Wednesday, 29 July 2020

Healing through Imaginative Prayer - Special Offer

Have you ever experienced imaginative prayer?

It can be a deeply special way to pray, bringing the biblical text alive and enabling you to connect the gospel story with your own personal situation.  And it can be a very powerful way to encounter Jesus and to find healing.

My Pathways to Healing CD series aims to help you do just that.   I've had some stunning feedback.

To get a taste of the series, why not take a pause and listen to this short presentation.

And if you like what you hear, my CDs are now on special offer during the pandemic - only £10 for 2 CDs - two CDs for the price of one!    




The beautiful artwork in the above presentation is by the very gifted Jeremy Thomas and is one of thirty stunning paintings in his project, 'The Human One', telling the story of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. The project is being developed at Saint Mary's Priory, Abergavenny, where Jeremy is currently Artist in Residence. On completion of the project the exhibition will go on tour around the UK.   

You can view and purchase Jeremy's artwork at -https://www.jeremythomasart.co.uk/

And you can purchase the special offer Pathways to Healing CDs here

Do please support us in our respective ministries.

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Monday, 13 July 2020

In awe of nature

I wonder what it is that sustains you through these difficult days, as we tentatively ease out of lockdown?  For me, there are two things: prayer and spending time in the natural world.  I love observing the bird life at my local lake.  And I always find that time in nature leads me further into prayer.  

In my morning devotional today, I read:

People only have to look at the creation around them to know that an invisible hand has brought into being all they can see.
Romans 1.20 (The Truth translation)

and Psalm 104, in the Message, speaks of  "a wildly wonderful world".

How true these two verses are for me. 

Here's my reflection on Psalm 104, from ‘Dwelling in the Psalms':

The natural world is beautifully designed. It has a phenomenal order and interconnectedness to it. Not only is there immense variety and beauty, but each creature, plant and micro climate has its place and purpose in the grand whole. Science is still only chipping away at the edges of comprehending how remarkable the created world truly is.

 This psalm is a veritable litany of praise to God’s truly fascinating and breath-taking design. Even with the simple understanding of his time, before the advancement of science was to discover so much more and before technology would enable knowledge to be so widely shared, the psalmist understands that only God could establish such incredible variety, order and provision. And his response is one of worship: ‘Let all that I am praise the Lord.’

 
Spending time in nature is a very healing thing to do, especially when times are difficult.  Why not try and take a close look at nature today, whether it's a wide vista of rolling countryside, or a close up view of the intricacy of a flower.  Take time to stand and stare, appreciate the beauty and let wonder quieten all your other concerns, if only for a moment.

Then maybe you might like to join me in praying this prayer:

God of Glory, 

thank you 

for the wonder of your world 

and for my place within it.

I praise you 

for its beauty and diversity;

for the remarkable way 

in which all things 

have their significance.

I praise you

for the birds and animals,

for all that swims,

and for tiny insects 

which pollinate the plants.

For flowers and trees 

and plants of every kind, 

I praise you.

For the rich 

topography of the earth 

and the rhythm of the seasons,

I thank you.

 

May I never 

lose my sense of amazement

at the beauty of your world:

creation 

reflects your glory.

 

With every ounce of my breath

I praise you.

Amen




"Dwelling in the Psalms" has lots more reflections and prayers like this, in fact it covers all 150 of the psalms.

It's available from my webshop, or from all good Christian bookshops and, of course, from Amazon.

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Sunday, 17 May 2020

More 'Prayerful Moments'

Increasingly aware of the many struggles people are facing during this pandemic, I have been developing some more simple meditations to help people through.

As I anticipate that the series may continue to grow, these meditations now have their own web page which you can access through the link on the top right of this page.

I pray that these new resources will help you in some small way.

Please help others too by sharing this information widely.                    Thank you.

Saturday, 2 May 2020

Prayerful Moments in the pandemic

These are not easy times, are they?

As part of my personal response to the current crisis, I have begun to develop some simple prayerful meditations which can be found here, on YouTube and on Facebook.  Each is about 15 minutes long.  My hope is that these will provide opportunities for others to find peace in their anxieties and to calm and strengthen themselves with prayer.

If God leads me in this project, this may become a series.

The first in the series is here  ...




I'm also thrilled to discover that my new book gets a mention on YouTube too!

Nicky Hazley, from Comber Methodist church, in Ireland, has created a lovely prayer reflection based on 'Dwelling in the Psalms'.

This is also well worth exploring  ...




Peace be with you all.

Go safely through these times.

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Monday, 30 March 2020

Find calm with a FREE CD


Feeling overwhelmed?

A growing death toll, the constant bombardment of bad news, the growing restrictions on our lives, isolation from family and friends, fears for our health and our livelihoods, the lack of any sense of 'normality'; all these impact us hugely.  They have the potential to send our minds into a swirling storm.

Image: Ken Walters
Apart from staying at home and washing our hands, 
one of the most important things we can do is quieten that storm; bring peace to our fears and anxieties.

