Mary's blog 2018

"Ali-ali-aster! Snow, snow faster!" - which only works with a Yorkshire accent but that is where the rhyme seems to come from....... I know I should be more serious but snow like we’ve had recently brings out the child in me. Both inner and outer. The outer one enjoys putting on my new warm boots (birthday present) and lots of layers of clothing plus woolly hat and making the first footprints -somewhere in the garden or round Sugar Lane cemetery where we walk the dog. Any encouragement would definitely result in a spot of sledging.

Snow funThe inner child still feels wonder and excitement. Wonder at a world transformed one tiny spot of white at a time into a magical alternative country where familiar shapes are softened and blurred at the edges. The excitement comes from changes of plan, routines interrupted and the uncertainty over how long, how cold, how deep this weather event will be.

Of course, I pray for those for whom it is dangerous or disastrous but it’s hard for me to be wholly downcast when our climate throws us this white wrapped gift.

The gift includes many opportunities to love our neighbours – from checking on the elderly person down the street to helping out at the local homeless night shelter. It’s a cliché to say that shared adversity brings out the best in people but there is nothing like being stuck in snow to find that other drivers get out of their cars to help you, to push or dig, or just to joke about the misery and grumble about the lack of council gritters. Community, good community forms in front of our eyes.

Our experience of church is a similar thing. It often takes the out-of-the-ordinary, whether good or bad, to open our eyes properly to those we share life with and to help us feel connected by our mutual experience. The reality is we share the deepest and most profound experience, which is faith and hope in Jesus Christ, but you wouldn’t always know it in the way we are with one another in church.

sledThe good news is we don’t have to have snow for us to find we can connect. In church and out we can make that kind of community happen by some simple actions. Sometimes it’s just for a moment.

Try going out to share hot cross buns this Good Friday. Sometimes it can make a magical transformation.
Try doing a litter pick at your local park. Sometimes it changes a life.
Try talking to the person who sells the Big Issue. Sometimes it creates an alternative country where the blind see, the lonely are enfolded, the prisoner released and the good news is preached.

We don’t need to have snow to share that kind of wonder and excitement! We just need to be touched again by the softness and the grittiness of Jesus and want to pass it on.


(Posted 19-3-2018)



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