions of God.

I must say that this book does at times seem to dwell on Starbucks a little bit too much but overall it is a good read with insightful questions and if you love coffee an interesting way of relating faith and your favoutie cuppa together.

Posted in Humour, Jesus, Life, Love, Poem, Sketches

When I became a Christian

When I became a Christian I said, Lord, now fill me in,
Tell me what I’ll suffer in this world of shame and sin.
He said, your body may be killed, and left to rot and stink,
Do you still want to follow me? I said Amen – I think.
I think Amen, Amen I think, I think I say Amen,
I’m not completely sure, can you just run through that again?
You say my body may be killed and left to rot and stink,
Well, yes, that sounds terrific, Lord, I say Amen – I think.

But, Lord, there must be other ways to follow you, I said,
I really would prefer to end up dying in my bed.
Well, yes, he said, you could put up with the sneers and scorn and spit,
Do you still want to follow me? I said Amen – a bit.
A bit Amen, Amen a bit, a bit I say Amen,
I’m not entirely sure, can we just run through that again?
You say I could put up with sneers and also scorn and spit,
Well, yes, I’ve made my mind up, and I say, Amen – a bit.

Well I sat back and thought a while, then tried a different ploy,
Now, Lord, I said, the Good book says that Christians live in joy.
That’s true he said, you need the joy to bear the pain and sorrow,
So do you want to follow me, I said, Amen – tomorrow.
Tomorrow, Lord, I’ll say it then, that’s when I’ll say Amen,
I need to get it clear, can I just run through that again?
You say that I will need to joy, to bear the pain and sorrow,
Well, yes, I think I’ve got it straight, I’ll say Amen – tomorrow.

He said, Look, I’m not asking you to spend an hour with me
A quick salvation sandwich and a cup of sanctity,
The cost is you, not half of you, but every single bit,
Now tell me, will you follow me? I said Amen – I quit.
I’m very sorry Lord I said, I’d like to follow you,
But I don’t think religion is a manly thing to do.
He said forget religion then, and think about my Son,
And tell me if you’re man enough to do what he has done.

Are you man enough to see the need, and man enough to go,
Man enough to care for those whom no one wants to know,
Man enough to say the thing that people hate to hear,
To battle through Gethsemane in loneliness and fear.
And listen! Are you man enough to stand it at the end,
The moment of betrayal by the kisses of a friend,
Are you man enough to hold your tongue, and man enough to cry?
When nails break your body-are you man enough to die?
Man enough to take the pain, and wear it like a crown,
Man enough to love the world and turn it upside down,
Are you man enough to follow me, I ask you once again?
I said, Oh Lord, I’m frightened, but I also said Amen.
Amen, Amen, Amen, Amen; Amen, Amen, Amen,
I said, Oh Lord, I’m frightened, but I also said, Amen.

by Adrian Plass