'Calming the Storm' is a CD which will help you to do that.


And as my contribution towards helping you get through, 
I'm now making it available for FREE during this pandemic.


Here's what others are saying about it -

Thank you for releasing 'Calming the Storm' at this very difficult and disturbing time.  I am now filled with an amazing sense of peace.
Caryl

I cannot adequately express how deeply moved I was by this CD.  It speaks so powerfully into this very time and I know I will listen to it many times.
Liz

This is so relevant to our coronavirus situation. 
I have used it to achieve calm and restfulness when unable to sleep.
Barbara
Definitely a CD for 'such a time as this'.
Joanne

And now it can be yours.  ...   for free!

Image: Jenny Hawke
Based on Jesus calming the storm on Galilee, it combines narrative poetry and guided meditation with prayerful questioning, sound effects and relaxing ambient music. It will help you to find peace in your own inner storms, whatever they are.  Your storm can become a prayer experience and that prayer can calm your anxieties.

This is for anyone.  It matters not if you believe in Jesus.  He believes in you!  And this can help.  It's normally £9.99 and right now, as a small contribution to the global efforts against coronavirus, I'm giving it away for free.

What have you got to lose?

Just email me your address, or the address of someone you'd like me to send it to; let me know how many give-away copies you'd like, and I'll send them on their way.  I'll even include a pre-stamped envelope for you to post a CD onward if it's not for yourself.

If you're able to make a donation towards the postage, it would help me, but it's not essential.

                           


Email me now at  pat@patmarsh.co.uk   I'm looking forward to hearing from you.  

I'd love it if this CD could help people get peacefully through this time.

Stay safe   ...   Stay well.  ...   Stay calm.   

We can get through this!

Sunday, 15 March 2020

Calming the Storm - A new CD!





"A wonderful CD series!  
Touching our deepest fears and hurts
with the peace and presence of Christ."

A beautiful endorsement from
Pam Rhodes


How calm are you right now?

As coronavirus sweeps its way across the world, there are many fears around: fears of sickness, fears of shortages, isolation and disruption, fears of financial struggles, fears of death; and fears of how we will cope with all this.

Many are experiencing significant inner turmoil at the moment, trying to 'keep calm and carry on' in spite of their hidden storms, which may of course have their roots in other personal problems too.

How might we find peace for our swirling emotions, fears and anxieties?   

'Calming the Storm' is the next CD in the Pathways to Healing series - and I'm thrilled to announce that it's released today!  


Based on Jesus calming the storm on Galilee, it combines narrative poetry and guided meditation with prayerful questioning, sound effects and relaxing ambient music. It will help you to find peace in your own inner storms, whatever they are.  Immerse yourself in this and you'll find yourself there in the boat with Jesus; hearing the thunder, feeling the gale, pitching and tossing with the waves and experiencing the difference when Jesus brings his authority to the storm and says, "Peace. Be still."  

Your storm can become a prayer experience and that prayer can calm your anxieties.

Oh. ...  and I did I say?  ... there are two beautiful Margaret Rizza tracks on this CD too.

It's available from my web shop.  Look out for the special offer too if you want to buy both CDs in the series.

Maybe you could make a gift of it to someone who could use a little inner peace.   It's a great resource for individuals, small groups and churches.

Why not order it now, before you forget? 
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Saturday, 22 February 2020

Encountering Jesus


How radical are you prepared to be to meet with Jesus?  Would you dig through a roof, for instance?  Four people did that for their friend and the result was a remarkable healing and a life-changing forgiveness. (Mark 2.1-12)

Every healing in the bible involves an encounter with Jesus, the Jesus who still heals today.  But how do we intentionally encounter him?

One way is through meditating with scripture and placing ourselves within the story.  It's not always easy to do on our own, but the Pathways to Healing series of CDs is designed to help you do just that.

Some lovely things have been about this series:


Pat's profoundly thoughtful and prayerful re-telling of familiar scripture stories and her very sensitively guided meditations take us to a place deeper than the intellect alone can reach.
Let her take you on a unique and powerful journey of discovery and into a healing encounter with the living Christ.
Margaret Silf, Author & Retreat Leader

Thank you for your far-reaching ministry.
This CD enabled me to find healing from something that for a long time had 'paralysed' me.
Lesley McCririe, Spiritual Director & Retreat Leader


Why not try this for yourself?  Or buy a copy for someone you know?

Prior to the launch of the next CD in the series, 
I'm offering the 1st CD, 'Take Up Your Mat', at the discounted price of £8.

It's available at my web-shop and on Amazon.    I look forward to sending it to you.

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Thursday, 20 February 2020

Perfect for Lent


Many thanks to Judy Cannan, Spiritual Director & retreat leader, for this beautiful review of 'Dwelling in the Psalms':

It is with delight that I heard that Pat had written a book 'Dwelling in the Psalms' and I couldn't wait to get my copy.  Getting hold of a copy was an easy process and the book has since proved a treasure trove.  It combines just enough of the traditional psalm with her own psalm/poem response plus a short reflection and prayer. It would be perfect for a journey through Lent or as material for a guided retreat, or just for our own personal prayer time.  I recently gave it to one of my regular 'directees' who was blown away by its relevance to her on her own life journey. This is a valuable resource.


