The second part of Jesus’ response to a teacher of the law who had asked him which commandments were most important, was this: ‘The second is this: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these.’ Mark 12. 31 This was not new teaching. There are many references which relate to how the Jews should treat their neighbours, particularly in the books of Exodus, Leviticus and Deuteronomy. In fact, in Leviticus 19.18 we find the identical… [Continue Reading]
Sally is now taking a break from her daily reflections to join in with the Thy Kingdom Come initiative that we are being encouraged to join in as a Church. Download the Thy Kingdom Come prayer journal which covers the 10 days resources. The idea is that you download (or print) the PDF and then access one per day. They are marked Day 1, 2, etc.
At this point in our Morning Prayers we are presented with the words of Jesus recorded in Mark’s gospel: The first commandment is: “Listen Israel! the Lord our God is the only Lord. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength. Mark 12. 29, 30 This commandment is at the heart of our Christian faith, but it is not an easy task. How can we love… [Continue Reading]
This morning’s Gospel reading is Luke 5.1-11, the story of the miraculous catch and the calling of the first disciples. John’s Gospel doesn’t have this story but there is a remarkable parallel right at the end. After the resurrection, after they’ve met with Jesus several times, Peter decides to go and fish. Afterwards Jesus appeared again to his disciples, by the Sea of Galilee. It happened this way: Simon Peter, Thomas (also known as Didymus), Nathanael from Cana in Galilee,… [Continue Reading]
We come to the final reason given in the Introductory words for setting aside time for Morning Prayer: “We have come… to seek his grace, that, through his Son, Jesus Christ, we may give ourselves to his service.” One of the purposes of coming to meet God every day is to be equipped for service. Note that we cannot undertake any work effectively for God unless we have first received something of his grace. The story Jesus told about the… [Continue Reading]
“We have come… to bring before him the needs of the world…” Jesus brought to his followers a new focus on the world. The Jews had considered themselves as having a special and superior relationship with God. To be a gentile was decidedly to be second best. The Old Testament writers were unhesitatingly intolerant of the people of other nations; violent warfare against them was seen as being justifiable, often undertaken in God’s name. When Jonah preached against the sin… [Continue Reading]
News from Tearfund A new wave of crop-eating locusts is devastating East Africa, just as communities brace themselves for an increase of coronavirus cases. At the start of 2020, Ethiopia and Somalia faced the biggest invasion of the insects in 25 years – and the worst in Kenya and Uganda for 70 years. They also reached parts of South Sudan, where millions of people are already suffering from severe food shortages amid conflict and political instability. The latest plague could… [Continue Reading]
This is a new free service from the Church of England, providing spiritual nourishment for those who don’t have easy access to the internet. Please pass this number on to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 0800 804 8044 You can also download the poster and print a copy for friends.
“We have come… to hear and receive his word…” This next phrase of our Morning Prayer is a reminder of the words in introduction to the 17th Century Book of Common Prayer that we looked at in the first week: “… all the whole Bible… should be read over once every year; ….(to) be stirred up to godliness….., and be more able to exhort others by wholesome doctrine, and to confute them that were adversaries to the truth; and further,… [Continue Reading]
An update from Tearfund In the middle of this pandemic, it can be hard not to dwell on feelings of fear and anxiety – at times I certainly have. But I want to share with you three reasons why I’m feeling incredibly thankful. I hope they will encourage you, as they have me, during this time. Our global team is providing a truly global response to help tackle this pandemic Tearfund is present in more than 50 countries and we… [Continue Reading]
I hope you were blessed by Saturday morning’s readings as much as I was! The next instalment of our Reflections on Morning Prayer encompasses the phrase: “We have come.. to offer him praise and thanksgiving…“ Sometimes we need to be reminded that there are several distinct components to how we express our relationship with God; this phrase encompasses two of them. Firstly we will consider “praise“, when we focus on the “who?” aspects of God, followed by “thanksgiving” when we remember “what has God done for… [Continue Reading]
Adrian Barlow, who gave the Friends of St Edmund’s such an informative talk on Kempe and his Stained Glass, has a blog and this series of three pieces relates to Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Day. I hope you will find them as interesting as I did.