Showing posts with label Great Doddington. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Great Doddington. Show all posts

09 December 2008

Great Doddington - The ham of God

Rachael read the story about the ham of God by Anne Lamott. There's a transcript of Anne talking about the story, it shows how even the most unlikely and unexpected events can be used by him if we are just open enough to see. It shows how sometimes he may give us something for someone else so that we need to relate together to get the best outcome.

Like Anne, sometimes we can go from desert to rain in the blink of an eye!

We also thought about hidden writing using unknown letters. Try as we will we simply cannot see the meaning. Father says that even though you can't see the meaning, yet there is a meaning.

Chris pointed out that we are merely 'on loan' to one another, we are a blessing to one another.

Rachael saw people in a huge circle, dancing and playing harps, pipes and other instruments. They were dancing around the walls of a town like Jericho. It seemed to her that it is sometimes the relationship of the people to one another that brings the walls down. It's important to keep on dancing.

02 December 2008

Great Doddington - A broken mirror

We had the thought that when a mirror is broken, each piece still reflects him. Nothing is lost. This seems to be a picture of the church.

This will be our last Tuesday meeting, in future we will meet on Mondays as Rachael will not be free on Tuesdays.

25 November 2008

Great Doddington - Smoke or cloud?

Jody had prepared something from Job and took us through the entire book, picking out particular verses and passages to focus on how Job's understanding of himself and God changed. Smoke or cloud?We go through a similar process in life (and especially in mourning).

In Job 2:1-10 we see how he is resisting defeat and remains strong in spirit. He confronts his wife, 'Shall we accept good from God and not trouble?'.

But in chapter 3:1-5 we see that Job is now in deep despair and is cursing himself. He wishes he'd never been born.

In chapter 12, verses 1-4 he feels the world is laughing at him, he has become bitter.

Eventually Elihu comes on the scene; as the youngest person present he has been listening quietly but now feel he must speak up to say what the others have overlooked. In Job 32:1-5 he reminds Job and his friends that we may feel the need to justify ourselves but the Lord is beyond criticism. He does not need our justification, he can do whatever he wishes and cannot be held accountable. He is always right.

And in chapter 40, verse 7, the Lord himself speaks.

As we talked and prayed with Job fresh in our minds, the Spirit brought thoughts and images to mind.

Rachael described walking down some stairs, out through some heavy double doors, into the garden, and straight into his presence. We can relax in his presence and we can see and feel all of the good and amazing things that are there.

She also spoke about the difference between smoke and clouds, although they can seem superficially similar. Father tells us not to confuse the two and that he is showing us how to see the difference. And he told her, 'As you go back up the stairs - I am with you.'

Jody pointed out that smoke smells of burning, but clouds in the mountains smell clean, pure, and wonderful.

We laughed together at the idea of 'spiritnav' (like satnav, 'spiritnav' guides us). And just like satnav, where does the signal come from? From above!

18 November 2008

Great Doddington - Shipwrecked!

Continuing with our recent form of meeting, this week it was Chris's turn to bring some prepared material. He decided to share more detail about the trip he and Donna had made to Israel in November 2007 and he brought a few pictures from the outward journey.

The plane had to wait about 20 minutes before it could land at Tel Aviv, Clearing Mediterranean storma heavy thunderstorm and a very wet runway meant that it was impossible to land on schedule. That first night in Israel was spent in a coastal Kibbutz hotel and the storm continued all night with torrential rain and frequent, violent bursts of thunder and lightning.

This reminded Chris of Paul's shipwreck on Malta in weather conditions that must have been much the same. At the time he was a prisoner on his way to Rome to appear before Caesar, and one of these winter storms had blown up. We read Acts 26:32-28:16 and recognised that Paul's life was very much like our own. He was trapped by circumstances, things happen and we, like Paul, must just deal with them as they arise. Paul was not anxious, he was not frustrated by the delays, he didn't complain, he just took life day by day, moment by moment, knowing that the Lord would use it all. The passage reads just like any typical diary.

As we talked and prayed we recognised that we are not special people doing special things, we are ordinary people being used in special ways. There is a world of difference.

Rachael described a vision of a waiting room. In this situation people tend to remain alone even though they are together, each one reads a magazine and they don't talk to one another or interact. But it need not be like that.

