It seemed so simple at the time; just drive to the neighbouring town for a New Year’s Day family meal. But it had rained, and that rain was followed by more rain. Then more rain was added in brutal, unrelenting deluges. The streams turned to wide lakes across the fields and the roads we drove on. The depths and valleys filled and filled and the waters rose; stretches at first to 300mm deep, then to 600 mm, then deepening to 900mm. The car, in low gear, ploughed up to its axles, and becoming more and more laboured to stalling point, cut through the flood. To add to the problems, the spray and backwash blocked the driver’s view, blinding them.
But the paved and straight course to the drier road overcame, and isn’t life also like that? The problems mount and we seem to get in deep water. We can stop and sink, stranded and marooned by our circumstances.
As Christians we cannot ford every stream in our own strength, but the power of the Holy Spirit will take us through. When we are blinded, he will be clear sighted. When we sink, he rescues. As troubles come, he comforts. How? Often through others. Others in deed and word. Others sharing everything they had. Sharing their problems. Fording the streams together. It worked in the Book of Acts in the Bible. It will work for you now!
PS, one last thing to share: a happy New Year to you all.
Join us on Sunday the 5th of January from 10am until 12 at Herstmonceux Village Hall for our breakfast drop in. Come along for a free breakfast, the Sunday papers and a chance to chat and do crafts. Everyone welcome!
As we approach the Christmas season, the season of Christ’s birth, it can be difficult to see Jesus through the tinsel and turkey, shopping, eating, and sleeping. We know from the Bible that three wise men came to His place of birth, and from that we get to the three presents of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. So perhaps to make Jesus more visible – more real – may we consider Jesus coming to stay as a grown-up this Christmas? So what present should we get for the adult Jesus? It’s often difficult to choose the right present, but for Jesus? He’s coming to stay with you from his village as the village carpenter, so you may consider a new carpentry tool. A new saw, new chisels, a pole lathe to fashion and finish wood. We would have to be careful in our choice, as we know he required nothing for himself, so what you give he will probably give away. Give away to the poor, the homeless, the disadvantaged. The poor man of Galilee giving richly.
In one Bible story it is recounted that Jesus knelt and wrote with his finger in the dust and soil on the ground. What he wrote we do not know. Let us kneel with Jesus this Christmas as he writes his Christmas list in the earth. It’s a short list that he writes in Aramaic. You. He wants the heart of you this Christmas. Did you leave yourself off Jesus’ Christmas list this year? He knows you and can see you clearly. Can you make room for him on your list? He’s waiting for his present of yourself – not just at Christmas but every day.
A happy Christmas and a great New Year to you all.
Squeeze Sunday 1st December
This Sunday we celebrated our 6th Christmas Squeeze. Festive foods and a warm and spicy drink were added to the usual festive fare. The Christmas crafts were related to our text “Glory to God in the heavenly heights, peace to all men and women on Earth.” Luke 2:14. There were baubles to decorate for selling at the Christmas market, with the proceeds going to Matthew 25. The HFC are going to match the takings so that they will have a generous amount to give. The other crafts on offer were pebble painting, Christmas card making, and icing angel biscuits. There were also jars that could be painted so that they would give out a coloured glow if a tealight was put inside them.
Join us at Herstmonceux Village Hall on Sunday the 1st of December for Squeeze Breakfast Club, there is a free breakfast, craft workshop, newspapers and discussions. Come any time between 10am and noon, everyone welcome.