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  • Dear Angry of Ayrshire...

    Having thought I had nothing to say this morning, I am now using my blog as an alternative to writing to the BT, something which could worsen an already inflamed situation if I wasn't very careful.  I am shocked and embarrassed by the aggression I sense in the letter(s) written by an Ayrshire Baptist as part of a long, and generally well-tempered, exchange on the complex and sensitive topic of assisted dying.  Differing views have been expressed, usually very graciously, and it has been an interesting and helpful exchange.  What troubles me is Mr Angry's judgementalism and lack of sensitivity towards those who feel differently than he does.  Especially troubling was his use of the expression 'coward and fool' to describe someone who would choose to die in such a way, and then his justification of this phrase after someone objected with some very harsh turns of phrase and some very simplistic use of the sixth Commandment. If he wants to play the proof text game - something I heartily disapprove of - then maybe he ought to check out Matthew 5:22 before he puts pen to paper.

    And now I've breached my Dad's rule of say nothing if you can't say something nice... oh dear, perhaps I need to go away and reflect on Matthew 7:3-4.

    This is a very complex topic, one my new Theological Reflection group has asked to explore in September, and there are some good resources out there offering Christian perspectives from people of differing conclusions.  Once I've finished reading them I may post some comments on them.

    From unthinking acceptance and foot-stamping legalism, may the good Lord deliver us.

  • Art

    uncle stewart last supper.jpg
    When this painting first appeared (in the 1970s) it caused a lot of controversy... Jesus in a pub, Celtic and Rangers supporters both among the disciples, a dog at the Last Supper...  The painting was shown on Nationwide and people offered their comments.  No-one beyond my family probably remembers this.  And we only do because we are related to the artist.

    This morning I was listening to some music and flicking through some pictures I will be using on Sunday; I wondered if today a Google search would finally reveal the painting (previous endeavours having failed).

    Challenge to the reader/viewer - which character in the picture is my relative (artist self portrayal) and what is the name and breed of the dog (which I recall patting when I was a child on a rare visit to Scotland... an obscure claim to fame!)

  • Nothing Worth Saying

    My Dad used to say, among other things, the following

    1. If you can't say something nice, say nothing
    2. If there's nothing worth saying, say nothing
    3. (Of people who talked twaddle) he/she opens their mouth and their belly rumbles

    Today I can't think of anything worth saying (I could grumble about the failures of various postal systems that have caused me hassle in the last few weeks, but that contradicts both constraints) and you really don't want to be subjected to the gurglings of my digestive system.  So, I'll shut up until there is something worth reading/sharing.

    Maybe that somehow fits with the fact that this Sunday's evening worship will include a lot of quiet/silence?

  • Plot Search

    For various reasons, most of them good, it has felt of late that I've have at best misplaced, and possibly lost, the plot.  This was epitomised by the realisation that I had planned (?!) to be in two venues, 360 miles apart, simultaneously...  In the noise of the gaudy quiz show 'uh-err'; in the noise of a former radio programme 'quack quack oops.'

    As I have said to various of my lovely Gatherers, I you find a plot lying around somewhere let me know, it just might be mine...!

  • Mysterious Ways

    Just now and again little miracles happen - well that is to say, we notice them when they do.

    Just now and again we glimpse the mystery of how God works in, through, with and despite us.

    Yesterday was one such day.

    I always worry if my work mobile phone rings after 10p.m. - who is dead or dying!  But this was someone who is sufficiently otherworldly that the hour would not even have been noticed, it was, thankfully only 10:30, and, because I had some visitors, I was still up!

    A haitus had been overcome through the grace of three angels, and a person who every now and then undergoes radical shifts of opinion had made one.

    As the title of a song I never learned because the grammar appalled me would express it, 'ain't God good'.