Father told us, 'Life is a place where you are waiting for me, you can interact with other people, you don't need to be alone.' As eh looked, Rachael noticed a broom in the corner, it was worn out and had only a few bristles left. And the Lord said, 'It's not fit for its purpose. If you all pull together you are like a broom with many bristles - fit for me to use.'

Jody also described a picture, she saw a specialist workshop where cellos were being made, several workers were busy there. She saw one cello neck and fingerboard which already had strings but was not yet attached to a soundbox. She realised that it can't be used to make a useful sound until the two parts are properly joined.

In the same way, we are not quite finished yet, but when we are completed and are all gathered together we'll make a wonderful orchestral sound. She understood that it's most important that we allow the necessary work to be done.

11 November 2008

Great Doddington - Madeleine McCann and David Beckham

Tonight it was Rachael's turn to bring something to the table, and the evening turned into a discussion about family, both worldly and spiritual, loss, grief, hope, and the Lord's healing.

We thought about Madeleine McCann again, and prayed for her and her family in their continuing search for their beautiful daughter. Beacons of lightJody prayed that Father pour our His holy spirit upon Madeleine and her family, that they may continue to receive the blessing of hope, and she received a word that although we do not know the future, nevertheless He does, and that He continues to be very close to Madeleine at all times and holds her in His heart. We were reminded that all things work to His purpose, however impossible that may seem to us at the time. We prayed for Kate and Gerry McCann, that they might be gently guided to a place of acceptance, and for them and ourselves, that we might recognise Him as He really is, in the ordinary, everyday things in life.

We read aloud and discussed a prayer for Madeleine, single lines taken from different parts of the bible, strung together like a beautiful necklace with a distinct meaning for her, a love letter from her Father in heaven. This included the lines 'my dear child, I knew you even before you were born' (Jeremiah 1:4-5), 'my plan for you future has always been filled with hope' (Jeremiah 29: 11), and 'when you are broken hearted I am close to you' (Psalm 34: 18).

Peter prayed that we can be beacons of light, and that we might be strengthened to carry His word beyond ourselves. This led Jody to pray that we be enabled to leave everything worldly behind, and do the things that He speaks of, and be in the places He want us to be. We thanked Him for reminding us that He always loves us.

Rachael shared a picture. She was walking slowly down a beautiful winding flight of stairs. At the bottom were some French doors, fully opened, and a gentle breeze moving the voile curtain at each side. She walked out into a beautiful garden, where everything was perfect, with wonderful flowers of fabulous colours and scents, melodic birdsong, a peaceful and tranquil place that gave her rest and healing. This is His garden, where we can visit at any time, just by thinking of Him. He will transport us to a place of calm filled with His love when we call upon Him for help.

Jody also saw a picture, of an angel fish swimming in really dark water. There was a chemical phosphorescence in it's scales, which meant that even when a very tiny ray of light hit it, it shone and lit up. Jody described a feather like fin on the fish, green, blue and red, iridescent, which glowed in the darkness. God is saying that He is the fin that propels us forward, even when it is dark He knows the way, even when the water is really black, He is still very colourful and is able to move us around in the world for His purpose.

Rachael read some short extracts from David Beckham's autobiography. David is not a Christian, as far as we know, but nevertheless some of the things he has written about in his book about family, lit up with a meaning beyond his own. For example, where he says that until he loved his own children, he never really realised how much his mum and dad loved him. As parents ourselves, with the birth of a new baby, we have all experienced anew the realisation that this special joy must be a reflection of how much our heavenly Father loves us. In knowing how deeply we feel for our own child, we get some inkling of His attachment to us.

David describes the birth of his second son, when he had expected, having experienced it once before, to be ready for the emotions it brought. But then says 'that's not how it was for me at all. ...the feelings of excitement and happiness, of pride and awe, just flooded through me with all the same intensity they had three years before.....it took my breath away....I could feel my heart grow to make room for the new life'. It seemed amazing to us that our Father in heaven feels something like this when one of us is reborn. That each one of us is special to Him, that He has enough room in His heart for all of us to thrive and grow in the spirit.

21 October 2008

Great Doddington - Travelling nowhere

Discussing the church as we experience it, we recognised that people in the world see 'church' in one of two ways. Either they see it in terms of a building, often an old and historic building, or alternatively they see 'church' as a denomination - 'The ... Church' (fill in the dots - Baptist, Catholic, Anglican, United Reformed etc). Travelling by busBut the Bible never mentions the Church as being a building or a denomination. We felt we need to get back to what the Bible means by 'church'.

