Facing 2017

Some folks are looking forward to 2017, determined to take to 2017 like a duck to water. I am not one of those people. I am looking forward to 2017, like a mother looks forward to taking a sugar-filled toddler onto a long train journey home. Like the mother, after a long arduous 2016, I…

Birth of Jesus – Facts or Truth?

According to Trevor Noah, 2016 was the year that facts died. He may be right. Certainly at this year’s end, many are ready to trumpet in the “post-truth” era. How does that relate to the story of Christmas though? The nativity is a debated topic. Whilst very few people doubt that Jesus was born and…

Star Spotting with Mary

Continuing to think about the stories we retell during Advent and Christmas, this week focussing on Mary’s ‘Magnificat’.  What does it mean for Mary to thank God for remembering His promise to Abraham and his descendants?  What does Abraham have to do with Jesus’s birth?  Well, let’s consider the story of Abram. Reflections on Genesis…

Trees at Christmas

Reflections on Isaiah 11:1-10 and Matthew 3:1-12 As I read these scriptures for Advent week 2, I was captivated by the tree imagery. Isaiah has Jesse’s tree trunk with new growth coming out of it, and the gospel reading has John the Baptist warning the Pharisees and Sadducees about trees and fruit, with God wielding…

Beginnings and Endings

Reflections on Genesis 1&2 and Matthew 24:36-44   Over advent, I’m reflecting on the Biblical stories that we have of God. What do these stories say about God? But also what do these stories say about us, about how we experience God? I started in the beginning. When God sets up a home for people, but…

Antelopes and Nets

I remember the first time I saw a dead deer strapped to a truck. It was deer hunting season – and folks have their reasons for hunting deer – but I was a kid.  The sight made me sad. Seeing such a beautiful, strong animal (possibly killed because of the size of its antlers) lying…

When Cancer keeps you awake

A prayer based on Psalm 77   “I cried out to God for help; I cried out to God to hear me. When I was in distress, I sought the Lord; at night I stretched out untiring hands, and I would not be comforted.”1   I can’t sleep, God. I keep thinking about Cancer. I…