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Showing posts from May, 2007

Living Beyond Fear..

This is the edge of the Clifton Suspension Bridge: if you like its the motif of Bristol. My hotel is just round the corner so before dinner last night I decided to take a stroll to the bridge. Which I did. I wanted to walk across because I would then be able to see the area where I'll be living. But I literally took one step onto the (wobbling) bridge and couldn't go any further. Fear totally took over and I retreated to the side.

As I reflected last night, I realised that the bridge was emblematic of where I have come to. The bridge is high: but it is safe (anything up to 4 tonnes can go over it, I'm going to be OK). The bridge is a route that people have travelled for over 150 years. Yes, some people have chosen to end their lives off the bridge but it doesn't mean that the bridge cannot be enjoyed by other. Moreover, the bridge is the only way to the other side.

I feel a real call of God to live beyond fear. Its more than just facing fears, acknoweldging th…

Love Bristol!

I'm the West Country doing a little reconnaisance before moving here in September. And I have to say that I love it! I'm really enjoying Bristol. Its quite big (confession, I did wonder why the map wasn't as 'handy' as a Luton one, then clocked, its cos its bigger.. well done!).

And its very beautiful! Built all over hills (remind me of this when I have to cycle), its got so much character: but is strangely anarchic at the same time. The ravaging bombing of WW2 has left Bristol with a rag tag of architectural styles sat next to each other.

And I like the people. And it has great places to eat. And its near the sea! And it just feels less frenetic than the south east!

In short; come visit!


I read this earlier:

Anxiety is the inability to be present.
Mark Yaconelli

How often am I present? I know the obvious times; when I feel anxious and want to not be around people. But what about my anxiety driving me from the presence of God? What about when our lives are about event after event, experience after experience, with no time to be present with other people. What about when we fidget, daydream, are inattentive?

It seems to me that we are an anxious people. About what? To be honest I'm not sure. That we aren't popular enough, that we haven't done enough, that God demands more of us.

And yet God only seems to want our presence. To walk with us in the cool of the day, to be present with us: thats how it all ends, God and us, present with each other. Lord forgive my anxiety.

Peace and calm

I think the last time i blogged I was explosive about the whole school thing? Very unlike me I know (*smirks sheepishly*). Anyway, today is a lot calmer. The students are, as ever, great. I'm still really enjoying teaching: today I did some stuff around the Banksy holocaust piece.

We have OfStEd after half term: happy happy days. Its not a direct hit on my department but they will want to see our literacy and citizenship strategies! Means my lessons on spelling graffitti right should be a hit!

Unnaccustomed as I am..

Not strictly speaking true. I am about to rant. I know I do it a lot. But actually not often about school. But this time.

It may be because these are my last few weeks in this esteemed profession but the whole rules thing is making me seeth. There are so many rules that the kids don't know whether they are coming or going! There's crappy paperwork that means NOTHING. There are too many people who get their identity in being a teacher so if a kid threatens that by acting up in their class they implode and have the kid removed. Its a big fat load of something a vicar shouldn't say!

Enough enough enough.

I think I will spend the next eight weeks rabbel rousing among the kids.

(p.s. expect a post in the next few hours recanting of much of this).

books: good materialism?

I just bought 48 books.

All in one go.

They are Bible commentaries and will be very useful for the rest of my life, and are in boxed sets (which you can only get from the States).

But I feel the need to confess. In general terms I don't really like "stuff". But I have this glaring weakness for books! I love them. I keep them. I don't throw them away. I have them catalogued on an online database, with their ISBN numbers. I am a book geek!

I got most excited by one of these yesterday. Geek I tell you!

Anyway. I should go back to doing something sensible!

Psalm 139

Thought I would start to blog some of the liturgy/ thoughts/ stuff that I've played with. This one I wrote for somethingAndywas doing, now Kateis using it so thought I'd public it here!

Oh Lord, you have scanned me seen me in passing
I show you my schedule of busyness and importance, I guess at your thoughts from afar
I avoid you in my going out and my lying down
By now you are familiar with these (all my) ways
Before an arrangement is in my diary you know I’m too busy to be alone.

They hem me in– friends behind and before: keep your hands off me,
Such closeness is too hard for me, too intimate for me to feel safe.

How can I meet with your spirit? How can I encounter your presence?
If I go to my cell group will you be there?
If I make my bed in a community of grace, would you meet with me?
If I rise at the earliest hour, and flee to the other side of the world, to preach your name, could you find me there?
Would your right hand hold me tight?

If I say “surely my friends will not leave m…

Can't think of a title!

This is a happy post! I heard on Saturday that I have been accepted to train for ordained ministry in the Church of England! Yes, I'm going to be a vicar!

I start training in Bristol early in September!

Walk on.. walk on..

Not a post about my achilles (improving by the way). No, tonight I am preaching. Its about why do we gather in worship. My theme, rightly or wrongly, is football. My title slides are all football chants or sayings:

"We all Follow", "You'll Never Walk Alone" (this section I can't get through without tears), "The referee's a... ", and "Some of the crowd are on the pitch".

Its a risky one as many people won't be into football. But it feels so very very right to do.. All prayers very welcome! (or you could come see?, St Mary's 7pm!)

Bless you

Deciding who we are!

Don't ask why I'm up so early but I am and I'm just watching the election results come in. Its not looking massively bad for Labour just yet. In fact, looking at the the stats what comes through to me is that we are beginning to decide. The Lib Dems losing and a bunch of NOC councils falling to the Tories are telling me that we are starting to polarise. Its become enough about national things that people are trying to place themselves a bit for the General Election. And the early signs are that Mr Cameron doesn't have it all sewn up.

Also interesting that Alex Salmond was moaning about making Scottish people vote in an STV and a FPTP vote at the same time. Isn't that what party activists should be doing? Politicians beware that people may not know how to vote anymore!

how annoying!

Since the start of the year I have been trying to get a bit fitter! I love sport and exercise and have really relished the thought of getting stuck back in. I just feel so much more alive when I do stuff!

Anyway: the annoying bit is that everytime I get some time and space to do it, something in my body goes wrong! Be it flu, a misplaced gland, weird ear canals and now a nodule on my Achilles tendon, its just a bit frustrating!

All prayers very welcome. I have to rest the tendon as much as possible, so will be sitting with my feet up for the next few days! Pray for much good reading!