Jody described a dream, she has been experiencing the dream repeatedly recently and it always involves an aspect of travelling. Sometimes her dream takes place in an airport or a plane, sometimes in a Canadian streetcar, a boat, or some other form of transport. In the dream she is travelling nowhere in particular, and she notices the same places and the same people over and over again. It's as if the journey is taking her round and round but she gets no further forward.

We then began talking about books and the Bible in particular. We considered how we get an impression of what was in the author's mind when the book was written, but it's not possible to understand fully what the author intended. Even so, sometimes we have the sense that we have grasped it. And then we feel excited - 'Ah, now I get it!' This is true of the Bible too. How much we need to 'get' what the Lord means, what was in his heart as he authored it.

Last week, Rachael wanted to pray for the ability to remain in the world without being affected by the world.

It dawned on us that all of these ideas are connected at a fundamental level. As the Church we need to be so much more than a building or an organisation. And we don't want to just go round and round in our journey like Jody's dream. Instead we want to walk with the Lord and arrive at a destination with him. And it's the purposeful journey together that is the true church and represents Christ to the world. To travel that journey we need to understand what he means when he speaks and acts, we need to know his heart and whether we have fully 'got' the message.

Rachael became aware of a heavy darkness. And we were given the word, 'A shark is a useful thing because it makes all the little fish swim together'. There's no further interpretation to this, though clearly it might mean that when times are good we might all wander and feel independent, but danger can be a useful thing if it causes us to draw together and act in unison.

14 October 2008

Great Doddington - the door is open

We chatted over hot drinks for some time, thinking about forgiveness and other topics. Rachael prayed that we'd become free to forgive. She also described a picture she received of an ice house, it was like a huge igloo, An open dooror an ice hotel. The Lord showed her that we might think a structure like that is very strong, but all it takes is some sunshine and it will just melt away. Father said,

'Where my Son returns, the church as you know it will melt away. The church in the world is white like ice, you can't see through it. But as it begins to melt away it will become transparent. This is already beginning to happen.'

Chris also had a word, 'The only thing that prevents the truth being visible is a failure to look.'

Jody shared the thought that perfect love removes fear. Father spoke to her too,

'Take my hand, the door is open, don't be afraid to walk through the door. You will have the tools you need, the means to go. So take my hand, and don't be afraid. The things that happen to you are merely temporal, but your life in me is an eternal blessing.

After this, Chris shared a picture of a nut bush. There were squirrels in the grass and they kept running off with fallen nuts but came back again and again for more. Father said,

'Keep coming back to me where there is more than enough to feed you. Don't stop coming back.

The meeting tonight was rich with words from the Lord. Jody shared again,

'Invite me into your day. Place me in the centre and bring your thoughts and prayers. My Spirit is like a warm breeze that will come into your heart. Become weak in me so that I can make you strong. Stop fighting against things, I have won the battle - and most importantly - I've already won the war!'

Remembering right back to the early days of these meetings, Chris mentioned that Father had told us then, 'Don't try to do anything, just be my people.'

Rachael shared a last word for this evening. 'Think of me like an umbrella my people, I am always with you and I'll always protect you - wherever you go.'

07 October 2008

Great Doddington - earthquake and desert

Tonight had a sober tone initially when we prayed for Pete Shortall-Strike, aged 29, who died suddenly and shockingly last week, Desert landscapeand for his family and friends. It is hard to make sense of the death of such a vibrant, vivacious young man who appeared to have his whole life ahead of him.

Rachael had a picture of Father sitting in an armchair having a chat with his children. He was saying that His will and our will are like two techtonic plates under a continent, and that when they move in different directions they rub up against each other, and it's not surprising therefore that the friction causes a little smoke, and an earthquake sized shift in the ground beneath our feet, or a bit of a rumble.

A prophesy was heard, that the day is coming when it will rain in the desert, the day is coming when the rivers and lakes will dry up, and the time is coming when Father and His people will stand together, they will see Him and know Him.

