Category: Wide margin

… and consider the long suffering of our Lord

“Do not weep. Behold the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David has prevailed

Reading through the Gospels, I am always impressed by the dignity and strength of the Lord Jesus in the many situations He found himself in. Jesus did not go out of His way to find trouble. Trouble found Him! On one occasion the people of His home town of Nazareth were ready to throw Him over a cliff! (Luke 4:29) other times, other places, some were ready to stone Him. He never backed down, somehow our Lord walked away – He didn’t run, He walked away until that night in Gethsemane’s Garden when He gave Himself up into the hands of His enemies. The Lamb of God gave Himself up as a ransom for many.

In Peter’s second letter, we are urged to keep faith with our Lord, not to be afraid, not to turn away from following Jesus, and keeping the commandments of God, to be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless.

“And consider that the long-suffering of our Lord is salvation” (2 Peter 3:15)

In myself I am far from patient. I don’t find it easy ‘not to be angry‘ with some of the things which happen in the world. Stories of cruelty and abuse make me so angry, but then I remind myself that my Lord Himself said “Woe to those by whom offences come,” Remember, “it would better for him if a millstone were hung about his neck and he were thrown into the sea, than that He should offend one of these little ones.” (Luke 17. 2). So often I am offended, cruelty, abuse of any kind, the betrayal of trust, foul language. Don’t those things just make us want to shout out!

And into just such a world as this the Lion of Judah, the Root of David came … He to who all judgement is given (shouldn’t we just quake in our boots, a little at that?) He lived amongst us, quiet, gentle as a lamb, wise as the serpents He trod underfoot every day, harmless as a dove.

I love this photo of a Magnificent Lion quietly taking his ease, look at what his naughty daughter, baby lioness is up to! Now who would dare to chew a lion’s tail? The Lion of Judah is symbolic of the mighty strength of God, I marvel just marvel at His patience, His long-suffering…. but know one day the books will be opened.

Revelation 5. Verses 2, 4,-6, 9 (NKJV)

“And I saw in the right hand of Him who sat on the throne, a scroll written inside and on the back sealed with seven seals.

I wept much, because no one was found worthy to open and read the scroll, or to look at it.

But one if the elders said to me, “Do not weep, “Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the root of David has prevailed to open the scroll and to loose its seven seals.”

And. I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne and of the four Living creatures, and in the midst of the elders stood a Lamb as though it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent out into all the earth.

And they sang a new sing, saying:

You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals;

For you were slain, and have redeemed us to God be Your Blood”

Amen.

Tamed Garden versus Wild Wood

The garden has its seasons. Many autumns ago, the Briar Rose was planted. A bare root; so bare I wondered if it would survive the frosts, ice and snow of winter.

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But it did producing that first spring time its small white flowers and delicate perfume and then as summer progressed Rose Hips to provide food for my friends the birds and for me colour on a grey, wintry day, the stems of my Briar Rose stay vividly green throughout winter

So, with the garden of my soul, I want to choose well what I sow and plant, to ensure I produce good fruit in all seasons:

Love, Joy, Peace, Forbearance, kindness, goodness,
Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self-control
(Galatians 5:22 N.I.V)

But, you know what, as with my garden, the weeds and wild things get in, they blow in on the wind, under the fence, over the fence, by every means fair and foul, from the wild wood surrounding my soul garden, they leave me no choice, these things which I didn’t want but to set to with tools called watchfulness and prayer. Life in the wild wood called the world, is wild, rough, tough, dangerous and threatening to my soul’s garden, yet sometimes, just sometimes I feel sorry for the wild wood because it is in need of of the Forester’s care and attention and perhaps, just perhaps mine?

How can the wild wood, the wild things of our wonderful, exciting times be changed?

Saviour Christ,
In whose way of love
Lies the secret
Of all life,
And the hope of all people,
We pray for quiet courage to match
This hour.
We did not choose to be born
Or to
Live in such an age:
But let its problems challenge us,
It’s discoveries exhilarate us,
Its injustices anger us,
Its possibilities inspire us
And its vigour renew us
For your kingdom’s sake.
Amen

(Prayer from a prayer card created for the Lambeth Conference 1998)

And Jesus said:
“Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you”
(Luke 10:19)

The Thief Who Stole My Heart Away

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Why did it have to be a friend
Who chose to betray the Lord?
And why did He use a kiss to show them
That’s not what a kiss is for?
Only a friend can betray a friend,
A stranger has nothing to gain,
And only a friend comes close enough
To ever cause so much pain.

And why did there have to be a
Thorny crown pressed upon His head?
It should have been a royal one,
Made of jewels and gold instead.
It had to be a crown of thorns
Because in this life that we live,
For all who would seek to love
A thorn is all this world has to give.

And why did it have to be
A heavy cross He was made to beat?
And why did they nail His feet and hands?
His love would have held Him there.
It was on a cross, for on a cross
A thief was supposed to pay,
And Jesus had come into this world
To steal every heart away.
Yes Jesus had come into this world
To steal every heart away.
(Michael Cord)

Jesus said,

“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. I and my Father are one.”
(John14: 27-30)

So. I guess, this it is true,my Holy Thief and His Father had the job planned a long time.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him in love.”
(Ephesians 1: 3-4) ESV

Shared with in love and gratitude by a stolen, Holy artefact.

The Ocean Less Explored

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You must go and find out.
You must go and discover whether there is anything
In that world for you.
Promise me that you will go.
(Andrew Harvey, A Journey in Ladakh

The name, ‘Tides and Tidings’ was born from the pages within a journal
Like so many, from the beginning of my adventure with God, I have kept a simple diary, keeping safe the many blessings, memories of things done and said together. Ah yes, a simple soul and the Lord
do and say things together. Like faithful marriage partners of many years we have been together a long, long, time the Lord and I. Looking back through the years, reading in my journals, I have at times been, to say the least, not the best of ‘partners’ often misunderstanding, often downright petulant and quarrelsome. Yet, my most patient of Teachers has persevered and perseveres, always giving, always loving, always waiting for me to catch up with Him. He leads, I follow.

‘Rule a wide margin’ He said.

And within that wide margin are recorded all the fresh new insights given, over the years, when praying … a wide margin, full of faithful, patient guidance, words of encouragement, love.

Years before the first issue of ‘Tides and Tidings’ I was pondering over these words, from Pilgrim and Dom Helder Camara

When your ship,
Being moored in harbour,
Gives the illusion of being a house,
When your ship begins to put down roots
In the stagnant water by the Quay,
Put out to sea!
Save your boat’s journeying soul
And your own pilgrim soul,
Cost what it may

And, I realised that I was called to sail the Ocean Less Explored, an Ocean known to many as prayer, I am still sailing, still discovering.

Did the Lord say, “Promise me you will go”

Well not quite, He said, “Promise me, we will go together.”

May the Lord bless all your ‘comings in and going out’