Determined Seed

By Laura Wallace

As frozen earth holds the determined seed,

this sacred space holds our weariness, our

worry, our laughter and our celebration.

Let us bring seed and soul into the light

of thought, the warmth of community,

and the hope of love.

Let us see together, hear together,

love together. Let us worship.

Trust in that power.

We are, together, held by that power.

Locked down
There were other doors
once locked in fear,
in a time of waiting
and distress.


It was an uncertain,
questioning time -
longing for what had been known
and treasured before.


Into that space,
calming and soothing,
came these welcome words -
“Peace be with you.”


Peace be with you in every worry,
in every sleepless night,
in every loss experienced,
in every comfort now distant.


Peace be with you in every certainty,
in the shared burden of these days,
in the unexpected connections,
in the gift of another sunset and sunrise.


Peace be with you and yours,
the deepest peace,
the strongest peace,
the peace that passes all understanding.


Christ is our peace
and is in our midst.
His words echo again -
“Peace be with you.”

Lezley Stewart

Every normal was once new....

it did not arrive,

but came to be.


Time and tide,

call and creativity,

all played their part

in where we arrived -

in this life in God

which we called normal.


And what of Christ,

our hope, our strength -

whose normal,

once,

was family life,

learning carpenter’s ways?


Did he welcome

his call and challenge,

this change to all he knew?


Did he also feel loss,

longing for the familiar,

even while bringing life?


And one day

our new normal,

(still becoming)

will also bring

new hope -

new ways to be.


Things will change

again and always,

for life and faith

never stand still.


God is making all things new.

Rev Lezley Stewart

Things Are Different Now

[a reflection for Holy Week by Rev Dr Lezley Stewart]


I wish I knew then,

what I know now –

how precious time was

as he walked among us.


There were crowds and questions,

the excitement of hearing and seeing,

and some so blessed to know his touch.


How quickly things can change,

all in the blink of an eye!

From cheers to jeers,

from faith to fear,

from celebrations to mourning.


I wish I knew then,

what I know now –

how precious all time is

as, still, he dwells among us.


No crowds now, but questions remain.

No chance to gather and hear and see

in ways we have always known.


Things are different now.


The days are long,

the nights are dark -

now testing times are here.


Fears still need their release,

hands still long to be held,

and in private mourning,

death is keenly felt.


Things are different now.


With those who once waited,

we must wait,

trusting,


in the life which will rise again.

For we will declare

now, as before,

that he is risen -

he is risen indeed!

Revelation 22:17 (NRSVA)

by James Cathcart, Sanctuary First

17 The Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come.’

And let everyone who hears say, ‘Come.’

And let everyone who is thirsty come.

Let anyone who wishes take the water of life as a gift.

The Spirit and the Bride in the reading don’t assess candidates and means-test the water of life.

There’s no examination.

There’s no theory and no practical.

There’s no certification process.

There’s no prerequisite.

There’s no entry requirement.

There’s no ‘essential’ and ‘desirable’ criteria.

There’s no criteria.

There’s no evidence required of competencies demonstrated in previous similar positions.

There’s no formal assessment of your pedigree or breeding.

There’s no informal assessment of your pedigree or breeding.

There’s no interview process.

There’s no isometric testing.

There’s no mention of IQ.

There’s no ranking.

There’s no waiting list.

There’s no backdating.

There’s no credit check.

There’s no spending limit.

There’s no data allowance.

There’s no peak usage small print.

There’s no terms and conditions.

There’s no wiki.

There’s no FAQ.

There’s no red flags, red tape, red herrings, red balance sheets, red signs, red lights, red carpets or red hands to get caught.

There’s just water.

PRAYER:

Dearest Lord,

May we all listen to your open invitation

and partake of the water of life.

Let all God's people say: Amen!

Message from the Moderator of the Church of Scotland

The Moderator of the Church of Scotland, the Rt Rev Colin Sinclair, has shared words for personal reflection throughout the Church as we face a new illness within our communities and world:

‘Living God, in our hour of need we turn again to you. We put our faith in you, because you have proved your faithfulness time and again. We reaffirm our love for you because you have never let us go. We pray for this pandemic spreading across our world, remembering all who have lost loved ones, and praying for those seriously ill at this time. We uphold the National Health Service. We pray for doctors and nurses and all in the caring professions.

We remember those working behind the scenes and uphold others working to create an effective remedy. We pray for our Governments in Westminster and Holyrood, as they work with the best medical advice.

May this crisis bring out the best in us, not the worst. Help us to live by faith and not by fear; to build bridges not barriers.

May we not forget our responsibility to one another. These prayers we bring to you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.’