Prayers were said for the political leaders grappling with the complexities of the global banking crisis, that they would be guided to make the right choices and that they would inject a moral code into the system to reduce the likelihood of this happening again. We also prayed for Abigail Maynard and her parents Chris and Judy, that the Lord would intervene with Abigail's liver failure and that her parents would be strengthened and their work for the Lord glorified.

Our prayers centred around 'praying' into God's will - being so much aware how easy it is to follow our own will, and sometimes when we translate our will as His; we all felt the need to be at peace with our situations even when we don't understand what is going on around us, our families, our friends...lets face it, the world!

30 September 2008

Great Doddington - A white lily

After talking about forgiveness for a while we listened to a track from a Bill Johnson CD in which he tells a story about his (fictional) history as a pen thief. It had us in stitches! But it also spoke to us about the depth and breadth of forgiveness that we have in Christ.
A white lily
We talked a bit more about condemnation and righteousness and then Jody read Romans 5:1-21. Rachael shared a picture of the Lord's house. There were a lot of people there, having a party, but they didn't know him. They were busy putting up decorations for their party but because they didn't know Jesus they couldn't see him and they didn't realise he was quietly watching them. As they put up decorations and lights and speakers he was following and quietly taking it all down again.

Some of the people didn't realise what was happening and just went round and round redecorating places they'd already done before. Some noticed that what they had done been mysteriously undone, those people turned round and saw the Lord and began to relate to him and have a conversation with him.

Chris thought that we need to do what Yahshua does. We are called to be like him, we are called to do what he does. When people see us and talk with us they need to see him and hear him.

Jody prayed that we'd take him into our whole life, into our family life, life with our neighbours etc. She asked for wisdom to say his word, the right word, at the right time.

Jody also saw a white arum lily, huge but perfect with beautiful, waxy petals. She saw that each of us is perfectly formed and very beautiful, and she understood that we are be ourselves like that during the coming week. People will be drawn to his beauty in us. She shared a word from the Lord, 'You are to go out and invite them in. You are not to reject the world but you are to go out into it and bless them.'

Rachael also spoke out his words, 'The place where I am is like a raging forest fire. It purifies you, and it leaves behind the ash. Go out into the world and share the love and life that is in you - it will not come back empty'.

We shared the bread and wine together, his body broken for us - but in another sense we are his body now. He is building us although we have been broken. There's a kind of symmetry here - his body was whole and became broken, but now we who are his body and were broken are becoming whole. It is a mystery.

In old covenant times the Jews believed that the life of an animal was in the blood, so when the blood was let out in sacrifice, it was the life that was being poured out. So when we share the wine representing his blood, we also share the wine in its other meaning representing his life. And because in reality too we have a share in his blood poured out for us, so we also have a very real share in his life.

23 September 2008

Great Doddington - The equation

This evening we shared some news about our families and friends, especially Abigail (who remains ill) but also Matthew who is starting Bible college, and of course our own children too.

Russian dolls seemed like a good illustration of life's problems to Jody. She pointed out how a Surface plot of an equationproblem that may be small in itself can get layered over with more and more stuff in our minds until it appears huge. She finds herself dragged down by an awareness of her own failures. Life is often hard, even distressing, and we wonder, 'Why can't the Lord just make it all come right?'

Chris thought of the verses in Ephesians 3:14-19 where we read that we are 'rooted and established in love'. It's like the trees on the banks of the river that flows out from under the Temple (Ezekiel 47:1-12). They are fruitful, their roots go deep underground, they are drawing living water from the river. They have everything they need although the roots through which it's supplied are hidden from view.

Rachael had a picture in which she saw little children doing simple sums, and then a professor working with complex equations, and she saw that each must do what is appropriate and suitable for them. And then she saw an equation and understood its meaning.

if J > Ey then X + J = V

where J is Jesus, E represents his enemies, y is any number, X is humans - his people, and V is victory.

This is what it means. If Jesus is greater than his enemies raised to any power, then his people plus Jesus equal infinite victory! Rachael said, 'If Jesus is greater than any number of his enemies', but the maths she described actually means, 'If Jesus is greater than his enemies raised to any power'. How cool is that?

Jody saw something that looked like the Grand Canyon, it had a lake at the bottom. The Lord told her, 'As you see this small lake, know that I am large and powerful enough to fill this canyon to overflowing to water the desert and turn this red rock into green pasture.

