Tuesday, 20 September 2016


In my supervised Field Education class last week we had a discussion around the concept of time, in part because most of the people in the class were late for the 9am class.  Some people are almost always late for appointments, some are not comfortable unless they are 10 minutes early and others most often arrive just on time.  How our parents dealt with time, undoubtedly has an influence on how we think about time and punctuality.  

Time is one of those interesting concepts, both in terms of the hours on the clock, but also the times or seasons of our lives.  And how we spend our time is also interesting – do we spend it on things which are important or squander it away on things which are more trivial?  What is most valuable when you think of time?  Time spent at work, to earn a living; time spent with family; time to nurture your own interests - how do you balance your use of time?  Do you think about time as a finite commodity…we only get so much time, or does it seem endless? Are you happy with the way you spend your time and if not, what can you do to change things?

Time is one of those things which seems to expand or contract depending on what you are doing – time waiting for a test result seems to take forever, time spent on vacation goes by quickly.
Paul and I have both celebrated birthdays this month and we wonder where the time has gone. 
We have had a great time in Baltimore this week with Jennifer and Justin and Kim and Mitch to celebrate Paul’s birthday.

Today Kim and I went with Jennifer for her 28 week ultrasound and we got to see little “Chicklet.”…all two pounds and 10 ounces of him.  All being well, in 12 weeks or so, he will make his way into the world and we will start a new time in our lives.

Many of us are familiar with the words of Ecclesiastes 3, which starts with, "To everything there is a season and a time for every matter under heaven" The writer then lists a variety of times, including a "time to be born and a time to die."  We might well argue that many die to young, far before their time - but that is for another reflection.  A bit further in chapter 3, the author says, these words, which to me speak about God's desire that we find joy in the times of our lives, 

12 I have concluded that the only worthwhile thing for them is to take pleasure in doing good in life; 13 moreover, every person should eat, drink, and enjoy the benefits of everything that they undertake, since it is a gift from God.

We have had a great time being together this week and I have many things with which to fill my time, till I return to Baltimore to await the baby’s birth.  It is an exciting time in our lives and it is a gift.

Wednesday, 7 September 2016


So you know from last week's blog that I am back to “work” after my summer of semi-retirement. I spent time in the office this week planning worship to focus on the season of creation, a fairly new liturgical season introduced by the Lutheran Church in Australia.  This season is part of the larger season of Pentecost and offers us the opportunity to reflect more deeply on our part in this wonderous and mysterious gift of God known as creation and which God proclaimed was good.

More Voices has so many beautiful pieces of music which pick up elements of creation. I particularly love “Called by Earth and Sky” #135

Called by earth and sky
Promise of hope held high
This is our sacred living trust
Treasure of life, sanctified
Called by earth and sky

The verses go on to speak of the preciousness of water, air, land and fire and our responsibility to passionately care for all that has been entrusted to us.

There is something in the power of nature and its many expressions that speaks to my soul; from the awesome power of storm, to the magical moments under a star lit sky; to the sweeping grain across a prairie field or the serenity of early morning looking over the lake at the cottage or sunset when the day is done.

There is also something incredible about the ability of nature to heal the earth when we leave it alone.  I remember a TLC show that postulated what would happen to the earth if humans were no longer present.  It was amazing how quickly the earth would return to its prehuman state and most signs of human presence would be eliminated.  When I ponder the power of creation, I am reminded how small and insignificant my part is in it.

The refrain for Psalm 148 in More Voices says:

Let the whole creation cry, “Glory be to God on high”

The 5th Gospel

On Friday in chapel at AST I was offered wonderful words of blessing and prayer as I prepared for this trip to Israel. Sr. Joan Campbell...