Fox in Glasgow’s West End

Here is a short video (47 seconds) I took of Lily outside as she spied on a fox in the allotments (gardens) behind our house. Sophie and I watched from our hallway window. This is increasingly common – we see foxes as often as squirrels – but you still need to be careful.

Healthy church confusion

It is very easy to think that a building is church and it is something you go to on Sunday morning. But what if church became so confusing that everything you did was ‘church’? That no matter where you were you experienced God’s presence. Or you couldn’t tell the difference in your worship expression through a deed or singing a song? Or when you went to a place that you knew physically as ‘church’ but the gathering was nothing like church as you traditionally know it?

I think for Christendom this would be very confusing and unsettling. We’d label that expression heresy or that expression as wrong since we are ‘basing our faith on good works’. We’d say we could invite our friends to this gathering but not to that gathering – one would scare them away, the other would be tantalizing them with the things of God & enjoyable. Or personally, this would feel like church since we got all dressed up, went somewhere we recognized as a church building and sang and listened to some songs. On the other hand, a very similar activity wouldn’t feel like church but we still got dressed up, went to the same building and sang & listened to some songs.

Recently that has been what it is like for our family. As adults, we feel quite comfortable in this unsettled place even though we are thoroughly familiar with a Christendom church model. And yet, I see our children embracing this way as the norm for them; they know nothing else. Here are two experiences that highlight this: Continue reading

Autumn – a ‘good or bad’ cycle?

Yesterday Wes taught from Ecc. 1:1-11 and shared how the ambiguous nature of the text may have been intentional. He read the passage with a Hebraic emphasis on certain words that drew out the absurd and wearisome cycle of the weather/seasons and then of man and our response. It is a legitimate reading depending upon your current disposition. Then Stuart read the same text, different emphasis, and it had an entirely positive spin on it. The cycles of the seasons are good – we know when to plant, when to harvest, and there is a variety and yet conistency in them – how wonderful! Wes’ reading was that the cycles go on and on with no end – how wearisome!

Last week I raked our lawn and enjoyed the fine weather. I filled a whole bin with leaves and Sophie rode the scooter up and down the pavement with such glee – how wonderful! Today coming back from walking the kids to school, there is more raking to do – how wearisome!

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Sailors with FORKs

Follow this link to read about a clean up effort I am volunteering with on Wednesday. This is one that I’ve only run a few errands for. Sally who is mentioned in the article, is the brains & brawn behind this one. BTW – FORK: Friends of the River Kelvin

Friends of the River Kelvin (FORK)

Carol & Sophie at FORK 

Last Saturday, Mosaic joined with FORK to clean up a section of the river near a museum. It was in conjunction with a project that will kick off in the summer with the RSPB (live video feeds of nesting birds). FORK got some press when the Daily Record reported on the clean up as part of Environmental Week. In October, I became the Practical Conservation officer for FORK but as a family we have been participating since April. I am amazed at how much a few people can do for the environment.  Of greatest joy to me is the relationships that form as we care for creation. I’ve met Mark, the convenor of FORK, Michael an environmental consultant, Nick a budding photographer, etc.

As a Christian, I approach the work with a redemptive and sacramental posture. With each beer can, shopping trolley, or road cone reclaimed from the river, I catch a glimpse of the New Heavens and the New Earth. Relationships are built as we pursue a common purpose. Serving quietly in the name of Jesus, we demonstrate the presence of God; He is manifest through our actions in the world.  

I am drawn to Paul’s letter to the church in Colosse (Col. 1:19-20) “For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” I think God is pleased!