16 September 2008

Great Doddington - Our weakness, his strength

While we were chatting at the beginning of the meeting we thought that we often grow weary of our circumstances, but it's good to remember that we're only in the world, not of it. A plane in the airSometimes life seems like being on a plane that flies round and round but never arrives at its destination.

Jody referred to Psalm 28, we read that his purpose is to bless us (v 8-9).

Chris mentioned that there's no hope in us, in the people who are in need, or in the financial system; there's only hope in Yahshua. He is our hope! Jody read Psalm 41 in which Yahweh protects and blesses the weak.

And then Jody shared a picture of a red velvet bag tied with a twisted silk cord. The top had opened and a very large pearl had fallen out. Jody told us that the Lord says, 'You are like that pearl - precious to me'.

Rachael thought about the plane flying around and said that it might seem to be going round and round when seen from above, but it might also be flying higher and higher if we could see it from the side.

Chris read two passages, Luke 6:20-26 and Luke 12:49-53. They contrast strongly with one another. Jesus came to bring comfort, peace and joy - but also division and distress. Which we receive depends, not on our circumstances, but on our hearts.

Rachael prophesied, 'Look, you know you can just reach out and touch me whenever you want. You don't have to join a long queue that winds round the corner and down the next street. You can just reach out and touch me.'

We also thought about the cycle of life. From a fruit come seeds, these fall and grow and produce trees. The trees produce more fruit, exactly the same so many more seeds fall and grow. Seeds change everything! One fruit can turn a grassy field into a whole forest.

Rachael shared a picture of a large bed with a beautifully embroidered cover. Father asks us, 'Why are you sleeping on that pile of straw covered with an old rag when you could be in the bed I've already provided?' She also thought of the words of an old Diana Ross song, 'Reach out and touch'.

Finally, we had the thought that we are privileged as his people, but there are so many unprivileged who don't know him. We are his body in the earth, we have to allow him to reach out through us - to the people all around us. This is also our prayer, to be used like this.

10 September 2008

Great Doddington - Skylight and Passover

It was good to meet, share the bread and wine together, and nibble bread and cheese before going our separate ways.

We began by chatting together about recent event in our lives. Chris described a picture of a large and airy room with no door, we were all there in the room. There was a window in each of the four walls, Blue sky, sunshine breaking throughlooking out of the first window all that could be seen was a bleak, gloomy view with heavy, grey clouds. Looking out of the next window, the scene was exactly the same. The third window showed the same view too and then looking through the fourth and final window - the view was the same again, grey, dull, and heavy.

But up above was a skylight, and through the skylight was a beautiful blue sky, and we knew that soon the blue area would move to the part of the sky where the sun would be, and the light would illuminate the scenery outside the windows. So often we see the grey, heavy, drab view in every direction and forget to look up towards the skylight.

Rachael saw a picture of foam, really light and frothy foam, the kind that can just blow away in a light breeze. She realised that the Lord is light, not only of the visible kind but also he is light in 'weight'. He is mobile, like foam that is able to be carried on the lightest movement of air.

Jody spoke about Passover and the Day of Atonement. She reminded us that the Passover bread was unleavened, made without yeast for speed and cooked in haste. Jesus paid the price, making atonement for us once and for all.

We prayed for friends and relatives, and although some of us had been heavy-hearted during the week, our spirits and hearts were lifted as we spent the time with him tonight. It's so good to know that he is here with us.

03 September 2008

Great Doddington - Playgrounds and a flag

During this evening's meeting, Rachael saw two playgrounds, they were typical children's playgrounds with all the usual equipment. One of then had a notice that read, 'If you want to play, you have to pay', Empty playgroundand it was full of children. The other playground had a similar sign but it read, 'This playground is free'. But there were only a few children playing there. And then she saw that there was a small gate between the two playgrounds and some people were moving from the paid playground to the free one.

Jody saw a flagpole with a huge flag fluttering in the wind. As she looked it changed into a myriad different colours, as if all the flags of the world were mixed up but coming to the fore one by one.

Rachael received the single word 'unravelling'. She understood that the Lord is unravelling us as we live our lives. He moves us forward in his plan, sometimes it may not be a comfortable process, but in the end we need to be unravelled so that we can be remade in the image of the Son.

