Search

Tea and Theology

Tag

creation

Focus

Most of this week I have accompanied a parish retreat with the Community of Saint Mary the Virgin in Wantage. It is always a privilege to take time out of the busyness of life, but even more so when supporting others in that. It has been a wonderful opportunity to explore or embrace a focus which allows for concentration on finer details of God’s calling, where everyday parish life encourages a bigger picture approach.


Focusing in on fine details has to begin with a scan of the overall picture, before considering where to hone your attention.


How close you focus depends very much on God’s leading, and it can be about trying a few things before truly reaching the place where the light leads…


Even when these initial steps seem irrelevant, it can be so important to notice our feelings and thoughts through this process of discernment.


Very often I have found that the destination is the journey itself, observing the intricacies of God’s character through the beauty of creation can only leave us in awe of God as creator, redeemer and sustainer. That awe leads us on.


Sometimes it leads to a change in focus before we fully realise where the light is drawing us.


When drawn deeper into a place of solace with God that is when the focus can really begin to deepen.


As well as becoming more centred on Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, and focusing on the importance of the Eucharist as a spiritual meal through which we are transformed into the likeness of Christ, I began to experience the cross in a new way.


I was drawn to this particular cross which rested above the altar. Right at its heart was the world, the whole world, drawn in by one huge final sacrifice. Having also been afforded the luxury of reading Mindfulness and Christian Spirituality by Tim Stead, and putting some of that into practice, I began to notice the absolute comfort which came from this powerful symbol, which represented the sacrifice given for the whole of creation through the death of Christ on the cross – and it’s that simple! This is such good news…do we always present it in this way?

Try focusing on one small object or symbol that you feel drawn to – where does it take you?

img_3085

dsc_0072

The Little Ribbon Tin
As my eyes fixed on the little ribbon tin
Transfixed on the beautiful, paled pattern
I wondered who, before me, had it chosen
Whose fingerprints had been embellished
by the vibrant colours here once settled
on this worn, mesmerising, little ribbon tin.

How long ago had they walked the earth
What sort of person, was there any mirth
vibrance and creativity or more of a dearth
of all that we respect, admire and hold dear
How did they come to lose it, through fear
disregard or death perhaps…and thenceforth?

And what was the purpose of this beautiful
receptacle, before it became slightly dull
Did it always house ribbons, always so full
or was it sat empty? Money, buttons or tea?
Bills, cotton, sugar or another commodity
Something meaningful or insignificant, little…

Where and when did it originally come alive
Somewhere familiar or foreign, with a vibe
clearly oozing opportunity, vitality and life
A world far from our time and knowledge
Yet one which may say much about dredge
and call us to be content with what we have.

And these hands, have they been embellished
Or rather influenced, shaped and moulded?
Positively, gently…maybe abused, oppressed
With expectation; demands to be, say and do
Things fitting for a woman, to have and to hold
Still content to be contained and constrained?

Simple beauty

#632 #bluebells as a reminder of the simple #beauty in #creation and a firm promise of #spring 

If this sky could talk…

#540 #creatorgod #beautyinnature If this #sky could talk what would it be saying? What #wisdom would it offer the world it looks down upon? Would it be pleased with all it sees?

Sunset drive

#512 #sunsetdrive through #derbyshire – a reminder of #lightoftheworld #beautyincreation and the need to #taketimetobe Amen.

Privilege?

#448 Lovely #sunsets at Cuddesdon remind me of how privileged I am to be able to afford the time to bask in the beauty of #God and #creation. #grateful 

Awe and wonder

#393 Much of #day11 of #placement after holiday club has been taken up with writing scripts, crafting slides and making music for the holiday club service on Sunday. I needed a beautiful sky photo to illustrate the awesomeness of the #heavens so I borrowed a real camera…I hope this conveys #awe and #wonder?!

Amazing universe: loving God


#391 #day9 of #placement was the first day of #holidayclub, a long standing tradition for the church. This involved a memory verse which was longer than any I would have remembered! #psalm8v3and4 “I look at the heavens, which you made with your hands. I see the moon and stars, which you created. But why is man important to you? Why do you take care of human beings?” These seem like such pertinent questions…some might disagree and say that God doesn’t take care of human beings. What is striking for me is that the majesty of God shines through our #amazinguniverse and yet he is a #lovinggod who wants a relationship with his people, despite our many imperfections! My #sundaysermon is on this psalm…how can I do it justice?!

Lovely flowers

#350 #flowers are a truly beautiful gesture of love and care for another person. They smell and look lovely and say so much. They are also a reminder of God’s beautiful creation around us. #lovelyflowers

Croquet on the lawn


#285 What better way to spend a Sunday afternoon than playing #croquet on the lawn and drinking #ginandtonic in the #sunshine at theological college?! Taking time to relax in the sun is good for the soul, and it gives us the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of God’s #creation: #sun #nature #friendship and #laughter

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