Reflections and Meditations

During Advent and Lent, many Christians challenge themselves to read and reflect about their faith. This page provides links to the weekly reflections I have written during Advent and Lent over the last few years. I hope it provides inspiration and ideas!
You may also enjoy the stories from Acomb Methodist Church about our attempts to make our church building more sustainable and develop a new community garden.  

Lent 2016: In Search of Excellence
1: From Ashes to Hope 
This Lent I will not be giving things up, but giving myself more fully to practicing the skills where I can make a real contribution. Can I learn to love discipline for a purpose, not as a means of stoking up fear and guilt that maybe I'm not up to scratch?

Pentecost 2015: In the Footsteps of St Cuthbert
A meditation about how our heritage (and the great cloud of witnesses who have gone before us) helps us engage with God today, inspired by a visit to Northumbria and to the York House of Prayer before the great feast of Pentecost.

Lent 2015: Holiness in Action
This series was inspired by Wesley's sermons and much reading about how to apply our faith in our work and the world. Reflections are generally posted weekly on Wednesdays.
Holiness in Action 1: For the Love of God
The series starts where all faith starts: with an experience of the love of God
Holiness in Action 2: The Meek Shall Inherit the Earth
What does it mean to be meek? Should we avoid power in search of true humility, or seek to use power wisely in solidarity with the powerless and voiceless?
Holiness in Action 3: God at Work
Does God care about the ordinary work we do? If so, does that change how we work? 
Holiness in Action 4: Were You There?
A Good Friday meditation using the song "Were You There When They Crucified My Lord?"
Holiness in Action 5: The Girl in Black
A Good Friday tradition and a big debate in York inspired some questioning about how does our Christian hope affect our approach to politics? 

Advent Reflections 2014
This series was inspired by Holy Boy, a choral version of the nativity which my church performed in December 2014. 
Advent Reflections 1: What Are We Here For?
Exploring the idea of Emmanuel, God with us, and what that means for us. Is there really a hope and a purpose we can be part of?
Advent Reflections 2: Making All Things New
When we say that we are waiting for God to renew the earth, what do we mean? This post is inspired by Dave Bookless' image of God as the great recycler! 
Advent Reflections 3: A Song of Mary
A reflection inspired by the Magnificat, the song of Mary's courage and desire for justice. 
Emmanuel had been a major theme in Holy Boy, and the Advent Antiphons are the original Latin songs which resulted in "O Come, O Come, Immanuel". This provides a way to prepare for Christmas over the seven days up to Christmas Eve.
Advent Reflections 5: Learning to Rejoice
Joy can seem easy at celebration times like Christmas, but can we live joyfully every day?
Advent Reflections 6: A Time to Lament
My family is going through a difficult time at the moment, which means that we need to learn to lament. How do we lament in a world which is relentlessly upbeat, where the only taboos left are sadness and loss? And is the church helping or hindering this process?
Advent Reflections 7: Finding Our Purpose
A story by Tolkien illustrates how our work in the world today contributes to God's purposes, and will see its fulfilment in the resurrection.

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