Jody spoke about judging ourselves, and then Chris shared a picture of ice floating on the ocean. The ice was massively jammed and because it was so tightly packed none of it was able to move. As he watched, he saw that the ice was melting. Yahshua is melting us and we will become free to move!

26 August 2008

Great Doddington - Travelling or building?

Rosie joined us this evening, it was great to have her with us. Thanks for coming Rosie, come again soon!

For a long time we talked, sharing so much that had happened in our lives since we last met.Building work
Later, the Lord showed us that our lives are like journeys. Although we need to stop sometimes, we are not meant to camp for a very long time at any particular point. And it's quite impossible to build anything when on a journey. If we're not to camp for very long, we are certainly not meant to build anything.

But isn't that exactly what we tend to do? Building something is not what the Almighty has in mind for us. He builds his church; that is enough for us.

22 July 2008

Great Doddington - Table and vine

This was a great evening. At one point Jody brought oil, feeling we should anoint Peter - so that's exactly what we did.

Rachael decribed a vision of a long, long trestle table in what appeared to be a mediaeval castle hall. A jigsawThe table had an almost completed jigsaw laid out along its entire length. The jigsaw was composed of many scenes from life, and each scene contained something of Jesus. At a time of particular difficulty there was a beam of light or a glass containing the water of life, and in a scene when all was well there was a little bird sitting in a tree or some other little, joyful feature. The long jigsaw represented a person's lifetime, from birth to death.

At the end, the man making the jigsaw had only a few pieces left to add.

Chris saw that there were many tables and they all centred on Jesus and each long jigsaw was actually joined into him. So the place where the jigsaw ended, the point of death, was also the place where it joined with the centre and in reality connected fully with Christ.

We reflected on these pictures and considered again how we are grafted into the one true vine (John 15). We really are a royal priesthood!

29 June 2008

Great Doddington - A narrow life

< 20th March 2008 | Index | 3rd July 2008 >

Few notes were taken, but we did record one gem from Rachael who said, 'This new way of life is so narrow we cannot take ourselves into it, we have to leave ourselves behind.'

< 20th March 2008 | Index | 3rd July 2008 >

18 May 2007

Great Doddington - Well and bike

< 8th May 2007 | Index | 25th May 2007 >

Four of us met this evening - Jody, Pete, Rachael, and Chris. After discussing various things together we thought about the woman at the well and Jody read the passage from 'The Message', John 4:1-42. We need cleansing in living water, there is no other way! Jesus knew that the Samaritan woman was unclean. The Jews ritually washed in a Mikvah which contained living water, that is water from a natural, flowing source. Jesus was offering this sinful woman (not even a Jew) spiritual Living Water.

When the disciples got back from grocery shopping they were puzzled, and perhaps disappointed too. Their noses might well have been a little out of joint. 'He sends us off to the shops and instead of sharing his life with us, his chosen apprentices, he shares it with this woman, this sinful woman - and she's a Samaritan!' Yes, that's us! She's just like us. The simple truth is that Jesus knows us, he knows what is in our hearts and yet he still wants to give us life.

This reminded Chris of a sermon he and Donna heard recently while on holiday. The person speaking was a professional psychiatrist. He read John 1:43-51 where Nathanael is so astonished that Yahshua knows him. Apparently Nathanael was about the same age as Yahshua, born about the same time, and so he was born at the time when Herod murdered all the boys under the age of two. This was a marked generation, all the adults at that time would have been psychologically scarred, the grief would have been deep and the impact lasting. And there is a legend amongst the Jews that Nathanael survived the slaughter because his mother hid him under a fig tree! Yahshua knows what is in our heart, he knows all about us!

We considered that moral choices are very hard, but in the end everything is more straightforward than we dare to hope or expect because the only things necessary are to love Yahweh and to love one another. If we will just do those two things, all the difficult choices and decisions in life will resolve themselves. There's a cost of course, and that is giving up what we want in order to do what he wants.

Next we were treated to a whole stream of pictures. Jody saw a candle burning, and understood that a candle in the dark can shed a lot of light. Love is like a candle in the dark, it is all we need.

Rachael saw a man trying to ride a bike. He was not getting on very well and she realised that it was one of those trick bicycles, designed so that turning the handlebars one way causes the wheel to turn the opposite way. And the Lord said to her, 'You will never be able to ride that bike. Your brother is lying by the side of the road, dying. Get off the bike and go to be beside your brother.'

