Uncategorized

Reformation – 500th Anniversary

Today marks the 500th year of the Protestant Reformation.   The word Reformation is sadly overused in Scotland.  One would hear it at least a few times a week.  In Scotland, my observation was that people often used the Reformation as an excuse to be unkind to other Christians who were different to them.

Now that we live in England, I haven’t heard much about the Reformation.  Due to my lack of full mobility, I have recently started reading quite extensively .  Since this year marks the 500th year of the Reformation, what better book to read than a book on the Reformation?

Why the Reformation still matters is excellent for anyone wanting a summary of the Reformation. It is written by Michael Reeves and Tim Chester.   I found the book particularly interesting now that I am away from Scotland where as mentioned earlier the word Reformation is overused and sadly misused too!

One thing that struck me about the Reformation is that it was not the work of one person, Martin Luther.  He certainly was the main driving force and there is no denying that.  However, I realised that there were others like Zwingli who had an input and whose views were not identical to Luther’s.

For example, Luther’s view is that The Word and The Supper are combined in a weekly act of worship whereas Zwingli disagreed.  Zwingli said that the Word is central to weekly worship with the Supper celebrated three or four times a year.

I fear that as Protestant Christians we are moving more and more away from the Reformation principles but more towards Medievel Roman Catholicism.

Maybe we need a new Martin Luther to pull us back to the straight and narrow!

Uncategorized

The Missing Pallet

You will by now have gathered that since our move to No. 130, things have been a little challenging – to put it very mildly!

Recently the Minister was speaking to a Bishop and telling him of all that has happened to us.  The Bishop replied saying ” We should stop praying for grace for you and start praying for protection instead!!!!”.

When we left Scotland to moved to England, we had to leave ALL our earthly possessions in storage up in the Highlands for we didn’t have any firm plans.  We didn’t even have a permanent place to stay.  We had to stay in a tiny self catering place for a few weeks.  It was impossible to arrange a viewing from the Highlands and landlords always insisted on seeing you in person.  We almost parted company with 500GBP to a fraudster who had posted beautiful photos of a flat online which didn’t exist!

Since I was beginning to show signs of improvement, we decided that it was time to arrange for us to be reunited with our things in storage and so the arrangement was made.

The day of the delivery arrived.  Initially I was sad as the delivery of our items would mean severing the last tie that we had with my beloved Scotland however I was super excited on that day of the delivery.

The items were delivered in a pallet and I immediately recognised some of the boxes.   We decided to remove some of the cling film to make sure that none of the boxes were missing.

Shock and Horror awaited us.  We didn’t recognise any of the boxes after all.  Something horrible had gone wrong.

The Minister immediately rang the storage company and explained the situation.  They rang us back a few days later to say that they cannot find our things.  None of it!!!!  They included 80 boxes of the Ministers books.  How can that be?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vicarage

The Unexpected (Part II)

Due to my illness, I do not go anywhere during the week.  I conserve all my energy so that I am able to go to Church on Sundays.

At the end of August 2017, the Minister was conducting a wedding in another city.  It was a wedding of a friend.  After much prayer I decided to accompany the Minister to the wedding.  It was my first outing in a long while and it turned out to be a very happy occasion.

I was extremely tired and was looking forward to coming home.  I was hungry and suggested to the Minister that we get a takeaway when we got home. It was almost 8pm before we got home as we had to give a fellow guest a lift home.

As the car pulled up the driveway, I noticed something odd.  The lights in the house were turned on.  I asked the Minister if we had left the lights on when we left the house 2 days earlier.   He jokingly said “yes”!

I was so tired that I was struggling the take the keys out of my bag.  As I handed over the keys to the Minister, I noticed that the flowerpot by the windowsill in the dining room was knocked over.   I thought that was odd but before I could  say anything I couldn’t believe what I was seeing……. The door had been chained from inside the house!!!!!!  We are the only people living in the house and nobody has the house keys!!!!! How could that be?  I was convinced it was somebody squatting.   The lights in the study and walkway were turned on.

We quickly got into the car and drove off.  My mind went completely blank.  Thankfully the Minister had the presence of mind to go to the vicarage next door, our immediate neighbours.   We phoned the police from there and waited for them to get here.   I was cold, tired and so confused.  Why did God allow this?  Does He not know that I am just recovering from a serious illness?  How much more can we bear?

The police arrived and it soon transpired that we had been burgled!!!! Burgled?????  That can’t be right I said to myself.  We have never been burgled before.  It was a shock to my system.  Up in the highlands of Scotland, we don’t lock our doors and we have never been burgled. Sadly, the burglars did get away with some things.    They had gone through our mail and taken the Minister’s bank card.  A few days later, we discovered that the burglars had withdrawn money from our account  The advantage of being a clergy is that you never have enough money in your bank account.  They had taken money from the overdraft.   Strangely they never touched my jewellery.     The police came and did their job.  It was almost 2am before we went to bed.  The whole place had been turned upside down.  There was glass everywhere.  They had smashed the hall window to get in.

That night I couldn’t sleep.   The morning came and we had to stay at home as the forensics were coming.   That day was a blur however God gave us the grace and the strength to be at Evensong where the Minister even preached.

The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them – Deuteronomy 33:27

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prayer

Prayer Answered (Part III)

A good few weeks later, we received a call from the same lady.  This time someone else  she knew was downsizing.  A television, a 3 piece suite and a dishwasher were available.  This person just wanted 50 pounds for the dishwasher and a small donation for the television.  It was yet another answer to prayer.    We didn’t even have to arrange delivery.  It was all done for us!  How wonderful was that??

 

Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us – Ephesians 3:20