Saturday, 17 April 2021

Unlock With a Healing Retreat


So we're finally unlocking!

In the dark days of lockdown you may have longed for this moment. But I wonder how you feel about it now? Whatever your answer is to that question, that's fine. As someone wisely said, we've all been in the same storm but we've not all been in the same boat.

One thing that is clear, however, is that the pandemic has taken its toll - on all of us. And most of us are more tired than we perhaps acknowledge. There will be wisdom in emerging gently, rather than at a run; taking time to acknowledge our losses and notice how the past year has changed us. And then placing all our cares and wounds, our hopes and longings into the healing hands of God.


There's no better way to do that than resting in a peaceful place and soaking in God's healing love.

So why not join me on a restorative 'Resting with the Healer' retreat in the beautiful and nurturing environment of Penhurst Retreat Centre. There are still a few places left and you can find more details on their website.

I'd love to have your company.

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Wednesday, 9 December 2020

A Prayer for Christmas 2020


This is a Christmas season like no other.  One in which huge struggles exist beneath the glittering veneer of lights and tinsel.  One in which there is immense heartache and pain below the cheery sounds of Christmas music. A Christmas where the longing to meet family is coloured with absences and anxieties.  And one in which many secretly weep behind close doors. It's a Christmas of brave faces and broken hearts. But also a season of love and kindness. A time of hope amidst the losses of this year. A time to help each other through.

I offer this prayer, with deepest love.

Please feel free to share it with anyone who might be helped by it.

 

May you have a blessed 

and restorative 

Christmas.

 

May you find

a million things to give thanks for

in the midst of dreams and plans disrupted.

 

May you stay safe

and keep others safe too.

 

Where there is loneliness 

may unexpected friendship 

come to cheer your heart.

 

May peace

wash over your anxieties.

 

Where there is sadness

may Christ come to comfort you

and the loving arms of God

enfold you.

 

In the depths of loss and grief

may you be gentle with yourself

and let kindness 

begin to heal you.

 

May your needs be met

and the hope of a brighter future

root itself within your heart.

 

When you need energy

may you be given it,

when you need rest

may you find it.

 

And when you long for bright hints of joy

may they rise up to greet you

like the bubbling laughter of children

or the wonder of sparkling diamonds 

in the snow.

 

May Christmas bless you and restore you

and give you the deepest peace

for all that is yet to be.

  

Amen                      

Friday, 30 October 2020

Seeds of hope

Sometimes the smallest things can lift our spirits can't they.  A small packet of hollyhock seeds did that for me yesterday.  In the midst of a whirl of bad news this small gift from a friend gave me hope of a brighter Spring.  

 As we head once more into lonely and uncertain times, we all need each other.  As we face our losses and tentatively hold onto our hopes, we need the reassurance of knowing ourselves loved and supported.  Above all, we need to feel safe.  We need to know that one day, as Julian of Norwich said, 'all will be well'.

A little poem of mine has travelled the globe since I printed it on the front of my notecards.  Many people tell me of the comfort these words have brought to people.




Giving priceless encouragement, at 75p each, these little cards can lift someone's spirits, give them hope of a brighter Spring, and reassure them they are loved and prayed for.  They come in two styles and can be ordered here. 

I'd love to send you some.  

In these dark and dismal times let's scatter seeds of hope and love.

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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.

.

 

 


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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