Sunday, 9 November 2014

I come in simplicity

Sometimes I find that it is the simple things that draw me near to God. An early morning walk in the garden, the slightly chill and damp grass tickling and refreshing my feet. The feel of the sun on my face in winter. The constancy of the breaking of the waves on the sea. A baby's giggle. A moment of quiet in the midst of the busy supermarket.

Psalm 136 makes me think of this with it's constantly-repeating 'His love endures forever.' Like the sun that rises each day and the wave upon wave of the ocean, God's love never fails.

So today I will come in simplicity and allow the waves of His loving-kindness to wash over me again and again.

And it will be enough.

What simple things draw you near to God? Can you slow down and be quiet a bit today and enjoy them a little more?

Sunday, 26 October 2014

The Good Life 4

Another talk at Global Leadership Summit was by Louie Giglio. His talk was incredibly vulnerable and moving and reminded me of moments in my life when I had longed for heaven and the safe arms of Jesus. He spoke about cultivating the knowledge that life is short.

This reminded me of something that I had read by Eugene Peterson in his book, The Wisdom of Each Other. He writes:
How distorted our imaginations become if we forget, even for a day or so, that we are going to die. Amnesia regarding death soon develops into illusions regarding life....The old theologians often kept a skull on their writing table to remind them of their mortality. Some monks in the Middle Ages used to sleep in their coffins at night to prevent them presuming on another day of life.

Whilst perhaps the habits of those theologians and monks may seem macabre, I think perhaps life itself would be all the sweeter with the constant remembrance that life on earth is not forever but life with God is forever. Considering the brevity of this life, for me, has meant an increased focus on my desire to leave a legacy full of stories of my journey with God.

When you think about your days as being numbered, do you find that your focus is sharpened? What things could you do practically to allow that focus to come to the fore in your day-to-day life?

Saturday, 25 October 2014

The Good Life 3

It appears that God is developing a theme here and I was only mildly surprised to have a challenging talk by Bill Hybels at Global Leadership Summit 2014. He asked us to consider the fact that, on our tombstones, our lives are represented by the dash between the two dates.

Louise Joan Knight

1974 -

What will you do with your dash?

Friday, 24 October 2014

The Good Life 2

I was struck by something which J John said in his series Top 10 about the 10 commandments. He was talking about a good life and what would constitute a good life - in his own inimitable way, of course. If you've never heard him, you'll find a favourite excerpt here.

J John had a unique take on how to think about life, and what God's word calls a good life. He referred to the following scripture:

'The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.' Ps 90:10

The threescore and ten adds up to seventy. So J John says we can think about this as the days of the week. If we think about it like that, I'm now into Friday. Monday to Thursday are done and gone.

And what have I done with my life so far? What will I do with the next three days, if I am granted a good life of 70 years?

What about you? Which day are you on now? Do you feel that you are living God's purpose for your life?

If not, how can you change that for the rest of your days?

Thursday, 23 October 2014

The Good Life 1

40 seems to be one of those ages which, for many, loom large for some reason. That wasn't the case for me but I did do a lot of thinking around the course and purpose of my life this year, beginning long before the big four oh.

Initially, I was thinking about my life in the light of the Petula Clark song from Goodbye, Mr Chips.

There's a question at the end of the song (for the evening) which I kept thinking about when thinking about the last four decades:

And the question I shall ask only I can answer.
Was I brave and strong and true?
Did I fill the world with love my whole life through?

In some respects, the middle verse is probably where I'm at right now.
In the noontime of my life I shall look to the sunshine,

At a moment in my life when the sky is blue.
And the blessing I shall ask shall remain unchanging.
To be brave and strong and true,
And to fill the world with love my whole life through.

If you were me, what questions would you be asking, and how would the people that have known you through your life answer them? How do you think God would answer them?

Thursday, 4 September 2014


Funny-sad thing happened this morning. Cosmopolitan business types, well used to communicating in a wide range of arenas and travelling extensively swallowed their tongues whole after asking what my husband does for a living and my saying that he's a pastor. They just had n.o.t.h.i.n.g. I think in future I'll go J John's style. 'He's part of a global enterprise.' 'Behaviour modification.'

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Titus 2

Truly the most blessed moments in my life are when this thirsty girl is granted a moment in which to show another thirsty girl where to find water.

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Cor 12:9b

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Remember all His promises

'Disappointment is part of life. Not everything we hope for comes to fruition. Sometimes it is just the small inconsequential expectations that are not fulfilled and it is easy to move on. Sometimes more significant hopes are dashed and life is changed for ever – the serious health diagnosis, the failed examination or career, the unfulfilled desire for a marriage or a child. Even delays can be distressing at the time, but looking back we can often see that God was there with us, redirecting our steps to new possibilities.' Grace Tomlinson ~ WordLive

I posted previously that often God reminds His people to remember. Did you remember some of His promises?

'LORD God, please do what you promised me and my descendants.' King David in 1 Chronicles 17:23 after God promises to flip his disappointment on it's head.

Monday, 1 September 2014


We underestimate the value of lament. Going to God and pouring out your heart about the difficulties facing you can be very comforting and can bring healing. A whole book about it exists in the bible. How often have you heard a sermon from Lamentations? I have added Lamentations 3:28-29 to my email signature because it has been so helpful for me:

'When life is heavy and hard to take, go off by yourself. Enter the silence. Bow in prayer. Don't ask questions: Wait for hope to appear.' (MSG)

Sunday, 31 August 2014

On assignment

I have been reading about King David this week. He challenges and encourages his son Solomon at one point and I thought about it and thought perhaps Jesus would say the same to us, only with our specific purposes detailed. David says to Solomon: 'The LORD has chosen you to build a temple for worshiping him. Be confident and do the work you have been assigned.' 1 Chron 28:10

So what would be what Jesus says to you?

'___[name]___, the LORD has chosen you to ___[purpose]___. Be confident and do the work you have been assigned.'