Jody considered that we have become anaesthetised to violence and the many dreadful things that happen in the world. We shrug our shoulders and say, 'Well, that's life', but the Lord says, 'No, it's not life.' She also had a word that the ocean is blue and the sky is an amazing blue too, the blades of grass are a fresh green, the colours on the feathers of a bird's wing are amazing, and they all go so well together. And in the same way we each have our own special colour - like the pieces of a mosaic. Broken little pieces of crockery can be assembled to make a beautiful mosaic that presents a wonderful picture. We are like that when he assembles us. Jody also had another picture, she saw a pair of hands holding a double-sided mirror that you could look through, but she didn't know what this picture meant.

Chris was shown that one side of the mirror represents the wobbly bike, the things in our lives that we struggle with, moral issues, the problems we face that seem too hard to deal with or too difficult to understand. The other side of the mirror is that we love the Lord and that we love one another. Our lives seem to have both aspects to them, but it's only where those two aspects meet that we begin to see clearly and the problems can be met. We have to apply his love to all those difficult situations, and then we will see clearly what to do in each of them.

< 8th May 2007 | Index | 25th May 2007 >

08 May 2007

Great Doddington - Canada and boats

< 2nd May 2007 | Index | 18th May 2007 >

We talked for a long time this evening, but it was more than just talk for talk's sake. We covered a lot of topics and considered how some of them related to the things we believe and hold true.

One of the things we discussed was the idea of giving up our lives for the Lord. It's not enough to do things for him and to work hard at being Christians, instead we need to really let go of everything else but him. Nothing in our lives should matter more than he does.

Chris shared a thought from something he'd heard on a Colin Urquhart recording. We know from the Bible that it's more blessed to give than to receive and this is a spiritual truth. It applies to the Lord just as much as it does to us, so when we receive from Him He is blessed. We should never be reticent about accepting His gifts and favour, He enjoys giving us good things just like any good parent. This is an interesting point; we don't normally understand it this way. It's clear to us that we should be cheerful givers and that we benefit from that, but we don't usually consider how much the Lord loves to give and the benefit He receives. When we refuse to accept from him we take away the blessing he is due.

We also spoke about the ways in which we are all in a state of transition, with Jody and Peter considering moving to Canada, and Chris and Rachael's Mum and Dad's recent transition from this world to the next, the imminent transition of Rachael's daughter Rosie to motherhood, and overall the transition of priority from 'self' to 'his will' in each of us. This is truly the most important thing of all, that he should have his way in us, not that we should have our own way.

At the end of the evening Jody suggested we spend some time in prayer, and that turned out to be really useful.

Father told us we are like little boats bobbing in a stormy sea, but we are safe, the waves will not capsize us, the wind will not blow us over, he is with us in the boat.

We thought, not for the first time, that these meetings are all different and don't really follow a particular pattern. Yet the Lord graciously reaches into our lives and touches us - over and over and over again.

< 2nd May 2007 | Index | 18th May 2007 >

27 April 2007

Great Doddington - Wall and candle

< 17th April 2007 | Index | 2nd May 2007 >

There was a sense throughout this meeting of two places or states, and of the boundary between the two states.

Jody shared a picture of a high wall stretching into the distance across a barren, desert landscape. People were walking along it. Chris thought it seemed that Earth was on one side and Heaven was on the other. It's as if we are walking along the boundary between Earth and Heaven.

Rachael saw an egg-timer with the sand running through it. For a long time a particular grain of sand seems hardly to be moving, but then it rushes through the narrow part of the timer and settles in the lower part. We too will eventually come to a 'narrow' place and will pass through it.

Chris mentioned how in Jeremiah 18 the pot can be reworked easily when the clay is soft, but once it's been fired (as in Jeremiah 19) breaking it means cannot be repaired (but see also 21st June 2006). Once our softness is gone, we are no longer mouldable and pliable in his hands and he holds back (Jeremiah 18:8). The potter in chapters 18 and 19 might have been the same potter, in fact it might even have been the same pot!

One of us had a word through the Spirit in which the Lord said, 'I am the candle in the darkness, I want the best for you no matter how dark things seem. I am - I always will be. Remember that - I am! Don't look back, only look forwards for that's where I am - in your future.

< 17th April 2007 | Index | 2nd May 2007 >

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