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Showing posts from July, 2012

John Stott's Daily Prayer

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This day last year John Stott died. For those who don't know who he was, for over half a century he was the figurehead of mainstream evangelicalism within the UK, personifying a gracious, thoughtful conservatism that made it difficult for even those who disagreed with him to become disagreeable...
During the year subsequent year I came across what was described as John Stott's Daily Prayer. I offer it to you today for your prayerful reflection:



Heavenly Father, I pray that I may live this day in your presence and please you more and more. Lord Jesus, I pray that this day I may take up my cross and follow you. Holy Spirit, I pray that this day you will fill me with yourself and cause your fruit to ripen in my life: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control Holy, blessed and glorious trinity, three persons in one God, have mercy upon me. Almighty God, Creator and sustainer of the universe, I worship you. Lord Jesus Christ, Savior and Lo…

Nice Baps

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What follows is a short skit that could introduce the bit of Mark Gospel that this week's recommended lectionary reading (Mark 6:30-34, 53-56) misses out, ie the Feeding of the 5000. It was adapted for a Northern Irish context and idiom from the original "Nice Rolls" by Jonathan Mortimer, now Vicar of All Saints Parish in Peckham, in his CPAS booklet, "See What I Mean?"
Young man and an older woman are standing eating baps/rolls Man:         Nice baps Mrs! Woman:   I beg your pardon young man!? (folding arms) How dare you !? Man:         No, sorry… (holding out bap) I meant these… Woman:   Sorry… I thought you were being rude… Man :        No… Not at all… Have you any idea what’s in them, Mrs? Woman:   I’m not sure. Fish I think... Man:         Do you know what time it is by any chance? Woman:   (Looks at watch, then holds it to ear shocked) I don’t believe it. Man:         What’s wrong? Woman:   It’s nearly half eight. I should have been home ages ago… My husband will…

Sing when you're Winning (and at all other Times Too)

This is the last in the short series which I called "Songs of Experience" (stealing the title from William Blake via Roy Clements) looking at some of the Psalms that speak into the darker side of human emotion, an area that we often avoid talking about as Christians. I should have published this at the end of June, but where I am currently based things don't get quieter in the summer -  and I am slowly running out of steam... Anyway, in this last one we look at things on the sunnier side of the street.


When I first prepared the material on this final Psalm in this short series entitled "Songs of Experience" I called it "Count your blessings" taken from the old gospel standard which tells us to: “Count your many blessings, name them one by one, And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.” But let me make a confession… while I agree wholeheartedly with the sentiments of that song, I absolutely detest it… But this modern song with the same title by Ka…

Death of the Dipper (Reblogged)

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A reblogged monologue by Herod Antipas inspired by today's Gospel reading from the Lectionary in Mark 6: 14-29. Wrote it three years ago as per the lectionary cycle, but didn't use it until this morning... If I was being generous to fellow preachers out there I should have re-posted it a few days ago... But I didn't want to spoil the effect for the few members of my own congregation that occasionally stumble onto this blog.

Why!? Why could the damned dipper not keep his nose out of my personal life?
And why could Herodias not simply ignore him? What harm could he do once I’d locked him away?
Yes, he went on and on about the immorality of our relationship, but what did she expect? He’s a religious fanatic… But if he is one of God’s prophets I don’t want his blood on my hands as well as my marital sins…
But she didn’t care… She wanted his head on a plate… Literally. And she knew just how to get it… The same way she got me in the first place…
I’ve always been a sucker for a b…