Honest Christianity: Fruit of the light of which we have been made for and from

fruit hh

This was a thought around the fruit of the Spirit that I found while preparing for our Pentecost Sunday service today.(9 of us shared on one fruit each, very inspiring). I thought it really caught the essence of the fruit of the Spirit as we think about being filled and refilled with the Holy Spirit in our daily lives.

By our fruits we will be known. Actions? Naturally. Words, yes as well. When speaking out against injustice, owning up and taking responsibility for past mistakes, sins, oppression. This is the potential for the quality of the light that can shine from us reflecting our God and Kingdom in whose image we are made, Jesus as the Light of the World and the Kingdom of Heaven here now on Earth.

If we want to know what we should be doing and being, let’s try being loving, kind, gentle, good, the list goes on, so can our light.

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Friday photo – guiding lights

Trevose

Trevose lighthouse, on the edge of the north Cornish coast. I am drawn to lighthouses, there is one on my ordination stole as the metaphor is significant to me. It is only when it is dark that they act as a guiding light, but even then it is a flashing light, darkness, light, darkness, light… That might be because the light sweeps round 360 degrees although we only see it from one perspective. That helps me to realise that sometimes I need more than just my view – I can’t see everything from where I look for guiding lights to help me navigate the path.

Friday photo – looking for leaves

kingsbury

A few days into Lent, an early Lent with trees still bare and snow still forecast. I took this picture on one of our walks at Kingsbury Water Park. It is very much a Lenten picture for me, light in the gathering darkness gives me hope in the wilderness thoughts and so many bare branches helps me see the structure and growth that gets covered up when summer comes. This Lent feels like a bit of a building season for me…

Friday photo

Light of the world

The light of Christ has come into the world and we celebrate that again today. This picture is of the Birmingham Children’s Hospital by candlelight. The altar frontispiece was lovingly and prayerfully sewn by Tina Milne and her team, it is a beautiful piece in a purple silky material to sit and meditate on. For three afternoons this week the chapel was available for anyone who wanted to to come in, receive hospitality, talk to a chaplain or just sit and contemplate or pray. Making space for people to encounter the light of the world or perhaps get a glimpse of light in their darkness is a great privilege.

Christmas blessings from us both and we appreciate everyone who takes the trouble to respond to what we post in so many ways.

Honest Christianity – more light, more dirt

light

We had a new light in our kitchen this week. It has 4 LED spot bulbs and helps as we don’t have a great deal of direct sunlight coming in. The previous spotlights had almost all broken and we were cooking in the dark, we can now see much better to prep and cook. It is so effective I now feel like I am approaching a sun hot spot as I walk into the kitchen.

The negative is that what looked okay has now been revealed as grubby floor tiles and stained worktops. How much is this like being in the presence of God and Godly people? They don’t even have to say anything but the quality of their lives shines into our dark places and we become more aware of the places in our own lives that might need a bit of work. Sally did not say anything, and we don’t have anyone visiting this week but I was embarrassed into cleaning, sweeping, wiping.

So that’s more weekend chores and perhaps more long term, getting ready for more of my
spiritual grime being shown up.

Go the distance – rekindled flame

bletchley
Came across this after reflecting on exploring staff care on a retreat with BCH on Thursday, being with 160 palliative care staff in Scotland on Friday, and visiting Bletchley Park and learning more about the story of those who worked there on Saturday.

Sometimes our light goes out but is blown again into flame by an encounter with another human being. Each of us owe deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this inner light. Albert Schweitzer

On each of these days I encountered people and stories who helped to rekindle my flame…

Friday photo – light and shadows

path

On a hot sunny day walking along a path like this is just what I need! I am not a fan of relentless sun with no shade or shadow – although sometimes the metaphorical shadows in my life are harder to live with than shade on too hot a day. However, if there had been no shadows in my life I would not be who I am today and would not have some of the stories I have of God’s faithfulness to me.