Tag Archives: response

Ending or Beginning #adventbookclub – Day 31

So now we move to endings – highly appropriate for New Years Eve

Mark 16:1-8 (CEV)

Jesus Is Alive

16 After the Sabbath, Mary Magdalene, Salome, and Mary the mother of James bought some spices to put on Jesus’ body. Very early on Sunday morning, just as the sun was coming up, they went to the tomb. On their way, they were asking one another, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance for us?” But when they looked, they saw that the stone had already been rolled away. And it was a huge stone!

The women went into the tomb, and on the right side they saw a young man in a white robe sitting there. They were alarmed.

The man said, “Don’t be alarmed! You are looking for Jesus from Nazareth, who was nailed to a cross. God has raised him to life, and he isn’t here. You can see the place where they put his body. Now go and tell his disciples, and especially Peter, that he will go ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you.”

When the women ran from the tomb, they were confused and shaking all over. They were too afraid to tell anyone what had happened.

They thought it was the end, both his followers and those who wanted rid of him.  They thought Jesus was gone, never to be seen or heard of again.

But it turns out the end, was actually the beginning.  The beginning of something new.  The story is left hanging.  What happened next?  Where did the women run to?  Did they ever get over their fear and tell someone?  Was their confusion resolved?  We know the answers because we have the rest of the story – but they hadn’t.

Tonight 2013 comes to an end – whether we are desperate for it to be over, or wish it would go on and on.  But tomorrow dawns 2014.  It is both a new beginning and a continuation.  There are lives to lead, unresolved questions to seek answers for, stories to tell.

Maggi talks about the endings of books.  I hate it when a books doesn’t have a proper ending.  I need to know.  I want the ends tied up, to find out what happens.  But life has loose ends.  The turning of the calendar tonight means that life goes on.  Every ending is a beginning.

In a sense Mark hands the story of Jesus over for us to complete.

What is our conclusion, our response to the life and teachings of Jesus?  If this is the beginning, what will we make the ending be?  How will we live it out in our lives?  Jesus’ life was a beginning.  He’s shown us what to do – now it’s up to us to get on with it.  As his life ended,  the life of our response begins.

He has Risen

This year, several of us are reading Beginnings and Endings by Maggi Dawn and joining together to comment on it.  Do join us at the Adventbookclub Facebook page, follow #adventbookclub on Twitter or comment below.  If you are also reading and blogging on this book, let me know and I will link to your blog.

Advertisements

Encountering God #adventbookclub – Day 19

Luke 1:26-33 (CEV)

An Angel Tells about the Birth of Jesus

26 One month later God sent the angel Gabriel to the town of Nazareth in Galilee 27 with a message for a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to Joseph from the family of King David. 28 The angel greeted Mary and said, “You are truly blessed! The Lord is with you.”

29 Mary was confused by the angel’s words and wondered what they meant. 30 Then the angel told Mary, “Don’t be afraid! God is pleased with you, 31 and you will have a son. His name will be Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of God Most High. The Lord God will make him king, as his ancestor David was. 33 He will rule the people of Israel forever, and his kingdom will never end.”

Who me Lord?
I am blessed
and will be a blessing?

Me?

You are with me Lord,
I know that.

But this?

Me?

You want me to have your son?
Is there a choice?
How can this be?

You want me to carry your son?
Within the depths of my being.
To nurture him.
To bring him to birth.

Me?

What have I done
that makes me worthy of such a task?
How can I be trusted with this?

I too
am called to carry God within me.
Not like Mary,
but in my life every day.
I am nothing special,
But he longs to be in my life,
to live
and grow
and come to birth.

I too am overwhelmed.
How can I be worthy
of such a task,
how can I be trusted?

And yet
God asks

And I respond

Maggi points us to the importance of ‘meeting with God (p92), a connection between a person and God.  An encounter that profoundly changes us.

Gabriel’s Message

This year, several of us are reading Beginnings and Endings by Maggi Dawn and joining together to comment on it.  Do join us at the Adventbookclub Facebook page, follow #adventbookclub on Twitter or comment below.  If you are also reading and blogging on this book, let me know and I will link to your blog.

God Among Us #adventbookclub – Day 3

Luke 1:1-7 (CEV)

Many people have tried to tell the story of what God has done among us. They wrote what we had been told by the ones who were there in the beginning and saw what happened. So I made a careful study of everything and then decided to write and tell you exactly what took place. Honorable Theophilus, I have done this to let you know the truth about what you have heard.

An Angel Tells about the Birth of John

Distant Shores Media/Sweet Publishing [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

When Herod was king of Judea, there was a priest by the name of Zechariah from the priestly group of Abijah. His wife Elizabeth was from the family of Aaron. Both of them were good people and pleased the Lord God by obeying all that he had commanded. But they did not have children. Elizabeth could not have any, and both Zechariah and Elizabeth were already old.

The story of what God has done among us.  That is what the bible is trying to tell us.  That is what Luke wants to continue to tell us.

Luke wants us to know why he is writing.  He’s telling us about real life characters.  People we can identify with.  Maggi points out that Luke

wants to tell us in a way that demands personal engagement with Jesus (p22)

Luke is telling us a story, a true account, not so that we can be interested or entertained, but so that we can engage with Jesus, God Among Us, and do something about it.  This is not a story to be heard dispassionately, but entered in to and responded to.

Advent is our opportunity to meet God anew.  To remember his place here among us.  And to do something about it.  To let him change our lives by his presence.  To hear the Good News, to realise it is for us and to let it come in our lives.

God among us,
God in our midst,
God in our world,
God in my life,
Thank you that you are here,
that your life is real,
human,
God among us.

May we respond,
as we encounter you
in and through this Advent journey

The King Among Us

This year, several of us are reading Beginnings and Endings by Maggi Dawn and joining together to comment on it.  Do join us at the Adventbookclub Facebook page, follow #adventbookclub on Twitter or comment below.  If you are also reading and blogging on this book, let me know and I will link to your blog.