Do you know of anyone who's looking for devotional inspiration through Lent?

It's available in all the usual places.


Wednesday, 12 February 2020

Thanks after struggle - Psalm 18


I recently had a spectacular, painful fall.  I was at the bottom of a garden, behind a rockery, well out of sight of any neighbours.  Fortunately, I didn't break any bones, but I hurt almost everything else it was possible to hurt; knees, arms, back, head, neck, shoulders and a good many body parts I'd never been aware of before.  And because I'm still rebuilding after knee surgery, I simply couldn't get up.  I knew that absolutely no one would be able to see or hear me, or even know that I was there.  So the only way I could get myself back to safety was to crawl, inch by painful inch, back to the house, negotiating rocks, paths and steps on the way.  And once there, I collapsed and eventually found the strength to inch my way to the phone to ring for help.  It took me two hours and was one of the most painful and totally exhausting things I've ever had to face.  It was a monumental task and I couldn't have done it without continually crying out to God in prayer.

In the following few days, I was unable stop giving thanks!  I gave thanks that I didn't fracture anything, that I didn't knock myself out, that I wasn’t still lying in the undergrowth with hypothermia, that two friends finally arrived and lifted me into a chair, that I was safe and warm, and recovering.

And all this reminds me of my words on Psalm 18, in "Dwelling in the Psalms" ...

A contemporary interpretation of the psalm ...


Taste and see:
the Lord protects
those who call on him;
he is close to the broken-hearted,
sends his angels
on a rescue mission,
delivers them
from their troubles,
lifts their downcast hearts,
ensures that they lack
no good thing.

Turn to the Lord
with your lips
and your lives.

Fear not:
he is close,
very close.

And my devotional reflection ...

This is a psalm of exhortation, borne out of experience: ‘I sought the Lord, and he answered me’. Building on the memory of answered prayers, ‘tasting’ God’s response in times past, gives the writer of this psalm confidence to have faith in the goodness of God for today. The Lord has rescued him before and will do so again.

If we honour God with right living, when we depend on him and praise him in our darkest hours we will know his protection and strength. We will taste and see that the Lord is on our side.


For more reflections like this, with the addition of prayers for all 150 psalms, why not pick up a copy of Dwelling in the Psalms?

It's available through Amazon, online here and from all good Christian bookshops.

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Wednesday, 5 February 2020

Growing Deeply


It was Dietrich Bonhoeffer who said, 

"The more deeply we grow into the psalms and the more often we pray them as our own, the more simple and rich will our prayer become.”

This has been my own experience as I prayed my way through all 150 psalms.  The result is my latest book, "Dwelling in the Psalms".  How often do you pray the psalms "as your own"?  Not always easy, is it?  How often do the words of them feel relevant to your own individual situation; right now, today?  What would it be like to write them as if they'd come from your heart; as if they echoed your experience, gave words to your struggles?

Giving my own contemporary voice to the ancient texts enabled me to really make the psalms my own.  And, if you haven't come across the book yet, maybe my thoughts can help you do the same.  
But don't take my word for it.  Here's what others are saying -

A book to ponder and savour, perfect for personal devotions.
Sheridan Voysey

A wonderful book.
Pat Marsh's poetic gift is extraordinary and not a word is wasted.
Penny Bird

Available on Amazon, on my shop page and in all good Christian bookshops, it's selling fast and is well worth a look!  
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Tuesday, 7 January 2020

By another route


January 6th 2020.  Children are going back to school.  Adults are returning to work.  The festive crib is being returned to the attic. Everywhere I've been today, I've heard the phrase 'back to normal', usually preceded by the words, 'it's good to be ...'.

This is Epiphany; the time when the church remembers the visit of the wise men, which, culturally, we often fast forward into our Christmas celebrations. Like countless other children across the land, my grandson, wearing a makeshift crown, carried his precious gold to the crib. Our nativity plays are a much loved part of the season and an important way of bringing the story alive for the youngsters. Rarely enacted though is the place of Herod in the story. Threatened by the news of the birth of a new 'king', he had asked the magi to return to him and tell him exactly where they found the baby Jesus.  

But they didn't.  Instead, warned against this in a dream (because Herod wanted to kill Jesus), they returned home by a new way.  

We thrive on rhythms.  And the different rhythms of Christmas are very disruptive. But let's not forget that Jesus is pretty disruptive too: an encounter with him changes us.  And if we return 'back to normal' too eagerly, maybe we've missed something fundamentally important.  

At the turning of the year, it's worth taking time to ponder:

In what new way might we be being called to carry the presence of Jesus into 2020?

Might God be prompting us to 'return to normal' by a 'new route'?


Happy pondering ... and my best wishes to you all for your journeying with Jesus in this coming year.