Thursday, 21 February 2019

Pivotal Moment

'Sacrifice' by Lindsey Attwood
            I've got
            the strongest feeling
            in my bones
            that this
            is a pivotal moment in history
                                  ...   ...
                                           Extract from 'Insight'


We're generally only aware of pivotal moments, moments in the past which made a significant difference to the future, after the event.  Jesus' death on the cross was surely the supreme pivotal moment, the 'hinge point of history', as Max Lucado describes it.  It was the event which brought fulfilment to Jesus's words that he had come to "set the people free" (Luke 4:18) - by enabling them to be forgiven from all that crippled them; guilt, remorse, shame, everything!

What a gift!  What a pivotal moment!  
the bright hot glow of flaming torches
fuelling the atmosphere of tension
but, the agony of the earlier Gethsemane moments
Jesus reflected
only calm acceptance:
his coming death
his very reason for living.               Extract from 'Arrest'

Jesus struggled with his calling at Gethsemane (and who wouldn't have done?) but he ultimately faced the cross with calm acceptance.  But how hard it can be for us to accept what Jesus has done for us - and to live into the freedom of forgiveness and new life.

How pivotal Calvary is for our own lives depends to a large extent on how deeply we allow ourselves to engage with the reality of all that it involved.  Imagining ourselves inside the story, as if we were actually there, can be extremely powerful and the meditations in 'The Gift of a Cross' could act as a springboard to help you to do that.  If you haven't picked up a copy yet, it's available here.  I've reduced the price to £3.50 because I'd love you to be blessed by it.

Thursday, 14 February 2019

Special Offer for Lent

Are you  ...  wondering how to journey prayerfully through Lent?  ...  hoping to have a fresh look at the Easter story?  ...  wondering what it was like to be there, alongside Jesus, in those days leading up to his death?  ...  looking for new resources for this Eastertide?  ...   wanting to buy someone a meaningful Easter gift?
Look no further.
I'm pleased to make available my Easter book, The Gift of a Cross, at half the usual price and with free postage.
It's available here at the special knock-down price of £3.50.
Here's a taste of the contents ...
                   And heaven
                   held its breath.
                   A living, human cross
                   hung heavy
                   at the still, mute
                   turning-point of history
                                           ...   ...
                                           Extract from 'And Heaven Held Its Breath'
Where else can you buy seventy meditations for not much more than the price of a cup of coffee?
Go on  ...  treat yourself this Easter!

Saturday, 9 February 2019

Intentional Engagement

Is it just me, or does clock time seem to speed up as we get older?  How quickly we seem to move from Christmas to Easter.  We have barely recycled the tree and tidied up the decorations before the Easter eggs are on the supermarket shelves.  And it can feel like that too in our Christian calendar.  A passage of time which took 33 years in Jesus' lifetime compresses itself into a few short months in our annual celebrations and reminders of His life.

That's why Lent can be so significant.  Initially conceived as a period of fasting prior to Easter, echoing Jesus time in the wilderness, this 40 days of reflection is an important opportunity to engage deeply with Christ's passion.  Without it, we're in danger of leaping joyously into the new life of the empty tomb without fully embracing the sacrifice and the cost of the cross.

It's about much more than giving up chocolate.  It can be a life-giving time.  Instead of asking 'what are you giving up for Lent?', perhaps a better question would be 'what are you intentionally adding in for Lent?'.  
I'm giving away my book, The Gift of a Cross, at half price - a snip at £3.50, and I'll even pay the postage for you.  Why not get yourself a copy and use it as a companion on your Lenten journey?  You can buy it here.

Easter's coming; let's prepare for it deeply.