30 April 2009

Little Paxton - Eating the scroll

Sean wasn't able to join us this week, so Jim and I sat in the garden and chatted. We enjoyed the view and the balmy evening. Jim's back garden overlooks a footpath, Part of a scroll of Isaiahand beyond this a large stretch of the Paxton Pits Nature Reserve; what a beautiful, peaceful place.

We talked broadly about the terrible state of Britain today - young people who are more and more doing whatever they want, not respecting other people, uncaring, and often selfish - parents who have largely been responsible for this behaviour by not raising their families properly, broken homes, single parents struggling to cope, living on benefits, having no self respect - the economy in a dire state, mostly due to a borrow and spend mentality encouraged by the banks and a consumer-driven society.

We hold all these things before the Lord in prayer. He is the only place we can turn! We don't want to see people suffer, we want to help wherever we can, but the problems are too big and are way out of control.

Jim read out Ezekiel 1 which had greatly impressed him when he started the book on his own earlier in the day. It is an amazing display of Yahweh's power and glory. It seems strange, almost unintelligible, yet it speaks volumes about the Almighty.

Chris remarked on the parallels between Ezekiel and Revelation. There is the scroll with words of lamenting and woe, it tasted sweet like honey but turned the stomach sour (Ez 2:8-3:4, Rev 10:8-11). And there is mention of shepherds and sheep in Ezekiel and the Lamb on the Throne in Revelation (Ez 34, Rev 5:1-14, 14:1-5). There's the fallen Jerusalem in Ezekiel and the new Jerusalem in Revelation. Then there is the water flowing out from the Temple gate, the River of Life, and the trees on the riverbanks for the healing of the nations (Ez 47:1-12, Rev 22:1-5).

And we also considered that amazing passage about the valley of dry bones (Ezekiel 37:1-14), and how the vision is being played out today in the coming together and remaking of the church. The end result will be a mighty host of the newly alive, ready to function and serve. Now that is indeed something to look forward to!

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