On reflection and radiance

I have always loved the Sandy Denny song, “Who knows where the time goes?” “Across the evening sky, all the birds are leaving, But how can they know it’s time for them to go?” I’m quite sure that the older I get, the faster time is moving; each new season greeting me sooner than expected. …

An invitation and a promise

Even after fifteen years in Adelaide, I still feel a bit homesick at Christmas.  It usually starts when I write my Christmas cards and post them.  Fortunately, last December kept me super-occupied with five Sunday services, and Poetry Church, newsletters to write, visits to make, and winding up various things in time for the summer…

Sing to the Lord a new song

This morning, I took in the service from a pew near the back of the church.  I had preached for the last eight weeks in a row, through Advent and Christmas and well into January, so I was quite content simply to receive the word for the day from a comfortable spot at the back…

Mow the lawn

I woke up early this morning, but the sun had already been up for a while.  I lay in bed looking out of the big window at the back garden.  The honeyeaters and blackbirds and sparrows were all busy at their work.  I couldn’t see the blue tongue, but I imagine he – or she…

Standing on the promises

When I was about 16, I left my parent’s Baptist church and joined a Christian fellowship that had been formed after a split from mum and dad’s church.  I don’t remember the reasons why the church had split, and I really can’t recall what my own reasons were for following after the other congregation.  What…

Gaudete

Earlier this year, knowing that the next day’s forecast was set for hot and humid, I set a very early alarm, so that I could set off and photograph the metallic sun orchids.  The secret location was so many hours’ drive away, and I didn’t know if I’d even spot them, let alone see them…

Comfort, comfort my people

This weekend sees the first service of the new church year, and the start of the season of Advent. In this short season, we’ll look backwards to the first Christmas and what God has done for us in the Incarnation, and we’ll rest in that knowledge.  We’ll reflect on all the times that God has…

Hearts on fire

Last Sunday, between worship services, I went for a hike up at Scott Creek.  I was hunting for the crucifix orchid (Orthoceras strictum) which, in that spot, can be a pale green colour.  I spotted a couple of the maroon-coloured ones in flower, but no green. Just along the track at that point, there is…

Couldn’t you watch with me even one hour?

Jesus is in the garden of Gethsemane.  It’s the night of His betrayal and arrest.  Tomorrow He will be crucified.  He says to some of His disciples, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me” (Mt 26:38).  He moves away to pray, and upon returning,…

I waited for you

I waited for you (Luke 15:20) During last Sunday’s Poetry Church, we reflected on one of Jesus’ best-known parables.  That of a man whose son takes his inheritance early, squandering the lot in a distant country, only to find himself with nothing.  We read, “he had spent everything… he had nothing… no one would give…