Tag Archives: Anna

Advent and Christmas

Long time no blog.

Yet another family crisis (how many can there be in one year I wonder to myself!) has rather occupied my life for the last three weeks –

BUT in that time, people have been beavering away on my behalf and I am delighted and quite excited to announce (cue fanfares, streamers, glitter explosions etc…)

2015-09-14 16.04.19

I have been encouraged to produce some of the reflections from this blog into a book, and decided to start with this collection of reflections for Advent and Christmas.  They are not new, but reworked for print.

Voices for Advent and Christmas contains 24 prayers and meditations on the familiar voices of the Christmas Story, from Adam through to Rachel weeping.  It covers the traditional readings of the Nine Lessons and Carols Service, plus others through to Jesus Presentation in the Temple.

It would work as a resource for worship, or as personal reflections to prepare ourselves in this busy season.

There has been a delay at the printers, but I hope it will be available later this week.

The price is £4 plus postage (70p second class within the UK, for other prices please ask)

To order or ask more please complete the form below and I can give you details for paying and you can give me your address.  Payment can be made via paypal or by sending me a cheque.

Thanks to everyone who has encouraged and cajoled me into this 🙂  And for anyone who is willing to buy one

 

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Anna iii #adventbookclub

Luke 2:36-38 (CEV)

Anna Speaks about the Child Jesus

36 The prophet Anna was also there in the temple. She was the daughter of Phanuel from the tribe of Asher, and she was very old. In her youth she had been married for seven years, but her husband died. 37 And now she was eighty-four years old. Night and day she served God in the temple by praying and often going without eating.

38 At that time Anna came in and praised God. She spoke about the child Jesus to everyone who hoped for Jerusalem to be set free. 

Sorry carried away by Anna and all it means for us, but wanted to pick up this point.  On page 12, Stephen Cottrell uses the phrase,

My hurts and regrets are still there.  But now they are known and illuminated, integrated and healed

This, imho, is the wonder and the power of the gospel.  God doesn’t come with a magic wand and remove the difficulties and the past.  But he shines a light, his light, onto it.  It is no longer something hidden, something to trip us up, something to pressure us.  It is something that he is present in, alongside us.  In “allowing ourselves to be found” (also Stephen’s phrase) we can be changed.

I’ve writtern about this before, from my personal experience, both in the context of Lent here and here if you want to read them.

The crux of the matter is, that facing up to the reality is always better than living in fear that one day it will turn around and bite you. 

Lord I bring to you
my struggle,
my pain,
my despair,
my anger,
my frustration.

It sit with it
with you.
And I wait
as your unfailing love
and mercy continue
and help me to live

 

Join us reading Walking Backwards to Christmas by Stephen Cottrell from SPCK Publishing this advent.  Be part of #adventbookclub, share your thoughts here, on your own blog (and let us know we’ll link to it), on Twitter using #adventbookclub or on the Adventbookclub Facebook page

Anna #adventbookclub

Welcome to #adventbookclub.  We are all reading Backwards to Christmas by Stephen Cottrell.  Each one of us will have different reactions and reflections.  Each of us will share them differently.  There are eleven chapters that you can work through and reflect on as works for you.

These are my reflections.  Most are my responses to the reading, some my responses to what Stephen Cottrell has written.  Some have only taken up one day, some I have spread over a few, because different angles occurred to me.  I hope they help in your reflecting, and I look forward to reading your responses to help mine.

Thanks for joining the journey.

Luke 2:36-38 (CEV)

Anna Speaks about the Child Jesus

36 The prophet Anna was also there in the temple. She was the daughter of Phanuel from the tribe of Asher, and she was very old. In her youth she had been married for seven years, but her husband died. 37 And now she was eighty-four years old. Night and day she served God in the temple by praying and often going without eating.

38 At that time Anna came in and praised God. She spoke about the child Jesus to everyone who hoped for Jerusalem to be set free.

Anna had been waiting.  Waiting so long.  I wonder if she knew even what she was waiting for – but she knew it when she saw it.  God, here, amongst his people – a light in their darkness.

Waiting Lord.

Waiting,
searching,
seeking,
longing.

Not always sure
what I am waiting for,
but waiting all the same,
sure I will know it
when I see it.

Waiting on you.
Waiting for you to act,
to do something.

Waiting for you to save us,
waiting for you to save me.

Waiting for you to come
and be
amongst us.

Waiting for the light,
waiting to see.

Praying,
watching,
waiting,
longing.

Come Lord,
I pray.

Join us reading Walking Backwards to Christmas by Stephen Cottrell from SPCK Publishing this advent.  Be part of #adventbookclub, share your thoughts here, on your own blog (and let us know we’ll link to it), on Twitter using #adventbookclub or on the Adventbookclub Facebook page