I bend down and feel for the money bag at my feet. It’s heavier than normal for this time of the day. I’ve had the usual quota of ‘poor harvest’ stories, of course, but generally people know I mean business. Pay your taxes or suffer the consequence, that’s my motto. There’s the odd person who comes in and tries to play the ‘we grew up together’ card. Yet, I always remind myself of how they treat me once I leave this booth. To them I am the scum of the earth. Continue reading
Recently I met a truly wise woman of God. We were at a Writer’s Conference and she was facilitating the Poetry track. As this was not my group I had little reason to interact with her. Every morning, however, Heather would read a reflection, her soft Irish accent breathing life into the beautiful slow words, lifting them up to dance, and touch my soul. Continue reading
In all my years fishing on the Sea of Galilee, I had never seen a storm like this. Throughout the night the wind’s strength grew. It belligerently resisted us, flinging angry waves across our bow. As we fought to stay upright on the crests and troughs, despondency set in. We were tired, soaked to the bone and starting to fear for our lives. Then we saw a shadow moving across the water. Terror clenched at my heart and someone screamed. Could this be a spirit—a sure sign that we were doomed to die in this accursed storm? Continue reading
One conversation kept creeping up among Jesus’ disciples. Right until the night of his arrest they were debating, arguing and evaluating it amongst themselves, despite everything Jesus had already said on the topic.
James, the son of Zebedee tells us of just one of these encounters: Continue reading
The sunset sky, shining with an array of hues
Silently declares your creativity
And I wonder if you crafted me
From such a vast palette of colours.
Right now I feel only grey and drab.
Then I remember I am your “poiema”, your masterpiece
Of which you are the most proud.
Forgive me for not reflecting your glory, like that still sky
For repressing my creative radiance
For feeling unworthy
When I am shaped in your very own image. Continue reading
Today our journey finds us winding down a dusty path between simple mud-brick homes. As we duck into the narrow entrance of one of these, we hear the clatter of a falling jug followed by a soft curse. After the bright sunlight, it takes our eyes a while to adjust to the dark interior, and so we hear the talking and laughter before we actually see the group of people reclining at a low table. From behind a wall a woman appears, the shards of a broken jug in her hands. As she leans down to speak to the rabbi, her eyes narrow accusingly on the single woman in the group. Continue reading
It is with some reluctance that I kick off my first blog. Living in such a fast-paced, noisy, over-stimulated world, every fibre of my body yearns for stillness. I want to unplug the computer and stifle the steady Facebook and Twitter feeds. I want to silence my cell-phone with its constant beeps—reminding, promising, demanding. To mute the television’s drone which alternates between mindless drivel and deplorable horror. I am ashamed to say that my worn-out mind can’t always distinguish between these two extremes.
I hesitate to add to this flood of information and thought. Yet, through these short impressions and reflections I hope to learn—and possibly impart—some lessons on how to live joyfully and fully in the midst of the turmoil called life.
The name of my blog is taken from Jesus’ words in Matthew 11 (and how surprising it is to me that people felt this same way almost two thousand years ago):
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (The Message)
And so for the next few months I come to walk with, work alongside and watch the Master, and to allow His unforced rhythms of grace to direct my journey. Are you tired and worn out too? Why don’t you come along for the journey.